AHS board members are elected annually at the Annual General Meeting, and they assume fiduciary and philosophical responsibility for the charitable entity legally registered as the Abbotsford Hospice Society.
Our Board members mirror the diversity of our incredible community.
Society Board Members
Ryan is a partner with MNP, working with the firm's assurance services group to provide a full suite of audit, assurance and accounting services to help owner-managed businesses. Ryan grew up on southern Alberta and the interior of BC, but he and his family have put down roots in Abbotsford.
"I was drawn to the Society due to the great service that it provides to our community. For some time, I have heard friends and colleagues talk about its great positive impact in Abbotsford. Through several visits, I have been given the honour of seeing how it can bless the lives of those who are receiving support that AHS can provide. I want to do what I can to see these services continued and expanded, especially as it relates to family members and younger children who are impacted by the loss of a loved one."
Fran Vanderpol is an active member of our community and currently serves on the UFV Board of Governors and the Board for Abbotsford Restorative Justice and Advocacy Association. She ran their family business, Vanderpol's Eggs Ltd until handing it over to her children. Since then she has continued to stay active, hleping found Character Abbotsfrod and the Peace and Reconiliation Centre that is a UFV/Community partnership.
"In our extended family we have dealt with death way too often, too many of them being young people. Each one leaves such deep wounds and scars. Thankfully it has brought us closer as we learn to express our vulnerability and grieve together. Learning to deal with dying makes our living so much richer."
Harsimran is a CPA working at MNP in Abbotsford. He works in assurance services group, providing clients with support and advice to help their businesses succeed. Born in India, Harsimran immigrated to Canada in 2001 with his family and has been living in Abbotsford since. Harsimran graduated from the University of the Fraser Valley with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree.
"I believe that serving the community is a great way to give back for all the opportunities I have received growing up in Abbotsford. Being on the Abbotsford Hospice Society Board is a great opportunity for me to help bring awareness to these support services in our community. The work the society does is crucial and much needed in our community. I hope that I can help the society continue to provide the crucial services in our community.”
Jeevin Phagura: Commercial Banker, Scotiabank
Jeevin is a Senior Relationship Manager with Scotiabank and their local Commercial Banking group, providing financing, deposit, and cash management based solutions and services for local businesses. Jeevin was born and raised in Abbotsford, having graduated from high school and university locally.
“I was interested in joining the Society as the services being provided are highly impactful on patients and their families. Professional care in a supportive system ensures the patient and their family can take steps together during a time most people will always remember. The Society is well known to provide this along with a meaningful grief and loss support system for families. I would like to do my best to ensure these services are supported to continue benefiting our local community.”
Kam is a lawyer with Rosborough and Co. and provides services in corporate/commercial law, wills, trusts and estate law and real estate law. Kam recognizes the value of hospice having a family member who passed away in hospice care. He believes there are pockets of the community that could be served with more knowledge about the programs and services offered by hospice and hopes to increase awareness of same. Kam served 6 years as a director with the Surrey Hospice Society and will use that experience to support the growth and stability of the Abbotsford Hospice Society.
Randy is the President at Aprario Investments, he has passive and active roles in their investments in food manufacturing, distribution, hospitality, and consumer goods. He previously served as treasurer for the Abbotsford Downtown Business Association and as a Director and Chair of Mission Possible, a Vancouver based social enterprise. Randy grew up in and lives in Abbotsford with his wife and their four children.
“Having lost a parent as a child, I understand the realities of grief and the importance of support. The Society’s volunteers, staff, and programs provide a significant value to our community through their support, education, and advocacy. I am grateful for the opportunity to be able to support the Society’s growth, program accessibility, and awareness.”
In addition to being a Senior Business Development Specialist at Raymond James, past president Bharathi is actively involved in the community. While still serving as a board member to FVICBA, she sits on the board of the Fraser River Community Crematorium Society. Bharathi also served on the Dasmesh Punjabi School board from 2008-2017 and is currently the chair of the South Asian Studies Institute of UFV’s Community Advisory Committee.
"Abbotsford Hospice Society represents compassion and dignity, two important things for any human being at a highly sensitive time. The all-encompassing care for not only the ailing but also their family members, and the continued support of family members who are grieving, is personal to me and very important in the lives of everyone involved."
Katie Syroid has been volunteering in the community for the past 25 years. Most recently Katie has worked in the non-profit sector for over 10 years for various organizations including, the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation and the Alzheimer Society of B.C. Katie received her Non-Profit Management Certificate from Simon Fraser University. Now a business owner in Abbotsford, Katie is pleased to volunteer for the Abbotsford Hospice Society and looks forward to serving the organization that supported her and her family during her father’s illness and passing.
"Volunteering with the Abbotsford Hospice Society is important to me because of the wonderful work that they do for the community. From their wonderful volunteers to the amazing programs that are offered to those grieving in the community, it is such a vital service and I want to do my part to see that service continue."
"Even though I help people for an unexpected death financially, of course money never heals a heart. The outreach and support provided through the programs available and offered through Hospice are essential to help people navigate grief, keeping the people of Abbotsford and our community healthy."
