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DAREarts Board of Directors


  • Chair, Tarik Muzaffar —Managing Director & Global Head - Financial Institutions, TD Securities

    Tarik MuzaffarTarik has worked at TD Bank for 25+ years. He is currently head of sales and relationship management for the Global Transaction Banking business with Financial Institution clients located around the world.  He worked and lived in the UK for four years.  Tarik is passionate about helping kids and our community.  He believes in the power of the arts to engage and inspire kids. Tarik is excited to help expand the DAREarts program to reach many more kids in need.

  • Vice-Chair, Mark LeBlanc — Executive Vice President, Ontario & Atlantic Canada, Northbridge Insurance

    Mark LeBlancMark has more than 20 years of experience as a business leader in the insurance industry. In his current role of Executive Vice President, he is responsible for leading Northbridge Insurance’s Ontario and Atlantic regions. A long-time hockey coach and youth mentor, Mark enjoys working with youth and helping them succeed. Building on Northbridge Insurance’s long-standing commitment to DAREarts, Mark has joined the Board of Directors to support the organization’s goal of truly making a difference in the lives of children.  

  • Vice-Chair, J.C. Pennie — President & CEO, Windrush Corporation; Chairman, Windrush Immigration Canada Inc.; Chairman, Zast-Foods Corporation

    J.C. PennieThe founding Chairman of DAREarts, his career started as the youngest marketing manager in the history of GE Canada.  As an entrepreneur, he founded companies in: printing and advertising, pioneered computer graphics in Hollywood, developed fast-food restaurants, built oil industry infrastructure, created commercial wind energy projects and is currently establishing Windrush Estate Winery in Hockley Valley.  For his design of Chateau Windrush, he received the first architectural achievement award by the Niagara Escarpment Commission.

  • Treasurer, Yanzhi Chen — Former Bank Executive

    Yanzhi ChenYanzhi worked for Scotiabank from 1998 to 2017, in various areas including Global Banking and Markets, Global Risk Management and Global Transaction Banking.  Her last role was Vice President and Head of Financial Institutions Americas and Caribbean.  Yanzhi has worked in China, Mexico, England and Canada and is fluent culturally and linguistically in Chinese, Spanish and English.  Yanzhi supports DAREarts because she sees the life-changing impact of DAREarts on Canadian youth and the dedication of the DAREarts team. 



  • Annie Appleby — System Superintendent for School Effectiveness, Toronto District School Board

    Annie ApplebyAnnie is currently the System Superintendent for School Effectiveness for the TDSB. She assumed this role in August 2012 after serving students, families, community and staff in the North West of the city as a Family of Schools Superintendent. During her time in Rexdale, she supported schools and partnered with DAREarts in a number of initiatives. Subsequently, Annie has maintained her interest and participates in events that highlight children and youth learning and leadership via DAREarts.

  • Kristal Au-Yong — Vice President - Risk Technology & Strategy, Scotiabank

    Kristal Au-YongKristal has 15 years of experience in the financial industry, spanning across financial regulations, global transaction banking and retail risk management. In her most recent roles, she has held global mandates that span across Canada and Latin America. Kristal completed her BA in Economics from the University of Waterloo. Kristal is excited about giving children an opportunity to build leadership skills that can shape their lives positively.

  • Peter Aumonier — Senior Vice President, Northbridge National Litigation and Technical Management

    Peter AumonierSince joining Northbridge in 1986, Peter has held a number of positions, including Claims Adjuster for Western Canada and Director of U.S. Claims exposures. When he’s not helping drive Northbridge Claims forward, Peter unwinds by following his passion for running, golf and music. Not many people know this, but Peter is an accomplished Pipe Band champion: he’s won the Canadian championship 12 times, the North American Pipe Band Champion four times, and even the World Championship!

  • Mark Baker —Vice President, Projects, Noront Resources

    Mark BakerMark is an Engineer with 30 years of leading businesses and managing projects in Canada and internationally, experiencing diverse cultures and societies.  Currently, he manages projects in the “Ring of Fire” in Ontario, as Noront Resources works to responsibly develop the first mines in this northern undeveloped wetland.  For 8 years, Noront and DAREarts have worked to empower Aboriginal youth.  Following the death of Paul Semple, Mark and Noront continue Paul’s vision of more mining companies supporting DAREarts.  He has founded the “Paul Semple Scholarship Fund for Innovative Mines”.

