Board of Directors

Each Board member must express and demonstrate a commitment to the mission of the organization and be fully committed to the vision and service of Unionville Home Society (UHS) corporations. Board members must be willing to give time and resources (skills, experience, finances) in providing leadership to UHS.

In addition, the Board has a fiduciary responsibility to residents, clients, their families, donors and the community – and is ultimately responsible for attracting funding and resources to ensure the financial viability of the organization and its programs.

2023-2024 Board Members

Click on the Board member name for their bio.

Unionville Home Society

Philip Gunn - Chair

Philip Gunn involvement with Union Villa started years ago and he has been involved in a number of committees and held board positions during that time.  Phil's previous positions were Chair of the Wyndham Gardens Board and Chair of the audit committee. In June 2022, Phil was elected to the position of Chair of the Unionville home Society.

He has over 20 years of experience in the commercial real estate sector and currently holds the position of Vice President Asset Management with GWL Realty Advisors.  In this role he is responsible for a retail and industrial real estate portfolio with a value of $1.5 billion located in GTA.  Philip holds his Certified Public Accounting, (CPA) designation and is a licensed real estate broker.

He has been a resident of the City of Markham for 10+ years. During that time he has been an active volunteer with numerous organization within the community and is currently a member of the committee of adjustments for the City of Markham.

Philip Enright - Vice Chair

Philip Enright

Philip was appointed to the UHS Board in 2016.

He is a practising lawyer of over 30 years with the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General. He received his B.A. from the University of Toronto in 1982 and his L.L.B. from the University of Ottawa in 1985.

Philip Enright is a long-time Markham resident and is married with two grown children. In between his court litigation and management work with the prosecution office, Philip salvages his sanity by playing piano and cooking up various food delights; there is nothing like good music, good food and good wine to balance the challenges of life.

Lyndsey McIntyre - Treasurer

Lyndsey McIntyre

Lyndsey McIntyre joined the Board of Directors at UHS in 2013, and also serves on the Chair of the Audit Committee.  Her connection to UHS goes back over 30 years to when her grandmother was a resident at Union Villa.

Lyndsey holds an Honours degree in Business Administration from Wilfrid Laurier University and is a Chartered Professional Accountant.

She is a partner in Grant Thornton’s Charity a Not-for-Profit practice group in Southern Ontario. She oversees the delivery of audit, tax and advisory services to clients in the not-for-profit sector.  Lyndsey has worked with charities and not-for-profit organizations for over 15 years.

Glenn Crosby - Immediate Past Chair

Glenn CrosbyGLENN CROSBY is a Senior Vice President and broker for Lennard Commercial Realty. With over 50 years of successful sales experience, Glenn is a skilled communicator, powerful networker, and an influential leader in our community.

Glenn has built a large network in the York Region from many years of community involvement and dedication. He is a committed community leader who volunteers time to several regional non-profit boards. Glenn stepped down as Chair after serving over 15 years as Chair of New Unionville Home Society.

His past positions include Chairman of the Board for Markham Stouffville Hospital; Vice-Chairman on the Mayor’s Task Force Against the Markham Dumps; Chair of the York Region Hospital Planning Forum and Chair of the Markham Board of Trade.

Glenn is the recipient of numerous awards including the Markham Board of Trade Anthony Roman Award in 2008.  Other awards include Ontario Volunteer Service Award in 2017.

Debra Ambrose

Debra Ambrose joined the Unionville Home Society in 2021 (previously NUHS).  She has been on the Wyndham Gardens (WG) Apartments of Unionville Board as Treasurer since June 2019 and in June 2022 became WG Board Chair. Debra also served on the Unionville Home Society Foundation Board between 2016 and 2021.

She holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Waterloo and a Business and Marketing Diploma from Seneca College.

Debra works as a Realtor with the Benczik/Kavanagh RE/MAX All-Stars Team focusing primarily on the Toronto, GTA and Markham areas.

Debra worked for Aviva Canada as the Senior Vice President of the Direct To Consumer Insurance Business and handled all large strategic partners.  As well, Debra held a senior role at  American Express Canada as the Head of Financial Services and Product Development. In this capacity Debra led the strategic development of all affinity partnerships for the Insurance and Financial Services Division.

