The WOW seminar on immigrant women’s nutrition and health was a step in the right direction towards closing the gap between academic researchers and service providers.

Josephine Etowa
Associate Professor, School of Nursing, University of Ottawa
In our city’s history, immigrants have always played an important role. They build our economic prosperity, diversify our culture, contribute to our social vitality.

Jim Watson
Mayor of Ottawa
The work and expertise that OLIP brings to our community is so important as it helps us to build bridges and break down silos.  I look forward to our continued work together. 

Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa
My nomination is an indication that our hard work in building Canada is recognized. All we do is to serve the community in return for embracing us when we needed it.  

Mehdi Mahdavi
Ottawa Immigrant Entrepreneurship Awards Nominee
OLIP helps to unite and share scarce resources for greater impact by working together in the field of student education.

Walter Piovesan
Associate Director of Education, Ottawa Carleton District School Board
The target beneficiary of the work of OLIP is the whole community. In this short period we have planted together important seeds for Ottawa’s development.  

Dick Stewart
OLIP Council
The OLIP Council is committed to leadership.  In only a few years, we have a common vision and priorities, and are up to the task of implementing the Ottawa Immigration Strategy.

Salimatou Diallo
OLIP Council Vice Chair, Assemblée de la francophonie de l'Ontario
I was happy to see integration to Algonquin territory and indigenous culture related programming in 2014 WOW. Please continue to involve local Aboriginal organisations and…

Linda Manning
WOW 2014 participant, Senior Fellow, University of Ottawa
The City of Ottawa will continue to play a lead role in the implementation of the Ottawa Immigration Strategy, just as we did in the founding of OLIP.

Steve Desroches
City Councillor and Deputy Mayor of Ottawa
I’m really impressed with the level of energy and commitment around the Health and Wellbeing table and look forward to continuing collaboration between OLIP and OPH.

Marcela Tapia
Ottawa Public Health

OLIP Council Members

Caroline Andrew

Director, Centre on Governance, University of Ottawa
Chair, OLIP Executive Committee and Co-Chair OLIP Socio-Civic Sector Table

Caroline Andrew is the Director of the Centre on Governance, School of Political Studies at…

Caroline Andrew

Director, Centre on Governance, University of Ottawa
Chair, OLIP Executive Committee and Co-Chair OLIP Socio-Civic Sector Table

Caroline Andrew is the Director of the Centre on Governance, School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa. She studied political science at the University of British Columbia (BA), Laval University (MA) and the University of Toronto (PhD).  Her research interests include urban development, municipal immigration and immigrant integration policies, gender and local governance, place-based policy and relations between community groups and municipal governments. Recent publications include: «Federal Policies on Immigrant Settlement» (2011) with Rachida Abdourhamane Hima in E.Tolley and R.Young, Immigrant Settlement Policies in Canadian Municipalities, McGill-Queens, p.49-72;  «Ottawa-Gatineau:Capital Formation » (2011) with Brian Ray and Guy Chiasson in Larry Bourne et al, Canadian Urban Regions: Trajectories of Growth and Change , Oxford University Press, p.202-235; «Federalism and Feminism: The Canadian Challenge for Women’s Urban Safety» (2010) in Melissa Haussman et al. Federalism, Feminism and Multilevel Governance , Ashgate,p. 83-96. Caroline Andrew is on the boards of the Lowertown Community Resource Centre and Women in Cities International and on the steering committees of the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership and the City for All Women Initiative in Ottawa.

Marcia Aronson

Citizen

Naini Cloutier

Executive Director
Somerset West Community Health Centre

Naini Cloutier is the Executive Director of the Somerset West Community Health Centre. She has extensive experience…

Naini Cloutier

Executive Director
Somerset West Community Health Centre

Naini Cloutier is the Executive Director of the Somerset West Community Health Centre. She has extensive experience in immigrant issues, community development and management. Additionally, she has participated in various community planning bodies and boards in the area of accreditation, evaluation, funding and the non-profit sector generally. Naini holds a Masters degree in Public Administration.