  • Chief Morley Googoo — Regional Chief for Newfoundland and Nova Scotia; AFN: Language, Culture, Arts & Youth

    Chief Morley GoogoChief Morley Googoo served as the Chief of Waycobah FN for 19 years and was instrumental in Waycobah FN assuming jurisdiction over its education system. He has personally spearheaded several youth initiatives which, like DAREarts, were aimed at encouraging positive attitudes in youth. Since 2011, he has served as the Regional Chief for Newfoundland and Nova Scotia where he has held the educational portfolio for the Assembly of First Nations".

  • Ron Huddleston — Managing Partner, HCM

    Chief Morley GoogooA father of 3 and the husband of a Wells Fargo Bank Executive, Ron Huddleston coaches Lacrosse for his sons’ Toronto Beaches Lacrosse teams.  He has worked as a professional actor and, for the last 22 years, in financial services specializing in derivatives and foreign exchange.  He has worked as a trader and structured product specialist for Dresdner Bank, Citibank, and Wells Fargo. Currently, he is the Managing Partner of HCM, a currency based investment group.

  • John Landry — Managing Director and Head of Treasury and Trade Solutions, Citibank Canada

    John LandryPrior to John’s 17 years with Citi in the US, Australia and Canada, he founded a technology firm and worked for Wachovia and GE Capital. He holds a degree in Finance and Marketing from Richmond University. His three children remind him daily of the amazing potential of a child who has been given attention, love and support. John is inspired by DAREarts’ mission to deliver the same to children across Canada.

  • Andre Morriseau — Director of Awards and Stakeholder Relations, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB)

    Andre MorriseauAndre (Ojibway) is an enthusiastic ambassador for Aboriginal arts, culture and public affairs. He has served as Secretariat for the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation (NAAF) now Indspire; as Communications Officer for the Chiefs of Ontario (COO); and on the James Bartleman Aboriginal Youth Creative Writing Awards jury. He feels strongly that, through the creative force of DAREarts, all Canadians have the opportunity to grow the imagination and potential of less advantaged children.

  • Deborah Robinson — Executive Director, Canadian Litigation Counsel

    Deborah  RobinsonDeborah has been with the Canadian Litigation Counsel since 2004 and is responsible for business development, strategic planning, budgeting, and oversight of the advertising programs. From 1992 — 2004 she worked as the Vice President Marketing and Business Development at CGI Insurance Business Services. As a trained artist, Deborah also paints and her artwork is included in private collections. Her own experience with the arts inspires her support for DAREarts.

  • Monika Jensen Stevenson — Author; Producer; CEO of MyFamilyMemoirs.com

    Monika Jensen StevensonMonika is a former Emmy award winning producer of CBS 60 Minutes; a best-selling author, recipient of the US National Press Club award; and CEO of MyFamilyMemoirs.com. She has served on Branksome Hall's executive and fund raising committees. In South East Asia, she was media consultant for the Population Development Association. She has lectured widely on the subject of prisoners of war and is the only non-veteran to receive the Vietnam Veterans National medal. Monika assists with the DAREarts Literature program, helping the children learn to speak well upon self-reflection.

  • Lesa Williams George — Centrally Assigned Principal, Toronto District School Board (TDSB)

    Lesa Williams GeorgeLesa is an educator with wisdom and heart; one who is always on the side of the child. She is currently a centrally assigned TDSB Principal, responsible for student success and school improvement, promoting anti-oppression via practices that honour Equity and Well-Being. A TDSB leader, she has advocated for DAREarts since 2009 as DAREarts sets the well-being and development of children at the centre of all their efforts.


