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Board of Directors


Mike ReillyMike Reilly |  President.  Mike was raised in Kitchener-Waterloo, and graduated from the University of Victoria with a degree in biology. He worked for several years as a habitat consultant for forest companies in the BC Interior but gradually shifted to more IT management as the industry changed. After working as a project manager with a division of Hewlett-Packard, Mike changed careers to become a financial advisor with Freedom 55 Financial. Mike is excited to help his clients achieve peace of mind for themselves and their family’s future. Mike and his wife Karen are busy with six kids, three boys and three girls, ranging from middle school to post graduate students. His non working hours are spent at hockey practice, dance recitals, animal husbandry activities, parent teacher interviews and other domestic engineering tasks

 


 Ingrid Vaughan| First Vice President.   Ingrid owns and operates Smart HR, a consulting service geared towards helping business owners create and sustain strong HR processes and practices in their companies. Ingrid is a former manager of the WestShore Chamber of Commerce, and has extensive experience in helping Chamber members grow their businesses.   She previously served as President of the board of South Island Centre for Counselling and Training, and on the boards of Worklink and the CoolAid Society.

 

 

 

 

Kelly Darwin | Second Vice President. Kelly is the owner of Seriously Creative, an award winning web design & marketing agency. Kelly grew up in Langford, raised his family and continues to reside and operate Seriously Creative in the Westshore.

An avid networker Kelly is also Director Consultant with Business Networking International, a referral networking advisor and business and marketing development consultant.

 

 

 

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Todd Troyer | Treasurer. Todd is a principal at Collins Barrow Victoria Ltd. and leads the practice at the Westshore office. He obtained his CGA designation in 1997, and his CA designation in 2000. Todd practices in auditing, accounting, and taxation services in both the public and private sectors.

Todd is an avid curler and has played competitively for many years. He is a former Canadian Junior Curling Champion having won the title in 1988 and was silver medalist at the 1989 World Junior Curling Championships. Todd has volunteered as a coach for youth curlers for many years and from 2009 to 2015 coached teams to B.C. Provincial Curling Championships. The 2012, 2013, and 2015 teams won the provincial title and represented B.C. at the Canadian Junior Championships.  Todd is born and raised in Victoria and has lived in Colwood for 10 years with his wife Teresa and daughter Robyn.

 


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Chris Burdge | Director. Chris is the owner of bWEST Interactive, an award winning online marketing firm based in Langford.  Chris is also the founder and CEO of SOHO Victoria, an annual conference designed to help small and home office business owners succeed by empowering them to manage and grow their business, through workshops, 1-1 Expert Advice and networking. In 2009 Chris co-founded Social Media Camp, Canada’s largest social media conference, coming up to its 10th anniversary here in Victoria. Chris is an avid supporter of the West Shore community and JDF Minor Hockey. When not working he can be found playing hockey, cycling or paddle boarding with his kids.

 

 

 

 

Paula Blazina | Director.  Paula Blazina has 18+ years banking experience with Coastal Community Credit Union and is currently Branch Manager of the new Eagle Creek Village Branch.  Paula has been a Westshore Chamber member representing Coastal Community Credit Union for nearly three 3 years. Coastal Community Credit Union is Vancouver Island’s largest island based Credit Union, employing nearly 600 people tip to tip – coast to coast with 24 retail branches, 16 insurance offices as well as Business/ Commercial services and Wealth and Personal Insurance.

 

 

 

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Henry Chipps | Director.  Henry is a member of the Sc’ianew First Nation and one of the treaty negotiators, and is part of a team discussing a new modern day treaty with the federal and provincial governments. Henry is also involved in First Nations education and works with Aboriginal Education at School District # 62.  It is also here where Henry works with another team, here he works with the youth. Henry has been a director with the WestShore Chamber of Commerce since 2014.

 

 

 

 

Michele Hansen | Director. michele-cropped Michele has over 25 years of business experience as a successful entrepreneur running an award-winning custom fabrication company in Victoria.  In her current role at AOS Partners, Michele manages client relationships and projects, implementation of new systems and processes, and training client teams.  In her free time, Michele and her husband Dan love to enjoy nature with their dog Max, walking through forest or beaches and camping throughout BC.  The WestShore business community is near to Michele’s heart.

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Sharon Mitchell | Director. Sharon specializes in working with women who are facing a major life transition such as widowhood, divorce, downsizing or retirement.  These are significant events that come with challenges and personal costs. Learning to embrace these life transitions can present opportunities for growth, allowing women to control their finances.

Sharon has worked in the financial industry since 1993 and joined the Dividend Value Partners team of Raymond James in 2014. She holds two bachelor degrees: a Bachelor of Commerce (Finance) from the University of Calgary and a Bachelor of Science from the University of Alberta (Zoology and Psychology). In addition, she completed her Financial Management Advisor (FMA) designation in 2007, her insurance licensing in 2014, and now holds her Certified Financial Planner designation. She enjoys analyzing her clients’ entire financial situation including investment management, and advising on areas for potential improvement.

Originally from Vancouver, BC, Sharon currently resides in Victoria.  She enjoys spending time with her family. When she is not working with clients, Sharon enjoys boating in the Gulf Islands, hiking the local trails, travelling wherever planes fly, and gardening what the deer leave behind.

 

Cody Rowe | Director.  Cody grew up in Surrey, BC where at 18, he took his first shot at being an entrepreneur by starting a clothing business. After 5 years of operation, he used the profit from that business to purchase a family home and discovered his passion for learning about real estate. After gaining experience in the financial industry by working in banks and insurance companies, Cody decided to execute his plan of starting a mortgage brokerage, on beautiful Vancouver Island. Since moving to Victoria last year, he has made strong efforts to contribute and offer his time to the business community and non-profits he believes in within Victoria. In his spare time, Cody is an avid student of martial arts, enjoys playing sports, rock climbing, cooking dinner with friends and sitting back with a book.

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Bruce Simpson | Director. Bruce is the Branch Manager of Hatley Memorial Gardens Cemetery & Cremation Centre in Colwood. He moved to the Westshore 6 years ago from Calgary where he held a number of positions including being a Television News Reporter & Anchor for the CTV affiliate CFCN to being a Senior Fundraising Coordinator with the Canadian Cancer Society.  He has previous experience as the Manager of Medicine Hat’s Downtown Business Revitalization Zone, and as a National Coordinator with an environmental group “Kids for Saving Earth”.  Family is very important to Bruce.  He and his wife Debra have a blended family with 4 adult children.  They also provided primary parental care for their granddaughter for over 10 years.  He loves his work saying he is able to drive home and the end of each day with the satisfaction of having helped somebody through a difficult time.  As he says, “He’ll be the last person to ever let you down”.

 

 

 

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