Saint-Phard Désir

Executive Director, Conseil Économique et Social d'Ottawa Carleton
Co-Chair, OLIP's Socio-civic Integration Sector Table

Born in Haiti, Saint-Phard Désir came to Canada in 1990. He completed his education at the University of Ottawa where he obtained a Master in Business…

Saint-Phard Désir

Executive Director, Conseil Économique et Social d'Ottawa Carleton
Co-Chair, OLIP's Socio-civic Integration Sector Table

Born in Haiti, Saint-Phard Désir came to Canada in 1990. He completed his education at the University of Ottawa where he obtained a Master in Business administration. In 2004, commissioned by the Department of Citizenship and Immigration, Saint-Phard was the author of the guide "Finding a job, practical guide for the French-speaking newcomers" to help French-speaking immigrants find work in their fields of expertise. Then he left Canada to work in different organizations including Lutheran World Relief in the United States. In February 2007, he returned to the Conseil Économique et Social d'Ottawa Carleton (CÉSOC). He was the Project Coordinator of the  Réseau de soutien à l’immigration francophone de l’est de l’Ontario for five years and since July 2012 he has assumed the general management of CÉSOC.

Leslie Emory

Executive Director
Ottawa Community Immigrant Services

Leslie has been the Executive Director at Ottawa Community Immigrant Services since 2013, before which she served as the Manager of Community Economic…

Leslie Emory

Executive Director
Ottawa Community Immigrant Services

Leslie has been the Executive Director at Ottawa Community Immigrant Services since 2013, before which she served as the Manager of Community Economic Development for the agency.  Prior to transitioning to the social services sector, she was the President and Co-founder of a company offering IT integration solutions to the private and public sectors across Canada. Leslie has a Masters of Social Work with a specialization in social service leadership. She is the President of the Board of World Skills Employment Centre, a founding and Executive Member of Refugee613 and the Eastern Regional Director for the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants. Leslie has a passion for social innovation initiatives addressing barriers to integration for newcomers to Canada.

Erin Fitzpatrick

Lawyer/Social Worker, Connecting Ottawa

Erin Fitzpatrick

Lawyer/Social Worker, Connecting Ottawa

Jane Fjeld

Associate Executive Director, Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa

Jane Fjeld’s current position is Associate Executive Director of Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa.  Her  previous work experiences have included being…

Jane Fjeld

Associate Executive Director, Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa

Jane Fjeld’s current position is Associate Executive Director of Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa.  Her  previous work experiences have included being the Provincial Youth Priority Knowledge Exchange Manager with Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, a 6 month secondment with the Roberts/Smart Centre as an Interim Executive Director, an 18 month secondment with the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long - term Care as well as being the Executive Director of the Eastern Ontario Young Offenders Services and the Executive Director of Elizabeth Fry Society of Ottawa.  Jane holds a Master Degree in Applied Criminology from the University of Ottawa.

Clara Freire

Manager, Partner and Stakeholder Initiatives Branch, Community & Social Services Department
City of Ottawa

Clara Freire is currently employed as Manager, Strategic Community Initiatives Branch, Community & Social Services Department, at the City of Ottawa.…

Clara Freire

Manager, Partner and Stakeholder Initiatives Branch, Community & Social Services Department
City of Ottawa

Clara Freire is currently employed as Manager, Strategic Community Initiatives Branch, Community & Social Services Department, at the City of Ottawa. In this capacity she manages various community engagement and strategic initiatives. She is currently responsible for managing the City’s role in the Community Development Framework, development of the City’s Older Adult Plan, the Aboriginal Working Committee and other initiatives such as the Equity and Inclusion Lens implementation.  Clara has worked for the City for over 11 years and, prior to her current position, worked in the area of housing and homelessness both with the City and in the community. She has a Masters Degree in Social Work.

