Staff Profiles

Daniel Poggi

Owner

As a very young child I was always an adventurer and loved to explore. I would leave home in the morning and return sometime after dark. Climbing has been an extension of my childhood allowing me to explore the world from a unique perspective. After 24 years of climbing I continue to be more passionate than ever about the sport that has given me so much including my heath, friendships, and my family. As the owner of Climb Base5 I am motivated to give back to the community that has provided me with so much. I am committed to sharing the best possible climbing experience my love for health and fitness and the opportunity for continual personal growth.

Kyle Rurak

Manager / Coach / Setter

I took my introductory course at Climb Base5 in 2009, and have been addicted to rock climbing ever since. I knew right away that I wanted to be involved within the climbing community and Climb Base5; not only was I getting in a great physical and mental workout, I was meeting great people and having fun! Base5 is like a second home to me, the atmosphere of the gym and the people who climb and work here is contagious, which is why I enjoy spending many hours here each week with these incredible people who I consider to be a part of my extended family.

Andrew Wilson

Head Coach / Setter

I learned to climb with my stepdad in 1985 but never really got hooked until I was in University. While studying exercise science, I took what I was learning and started experimenting with training methods. My climbing journey has taken me all over the world and introduced me to my best friends. Climbing is one of the ways I get a mental break from life. I love how mentally engaged one has to be to be successful. This focus energizes and relaxes me at the same time. Does that make any sense? ? I have been working at Climb Base5 for 5 years and the number 1 thing I love about this place is the people.

Ally Mandley

Desk Staff

They say do what makes you happy, so I climb. I first started climbing back in 2003 on the Junior Team at Climb Base5. However a short while after I stopped climbing for 8 years to pursue a more competitive level of soccer BUT I found my way back to Climb Base5 and have since made it my second home. Working at the gym is such an easy decision when the environment provides me with nothing but laughs and continually introduces me to great people who are just as passionate about climbing as I am.

Andrew Pooni

Desk Staff

Back in 2002 when I was in gymnastics I saw that next door they were opening a climbing gym and I decided to give it a try. Being only ten years old I was afraid of the heights, but the more I did it the less sketchy I felt. Eventually I joined a kids program where I learned to belay and never looked back. After graduating high school I immediately applied for a job with cliffhanger and four years later the gym I grew up climbing in was rebranded to Climb Base5, where I continue to climb and instruct today.

Danielle Roukema

Desk Staff

I have been climbing since January of 2015. I enjoy climbing because of the community. The people are really what make the sport worth while. It's also a great way to stay in shape while having fun! I've been working at the gym since November 2016. I love working at base 5 because it's great to see people improve at climbing, and being able to help them makes me remember why I fell in love with climbing in the first place.

Danika Mulder

Desk Staff / Coach

I started climbing regularly in March 2014, when I started working as a belayer at Base5, and I fell in love with it. I had never been athletic, so climbing marked a big change for me. Climbing is an incredibly fun form of fitness and has an amazing community where I now have a lot of my closest friends. I hope climbing remains a lifelong passion for me, and love the opportunity i get to share that passion while working at Base 5.

Hannah Block

Desk Staff

I took an instant liking to climbing after attending a friend?s birthday party, ironically, at this gym. Fast forward to today and I have been climbing for almost seven years; competitively for five. Climbing is a passion I can confidently say I will never lose - the uniqueness of the sport and its supportive community is unparalleled. I have had the pleasure of working at Base5 for over four years with a community of climbers that has become my best friends.

Keith Nelson

Coach

I started climbing in 2003, but didn?t stick with it. I returned to the sport in 2012 and have been climbing ever since. I love climbing for the physical challenge, the technical difficulty, and the mental discipline required to succeed. I have been working at the gym for about 3 years and, I enjoy helping other people achieve success in their efforts to become a better climber. The team at Base5 is amazing - everyone brings something special to the community and it makes working here very enjoyable.

