Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North’s Board of Directors is a group of dedicated community and business leaders. Their strategic decision-making and guidance steer the organization. Each board member offers knowledge of their area and unique skill set for tackling the issue of affordable housing in our region.
Michael brings over 25 years of experience including Operations, Sales, Business Development, and Product/Service Development and a proven track record in Enterprise Account Management. He is a skilled client relationship and business development expert with extensive experience in growth and retention. Michael is versatile, innovative and driven with a proven track record for strategically growing both services and revenue. He specializes in developing and nurturing mutually beneficial long-term relationships with clients based on trust and repeated success at delivering value. Michael was a director of Anaphylaxis Canada for 20 years and for ten years served as its Chair. He has also served as director for the Canadian Marketing Association, and is an honourary life member. Michael is thrilled to use his business experience to give back to the community through Habitat for Humanity.
A retired Chartered Accountant who spent several years working as Comptroller for one of Canada’s largest retailers. Specializing in Corporate tax and Sales tax matters Jim was an independent consultant for many years. Clients included just about every large retail company in Canada as well as several cable and internet companies.Jim’s last venture was running a small start up company developing some technologies to reduce energy consumption in the Cable industry. Since retiring he is involved as a volunteer as club captain at a local golf course, as a member of the Committee of Adjustment for Seguin and with Habitat Parry Sound where he is member of the steering committee and has worked on the build and several fund raising initiatives.
BJ Szabicot is first and foremost a husband to Carol, and a father to three pre-teens. BJ is a partner in Szabicot Creative - a bespoke design firm operating from North Bay, Ontario that provides creative solutions for print and digital communications, as well as providing technical support for film and TV productions. Prior to establishing Szabicot Creative, BJ spent 5 years with Nipissing University in North Bay as their Web Communications Officer, 1 year with New Brunswick Community College in Miramichi as their Webmaster and an instructor in their web-oriented programs, and over 5 years in and about Toronto working in the software and design industries. As a volunteer with local non-profits and committees, in particular Habitat for Humanity, and having run for city council in North Bay a number of times, BJ is well aware of the challenges facing not-for-profit organizations - in particular inter-agency communications and use of public (i.e. donated) funds. BJ brings a history of practical experience in IT management, communications, marketing, media relations, and governance to the Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North board.
Claudette Strom serves as the Branch Manager at the downtown Sudbury Credit Untion. Strom has decades of experience and leadership within the financial sector of Ontario's north. She is a graduate of Laurentian University, Cambrian College, and Sir Wilfrid Laurier University. Strom has volunteered and been involved with a wide variety of organzations including the Lions Club, Co-operative Young Leaders Camp, The United Way, Children’s Aid Society Bursary Fund, and the Sudbury Annual Blueberry Festival. Strom currently sits on a number of not-for-profit boards including the Downtown Sudbury Indie Cinema Co-Op, Coniston Lions Club /Treasurers Award, and Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North. Strom's leadership and volunteer effort was recently recognized by the City of Greater Sudbury with the presentation of a 2016 Civic Award for Volunteerism.
Brian Ternoway is a Partner in ProFitness Advisors Group Limited, a management consultancy focused on helping clients solve complex business problems, through innovation. Prior to forming his own firm, Mr. Ternoway held several senior management positions with IBM Canada Limited. Mr. Ternoway is an experienced management consultant and has over twenty five years of experience helping clients solve business problems. He specializes in general management issues and the transformation of enterprise business models utilizing a customer-focused philosophy, innovation tools and information technology solutions. He has experience in strategic planning, business operations, process reengineering, sales management, market and product development and the professional training/development area. Mr. Ternoway gained this experience over a 31 year period with IBM Canada Limited, dealing with the Retail and Consumer Goods, Finance and Insurance, Government, Education and Transportation industries. Brian has been involved with Habitat for the past 6 years. While at his cottage in Torrance each summer, he has volunteered 2-3 days per week on build sites across Muskoka.
Murray Bieman first retired in 2004 after years of work as a Project Manager for an international manufacturer of wastewater treatment systems and equipment. During his career Murray supervised installations throughout Canada and the United States of America.
Murray “unretired” in 2008 and joined a big-box building supply retailer as a part-time sales associate and is still employed in this capacity.
He began with Habitat for Humanity as a build volunteer with the Orillia Lake Country legacy affiliate in 2006. Murray later participated in four additional local Habitat builds – as well as the first ReStore reno. He served on the ReStore committee in 2010-11 and was involved in planning and securing funding for its first location.