Dora Gdoura

Manager, La Cité collégiale

Dora Gdoura

Manager, La Cité collégiale

Lynn Graham

Private Citizen

Lynn Graham is the past Co-Chair of OLIP’s Education Sector Table. Lynn Graham’s current volunteer community work includes membership on the Board…

Lynn Graham

Private Citizen

Lynn Graham is the past Co-Chair of OLIP's Education Sector Table. Lynn Graham’s current volunteer community work includes membership on the Board of Directors of the Youth Services Bureau and the Board of Directors of the Champlain Community Care Access Centre, where she was chair from 2008 to 2012. For twelve years, until 2006, Lynn was a school board trustee, first with the Ottawa Board of Education and, following amalgamation, with the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board. She played a key role in the establishment of the OCDSB’s Advisory Committee on Children and Youth at Risk and she served three terms as chair of the OCDSB. She has held volunteer governance positions with other organizations, including the Parent Preschool Resource Centre, Child and Youth Friendly Ottawa, and Christie Lake Kids. Lynn’s post graduation employment was with CUSO. She was a secondary school teacher in Ghana, West Africa, and later a staff member of the CUSO national secretariat in Ottawa, administering the programs in West Africa and assisting CUSO committees at Canadian universities and colleges. In subsequent years, Lynn became a federal government employee with the Department of National Health and Welfare and afterwards with the Department of Manpower and Immigration. Lynn holds a Master of Social Work Degree. In 2012, she was awarded the Queen Elizabeth 11 Diamond Jubilee Medal.

Kristen Holinsky

 Executive Director
Alliance to End Homelessness Ottawa

Before joining the Alliance to End Homelessness Ottawa in 2017, Kristen worked as Director, Programs…

Kristen Holinsky

 Executive Director
Alliance to End Homelessness Ottawa

Before joining the Alliance to End Homelessness Ottawa in 2017, Kristen worked as Director, Programs and Strategic Initiatives with the Canadian Housing and Renewal Association (CHRA). CHRA is a national member based non-profit that advocates at the federal level on affordable and supportive housing and homelessness issues. Kristen oversaw the programming and communications of CHRA’s annual National Congress on Housing and Homelessness, as well as the association’s research, advocacy and online education programs. She also maintained and established partnerships with sponsors, members and stakeholders. Kristen holds a Master of Public Administration from Queen’s University, and an MA (UCL) and BA Honours (Carleton) in Cultural Studies. Kristen has also worked with the U.S. Embassy, Federal Government of Canada, National Gallery of Canada and City of Ottawa Public Arts Program. With a keen interest in grassroots community development, Kristen has also volunteered with the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa and Lowertown East Residents Committee, and currently sits on the Board of Directors at Interval House Ottawa.  

Susan Ingram

Executive Director, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ottawa

Susan Ingram

Executive Director, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ottawa

Abdirizak Karod

Executive Director, Somali Centre for Family Services

Abdirizak Karod has been the Executive Director of the Somali Centre for Family Services since 1995. Abdirizak believes without employment, integration…

Abdirizak Karod

Executive Director, Somali Centre for Family Services

Abdirizak Karod has been the Executive Director of the Somali Centre for Family Services since 1995. Abdirizak believes without employment, integration will be difficult for newcomers because communities are not intermingling and sharing their unique cultures; and this will create isolation for both the immigrants and host community. Therefore, through his work at the Somali Centre for Family Services, he has built a very outstanding network of different organizations and has advocated on behalf of the community to employ immigrants. While working full-time and raising his family, he went back to university to achieve his Masters of Project Management. He is also certified change management professional.

Marianne Kayed

Manager, Continuing and Community Education, Co-Chair, OLIP Language Sector Table
Ottawa Catholic School Board

Marianne Kayed is the Manager, Continuing and Community Education at the Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB). This role targets…

Marianne Kayed

Manager, Continuing and Community Education, Co-Chair, OLIP Language Sector Table
Ottawa Catholic School Board

