The Hub of Social Services on the Coast

Staff, Board and Knowledge Philanthropists

Our Staff and Contractors

Cheryl McNicol, Executive Director

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Cheryl is an active, dynamic and highly respected leader on the Sunshine Coast.  She is best known for her business start-up expertise, advocating the value of diversity and inclusion to improve the landscape for women and girls, fostering community economic development, and co-founding the Sunshine Coast Self-Employed Women’s Network (SEWN).

Cheryl is passionate about mobilizing women to seek leadership roles, not only for themselves, but also to improve outcomes through equality in decision making. She is an experienced curator of community partnerships and ensures effective communication is the driver of continuous progress towards collaborative impact.  

She has over 35 years of leadership experience in the corporate, non-profit and small business sectors with expertise in business development, operations management, risk management, financial management, training and facilitation in a number of industries across Canada and the US. Her consulting business focuses on business start-up and development as well as project management. Cheryl has assisted hundreds of aspiring entrepreneurs to create a viable and sustainable business by sharing her business planning and financial planning expertise. She is a co-founder and enthusiastic supporter of the Self-Employed Women’s Network – Sunshine Coast, is a Director on the Sunshine Coast Credit Union Board, and is an active member of the Gibsons and District Chamber of Commerce.  

Kara McDougall, Program Manager

Kara originally hails from Vancouver and moved to Sechelt with her family in 2015. She has a degree in International Studies and Sustainable Community Development. Kara has over 10 years experience working in program and project management, community engagement and sustainability with the bulk of her time spent working at the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University. She most recently worked at the SCRD in the Solid Waste Division implementing waste reduction initiatives and programs across the coast.
 
Kara has two preschool aged kids and since arriving on the coast has been active as a member of the Les Petits du Pacifique Childcare Board and as a Dakota Ridge Nordics volunteer ski coach. She loves the natural beauty and community spirit of the coast.

Ken Carson, Community Legal Advocate

Ken has been a resident of the Sunshine Coast for almost 20 years and has more than 25 years of legal advocacy experience in the field of human rights, and, most recently, on the Indian Residential School file where he worked to ensure that Survivors of those schools receive fair compensation in Canada’s largest class-action Settlement Agreement.

He passionately believes in the principles of natural and restorative justice, reconciliation with First Nations and the empowerment of those people economically and socially marginalized. Speaking truth to power, ethical behaviour, the dignity and worth of all people, equality of rights, equal access to services, and the rule of law are, for Ken, foundational principles that ensure the well-being of communities and the resiliency of its social fabric.

Ken has also worked as a cross-cultural trainer/facilitator having worked with groups as diverse as former combatants from Northern Ireland, indigenous peoples from the Amazon Rain Forest and the Blackfoot culture of Southern Alberta. As the former manager of the World Heritage Site, Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, Ken recognizes the importance of the preservation of culture heritage for future generations.

During Ken’s ‘downtime’ he enjoys wildlife photography, computer art and gardening. He also volunteers with Seniors and is a member of the Advisory Planning Commission (Area E) for the Sunshine Coast Regional District.

Cari Miller, Community Overdose Crisis Response Team Coordinator

Cari is an active, energetic and creative individual with a passion for social and environmental justice issues. Her background includes working alongside young people in Vancouver, Prince George and Soweto to explore creative ways to prevent HIV in affected communities. Cari completed an MSc in 2002 and a PhD in 2006 from UBC.

Cari worked at a safehouse for street entrenched youth struggling with addiction in Vancouver during the mid 90s when the HIV epidemic first began affecting people in Vancouver’s downtown eastside. The experience of working at the safehouse made Cari decide to focus her graduate studies on exploring ways to make communities safer for vulnerable youth.

Cari obtained a position in the Faculty of Health Sciences at SFU in 2008 and became tenured in 2012. She taught undergraduate courses in health promotion, the international HIV/AIDS epidemic and adolescent sexual health. Cari brings a strong commitment to helping end the overdose crisis to her role as the Coordinator for the Sunshine Coast Overdose Crisis Response Team because not only is premature mortality tragic for loved ones, but it also has negative impacts on the health and well-being of our whole community.

