Meet the Team

“The bigger the dream, the more important the team.” – Robin Sharma

  • heart-Round Corners

  • We are a values-driven company united by the common desire to make a positive impact in our communities and in the world. If you work with us, you will quickly come to find that we are one of the most talented, motivated, passionate and innovative teams you’ll ever come across. We’ve been told that we keep it refreshingly real.

HAVE SOMETHING NICE TO SAY?

Customer SOLUTIONS is kind of a big deal around here—it’s what the Funding Innovation experience is all about. If you enjoyed an amazing experience with one of our team members, let us know about it. We need to know who has another high-five coming their way. Send in your kudos.

divider

  • CHRIS CARTER
    CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER

    From the implementation of 360 degree multi-channel campaigns through to specific online driven strategies involving business strategy, presentations, advertising, media, digital, social, PR, experiential, brand identity, direct and measurement + analytics, Chris Carter has created a diverse portfolio of experience. He is a senior marketing expert who brings an innovative, holistic approach to branding and marketing for companies of all sizes. Chris is the founder of Funding Innovation and will tell you that COO actually stands for ‘Calm On the Outside’, when really, he is constantly in motion, working tirelessly to nurture the business and extend its impact. He is inspired on a daily basis by the children and amazing families he is honoured and humbled to serve. He is a voracious learner and enjoys adding new skills to his repertoire on a regular basis. Above all else, Chris is known for his ‘big heart’ – he donates time, expertise and resources to many amazing causes and is always looking to see how he can make a bigger difference.

    “I’m not a businessman – I’m a business, man.”
    — JayZ

divider

  • Peter Beresford

  • PETER BERESFORD
    CHAIRMAN

    Peter Beresford is a global executive with 31 years of senior management experience. As Chairman for Funding Innovation, Peter is responsible for the business/strategic planning, finance and public relations. Smart business people who match their brilliance with a practical ‘can-do’ attitude inspire him. He enjoys playing golf, tennis & hockey, cottage life and his grandchildren. Peter is also the volunteer President and Board Member of Toronto’s famous Santa Claus Parade. He is known by many as the ‘executive assistant to Santa Claus’.

    “Face reality as it is, not as it was or as you wish it to be.”
    — Jack Welch


divider

  • RON GARDNER
    PRESIDENT

    Ron Gardner has over 40 years of senior sales and marketing experience. Ron is responsible for Funding Innovation’s business development and relationship management efforts at the Charity, Foundation and Corporate Partner level. He finds inspiration in such great leaders as John F. Kennedy and Winston Churchill who worked tirelessly to bring about necessary change and achieve the seemingly impossible. He enjoys walking a minimum of 5 miles a day, playing golf and listening to classic rock music. Ron is the former chairman of the Board for Nelson Youth Centre and has been with them since 2000.

    “Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.”
    — John F. Kennedy

divider


divider

  • Meghan Hastings

  • MEGHAN HASTINGS
    OPERATIONS MANAGER

    Meghan is a multitasking queen whose incredible organizational and administrative skills lead and motivate the Funding Innovation team and keep the business running smoothly. She finds inspiration in her family’s legacy – her grandparents moved to Canada so that their children could have a better life – and she cherishes the roots and family strengths that continue to flourish as a result. She enjoys hiking, spending time with her two dogs, and reading a good book.

    “If you can dream it, you can do it.”
    — Walt Disney


divider

  • Lesley Carter

  • LESLEY CARTER
    OFFICE ADMINISTRATION

    Lesley is the heart, the smiling face and the glue that holds it all together at Funding Innovation. She is the first person you see when you walk in the door and the last person to wish you well as you go back out into the world. She is greatly inspired by her children; making a difference out there in the world and loving what they do. She is a very proud mama. Lesley enjoys walking, being outdoors, and having a project on the go at all times.