Directors Emeritus

  • Paul Semple — Chief Operating Officer, Noront Resources Ltd. — DAREarts is saddened by the loss of our Chair, Paul Semple

  • Sandra Bussin — Artist, Realtor, Former Council Speaker, City of Toronto

    Sandra BussinSandra Bussin, one of the longest serving Board members, believes in the arts as a positive way to engage, encourage and support the personal development of our young people.  She holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts, Fine Arts from York University and a Bachelor of Education, Business, Marketing and Visual Arts from the University of Toronto. Her artwork is found in private collections including York University and the Robert McLaughlin Gallery. Sandra has served as Toronto's Deputy Mayor, the first Speaker of Toronto City Council, City Councillor for Beaches East York and Toronto Public School Trustee. Sandra is now with Forest Hill Real Estate - Yorkville Office, Toronto, working with Commercial Development and Residential clientele.

  • Barry Cracower — Former CEO, Baycrest Global Solutions

    Barry CracowerBarry is a senior executive with solid marketing and management credentials. As Founder & President of Rexall Pharmacy and Vice President of The Katz Group, he was instrumental in developing the organization into Canada's second largest drug store chain. He is a seasoned board executive currently serving on the Boards of Dominion Citrus Limited, The Heart & Stroke Foundation, Baycrest Health Centre and The Partnership for Stroke Recovery Research, where he is Chair. He also serves on two private company Boards

  • Susan Doniz — Senior Vice President, Global Chief Information Officer, Aimia

    Susan DonizAs part of Aimia's executive team, Susan is responsible for defining the global internal and external Information & Technology strategy to deliver innovation and growth. She previously held numerous Global Leadership roles with Procter & Gamble. She has lived in most countries in Latin America and speaks various languages. She is often tapped to lead, create and deliver multifunctional strategies for top executives, and has sponsored various cultural networks. She serves on other boards including the CIO Association of Canada, CORE, Wilfred Laurier Industry Advisory Committee, Engineers without Borders and the Salvation Army National Board.  She Is enthusiastic about helping DAREarts nationalize its programs.

  • Stanley Elkind — Legal Counsel, McLean & Kerr LLP

    Stanley ElkindStanley established the firm of Elkind, Lipton & Jacobs LLP, and is now legal counsel for McLean & Kerr LLP. He was the founder and director of Globalaw Ltd. and founder and member of the International Committee of Mackrell International, an international network of law firms. He is a director on several charities, cultural and civic, past and present, public and private corporations including North York Symphony, Bridgepoint Health Foundation, Canadian Opera Company, Opera Hamilton, Opera Ontario, Baycrest Centre, Canadian Council of Christians and Jews.

  • Robert A. Fung — Chair and CEO of Crystallex International Corporation, Chair of the Globe Foundation of Canada and Deputy Chair of Sunwah International Kingsway Canada Corp.

    Robert A. FungBob is the former founding chair of the Toronto Waterfront Revitalization Corporation, now Waterfront Toronto, established by the Government of Canada, the Province of Ontario and the City of Toronto to lead the $17 billion renewal of Toronto's waterfront.  Bob serves as a member of the Board of Directors of a number of other private, public and charitable organizations.  He was a member of the Prime Minister of Canada's Advisory Committee on Asia Pacific Economic Corporation, as well as a member of the Government of Canada's Department of Industry International Trade and Agriculture Team Canada Inc. Advisory Board.

  • Helen Giffen — President, HG Communication

    Helen GiffenWith over 30 years’ experience working in leading organizations to help drive change, grow talent and build high performance cultures, Helen is known to bring both purpose and a passion for big ideas. 

    Under her leadership, Aviva Canada established itself as one of Canada’s top ten most Admired Corporate cultures, with distinctive programs that support talent development and employee engagement in performance and change. Alongside Aviva , Helen has held a variety of executive HR positions in insurance (Manulife Financial), in financial services (Bank of Montreal, MCAP), and in the public sector (Heart and Stroke Foundation) and has extensive leadership experience with strategic planning, board governance, leadership, talent development, compensation plans and change management.

    Today Helen is President of HG Communication, a consulting boutique with specialties in people strategy, employer branding and communication.  A keen advocate of creating great organizations with stand out employee cultures, Helen is a strategic advisor to CEOs and Human Resources executives focused on strengthening culture, talent development and change resilience in complex, multi-stakeholder environments.

    She is a writer, public speaker, facilitator, coach, commentator (BizTV-Canada) and active board member with The Scarborough Hospital (Chair HR Committee, Chair Directors Nominating Committee) and the Museum of Contemporary Art_Toronto_Canada.

