Board of Directors

GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors consists of nine citizens who are appointed by Edmonton City Council. Our Governance Board establishes the vision, values and mandate of our Foundation. Meetings are held monthly. 

Jacquie Eales

Chair

Jacquie Eales is passionate about older adults and strongly committed to enhancing their quality of life. As a young adult, Ms. Eales volunteered at a nursing home, helping residents partake in meaningful activities. At university, Ms. Eales obtained a masters degree in aging and communication disorders, and subsequently worked as a speech-language pathologist to help older adults affected by stroke or other neurological diseases regain their communication skills. 

For the past 25 years as a research manager with Research on Aging, Policies and Programs (RAPP) in the Department of Human Ecology at the University of Alberta, Ms. Eales has created knowledge with older adults about issues that help us understand their quality of life. She is a strong advocate for older adults and their families and is able to work collaboratively and communicate effectively with relevant policy, practice, and advocacy partners. 

Ms. Eales has been part of a team that has influenced changes to federal legislation to allow for better support to family caregivers of veterans; and to provincial legislation providing job protection to caregivers. Most recently, Ms. Eales completed a project with the Greater Edmonton Foundation, working directly with senior management, staff and GEF clients to create and implement a tool to understand what contributes to GEF clients’ quality of life. This unique experience, and Ms. Eales’ commitment to enhancing older adults’ quality of life, positions her well for serving on the Greater Edmonton Foundation Board in a meaningful way.

Jacquie was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors on May 1, 2016. 


Francine Gregory

Vice Chair

Francine has lived and worked in Edmonton for over 25 years and enjoys contributing to Edmonton’s vibrant community.  Francine is a dynamic leader with over 25 years of professional experience in healthcare and human services, leading and implementing initiatives in complex organizations. 

 

Francine’s strengths are building collaborative environments, stakeholder engagement and keeping the big picture in mind.

 

Francine maintains a professional designation as a registered health professional (Recreation Therapist) and has practiced in a variety of health care settings serving patient populations in geriatrics, dementia care, developmental disabilities and mental health.

 

She believes in working towards a society that empowers individuals and families to be safe, secure and resilient.  Francine received the Premier’s Public Service Award in 2018 for her work in the area of public policy innovation for Albertans with Labour Legislation.  This award is the pinnacle of recognition in the Alberta Public Service.

 

Francine has volunteered in a number of capacities whether it is as a board director, walking on neighborhood patrol, selling hotdogs at a fundraiser, or helping an elderly neighbour.  Francine is passionate about supporting seniors’ quality of life, health and wellness, and the Arts.  Francine enjoys the outdoors, travelling, and spending time with friends and her family, which includes one kid and two mini-schnauzers!

 

Francine enjoys helping make Edmonton a great place to live!

 

Francine was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors on May 1, 2017.   


Nomagugu Baleni

Board Member

Nomagugu (Noma) is currently a manager in the Lois Hole for Women hospital. She is registered nurse who is aware of how medical conditions may possess a barrier to accessing housing and has a strong focus on quality and safety serving on various committees. 

She recently received nomination for the Alberta Health Services’ President’s Excellence Award for her work on infection prevention. She is dedicated to community development and has participated in multiple fundraising activities. 

Nomagugu grew up in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. With an enthusiastic attitude, coupled with resilience, she hopes to make a positive, sustainable contribution to seniors housing in Edmonton.

Nomagugu was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors on May 1, 2015.   


Marny Conlon

Board Member

Marny Conlon is the owner of Plenum Management Consulting.  Now, semi-retired, Marny is assisting small start-up companies identify their greatest potential for success.   Prior to this venture, Marny spent the majority of her career in health and quasi health organizations, building high performance teams and championing innovation.  Most recently, Marny was the Executive Director of one of the first Primary Care Networks to become operational.  Several zonal and provincial initiatives were shaped by her leadership, innovation and the creation of high performance teams.

Marny’s leadership success can be attributed to her strong sense of vision and her determination to serve those in need.  She builds strong relationships and her skills as a collaborator ensure shared goals and positive outcomes.  Marny has a B.A. from Trent University and certification from Grant MacEwan University in Alternative Dispute Resolution.  

Marny was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors on May 1, 2019.   

