Staff & Board
Executive Director (on parental leave): Tara Templin
Director of Business Operations: Anouk Bertner
Program Coordinator: Chelsea Hillier
Program Coordinator Assistant: Jane Fysh
French Program Coordinator: Janine Messadié
Program Instructor: Belkis Navas
Production Manager: Shirley Jaunai-Winter
EcoEquitable Inc. is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors:
Chair: Heather George
Heather is a consultant for Avenai, an IT services and business consulting company. She has valuable work experience in IT strategy, delivery and transformation for both government and not-for-profit sectors. She has previously worked in Finance at Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and in Communications at Sustainable Prosperity, a local green economy think-tank. She graduated with distinction from Wilfrid Laurier University with an Honours Bachelor Degree in Business Administration, specializing in Business & Sustainability. Heather is extremely interested in the interdependencies and opportunities between business, society, and the environment. She is an indoor cycling instructor and enjoys hiking and playing volleyball.
Director: Robin Whitford
After leaving a stressful job a few years ago, Robin was on the hunt for a new direction in her life. She had always felt a calling to the creative world, but had not yet tapped into her potential. Luckily she found EcoEquitable and was able to take part in the Sewing for Jobs program. Following this 6 month program Robin was empowered to start her own sewing business and that is when Sew Crazy was born. She specializes in custom machine embroidery services and she loves to help clients create unique embroidered gifts. Robin also has an ever growing line of hilarious embroidered flour sack towels.
Robin lives in Orleans with her husband, 2 awesome kids and 2 furbabies.
Treasurer: Kandia Barry
Director: Daniel Brunet
Daniel is a Senior Client Support Consultant and Canada Team Lead for Promega Corporation. He earned a B.Sc. (Honours) and M.Sc. in Biochemistry at McGill University (McGill Cancer Centre), focusing on the role of phosphatases in the nucleus. After Graduate School, Daniel joined Promega Corporation as their first Canadian Field Applications Specialist where he was responsible for Business Development. In his current position at Promega, Daniel leads the Canadian Client Representative team and he also continues to interact with researchers across several Market segments, from Universities/Hospitals and Government Research Facilities to the Pharma/Biotech/CRO Industry. He is honoured to be a part of the Board of EcoEquitable and to contribute his knowledge of Business Development in the areas of strategic planning, opportunity prioritization, and customer engagement.
Director: Jessica Boissonnault (on leave)
Director: Sarada Sivaswamy-Leclerc
Sarada Sivaswamy-Leclerc born in Singapore has lived and traveled in several countries in Asia, Africa and the Americas. Exposure to these countries, places and events coupled with 25 years of International Development experience have introduced her to new ways of thinking, great ideas and global concepts that have shaped who she is today. A lover of all things sewing and fabric related she is a Professional Sewer wannabe. She can be found attending classes at Richard Robinson School of Fashion Design, and pouring over countless books, articles, and magazines, in an attempt to chase down and capture the ever elusive “perfect fit”. All, while gracing the aisles of fabric stores, and leafing through endless pattern catalogues in search of the perfect pattern and fabric for her next sewing project. She enjoys any project/volunteer work that will bring her in contact with sewing enthusiasts and colleagues in the community.
Director: Thierry Kasende
Thierry Kasende is the founder and creative director at PRIDE AND EGO, a men’s lifestyle brand. After having spent 10 years in the retail fashion industry, attending fashion courses at Richard Robinson, and studying business, he quit his job to move to Cape Town South Africa. Partnering with a local studio, he designed and produced PRIDE AND EGO’s first capsule collection. Today his company is based in Ottawa, producing made to measure men’s suiting, and offering various styling services. Having immigrated from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Africa is close to his heart. This lead him to volunteer with CACHA, Canada Africa Community Health Alliance, and to seek out opportunities helping people who are new to Canada find a sense of community. In his spare time Thierry loves spending time with his son, enjoys playing basketball, and meditates regularly.
Ex-officio/Director of Business Operations: Anouk Bertner
Anouk has worked in social enterprises, non-profits, and sustainability for the past 10 years. She loves to tackle complex problems with system thinking to tease out new win-win solutions. She has worked at EcoEquitable intermediately as the Director of Business Operations and Interim ED for the last three years. Anouk has an MBA and a degree in Physiology. She enjoys well run public transit systems and hates red tape.
Ex-officio/ Executive Director: Tara Templin (on leave)
Tara immigrated to Canada ten years ago, having previously worked in public policy, social services and community development in Chicago, Washington D.C., Venezuela, Honduras and Vietnam. In Canada, Tara began her work with the Community Health and Resource Centres in Ottawa, and became the Executive Director of EcoEquitable in 2010. In 2015/2016, Tara completed a “Women in Leadership” community economic development Program with the Canadian Women’s Foundation. A dedicated non-profit and social enterprise professional, Tara continues her work at EcoEquitable and finds this diverse community of women incredibly inspiring and motivating.