    With a an Honours degree in Economics and Political Science from University of Toronto (Victoria College), she hosted the city issues talk show, Politically Speaking (Rogers TV) for five years, and has previously been active with OCAD University, George Brown College, Province of Ontario – Passport to Prosperity program and the Strategic Capability Network. 

  • Jean-Marie Heimrath — Media Insight & Content Strategies Professional

    Jean-Marie HeimrathJean-Marie Heimrath is best known in Canadian boardrooms for his leadership as President of Standard Broadcasting’s Sound Source Networks. Jean-Marie’s strategic vision is the outgrowth of an extensive background in senior management and creative marketing across communication disciplines, including major music brands, and network and online radio.

    His creative direction has helped build major Canadian brands including Island Records, Infinity Records, Polygram and Capitol-EMI. Jean-Marie works with a wide array of enterprises with a particular emphasis on those in the not-for-profit sector.

    Jean-Marie provides expert guidance across an array of media, syndication, broadcast and licensing challenges. An established thought-leader in the industry, Jean-Marie provides insight and passion to companies searching for a way forward in a constantly evolving marketplace.

  • Frank Hennessey — President & CEO, Imvescor Restaurant Group Inc.

    Frank HennesseyFrank has been involved in the food industry for over 20 years, working for the largest restaurant companies in both the US and Canada. Currently he is the President and CEO of Imvescor Restaurant Group Inc. in Montreal. "Before I was introduced to Marilyn, I had no idea of the need for an organization such as DAREarts. When you hear the stories and meet the kids you feel compelled to want to do more. The efficacy of the DAREarts program, in helping build self esteem and responsibility, is obvious when you meet some of the graduates and see how they are now living their lives".

  • May Hughes — Community Health Nurse, DAREarts Parent

    May HughesMay Hughes has spent her career providing nursing care and services from South Carolina to Ontario’s northern remote aboriginal communities. She spends two months in Ghana annually sharing her expertise. Beyond Nursing, May holds a Master’s of Adult Education and Counseling Psychology. May’s two children are DAREarts grads. Her son is DAREarts first doctor!  In 2003, she travelled with DAREarts to the Nobel Peace Prize. Beyond DAREarts, she also volunteers at Endless Possibilities and Hope Development; African & Caribbean Diabetes Prevention; and the Nsoroma Children’s Choir.

  • Jennifer Hibberd — Pediatric Dentist, Activist for Children's Causes

    Jennifer HibberdJennifer owns and operates a very successful pediatric dental clinic in Toronto. She cares for young and challenged children in the hospital and dental clinics. Her specialty takes her into the community hospitals of William Osler Health Centre and Trillium Health Centre where she is able to provide surgical services for children in need. She is a community activist when it involves children's services and advancing the profile of children's critical needs. Her community and philanthropic projects have enabled her to launch 'Orphan's Hope, Kids to Canada', a charity for orphaned babies and young children. 

  • Roxanne Hoffman — Director, Credit Risk Policy, BMO Financial Group

    Roxanne HoffmanRoxanne has had 20 years of experience in the Financial Services Industry with the last 10 years focused on Commercial Banking. She became a DAREarts Board Director because, being aboriginal, she saw what a difference DAREarts  could make in the lives of all children at risk of not reaching their potential.

    BMO has supported DAREarts for multiple years through corporate donations and volunteer involvement.

  • Ross Munro — Retired President, Chartwells Education Dining Services

    Ross MunroRoss is the former President of Chartwells, a sector of Compass Group Canada, that serves the Canadian education market from kindergarten to university. His cross-country team served breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks to more than one million students a day. Ross is a member of the Compass Group PLC Worldwide Education Forum, a group charged with developing global best practices in educational hospitality. As Chair of the DAREarts Fundraising Committee, Ross is passionate about supporting at-risk youth.

