The Semiahmoo House Board brings together a strong range of skills and experiences, including business, education, social work, property development, municipal politics, real estate, retail management, and health services. The Board consists of 10 elected members, with an additional 3 that can be appointed on a yearly basis.
The Board practices policy governance: they spend time consulting the community and learning about current issues in community living and inclusion so they can create a vision for the organization that is innovative and forward-thinking.
Bea Hadikin has lived in White Rock/Surrey most of her life. She is a retired Principal from the Surrey School District, most recently working at Semiahmoo Secondary. In her 32 years with the district, she also worked as a teacher and vice-principal. In all of her roles, she treasured her contact with youth, the excitement of problem-solving, and the opportunity to build positive futures. She now has the wonderful gift of time and wants to give back to her community. She feels that the work Semiahmoo House Society does fits with her beliefs and practice.
Nicole Russell feels privileged to be a part of such a wonderful organization. She has witnessed first-hand the amazing impact that Semiahmoo House Society plays in individuals’ lives and the community as a whole. Nicole’s sister, Jennifer, has been a participant in various Semiahmoo House programs for over 20 years. Nicole attributes her sister’s growing confidence, life skills and community involvement to the tireless advocacy and support of Semiahmoo House.
Nicole Russell is a partner at the firm of Graves & Russell, Barristers and Solicitors. Nicole’s growing legal practice is based in South Surrey, focusing on Wills & Estates. Nicole has also been a facilitator at Anti-Harassment and Discrimination workshops for the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia.
Nicole and her family have lived in South Surrey area for the past 25 years.
Colleen has a daughter with a developmental disability and is a strong advocate for a family voice in Community Living. She and her husband started the Family Alliance Network consisting of family members that have children or siblings with developmental disabilities. The group met regularly to discuss issues and to learn from and support each other. Colleen has taught and facilitated workshops on oral communication and presentation skills in Canada and the United States for nearly 30 years. She has worked with college and university students, faculty, professionals, community groups, and even taught public speaking at a maximum security prison. She has a Master’s degree from the University of Washington in speech communication and education. Colleen was elected to the Board at the 2013 Semiahmoo House Society annual general meeting.
R.J. (Rich) Gorman has served on the Board as a member, as well as being Past Chair for a number of years. Rich and his wife, Judy, have lived in Surrey for the better part of forty years. They have been married for over 40 years and have raised six daughters, including one who attends Semiahmoo House Society's day programs. Rich has been retired for a few years after a lengthy and rewarding career at a senior executive level in the retail industry. Rich attended both BCIT and UBC, where he studied Business Administration. Rich has a passion for helping people and sharing his experiences. He is dedicated to developing teamwork as well as helping individuals to reach their full potential and leadership capabilities.
Dave joined the board in the fall of 2014 after gaining some exposure to the good work that Semiahmoo House Society was doing from his children; one of whom had attended a program and another whom had done some volunteer work for the agency. He is the Senior Vice President, Finance of Mercer International Inc.; a Nasdaq traded global producer of softwood pulp, green electricity and chemicals. He is a Chartered Professional Accountant, holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree in finance from the Sauder School of Business (UBC) and has completed advanced management studies at London Business School. He currently serves, or has served on corporate boards in the bio-technology, energy and pension management spaces along with non-profit boards of entities providing neurological research, child development and counseling services. Dave has lived in Surrey for over 10 years with his wife Denise and two teenage children; one of whom has Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Teresita Aristizabal has been involved with UNITI since 2005 as a volunteer, employee and board member. She has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of British Columbia and is a Chartered Professional Accountant. Teresita is currently a Consultant in Deloitte's Enterprise, Technology and Performanace Management Practice and is pursuing a Masters in Public Health.
For over 25 years Ian provided leadership in organizations that make Metro Vancouver a better place to live. He held various senior positions including Chief Financial Officer at Metro Vancouver and Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer at TransLink. He was President and CEO of TransLink from to 2009 to 2015 and retired from that organization in December 2015. He currently is employed with the BC Utilities Commission.
Ian became aware of Semiahmoo House Society by witnessing the positive impact it makes on the day-to-day life of his friends. He hopes that by serving on the Board he can leverage what he learned and practiced in his public sector career to support the continuing success of the Society.
Ian and family have lived in South Surrey/White Rock since 1987 and he is a graduate of UBC and holds CPA, CA and ICD.D designations.
My interest in Semiahmoo House Society began when my daughter enrolled in programs at Semiahmoo House. I am passionate about the rights of people with developmental disabilities and have done advocacy work in the area of independent living and the need for rent supplements to provide opportunities for individuals to grow and thrive in their own homes. I serve as chair of the Community Living BC (CLBC) Surrey/Delta/White Rock Community Council. I also sit on the Peninsula Homeless to Housing Task Force.
Prior to retirement I served as Manager of Administrative Support Services with the Abbotsford Fire Rescue Service for sixteen years. When I retired, I decided to continue to work in the area of administrative support services, working on a contract basis for not-for-profit organizations.
In the 1990’s, I attended Capilano College, receiving a Certificate in Local Government Administration. During my time with the Fire Department, I also completed the Auxiliary Firefighter Training Program. More recently, I completed training in advanced policy governance and person centered thinking.
My husband and I live in White Rock and enjoy being near the ocean and the many parks and hiking trails in the area as well as being close to my daughter who is living independently with support.
Catherine has worked as the Executive Director of the White Rock/ South Surrey Hospice Society, the Mayor of the City of White Rock and as a City Councillor for the City of White Rock. She has sat on numerous committees such as the Metro Environment & Energy Committee, Metro Regional Planning Committee, and Metro Regional Culture Committee. She has attended the University College of the Fraser Valley, Capilano College and BCIT. She holds certification in business administration.
Linda Annis is the owner of Sirius Marketing Communications located in Vancouver. She currently sits on the Board of Director at Osteoporosis Canada; as well as being the Executive Director of Metro Vancouver Crime Stoppers. She has previously been involved with the BC Liberal Women’s Network, BC Crime Stoppers and the Provincial Capital Commission. Linda attended Suffolk University where she studied Marketing and Sociology. She was just elected as a councillor for the City of Surrey.
Madison is an active member of the Self-Advocates of Semiahmoo. She feels most empowered when she serves the community and promotes inclusion. Some of her work includes participating in bringing beach accessible wheel chairs to White Rock Beach, enabling all people with mobility issues to go in the water and enjoy a summer day with family and friends. Madison has lived independently for over eight years. It's been a learning curve, but for her, living independently and making her own decision are key.