Ottawa-Carleton Lifeskills is led by a strong and dedicated volunteer Board of Directors. Our Board members bring many years of business and non-profit experience, which have proved invaluable to the growth and success of the agency.
Board of Directors
Board President – Miriam Fry:
Education: B.A. French Literature, Carleton University, M.A. Public Administration, Carleton University, Certificate, Fundraising Management, Ryerson University
Employment: Previous Executive director of Families Matter Co-operative. Miriam was one of the authors of “Ending the Wait”, which led to the province’s Housing Task Force. Before that, Miriam spent over 25 years at the CBC, as a journalist and journalistic manager. Volunteer activities include Committee Development Chair and a Vice President of the Council on Aging of Ottawa and Board Member. In addition to President of OCL’s Board, Miriam sits on the Advisory Committee of Doors Open Ottawa and was a long-time volunteer English language tutor.
Fun Fact: Green eyes, left-handed and very nosy. That probably makes Miriam part of a very small percentage of Canadian women.
Jack Stilborn (Vice President)
Education: Ph.d (political philosophy) from the University of Western Ontario, degrees from Oxford University (Politics and Philosophy) and the University of Saskatchewan (Political Science, English Literature).
Employment: Retired Principal Analyst, the Library of Parliament Research Service following a career working with parliamentarians on issues of constitutional politics, public administration and parliamentary governance. Previously worked at Treasury Board Secretariat, Public works and Government Services, Ministry of the Solicitor General and with the Ontario Ministry of Intergovernmental Affairs.
Fun Fact: Keeps busy cycling, kayaking and trying to write the great Canadian novel.
Joan Kavanagh-Wilson (Secretary)
Education: Graduate of Queens University
Employment: More than 40 years in the high-tech sector in a variety of roles and has an extensive background in risk, project and human resources management. Joan has served on a number of Boards and steering committees including the Canadian Toy Testing Council of Canada, the Ottawa Rotary Home, the Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre, CHEO, Bells Corners Co-operative Pre School as well as a number of School Councils.
Fun Fact: Joan is an advocate for individuals with disabilities as a parent of a son who was multiply disabled. She believes that everyone has a purpose in life and that it is our responsibility to assist individuals in finding their purpose and to enable them to fulfill it.
George Jacobson (Treasurer)
Education: MBA Finance John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, Certificate in Business Intelligence – Montreal Technical College.
Employment: Thomson Reuters Inc. – Quality Assurance , Montreal, Quebec, Consultant – Business Intelligence / Investment, Montreal, Quebec and Denver, Colorado, Project Manager, Soluxions Inc., Denver, Colorado and Miami, Florida
Fun Fact: Antique Map collector, avid walker (preferably on the beach)
Susan Bihun (Member at Large)
Education: M.A. in Public Administration Carleton University, B.A. Carleton University
Employment: Principal with the Osborne Group (Toronto). Previous Director (East Region) Ontario, Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services. Susan’s volunteer experience has included Ottawa United Way, Hire Immigrants Ottawa, Nepean Ottawa Diving Club and the Canadian Amateur Diving Association (Ontario).
Fun Fact: Susan and her husband Gordon live in Ottawa (Orleans) and enjoy an active life at their cottage during the summer and skiing in the winter.
Education: A Juris Doctor and a Bachelor of Arts in history and political science, both from the University of Ottawa.
Employment: Michelle is a lawyer with the Department of Justice Canada, specializing in administrative and constitutional law.
Fun Fact: Michelle is an avid baker, and her ideal afternoon involves a good book and warm cup of tea.
Education: B.B.A. from Bishops University with a Concentration in Finance
Employment: Portfolio Management and Financial Advisor with Assante Capital Management Ltd, providing holistic financial guidance, market research and portfolio analytics to deliver a complete personal wealth framework.
Fun Fact: Married, 4 kids, with an expanding hobby farm (chickens, bees, goats, dogs and recently some cats). In his spare time, Andrew enjoys skiing, camping, woodworking, and chasing the next family adventure.
Education: Diverse array of post secondary education and background in Human Services, Project management, and Information Technology.
Employment: Senior Policy Analyst and Business Planning and Enablement Manger with Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada, a not-for-profit organization for Inuit women.
Fun Fact: Christine is from a large family of nine. Several of her siblings and family members are Nunavumiut (Inuit from Nunavut) and several siblings have various cognitive disabilities or physical disabilities. Christine enjoys activities with her family, connection to the land, and working on traditional women’s crafts.
Education: B.A., Sociology & Criminal Justice from the University of Guelph
Employment: Population Health Lead, Ottawa West Four Rivers Ontario Health Team. Meghann has developed a wealth of experience across several sectors over the past 20 years with strong relationships and ties within Eastern Ontario. She has worked on initiatives in the homelessness, community development, and mental health, addictions, and substance use health sectors. Her background is strongly rooted in community development and social determinants of health work within community services and regional systems planning.
Fun Fact: Meghann is an active volunteer, low maintenance nature lover, partner to a superhero and Mother to two beautiful boys.
Education: BA Communications, University of Ottawa
Employment: Regional Director, Eastern Region, Labour Market Programs, Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities; Manager, Municipal Services, Eastern Region, Ministry of Community and Children’s Services; Manager, Apprenticeship Branch Eastern Region. Robert has also held a variety of management and policy positions in the provincial government in Toronto, primarily in training and employment programs.
Fun Fact: Robert enjoys riding his motorcycle, especially on long trips, and enjoys cooking for family and friends.