  • Richard Patina - Retired President and CEO of Lombard Insurance Companies - DAREarts is saddened by the loss of Richard Patina

  • Ryan Pennie — President & CEO, Zast Foods

    Ryan PennieRyan is the co-founder and principal shareholder in Zast Foods, a company that provides on-the-go foods to entertainment venues, convenience stores, foodservice venues and retail outlets. Outside of work, Ryan volunteers on many boards, including the Policy Advisory Board for the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, University of Guelph; Board of Directors – Canadian Hospitality Foundation; and Selected Executive in Residence, University of Guelph, School of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

  • Jeff Phillips — Senior Managing Partner, Pure Metal Galvanizing

    Jeff PhillipsJeff's family has owned and operated Pure Metal Galvinizing since 1936. The company is a North American leader in their industry. Along with his two brothers, they operate three galvinizing facilities in Sourthern Ontario, making them Canada's largest custon Hot-Dip Galvinizer. For the past 20 years, Jeff has also an active member of an independent committee that raises money to support "The Kids Help Phone Line."

  • Donna Quan — Deputy Director - Academic, Toronto District School Board

    Donna QuanDonna Quan is Deputy Director in the Toronto District School Board. She provides leadership for the Academic "learning for all" agenda for 250,000 students from Kindergarten to Grade 12 and 150,000 Continuing Education adult learners. Donna provides and enables leadership for Teaching and Learning, Equitable & Inclusive Schools, School Improvement Planning, Student Support Services, Special Education and Section Programs, Information Communication Technologies and Continuing Education. She is a strong advocate of the Arts, as a strategy to close the opportunity and achievement gaps. Her personal mission is to champion enhanced belief and trust in Public Education.

  • Fabian Richenberger— Head of Financial Services, CarProof Corporation

    Fabian RichenbergerFabian Richenberger assumed the role of Head of Financial Services for CarProof Corporation in 2015. He began his career in commercial banking in Switzerland.  In Canada since 1997, he has held executive roles at Lombard, Northbridge Insurance and Fairfax Financial.  His broad experience in Canada has given him a deep understanding of the Canadian insurance marketplace and he is well known and respected in the industry.  His financial expertise and longstanding commitment to the arts has helped DAREarts provide opportunities to thousands of at-risk kids.

  • Jane Gardner-Robinson — Retired Chief Agent of Tokio Marine and Nichido Fire Insurance Company

    Jennifer HibberdRecently retired from Northbridge Financial Corporation, Jane has over 30 years of experience in the property and casualty industry. Since 1986, she held progressive positions with Northbridge and was appointed Chief Financial Officer of its largest subsidiary, Lombard Canada in 1997. In 2008 she was appointed Executive Vice President, responsible for the operational and project management for Lombard. When the Northbridge subsidiary operations were merged in early 2012, Jane took on the position of Executive Vice President, Enterprise Management Office. In that role, Jane was responsible for developing, organizing and managing the company's integration project portfolio and supporting its operational management. Jane continues to work with Northbridge in her role as Chief Agent of Tokio Marine and Nichido Fire Insurance Company. Jane will retire from this position on September 30, 2013.

    During her career, Jane served on several industry committees, especially with the Insurance Bureau of Canada where her main interest was in promoting risk-based regulation for property and casualty insurers. Jane is a Chartered Accountant and a graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University.  She is married with three children and one grandchild.

    Jane was first introduced to DAREarts by Rick Patina, former president of Lombard, as well as former Chairman of the Board for DAREarts. Having met DAREarts children over the years, Jane has always been moved by their stories and impressed by the positive turn their lives have taken thanks to the DAREarts program. She is excited to join DAREarts and assist in developing the new Leadership Day program to advance our involvement with the business community.

  • Julian Sale — Retired Vice President, AGFA

    Julian SaleAfter graduating from the University of Waterloo in engineering, Julian went on a 2500 mile bicycle tour of Europe. He has worked as Business Manager, Medical Products at DuPont Canada and as Vice President Medical Imaging at Agfa Inc. Now retired, Julian enjoys travel and outdoor photography, together with his wife, Maggie, both accomplished photographers. He has a very strong belief in the importance of education and the arts in children's lives. Julian assists with the DAREarts Gr. 8 Architecture Days, by helping students see the beauty of urban architecture through the camera lens. He also helps elderly citizens with various aspects of dealing with our increasingly complex and technological world and is on the board of Third Age Learning - Guelph.


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