Marianne Kayed is the Manager, Continuing and Community Education at the Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB). This role targets lifelong learning opportunities for everyone in a family. The portfolio includes overseeing the largest provincially-funded adult English as a Second Language (ESL) program in Eastern Ontario, the Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada program, the Adult Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS) program, International Languages (elementary) program, summer camps and fee-based programs. She delivers innovative non-credit programming for immigrants, including several ESL/Skills classes (e.g. ESL for Building Interiors, ESL for Home Support Worker, etc.) and LBS work-preparation programs (e.g. landscaping, retail and custodial preparation). With degrees in modern languages, applied linguistics, and certificates in database and risk management, she has spent much of her career in ESL and literacy of adult immigrants and refugees, both in southern Ontario and Ottawa. She is a recognized national expert in the area of Canadian language benchmarks, essential skills and occupational use of language and has worked on several projects to set national standards for both regulated and non-regulated professions in Canada. She was the Senior Program and Partnerships Manager at the Centre for Canadian Language Benchmarks for over a decade. During that time, she lead national and provincially funded projects/resources and research with various sectors including nursing, physiotherapy, audiology/speech language pathology, engineers, the IT sector, trucking, tourism and red seal trades. The work produced fair, valid and reliable language assessments and professional standards to help newcomers meet defined, clear communication expectations for professional licensure and safe workplace practice. From 2011-2013, she worked at the Federation of Medical Regulatory Authorities of Canada where she was Senior Manager, Policy, responsible for accreditation, risk management and educational programming. Currently she is a director on the Centre for Canadian Language Benchmarks Board (member of the risk management/auditing and official languages advisory committees). She sits on the OCSB leading and learning committee. Marianne is a member of Hire Immigrants Ottawa (public sector table), the Ottawa Community Coalition for Literacy and the Eastern Regional Partnership for Adult Educators.

Armand Kayolo

Program Manager, Rideau Rockliffe Community Resource Centre

Armand Kayolo is now working as Program Manager at Rideau Rockliffe Community Resource Center.  Before his graduation from Ottawa University, in 2003,…

Armand Kayolo

Program Manager, Rideau Rockliffe Community Resource Centre

Armand Kayolo is now working as Program Manager at Rideau Rockliffe Community Resource Center.  Before his graduation from Ottawa University, in 2003, in Social Services, he studied communication at St-Paul University/Ottawa while having another university degree in Psycho-education from his home country. As an immigrant, he came to Canada in 1995 and worked at St- Paul University/Ottawa as an Academic Counselor. He served, for many years, as a Community Developer before his actual position at the same Centre.  In 2010, he received the Community Safety Award from Crime Prevention Ottawa.  Serving his fellow community members is a passion for Armand.

Mercy Lawluvi

Executive Director, Immigrant Women Services Organization
Co-Chair, OLIP Language Sector Table

Mercy Lawluvi

Executive Director, Immigrant Women Services Organization
Co-Chair, OLIP Language Sector Table

Kenny Leon

Director of Communications, Ottawa Board of Trade

Kenny Leon joined the Ottawa Board of Trade as the Director of Communication in March 2011 and is responsible for…

Kenny Leon

Director of Communications, Ottawa Board of Trade

Kenny Leon joined the Ottawa Board of Trade as the Director of Communication in March 2011 and is responsible for the overall branding and communication of the organization, including its new initiatives to promote its advocacy efforts. Kenny has 18 years of experience in marketing and communications, both locally and internationally. He serves on several committees that actively advocate a diverse workforce in Ottawa.

Dawn Lyons

Director, Family and Community Health and Harm Reduction
Somerset West Community Health Centre

In February 2018, Dawn Lyons joined the Somerset West Community Health Centre as Director of Family and Community Health…

Dawn Lyons

Director, Family and Community Health and Harm Reduction
Somerset West Community Health Centre

In February 2018, Dawn Lyons joined the Somerset West Community Health Centre as Director of Family and Community Health and Harm Reduction. Her employment history includes more than 20 years of management experience with community-based non-profit organizations serving diverse communities. Dawn’s experience includes work as the founding Coordinator of three different community based programs in the Halifax area, as well as five years working with homeless and at risk youth through the city’s largest youth serving organization. After moving to Ottawa, Dawn was hired by Pinecrest-Queensway Community Health Centre in May 2005 to manage their large community services team and, subsequently, to spearhead the development and delivery of the Pathways Ottawa program. She has an Honors B.A. in International Development and a Masters Degree in Social Work.  

