We are dedicated to serving our clients, as reflected by our remarkable community of board of directors, staff, clients, and families.
Chief Executive Officer
Terri has worked at Surrey Place for more than 25 years, starting in the Adult Program as a Psychologist and moving to manager of Adult Programs and Director of Clinical Programs. Currently, Terri is the Chief Executive officer. She has previous experience working as Vice President of Clinical Services, in psychology at various school boards, the Autism Clinic at CAMH as well as in private practice.
The Clinical Services portfolio includes Executive leadership and responsibility for all Clinical Programs including Adults, Children and Youth and Infants as well as the specific Autism fee for service offerings . It also includes; Developmental Services Ontario Toronto Region (DSO TR); the MMW Video Conferencing Program providing clinical services to Northwestern Ontario; the Blind-Low Vision Early Intervention Program; the Augmentative Communication and Writing Aids service; Coordinated Service Planning; the FASD diagnostic clinic and the Community Networks of Specialized Care for the Toronto Region.
Terri is a registered Clinical-Developmental Psychologist with a specialization in developmental disabilities. She received her Bachelor of Arts and Master’s in Developmental Psychology at the University of Manitoba and her Ph.D. in Clinical Developmental Psychology at York University. She completed her Executive Leadership certificate with the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. She has volunteered as a Board Member for both developmental and health care providers.
Vice President, People and Culture
Bruce is accountable for the organization’s Human Resources and Organizational Development strategies. Bruce has over 20 years of experience in human resources in both the public and private sectors.
Previously Bruce has held HR roles with LifeLabs (formerly MDS Diagnostic Services), Bridgepoint Health, LOFT Community Services and The Canadian Hearing Society. Bruce holds a Bachelor of Arts (Political Studies) degree from the University of Guelph, a Post Graduate Certificate in Human Resource Management from Humber College and has completed the Advanced Program in Human Resource Management at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto and most recently completed an Executive Certificate in Conflict Management through the University of Windsor Law School. Bruce is a Certified Human Resources Leader (CHRL) and member of the Human Resources Professionals Association. Since 2014 Bruce has also served as a volunteer baseball coach and manager with the Burlington Organized Minor Baseball Association.
Vice President – Adult Services
Jeanny has spent her 30+ year career at Surrey Place. She started as a Senior Behavior Therapist, and then progressed to ASD Consultant, Manager of School Support Program, Director of Adult Services, and most recently Senior Director of Adult Services. Jeanny has built strong relationships with outside agencies and forged new relationships with nontraditional partners.
Currently, Jeanny is completing the Public Sector Executive Leadership program at the Rotman School of Business. She holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Toronto and has experience as a sessional lecturer at George Brown College. Continuing education is important to Jeanny, and she has taken numerous communication and conflict resolution courses. She recently completed the prosocial Facilitator certificate.
Jeanny has volunteered as a Board Member for many years with a community mental health association and helped develop a Saturday respite program for Korean community youth with ASD and their caregivers. Before the COVID 19 pandemic, Jeanny was actively involved with the Therapeutic Paws of Canada Therapy Program with her Goldendoodle Charlie.
Vice President – Children’s Services
Lisa Binns has over 25 years of experience working in Autism Services and was the Director of Children’s Intake and Wellness Services at Surrey Place.
Before joining Surrey Place, Lisa held the position of Regional Executive Director at Kerry’s Place. In addition, she held a range of positions including Senior Therapist in the first provincial IBI program, Autism Consultant in the school support program, Program Manager for an ABA program and then the Director of Service and Supports for residential and community Services.
In her 2 years at Surrey Place as a Director, Lisa launched both the Wellness Services program, and the Coordinated Service Planning. She has also shepherded the Integration of Intake Services and led the establishment of the Transitions Team initiative at Surrey Place.
Her educational background includes successful completion of Public Sector Leadership with the Rotman Executive Program (University of Toronto), Leadership and Union Negotiations (Executive Management, Queen’s University) and a B.A. (Hons.) from York University.