    “Get up, dress up, show up & never give up.”
    — Genevieve Rhode


divider

divider

  • Dave Loft

  • DAVELOFT
    REGION PROGRAM DIRECTOR

    Dave Loft is Funding Innovation’s Region Program Director. He believes that the quality of life is the quality of your relationships and he makes it his top priority to develop and build deeper and more meaningful relationships with the amazing charity organizations and incredible community partners who, to him, exemplify philanthropy in the truest form. Dave manages our new “Street Team”, an initiative that allows Funding Innovation to bring an indoor/outdoor art gallery to a wide variety of special events and shows. This program provides our partners with an additional tool for raising awareness and funds. Two special people inspire Dave’s vision for making a difference. The first is his mother, Fonda Loft, whose involvement with multiple charity organizations over the last 25 years has instilled in him a passion for helping others. The other is Michael “Pinball” Clemons; one of the most gracious and generous people Dave has had the pleasure of working with. They both serve as constant reminder of the hard work, dedication and relentless pursuit that is required everyday to help make our world a better place.

    “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”
    — Seneca


divider

  • Heidi Perras

  • HEIDI PERRAS
    PROGRAM ADMINISTRATOR

    Heidi is a solution person. She troubleshoots and solves any issues that may arise from day to day and streamlines each process to ensure happier customers and therefor happier foundations. She organizes deliveries nationwide and liases with each of our warehouses and Region Program Directors daily. . She finds inspiration in those who have worked towards a social justice – those who have banded together to succeed in peaceful revolution for the betterment of society. Heidi is an avid book nerd and a history buff. She enjoys Crossfit and travels as much as possible.

    “Our ambition should be to rule ourselves, the true kingdom for each one of us; and true progress is to know more, and be more, and to do more.”
    — Oscar Wilde


divider


divider

  • Carly Marley

  • CARLY MARKEY
    CHIEF STORYTELLER

    Carly Markey is Funding Innovation’s Chief Storyteller. She thrives on empowering individuals, companies and organizations to articulate and share the stories of how they are making a difference in the world. Carly delights in exploring beautiful notions, conscious truths, unique cultures, and most importantly, human beings expressing their joys, their pains and their visions of a better world. She is fueled by possibility and dark chocolate.

    “The adjacent possible is a kind of shadow future, hovering on the edges of the present state of things, a map of all the ways in which the present can reinvent itself.”
    — Steven Johnson


divider

  • Nitin Sharma

  • NITIN SHARMA
    WAREHOUSE & LOGISTICS MANAGER

    Nitin manages the daily operations of the Funding Innovation warehouse, including the shipping/receiving, maintenance and supply chain management. What inspires him the most are compassionate, hardworking and dedicated individuals like his father. Nitin is a sports enthusiast who enjoys playing basketball, baseball and golf.

    “Only the strong survive.”


divider

  • Megan McNamara

     

  • MEGAN MCNAMARRA
    DIRECTOR, PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT

    Megan McNamara, our newest member of the team, is the Director of Program Development. Alongside Ron Gardner, Meg maintains and builds relationships with our charitable and corporate partners. She is our GO TO for our Region Program Directors for support and direction and is the key contact for new charity partners. She is inspired by her bright and beautiful little boy and loves nothing more than spend time outdoors, preferably camping, with her family, puppy dogs included!

    “It is better to attempt something great and fail than attempt nothing and succeed.”
    — Unknown


divider

  • Adam Kooistra

  • ADAM KOOISTRA
    REGIONAL MANAGER

    Adam’s role is to stay on top of bid collection on a bi-weekly schedule within the area of Northern Toronto and up to Barrie, ON. He rotates the artwork on easels on the same schedule to appeal to all demographics. He strives to expand our business to raise more charitable donations and bring more partners on board to host new easel locations. Adam is inspired by his father and attributes his work ethic to him. He is ambitious, active and a sports enthusiast.

