The members of the Community Living Society leadership team bring a broad range of life and work experiences in identifying and serving the needs of people with disabilities.

Janice Barr, Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

Since the early 1980s, Janice Barr has been instrumental in the evolution of community living in B.C.  In January 2020, Janice became the Chief Executive Office for the Community Living Society. Janice brings over thirty 30 of experience and leadership in the Community Living field. She is a passionate advocate for person-centered and responsive supports for people with intellectual disabilities and their families.  Janice began her long career and involvement in the Community Living sector by providing direct support to people with an intellectual disability and their families.  This experience continues to form the basis of her decisions.

Janice has held two previous positions as a CEO or Executive Director of a Community Living organizations as well as many sector wide leadership positions, including Advisory Board member of the Canadian Institute for Inclusion and Citizenship at University of British Columbia, Director and past Chair of the Community Social Services Employers Association, Director for the BCCEO Network and, founding member of the BC Employment Network.

Laura Barroetavena, Chief Financial Officer (CFO)

Laura brings over 10 years experience in financial leadership, strategic development, and business support. She has worked across various industries in the profit and non-profit sectors contributing to finance, hospitality, health care and higher education organizations. Prior to joining the Community Living Society, Laura was with the British Columbia Institute of Technology where she led various projects and initiatives contributing to business process improvements as well as evidence-based decision making supporting and enabling the development and implementation of operational and capital strategic planning. Laura holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) and is a Certified Professional Accountant (CPA, CGA).

As the Chief Financial Officer for CLS, Laura’s role incudes overseeing the finance, property management, and IT departments. In collaboration with operations, Laura will be working closely across multiple levels of the organization to ensure alignment of support services to CLS’s strategic planning as well as the organization’s mission and values.

Gillian Rhodes, Chief Operating Officer (COO)

Gillian Rhodes brings over 20 years in leadership, HR, change management; strategic visioning and operational management. She has worked across four continents, in the profit and non-profit sectors, and as Director of Employee Services and Operations, overseas day to day staffing and operational leadership. Prior to joining the Community Living Society, Gillian worked extensively within the Downtown Eastside community in Vancouver. This background has given her a hands-on understanding of the challenges faced and built a determined commitment to focus on person-centered and inclusive community approach.

Samantha Dickson, Director of Projects and Policy

Samantha joined the CLS in June 2015. After leading the Human Resources team for 4 years, Samantha transitioned to her current role. Prior to joining the CLS, Samantha worked in both the non profit and for profit sectors. Currently, Samantha’s role includes a collaborative partnership with all departments in the execution of projects and initiatives across the CLS. As a Change Management Certified Practitioner with a passion for continuous improvement, she supports ongoing strategic planning for the organization. Samantha currently acts as the Chair of the Policy Committee and supports the development and review of all CLS policies and procedures.

Roxanne Wiseman,Director of Quality Assurance

Roxanne Wiseman has been working supporting families with a variety of individualized needs for over 20 years. She has worked across Canada and as far away as South America with organizations such as the Canadian Cancer Society, Trillium Childhood Cancer Foundation, YMCA, CUSO, and locally within the community living sector. Roxanne values all her work experiences, especially those that pertain to her role with the CLS. She has worked as frontline community support staff both residentially, in vocational day centers and communities, and as a manager of residential homes and vocational centers. These experiences have given Roxanne a great appreciation of the work involved in supporting people to live meaningful lives and have valuable experiences as full citizens in their community. Roxanne is a strong advocate for Person Centered Active Support (PCAS) and is a CLS PCAS trainer. In her role as Director of Quality Assurance, Roxanne is responsible for the continued successful accreditation of the CLS, and oversees and ensures excellent services are provided to all of the supported individuals.

Judy Wilson, Manager of Human Resources

Judy joined the CLS in August 2019 to lead the HR team.  Prior to joining the CLS, Judy worked in several HR Manager roles in various organizations.  She also volunteered on the board of directors for the Creston District Society for Community Living.  Both her work and volunteer experience reinforced the relevance of leading a team of HR professionals who provide high quality service.  With a strong commitment to the CLS values, the HR team strives to support a welcoming, engaging and collaborative environment for each team member and supported individual. Currently, Judy’s role includes a collaborative partnership with operations in the oversight of all aspects of human resources including: employee relations, policy and procedure development, recruitment and retention, engagement initiatives, learning and development. Judy also acts as the Employer Co-Chair for the CLS Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committee and plays an active role in the oversight of health and safety at the CLS.