Debra along with her husband Bill have lived in the Unionville/Markham area for over 25 years.

 

Tara Clucas

Tara Clucas was first introduction to the Unionville Home Society many years ago when she joined the Union Villa gala planning committee and remained an active member prior to joining the Unionville Society Home Foundation Board in 2021. She graduated from Dalhousie University and holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree with a major in Marketing. Her career began in experiential and event marketing and she currently is the head of Canadian events at TD Bank where she leads a team who runs both in person and virtual events across North America. She grew up in Markham and her driving force for continuing to support Union Villa and UHS comes from firsthand experience seeing the quality of care that her grandmother received during her time at the Villa.

Paul Cousens
Paul Cousens Paul Cousens was appointed to the New Unionville Home Society Board in 2017. Paul grew up in the community and still lives in Unionville with his wife Lesley and his 2 children. His initial connection to Unionville Home Society started with the residency of his grandmother Mabel Cousens in 1994, and also through his parents, Don and Aline Cousens, who were long standing volunteers and supporters of Union Villa. After graduating from Wilfrid Laurier University’s Business Administration Program, Paul has enjoyed working for over 25 years in high technology sales management.    Paul brings a global perspective to the Board having lived and worked abroad in both Singapore and Munich.
Tracey Deline

Tracey Deline joined the board in June 2021.  Tracey brings over twenty-five years of Human Resources experience ranging from senior executive positions in strategy development to tactical implementation in both the public and private sector. Specific expertise in Talent Management and HR Business Partner, partnering with senior leaders to successfully create and/or deliver talent strategies.

 

Dan Horchik

Dan Horchik obtained an Honours Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Wilfrid Laurier University in 1979.  After earning his law degree at the University of Windsor in 1982, Dan spent seven years practicing law with the Toronto firm Borden & Elliot (now Borden Ladner Gervais).  

From 1989 to 2000 Dan managed a privately held real estate company.  In 2000, Dan was first elected to Council in Markham and was re-elected in 2003 and 2006.

Dan has been the Chair of Markham District Energy Inc. and also the Town of Markham Budget Committee.  He has been a Director of PowerStream Holdings Inc. and also for the Markham Stouffville Hospital.  He is currently a Co-Chair of Collus Powerstream Corp.

Audrey Jamieson

Audrey JamiesonAudrey Jamieson joined the UHS Foundation Board in June of 2017.  Her brother Rob van Velzen was an active board member for over 6 years before his passing in 2011.  Audrey is currently the Vice Chair.

Audrey has a Political Science BA from Western University. She is the founder and president of Marketing Kitchen Inc. a leading Canadian marketing production company that specializes in helping businesses acquire and retain clients or donors.

One of her great achievements is winning The Markham Board of Trade Entrepreneurship Award in 2017.

Clinton C. Hugh

In June 2023, Clinton was appointed to the Unionville Home Society board and supports the organization on the Building and Property committee.

Clinton has over 25 years of experience in the construction industry and currently holds the position of Vice President Construction with Govan Brown & Associate Limited’s Building Group.  In this role he is responsible for the business unit’s market direction, performance, and operations across the GTA.  Clinton holds his Bachelor’s Degree in Architectural Science, specializing in Building Science and Project Management.  He is a LEED ® Accredited Professional and holds his Gold Seal Certification in Project Management.

Clinton is married with two children and has been a resident of the City of Markham for 15+ years.  Clinton is an avid outdoorsman who loves to fish and golf.  In his spare time as a self-proclaimed foodie, he loves to experiment with different recipes on the Barbeque and Smoker.

Andy Taylor

Andy Taylor is the Chief Administrative Officer for the City of Markham reporting to the Mayor and Council.  He leads the Corporation with his Executive Leadership Team consisting of the Commissioners of Corporate Services, Development Services and Community & Fire Services.  Also reporting directly to him are the Director of Human Resources and the Town Solicitor.

