Board of Directors and Staff

2018-19  Board of Directors

Sacha Deelstra – Chair

  • Sacha joined the WECAN board in 2015. Having worked as a human services worker in the inner-city of Edmonton for the past 7 years, her work experience includes facilitating community food programs and an emergency food program. Sacha is passionate about food security and community development. In 2016, she completed a MA in Community Development.

Keith Kasha – Vice Chair

  • Keith joined the board in 2009 at the suggestion of his friend.   Keith also volunteers as a member of both the 9th Street Players and SEESA’s Accidental Drama Club. Keith is a volunteer Character Interpreter at Fort Edmonton Park, playing Johnny J. Jones on the 1920’s Midway. He has a background in computers and food services and has been employed at the Winspear Center since 2010 as a Guest Services Representative. Keith loves to cook and bake and collects recipes as a hobby.

Dawn Arnold – Secretary 

  • Dawn is a retired teacher and school administrator who worked within with Battle River School Division for 30 years.  She has attained an Alberta Journeyman Certificate as a Partsman, a Bachelor of Education degree in Industrial Arts, minoring in Mathematics from the University of Alberta, and a Masters of Arts degree in Educational Leadership from San Diego State University.
  • Dawn served as secretary and president of the Battle River Local of the Alberta Teachers’ Association, and served on several ATA and Alberta Education committees over the years.  Additionally, she was the secretary of the Battle River – Crowfoot Riding of the Federal Liberal Party and served as treasurer for the Tofield-Ryley & Area Food Bank Society (TRAFBS).  Presently Dawn is serving her second year as president of the TRAFBS and also volunteers her time as a certified Advocate with Beaver County Victim Services.  Whenever needed, she volunteers with the Canadian Mental Health Association – Edmonton, and serves as a Casino-Angel to assist charities that are unable to obtain enough volunteers to run their casinos.  On a personal note, she is a fanatical life-long learner and a dedicated mom to 3 rescue dogs.
  • Dawn joined WECAN when she and another Food Bank volunteer realized their Food Bank was serving very few seniors in a town highly populated with elderly citizens.  The Tofield Depot was formed in October of 2016 with a vision of serving at least 15-20 seniors in the area and giving them an opportunity to obtain fresh food at the end of the month when their financial resources have been depleted, all the while maintaining their personal pride.  With much advertising and a terrific article in the local newspaper, this vision was immediately surpassed.  The Tofield Depot presently has 66 people signed up for hampers, 51 of those are members in good standing, and 42 are seniors.

Samantha Frampton – Treasurer

  • Samantha has completed undergraduate degrees in both Economics and Accounting and has been involved in budgeting and strategic business planning processes for several nongovernmental organization (NGO) boards. She has experience in several accounting and cost control positions and has completed all prerequisites for entry to the Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) Professional Education Program which she will be pursuing after completing her Masters of Business Administration (MBA) in 2019 at the University of Alberta. Further to accounting experience she has years of work experience in quality management positions in the publishing industry and then working on industrial multi-billion-dollar projects throughout Alberta and British Columbia.  Samantha has special interests in strategic planning and financial management and is excited to contribute to the long-term success and sustainability of WECAN Food.

Paige Nelson –Director at Large

  • After her retirement from her position of Executive Assistant with a major road construction company in 2009, Paige became involved with WECAN at the suggestion of her neighbour, a founding member of the WECAN Food Basket Society.
  • Paige’s career in administration has given her the skill required to contribute to WECAN at her local depot (Strathcona), on the Board of Directors, and for writing WECAN’s monthly newsletter.
  • Believing that the food security of each individual in society is a right, not a privilege, she is always willing to share her knowledge and expertise as requested.

David Berger – Director at Large

  • David oversees the Beyond Food program at Edmonton’s Food Bank.  Beyond Food is a partnership of seven non-profit agencies that deliver employment readiness, literacy, personal counselling, money management and housing information.  Prior to that he was project lead for Pregnancy Pathways: a service that is offering housing and support for pregnant homeless women.  For eight years, he worked at Boyle Street Community Services as deputy executive director after having left ATCO Electric as Manager, Aboriginal Affairs.

Jonna Grad – Director at Large

  • Jonna has over 20 years of experience volunteering, working and leading nonprofit organizations working towards social change.
  • She brings her experience/knowledge of collaboratively developing strategic plans that link closely to operational planning to get actionable results and financial experience developing diverse funding streams that she wants to contribute to WECAN Food Basket Society.  She is the Executive Director of St. Albert Seniors Association and the former Executive Director of Centre for Family Literacy.

Amina Shaikh – Director at Large

  • Amina  has a Bachelors in Architecture and is very active in her community, serving on the Parent Advisory committees at her children’s schools as well as participating in her cultural community. She has great passion to help her community at large and has been involved in many Social Services projects working as a dedicated volunteer of Islamic Family and Social Services Association. Amina has played an  instrumental role in the partnership between IFSSA and WECAN to open halal depots as a Halal Food Basket Coordinator.

Christine McVea- Director at Large

  • Christine brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to WECAN Food Basket having served as a board member, chair and then Program Manager and a volunteer at one of our WECAN depots over the past 10 plus years.  Christine has a lifelong interest in food security.

    Christine holds a Bachelor of Education, Bachelor of Social Work, and Masters in Social Work and is currently employed part time.

 

Staff

Suzanne Rigsby – Program Manager

Merlyn McKay-Barbeau – Office & Program Support  Coordinator