Board of Directors
Megan D. Wallace
Lawyer, Perley-Robertson, Hill & McDougall LLP
Social Worker, Ottawa Catholic School Board
Director of Finance, The Glebe Centre Inc.
Recruiter, Stevenson & White Inc.
Police Officer, Ottawa Police Services
Communications/Marketing, Government of Canada
Manager, Creative Services, Halogen Software
Dr. Katherine Matheson
Child Psychiatrist, Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO)
McGarry Funeral & Cremation Services, Hulse, Playfair & McGarry
Shelagh Jane Woods
Director General (Retired), First Nations and Inuit Health, Health Canada
I frequently tell people that Youville’s graduation ceremony is my favorite day of the year – and it is absolutely true. To watch our students be recognized for their hard work and accomplishments is a real joy and a privilege. For our young moms, pursuing their education at Youville means they are choosing not only to improve their own lives, but also to make a positive choice that will make a profound difference in the lives of their children. The importance of this choice for both mother and child cannot be overstated. It has been my privilege to be a part of the 2014 – 2015 year at Youville Centre. This year our students worked towards achieving their high school education, improving their parenting skills, and pursuing personal goals of physical and mental health and wellness. It has been inspiring to witness the progress Youville’s young mothers have been capable of making in just one year. Among the many wonderful events this year at Youville Centre, we had the privilege of receiving a visit from Premier Kathleen Wynne – who took the time to tour our centre and sit down and chat with our students.
As a woman who was also a young mother, I am frequently struck by the negative messages we receive: teen mothers are so often told that we can’t do it, that advancement and accomplishment are beyond our reach – imagine receiving this message at 17 or 18 years old! That is why our conversation with Premier Wynne was so powerful: she shared with our students that when she was in high school it had never occurred to her that she would be Premier of Ontario and that since she entered politics in her late 30s she has gone from a part-time worker and full-time mom to where she is today. She conveyed to our students her belief in their ability to succeed and the power of the incremental steps they are taking toward their goals – to hear this message from the Premier herself was powerful for all of us.
Also this year I enjoyed my work as the Chair of the Mentorship Program Steering Committee. To see this new program grow and develop to serve Youville Centre’s young mothers has been very rewarding. I have enjoyed building relationships with our volunteer mentors, and learning more about the unique needs of our mentees, and how we can best serve them in the program. I look forward to another year leading the Mentorship Program Steering Committee.
I would be remiss if I did not note that the continued success of our students and our center would not be possible without our generous donor community, as well as our outstanding, hardworking staff and volunteers, under the extraordinary leadership of our Executive Director, Cindy Simpson. On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank Cindy, the staff and volunteers, and all of Youville Centre’s donors and community partners for making a commitment to helping our young mothers and their children. You truly have made a difference in the lives of Youville Centre’s clients. By helping our students and their children, you help to motivate, educate and nurture two generations.
Megan D. Wallace
I am a lawyer at Perley-Robertson, Hill & McDougall LLP specializing in corporate/commercial, not-for-profit & charity law. I am a member of the Bars of Ontario and Alberta. I belong to the County of Carleton Law Association, the Ontario Bar Association and the Canadian Bar Association. I am also a member of the Board of Safe Pet Ottawa.
I was a pregnant teenager and young mom myself and this gives me a little bit of perspective on some of the obstacles facing our students. When my two sons were young I was lucky enough to have a great deal of support from friends and family – and this support is a large part of why I have been able to be successful in my education, career and in parenting. Many of Youville’s young mothers do not have access to the network and resources that I had when I walked in their shoes – and Youville offers them the support they need. I am involved with Youville in hopes that I can be a small part of providing young mothers with the kind of support that I had when I was a young mom.
I am the Chief Social Worker at the Ottawa Catholic School Board. I am the Clinical Lead and Supervisor of Social Worker and Behaviour Consultants with the Ottawa Catholic School Board. I am the Lead of the Social Emotional Learning Team and a Leadership Team Member of Special Education and Student Services. I hold a Social Workers Services Diploma, a Bachelor of Social Work, Certified ASSIST training and a Masters of Social Work. I belong to the Ontario Association of Social Workers. I received a Director of Education Award and a Teacher’s Award, Continuing Education, Algonquin College. My passions are gardening and reading and I believe in what Youville Centre is about; providing mental health services, education and wellness to two generations of clients.
I am the Director of Finance and Administration for the Glebe Centre Inc, which operates a 254 bed Nursing Home, an Elderly Persons Centre and provides support services for seniors living in neighbouring communities. I am a certified CPA (Chartered Professional Accountant). My passions are running and biking and I support Youville because I admire the courage and strength of the young moms participating in the program.
