Board of Governors

The Board of Governors has the sole responsibility for the management, administration and control of the property, revenue, expenditures, business and affairs of the institution.

The Board of Governors consists of the following representatives, in accordance with the College and Institute Act:

  1. Eight or more persons appointed by the provincial government’s Lieutenant Governor in Council who shall  determine the length of their term and any renewals thereof;
  2. One person on the faculty of the College and elected by the faculty members, who shall serve a three-year term and may be elected to further terms;
  3. Two students, elected by the students, who shall each serve a one-year term and may be elected to further terms;
  4. One person who is part of the support staff and elected by the support staff, who shall serve a three-year term and may be elected to further terms;
  5. The President; and
  6. The Chair of Education Council

Members of the Board of Governors

Chair Juliette Cunningham

Juliette Cunningham was previously a Councillor in Vernon and the Vice-Chair of the Regional District of the North Okanagan, Vice-Chair of the Okanagan Basin Water Board as well as a business owner. She also has an extensive history of working with non-profit Boards such as the Women’s Centre, Junction Literacy, People Place, Museum and the Early Years Council.

Term: July 31, 2018 to July 31, 2024 (appointed)

Juliette Cunningham wearing dark framed glasses, standing with hands on a railing

Vice Chair Dale Safinuk

Dale Safinuk is a retired Financial Services Executive with TD Bank and most recently served as District Vice President.  In this role he was responsible for overseeing TD's retail operations and developing strategic partnerships throughout the southern interior of BC.  His career at TD Bank Group spans over 20 years in a variety of diverse roles including: Call Centre Management, Credit Centre Management and he has also worked in Branch Banking and Commercial Banking.

Dale has previously served on the Advisory Board for Ch'nook Indigenous Students Education at UBC; as Co-Chair of TD's Diversity Leadership Council for Indigenous people; was a member of TD's National Committee for Indigenous people; and served as Board Member with TD Friends of the Environment Foundation. He is a past Director (Vice Chair) for the United Way of Kamloops and past Director (Treasurer) for United Way of Trail.  Other community organizations include: Kelowna Minor Hockey, Derrick Figure Skating Club (Edmonton), along with Rotary clubs in Kamloops and Trail. 

Term: July 31, 2019 to July 31, 2025 (appointed) 

Vice Chair, Board of Governors, Dale Safinuk stand by a railing wearing a black suit jacket with a blue shirt underneath

Neil Fassina

Ex officio

Dr. Neil Fassina became Okanagan College's President in April 2021, drawn to the institution for its reputation for transforming lives and communities.

Fassina holds a PhD in Management from the Rotman School of Business at the University of Toronto, a BSc in Psychology from the University of Calgary and is a chartered professional in human resources (CPHR), and a chartered director through the Institute of Chartered Directors (ICD.D). As an active researcher, he has authored or co-authored a number of refereed articles, a Canadian Human Resource Management text, and pursues research interests in negotiations, applied decision making, and the role of education in shaping societies.

Prior to joining OC, Fassina was the President of Athabasca University (2016-21). He served previously as Provost and Vice President Academic at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) and the Dean of the JR Shaw School of Business and School of Hospitality and Culinary Arts. He has taught as part of his academic career at the University of Toronto, the University of Calgary, the University of Manitoba, and in executive environments.

Andrea Alexander

Term:  Aug. 1, 2020 to July 31, 2023 (appointed)

Andrea Alexander is a Councillor for Westbank First Nation. Prior to being elected, Ms. Alexander was the Executive Assistant to Westbank First Nation Council.  Previously she was a Junior Researcher in Intergovernmental Affairs for Westbank First Nation. Active in her community, Ms. Alexander sits on the First Nation Policing Program Stakeholder Panel and the Okanagan Nation Alliance Syilx Indian Residential School Committee Representative.  She also represents Council on the Westbank First Nation Economic Development Commission and the Sensisyusten School Board. Ms. Alexander holds a Bachelor of Arts in Indigenous Studies from the University of British Columbia Okanagan.  She also holds certificates in Indigenous Leadership, Governance, and Management Excellence – Indigenous Women in Leadership and Indigenous Leadership, Governance, and Management Excellence Leading Teams: Governance for Indigenous Councils and Boards from the Banff Centre.

Marcel Beerkens

Term: March 31, 2020 - July 31, 2024 (elected)

Marcel Beerkens joined Okanagan University College in 1998 and transitioned to Okanagan College in 2005. For many years, Marcel and his wife have been pleased to host a number of Okanagan College International Education students. Until recently, Marcel served six years as the BCGEU Support Staff Bargaining Unit Chairperson. Well versed in labour relations and occupational health and safety, he continues to apply his knowledge, skills and abilities on various committees both internally and externally.

Marcel holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Regina with a major in Psychology and received a technical designation from CompTIA in 2001 and a TESL Certificate from Okanagan College in 2004. In the pursuit of life-long learning, Marcel has enrolled in many of the annual professional development opportunities as offered by his employer and union.

JoAnn Fowler

Term:  Aug. 1, 2020 to July 31, 2023 (appointed)

JoAnn Fowler is a Mentor for new Social Workers for the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD). Previously Ms. Fowler was a Delegated Social Worker with MCFD. During her career at MCFD, she worked in Child Protection, with Adults with Disabilities, Children with Special Needs, in Youth Services and in Guardianship. Ms. Fowler also was Seconded as a Resource Social Worker and Director of Child Welfare Department for the Splatsin Band.   Active in her community, she is President of the Shuswap Children’s Association, Treasurer for the Enderby and District Community Resource Centre, and a Member of the Ashton Creek Riverside Community. Previously Ms. Fowler was Chairperson and Shop Steward for the BC Government Employees’ Union Local 605. She holds a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Victoria. 