Barbara MacKinnon

Executive Director, Ottawa Children's Aid Society

Ms. MacKinnon has served the Ottawa community for over thirty years. Her passion for helping others has lead her to Executive Director positions at three…

Barbara MacKinnon

Executive Director, Ottawa Children's Aid Society

Ms. MacKinnon has served the Ottawa community for over thirty years. Her passion for helping others has lead her to Executive Director positions at three social and health organizations prior to joining the Children's Aid Society in 2003 as Executive Director. As an adoptive mom of two children, she was drawn to the Children’s Aid Society’s mission of protecting children and youth from abuse and strengthening families. Her primary goal has been to enhance the work of the Society by developing essential community partnerships to better support families in need and increasing family based care options, through foster, kin and adoption for children and youth in the care of the Society.  Ms. MacKinnon has first-hand experience responding to the changing demographics of Ottawa and her approach to working with diverse communities has positively impacted the organizations she has led.   She is active locally and provincially on a range of planning and co-ordination bodies to improve the service system for families. Her commitment to making a difference goes beyond her professional contribution as Ms. MacKinnon personally volunteers her time and expertise in various capacities. To name a few, she sits on United Way Committees, Chairs the Growing Up Great Initiative, and is on the Board of Directors of Crime Prevention Ottawa. Ms. MacKinnon has a Masters of Social Work and a range of business and management qualifications. Ms. MacKinnon has received a number of awards for example the Women of Distinction Award for non-profit management, the Dr. T.A. Sweet Award from the Ontario Psychiatric Association, the University of Alberta Alumni Honour Award for Outstanding Contribution by an Alma Mater.  Most recently she has received an honorary degree from Algonquin College and the United Way Community Builder Award as the Community Ambassador.

Elaine Medline

Vice-President, Communications and Engagement, Co-Chair, OLIP Health and Well Being Sector Table
Champlain Local Health Integration Network

Elaine Medline joined the Champlain Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) in 2006, and has contributed…

Elaine Medline

Vice-President, Communications and Engagement, Co-Chair, OLIP Health and Well Being Sector Table
Champlain Local Health Integration Network

Elaine Medline joined the Champlain Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) in 2006, and has contributed to a number of key LHIN initiatives in the areas of communications, mental health and addictions, and lung health. She became a member of the LHIN’s Senior Management Team in 2011. In addition to communications and community engagement, Elaine currently focuses on improving health services for immigrants and refugees, as well as Francophone communities. She is currently co-chair of the Health and Well-Being Sector Table of the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership. In addition, Elaine is now working with Indigenous partners on a number of health initiatives. From 1999 - 2006, she worked at Ottawa Public Health, developing policies and programs related to tobacco control, environmental health, youth programs, harm reduction and health-care emergencies. Elaine has degrees in biology and medicine from McGill University, and a journalism degree from Carleton University. She began her journalism career in 1991 as a reporter at the Charlottetown Guardian newspaper in Prince Edward Island, followed by a five-year stint covering health policy and medical innovations for the Ottawa Citizen newspaper from 1992 - 97.

Kelly Mertl

Director, Community Initiatives
United Way Ottawa

Kelly joined United…

Kelly Mertl

Director, Community Initiatives
United Way Ottawa

Kelly joined United Way Ottawa in the role of Director, Community Initiatives in 2013 where she works with volunteers and key community stakeholders on strategies for labour market inclusion of people with disabilities and newcomers in Ottawa.  Her portfolio also includes working with partners to help reduce social isolation of seniors. Kelly leads the Employment Accessibility Resource Network which includes over 105 organizations, all focused on helping people with disabilities find employment through employer education and other activities.  She also convened the sector around United for Refugees, a partnership with key community organizations including the City of Ottawa, who all worked together to raise and allocate funds for the sponsorship and settlement of people affected by the Syrian crisis. Kelly has over 25 years of talent acquisition, people management and training and facilitation experience in the private sector.  Her breadth of experience and expertise, particularly in recruitment, diversity and inclusion initiatives, has been driven by her passion and desire to help make change happen in our community.  

Hindia Mohamoud

OLIP Director

Hindia Mohamoud has close to twenty years of experience with building community solutions through research, partnership development, and program design. …

Hindia Mohamoud

OLIP Director

Hindia Mohamoud has close to twenty years of experience with building community solutions through research, partnership development, and program design.  She is currently the director of the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership, where she is responsible for facilitating the establishment and implementation of community-wide vision and strategy for improving the settlement and integration of immigrants in Ottawa.  Previously, she worked as the director of research at the Social Planning Council and as a director of impact and investment at United Way/Centraide Ottawa. Hindia’s academic background is varied - she holds a Master’s degree in economics from the University of Ottawa and various diplomas in business, management, technology, and communication.  She is also fluent in four international languages, including both official languages. Hindia is widely engaged with local social development process and activities.  For example, she is a member of the City for all Women’s Initiative (CAWI) and a regular volunteer at a local food bank.

Mike Molloy

Citizen

Michael Molloy is the co-author of “Running on Empty: Canada and the Indochinese Refugee Movement 1975-80” and has 40 years of experience in international…

Michael Molloy

Citizen

Michael Molloy is the co-author of “Running on Empty: Canada and the Indochinese Refugee Movement 1975-80” and has 40 years of experience in international and refugee affairs. Mike was Ambassador to Jordan (1996-2000) and Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process (2000-03).  As Director of Refugee Policy, 1976 -1978, he led design of the refugee provisions of the 1976 Immigration Act, including the Convention Refugee and Designated Classes, the private refugee sponsorship program and the WUSC refugee student program. In 1979 and 1980 he coordinated the Indochinese refugee program that brought 60,000 refugees to Canada. He was directly involved in the Czechoslovakian (1968) and Uganda Asian (1972) refugee movements, was Counsellor for Humanitarian Affairs at the Canadian Mission in Geneva 1981-84, and managed immigration and refugee operations in Jordan, Syria, East Africa and Ontario. He is President of the Canadian Immigration Historical Society.  

Dragana Mrdjenovic

Manager, Settlement and Integration Program
Ottawa Community Immigrant Services Organization

Dragana Mrdjenovic has worked for over 10 years in the immigrant-serving sector in language training and employment and recently as the Manager of the…

Dragana Mrdjenovic

Manager, Settlement and Integration Program
Ottawa Community Immigrant Services Organization

Dragana Mrdjenovic has worked for over 10 years in the immigrant-serving sector in language training and employment and recently as the Manager of the Settlement and Integration Program at the Ottawa Community Immigrant Services Organization. She is an avid advocate for personal and economic empowerment of immigrants through effective and timely interventions of community programming. As a relationship builder with innovative approach, she draws upon her professional and personal experiences as an immigrant and continuous learning from front line workers to improve how the sector engages and supports immigrants. Dragana has participated in numerous working groups, conferences, initiatives and encouraged creative dialogues in order to go beyond the status quo.  Dragana has a BA in Linguistics and Graduate Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language from Carleton University.

Alex Munter

President and Chief Executive Officer, Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario and Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre
Chair, OLIP Council

Alex Munter is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario and the…

Alex Munter

President and Chief Executive Officer, Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario and Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre
Chair, OLIP Council

Alex Munter is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario and the Ottawa Children's Treatment Centre, bringing more than 20 years of leadership experience in health and social services realm. He became Chair of the OLIP Council in 2016, after representing the Youth Services Bureau (YSB) and the Champlain Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) as an OLIP member. As the chair of the OLIP Council, Alex presides over multi-sectoral collaborations to strengthen Ottawa’s capacity to attract, settle, and integrate newcomers in all aspects of community life. Alex was Chief Executive Officer of the Champlain LHIN — the provincial government agency responsible for planning, integrating and funding health services in the region. He strengthened the region's health system by making strategic investments at hospitals and community-based agencies in all areas of our region. As Executive Director of the YSB, Alex grew the organization, adding services and expanding its reach. It won recognition for its ground-breaking work in addressing youth mental health issues and introducing measures to improve the agency's governance, efficiency and service quality. Prior to taking the three CEO roles in which he has served, Alex was a City and Regional Councillor in Ottawa for 12 years, including six as head of the city's health and social services. Alex has won numerous awards from a wide range of organizations for his contributions to the community and is a proud member of the Canadian College of Health Leaders.  