She is very grateful to call a small hobby farm in Roberts Creek home, and shares it with her partner, their 2 youngest children, and many loved farm animals. Cari is an outdoor enthusiast and tries to bike, hike, run, ride horses and be outdoors as much as possible.

Michelle Bruecker, Seniors Initiatives Coordinator

Michelle Bruecker is a passionate advocate for seniors’ rights with a focus on intergenerational community building and the integration of technology in improving our ageing population’s quality of life. Michelle has 35 years experience as a leader in industry, the public and non-profit sectors.

Her career began as a Human Resources Manager before starting her own web design company. She has worked with RCMP Victim Services and later joined Vancouver Coastal Health’s Practice Support Program in Vancouver as lead for the North Shore, consulting, coaching and training family physicians to build capacity in their practices.

Since 2015 she is the manager of the Sunshine Coast Better at Home Program, supporting seniors’ ageing in place while remaining connected to the community. Over the years the program has received several grants which helped Michelle enhance the programs capacity such as Neighbourhood Meet & Greets, Tech Tutoring, and the development of a Seniors Resource Toolkit.

Michelle loves hiking in our local forests and mountains, circle singing, writing and swimming. You can also find her in her garden, which is her favourite performing art; respectfully nudging the landscape into a retreat for the body, mind and spirit.

Darcy Lawrence, Supervising Lawyer

Darcy Lawrence joined the Resource Centre as the Supervising Lawyer for the Community Legal Advocacy Program, funded by the Law Foundation of BC.

Originally from Edmonton, Darcy has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Alberta. He attended law school at the University of Victoria and has been practicing law as a litigator for 24 years. He began his career with the B.C. Crown Counsel office and for 5 years was a prosecutor in the Vancouver and Squamish courts. In 1997 he moved to the Sunshine Coast and the Sechelt Crown office.

In 1999 he left the Crown and since that time has practiced primarily in the areas of criminal defence, small claims and child apprehension at both the Provincial and Supreme court levels. He regularly assists Sunshine Coast residents who suffer from addiction and homelessness issues and he feels that his position as supervising lawyer is a natural extension of that work.

Connie Hill, Bookkeeper

connie-croppedConnie Hill is a bookkeeping expert with more than 40 years of successful experience in full-cycle bookkeeping. She has an extensive knowledge of accounting practices and procedures, as well as a substantial knowledge of a variety of computer applications, including Sage Simply Accounting, PCLaw, DropBox, Sync, Adobe Acrobat and Excel. She constantly strives to be on the cutting edge of the most technologically advanced methods for providing bookkeeping services. Connie offers clients exceptional professional service as well as absolute discretion and confidentiality. She has embraced the core values of integrity, innovation and professionalism and is dedicated to providing her clients with a service and excellence that is second to none.

Connie’s role with the Community Resources Centre is to provide full-cycle bookkeeping services to the Society. Connie lives in the heart of Roberts Creek on the Sunshine Coast of B.C. She has one daughter and a cat, both of whom she loves dearly.

Alison Taylor, Web Development Support

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Alison Taylor worked as a software developer for a variety of high-tech organizations in Vancouver before she and her husband fell in love with the Sunshine Coast and moved here. She started up her own web design firm and eventually he joined her in the business. Together they support a number of non-profits and small businesses with both online and print marketing.

Alison brings an unusual combination of a degree in Physics and Computing Science and a degree in Visual Art to her work as web designer and developer. She loves visual design and choosing colours, fonts and stock photographs. And if no one sells the feature a client needs, she can code it herself. But one of her favourite things about her job is helping clients identify their core message and the people they want to reach, and supporting them in the process of making that connection.