Markham, known as the High-Tech capital of Canada, is a municipality of more than 330,000 residents centrally located in the Greater Toronto Area.  Markham is Canada’s most diverse community and is home to many of Canada’s leading life science and technology businesses. Recipient of a 2010 Canada Award for Excellence – Silver for outstanding achievements in quality, customer service, and a healthy workplace, Markham is renowned for its rich heritage, vibrant neighbourhoods and leadership on the environment and urban design.

Andy is an Excellence Canada champion, sits on the Board of Governors of Excellence Canada and also sits on the Board of Directors of the Markham Board of Trade and the New Unionville Home Society Board of Directors.  He is the President of Markham Enterprises Corporation and the Treasurer of Markham District Energy Inc.  Markham was the first large municipality in North America to use the Internet in a binding election in 2003 and continued its use for all subsequent elections.  Andy has been instrumental in introducing numerous e-government solutions to Markham including the launch of the Markham Portal Website in June 2011.

Andy holds a wealth of experience in both the public and private sector.  Prior to joining the Town in 1992, he worked 10 years in the private sector in senior positions.  Andy obtained his Chartered Accountant (C.A.) designation with Deloitte Chartered Accountants, earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Toronto and an Honours Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Windsor.

David Rackus

David Raskus

David Rackus joined the Board in June 2023.   David is a graduate of the University of Waterloo (BMath) and Wilfrid Laurier University (MBA).  He has over 35 years of business and technology experience, much of it the field of healthcare and related sectors. David is currently Senior Vice President of Digital Business and Technology Solutions at Sun Life in Toronto.

David and his wife Danute have lived in Unionville for the past 15 years.

Robert Cattle

 

Robert Cattle  joined the UHS Board in June 2023.

 

Samantha van Velzen

Samantha van Velzen

Samantha is a practicing lawyer who serves as legal counsel for a global corporation within the Finance industry. She is a graduate of Dalhousie University where she earned her Bachelor of Commerce degree with a major in Finance. She also holds an LLM from City, University of London and is a licensee of the Law Society of Ontario. Samantha is also a member of the Ontario Bar Associations and the Women in Law Association of Ontario.

Samantha grew up in Unionville and in 2011 Samantha began her involvement with the Villa as co-chair of Union Villa’s Annual Dinner Party and continued to volunteer until her appointment to the board in 2020. Her passion for senior care came from her father, Rob van Velzen, who was an active board member of UHS for six years before his passing in 2011.

 

Abby Katz Starr - Secretary
Abby Katz Starr Abby Katz Starr is the CEO of New Unionville Home Society (NUHS) and its affiliate corporations.  Prior to joining NUHS in February 2020, she worked for the Ontario Public Service for over 30 years in a variety of different ministries, in a number of senior roles. In October 2011, Abby was the Director of the Retirement Home Project with a mandate to bring the Retirement Homes Legislation fully into force and support the development of the governance and accountability structure to oversee the Retirements Homes Regulatory Authority. Abby then became the Director for the Ministry for Seniors and Accessibility (MSAA), a newly created position in recognition of the increased program and policy responsibilities related to the provincial response to the rapidly changing demographics. In January 2016, she took on the role of Interim Assistant Deputy Minister of MSAA and in September 2016 was appointed permanently as Assistant Deputy Minister of MSAA. Abby has an extensive background in seniors’ issues, beginning her career as a social worker with a gerontology focus working in both institutional as well as community settings. Abby brings her vast experience in organizational leadership, regulatory policy, corporate governance, policy development as well as strategic and corporate planning and reporting.      

Unionville Home Society Foundation

Patrick O'Hanlon - Chair

Patrick O'Hanlon Patrick O'Hanlon joined the Foundation Board in 2012 and was appointed  Foundation Chair in 2013.

Audrey Jamieson - Vice Chair

Audrey Jamieson joined the UHS Foundation Board in June of 2017.  Her brother Rob van Velzen was an active board member for over 6 years before his passing in 2011.  Audrey is currently the Vice Chair.

Audrey has a Political Science BA from Western University. She is the founder and president of Marketing Kitchen Inc. a leading Canadian marketing production company that specializes in helping businesses acquire and retain clients or donors.

One of her great achievements is winning The Markham Board of Trade Entrepreneurship Award in 2017.