Aaron McQueen, Controller

Aaron joined the CLS in 2014 but has been working in Finance and Accounting since 2004.   He holds a Bachelor of Technology in Accounting and earned his Chartered Professional Accounting designation in 2009.  His work experience includes various accounting roles in a broad range of industries such as IT, Food Services, and other not-for-profit service providers.  Aaron is responsible for preparing the financial statements, cash management and reviewing the day-to-day financial transactions as well as managing the Finance team.

Elke Tilgner, Director of Programs

Elke’s background is also in service provision and coordination. She brings many years of expertise, particularly in the area of vocational services. Elke is responsible for the ongoing review and development of our current vocational programmes. Over the past number of years, demand has increased for meaningful employment as an expression of full citizenship for people with disabilities. Elke has worked to promote community inclusion strategies that support innovative practices, such as small business ownership and community partnerships.

Brenda Henderson, Director of Programs

Brenda began her career with CLS in 2007, and worked for several years as a support worker in both vocational and residential settings. While working in the field, she gained extensive experience in the Occupational Health and Safety program, and had an ongoing involvement in the After Hours Emergency Support team. Brenda has held a series of progressively more challenging leadership positions, and was appointed Director in early 2015. Her chosen focus on training and development of leadership staff allows her the opportunity to contribute to the continuing evolution of CLS’s philosophy, and to ensure that all levels of the organization are aligned to the mission and values of CLS.

Marcela Herrera, Director of Programs

Marcela Herrera has been working with the CLS since April, 1996. She began her career in North Vancouver’s vocational services, then then worked in residential services where she was the Coordinator at two locations. Marcela has been part of several committees in her time with CLS, including the Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committee, where she served as Co-Chair for 4 years. In 2016 she became certified as a Mandt instructor and now teaches CLS employees in this technicque. Marcela was appointed Director of Programs in December, 2017. Her passion for community inclusion and person-centred support is always in the forefront of her work.

Max Sumner, Director of Programs

Max started with the Community Living Society in July, 2000 at the Surrey Access Centre. From 2000 to 2015 he worked in both homes and vocational services as a Community Living Counsellor, Assistant Coordinator, Coordinator, and the Vocational Revitalization Lead. As well he served on a few committees: Liaison, Joint Occupational Health and Safety, Resolving our Differences, and the Employee Representative Committee.  Having now completed the vocational revitalization project, Max has moved into Director of Programs role overseeing all day supports. Max has also helped develop and teach goals and goal setting to Coordinators and staff, he teaches Person Centred Active Support (or Active Support) development and training, and is a facilitator for Way of Thinking – days 1 and 4.

Heather Jones, Director of Programs

Heather has a varied employment background that has spanned across the provinces of Manitoba, Alberta, and British Columbia. This includes 11 years in a management level position mainly focused on providing support to those with diverse abilities and cultural backgrounds. Her areas of experience include Alzheimer and dementia care, HR management, training of staff members in best practices, NVCI, leadership development and abuse protocol and ensuring standards of care are continually met.

Heather is passionate about her career in Human Services and utilizes a person-centered approach. She is committed to supporting and encouraging individuals and their families to reach their full potential within their communities.

On a personal level Heather enjoys hiking, sailing, travelling, and exploring and giving back to communities both near and far. Through her travels around the world, she has participated in a fundraising trip with Outward Bound Canada to Everest Base camp and  mission trips to in Mexico where she worked to help build an orphanage

Alan James, Property and Fleet Manager

As a former social worker, Alan James has over 15 years of experience working in youth group homes, senior citizen homes, crisis intervention, mental health, child protection, and community living.  In his current role, Alan is kept occupied supporting the accessibility and maintenance needs of all the CLS locations and vehicles including compliance with health and safety standards and legislated requirements. He also plays a lead role in ensuring the emergency preparedness of the organization. As a passionate supporter of life-long learning, Alan has completed Degrees in Psychology, Sociology, and Social Work. He also has a Diploma and a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Sciences. He is kept energized and committed to CLS by his passion for being part of an organization dedicated to promoting positive social change so that all individuals have the opportunity to live their lives to their fullest potential.

Vicky Pascoe, Manager of Administration

Over the years, Vicky has gained depth and knowledge of company operations and administration. Vicky is responsible for all administrative processes at the Administration Centre including implementation, customization, training and management of various company-wide administration systems and communication/technology platforms, website management, liaising with the Board of Directors and all departments and vendors to ensure effective communications and relationships are maintained. Vicky is responsible for the supervision of the Administration Team.