Alison is delighted to be able to assist the Resource Centre as they provide their valuable service to the community. When not in front of the computer, Alison enjoys painting in her studio, recreational dancing and gardening.

Our Board 2018-2019

Anne Titcomb, Co-Chair

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Together with Pat, Anne is Co-chair of the Board. She was a member of the Progress Plan management team and also provides human resources guidance and support to all Resource Centre staff. She is the liaison with Community Services with regard to the Memorandum of Understanding and the services it concerns. Anne is an active member of the Seniors Planning Table.

Anne Titcomb has been a board Member with the Sunshine Coast Community Resource Centre since 2006. Anne was drawn to volunteering for the Resource Centre by a strong interest in the initiatives and robust programs in place designed to support the community as a whole by supporting one person at a time.

Working with the Resource Centre is a departure from Anne’s previous volunteer experience which had mostly focused on advocacy for parks and recreation. With an emphasis locally, provincially and nationally, Anne spent nine years serving on the board of the BC Parks and Recreation Association, and is a Past-President, which engaged her in plenty of healthy conversations and hard work. She also was on the board of the Canadian Parks and Recreation Association representing BC and the Yukon. Both provincial and national organizations had a strong mission to “build healthy communities”.

Anne is a passionate believer in community development. Anne chaired the Parks Master Plan 2004 process and the Recreation and Parks Master Plan for 2014 process for the Sunshine Coast Regional District. She chaired the Recreation and Parks Services Advisory Committee for many years until the SCRD dissolved most Advisory Committees. She has been on the Grants Committee for the Sunshine Coast Community Foundation since its inception and has served six years on that board.  

Anne has lived on the Sunshine Coast year round since 2003 but, like numerous others, spent many summer vacations on the Coast before then. Born and raised in West Vancouver, Anne has lived her entire life in BC. Due to the friendly way of life, Anne knew she wanted to eventually settle here on the Coast, in the home on Soames she has owned since 1980. Anne continues to be drawn to the spectacular views and the welcoming people who live here; she knows that here on the Coast neighbours really are neighbours and the community is an involved and caring community.

After more than 20 rewarding years as a Legal Assistant, Anne keeps busy with four fabulous grandchildren and their wonderful parents. Active with a book club, a walking group and an eventful Bridge group, Anne also finds time to travel, with marvelous trips to Kenya, Italy and the Bahamas.

Pat Hunt, Co-Chair

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Pat Hunt is excited every day about the work accomplished by the Resource Centre. Being part of a committed and passionate staff and volunteer team delivering information and referral services in many forms to individuals and groups is never dull. She believes that working with the Resource Centre board and strong partners and funders is key to giving quality service to the community.

Pat joined the Resource Centre board in August 2011. Her personal goal is to help build capacity, influence positive change, and to strengthen the lives of the people who live here by finding funding and making the connections necessary to take action.

After spending 43 years living, working, raising three children and volunteering in Ottawa, Pat and her husband picked up stakes and moved to Sechelt in 2006 to be closer to family. Although very different from living in a big city, this community has so many benefits and has been welcoming from the very beginning. Pat loved her 35 years working in recreation and sport both at the municipal and national levels.

She is an avid golfer, curler, reader, cook, friend and traveller. Pat’s three beautiful children have also led to six wonderful grandchildren and being an active part of their lives is one of her greatest joys.

Hilary Estergaard, Treasurer

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Hilary holds the position of Treasurer of the Sunshine Coast Resource Centre Society. Hilary is involved in communications and marketing, including the current review of promotional materials and website upgrade and redesign.

Hilary Estergaard is a parent, grandparent and a world-traveler with a long history of giving back to her community!

Hilary got her first taste of community service working with the Downtown Eastside Housing Association with Libby Davies. Since moving to the Sunshine Coast, she spent 12 years on the board of Sunshine Coast Community Services, including two years as Chair. Hilary also volunteered on the PAC and District PAC, chairing that as well, while both her sons attended school.