Murray was elected Vice-President of the Orillia affiliate at the time of regionalization and helped guide in the formation of Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North.
In his spare time, Murray builds props and sets for the Coldwater Village Players Theatre company. He has a diploma in Mechanical Engineering from Ryerson University and subsequent Graduate Studies in Business Administration at McMaster and Wilfred Laurier.
Rick is a former IBM executive with over 45 years of extensive project delivery, business development, sales, and general management experience.
He played a leadership role in the development of IBM Canada’s Business and IT consulting business and until his retirement from IBM in 2007, led IBM Canada’s Business and IT Strategy / Architecture Consulting practice, responsible for clients in Canada and the Caribbean North District.
As a Retiree-on-Call for IBM he has supported Financial Institutions in the Caribbean across various aspects of business and IT strategy and process improvement.
Rick owns a Home Hardware store in Ayr, Ontario and continues to consult periodically to financial institutions in the Caribbean Region.
He is a founding board member of Lake of Bays Renewable Energy Co-operative (LOBREC) and is currently a director and Treasurer. Lobrec has over 200 members and recently installed a 50KW solar system on a community arena, with the net profits being returned to the local community.
Rick is also a volunteer bookkeeper for the Fourth Pig Worker Co-op, a not for profit building and renovation company which builds environmentally friendly and people healthy homes, and on the Advisory Board of the Muskoka Discovery Centre in Gravenhurst.
Rick has a home in Toronto but spends most of his time in Muskoka.
Linda is a results-focused professional with in-depth knowledge and understanding in human resource and operations management, encompassing interpersonal relations, workforce development, cultural diversity, and employment equity.
She has managed at the most senior level in both the public and the private sector.
Bruce Clark has enjoyed a more than forty-year career in the credit card and financial services industries in Canada in a variety of executive management positions. He has specialized knowledge in the areas of leadership development, risk management and corporate governance frameworks.
In his most recent assignment, Bruce served as President and CEO of Rogers Bank (retired March, 2016) and in that role, has directed the market launch of two new consumer credit card products. As Senior Vice President, Financial Services with Rogers Communications Inc., he managed the internal project plans, assembled the required resources and governance controls and worked with OSFI throughout the application process to obtain the necessary approvals to permit the launch of Rogers Bank in Canada.
Before joining Rogers, Bruce was President and CEO of Citi Cards Canada Inc. where he managed Citibank’s private label and bank credit card businesses for more than five years. Bruce was also Chairman of the Citi Cards Canada Board.
Prior to that role, he was Chief Executive Officer of Sears Canada Bank and Senior Vice President of Sears Canada Financial Services. As Business Leader, Bruce directed the application process and strategy to enable the launch of Sears Canada Bank as well as the successful sale and transition of the card portfolio to JPMorgan Chase Bank.
Bruce was also President and Chief Operating Officer of National Retail Credit Services (Wells Fargo Finance) which provided private label card services for numerous Canadian retailers.
He is a past member of the Campaign Cabinet for United Way of Peel Region and has served as a member of the Citibank Canada Board and Corporate Governance Committee. He was previously a Director of the Canadian Marketing Association and is a past President of the Credit Association of Canada as well as a past Advisory Board member of MasterCard Canada and Equifax Canada Advisory Coundils. He also served as Board Chair of the Provider Capital Inc. for several years.
He completed the Corporate Director’s Program and received his ICD.D designation through the Rotman School of Business, University of Toronto in 2011.
Stephania a Sikora is an associate at Valin Partners in North Bay, Ontario. She primarily practices family law and child protection law, as well as real estate and wills and estates.
She is originally from Guelph and completed her undergraduate degree in international development and forestry. She attended the dual law degree program at the University of Windsor and the University of Detroit Mercy, graduating magna cum laude with honours. She also was awarded the Dual J.D. Program Excellent Scholarship Award, and two book awards in recognition of academic excellence and service to school. Stephania volunteered during law school through the Can-Am Indian Friendship Centre of Windsor as a court worker. Furthermore, she volunteered as chair of the Moot Mentorship Committee providing guidance to incoming law students regarding moot court competitions.
After graduation, Stephania moved to Peace River, Alberta to start her career, practicing primarily in family law and criminal defence law. In Peace River, she was a board member of the Peace River Alberta Victim Services Unit providing fundraising services to help with the Victim Services Unit. After spending some time in Windsor, Ontario at a small law firm, she moved to North Bay.