Malcolm Shookner (ASI President) has an extensive background in community development, social research, health promotion and public policy in the non-profit, academic and public sectors. He has worked on many projects that use indicators to measure the quality of life, sustainability, health and well-being of communities. Malcolm was formerly the Chief Statistician for Nova Scotia Community Counts (retired), a provincially supported website that provided information for and about communities.
Patsy Beattie-Huggan (ASI Coordinator) is the founder and President of The Quaich Inc., a PEI based health promotion and consulting company. Patsy has a broad background in nursing education and health system redesign, and is firmly committed to building capacity within communities. Her creative work in health promotion, including leadership to the development of the Circle of Health, has been widely recognized.
Karen Clarke is a social worker focused on public policy related to child, youth, family, and community wellbeing. She has worked for several years with the Department of Children, Seniors and Social Development with the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador (GNL), starting in frontline child protection and moving into project management and policy development. She’s also worked with the Public Engagement and Planning Division with GNL as Manager of Youth Programs, working with various community and youth organizations. Karen is known for making connections and facilitating collaboration. She continually seeks opportunities to develop professionally and enhance her ability to positively contribute to a healthier society.
Susan Hartley PhD has spent a lifetime working as a clinical psychologist, an educator and human rights advocate. She has served in leadership roles in her profession, including as President of the Association of Psychologists of Nova Scotia, and in community volunteer work. Through her work and volunteering, Susan has been exposed to a wide range of human experience, and has developed a strong sense of social justice that has led her into activism, humanitarianism and politics. She was a long-standing director of the non-governmental organization, Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan (CW4WAfghan), is a Rotary Peace Scholar, a conflict resolution professional and a consultant in community engagement and facilitation. Susan served as the Green Party of PEI’s Shadow Critic for Health & Wellness from 2016 – 2019. Most recently Susan taught Adolescent Social-Emotional Health as a Sessional Instructor in the Department of Education at UPEI.
Charlene Kippenhuck was raised in Charlottetown, Labrador. She is an Inuit who is an avid hunter, fisher and outdoorswoman. She currently holds the position of Natural Resources Manager with NunatuKavut Community Council. She has over a decade of experience in administering aspects of land and resource management programs in the Northwest Territories and Newfoundland and Labrador, particularly in program administration and financial management She has a rich history in public service, having held a number of positions. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Arts and Certificate in Criminology from Memorial University.
Cathy Leslie, Nova Scotia Health Authority, Community Health Board Coordinator has expertise in community development, program development and evaluation, working with non-profits and community outreach. She believes that small, rural communities form the essential character of Nova Scotia, driven by the rural values of determined effort, careful use of resources, and giving help to each other.
Linda Liebenberg, PhD., is a researcher and evaluator with a core interest in children and youth with complex needs, and the communities they live in. Her work explores the promotion of positive youth development and mental health through development of community resilience, focusing often on initiatives driven by organizations and service providers. As a key component of this work, Linda reflects critically on how best to conduct research and evaluations with children and their communities, including participatory action research using image-based methods; sophisticated longitudinal quantitative designs; and the design of measurement instruments used with children and youth across multiple cultures. Linda has presented internationally and published extensively on these topics of research and youth.
Arianne Melara was born and raised in El Salvador and currently lives in New Brunswick, Canada. She graduated from St. Thomas University with an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Economics and International Relations. Her personal and professional background is characterized by her passion for diverse social issues and her strong dedication to make her community better through collaboration. Arianne has 6 years of experience working in the nonprofit sector. Before joining NBMC, she worked with an international organization supporting experiential service-learning programs with educators and students in Ontario. Arianne is the Manager of Youth Initiatives, Policy Lead and Stakeholder Engagement for the New Brunswick Multicultural Council, and one of her most notable accomplishments has been to lead the provincial and bilingual youth leadership program called Imagine NB. Some examples of additional initiatives she has led include
Curricula advocating forrecommendations to improve how multiculturalism and immigration is taught in K-12 schools, including the contributions of immigrants to Canada and New Brunswick, as well as supporting educators in creating culturally inclusive and representative school communities. Arianne has received notable recognitions such as: her nomination for the Top 25 Immigrants in Atlantic Canada Award; being featured as a “Young New Brunswicker to Watch” by Huddle Today and as one of seven “Young Women of Conviction” by CBC. When she isn’t at work, Arianne is sipping a cup of coffee, reading a non-fiction book, or hiking trails with Guacamole, her 4-month old, Weimaraner, furry son.
Adina Nault has lived on PEI for most of her life, and is proud to be part of the Acadienne community on PEI. She sits on the council for her regional Francophone Community Center in hopes to better engage our Francophone communities. She has a degree in Early Childhood Education, a certificate in non-profit administration and is proud to be trained in Handle With Care. She is the mother of three, two of whom are part of the LGBTQ+2 community. She is proud to see the strength they have to be themselves and tries her best to offer them a safe and supporting environment. This has only fuelled her belief in the importance of mental health in children and teenagers. “I believe that to care for the mental health of our children, we first need to care for the mental health of the adults that care for them and our community.”
Youth engagement is at the core of Chantal Peng’s advocacy and outreach. Going into her third-year as an Acadia University Bachelor of Music student, Chantal is actively involved in school and community. She serves as a Kings-Hants Youth Councillor, national Youth Advocate for healthcare and gender equality, and St. James Anglican Church Music Director. In summer 2019, Chantal had the life-changing opportunity to attend ASI as a Youth Leadership Program participant and returned this year as the Youth Leadership Coordinator. She was excited to engage with youth from across Atlantic Canada in this year’s Forum.
Tyler Simmonds is an Award Winning, Canadian Film Director and Keynote Speaker on mental health and mindfulness. Tyler has spoken at many notable events such as TEDx and We Day. His is clearly a message that resonates with many. In 2016, the Huffington Post named him one of the “10 Inspirational people under 30 you should be following on Twitter.”. Within the film world, Tyler continues to use his storytelling abilities to create impactful and engaging films that in hiswords are “Made to touch your soul.”
Maggie Snow, Clarkes Beach, NL. Executive Director of the SPLASH Centre – a non-profit, registered charity for at-risk youth and other marginalized groups. Responsible for all day-to-day operations, human resources, strategic planning, and financial management under direction of a volunteer Board of Directors. Bachelor’s Degree in Education, Bachelor’s Degree in Arts: Sociology and Gender Studies. Proven ability to make meaningful connections and involved in numerous nonprofit groups and organizations throughout the Eastern Region of Newfoundland, including Co-Chair of Communities Against Violence Board of Directors, Co-Chair of the Eastern Regional Wellness Coalition Steering Committee, Co-Chair of the All Hallows Elementary School Council. Dedicated to providing adequate access to services and resources, while acting as an advocate dedicated to creating programs and opportunities while promoting policies that help foster equity within our communities.
Edmund Morris, Eskasoni, NS. Undergrad at CBU. Until the end of October, Manager Crisis Services at Eskasoni Mental Health.