In 1985 Hilary became a co-owner of Elite Travel in Gibsons where she has been able to follow her passion for travel and visit fantastic places across most of the globe. She has also been able to send hundreds of people on spectacular trips around the world!

Originally from the UK, Hilary learned her love for travel at an early age while moving around with her military father. She moved to Canada after meeting her now-husband in Spain in 1972. He lost his travelers cheques, she refunded them and he brought her home to Canada. Married in 1973, the couple built a home in Sandy Hook and moved here full time in 1978.

Hilary loves to read, go to Rolling Stones concerts, walk, ski, swim and, most certainly, travel to the very few places that she hasn’t been.

Sue Elliott, Secretary

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Sue’s board activities include a focus on communications and marketing. Sue provides monitoring of the Strategic Plan and team facilitation. Sue and Shari are the Resource Centre co-representatives on the Seniors Planning Table and Sue also chairs the communications and marketing action subcommittee for the Seniors Planning Table.

Sue Elliot’s resume of both paid work and volunteer contributions is quite remarkable. Sue, a board member with the Resource Centre since 2012, has an extensive history in education, psychology, staff development and leadership, which she is fortunately willing to share with the Sunshine Coast community.

As a lifelong, part time resident of the Sunshine Coast, Sue is well aware of the vast and varied needs of the people who live here. It is her honour to work on the board, moving the Community Resource Centre forward with the three flagship goals of Sustainability, Information and Referral, and Volunteerism. Sue relishes the constantly evolving nature of the organization; she knows that what offers the greatest impact is being responsive to the ever changing needs of the community that the Resource Centre serves.

In 2011, Sue retired from her lengthy and rewarding career with the West Vancouver School District and became a fulltime resident of the Sunshine Coast. Sue had several different roles with the school district; Learning Assistance Teacher, School Counsellor, Co-Chair of the District’s Professional Development Committee, and Coordinator of an induction and mentorship program for beginning and returning teachers.

Sue also has an extensive variety of volunteer experience. She has served three times as President of Learning Forward BC (formerly the BC Affiliate of the National Staff Development Council), as well as three years on the International Board of Learning Forward. Sue has been on the boards of the West Vancouver Family and Youth Justice Committee and the Seaview Addictions Agency. She also sat on the Executive Committee of the BC School Counsellors’ Association, serving two terms as president. Sue has participated in numerous projects and committees, and has facilitated numerous workshops on a variety of topics. She is also involved in a program that allows her the opportunity to teach English to girls in Tanzania.

When not volunteering or working, Sue can be found travelling, gardening, kayaking, cooking, enjoying wine, and gathering people around her table to engage in good conversation.

Hilary Griffiths, Director

hilarygriffiths-233wOriginally from Pembrokeshire Wales, Hilary and her husband emigrated with their two young children to Canada in 1978.  She lived and worked in Fort Mc Murray Alberta for 25 years as an Owner/Director of a Child Care Center. She volunteered as a Board member for Fort McMurray Family Social Services for 8 years, and served on the Keyano College Early Childhood Development Advisory Board for 20 years. During her time in Fort McMurray Hilary was heavily involved with supporting children and families, training students, parents and adults in Early Childhood Education on campus at Keyano College and through distance learning with two other Alberta Colleges.

Hilary moved to Gibson’s in 2003 when her husband retired.  In 2004 she started working for Sunshine Coast Community Services Society.  The positions she held during her 8 years with the organization included the Parent and Tot Program, Director of Early Childhood Services, and as Coordinator of the Sunshine Coast Child and Referral Program, (CCRR).  Through her roll as the Coordinator of CC , she provided further training through workshops and the annual CCRR child care conference.

Since retirement in 2012, Hilary coordinated the Progress Plan Child Care Action Team that brought community agencies together to find a solution for parents who are finding it hard to obtain non-traditional and infant and toddler child care on the Sunshine Coast. She is still involved with this work by volunteering at the Sunshine Coast Early Learning Council. Supporting children and families is of the utmost importance to Hilary and has been a focus of her career for the past 35 years.