Debbie Couch

Board Member

Debbie Couch is foremost a people person.  Debbie has applied her professional accounting designation across numerous industries to arrive in an HR Pension and Benefits role where she created an innovative pension plan that garnered corporate accolades, and national interest.  To balance Debbie’s fast paced professional life, she has volunteered her expertise for nearly 20 years with corporate, not-profit and humanitarian boards.  Her service ranges through the President roles, as chair of audit and finance, governance, and executive committees, at provincial and national levels.  Also, having served in a Capital campaign for a significant renovation project. 

Debbie was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors on May 1, 2019. 
 


Craig Henderson

Board Member

Craig Henderson is a recently retired architect with over forty years of senior expertise with government and private sector clients in building design, strategic planning and project management.

Over his career, he has received Architecture Design Awards for many of his projects including Montgomery Legion Place, Kinsman Athletic Centre, Commerce Place, Edmonton Centre and the Commonwealth Recreation Centre/Edmonton Eskimo Fieldhouse. Craig was the 2014 recipient of the City of Edmonton Mayor’s Award in Universal Design for Architecture (Saville Community Sports Centre).

He has specific experience and an ongoing interest in seniors housing. His projects include the following: Canterbury Court, Montgomery Legion Place, and The Churchill Retirement Residence. Healthcare design is another area of expertise for Craig and his firm’s successful projects include the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital, the Grey Nuns Hospital, as well as the Links Clinic and the Community Health Centres at the Misericordia and Sturgeon Hospitals.

Craig has served on many boards in a volunteer capacity including Vice President, Art Gallery of Alberta; Board Member, Edmonton Executives Association; Board Chair, Edmonton Downtown Business Association; Member, Accessibility Committee, University of Alberta; Special Consultant, Boys & Girls Club-Camp Warwa Development. Craig is recognized for his judgement and strategic insight regarding the built environment. He is inspired by complex issues and drawn to challenges by the opportunity to make a difference in society and the community.

Craig was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors on May 1, 2018.   


Paul Nothof

Board Member

Paul Nothof is a long time resident of the Edmonton area.  He is a graduate of the University of Alberta, where he obtained both a Bachelor of Commerce degree and a Juris Doctor.  Mr. Nothof is a partner at the Edmonton based law firm of Ogilvie LLP, assisting clients in Alberta, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.  His legal practice is focused on business law and real estate development.  Mr. Nothof also currently serves as the Managing Partner at Ogilvie LLP.

Paul was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors on May 1, 2019. 

Shawn Parchoma

Board Member

Shawn Parchoma is an accomplished public policy and external relations leader with 10+ years of experience across the public and private sectors.  He is adept at developing and maintaining relationships with key stakeholders, including governments, regulators, industry, NGOs, and communities.  He currently serves as Manager, Government Relations & Public Policy for a global medical and CPG company, where he is responsible for maintaining positive relationships with all levels of government and developing policy in a highly regulated industry.  Additionally, his work involves international government relations and market access related to exports and in-country operations.

Shawn has held numerous policy and engagement roles within the Alberta, Saskatchewan, and federal governments, including the Department of Justice,AGLC, Department of Energy, Executive Council, International Relations, Service Canada and Correctional Service Canada.  He received the Premier’s Public Service Award for public policy innovation.

Shawn enjoys giving back to his community through applying his policy, advocacy, and governance skills to the benefit of community organizations and issues he is passionate about.  Shawn serves as Secretary on the Board of Directors of Edmonton’s Food Bank and has served on both the Governance and Advocacy committees.  He has previously volunteered with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, United Way and Pride Festival Society. Shawn was honoured to receive a Ministerial appointment to serve as a Public Board Member for the Association of the Chemical Profession of Alberta (ACPA) and was a volunteer instructor for Alberta Culture providing board governance sessions for Alberta non-profit organizations.

Shawn was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors in May 2020.


Tracy Sopkow

Board Member

For over 20 years Tracy has worked to foster a connection with Albertans in an effort to understand their values, perspectives and needs as it relates to their health and well-being.  As a leader in healthcare philanthropy at Covenant Foundation, and previously at the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, she has demonstrated the ability to take a vision and make it a reality through sound strategy, development, communication, fundraising and community and stakeholder engagement.

Tracy is a graduate of the University of Alberta and MacEwan University.  She is married with three teenage sons. In her free time she enjoys travelling, going to the movies and sporting events, and spending time with family and friends.

Tracy was appointed to the GEF Seniors Housing Board of Directors in May 2020.