Board Of Directors
Our Board of Directors is responsible for the overall policies of Coastal Community Credit Union. It is also charged with setting the Credit Union's overall vision, purpose, objectives and strategic plan. In addition to attending monthly board meetings, our directors also serve on many committees, including Investment and Lending, Audit, and Community Involvement.
Please note: In June of 2013, Coastal Community's Board of Directors passed a resolution to set the number of Directors at 11 rather than 12 (as per the Credit Union Rule 7.1 - "Number of Directors"). Due to this approved motion, the 2014 and 2015 Directors Elections will each seek to fill four positions. For the 2016 Directors Election, and every three years following, there will be three Director positions to fill.
2013-2014 Board of Directors
Mary Ashley has been a Director for Coastal Community Credit Union since 2006, and a credit union member for over 40 years. “From my grandparents to my grandchildren, our family has valued our memberships in the credit union movement,” says Mary. “As a Director, I feel strongly about contributing to Coastal Community Credit Union’s direction, and supporting the community through member and staff involvement in many great projects.”
Mary has enjoyed a varied career—as a past Mayor, Councillor, (and now Freeman) of the City of Campbell River, labour market analyst, career counselor, community issues consultant, store owner, and freelance actor for the CBC Vancouver.
She also commits her time to many volunteer initiatives for Campbell River and Vancouver Island. Currently, she acts as Chair for the Campbell River Cruise Ship Committee and is a Co-Chair on the Board of the Island Corridor Foundation. Mary has also lent her efforts to the 25th Anniversary of Twinning with Ishikari (Campbell River’s Sister City) project and was a past Director of the Campbell River Community Foundation.
Evelyn Clark, Vice Chair
A credit union member her entire life, Evelyn Clark supports the co-operative principles that guide and define the credit union structure. As Evelyn says, “I am motivated to be a Coastal Community Credit Union Director because it allows me to live out my co-operative, collaborative principles and to assist in keeping rural communities strong by having a dedicated, democratic financial institution in small towns throughout Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands.”
Evelyn began her Director tenure in 1990, and since then has served on a variety of committees. She credits both her work in economic development and her graduate school experiences with informing her efforts on the Credit Union Board.
Evelyn and her spouse recently located from Sointula to the Comox Valley, where she holds the position of Senior Project Manager for the Rural Economic Diversification Initiative for Community Futures British Columbia. She has strong ties to Sointula, and for years volunteered by editing the town’s Sisu Newsletter, founding and organizing the annual Sointula Bad Poetry Contest, and co-founding the Sointula Stage Hogs. She is also a participant of the Canadian Volunteer Initiative.
Evelyn was recently granted with Community Economic Development Co-ordinator certification. She also holds a Master of Arts in Leadership and Training from Royal Roads University.
Lynne Fraser has been working within the credit union system since 1970. In 2006, she retired from her position as Coastal Community’s Senior Vice-President of Finance, and became a Board member in 2009. “I have been associated with credit unions my whole life, and I respect and support the co-operative values we exemplify,” remarks Lynne.
An active volunteer, Lynne’s community efforts were honoured in 1995 when she was recognized as Nanaimo’s Community Leader of the Year. She has served as Commissioner for the City of Nanaimo and as committee member for the Cultural, Social Planning, and Grants Review committees. During her career at Coastal Community, Lynne developed and led the successful Community Involvement program.
Lynne is also a Director for the Nanaimo Addiction Foundation and the Vancouver chapter of Financial Executives International. In addition, she's also a member of the Cultural Committee for the City of Nanaimo.
“I am delighted to be a part of the positive difference that Coastal Community Credit Union can and will make for its members, communities, and employees,” says Lynne.
A semi-retired academic, Dr. Laurie Jackson is keen on transferring her ample knowledge and experience in areas such as public policy, governance and business management to her Board duties. Laurie has held several professor appointments for universities both on the Island and in New Zealand and is a former Director of Communications for the Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations. She also holds a PhD in Geography , an M.Ed. in Administration, and is accredited through the Canadian Public Relations Society.
A passion for corporate social responsibility motivated Laurie to pursue directorship. “I see Coastal Community as a leader in ethical and responsible business which works with and serves its communities,” she says. A commitment to business and environmental sustainability, including triple bottom line reporting, further fuels her efforts.
Laurie owns a bit of paradise on Gabriola and has lent her support to various initiatives on the island such as Streamkeepers Gabriola, the Gabriola Island Recycling Organization, and the Gabriola Museum Society.
Susanne Jakobsen, Board Chair
Born and raised in Nanaimo, Susanne Jakobsen has been a Coastal Community member for more than 30 years and a member of Nanaimo’s business community for 22 years. Currently, Susanne is the business manager of a national retail company. As an active learner, she is also enrolled in labour law and business-focused courses, and is a graduate of the Credit Union Director Achievement program.
Susanne has been a Director for Coastal Community since 2001, and has served on all committees in Chair, Vice-Chair, and Board member capacities. She currently serves as Board Chair and ex-officio on all committees. “It is exciting to serve on the Board for Coastal Community Credit Union,” says Susanne. “I’m not only proud of our past accomplishments, but also our future direction. The Credit Union’s commitment to becoming one of Canada’s 50 Best Employers, while maintaining its stance as top financial solutions provider and community leader, motivates me to put forth my best efforts as a Director.”
In her spare time, Susanne extends her community involvement to the SPCA, the Canadian Cancer Society, and Crime Stoppers. Susanne and her husband have been married for 24 years and have a son. Her love of boating led Susanne to become treasurer of the Moonshine Cove Yacht Club. She also enjoys reading and spending time with her family.