Hilary likes to travel, especially to Alberta to spend time with her precious 4 year old grandchild and her two sons and their families. She likes to golf, quilt, read and garden.

Kira Sufalko, Director

Originally from Chicago, Illinois, Kira completed her undergraduate education at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, obtaining a business degree. She continued her graduate education at Duke Law School  in Durham, North Carolina and received a dual Juris Doctor/LLM degree.

Kira began her career as an attorney working for a law firm in Chicago, and then worked in-house for large corporations including IBM, Accenture, and ACCO Brands.  She focused on global contract negotiations, integration of corporate strategies, and setting corporate policy.  Kira also worked with Human Resources to manage employment issues and benefits, and worked with Sales teams, Administration and Finance to address risk management and conformance with legal guidelines.

Kira is excited to work with the Resource Centre and its employees, volunteers and directors  to continue the great work and service that the Resource Centre provides to the Sunshine Coast community.  The Resource Centre is positioned to make a difference in the lives of numerous individuals and groups, and she looks forward to making a positive contribution towards those efforts.  

Kira loves the natural beauty and serenity of Sechelt and enjoys playing golf, pickleball, hiking, bird watching, mushroom hunting and kayaking on the beautiful Sunshine Coast. She recently obtained Permanent Resident status in Canada, and lives in Davis Bay.

Shari Myhill-Jones, Director

Shari is a Registered Nurse for Vancouver Coastal Health who has spent her career supporting Seniors and their families. She started her career on the North Shore working in a Long Term Care home, discovering she had a passion for Dementia Care. She moved to the Coast with her three children in 2003 and was part of the team opening Christenson Village in 2006. She held various leadership roles including Site Manager until moving to VCH Home and Community Services in 2014.

It was there that Shari developed an interest in supporting Seniors to remain living independently in their homes as long as possible. She became a volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Society and co leads a Caregiver Support group. She also became a member of the Seniors Planning Table Steering committee.

In 2016, Shari returned to University completing a Master of Health Leadership and Policy in Seniors Care at UBC. Having a greater understanding of health policy and how decisions are made, together with her work on the Seniors Planning Table, led to her interest in becoming a Director with the CRC. She is currently the Co-chair of the Seniors Planning table and lead for new Seniors Initiatives.

Shari looks forward to continuing to serve the complex needs of Seniors on the Sunshine Coast through both her professional role as a Registered Nurse, and as a Director for the Coast Resource Centre.

Peri Clark, Director

Peri was born in Calgary Alberta but moved to Indonesia with her parents in her early teens. After graduating from the Joint Embassy School, Peri moved to Bali where she married, built a home, and ran a number of businesses.

Returning to Alberta, Canada with her three daughters in 1994 was a complete culture shock to the family. Peri was contemplating returning to Indonesia when she discovered the Sunshine Coast during a day trip with her brother, who was living in Vancouver at the time. Just over a year later Peri and her girls were living on the Sunshine Coast, which is now, and will always be “home”.

Peri holds a Business Administration degree, and is a certified Career Development Practitioner, as well as trained and licensed in Emotional Intelligence EQi® and Super Host ™Trainer.
After working as an Employment Counselor, Program Manager and Site Coordinator in the local employment centers, she decided to return to retail and is now the proud owner/operator of Molly’s Seaside Market.
Peri is always looking for opportunities to contribute her love of problem solving, business knowledge and vast network of community connections to making a difference in the community- especially around issues that concern our marginalized populations.

Jan Bird, Director

Jan came to live on the coast in Roberts Creek in 2015. After working and living around the world the Sunshine Coast is now home and she is looking forward to giving back to the community which has been so welcoming to her. Jan’s working life has always been focused on helping individuals, communities and grass root organizations overcome disadvantage and take more control over their own lives.

