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Board of Directors 2021-2022

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Natalie Barber 

Chair

The Women's Centre board and staff appreciate being able to count on community stakeholders who have been so supportive of the women and families that need our love and guidance.

Born and raised in Collingwood, my son and I moved to Owen Sound in 2017 to be closer to my fiancé and his two sons. I am a big sports fan, and I especially enjoy playing golf and baseball.

I've been in the financial industry for nearly 20 years where I've had the opportunity to be involved in many great community projects. I'm currently a Director with the Chamber of Commerce and the role allows me to meet even more people and support many local initiatives.

 

I'm looking forward to my upcoming term as Chair of The Women's Centre where I'll be working with staff, volunteers, and donors in continuing to provide support and guidance to women and their children who need our services.

 
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Alissa Angel

Vice Chair

I left a relationship once, and thankfully, I had family that welcomed me and gave me a temporary space to stay. Some women aren't so lucky, so creating awareness of the shelter's services may help a woman who is struggling leave an abusive relationship. TWC gives women time to get their lives together and look toward the future.

I volunteer on the board because it's important to have a safer place for women and children, and I want to make sure The Women's Centre is supported by our community.

 

In 2020, I cleaned-up the shelter gardens and hosted a birthday fundraiser to purchase trees, so the women and children could enjoy the outdoor space. I've been helping with yard work since, and recently, my son started helping as well. I also support TWC's financial literacy program by working with clients to identify and meet financial goals.

When I'm not volunteering, I'm spending time with my son and fiancé, playing with plants in my own garden, walking my dogs, and working with my clients.

Having a resource and safe space for women and children to go is important.

 
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Lingzi Layman

Treasurer

I believe in second chances and fresh beginnings - not only for women leaving a relationship, but also their children so that they have an opportunity to learn what a healthy relationship should look like.

Outside of volunteering with TWC, my husband and I recently welcomed our second child, so I have been spending a lot of my time enjoying our growing family.

I think as a community, we have a responsibility to provide a safety net for those who have none. TWC offers a safe and welcoming space for women, children, and pets when they need a fresh start. Anyone can be caught in a bad relationship - it can be our mothers, sisters, or ourselves. When that happens, we need someone to tell us it's not our fault and to help us get back on our feet. We have the responsibility to take care of our women and children when they are most vulnerable.

 
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Heather Sheldrick

Executive Director/Secretary

With 25 years of leadership experience, Heather has been an asset to The Women’s Centre since joining as Executive Director in 2018.

Heather led the efforts to convert our shelter to a pet-friendly facility after learning that nearly 60% of abused women with animals, delay leaving out of concern for their pets. Heather has overseen the Adopt-a-Room campaign that allowed us to update all eight bedrooms and most common areas in the shelter. Under Heather’s direction, our team has grown to include a cook, clinical counsellor, and several anti-human trafficking staff in the newly launched anti-human trafficking youth program.

Heather loves to cook, garden and enjoys marathon running, and karaoke. Her family is currently raising their fifteenth guide dog puppy for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.

 
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Amy Deschamps

Director

As someone with lived experience of family violence, I was directly and positively impacted by the support of TWC when my family was in need as a young person. Through my own experience, I see the possibility and potential that exists when you create resiliency in women, children, and communities when you invest in their safety and

well-being.

In my work life, I manage programs for women experiencing homelessness and violence. I am kept on my toes by my husband, two children, and a houseful of animals. In my free time, I enjoy hiking, paddle boarding, reading, and yoga, as well as sharing laughs with friends and family.

 

Joining the board was a big accomplishment as I'd wanted to support and champion TWC initiatives and staff for some time. We support in developing and carrying out strategic planning through an intersectional anti-racist lens.

TWC understands the needs and priorities of the community and seeks to respond in meaningful ways. It has a trusted reputation and has strong and dedicated leadership which provide many different ways for community to feel engaged and connected.

 
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Erica Weppler

Director

As a parent to two young girls who are heading into high school and college in the near future, I want to be involved with a woman-centred organization.

 

When I'm not working as a Parent Support Worker with the Grey Bruce Health Unit, I'm spending time with my husband and two daughters. We enjoy hiking, running, camping, and caring for our two hedgehogs.

I volunteered for a sexual assault crisis hotline during high school and it motivated me to attend college to complete my Social Service Worker diploma. I later completed a co-op placement with the Interval House of Hamilton so I'm looking forward to bringing my understanding of gender-based violence to The Women's Centre board of directors.

 

We've been helping women and children flee abuse and violence for nearly forty years. I'm proud to be involved with such a well-respected community agency.

 
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Christine Stewart

Director

I think donors want to care for others and can see a real need that The Women's Centre clients have.