Annika Kirk

Term: November 1, 2021 to October 31, 2022 (elected)

Annika Kirk is a full time second-year Business Administration student specializing in Accounting and Finance. At Okanagan College she serves as an Executive member in the Accounting Club (OCAC), sitting on the Promotions team and the Finance Committee, and as a volunteer member of the Okanagan Business Students Association. Currently she works as an accounting volunteer at The Kelowna Women’s Shelter and as an accounting tutor for the college. Previously Annika worked as a brewer in numerous breweries across the country.  The most recent being Vice and Virtue Brewing Co. in Kelowna where she worked diligently to create more diverse and inclusive environments for staff and patrons. Annika aims to apply for law school after writing her LSATS in Summer 2021 and is interested in specializing in tax law. She aspires to work with Non-Profit Organization’s and help create fair tax policies that better serve minorities and lower income citizens in Canada. Annika has joined the board to be a representative for mature students’ needs at Okanagan College and will work to ensure inclusivity and financial support for all student’s campus-wide.

Tina Lee

Term: July 31, 2018 to July 31, 2024 (appointed)

Tina Lee is an experienced communications and strategy professional from Penticton whose human rights and development work has spanned six continents and has ranged from influencing United Nations activity to developing municipal community engagement processes.

Choi Leong

Term: November 1, 2021 to October 31, 2022 (elected)

Choi Hou Leong is a third-year Business student at the Okanagan College – Kelowna Campus, whose specialty is in Finance. Over the past few years, Choi has been actively involved in various leadership positions, including serving two terms as a student representative on the Education Council Committee and serving as a Junior Director on the Okanagan Business Students’ Association last year.  Choi has experience participating in various standing committees, ad hoc committees, advisory groups, and shared governance.

Devin Rubadeau

Term: August 1, 2018 to July 31, 2024 (elected) 

Devin Rubadeau is a Business Professor at the Okanagan School of Business at Okanagan College, where he specializes in the areas of Strategic Management, Marketing, and Project Management.  Devin is heavily involved in student activities, acting as a Faculty Advisor for the Enactus Team, the Marketing Club, the Debate Club, and numerous other student projects.  Outside of Okanagan College, Devin is a professional sailing and windsurfing coach and Sailing Director of the Central Okanagan Sailing Association.  Devin sits on several regional and national boards and is the current Chair of Pacific Sport.  Devin is currently pursuing his PhD with a focus on Corporate Social Responsibility. 

Karley Scott

Term: July 31, 2019 to July 31, 2025 (appointed) 

Karley Scott is a Member of the Parole Board of Canada and also works as the principal of Karley Scott Consulting where she provides facilitation, mediation, strategic planning, and governance planning services; with a particular focus on supporting Indigenous communities.  Karley has served on the boards of the Metis Community Services Society and the local and provincial John Howard Society.  She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Saskatchewan, a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Calgary, and is a Qualified Arbitrator.

Meeting schedule 2022

January

2021/22 Financial Year

Board Meeting:
Jan 11, 2022
Type:
Regular session (transitional)
Location:
Kelowna

March

2021/22 Financial Year

Board Meeting:    
Mar 22, 2022
Type:
Regular session
Location:
Kelowna

May

2022/23 Financial Year

Board Meeting:
May 24, 2022
Type:
Regular session
Location:
Shuswap/Revelstoke

June

2022/23 Financial Year

Board Meeting:
June 22, 2022 (Wednesday)
Type:
Regular session (Incl. Strategy and Assessment)
Location:
South Okanagan

September

2022/23 Financial Year

Board Meeting:
Sep 27, 2022
Type:
Regular session
Location:
Vernon

October

2022/23 Financial Year

Board Meeting:
Oct 24-25, 2022
Type:
PD Session
Location:
TBD

December

2022/23 Financial Year

Board Meeting:
Dec 13, 2022
Type:
Regular session
Location:
Kelowna

February

2022/23 Financial Year

Board Meeting:
Feb 28, 2023
Type:
Regular session (if required)
Location:
Kelowna

March

2022/23 Financial Year

Board Meeting:
Mar 21, 2023
Type:
Regular session
Location:
Kelowna

Statements from the Board

Our thoughts are with the people of Ukraine

On behalf of Okanagan College and the Board of Governors, we are deeply concerned and saddened by the violence and aggression being experienced by the people of Ukraine.
Our thoughts are with all who are impacted by the pain, suffering, grief, and turmoil we are seeing. We join our global colleagues in the post-secondary community in voicing our hopes for a swift and peaceful resolution to the conflict.

Read the full message

Okanagan College Statement on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice

Okanagan College’s Board of Governors recognizes that a strategic focus on equity, diversity, inclusion, and social justice is essential to the well-being of the college and all its members.

Our mission is to transform lives and communities.  We are committed to imbuing the principles of equity, diversity, inclusion, and social justice into every corner of the College and thus into every possible aspect of how we can fulfill that mission.

We are committed to educating ourselves on what and how we can do better by being vulnerable and through our continuous commitment to learn, unlearn, and re-learn. We are persistent in planning how we can build upon the steps taken in the past and present.

The Board commits to embrace the principles of equity, diversity, inclusion and social justice in its deliberations and decisions and through the process of appointing members to the Board.