    “Look for something positive in each day, even if some days you have to look a little harder.”
    — Unknown


divider

  • Bertan Kosev

  • BERTAN KOSEV
    JUNIOR MARKETING COORDINATOR

    Bertan works as a marketing coordinator for Funding Innovation. In this role he works from concept to production and specializes in graphic design, social media content creation & management and online development. Comedians inspire him as they make people laugh and always know the funniest ways to tell stories. Bertan enjoys playing video games and skateboarding.

    “For every dark night there’s a brighter day”
    — Tupac


divider


  • Lucia Servello

  • LUCIASERVELLO
    REGIONAL MANAGER

    Is currently hard at work crafting his bio and getting it just right. It will be worth the wait!

    “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
    — Mahatma Gandhi


divider

  • Jonathan Trebble

  • JOHN TREBBLE
    REGION DIRECTOR

    John is one of Funding Innovation’s tireless Region Directors who works to ensure that new product is available on time and your bids are collected safely and in a timely manner. He maintains the pictures and easels within Central Eastern Ontario. He is inspired by freedom itself; the concept and the experience. John enjoys snowboarding, gardening, hiking, wakeboarding and dirt biking.

    “Now I write the cheques”
    — Chris Carter (inside joke)


divider

  • Kristin Szilvassy

  • KRISTIN SZILVASSY
    CUSTOMER SOLUTIONS REPRESENTATIVE

    Kristin Szilvassy is our Social Media creative brain (or Coordinator if you want to get technical) and energetic Customer Service Representative. Kristin is one of our incredible team that you can catch on the other end of the line when you place your bid or call in for customer service. She is passionate about the outdoors and is active in extreme sports and DIY projects. One day, she’ll be living in a tiny house built by hand out in the mountains where a day snowboarding or mountain biking will be right outside her front door. Her siblings inspire her to be the best version of herself.

    ”Do what you feel in your heart to be right, for you’ll be criticized anyway.”
    –Eleanor Roosevelt


divider


divider

  • Sandra Vancea

  • SANDRA VANCEA
    COMMUNITY AMBASSADOR

    Sandra works at building Funding Innovation’s list of community partners and host locations. She expands the network and thus expands the organization’s ability to make an impact. People who focus on the positive, who overcome adversity and manage to forge ahead, inspire her. She is also inspired by beautiful sunny days. Sandra is an avid yoga enthusiast – working out twice a week – and also enjoys jazz, traveling and spending time with her little grandchildren.

    “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”
    — Albert Einstein


divider

  • Bill Watson

  • BILL WATSON
    REGION DIRECTOR

    Bill is a Region Director and is responsible for developing new easel locations, doing the setup for new easels, keeping the easels & artwork looking their best, maintaining relationships with location owners, doing special deliveries when required, helping to educate and share about the Easel Program, and most importantly to him, maximizing the funding that Funding Innovation is able to deliver to their partners. He is inspired by being able to do what he truly loves each day, and by the vision of Chris Carter and Funding Innovation. He enjoys singing, dancing and the Toronto Blue Jays.

    “LOVE yourself first, before you can LOVE others.”


divider

  • Cheryl Serpanchy

  • CHERYL SERPANCHY
    REGIONAL PROGRAM MANAGER, VICTORIA, BC


    Cheryl’s role is to manage the implementation, expansion and service delivery for Vancouver Island, BC, with particular focus on the Department of National Defense to Support Our Troops, BC Children’s Hospital, Make-A-Wish BC and regional hospital foundations.

    “You must be the change you wish to see in the world”
    — Mahatma Ghandi


divider

  • Mandy Trudeau

  • MANDY TRUDEAU
    REGION DIRECTOR, MONTREAL

    Mandy Trudeau is Funding Innovation’s energetic Region Director for the province of Quebec. Her creative imagination and positive attitude help to build relationships that ultimately lead to the betterment of her community through the platform of Funding Innovation’s programs. Mandy is an avid traveler and a yoga addict. She stays inspired by pushing herself outside of her comfort zone and by listening to music.