Ken Fung

Desk Staff / Instructor
Having been working at the gym since it was a concrete shell in the early 2000s, he‘s the resident "old guy" at Climb Base5. A multi-sport athlete, climbing is in his cross-training repertoire that compliments his mountain biking, paddling, and yoga. Music is what motivates him in sport and he brings it whenever he’s in the gym. Keep your ears open when you‘re in the gym and you may find your head bobbing to some hip hop, electronic, or new catchy music while you’re climbing.

Nikki Ho

Desk Staff / Instructor

I started climbing in my early 20s after a friend suggested to try out top roping and I instantly fell in love with it. I started working at Climb Base5 shortly after starting climbing in 2012. The best aspect of working at Climb Base5 is how inclusive we are. No matter what level you are at, beginner or expert, you will be cheered on from staff, friends, and random people in the gym. I love climbing due to the continual challenge that it provides as you increase in grades or try a totally new style like trad climbing. It is a sport I hope to be doing for the rest of my life.

Ninke Kruger

Desk Staff
I started climbing in 2015. I‘ve always been passionate about fitness and I fell in love with indoor bouldering immediately after being introduced to it. Climb Base5 feels like a second home to me. Yes, the sport is addicting, but it’s practitioners are the most "grounded" people you will ever meet; they are a big part of the reason that climbing transitioned from being my sport into being my lifestyle.

Vincent Fung

Communications / Marketing

I first tried climbing while in Thailand in 2007 and have been climbing off and on ever since. The perks of joining the gym in May 2016 is that I get to climb more regularly and try out bouldering. I've realized that climbing is a lot of fun while learning about what your mind and body can (or can't do). Working here is great - people are friendly, inviting and like to share a good laugh.

Bill Westwell

Position

Hi, I'm Bill. I do a bit of everything here at the Edge; setting, instructing, and helping people out at the desk or on the phone. I've been climbing all my life and working at the Edge for most of it too. Aside from climbing stuff, I'm an avid cyclist, skier and a DJ who mixes a wide range of techno, house and minimal generes. Currently I'm studying at Emily Carr as I write and illustrate my first kids book.

Michelle Linhart

Position

Michelle is tea-loving, book-reading, cat-loving person who's been working for the Edge since 2000. As a coach she's a merciless stickler for proper footwork. As a team manager she's obsessively organized; everything is labelled, she has lists for her lists, and boy does she like colour-coding! As a person, Michelle is sunny, outgoing and just a little bit silly. But only just a little.

Nicole Lim

Instructor

Nicole is an instructor at the gym. She first fell in love with climbing at the Edge, however her love of the sport blossomed when she discovered that she could not only be climbing, but also frolicking outdoors in the sunshine. When Nicole is not attempting to scale local crags, you can find her collecting bad puns and even worse dance moves at the gym. So come stop by for a cheesy joke off. It's gouda be great.

Charlotte Boardman

Position

Ever wanted to visit the UK but didn't have enough money? Well come get your little bit of London here at the Edge. Charlie our local Brit will fill you with joy with her delightful accent and love of good tea. Since moving to Canada in 2011 and becoming a part of the famous McColl family she has developed a love of climbing and she can often be found at the Edge (and sometimes outside) working on her climbing technique.

Kia Kaspian

Position

Kia is a born and raised Vancouverite that has developed a love for coaching people of all ages and abilities in anything that has to do with movement. At the Edge, you will find him teaching kids aged 9 - 12 in our very own Spiders program, guiding teens in the Climb Club, running Intro to Indoor Climbing and Beyond the Basics courses, and working on technique with beginner and intermediate climbers in the Climb Clinic. His teaching doesn't stop at The Edge - you might just spot him teaching skiing, karate, tennis, or archery somewhere in the city! He is particularly keen on working with children and teens facing challenges, whether that has to do with a fear of heights or falling, anxiety, or guiding children with special needs!