"I strongly believe in the need and value of the community service programs specialized in helping those facing death in the near term and the families grieving the loss of their loved ones. These people are going through one of the most difficult times of their life. High quality professional care, counselling and companionship offered through palliative and bereavement care programs can make a huge difference in helping the dying end their life peacefully as well as
healing the heart of the bereaved. I was drawn to AHS because from what I’ve heard from my colleagues and friends, I believe AHS does exactly that and I thought it’d be a great honour to be part of the Board.
I am a Chartered Professional Accountant, currently the owner-manager of Jay Kang CPA Ltd., located in Mission. In addition to the full suite of accounting, assurance and tax services we provide as a CPA firm, we enjoy and focus on helping small businesses and their owners keep on track with their accounting and tax matters so they can focus on what matters to them most."
Mindi is an Airport Duty Officer at the Abbotsford International Airport with over 11 years of experience in the aviation industry. In 2020, he was recognized as one of the Top 20 Under 40 by WINGS Magazine for influencing the future of Canadian Aviation. He currently serves as a board of director on the Abbotsford Youth Commission, Mission Community Services Society and the Abbotsford Reach Gallery.
Born and raised in Abbotsford, Mindi and his wife are proud to call Abby their home and raise their two young children here. Becoming a parent has been his biggest blessing and his children are the number one reason why he wants to continue to give back to his community in hopes it will continue to provide better opportunities for their generation and beyond. Mindi recognizes the value of hospice care as he has had personal experience with having a family member pass away in specialized long-term care.
Eden graduated with a doctor of Medicine from Orotta School of Medicine and has worked as a General Practitioner in Barentu Regional Hospital. Eden has volunteer experience in Elshadai Clinic and other government organization such has Fistual Victims.
"I consider it a privilege volunteering at Abbotsford Hospice Society a valuable resource to my community. The support provided to those who are walking through grief are given hope and strength for a better tomorrow."
Foundation Board Members
Jon has over 30 years of business, financial and investment management experience, ranging from private business to Portfolio Management with two of Canada’s largest bank wealth management divisions. He is now a principal with Anchor Pacific Investment Management. He spent several years of his earlier career working with international companies and pension managers designing and implementing various investment and hedging strategies.
Jon lives in the North Bradner community in Abbotsford with Susan, his wife of 27 years. They have three children, Kate, Alex, and Sara. Jon and Susan enjoy their hobby farm and share it with horses, chickens, cats, two dogs, and a pair of donkeys named Gus & Elliot.
As a Senior Portfolio Manager, Wealth Advisor, and Financial Planner with RBC Dominion Securities, Cameron provides access to a comprehensive range of services. A Fellow of the Canadian Securities Institute (FCSI), Cameron has a university background in Mathematics from UFV. A firm believer in ongoing education, he has acquired the advanced industry designations of Chartered Investment Manager (CIM), Professional Financial Planning (PFP), Certified International Wealth Manager (CIWM), and most recently DMS (Derivative Market Specialist). In his spare time, he enjoys golfing, hiking, and traveling. Cameron and his wife, Laura, have one beautiful son Bennett.
Matt grew up in Vancouver before settling in the lower mainland where he went on to obtain his Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Fraser Valley. He currently works as a financial controller for a small landscape construction company. Matt joined the board as he believes Hospice provides an invaluable service to families within the local community.
Miriam enjoys being a community leader as the Executive Director of the Mission Downtown Business Association. She brings a passion for small local business and extensive experience in administration, event planning, marketing, and networking to her role. Miriam has always believed strongly in giving back through community service and currently serves as the Vice President of Wonder Women Society, volunteers with Hope Central serving meals, and is involved with several other community service groups. She has personally experienced the incredible impact of the support services Abbotsford Hospice Society offers and is very pleased to join the AHS Board of Directors to help ensure that these valuable services continue for many years to come.
Gurjit has been in the Insurance market since 1995 in England where he worked with an Insurance Company. He moved into Commercial Broking after 14 months and has remained in that ever since. He and his family moved to Vancouver in May 2014 and joined Marsh Vancouver.
· He has worked for some of the large National Brokers over the years and large Provincial Brokers in the UK and has wide range of experience in dealing with personal lines along with speciality covers and claims with composite insurers and Lloyds of London. He started with our Foundation Board in 2015.
Satti Grewal is a skilled entrepreneur and a strong community leader with a commitment to giving back. Since 2006, Satti has been the owner and operator of Swing Optical, winner of the Best Optical Store in Mission for 18 years in a row. During this time, he expanded operations to include Vision 202/20 Eyecare in Chilliwack. Satti is currently President of the Mission Mid-day Rotary Club, he is the co-founder and chair of the Mission Multicultural Business Association and President of the Mission Short Film Festival.
Mike McWhinney spent his early years and schooling in Abbotsford. After university, he pursued his management career with the federal public service, serving across Canada with the Department of National Defence, Employment and Immigration, National Revenue, and the Canada Border Services Agency. As a result, Mike has 38+ years of rich and diverse experience in operations and HR management, with more than 20 of these years in senior executive positions.
Mr. McWhinney is a graduate of SFU and the National Defence College of Canada and has been an organizer and alumnus with the Governor General’s Canadian Leadership Conferences. Mike’s other volunteer service includes Workforce Team Leader, Hockey for the 2010 Winter Olympics; Abbotsford Police Board for 6 years; Abbotsford Hospice Society Board member; and backstage crew with Fraser Valley Stage over the past 20 years. Mike and his wife Kathleen and family have resided in Abbotsford since 1997.