    “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”
    — Maya Angelou


divider

  • Sarah Wilbur

  • SARAH WILBUR
    REGION DIRECTOR, ATLANTIC CANADA

    Sarah Wilbur is Funding Innovation’s Region Director for Atlantic Canada. She works to develop the network of community partners in this area by collaborating with local businesses and organizations and raising awareness about the Easel Program. She finds inspiration in sunshine and in travelling. Sarah enjoys working with different groups of people, networking, traveling, using different languages and overall drawing on her ‘vast hinterland of interests and skills’.

    “There are some things you just cannot go through together without ending up liking one another, and knocking out a twelve-foot mountain troll is one of them.”

    — Harry Potter


divider

  • Ron Simpson

  • RON SIMPSON
    REGION DIRECTOR, CALGARY

    Ron Simpson is the Region Director for the province of Alberta. In this role he takes care of Funding Innovation’s local charitable partners, sources and maintains easel locations, and manages the Calgary warehouse. His sense of humour and his five grandchildren help him make the most of life. He is a regular attendee and active supporter of their hockey and soccer games. Ron enjoys golf and bowling in his free time. He has always been inspired by the consistency, honesty and dependability of his loving mother.

    “Make hay while the sun shines.”


divider

  • Louis Clement

  • LOUIS CLEMENT
    REGIONAL MANAGER

    Louis Clement is a member of our fantastic team in Alberta. He assists in developing new locations for Funding Innovation’s Easel Program so that we are able to reach a wider audience in our company’s efforts to raise money for our charitable partners. Louis has the gift of “joie de vivre” or a cheerful enjoyment of life. He loves to express this by cooking for family and friends and lives to see the satisfaction and enjoyment on the faces of his loved ones. Golfing, skiing and a good chat + a stroll are how he enjoys himself. He is inspired above all else by his wife and children.

    “Great smiles are contagious.“


divider

  • Linda Ferguson

  • LINDA FERGUSON
    REGION DIRECTOR, BRITISH COLUMBIA

    Linda is responsible for managing the Funding Innovation Area Managers in BC. She works hard to build and manage relationships with foundation partners and with the business community on the west coast. The people who work to make a difference in the lives of others continually inspire her. She enjoys her little nieces and among them holds the current title of, ‘Best Goldfish Face-maker”.

    “Think it; do it.”


divider

  • Phil Baker

  • PHIL BAKER
    REGION DIRECTOR, OTTAWA

    Phil Baker, along with his partner Lynne, is a pioneer of Funding Innovation’s Easel Program. They launched the initiative into the Ottawa Region and continue to develop and manage ongoing relationships with most of the hospital foundations in the National Capital Region and Ottawa Valley. Phil brings over 35 years of senior sales and marketing experience in the pharmaceutical sector to his role at Funding Innovation. Phil is a former Director for the Asthma Society of Canada and past co-chair for the “pain explained” patient advocacy campaign. When you can drag him away from doing the work he loves, you can find Phil on the golf course with Lynne.

    “Whether you think you can do a thing, or you think you can’t, you’re right.”
    — Henry Ford


divider

  • Lynne Baker

  • LYNNE BAKER
    REGIONAL MANAGER, OTTAWA

    Lynne Baker, along with her partner Phil, is a pioneer of Funding Innovation’s Easel Program. They launched the initiative into the Ottawa Region and continue to develop and manage ongoing relationships with most of the hospital foundations in the National Capital Region and Ottawa Valley. Lynne honed her impressive sales & customer SOLUTIONS skills with one of Canada’s largest diagnostics companies. She has dedicated herself on the front lines of charity work as Registrar for Camp Quality; a national charitable organization devoted to providing camping experiences and year-round programming for children with cancer. Like her partner, Phil, when she’s happily working, you can find her on the golf course.

