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Our Board

The Board of Directors is the governance body of the Guelph Humane Society. The Director’s on the Board represent the membership of the GHS, and provides high-level oversight and strategic direction for the organization. The Board also ensures that the activities of the GHS fall within the organization’s governance policies, and that the GHS is in compliance with all relevant laws. Candidates for the Board are selected from the community, and are individuals, who are passionate about the GHS and animal welfare and have skills that assist the Board with its overall goals. Volunteer Board members are elected by the GHS membership at the Annual General Meeting, and serve a three-year term in accordance with the corporation’s by-laws. If you are interested in becoming a Board member, please contact the Board Chair at chairbod@guelphhumane.ca

Contact the Board

Chair of the Board: chairbod@guelphhumane.ca

Secretary of the Board: board@guelphhumane.ca

Meaghan Middleton - Chair background

Meaghan Middleton - Chair

Meaghan is passionate about community engagement and animal welfare. She has served on several boards through her career, including the Canadian Dachshund Rescue. Meaghan shares her home with Evinrude, a little black cat adopted from GHS. Meaghan has worked in the not for profit, academic and tech sectors since returning to Canada 15 years ago.

Peter Tesche - Treasurer background

Peter Tesche - Treasurer

Peter moved to Guelph in late 2015. Anxious to integrate into and contribute to his new home, he joined the boards of three community non-profit organizations including the Guelph Humane Society where he also volunteers. Peter is passionate about animal welfare having rescued and cared for stray cats, including 11 in and around his home on South Florida prior to returning to Ontario. He also volunteered for 100+ Abandoned Dogs of Everglades Florida. Peter is a CFA© charterholder and has had a long and successful career in finance living and working in Canada, the U.S., Mexico and Brazil in addition to a long-term project in China. He and his wife Jackie share their Guelph home with two former GHS foster kittens, Hershey and Lily.

Troy Ford - Secretary background

Troy Ford - Secretary

Troy joined the Guelph Humane Society board in the summer of 2018.  He wanted to give his time back to the community through an organization who was known for their care and compassion.  GHS provides that both to the people and the animals who make up this great city.  Professionally, Troy has worked in the financial services industry for over 20 years and willingly brings his experience and knowledge to the board.

Shane Bateman - Past Chair background

Shane Bateman - Past Chair

Dr. Shane Bateman served on the GHS Board of Directors for ten years, most recently as Chair. He stepped down as Chair in July 2021.

GHS is grateful for his decade of commitment to the organization, and for all of his leadership.

Shane is passionate about community engagement and has worked to engage other organizations and individuals within our community and captivate them to understand the work the shelter does, and motivate them to give more generously of their time, attention, understanding, and financial support. In his journey as a veterinarian and academic, Shane has learned the important value of teamwork, compromise, and excellent communication skills, and he brought these qualities to the board table.

Alex Ciccone - Director background

Alex Ciccone - Director

Alex is an environmental and municipal lawyer practicing at Garrod Pickfield LLP in Guelph. He also co-teaches a graduate course at the University of Guelph and sits on the Board of Directors for Our Energy Guelph and Vegfest Guelph.

A passionate animal advocate and vegan since 2008, Alex advocates for animal rights through public events, writing, and representation of clients who protect animals’ interests.  Alex can be found running or cycling Guelph’s trail system, woodworking or paddling in his homemade canoe.

David DiMatteo - Director background

David DiMatteo - Director

David has been involved with the Guelph Humane Society since 2016 as a member of the Finance Committee. He wanted to be part of an Organization that is vital to the community and focuses on the welfare of animals in society. David has also been a part of another local not-for-profit board since 2015 with a focus on fundraising and volunteer coordination. David has been an accounting and tax advisor since 2013 and wants to be a contributing member of the Board with knowledge in accounting and finance.

Jim Kearns - Director background

Jim Kearns - Director

Jim is a retired high-tech executive with a background in engineering, business and law.  Since retiring, he has become involved in the not-for-profit sector including volunteer Board positions and Committee work.  Jim believes that society has an obligation to safeguard and advocate for the animals in our community and that otherwise touch our lives.  He has had many dogs over the years including some that were adopted from GHS.

Lena Levison - Director background

Lena Levison - Director

Lena is a veterinarian who works as the Saputo Dairy Care Program Manager in Population Medicine at the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC).  She helps support student learning around dairy cattle welfare. As her areas of interest and experience revolve around animals and animal welfare, Lena felt the GHS board was the perfect opportunity to contribute to her community and help support the positive roles animals play in our lives.

Lena says her house is kept in constant chaos by two Boston Terriers, Maggie and Violet, who were “foster fails” from Toronto Animal Services. In her free time, Lena can be found taking the dogs out for a walk, reading, playing volleyball, enjoying yoga, and singing in the U of G choir.

Katie MacDonald - Director background

Katie MacDonald - Director

Katie and her family moved to Guelph to complete her PhD at the University of Guelph after spending years on the east coast of Canada. She is happy to serve the community and the animals on the Guelph Humane Society Board. Professionally, her work, teaching, and research surrounds Canadian farm animal policy and procedure, animal welfare legislation, and the political economy of food and agricultural systems. Katie, Stephen, and their daughter share their home with three rescue dogs – Molly, Mr Buddy, and Evey.

Earla Smith - Director background

Earla Smith - Director

Earla and her husband moved to Guelph five years ago from K-W to be closer to their son, daughter-in-law and, at the time, soon-to-come new grandson. Originally from the beautiful Eastern Townships in Quebec, as outdoor lovers, they enjoyed skiing, x-country and canoeing in l’ Estrie with its beautiful lakes and mountains.

A firm advocate of volunteering, as an employment counselor, Earla views volunteering as the cornerstone of community.  Serving on the Guelph Humane Society board reaffirms her personal commitment to a cause that has always been close to her heart…the welfare of animals.

Earla loves to spend time with her enthusiastic and happy grand boys (ages 2 and 5), cook, bake, paint artsy bird houses, and read. She lives with her husband, Stuart, and rescue Australian Shepard, Daisy.

Gael van Veen - Director background

Gael van Veen - Director

Gael came to Guelph in the 1980’s to complete her nursing training and never left. The years have flown by, busy with family, career, volunteering with many organizations and seeking out opportunities to give back to this community. Gael is passionate about animals and believes that they teach us life lessons in simplicity. Who else could unconditionally support us through tears, laughter, thunder and stillness, all for a simple scratch behind the ears.

She hopes to bring her unique style of energy to the GHS as it puts down new roots. Gael and her family have a long history of housing many fur babies and currently lives with her husband David, son Boaz and felines Lucy and Cinder.