Application to the Board of Directors of Community Futures Peace Liard
Potential Board Members may be identified/nominated by the existing Board of Directors, or where unsolicited any resident of the Peace Liard may make an application for Board Membership.
To assist potential members, this package includes further details of our work, along with a membership application form at the end of the document. We hope you will consider joining us.
If, after having read through this package, you have further questions or are interested in learning more about our organization, please feel free to contact the General Manager at 250-782-8748. Thank you for your interest.
Our Board and Volunteers
Russ Beerling, former business owner of Moose FM, Energetic City.ca, Big Ideas Marketing Company, and a small billboard company, and current partner in ESR Business Solutions Inc. has benefited his position with Community Futures.
He has been involved with Community Futures for several years now, sitting as a board member, a director, business advisory board and Past Chair. He also sat on the B.C. Community Futures Board of Directors.
Russ’ community involvement has been extensive, as his passions for business and tourism has been his driving force. He sits as the Vice-President of the Fort St. John and District Chamber of Commerce, having held the President’s position in Dawson Creek and Fort St. John. His role as Northern Vice-Chair for United Way has brought Russ even closer to community development.
With each role he has played in each community he has lived in, it has been exciting and a true pleasure to watch their markets grow and know that he has been able to contribute to that growth. Being a business owner has helped Russ to understand the challenges faced with business today. Giving input to the direction Community Futures who helps grow communities, has been important to ensuring that not only do we see growth in the Peace Liard region, but also throughout rural BC.
Naomi Larsen is currently the Executive Director for the Chetwynd Chamber of Commerce in Chetwynd, BC. She was born and raised in Wabigoon, Ontario (just outside of Dryden). She moved to BC in 1996 where she was employed as a reporter for the Chetwynd Echo. In 1997 she moved to Creston, BC where she worked as a reporter at the Creston Valley Advance. In 1998 she and her husband moved to the Elk Valley where she was employed at the Fernie Free Press as Jr. Editor until they relocated once again to Chetwynd. She took over the Editor’s position at the Chetwynd Echo and then the Publisher’s position in 2010. Following the closure of the Echo in 2015 by its Toronto owners she secured the position as Executive Director for the Chetwynd Chamber of Commerce in fall of 2016. She had been the secretary for the board since 2011.
She holds a diploma in journalism and also owns her own photography business on the side, however she says life experience has taught her much more than anything else could have. As Executive Director, she loves being able to help Chetwynd businesses be the best they can be and to be the community’s voice of business. She and her husband reside on the outskirts of Chetwynd and have two children, ages 10 and 22 and one furkid, Miss Mittens.
John Powell has been the Director of Economic Development and Tourism at the District of Tumbler Ridge since April 2016. Previous to this, he was Economic Development Officer for the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen since December 2010.
John has worked very closely with small business throughout the community of Tumbler Ridge as well as with the community’s metallurgical coal mining, forestry, wind energy and tourism sectors. In addition, John’s role has included the rebranding of the community and Tumbler Ridge UNESCO Global geopark, the development of an on-line commercial and industrial land sale database and launching the planning and development of Tumbler Ridge’s first rural residential lot development as well as other commercial and residential subdivisions. Furthermore, he has developed and implemented a signage and wayfinding strategy for Tumbler Ridge and the Tumbler Ridge UNESCO Global Geopark.
John is also proud to be a director on the Boards of the BC Economic Development Association and Tumbler Ridge’s preschool and daycare, as well as Chair of Tumbler Ridge’s Tourism Advisory Committee. In addition, John has recently co-launched a Teen Support Network that seeks to support teenagers in the community. Current projects include career and university exploratory events and preparing teens for the financial, health and life style challenges of leaving home.
John lives in Tumbler Ridge with his wife, Melinda, two sons Zachary and Ryan and dog, Callie. He can often be found hiking or snow shoeing with his family on local trails, camping and growing food in his backyard. He is also a passionate traveller with a lengthy and ever-growing bucket list.
Carol retired as a Small Business Account Manager from RBC. She lives in the Dawson Creek area and is actively involved in the Dawson Creek Golf and Country Club, Dawson Creek Curling Club, and frequently can be found at the Kenn Borek Aquatic Centre.