 

I started volunteering with The Women's Centre in 2019. I joined the Board of Directors to help ensure that women and their children have a safe place to be in times of need.

I introduced the Wine Survivor fundraiser in 2019. It was a fun event and turned out to be COVID-19 resilient. It was great to see it grow last year.

Outside of volunteering and running IT projects at Bruce Power, I hang out with my family in Owen Sound. I also have older children and grandkids in Alberta.

We love to travel and when restrictions are lifted and it is safe to do so, we will return to that. We spend a lot of time outdoors hiking and snowshoeing.

 
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Miranda Miller

Director

I think we probably all know someone who has experienced gender-based violence and that it takes an entire community to combat it.

 

I’m a writer/editor and marketer, Managing Editor of Search Engine Journal, the CEO of an enterprise creative agency and a local marketing agency, and proud mother bear to two sons, two Shepherds, and two budgies. My husband and I love traveling, canoeing, and camping adventures.

 

I’m on the Board of Directors, which helps ensure that the organization is meeting its goals and accountable to funders, among other things. The Women’s Centre was there for me when I needed it. I feel fortunate and grateful to be able to give back and help other women and their children who are escaping violence and need a helping hand forward.

 

I’m proud that the community has supported TWC’s recent renovations to help provide spaces where women and children fleeing their homes can feel not only physically safe, but cared for and respected, as well.

 
 
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Mary Lynne Kennedy-McGregor

Director

I learned about women's shelters, working in emergency nursing for several years. I joined the board because I wanted to learn more about the important work that The Women's Centre does locally.

I may be retired, but I keep busy! I'm currently taking an Indigenous History course through the University of Alberta. In addition to my board work with TWC, I sit on a variety of committees concerned with politics and conservation, and I am still involved with my nursing organization.

 

Outside of my course and volunteering, I enjoy spending time at my cottage and tending to my home garden which attracts loads of hummingbirds. I'm also my grandkids' biggest fan at their baseball, hockey, and lacrosse games!

This summer, I helped implement a COVID-19 rapid antigen testing program on-site at TWC, and saw first-hand, how valuable its services are in the community to women and children who are fleeing violence and abuse.

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Khrys Timmerman

Finance Manager

Khrys joined TWC in 2011 and is responsible for ensuring the agency's financial health and accuracy of reporting.

 

She has two degrees from the University of Guelph and a business background. Her experience with finance and accounting has guided management and the board in making sound business decisions for both the short and long term. Khrys's past experience in construction has benefited TWC with her project management of various renovation projects over the years.


Contact: Khrys Timmerman
519-376-0755 x 105
khryst@thewomenscentre.org

 
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Paula Boswell

Program Manager

Paula manages programs in our VAW shelter and our anti-human trafficking youth program (OUR Place), where she ensures that service delivery is consistent with standards, policies and procedures and the mission, vision, and counselling model of The Women’s Centre Grey Bruce.

Since relocating to Owen Sound in 2018 to begin as our Program Manager, Paula has streamlined shelter operations and VAW programming by identifying and filling service gaps. She led the development of OUR Place and its programs, all while establishing strong relationships with community partners.

Paula's education, including an MBA as well as diplomas in Addictions & Community Work and  Social Service Worker, and her background in staff management, and experience working in unionized environments have proven invaluable to the organization.  In her spare time, Paula enjoys playing tennis, singing with her church choir, and relaxing with family.

 
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Carrie Stevenson

Fund Development & Communications Manager

Carrie is responsible for ensuring that revenue targets are met in the annual budget including corporate and community partnerships, individual donations, major fundraising events, direct mail programs, major gifts, and third-party fundraising. The Fund Development & Communications Manager oversees agency media, press releases, and other communications. 

 

Carrie joined The Women’s Centre in 2020 as the Fund Development & Communications Manager. Prior to joining our team, she performed a number of fundraising roles, with a variety of non-profit organizations. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two children and also enjoys playing soccer and basketball where she is continuously reminded that she’s not getting any younger.

 
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Jessica Ingram

Program Manager

Jessica manages our Second Stage, volunteer, and outreach programs including our Clinical Counsellor and  Family Court Support Worker. 

Jessica joined the Women’s Centre Grey Bruce in the Spring of 2021 as the Community Engagement Coordinator. She is currently completing her Master of Counselling Psychology (MACP) degree and is a Registered Psychotherapist (Q). Her passion is to offer therapeutic support to women who have a lived experience of bereavement, trauma, and terminal illness. Prior to this, Jessica lived in Toronto and held many leadership positions within the corporate world. Outside of work, Jessica enjoys spending time with her husband, and two young children.