Ted Madden
Ted Madden Ted Madden originally served on the UHS Board between 1993 to 2001 and was recently appointed to the New Unionville Home Society and Unionville Home Society Foundation boards in 2012. Graduate of York University in 1973 with a Honours Business Administration, Ted began his career with 13 years at IBM Canada, focusing on small and medium sized Canadian companies primarily in the IT industry. Initially concentrating in sales management, Ted moved to general management and had the unique opportunity to lead several companies as President/CEO including Bull HN Information Systems, Pitney Bowes Canada, Interactive Media Corporation (now Lavalife) and Momentum.com. In 2001, Ted launched his own company, TM and Associates, working and investing in start-up Canadian businesses. The most successful of these businesses was IntelliResponse, a Waterloo start-up that we eventually sold to a US based company.  Ted was elected chair of York Technology Association (now Techconnex) from 2005 through 2007. In 2012, Ted purchased and operated the first Nurse Next Door franchise in York Region, merging it with another franchise in 2015. Ted is now “mostly” retired, enjoying other aspects of life with his wife Shirley.
Tara Clucas

Tara Clucas was first introduced to the Unionville Home Society many years ago when she joined the Union Villa gala planning committee and remained an active member prior to joining the Unionville Society Home Foundation Board in 2021. She graduated from Dalhousie University and holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree with a major in Marketing. Her career began in experiential and event marketing and she currently is the head of Canadian events at TD Bank where she leads a team who runs both in person and virtual events across North America. She grew up in Markham and her driving force for continuing to support Union Villa and UHS comes from firsthand experience seeing the quality of care that her grandmother received during her time at the Villa.

Samantha van Velzen

 

Samantha van VelzenSamantha van Velzen joined the Foundation Board in June 2023 in addition to being on the UHS Board and the Wyndham Gardens Apartments of Unionville Board.  Samantha is the Chair of the Governance Committee.  She is a practicing lawyer who serves as legal counsel for a global corporation within the Finance industry. She is a graduate of Dalhousie University where she earned her Bachelor of Commerce degree with a major in Finance. She also holds an LLM from City, University of London and is a licensee of the Law Society of Ontario. Samantha is also a member of the Ontario Bar Associations and the Women in Law Association of Ontario.

Samantha grew up in Unionville and in 2011 Samantha began her involvement with the Villa as co-chair of Union Villa’s Annual Dinner Party and continued to volunteer until her appointment to the UHS board in 2020. Her passion for senior care came from her father, Rob van Velzen, who was an active board member of UHS for six years before his passing in 2011.

 

Abby Katz Starr - Secretary
Abby Katz Starr Abby Katz Starr is the CEO of New Unionville Home Society (NUHS) and its affiliate corporations.  Prior to joining NUHS in February 2020, she worked for the Ontario Public Service for over 30 years in a variety of different ministries, in a number of senior roles. In October 2011, Abby was the Director of the Retirement Home Project with a mandate to bring the Retirement Homes Legislation fully into force and support the development of the governance and accountability structure to oversee the Retirements Homes Regulatory Authority. Abby then became the Director for the Ministry for Seniors and Accessibility (MSAA), a newly created position in recognition of the increased program and policy responsibilities related to the provincial response to the rapidly changing demographics. In January 2016, she took on the role of Interim Assistant Deputy Minister of MSAA and in September 2016 was appointed permanently as Assistant Deputy Minister of MSAA. Abby has an extensive background in seniors’ issues, beginning her career as a social worker with a gerontology focus working in both institutional as well as community settings. Abby brings her vast experience in organizational leadership, regulatory policy, corporate governance, policy development as well as strategic and corporate planning and reporting.  
Phil Gunn - Ex Officio

Philip Gunn involvement with Union Villa started years ago and he has been involved in a number of committees and held board positions during that time.  Phil's previous positions were Chair of the Wyndham Gardens Board and Chair of the audit committee. In June 2022, Phil was elected to the position of Chair of the Unionville home Society.