Lori Archibald is the Chief Executive Officer at the Lakeview Credit Union in Dawson Creek. She has a solid foundation of business expertise with specialty in finance, human resources and risk mitigation strategies.
Born and raised in Dawson Creek, Jannah is a proud member of Saulteau First Nation, Gauthier family. The granddaughter of Ted and Marie Kohlman, the original owners of Ted’s Service in Arras, she grew up with an entrepreneurial spirit and strong work ethic. Jannah has worked in bookkeeping, administration and financial management and gained experience in many fields including real estate investment, property management, sales and marketing, hospitality, and finance.
She is the Executive Director of the Nawican Friendship Centre and through hard work and perseverance, the Centre has seen a significant increase in budget allocation and confidence from our provincial and national boards.
Dustin Bodnaryk is currently the General Manager for Spectra Venue Management at the Encana Events Centre a 4,500 seat mult-events centre and arena located in Dawson Creek, BC. Dustin also oversees the delivery of Tourism Dawson Creek the Destination Management Organization for the City of Dawson Creek.
Dustin’s background is in entertainment and destination marketing and guest experience. Dustin first arrived in Dawson Creek in 2007 to assume the role as Tourism Development Coordinator and manage the day to day operations of Tourism Dawson Creek, including visitor services, research, marketing, production development. Between 2012 – 2015, Dustin worked for an international marketing agency where he worked with different Destination Marketing Organizations in Canada, United States, and Australia. Dustin has been with Spectra Venue Management since 2015.
Dustin holds a Bachelor of Tourism Management, and minor in Recreation from Vancouver Island University and has completed graduate studies in Destination Management and Tourism Leadership from Royal Roads University.
Dustin was born and grew up in Saskatchewan and enjoys travelling the world, road trips, fishing, and playing golf.
Cheryl Montgomery, MAPC is the Executive Director of the Fort St. John and District Chamber of Commerce. She has been a business owner, advocate, and educator her entire career. With a record of a successful business start-up and ownerships, a national independent company, senior municipal leadership, and Non-Profit leadership, Cheryl has a balanced and diverse perspective of all business management and organizational structures.
Cheryl’s extensive background in marketing, advertising and graphic design, has served many of the peace regions capital projects and branding initiatives over 200 regional corporations. She was a Project Manager with the construction of City of Grande Prairie’s largest capital project – Eastlink Centre. As spokesperson and public relations, and one of a team managers overseeing 300 employees. After completion of ELC, Cheryl made a choice to follow Communications further and completed her Masters in Communication in 2019. Working with organizations through generational transition, and organizational change. Dedicated to creating collaborative, creative and successful partnerships between generations is key to helping organizations through succession to grow and thrive.
Community has always been the foundation for work and personal success and growth. Cheryl is a long standing Rotarian of over 20 years. She has led and participated in local, regional and international projects that have changed lives. Serving as President in 2017 and on major committees that oversaw international projects and local fundraisers that generated 2.4 million annually for the local club, were an important part of her Community Commitment. Serving on the Rotary Wellness House Committee was a project closest to her heart. In addition to Rotary, Cheryl has served on Executive Boards with the QEII Hospital Foundation, The Grande Prairie Chamber of Commerce, the, Prairie Art Gallery, and numerous other organizations. Cheryl has accepted appointment to the Community Futures -Peace Liard, Board of Directors and the Northern Environmental Action Team in Fort St. John and also currently serves on the NEAT Board of Directors.
Having lived in Grande Prairie her entire life, moving to Fort St. John in 2019, has provided an exciting and new opportunity to continue to living a wonderful life in the North but with a view from British Columbia.
Michael Kurjata returned to Dawson Creek after a 32 year absence in 2014. He resided in Edmonton and raised a small family there. He decided he needed a change and felt that private practice would provide a good challenge and the opportunity to join Schilds Kurjata Kelly CPA presented itself. Since then, the firm has morphed to becoming SKK Chartered Professional Accountants. He has been a partner at SKK Chartered Professional Accountants since 2018. Michael, and his wife Nadia (a local artist), are proud to call Dawson Creek home.
Michael Whalley is the Executive Director with the Resource Municipalities Coalition. He resides in Fort St John.