In Scotland Jan worked in community development, and in organizational development and training provision for not-for-profits. She has supported partnerships enabling organizations to work together, share resources and be able to respond to major policy changes. Jan was a Fellow of the Office of Public Management in the UK where she was able to develop innovative ways to engage with communities, service users, patients and carers. She has worked for both the Scottish Government and UK Government. In Scotland she helped develop and manage a knowledge hub on tackling poverty and urban regeneration and participated in cross Europe projects focusing on Social Return on Investment. Jan also worked for the UK Government as a policy team leader to carry out a policy review and then provide evidence based policy options to tackle deprivation in the poorest neighbourhoods.

Jan is a qualified Myers Briggs consultant and NLP practitioner. In the Dominican Republic, UK, New Zealand, and now in the Canada she mentors individuals to help them make life choices, improve their relationships, their ability to communicate well, and resolve conflicts. With not-for-profits Jan helps develop effective planning processes, team-building, engagement initiatives and evaluation.

Knowledge Philanthropists

Sandy McBride

sandy-croppedSandy recently resigned as a Board member but continues to share her skills as a Knowledge Philanthropist on a variety of Resource Centre initiatives. As its longest serving member, she is one of the historians of the Resource Centre. Her public speaking skills make her the go-to person for public presentations. 

Sandy McBride has been connected with the Resource Centre since prior to its formal inception when a needs assessment uncovered that the Sunshine Coast was in fact, in need of a Women’s Centre. Sandy was involved with establishing the Women’s Centre in 1992 and when its mandate changed in 2004 to serve the entire community – the Community Resource Centre. She has been active as a board member and volunteer off and on throughout that time.

In 1976, Sandy, who was working as a Recreational Therapist in Ontario, went skiing in Rossland, BC. It was there that she met her now-husband, Terry. Not long after, the couple moved to the Sunshine Coast, where Terry’s family has a summer house. Shortly after, their two boys were born, and in 1986 they moved to property in Robert’s Creek, where they live today. She and Terry became first time grandparents in the spring of 2015.

Sandy worked for 12 years with special needs children and then assumed the role of Executive Director of the Rockwood Centre in Sechelt. She and Terry were actively involved with their sons’ education in French Immersion and in working for the enhancement of recreation programs and facilities on the Coast. She is a founding member of the Sunshine Coast Community Foundation.

Sandy has been in Financial Services since 1995 and obtained the coveted Certified Planner Designation in 1998. Mostly self-employed as an Advisor through those many years, Sandy now works with the Sunshine Coast Credit Union at SunCU Financial Services.

Growing up in Ontario, Sandy learned to play bridge with her family. Since moving to the coast, she has taught others to play and still loves the social contact and intellectual challenge that bridge provides. She loves to travel the world and to “hit the slopes” with her family.

Marj McDougall

Marj McDougall has been an integral part of the CRC since 1996. Marj’s background in administration and bookkeeping coupled with her natural bent for numbers, lent itself well to her role as Treasurer until 2013.

Initially, Marj was drawn to the community connections the CRC was building upon and to this day, the caring, connected community is the very same reason she stays on the Board. The personal connections that she has made with the other Board Members during her tenure have also kept her an energized and interested contributor.

Marj’s other volunteer work includes being part of Habitat for Humanity’s recycling team and facilitation of a monthly brain injury peer support group in honour of her late husband. She is also drawn to anything “green” and is a strong supporter of the David Suzuki Foundation as well as other environmental interests.

A resident for 25 years, Marj has recently discovered more of what the Sunshine Coast has to offer in terms of access to hiking, biking and walking trails. When not at the recreation centre partaking in aquafit or aerobics, you may find her enjoying Tai Chi or Zen meditation.

Thanks to our other Knowledge Philanthropists who generously gift their time and expertise to support our organization:

Lucie McKiernan (Policy and Procedures)
Cayce Laviolette (Health)
Philip Fogarty (Social Media)
Jane Gladman (Strategic Planning)
Tracey Dear (Graphic Design)