He has over 20 years of experience in the commercial real estate sector and currently holds the position of Vice President Asset Management with GWL Realty Advisors.  In this role he is responsible for a retail and industrial real estate portfolio with a value of $1.5 billion located in GTA.  Philip holds his Certified Public Accounting, (CPA) designation and is a licensed real estate broker.

He has been a resident of the City of Markham for 10+ years. During that time he has been an active volunteer with numerous organization within the community and is currently a member of the committee of adjustments for the City of Markham.

Wyndham Gardens Apartments of Unionville

Debra Ambrose - Chair

Debra Ambrose joined the Wyndham Gardens Apartments of Unionville Board as Treasurer in June 2019 and stepped into the role of Chair in June 2022.  Debra is also a member of the Unionville Home Society Board. Debra served on the Unionville Home Society Foundation Board from 2016 to 2020. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Waterloo and a Business and Marketing Diploma from Seneca College.

Debra works as a Realtor with the Benczik/Kavanagh RE/MAX All-Stars Team focusing primarily on the Toronto, GTA and Markham areas.

Debra was  with Aviva Canada as the Senior Vice President of the Direct To Consumer Insurance Business and handled all large strategic partners.  As well, Debra held a senior role at  American Express Canada as the Head of Financial Services and Product Development. In this capacity Debra led the strategic development of all affinity partnerships for the Insurance and Financial Services Division.

Debra along with her husband Bill have lived in the Unionville/Markham area for over 25 years.

 

 

Samantha van Velzen - Treasurer

Samantha van Velzen

Samantha is a practicing lawyer who serves as legal counsel for a global corporation within the Finance industry. She is a graduate of Dalhousie University where she earned her Bachelor of Commerce degree with a major in Finance. She also holds an LLM from City, University of London and is a licensee of the Law Society of Ontario. Samantha is also a member of the Ontario Bar Associations and the Women in Law Association of Ontario.

Samantha grew up in Unionville and in 2011 Samantha began her involvement with the Villa as co-chair of Union Villa’s Annual Dinner Party and continued to volunteer until her appointment to the board in 2020. Her passion for senior care came from her father, Rob van Velzen, who was an active board member of UHS for six years before his passing in 2011.

 

Tracey Deline

 

Tracey Deline joined the board in June 2021.  Tracey brings over twenty-five years of Human Resources experience ranging from senior executive positions in strategy development to tactical implementation in both the public and private sector. Specific expertise in Talent Management and HR Business Partner, partnering with senior leaders to successfully create and/or deliver talent strategies

Astley Dennis

Astley Dennis

Astley Dennis, B.Comm., CPA, CA. has been a Wyndham Gardens Apartments of Unionville Board member since September, 2015. He is also the Treasurer of Wyndham Gardens Residents’ Association.

He graduated from Sir George Williams University (Concordia) in 1971 with a Bachelor of Commerce. His Accounting/Auditing profession covers 46 years - from 1971 to 2017.

He retired from professional Accounting/Auditing practice in 1991, but since then, he has been actively involved in volunteer services, including being the Treasurer and Chair of the Governance Committee of Tropicana Community Services Organization from 1997 to 2006.  He was also a member of the Administration & Audit Committee of the United Way of Greater Toronto from 2007 to 2011. He currently is a member of the York Region Accessibility Advisory Committee since 2015.

His notable achievements include being a CPA Life Member, obtaining the Certificate of Appreciation for his many years of dedicated and committed voluntary services to Tropicana in June, 2006. He was selected to be a member of the York Region Appeal Panel for the Mobility Plus Hearings from 2015 to present.

Ruth Harvilla

Ruth Harvilla joined Wyndham Gardens Apartments of Unionville Board June 2021.

Ruth graduated from University of Toronto in 1981 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Occupational Therapy.  She worked in a variety of health care and community settings including hospital, home care, children’s treatment centre, and early intervention program for children.   At the beginning of her career she worked with seniors who had a variety of medical conditions and needs. This was followed by many years of working with children who had special needs.

Ruth grew up in Thornhill and currently resides in Unionville. Her father has been a resident of Union Villa since Dec. 2020.

She is keen to represent the needs of Wyndham Gardens residents   through her participation on the WGAU board.