    “Whether you think you can do a thing, or you think you can’t, you’re right.”
    — Henry Ford


divider

  • Dan Cleary

  • DAN CLEARY
    REGIONAL DIRECTOR, EDMONTON

    Dan Cleary is responsible for prospecting new easels locations and the rotation of prints in the Edmonton area. He enjoys playing basketball, gold and watching his sons play hockey. He is inspired by his wife and sons and am a dedicated, honest, tenacious and very patient individual.

    ” You miss a 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
    — Wayne Gretzky


divider


divider


divider


divider

  • Lauren Dunphy

  • LAUREN DUNPHY
    CUSTOMER SOLUTIONS REPRESENTATIVE

    Lauren Dunphy is one of our frontline representatives, maintaining communication with our bidders. Her adventurous spirit combined with her compassion is the perfect combination when it comes to providing the best SOLUTIONS possible for our customers. Lauren gets incredible satisfaction from providing successful bidders with their artwork while simultaneously raising funds for our foundation partners. She is one of our many fitness fanatics and bookworms and loves to travel and explore new places. And she can cook, too!

    “Define success on your own terms, achieve it by your own rules and build a life you’re proud to live.”
    — Anne Sweeney, President of Walt Disney Co.


divider

divider

  • Tracy Amann

     

  • TRACY AMANN
    CUSTOMER SOLUTIONS REPRESENTATIVE

    Tracy assists in the sale of artwork to benefit our charitable partners. She is incredibly excited to help make the world a better place through fundraising across Canada. Tracy enjoys working in the film industry, producing and working on set, and has a great passion for animals, painting and music. She values loyalty, hard work and kindness in all things.

    “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
    — Ferris Bueller


divider

  • Marion Saura

     

  • MARION SAURA
    CUSTOMER SOLUTIONS REPRESENTATIVE

    Marion Saura is our official bilingual customer SOLUTIONS representative. While not masquerading as an Ontarian, Marion is the primary contact for our French customers based out of Montreal. When she is not showing off her foosball skills, you will likely find her with her nose buried in a book absorbing all the knowledge to add to her mind palace. She is inspired by the stories of the people we hear from everyday who have overcome adversity and are now looking to give back.

    “We can be heroes, just for one day.”
    — David Bowie

divider

divider

  • Brian Matthews

     

  • BRIAN MATTHEWS
    DRIVER

    Brian is Funding Innovation’s driver in the Hamilton-Niagara region of Ontario. He delivers pictures to our customers’ homes and work places and lends a hand in our warehouse on occasion. He stays active on a number of teams and enjoys good company.

    “If you aren’t going all the way, why go at all?”
    — Joe Nemeth

divider

  • Shanley Redekopp

     

  • SHANLEY REDEKOPP
    REGION DIRECTOR, MANITOBA

    Shanley Redekopp is our Winnipeg Region Program Director. She is a super hero of many talents and we are fortunate enough to have her on our team, focusing on building relationships within the community to create an even greater impact on our charity partners. She enjoys kicking back with family and friends at the lake. When not doing her part to save the world, you can find her in the garden, on a hiking trail or cooking up a storm with her husband and two kids.

    “Choose happiness and laugh often.”
    — Unknown


divider

  • Haley Iudiciani

  • HALEY IUDICIANI
    CUSTOMER SOLUTIONS REPRESENTATIVE

    Haley is one of our most energetic customer solutions representatives. She helps our customers through the payment and shipping process and explains what our program is all about. She is an avid athlete and bookworm who is inspired by her family. Haley takes every new experience as a learning opportunity.

divider

divider

divider

  • Brendon VanderVeen

     

  • BRENDONVAN DER VEEN
    REGIONAL MANAGER, NORTH EAST TORONTO

    Brendon is our ever reliable regional manager in and around the Durham region. You can find him collecting bids and changing artwork over on our easels or constantly on the lookout for new areas to expand the program. He loves to watch and play sports in his free time and you can often find him on the golf course or watching the game. He is inspired to be his best by his friends and family.

    “Change your thoughts and you change your world”
    — Norman Vincent Peale

divider