Board of Directors
2018/19 Board of Directors – Click for Bios
- Bob Meyer, President
- Carol Andison
- Sarah Clark
- Dan Cox
- Morgan Gough
- Brandon Ma
- Julie Menten
- Jodi Moss
- Jude Platzer
- Doug Querns
- Rob Wallis
- Sandy Biggerstaff, Executive Director
Bob Meyer, President
Soon after retiring from BC Rail as a Senior Systems Analyst, Bob took his Distress Services Training at the Crisis Centre in July 2005. In 2006 Bob became a Training Assistant and soon thereafter took on Buddy/Mentor work with new trainees. To date Bob has completed well over 1500+ hours at the Crisis Centre. For nearly ten years Bob was an integral part of the day-to-day operation of the Distress Line. While volunteering his time as Crisis Responder, Bob created skills guidelines for the Training Assistance role and also took on a leadership role to mentor Training Assistants. Bob has been a great role model for Crisis Centre volunteers and has continued his leadership work as a member of the Board of Directors.
Carol is a retired school Principal who worked for the Vancouver School Board for over 30 years. She started her working life working with teens in care, as a Child Care worker, then a Family Support worker. She returned to SFU to do her teaching certificate and started teaching for the Vancouver School Board in 1981. After a few years of teaching in the regular classroom, Carol decided she wanted to work in Special Education. She took on the position as the teacher of students with behavioral difficulties, she continued in this job for seven years until she moved to Calgary. In Calgary, she taught in a treatment center for young offenders and returned to Vancouver a year later to become a Learning Assistance/ESL teacher. At this point, Carol started her Masters of Arts at SFU; and simultaneously began her career as a school administrator. A position she enjoyed thoroughly until the day she retired in June of 2013. While Principal at Strathcona, she was on the board of the School Dental clinic and in those five years, the committee fundraised and built a sustainable dental clinic to serve school children in the downtown eastside. Carol resides in White Rock with her husband and dog.
Sarah is a Communications Manager at TELUS where she designs and executes a complex corporate communication strategy for a team of 3,000 customer facing team members. Before joining TELUS, Sarah was editor-in-chief of internal news at BC Hydro. Sarah is an active volunteer in the community and most recently co-chaired Young Executives for Success (YES!) Vancouver, a fundraising arm of Dress for Success. A graduate of the graphic design program at BCIT, she also owns and operates a boutique creative studio. Sarah is certified by the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD) in not-for-profit governance and has experience in corporate communication, social media marketing and fundraising.
Dr. Dan Cox is an Assistant Professor at the University of British, Counselling Psychology Program. Dan completed his B.S. in Psychology at York College of Pennsylvania and his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Kansas in 2009. He did his clinical internship at Brigham Young University’s Counseling Center. Following his degree, Dan did a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Medical and Clinical Psychology at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU), focusing on theoretical and applied suicide research. Following his post-doctoral fellowship, he then spent a year at the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress in the Department of Psychiatry at USU as a Research Psychologist before starting at UBC in 2012. Dan’s scholarly interests include social support’s impact on mental health & well-being; what facilitates help seeking; predictors of suicide; the process and outcome of group and individual psychotherapy; trauma, stress & coping; and veteran & military populations.
Morgan Gough is a Quantitative Analyst at Connor, Clark & Lunn Investment Management. Prior to joining CC&L IM, Morgan founded Alpha Numerics Capital Management, Ltd., where he built and implemented successful equity trading algorithms; he has also served a brief stint as a consultant. Morgan earned a Bachelor of Commerce degree (honours) from UBC.
Brandon is a Senior Manager in the Audit and Accounting practice of the professional services firm of KPMG. He is a designated Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA), and has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from UBC. With KPMG, Brandon has worked with numerous not-for-profit and public sector organizations. Brandon has volunteered extensively with Scouts Canada at both a grassroots level and in a volunteer managerial level. Most recently, he completed a 3-year term as the lead volunteer responsible for Scouting activities in the Lower Mainland.
Julie Menten practices in all areas of employment, labour, human rights, and privacy law at Roper Greyell LLP. Combining her legal expertise with more than a decade of professional experience counselling people with mental health issues, she brings a unique skill set and perspective when advising employers who are addressing complex issues in the workplace, particularly those relating to workplace bullying and harassment, mental health disabilities and drug and alcohol problems. Prior to joining Roper Greyell, Julie clerked at the British Columbia Court of Appeal. She received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Victoria in Child and Youth Care with distinction, and a Master of Science in Couple and Family Therapy from the University of Guelph. She received her Juris Doctor from Western University with distinction.
Jodi is a Partner in the U.S. & Cross Border Taxation Services practice of the Chartered Accounting firm of KPMG. Prior to obtaining her Chartered Accountant designation, Jodi completed her Bachelor of Commerce degree in International Business at the Univ. of Victoria. Jodi has volunteered with a number of not-for-profit organizations, including work in Victoria, Nova Scotia, Uganda and Egypt. In addition, she has worked with several not-for-profit clients at KPMG. Jodi’s accounting and analytical skills, together with her knowledge of not for profit operations, are an asset to the Crisis Centre. Jodi’s other interests include dance, hiking & Celtic fiddle. In 2017, Jodi received the annual Women in Finance, PEAK Award in the Rising Star category.
After the tragic loss of her 15 year old son, Jude founded the Josh Platzer Society for Teen Suicide Prevention in 2001 and turned her grief into action. Since this time, she has been dedicated to “breaking the silence,” and removing the stigma of suicide through open conversations with parents, youth educators, and medical and social service professionals. Jude’s efforts have ensured the success of three major forums on suicide prevention and she has motivated students to distribute 10,000 wrist bands, imprinted with crisis line phone number and website. Through her ongoing and expanding efforts, Jude Platzer has made a profound and lasting impact on the health and well-being of BC’s youth. Jude is a recipient of the BC Community Achievement Awards.
Doug has worked for corporate and not-for profit organizations for over 20 years in senior Finance & accounting roles and currently is the Director of Finance, First United Church Community Ministry Society. He holds an MBA from the University of BC and is a CPA with a CGA legacy designation. He has been involved in the community in a voluntary capacity for a number of years. Doug currently serves as President of the Board for the North Shore Stroke recovery Centre and has previously held Board roles with BC Stroke Recovery association, Autism Society of BC and Mt Seymour United church. Doug’s community involvement includes 13 years as a member of North Shore Search & Rescue and ten years as a youth soccer coach for the North Shore Girls Soccer Club.
Rob is a Senior Consultant with VELA Wealth Management Inc. VELA Wealth creates meaningful, lifelong relationships with successful entrepreneurs and their families, connecting them to the power, potential and responsibility of building and protecting their wealth. British born and raised, Rob and his family moved to Vancouver in 2016. When not working or spending time with family, Rob loves traveling, being outdoors, hiking and skiing. Rob’s close friend took his life in 2013. This tragic experience was the motivation for Rob becoming involved in suicide prevention serving as a board member for the Crisis Centre.
Sandy Biggerstaff, Executive Director
Sandy has spent 20 years successfully cultivating stakeholder relationships and leading cross-functional teams in both post-secondary and non-profit sectors. As an integrated and strategic thinker, her leadership philosophy is firmly grounded in a commitment to exceptional communications skills and open consultation as the best way to foster positive outcomes. Her experience within large and medium sized service-based organizations has taught her that relationships matter, particularly when initiating new projects where dialogue and consultation are critical to program implementation and organizational excellence. She holds an undergraduate degree in History/English, a graduate degree in Business, a Canadian Risk Management designation, 10 years of training in conflict resolution, and is currently completing her Certified Human Resource Professional Designation.