Philip Gunn - Ex Officio

Philip Gunn has been a resident of the City of Markham for 10 years during that time has been an active volunteer with a number organizations within the community and is currently a member of the committee of adjustments for the City of Markham.  He has over 20 years of experience in the commercial real estate sector and currently holds the position of Vice President Asset Management with GWL Realty Advisors.  In this role he is responsible for a retail and industrial real estate portfolio with a value of $1.5 billion located in GTA.  Philip holds his Certified Public Accounting, (CPA) designation and is a licensed real estate broker.

His involvement with Union Villa started years ago and he has been involved in a number of committees and held board positions during that time. He is currently tne Chair of the Wyndham Gardens Board and chairs the audit committee in addition to his position as a member of the board for New Unionville Home Society.

Abby Katz Starr - Secretary
Abby Katz Starr Abby Katz Starr is the CEO of New Unionville Home Society (NUHS) and its affiliate corporations.  Prior to joining NUHS in February 2020, she worked for the Ontario Public Service for over 30 years in a variety of different ministries, in a number of senior roles. In October 2011, Abby was the Director of the Retirement Home Project with a mandate to bring the Retirement Homes Legislation fully into force and support the development of the governance and accountability structure to oversee the Retirements Homes Regulatory Authority. Abby then became the Director for the Ministry for Seniors and Accessibility (MSAA), a newly created position in recognition of the increased program and policy responsibilities related to the provincial response to the rapidly changing demographics. In January 2016, she took on the role of Interim Assistant Deputy Minister of MSAA and in September 2016 was appointed permanently as Assistant Deputy Minister of MSAA. Abby has an extensive background in seniors’ issues, beginning her career as a social worker with a gerontology focus working in both institutional as well as community settings. Abby brings her vast experience in organizational leadership, regulatory policy, corporate governance, policy development as well as strategic and corporate planning and reporting.  

Unionville Home Society (Union Villa)

Lyndsey McIntyre - Chair
Lyndsey McIntyre Lyndsey joined the Board of Directors at Unionville Home Society (UHS) in 2013, and was appointed Chair in June 2019. In addition, Lyndsay also serves on the Audit Committee.  Her connection to UHS goes back over 30 years to when her grandmother was a resident at Unionvilla. Lyndsey holds an Honours degree in Business Administration from Wilfrid Laurier University and is a Chartered Professional Accountant. She is a partner in Grant Thornton’s Charity a Not-for-Profit practice group in Southern Ontario. She oversees the delivery of audit, tax and advisory services to clients in the not-for-profit sector. Lyndsey has worked with charities and not-for-profit organizations for over 15 years.
Julie Chapman - Vice Chair

Julie Chapman

As Vice President and Head of Legal at LexisNexis, Julie leads a team of 10 lawyers across Canada and the U.S. supporting all of LexisNexis’ North American business units.  She is passionate about advancing the rule of law globally, as well as promoting the upward mobility of women in the profession.  Julie is actively involved in the International Bar Association (IBA) and Canadian Bar Association (CBA) and sits as Governance Committee Chair for a seniors care non-profit board. Julie has also achieved the Certified In-House Counsel designation (CIC.C) from the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association (CBA).

 

 

Ted Madden - Treasurer

Ted Madden

Ted Madden originally served on the UHS Board between1993 to 2001 and was recently appointed to the New Unionville Home Society and Unionville Home Society Foundation boards in 2012.

Graduate of York University in 1973 with a Honours Business Administration, Ted began his career with 13 years at IBM Canada, focusing on small and medium sized Canadian companies primarily in the IT industry.

Initially concentrating in sales management, Ted moved to general management and had the unique opportunity to lead several companies as President/CEO including Bull HN Information Systems, Pitney Bowes Canada, Interactive Media Corporation (now Lavalife) and Momentum.com.

In 2001, Ted launched his own company, TM and Associates, working and investing in start-up Canadian businesses. The most successful of these businesses was IntelliResponse, a Waterloo start-up that we eventually sold to a US based company.  Ted was elected chair of York Technology Association (now Techconnex) from 2005 through 2007. In 2012, Ted purchased and operated the first Nurse Next Door franchise in York Region, merging it with another franchise in 2015.