Sharon Ann Lloyd
I grew up in Montreal (je suis bilingue!) and have been living in the Ottawa area for the past 10 years. I have a long history in customer service and truly believe in creating “Raving Fans” out of everyone I deal with. I love meeting new people and building relationships. I work as a Recruiter at Stevenson and White, an Ottawa-based recruitment firm specializing in Finance and Accounting positions. The idea of helping someone find their dream job is very exciting to me and I do my best to find candidates the perfect fit to ensure they love what they’re doing, and where they’re doing it. When I’m not at work, my husband and two children keep me busy. We love to travel and are not afraid to admit we’re Disney-addicts! I’m on the Board of Directors at the Youville Centre and am passionate about supporting the young women there as they change the trajectory of their lives, as well as their children’s lives.
I believe that most of us want to do good in the world. We try and practice tolerance and compassion in our daily lives, and we teach our children these same values. If given the opportunity, I think most of us would choose a career that would allow us to contribute to positive change. My career is just that – an extension of that desire to make a positive impact. As a fundraising consultant with Good Works, a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP Ottawa Chapter) and a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE), I have the pleasure of working with many amazing charities. What I do is help connect donors with the causes they care about, and help cultivate and build meaningful relationships.
Raising my daughter on my own was not always easy, but if I had to do it over again, I wouldn’t change a thing. We have developed a bond so strong that I believe is unique to single parent families. We’ve pulled together in tough times, and we’ve laughed together during the good times. I remember when my daughter was little, I’d worry about not being able to provide all of the things that other parents could, but I’ve learned that the most important things you can offer your children don’t cost a thing – unconditional love, attention, rules and responsibility, stability, safety and security.
My daughter will turn 20 this summer and after completing one year of university in Halifax, she’s decided she wants to follow in her grandmother’s footsteps and has recently completed her salesperson training with the Ontario Real Estate Association. The world is her oyster!
I truly believe that being a parent is the most important and rewarding job in the world and I want to help support other young mothers on their own parenting journeys. I have so enjoyed my work with Youville Centre over the last two years. As a Youville Mentor, I have had the pleasure of building a special relationship with Nikki, one of Youville Centre’s young moms. I’m so proud to share that Nikki graduated in June 2016 and was chosen as the valedictorian of her class! As a member of the Mentorship Program Steering Committee, Youville’s Fundraising Committee and a Youville Centre Board Member, I look forward to continuing to support more young women like Nikki.
I am a communications and marketing professional with exceptional strategic, brand management and leadership skills. I thrive in a fast-paced, team-oriented environment. I have expertise in concept development, creative direction, graphic design, print/digital production, and copy writing. I am versatile, results-oriented and driven by challenge. I currently work as a Consultant and Designer at the Canadian Club of Ottawa. I was awarded the Summit International Creative Award in 2009 for my work at United Way.
I am a Pediatric Psychiatrist at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario and Assistant Professor at the University of Ottawa. I am a Medical Doctor and Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada. I belong to the Canadian Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the Ontario Psychiatric Association and the Ontario Medical Association. I received the “Making a Difference” Award from CHEO/The Royal in recognition of outstanding contributions to mental health service for youth (2015) and the “Rising Researcher” Award from CHEO (2015). I have had eight articles published in multiple medical journals and sixteen abstracts published at various medical conferences. I am passionate about my work, particularly infant and early childhood mental health, ultimate frisbee and mindfulness. I believe that the work that Youville does is crucial to prevent the intergenerational transmission of mental illness, as young mothers and their children are some of the most vulnerable members of society. Youville is one of the only locations in all of Ottawa offering attachment-based therapy (infant and early childhood mental health services).
I am in my 55th year of the business founded for the McGarry Legacy; Hulse, Playfair and McGarry. I was mentored by Charles Hulse who is now deceased. I sat on and was Chair of our Provincial Regulatory Board. I am also Past President of our Provincial and National Associations. I belonged to the Kiwanis Club for fourty years including a term as President. I was co-founder of our “New” Ottawa Senators in 1990 and was Trustee and Senior Past Chair of the former Ottawa Board of Education. I was also co-founder of Crime Stoppers (Ottawa City Police) under Chief Flanagan. I received the “Order of Ottawa” from the City and the “Cornerstone Award” for Canada Funeral Professionals. I authored/published two books (a story and an album) on my profession in 2012 entitled “From Paupers to Prime Ministers” which raised proceeds for the Queensway Carleton Hospital Foundation. I have appeared many times in the Ottawa Citizen, various Community Newspapers and Trade Magazines. I enjoy spending time at the cottage and mentoring new employees. I am passionate about skiing and Hulse, Playfair and McGarry Hockey.
Shelagh Jane Woods
I am retired after a 25+ year career in the Federal Government where I held a number of Executive positions in the Privy Council Office, the Climate Change Secretariat, and Health Canada’s First Nations and Inuit Health Branch, inter alia. I am involved with the Executive Committee of Lac St.-François-Xavier Association in Montfort, Québec; and One World Grannies Ottawa (associated with the Stephen Lewis Foundation). I was the recipient of three Deputy Minister’s Awards: Indian Affairs and Northern Development; the Privy Council Office; and Health Canada. My personal passions are sewing, reading, gardening, quilting, walking, piano, and the Montreal Canadiens. I support Youville because of the strong evidence of the invaluable work that Youville does to help young mothers and their children improve their lives and develop their potential.