Carl Nicholson

Executive Director
Catholic Centre for Immigrants

Carl Nicholson is the Executive Director of the Catholic Centre for Immigrants (since 1994) and Executive Director…

Carl Nicholson

Executive Director
Catholic Centre for Immigrants

Carl Nicholson is the Executive Director of the Catholic Centre for Immigrants (since 1994) and Executive Director of the Catholic Centre for Immigrants Foundation (since 1996), overseeing an annual operating budget of $10 million and a staff of 100 people who serve 6,000 clients per year who are immigrants and/or refugees. A graduate of Carleton University and a Certified Fundraising Executive, Carl has an extensive background (40 years) in the not-for-profit sector in leadership positions. Carl sits on several boards including Local Agencies Serving Immigrants (LASI), Vice-President of World Skills, Past-President of the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants, Executive Member of the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership Council, Member of the Executive of Refugee 613 and member of the Ottawa Police Services Board. Carl has been recognized widely for his contributions to the community. In 2003 he was recognized by United Way/Centraide Ottawa with a Community Builder Award as part of the partnership with LASI. In 2004 he was given the Investing in People Award by the Community Foundation of Ottawa and was awarded the Diocesan Order of Merit by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Ottawa. In 2006 Ottawa Life Magazine named him one of the Capital’s 50 top people who make a difference. The National Institute of Jamaican Canadians presented him with the Lignum Vitae award in 2007. Carl was recognized by the Social Planning Council of Ottawa with the Marion Dewar Defender of the Public Good award in 2008. In 2011 he was the recipient of the Ottawa Community Leadership award bestowed by the “Dream Keepers” in honour of Martin Luther King Jr; the Mayor of Ottawa inducted Carl into the Order of Ottawa in 2013. More recently, the United Way presented him with a 2016 Community Builder of the Year award as part of a group which worked to receive Syrian refugees in Ottawa. In 2017 Carl received the Ontario 150 award for his work to improve the Ottawa Centre community. He was the recipient of an Honourary Degree from Algonquin College in 2018.        

Sylvie Ross

Executive Director, Parents partenaires en éducation
Co-Chair, OLIP Education Sector Table

Sylvie Ross’ involvement with community groups started at an early age. Most of her career was spent in the arts industry, media and publishing. She…

Sylvie Ross

Executive Director, Parents partenaires en éducation
Co-Chair, OLIP Education Sector Table

Sylvie Ross’ involvement with community groups started at an early age. Most of her career was spent in the arts industry, media and publishing. She has sat on many national and provincial boards of directors, travelling throughout Canada and abroad. Sylvie has worked at Parents partenaires en éducation (PPE) since 2011, and became its executive director in 2013. She has the privilege and opportunity to work with parents from the 12 French school boards across Ontario. PPE has a long standing relationship with school councils, which provides direct access to a network of parents.

A social worker by profession, Dick spent 33 years in municipal government in Ottawa in both front-line and senior management role, including as Commissioner…

Dick Stewart

Citizen

A social worker by profession, Dick spent 33 years in municipal government in Ottawa in both front-line and senior management role, including as Commissioner of Social Services with the Region of Ottawa–Carleton and General Manager of the People Services Department for the City of Ottawa. Since retiring in 2002, Dick has devoted his energy to community issues and the community service sector. He sits on the boards of the Sector Council for the Voluntary and Not-for-Profit sector in Canada, the Community Foundation of Ottawa, West End Legal Services of Ottawa, and The Council on Aging of Ottawa.  He is also on the Steering Committee of the Ontario Non-Profit Network.

