Team Members Profile

Amy Smith (Rauscher)

Having a keen interest in international development from a young age, Amy completed her Bachelor of Commerce in International Business. After her undergraduate degree, she lived and worked abroad in Europe and Mexico. Returning to Canada, Amy completed her MBA with a specialization in International Affairs. 
 
Amy's personal goal is around empowerment and she is excited to engage and collaborate as the regional coordinator for GECCO.

Orton Mak

Luke Mennigke

Laurel Wayne-Nixon

Laurel moved to Vancouver the summer of 2018 to do an internship with BCCIC. She spent the previous year completing the first year of her Masters in International Environmental Studies in Norway. Previously she lived in Victoria where she went to the University of Victoria and received her BA in Political Science and Environmental Studies. She was a cheerleader at UVic and then the team manager after she graduated. For fun Laurel loves to cook, bake and try new restaurants- she even has an Instagram account dedicated to food! Laurel is passionate about policy, food and environmental sustainability. She is currently writing her thesis on the barriers environmental sustainable food businesses face. Laurel started working on SDG policy briefs during her internship where she was fully immersed into Agenda 2030. She has fallen in love with working in the policy realm and sees a powerful opportunity in the SDGs. Getting to interact and collaborate with people across the globe on the SDGs and recognizing the impact of the briefs has been the most rewarding part of being at BCCIC. She says that being at BCCIC is never boring- she loves the fast-paced environment that fosters new skills and abilities.

Keneisha Charles

Chapter Coordinator

Keneisha Charles is currently a student set to graduate in 2019 at Rutland Senior Secondary school in Kelowna. She is an avid volunteer within her school and community and has worked advocating for social issues such as promoting positive mental health, supporting diversity, and educating around substance abuse and violence prevention. As a young person, she is constantly inspired by the capacity for social and environmental change-making she sees her peers demonstrate and is passionate about advocating for the inclusion of youth in envisioning a more sustainable world for all. She am thrilled to be taking action in achieving this vision as the regional coordinator for GECCO.

Mari Otomo

Mari’s passion for children’s rights, global issues and contributing to sustainable and intergenerational transformative social change is grounded in her educational background in political science (BA) and social work (BSW, MSW). In addition to working in government agencies, Mari has a diverse range of experiences in grassroots and national non-profit agencies as well as the United Nations. Her international work has taken her to countries such as Ghana where she worked at a local development agency on an income generating project for rural women and in Japan, she has worked for a UN agency assisting in the development of a entrepreneurship and leadership training for youth in Iraq.

Currently, Mari works in policy, research and development within the field of child protection at the Vancouver Aboriginal Child and Family Services Society.  Additionally, Mari is a partner and consultant at Social Root Consulting. 

Rosalind Warner

Secretary

Rosalind has 25 years of experience teaching and researching in the areas of international development, global environmental politics and Canadian international policy.  She is the Contributing Editor of two books on Canadian Foreign Policy. She holds a PhD in Political Science from York University with specializations in International Relations and Canadian Politics, with a minor area of Peace Studies.  She has held various administrative positions at her home institution of Okanagan College, including Chair of Curriculum Program Proposal Committee, Chair of Department, Co-Chair of Internationalization Task Force, and Faculty Association Liaison.  Rosalind has been active in BCCIC through the Central Okanagan Chapter, GECCO, for the last 3 years, and has worked with the Chapter Steering Committee on a variety of projects, events, and strategic plans designed to bring together local diverse groups and passionate individuals who care about the future of our planet and peoples.  For more please visit rozwarner.com, or follow her on Twitter @rwarner23.

Kaila Borrelli

Kaila is a Regional Sales Manager for Ledcor Technical Services, managing a team of Project Coordinators across Albert and B.C. She is also the Co-Founder for Advocacy Vancouver, a non-profit that aims to build awareness in Vancouver about local socials justice, economic prosperity, environmental sustainability and educational events through digital promotion. This organization is bringing together a diverse community and helping increase public engagement; especially among youth in Vancouver. Kaila also has a Bachelor of Commerce with a specialization in International Business and Sustainability from the University of Victoria. This year Kaila participated in the BCCIC Bootcamp and attended the High-Level Political Forum at the UN in New York as a youth delegate.

Rebecca Mellett

Rebecca Mellett (BA, MA Carleton; MSc LSE) is a specialist in development economics and governance, with post-graduate Certification in Sustainability Management (Harvard) and will complete a Certificate in Applied Evaluation Methods (The Evaluators Institute) in 2019. She brings more than twenty years of experience in federal public policy, programs and evaluation for the (former) Canadian International Development Agency, the Privy Council Office, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, Health Canada, and Justice Canada.  Following her overseas posts as Head of Aid in Honduras and Peru, Rebecca branched out as an independent consultant serving the not-for-profit sector in capacity-building, fundraising and membership engagement.  Raised in Montreal and Toronto, having spent many years in Ottawa, she is fluent in English, French, and Spanish.  Rebecca lives in Victoria, British Columbia with her husband and 7-year old son.

Jerry Mundi | CVGAN

Jerry lives in the traditional territory of the K’ómoks people and has been a part of this community for over 20 years. He is a graduate of the Social Services program at North Island College and is currently continuing to learn with the University of Victoria. He continues to sit on the several committees at the college including the Board of Governors, Education Council, and Curriculum Committee. He also has a passion for working with youth. When he is not working with Comox Valley Global Awareness Network, he spends much of his time coaching and facilitating events for youth in sports. He has a passion for working with youth and hopes to continue to join the great energy he sees in the community with the great initiatives presenting themselves for youth to engage in social justice issues that affect their future and the sustainability of our lands and communities.

Ariel Mishkin

Ariel is the Co-Founder of Advocacy Vancouver, a non-profit that builds awareness in Vancouver about local social justice, economic prosperity, environmental sustainability and educational events by providing digital marketing support for various organizations. She is currently employed as the event planner for the Communicable Disease and Public Health Unit of the First Nations Health Authority, an experimental government that is run independently by First Nations Peoples of Canada. In this role, she manages programming logistics and budgets for conferences and workshops on sexual health, tuberculosis, harm reduction, HIV, and Immunizations for Indigenous communities across the province. For the past year, Ariel has sat on the Board of Directors of the BC Council for International Cooperation (BCCIC) and recently returned for the United Nations High-Level Political Forum in New York as a BCCIC Youth Delegate. Previously, she worked in Mongolia and India with local NGOs to develop marketing and communication plans and held multiple positions on the board of directors of the University of Victoria’s Student Society.

Marya Folinsbee

Chapter Coordinator

Marya Folinsbee joined the Kootenay Collaboration Network as the Regional Coordinator in Spring of 2019.

Marya is a theatre artist, community organizer and mom.  Her formal education is in Peace and Conflict Studies at McMaster University, where she focused on arts-based social transformation.  Marya has a long history in social movement organizing.  She has co-created and facilitated with the Hamilton Freeskool, biked through the Tar Sands with the Sierra Youth Coalition, coordinated the 2010 People's Summit, and worked with youth at the Nelson Women's Centre.  She's passionate about integrating art and storytelling with political empowerment and sustainability.