Campaign Team

Campaign team backs the trades

Okanagan College Foundation is pleased to introduce this stellar team of community supporters who have committed to take part in the Bright Horizons - Building for Skills campaign, designed to raise funds for what will be an exceptional new training complex at the Kelowna campus that will serve the needs of the B.C. Southern Interior and beyond.

Meet the members of the Campaign Leadership Team below.

Joining this volunteer team are industry leaders from the following sectors:

Campaign Leadership Team

Ben Stewart web

Honorary Chair

Ben Stewart is the Investment and Trade Commission for Asia for the B.C. government. Prior to this appointment, he was MLA for Westside-Kelowna from 2009 through to 2013 and served as cabinet minister in various portfolios. An entrepreneur, Ben founded and built Quails’ Gate Estate Winery into one of Canada’s leading estate wineries. He was on the board of the Kelowna General Hospital Foundation and has been active in the fundraising and establishment of the Brookhaven Extended Care Facility Campaign, Southern Interior Cancer Centre Campaign, and the Rotary Centre for the Arts.
Ph: 250-470-7676  /  E:

Dennis Gabelhouse web

Campaign Chair

Dennis Gabelhouse recently retired as General Manager from Global Okanagan TV in Kelowna after working for more than 35 years in the newspaper and television industries. Well-known throughout the Okanagan, Dennis has supported many Okanagan charities over the years, including serving as Campaign Chair for the Central and South Okanagan United Way’s highly successful 2009 and 2010 campaigns.
Ph: 250-862-0879  /  E:

Mike Roberts web

Campaign Ambassador

Mike Roberts
is a retired veteran broadcaster who built a career at CHBC starting in 1973. An Honorary Fellow of Okanagan College, Mike has been a strong supporter of the College helping spread the word about the institution’s innovative approaches to post-secondary education. Over the years, Mike has worked with numerous non-profit organizations helping to raise both profile and dollars.

Ph: 250-763-4177  /   E: 

Jim Hamilton web

President, Okanagan College

Jim Hamilton
has a long association with Okanagan College. He began his career with the institution in 1980 teaching English at the Vernon Campus. Prior to becoming President in 2004, Jim was actively engaged in the College, having served as member of the Okanagan University College Board of Governors, a faculty member, and as the Regional Dean of the North Okanagan. As President, Jim has served as Chair of the Trades Training Consortium of British Columbia.

Ph: 250-862-5628  /   E:

Alf Kempf web

President, Okanagan College Foundation

Alf Kempf
has been a partner with Pushor Mitchell law firm since 1985. He joined the Okanagan College Foundation board in 2011, serving initially as Vice President and Chair of the Foundation’s Advancement Committee, focused on marketing and fundraising. A long-time fundraiser for political parties at both the federal and provincial level, he also spent eight years on the board of the Kelowna Community Resources Society.

Ph: 250-869-1215  /   E: 


Raghwa Gopal web

Vice President, Okanagan College Foundation

Raghwa Gopal 
is a long-time Kelowna entrepreneur having co-founded and established Vadim Software. He is currently the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Okanagan College, Executive-in-Residence with Accelerate Okanagan, and President of Okanagan Angel Network.

Ph: 250-864-2115  /   E:

Sharron Simpson web

Community Chair and Director, Okanagan College Foundation

Sharron Simpson 
is a former City of Kelowna councillor and former chair of the Central Okanagan Regional District. An author specializing in the history of Kelowna, she holds a Master of Environmental Studies from York University. Sharron has been involved with various community fundraising campaigns and has served on several non-profit boards.

Ph: 250-878-8062  /   E: 


Heather Schneider web2

Regional Dean, Central Okanagan, Okanagan College

Heather Schneider 
has been the Regional Dean of the Central Okanagan since 2006, and is Chair of the Trades Complex Working Committee which is responsible for the construction of the Trades Complex. Heather previously led the College team that constructed the LEED’s gold Centre for Learning building on the Kelowna campus. Heather is a Rotarian and a member of several other volunteer boards including the International Children’s Games Committee and the current Chair of the Advisory Board for the Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission.

Ph: 250-762-5445 ext. 4789 / E: 

 Steve Moores

Dean of Trades and Apprenticeship, Okanagan College

Steve Moores
arrived at Okanagan College in January 2014 as the new Dean of Trades and Apprenticeship. He has a lengthy background in Trades training, having spent 23 years at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, including as Associate Dean in NAIT’s School of Trades. Steve is a certified Red Seal Journeyperson Machinist and holds a Master of Arts degree in Educational Administration and Supervision from San Diego State University.
Ph: 250-762-5445 ext. 4837  /  E: