Susanna Kislenko, Executive Director, Development
With over ten years of experience in the non-profit sector, Susanna's work is centred on strategic brand and program development, marketing and partnership building. Previously holding roles at World Education Services, The J.W. McConnell Family Foundation and Roots of Empathy, Susanna's efforts have been focused on leveraging the potential for systemic change that exists in uniting the voluntary, private and public spheres. Susanna holds a Masters of International Relations from McGill University and an International Bachelor of Business Administration from the Schulich School of Business.
Contact: 416-934-1229 ext. 718
Paul Farrar, Operations Manager
Paul has been an executive and consultant within the logistics field for over 25 years. He was a member of the Toronto and Brampton Traffic Club and one of the first owners of a North American 3PL (Third Party Logistics company). Paul has been an active member of his community, and for the past sixteen years he volunteered his time and experience for non-profits such as: Alpha House, Salvation Army, Out of the Cold, Operation Springboard, Cabbagetown Youth Centre, For the Children, Transition House and the Oasis Employment Program. Instrumental in developing an employment program for people with barriers to employment, Paul has also held various advisory committee positions with HRDC. He has been able to incorporate his work and passion for photography to assist with fundraising events and has achievements from the American Image Press and the American International News Services for Press Photography.
Contact: 416-934-1229 ext. 705
Kam Grewal, Program Manager
Kam graduated with Honours from the University of Toronto specializing in Political Science and then went on to complete a second degree in Human Rights and Equity from York University. She has over ten years experience in the customer service industry and has held several management positions in that time. Before joining the Furniture Bank team, Kam was volunteering for an AIDS prevention non-profit organization in northern India whose mission was to educate women about personal well being and safety who worked in sex work in areas where there was heavy human trafficking, an experience that solidified her desire to pursue humanitarian work as a profession. Immediately after, Kam filled the opening of a Client Services and Volunteer Coordinator at Furniture Bank and within one year, worked her way up to Program Manager.
Contact: 416-934-1229 ext. 717
Ana Restrepo, Senior Manager, Finance and Analysis
Ana graduated with distinction in Accounting and wrote her thesis on “How to incorporate social values into the financial structure of an organization”. Ana completed a second degree in Law & Finance at University of Caldas (Colombia) with a focus in liability insurance and contract law, subsequently completed Project Evaluation at National University Colombia, and is currently working towards her Certified General Accounting (CGA), in addition to taking courses in business communication and management coaching.
She has held the position of Treasure of Bills (Bloor Information and Life Skills Centre) and as Coach of a management team at a non-profit organization in Colombia who supported children with down syndrome and autism. Finally, she has over 10 years experience in leading and managing a successful financial team in a manufacturing accounting in Colombia‘s Coffee industry as Assistant Financial Director, where she was responsible for business promotion in Colombia and other South American countries.
Contact: 416-934-1229 ext. 711
Furniture Bank is fortunate to enjoy the services of a dedicated group of Directors who provide stewardship and strategic direction to the organization. Each Director also serves on at least one of four established Board Committees: Finance, Development, Program, and Governance.
Board of Directors
Chair: Gerry Purcell, Managing Director, Value Improvement Associates
A seasoned executive and advisor, Gerry is a management consultant by profession having worked with organizations both large and small all over the world. He has been involved in the not-for-profit environment for a number of years with organizations such as the United Way, Boys and Girls Clubs, the Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario. He has acted in various capacities, including leadership roles with a number of organizations undergoing significant challenges in growth or transformation.
Secretary: Jennifer Hunter, Associate, Lerners LLP
Jennifer is a Partner at Lerners LLP. She completed her BA (hons) in political theory at University of Winnipeg and her J.D. at the University of Toronto. She has worked in the area of health law for seven years and has advised hospitals in legal, policy and governance matters. She continues to work in health law, municipal liability and professional liability, representing clients at administrative tribunals, mediation and before the courts. She is a member of the OBA Health Law Section and is Chair of the Board of Directors of Common Ground Co-op. She regularly volunteers her time with Pro Bono Law Ontario at projects such as Law Help Ontario and the Child Advocacy Project.
Treasurer: Bob Waterworth, Partner, R&D Tax Incentives Practice, KPMG
Bob is a Partner in KPMG’s R&D Tax Incentives practice and leads a team of over 25 full-time staff including engineers, scientists, accountants and tax professionals. Bob has been involved in the not-for-profit environment for a number of years with organizations such as the Canadian National Institute for the Blind and the United Way Financial Literacy Pilot Program as well as various fundraising campaigns for the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada, Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation - CIBC Run For The Cure, United Way - CN Tower Climb and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation - Ride for JDRF.
David is a Consultant who has owned and operated a home care business and has over 20 years experience practicing corporate and securities law with major law firms in Toronto. He has an engineering degree from Queens University and an LLB from Dalhousie University. He has taught advanced securities law classes at three leading law schools and has published and spoken regularly on securities law matters. He is an avid gourmet cook who enjoys downhill skiing, squash, tennis, golf, sailing, inline skating and reading.
For the last 13 years, Andrew has been involved with the United Way in a variety of capacities including impact analysis, strategic consulting and primarily, agency assessment. By day, Andrew is the VP of Products and Innovation at Veriday Inc., a digital marketing firm. This is Andrew’s fourth year on the board of Furniture Bank. In his capacity as the Chair of Development, he works in partnership with the Executive Director of Development on transformational strategies in fundraising, marketing and program development.
Norman is an Operations Manager for General Electric's Digital Energy Division. He is an industrious and knowledgeable Senior Manager with international experience in Europe, USA and Canada leading mutlit-disciplinary teams in a variety of industries including Automotive, Nuclear Power, Manufacturing, Construction, Food & Beverage and Oil & Gas. He holds an MBA from the Queen's School of Business, and Bachelors of Engineering from Queen's University.
Sue is a Community Development Officer for the City of Toronto's Newcomer Office, and has previously worked for a range of newcomer, housing and food-security focused organizations in the city. Sue is from Ireland, and moved from Dublin to Toronto in 2007. She holds an MSc in Planning from the University of Toronto, and a BA & MA in Urban Geography from the National University of Ireland.
Michael is a professional in the Operations Practice at TPG Capital, a top global private equity firm, where he leads strategic growth initiatives with the firm’s portfolio companies. Prior to joining TPG, Michael was a Management Consultant specializing in operations transformation and acquisitions. In addition to his board role at Furniture Bank, he chairs the Investment Committee at Social Venture Partners Toronto and serves on the board of For Youth Initiative (FYI). Michael is a graduate of Queen’s University and holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree.
Jennifer is currently an Operations Analyst for a Canadian financial services company. Throughout her career, she has gained experience across many areas, including process efficiency, change management, and corporate environmental policy best practices and sustainability with multi-national entities. Jennifer’s primary expertise to date has focused on environmental program design, implementation and management. Jennifer holds an M.B.A. specializing in strategy from the Rotman School of Business Management at the University of Toronto. She completed her B.E.S. at the University of Waterloo with a combined major of Environmental Studies and Business. She also holds a Diploma in Environmental Assessment.
Sister Anne Schenck (Founder)
As one of the original founders of Furniture Bank, Sister Anne continues as an active member of the Board. She remains a strong advocate for social justice and the need to restore human dignity for those on the margins of society. As an educator, Sister Anne served as a Secondary School Teacher and Principal from 1956 to1988. Prior to the founding of Furniture Bank in 1996-1998, she was the Executive Director of Herron Place Refugee Centre from 1989 to 1994.