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Board Profiles

The Board of Commissioners is committed to best practices in corporate governance.

This helps ensure that BC Housing is successful in meeting our mandate, implementing the government’s strategic direction and complying with provincial policies and legislation, including taxpayer accountability and performance reporting. BC Housing’s governance framework meets the Best Practices Guidelines for public sector organizations as set out by the provincial Crown Agencies Resource Office and the Board Resourcing and Development Office.

Cassie J. Doyle (Chair)

Appointment term: July 19, 2017 – July 18, 2022

Cassie Doyle is the CEO of the Canadian International Resources and Development Institute based at UBC, and has served as a deputy minister with both the federal and B.C. provincial government. She represented Canadian interests as Consul General in San Francisco and the Silicon Valley. Cassie started her professional career with the City of Ottawa Non-Profit Housing Corporation and spent a decade there in a variety of senior roles related to the policy, development and management of social housing. Returning home to B.C., she led the development of the Homes BC program as B.C.’s Deputy Minister of Housing, Recreation and Consumer Services from 1993 to 1996.

Cassie has extensive governance experience, liaising with a wide range of Crown Agencies in her role as deputy minister, and a long track record of serving on boards of directors, including Oxfam Canada, the Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association, the United Way in Ottawa and in San Francisco, the Atomic Energy Corporation of Canada, the Vancouver Affordable Housing Agency and currently the Alberta Energy Regulator. She has an Masters in Social Policy and Administration from Carleton University, 1983.

Faye L. Wightman, ICD.D

Appointment term: April 26, 2012 – April 26, 2019 (re-appointed April 26, 2018)

Faye Wightman was the president and CEO of Vancouver Foundation, Canada's largest community foundation, for eight years before resigning to start her own consulting business. Prior to joining Vancouver Foundation, she was president and CEO of BC Children's Hospital Foundation for 14 years and spent two years as vice-president of external relations at the University of Victoria. She has spent most of her career working in the not-for-profit sector after practicing as a cardiac nurse for seven years.

Faye is the chair of Alumni UBC and sits on the boards of Coast Capital Savings and the Vancouver Public Library Campaign Cabinet. She has been on a number of national, provincial and local boards in the not-for-profit sector. In 2014, she was appointed chair of the Portland Hotel Society to help put an effective governance structure in place. Faye’s influence in the community has been recognized by Vancouver Magazine, where she has made the Power 50 list three times. She was honoured with the City of Vancouver's highest award, the Civic Medal, and received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee award for her contributions to her community.

Harvey McLeod

Appointment term: December 11, 2015 – January 29, 2020 (re-appointed December 31, 2018)

Harvey McLeod is currently chief of the Upper Nicola Band and has been the executive director for the Interior Salish Employment and Training Society for over 15 years. Active in his community, he served as an Upper Nicola Band councillor for 10 terms and has served on a number of community committees and boards.

Harvey holds a certificate in leadership, governance and management excellence from the Banff Centre and a livestock production technology diploma from Fairview College.

Penny Gurstein

Appointment term: January 29, 2018 – January 29, 2021

Dr. Penny Gurstein is Professor and Director of the School of Community and Regional Planning and the Centre for Human Settlements at UBC. She specializes in the socio-cultural aspects of community planning with emphasis on those who are marginalized in planning processes. She has led research projects investigating housing access and affordability, and inequality and access issues for low-income people. Penny’s current research is investigating strategies for affordable homeownership and rental housing both internationally and in Canada. She is the founding Director of the Housing Research Collaborative, a community of housing researchers, providers and policy makers focused on understanding systemic impediments in the housing system and the development of models to address housing unaffordability.

Penny also has considerable experience working with community groups in the Metro Vancouver region. She is a registered planner and member of the Canadian Institute of Planners. Penny is also the 2016 recipient of the YWCA Women of Distinction Award for Education, Training and Development.

Perry Staniscia

Appointment term: February 19, 2018 – February 19, 2020

Perry Staniscia retired from the position of General Manager Strategic Initiatives with the City of Coquitlam in 2017 having worked there since 2006. Prior to that, Perry was in charge of administering the largest affordable rental housing portfolio in the region for Metro Vancouver and developed numerous new affordable housing projects during his tenure there. In 1987, Perry joined the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) and was able to gain in-depth experience of the real estate market, financing and affordable housing.

Perry was a founding member and Secretary of the BC Non-Profit Housing Association and has served on other non-profit Boards as well. Perry studied urban land economics at the University of British Columbia and holds various professional designations directly related to his extensive career in real estate.

Katherine McParland

Appointment term: April 20, 2018 – April 20, 2020

Katherine McParland is the founder and manager of the A Way Home Kamloops movement to end youth homelessness. This issue is close to Katherine's heart as a youth who experienced homelessness and found purpose in this truth to create change. A Way Home Kamloops' work has been innovative and ground-breaking as the first community in BC to implement a youth homelessness action plan.

In 2017, Katherine was appointed to the federal government's Advisory Committee on Homelessness. Most recently, Katherine co-founded and co-chairs the BC Coalition to End Youth Homelessness that is helping to lead the development of recommendations for a provincial plan. These experiences have supported Katherine's integration of learning as a Masters of Social Work Leadership student at University of Calgary.

Barb Carle-Thiesson

Appointment term: September 4, 2018 – September 4, 2020

Barb Carle-Thiesson is a Chartered Professional Accountant (FCPA, FCA) in Nanaimo, B.C. Barb recently retired as a Partner of MNP LLP, Chartered Professional Accountants. Prior to joining MNP, she was a partner at Tyce Carle-Thiesson Chartered Accountants and in predecessor firms. From 1981-1991, she practised as a sole practitioner in Grande Prairie, Alberta.

Barb graduated from Brandon University in 1976 with Bachelor of Science degree in Math. She received her CA designation in Alberta in 1982 and became a Fellow in BC in 2000 and in Alberta in 2001. She is also a certified corporate director. Active in her community and her profession, Barb served on a number of boards ranging from the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada, Vancouver Island University, the First People’s Cultural Foundation Investment Committee, and the Nanaimo & District Hospital Foundation. She was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal in 2012 in recognition of her significant service to her profession and her community.

Aaron Sumexheltza

Appointment term: February 11, 2019 – January 29, 2021

Aaron Sumexheltza is the elected Chief of the Lower Nicola Indian Band, one of the communities of the Nlaka’pamux Nation. Aaron completed a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Studies from California State University, Sacramento in 1999. He completed a law degree from the Faculty of Law at the University of British Columbia in 2004.

Aaron is a lawyer and has practiced law for over twelve years. Aaron has worked in the area of criminal defense law, and also assisted Residential School survivors seeking compensation for abuse suffered while they attended Indian Residential Schools. He has represented many clients in B.C. Provincial Court, Supreme Court of British Columbia, and the B.C. Court of Appeal.

Aaron is also a board of director and chairperson for Lower Nicola Indian Band Development Corporation and Spayum Holdings LP in Merritt, BC.