Dennise Taylor-Gilhen

Vice President, Community Impact, United Way of Ottawa

As Vice President of Community Impact, Dennise Taylor-Gilhen is responsible for developing and implementing strategies that support effective planning,…

Dennise Taylor-Gilhen

Vice President, Community Impact, United Way of Ottawa

As Vice President of Community Impact, Dennise Taylor-Gilhen is responsible for developing and implementing strategies that support effective planning, resource investment, and partner and community relations that respond to Ottawa’s most pressing and complex social issues. Dennise first joined United Way Ottawa’s Community Impact team in 2003 where for four years she worked closely with community partners on issues related to Mental Health and Addiction, Poverty, and Crisis, returning in 2015 to join United Way Ottawa’s senior management team. With many years of experience working in the social services and health charity sector, she believes that it is only when we hold important conversations with our diverse and inclusive community that we are able to work better together and achieve positive change. Dennise has a Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Ottawa, along with a Bachelor of Education, and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Saskatchewan and in 2018, she became the first Canadian to graduate from United Way Worldwide’s Advance Leadership Program.  

Laurent Touchant

Agente de développement communautaire, Centre de ressources communautaires Rideau-Rockcliffe

Laurent Touchant

Agente de développement communautaire, Centre de ressources communautaires Rideau-Rockcliffe

Mengistab Tsegaye

Executive Director, Co-Chair, OLIP Economic Integration Sector Table
World Skills

Mengistab Tsegaye has worked over 25 years in the newcomer’s settlement and integration sector, and he was an immigrant himself.  He has a Social Work…

Mengistab Tsegaye

Executive Director, Co-Chair, OLIP Economic Integration Sector Table
World Skills

Mengistab Tsegaye has worked over 25 years in the newcomer’s settlement and integration sector, and he was an immigrant himself.  He has a Social Work background and extensive experience in employment issues and the challenges newcomers face. Mengistab's past and present settlement and community involvement includes:
  • Board member, Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI),
  • President of the Eritrean Community of Ottawa,
  • Member of the Ontario works monitoring committee,
  • Board member, Ottawa Carleton Housing Authority,
  • Chair of settlement .org,
  • Chair of Algonquin College Community Collaboration Committee, and
  • Member of the Employer council of champions in Ottawa.
Mr. Tsegaye is co founder and Executive Director of World Skills,  an organization that provides employment services to newcomers in Ottawa.

Mark Zarecki

Executive Director, Jewish Family Services

Mark Zarecki, MSW, RSW, is a graduate from the McGill School of Social Work, as well as the Institutional Administration program at ConcordiaUniversity. …

Mark Zarecki

Executive Director, Jewish Family Services

Mark Zarecki, MSW, RSW, is a graduate from the McGill School of Social Work, as well as the Institutional Administration program at ConcordiaUniversity.  His 22 year tenure with the Hillel Jewish Students Organization saw him actively involved in both the Ethiopian Jewry movement and the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry, where he helped  hundreds of refugees find sanctuary in Canadian Jewish communities as well as in Israel. Presently the Executive Director of Jewish Family Services of Ottawa, Mr. Zarecki initiated the Ottawa Jewish community’s poverty relief initiatives, and a full service seniors social service department.  As a partner in the Local Agencies Serving Immigrants coalition, Mr. Zarecki helped to create, develop and supervise the World Skills Employment Project for New Canadians, which is now an autonomous organization with its own budget. When it became a stand-alone agency Mr. Zarecki became Vice President. As well, Mr Zarecki was awarded the 2003 Queen’s Jubilee medal for his contribution to social service in Canada. Mr. Zarecki has also gained recognition for his mentorship of the Somali/Muslim community of Ottawa, which recently won the highly prestigious 2003 Award of Excellence from the Canadian Race Relations Foundation for innovation and success in combating racism in Canada. He is currently involved in developing agency-to-agency relations with the Shia Muslim community. Mr. Zarecki is fluent in English, French and Yiddish.