Vice President – Finance, Information & Communications Technology
Anne joins Surrey Place with nearly 25 years of Finance and management experience, including IT strategy. Most recently, Anne was the Director of Finance at the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada. Prior to this, Anne held positions at the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation, IBM Canada, and Deloitte.
Anne is a Chartered Accountant (CA, CPA) and is fully bilingual in both English and French. Anne has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Bordeaux, France, which included terms where she worked with children with autism, and a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Quebec in Montreal.
Surrey Place is governed by a Board of Directors, with the Chief Executive Officer serving in an ex-officio capacity.
The Board of Directors are responsible for ensuring that Surrey Place achieves success in the following areas:
- The overall integrity of the organization – including vision, mission, strategic direction and core values
- Quality of programs and services
- Financial soundness
- Compliance with all statutory requirements
- Responsiveness to needs of the community
As a Human Resources executive with almost 30 years of experience, Fern Goncalves has extensive experience in providing human resources and training services within healthcare and a regulatory association as well as expertise with strategic planning, leadership training and succession planning, advocacy and community outreach. Fern is currently the Director of People Development at Professional Engineers Ontario, responsible for overseeing various departments, including human resources, professional development, volunteer services and events/conference management. Previously she held a leadership position with Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital.
Fern has been actively involved in numerous Board and committees with the United Way of York Region and the Catholic Community Services of York Region – a family and social services agency accredited by Family Services Ontario and a member of the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants.
An active member with the Canadian Society of Association Executives and Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA), Fern has also served on various HRPA committees and participated in mentorship programs. Fern holds a Masters of Adult Education (M.Ed.) from the University of Toronto – OISE as well as the designation of Certified Human Resources Leader (CHRL) from the Human Resources Professionals Association.
Fern joined the Board of Directors in March 2016.
Carolyn Acker began her professional nursing career in the health sector, working her way up the ranks of executive leadership through a combination of education, practical experience and, above all, a desire to give back. She has over 40 years of experience in the health care sector. Carolyn was the founding CEO of Pathways to Education Canada, a public foundation dedicated to helping youth in low-income communities graduate from high school and successfully transition into post-secondary education. Acker used the experience she gained providing health services to disadvantaged people living in a troubled, despairing community to drive her entrepreneurial spirit. In 2001 the innovative Pathways to Education, was born out of her passion for helping young people break the cycle of poverty, continue their education and find success in a career.
In 2010, she received an Honourary Doctorate of Science from the University of New Brunswick, on July 1, 2012 she was awarded Membership in The Order of Canada and in 2014 she received an Honourary Doctorate of Science from Queen’s University.
Carolyn previously served as Board member from October 2010 to February 2017. She joined the Finance Committee in July 2019 and the Board in June 2020.
Andrea Englert-Rygus has extensive business experience from the chemical, retail, healthcare and public sectors. Her career has included roles in finance, sales, customer service, human resources, labour relations, operations and manufacturing.
Andrea is currently Chief Procurement Officer and Vice President Customer Relationship Management at Plexxus, a Toronto based healthcare shared services organization with expertise in supply chain management, IT and business transformation. Prior to joining Plexxus, Andrea held leadership positions with Baxter Healthcare, PepsiCo and DuPont Canada.
Andrea holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Toronto and has been actively involved in numerous Boards and associations. Andrea is currently a member of the Conference Board of Canada Innovation Procurement Council and a Director on the Supply Chain Management Association (SCMA) National Board.
Andrea joined the board in October 2016 and was appointed as Treasurer in May 2020.
Past President and Director
As an Organizational Behaviour expert with almost 30 years of experience, Helen Wojcinski operates her own consulting practice and has worked with clients in a variety of industries and all three levels of government.
Helen has served on boards and committees for health care planning, children’s mental health, the engineering profession in Ontario, and the Canadian National Exhibition Association. In addition to an MBA from Western University Ivey School of Business, Helen also holds a B.A.Sc. (Civil) from the University of Toronto and a Certificate in Leading Strategic Change from the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management.