Ted is now “mostly” retired, enjoying other aspects of life with his wife Shirley.

Audrey Jamieson

Audrey Jamieson

Audrey Jamieson joined the UHS Foundation Board in June of 2017.  Her brother Rob van Velzen was an active board member for over 6 years before his passing in 2011.  Audrey is currently the Vice Chair.

Audrey has a Political Science BA from Western University. She is the founder and president of Marketing Kitchen Inc. a leading Canadian marketing production company that specializes in helping businesses acquire and retain clients or donors.

One of her great achievements is winning The Markham Board of Trade Entrepreneurship Award in 2017.

Christine Joe

Christine Joe joined the Unionville Home Society Board in 2018.   She brings extensive health care administration, strategic planning, and project management expertise to the Board.

Christine has worked in a wide variety of healthcare environments including teaching, community and multi-site hospitals, regional health planning agencies and a community clinic.  Christine holds of Master Health Science, specializing in Health Administration from the University of Toronto.  In addition to being a Board Member, Christine is also an active UHS volunteer.

Michelle Tidball
Michelle Tidball

Michelle Tidball joined the New Unionville Home Society Board in 2019.  Michelle has been a supporter of Union Villa for many years. Her mother became a resident In 2014 and Michelle worked closely with staff on her care until her passing in 2017.  She is very grateful for all of the kindness and care shown to her mother.

She is an excellent communicator with strong advocacy skills. She has a great deal of experience in community building.

A resident of Unionville for nearly twenty years she has volunteered in a variety of community building projects, working closely with Municipal and Provincial government bodies.

As a member and later Chair of the Markham Public Library Board she participated in building three branches.  This included various aspects of the builds from consultation with stakeholders, design consultation and following through during construction.

Previously she was a member and then Chair of the East Gwillimbury Library Board where she participated in the building of the new Mount Albert branch. She also trained and later participated in the writing and implementation of a new governance model for the Markham Public Library.  She has a strong understanding and respect for the importance of strong governance leading strong organizations.

Her experiences as a family caregiver gives her a deep understanding of the complexities of dealing with government agencies, hospitals and long term care facilities from the family’s point of view.

Syrah Yusuf

Syrah Yusuf joined the Board of Directors at NUHS in 2019.

She is a practicing lawyer and is the co-owner/co-managing partner of Erudite Law LLP, a small full-service law firm in Richmond Hill, Ontario. Syrah holds both a Canadian and American J.D. from the Universities of Windsor and Detroit Mercy, respectively. She received her B.Sc. from the University of Toronto. Her primary practice areas are business law, estate planning/administration and civil litigation. Syrah frequently presents seminars for the community on legal topics, through the Town of Richmond Hill, and the Markham Public Library.

Syrah was born and raised in Unionville. Her passion for senior care came from her experience caring for her grandmother until her passing in 2004, after which she began volunteering at the Unionville Home Society as a student volunteer, visiting with residents.

Syrah is excited to be back at the Unionville Home Society, many years, and many experiences, later.

 

Abby Katz Starr - Secretary
Abby Katz Starr Abby Katz Starr is the CEO of New Unionville Home Society (NUHS) and its affiliate corporations.  Prior to joining NUHS in February 2020, she worked for the Ontario Public Service for over 30 years in a variety of different ministries, in a number of senior roles. In October 2011, Abby was the Director of the Retirement Home Project with a mandate to bring the Retirement Homes Legislation fully into force and support the development of the governance and accountability structure to oversee the Retirements Homes Regulatory Authority. Abby then became the Director for the Ministry for Seniors and Accessibility (MSAA), a newly created position in recognition of the increased program and policy responsibilities related to the provincial response to the rapidly changing demographics. In January 2016, she took on the role of Interim Assistant Deputy Minister of MSAA and in September 2016 was appointed permanently as Assistant Deputy Minister of MSAA. Abby has an extensive background in seniors’ issues, beginning her career as a social worker with a gerontology focus working in both institutional as well as community settings. Abby brings her vast experience in organizational leadership, regulatory policy, corporate governance, policy development as well as strategic and corporate planning and reporting.