Richard Kerton began his credit union directorship in 2002. He was a Chair of the former Comox Valley Credit Union Board, and served on the Joint Steering committee for the tri-merger between Coastal Community, Evergreen Savings, and Comox Valley Credit Unions. Richard is also a Chair for Central One’s Peer Group 4.
As General Manager of the Comox District Consumer’s Co-operative, Richard carries strong support for the co-operative values of open membership and democratic leadership. “I have always been passionate about the co-operative and credit union movements and their achievements,” states Richard. “As a Director, I aspire to make active and positive contributions to the Credit Union’s success.”
Richard is a Credit Union Director Achievement graduate and has studied in the Certified General Accountant program. Richard’s educational and managerial experiences have made him familiar with budgets, audit processes, and business planning. Community-focused, Richard also commits his time to the Courtenay Recreation Association, the Courtenay Little Theatre Society, and the North Island Zone Drama group.
A Coastal Community member for the past 20 years, Terry Law has a keen interest in promoting the island region, thanks in part to his extensive travel industry experience and the 37 years spent as a local business man.
Terry has owned both Pathfinder Travel and Associated Travel, and was involved with the Comox Valley Airport Commission for 12 years, where he acquired a vast knowledge of corporate governance.
Along with his Board duties, Terry now works in his original field of education, the culinary arts. He enjoys being the weekend, holiday and relief cook with Nova Pacific Care in both Qualicum Beach and Comox. He has also lent his efforts to the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce, Tourism Comox Valley, the Beaufort Association for the Mentally Handicapped, and as a Foster Parent.
Says Terry, "I have always thought of our local Credit Union as the grass roots of our community, a real cornerstone. So to be part of the process is a real honour for me.”
John Newall has been a Board member since 1996, and a Credit Union member for more than 40 years. “As a parent, and now a grandparent, I want to help ensure that Coastal Community Credit Union continues as a strong and relevant part of the community for the next generation,” says John.
A self-employed cabinet maker for the past three decades, John brings to the Board valuable small business experience. Says John, “Being a small business owner, I understand the financial challenges they are faced with, and I want to support the important part that they play in our local economy through continued improvement in our business services.”John has served as Coastal Community’s Board Chair in previous tenures and has sat on all of its committees.
For the past 25 years, John has been a member of the Nanoose Volunteer Fire Department, and has been serving as its Deputy Chief for 20 years. He and his wife enjoy spending time with their three grandchildren. They are also busy with their small hobby farm, where they raise free-range chickens and turkeys. John also enjoys scuba diving, kayaking, and fishing.
Gail Preus has been involved in the financial services industry for over 35 years, and has spent 15 of them within the credit union system. Says Gail, “I was brought up on the co-op system, as my parents were members of our local Co-op.” In 2002, she became a Director of the former Comox Valley Credit Union, and continues to serve on Coastal Community’s Board. “I have always believed that people helping people makes our world a better place,” continues Gail. “Being involved in the Credit Union, as an employee and now as a Director, I hope to inform the management team on what members think and need, and do my best to help them in all of their financial decisions.”
As a community-minded person, Gail enjoys involving herself in various causes. She volunteers for Santa’s Workshop, visits seniors with the St. John’s Ambulance therapy dog, and is a proud supporter of the SPCA. She also acts in various capacities for her church and sponsors children through World Vision.
Gail is a graduate of the Credit Union Director Achievement training program. In her spare time, she enjoys tending to her garden and craft-making.
As a member of Coastal Community Credit Union for over 40 years, and as an employee for 38 of those years, Lorne Purchase brings a range of professional and operational experience to the Board. While working at Coastal Community, Lorne played an instrumental role in mergers with former Parksville, Chemainus, Comox Valley, and Evergreen Credit Unions. Says Lorne, “As a long term employee involved in the many mergers that got us to where we are today, I wanted to play a part in ensuring that the best interests of the members, employees, and community were well represented at the Board table and in the strategic direction for the future; I am confident that these objectives are being accomplished.”
Lorne retired from his position as Coastal Community’s Senior Vice President of Operations in 2005. Since becoming a Director in 2007, he has served on numerous board committees. Lorne also holds various degrees and certificates for courses taken relating to Credit Union Management and Business Administration.
Active in his community, Lorne has served on various volunteer boards including Nanaimo Family Life and the Malaspina College Foundation Board, as well as serving as President of the Rotary Club in Lantzville. He is also a lifetime member of the Lantzville Volunteer Fire Department, where he served as Deputy Chief for a number of years. Lorne enjoys golfing, gardening, and traveling with his wife. He can also be seen riding up and down the Island on his Harley Davidson.
Cheryl Tellier’s involvement with Coastal Community Credit Union began as a child when she opened an account through the Credit Union’s school savings program; she has been a dedicated member ever since. “As Coastal Community has helped me with financially-sound advice throughout my life, I’m happy to use my organizational and leadership experience to give back to our Credit Union, members, and communities through my work as a Director,”
Cheryl has been a Director since 2005, and feels a sense of honour to be a part of a progressive Board and Credit Union. In 2006, she successfully graduated from the Credit Union Director Achievement program.
Cheryl brings with her substantial experience in the customer service and telecommunications industries, having been an employee of BC Tel and Telus for 32 years. Since 2002, she has worked on contract for a variety of organizations on the island, helping them to organize and facilitate their work programs.
In addition to her Director duties, Cheryl also finds the time to be involved in other organizations such as: Employment Insurance Board of Referees; Extension Volunteer Fire Department; BC Transit; BC Unity Panel; Blade Runners Youth Program Advisory Board; Nanaimo Regional District Area C Advisory Planning Committee; Extension Recreation Commission; and the Beban Park Commission. Cheryl also holds memberships with the Port Theatre, Nanaimo Affordable Housing, and the Nanaimo Quilt Guild.