She is both a Licensed Professional Engineer in Ontario and a Certified Management Consultant.
Helen joined the Board of Directors in September 2013.
Amanda Baaba Forson is a lawyer and practices general civil litigation. Baaba handles a wide variety of public law cases and has appeared before tribunals and at all levels of court, including the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, Federal Court, Ontario Court of Appeal, Federal Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Canada.
She is a member of the Board of Directors and Vice President of Equity for the Association of Law Officers of the Crown (“ALOC”), a collective bargaining association that represents civil lawyers and articling law students employed by the Ontario government.
Baaba holds a Bachelor of Arts with Honours degree from York University and a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Windsor, Faculty of Law. She is a recipient of the ALOC Michael Fleishman Crown Counsel Award and the University of Windsor, Faculty of Law, Honourable Julius Alexander Isaac Award and Scholarship.
Baaba joined the Board of Directors in 2021.
Amanda Kennedy operates a consulting firm focused on providing communication and facilitation services for complex environmental, infrastructure and community-based projects. Amanda is the former Chief Conservation Officer and Vice President of Communications for Oakville Hydro. She is also an active volunteer in her downtown neighbourhood, and the past Chair of the Toronto Council of the Canadian Red Cross. Amanda holds a Master of Science degree from the University of Oxford.
Amanda was pleased to join the Board of Directors in February 2017.
Vivian Leong is a Senior Manager at the Ministry of Health. She has extensive experience leading change management initiatives across the health sector and is adept at building consensus across diverse stakeholder groups. As a seasoned public servant, Vivian has led numerous initiatives requiring navigation through policy, fiscal and legislative processes, including the expansion of public drug benefits for children and youth in Ontario. In addition to policy expertise, Vivian is skilled in strategy, data analytics and management, quality improvement and procurement. She holds a Master of Science Degree from the University of British Columbia.
Vivian was pleased to join the Board of Directors in June 2020.
Kemi is a law professional with over 20 years of experience. She is a managing partner of Topmarké Attorneys LLP in Toronto where she has successfully represented a long list of clients at different levels of courts in Ontario. Kemi specializes in human rights issues, workplace Code and none-Code investigations, including anti-Black racism investigations, immigration and refugee protection law and appeals, and consent and capacity law practice.
Kemi holds a Master of Laws degree from the University of Toronto and the University of Lagos. She is a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitration (UK) and the Association of Workplace Investigators. Kemi’s volunteer work includes representation at consent and capacity hearings, Pro Bono Ontario, and mentorship to youths and young lawyers. She is dedicated to using her expertise, professional and personal experience to advance the interest of the vulnerable in society.
Kemi joined the Board of Directors in 2021.
Michael Richardson is a Partner and co-owner of Eclipsys Solutions, Yoppworks and GoSpaces, three Canadian based Software and Professional Services organizations within the Information Technology Industry. Prior to founding these companies with his Partner, Michael enjoyed an extensive career within the I/T industry working in executive and senior management roles at Oracle, Sun Microsystems and IBM. Michael also spent eight years as the Canadian President and CEO of Business Travel International (BTI), a leading global travel management company.
Michael is the father of an adult son severely affected by autism and is familiar with the challenges parents face as they navigate the various service models across the province. This personal experience partially brought Michael to Surrey Place as a Board Member in September 2009, serving for eight years. Michael was pleased to rejoin the Board in June 2020 when asked again.
Michael graduated from the University of Western Ontario, is married with two adult children and lives in Toronto.
Michael Rooke is an Associate Partner with Tinkham LLP with extensive experience providing assurance, business advisory, tax and financial reporting advice to owner-managed businesses and not-for-profit organizations and registered charities.
Michael provides professional services in areas of financial risk management, budget analysis, board governance and advancement, financial policy development and charity and government reporting and compliance.
Michael holds a Bachelor of Business Administration, Honours from Wilfrid Laurier University, is a Chartered Professional Accountant and a Licensed Public Accountant.
Michael joined the Board of Directors in 2020.