Board Members


Dorothy Cook is self-employed with her primary business being that of a Family Therapist, which she has done for over 25 years. Her lifestyle choices promote health and fitness and she loves to play in a Squash league in Regina where she resides. Dorothy got involved with Sepak Takraw several years ago as a volunteer and event coordinator, driver, and general ‘volunteer extraordinaire’ for past Saskatchewan Provincial Sepak Takraw Championships as well as Canadian Open Sepak Takraw Championships that Sepak Takraw Sask was a main co-hosting partner of. Showing tremendous leadership qualities, Dorothy was nominated and elected as president of STAS in 2011.





Raquel Marinho graduated in Physical Education, Specializing in Kinesiology and received her Master Degree in Science of Human Movement. She is founder and president of AMEDEC (Association of Unusual Sports in Brazil), since 2001. Through this work she was invited to join and help the Brazilian Association of Takraw (ABT), working with them since 2002. She has participated in several world/international championships in Thailand, Malaysia, China, and France. Her greatest achievements include being Coach of a two-time Division 3 World Champion Brazilian National Sepak Takraw Team. In International Competitions she led the Brazilian Team to win silver and bronze medals several times. Raquel has taught in Brazilian universities for seven years motivating her students to develop sports inside the schools, especially with the poor children in Brazil. She has many published works, including a chapter about Sepak Takraw in the Atlas of Sports. Raquel moved to Canada at the end of 2008 and has been a tremendous volunteer and office assistant (in 2010) for Sepak Takraw Saskatchewan, helping develop the Referee Program, train referees, and referee at provincial and national tournaments herself. Raquel served as STAS president in 2010 and has also been a key volunteer for Sepak Takraw Association of Canada and serving on the board as Secretary-Treasurer in 2010 as well. She is now part of STAC’s NCCP (National Coaching Certification Program) Committee that is responsible for the development of a Sepak Takraw NCCP.



RICHARD (RICK) ENGEL received his Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Regina and taught school for 6 ½ years, part of which included introducing the new sport of Sepak Takraw in Physical Education classes. Rick left teaching in 1993 and founded ASEC International, whose mandate was to ‘Bridge Understanding Between Cultures’, primarily between East and West, through Asia Presentations and ‘hands on’ experiences/activities in schools, of which one of the most popular cultural/sport activities became Sepak Takraw. Then in 1998, Rick founded, and is still President of, the Sepak Takraw Association of Canada (STAC) and since 2004 has been one of eight Vice Presidents of the International Sepak Takraw Federation (ISTAF), which governs the sport globally. In 2009 he helped establish, and is Vice President-Finance/Administration of, Sepak Takraw Saskatchewan, Canada’s first official Provincial Sport Governing Body (PSGB) for Sepak Takraw.

In spite of the time and energy committed towards the administration of Sepak Takraw provincially & nationally in Canada, Rick still also competes in the sport at every level and has quite a collection of every colour of medal from both provincial and national championships, as well as a silver medal from the King’s Cup World Championships. He has been player/coach of Canada’s national team, leading them to 11 world/international championship events in Thailand, Malaysia, China and France since 1999.

Rick has been awarded his international Coaching and Refereeing Certificates from ISTAF (2000), is currently completing his NCCP – Competition Development Certificate, is in demand for conducting Sepak Takraw Clinics all across North America, and has even conducted Sepak Takraw clinics in schools in France.

Interviewed by TIME magazine in an article on Sepak Takraw (May 28, 2007, Canadian & Asian editions), Rick is considered one of the key pioneers in the promotion and development of Sepak Takraw world-wide, has authored or co-authored 4 books on the sport, including, “Sepak Takraw 101” (1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th Editions … which has been translated into Indonesian and 3000 copies printed and put in Indonesian Schools) and “Get Active, Get Your Kicks! Sepak Takraw Benchmarks & Evaluation Resource Manual” (1st & 2nd Editions), and has produced 5 Sepak Takraw DVD’s. Rick has also helped create very informative national and provincial websites for the sport of Sepak Takraw in Canada, both of which have a high world-wide viewership, those being and

Over the years Rick has also been instrumental in organizing bringing International Sepak Takraw Teams from THAILAND, MALAYSIA, JAPAN, CHINA and USA to compete in various Canadian Open Sepak Takraw Championships and in separate Demonstration Events all across Canada. Local, provincial and national programs have involved Laos, Karen, Burmese and Philippine Canadians in the sport and have provided great avenues for integration into Canadian Culture. In the spring of 2008, Rick was the recipient of the National “Enriching My Canada and Yours” (EMCY) Award for his work with Sepak Takraw and contributions to Diversity in Sports in Canada.




Wallis Zbitnew has been on the STAS Board since 2008. She brings her training and experience as a teacher, an educational consultant, seminar facilitator, journalist and business woman to the Board. Her priority in this capacity is to support our founder and leader, Rick Engel and the entire STAS board, volunteers and players to reach out and enlarge the positive impact of Sepak Takraw in the developmental lives of girls, boys and adults in our province.






Ashley Anholt was first introduced to the sport of Sepak Takraw while traveling in South East Asia, more specifically in Thailand. She travelled to Thailand a couple of times while living in Hong Kong but she didn't get involved with the sport until she moved back to Canada and started connecting with the Karen people. In the summer of 2011, Ashley supported the Saskatoon Sepak Takraw teams at the national tournament in Regina and later got connected with Sepak Takraw Saskatchewan. Currently, Ashley is a grade 7/8 teacher in Saskatoon.









Vatsone Phonsavatdy grew up in a small village near Paksane in Laos , on the banks of the Mekong River. With financial support help from one of his older sisters, he was able to attend high school in Vientiane, the capital city, and receive a better education than he could have if he had remained in his village … something that had a positive effect in shaping his future. In the early 1970′s Vat, like many at that time, made his way to Thailand and found himself in a Refugee Camp with little else to do but to play Sepak Takraw day in and day out until he was able to immigrate to Canada. He made his new home in Regina, SK, joining what was to become a small community of about 400 Lao-Canadians. Vat and many of the other Lao men that immigrated continued to play Sepak Takraw within their own group; it became an important social, recreational time for them. Eventually after a few other jobs, Vat settled into a secure position with Sask Power, one of the provinces crown corporations. He became involved with Sepak Takraw early on as the sport developed in Saskatchewan and Canada, serving on ASEC International’s Sepak Takraw Committee for many years, as well as being Vice President of Sepak Takraw Canada. He has helped organize provincial and national Sepak Takraw events, was a regular player for many years and has helped coach in the Regina club. Vat has also played a significant role in helping in the development of the Sepak Takraw Referee program and has served as a Referee at many Saskatchewan Provincial and Canadian National Championships Tournament Events. Internationally, Vat has competed with Team Canada at world championship events three times, first in Kuantan, Malaysia, in 2000, then in Bangkok, Thailand in 2004, and lastly in several provinces throughout Malaysia in the 2007 Malaysian Grand Prix. Vatsone currently resides in Regina together with his wife, a son and a daughter.