Board of Directors

At the heart of every successful organization are the people who work tirelessly to support the mission and vision set out. Great leaders lend their strength and talents to provide inspiration and guidance through every decision.

Who We Are

We are individuals passionate about contributing to the Society’s values, mission, goals and objectives of enriching the lives of people and companion animals through animal sheltering, programs and services, and community engagement.

About the Board

Each board member is elected to a two year term, with the option to renew for a maximum of three additional terms (total 8 years).  As Board vacancies occur, new directors are elected by the EHS membership at the Annual General Meeting.  The Board conducts its work through three groups: Finance and Audit Committee, Governance and Humane Resources Committee, and an External Relations Advisory Panel.

Board of Directors

Board Chair

Allison Radford

Board Chair

Allison Radford

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Several years ago, when Allison brought her youngest puppy to EHS for training, she discovered an opportunity to unite with an organization that shared her passion for animal advocacy and desire to help. Bringing her perspective from corporate governance, finance, and operations experience, Allison also has experience from sitting on past audit committees for other boards she has served. With an accounting background and extensive operational experience, her ability to analyze items from both perspectives serve her well in contributing to EHS Board decisions. Outside of work hours, Allison spends her time reading or outdoors with her family including three wonderful Labradors, Zoe, Ansley, and Nacho.

Vice Chair

Patricia Misutka

Vice Chair

Patricia Misutka

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As Executive Director of Corporate Communications with the Edmonton Police Service, Patricia brings a wealth of governance, public sector leadership and business capacity to her role with the EHS Board of Directors. Her work experience across both public and private sectors in senior leadership roles has been grounded in a belief about the need to build success based on strong relationships and connections across multiple communities. Her non-profit experience with the Glenrose Hospital Foundation and the Nina Haggerty Centre for the Arts has given her a strong grounding in the social sector and understanding of strategies that create success. Patricia has always adored animals and currently spends time with Winston, a seven-year-old Jack Russell Terrier, and Fiona, a mixed breed four-year-old rescue from Mexico who had to be rescued a second time. Both are crazy ball hounds. 

Secretary

Sumeet Saroya, CPA

Secretary

Sumeet Saroya, CPA

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Sumeet’s love for animals ranges from the tiniest critters to the grandest companions. His passion to assist in the nurturing and caring for animals has drawn him to joining the EHS Board. Sumeet also hopes to honour the memory of his rottweiler Oscar by serving the animals and the community at EHS. With a CPA background and experience in consulting and corporate development, Sumeet is excited to bring a unique blend of financial expertise and strategic insight to the table. In his free time, Sumeet enjoys traveling and trying new eateries in the city.

Treasurer

Darren Lunt

Treasurer

Darren Lunt

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Becoming a member of the EHS Board brings Darren full circle to where his career began in 1990 when he was hired as the Society’s fundraising manager. The six and a half years working at the shelter offered many rewarding experiences. A personal highlight for Darren was launching the inaugural Pets in Park event that continues to this day. Darren’s professional career continued in the non-profit sector, where his fundraising skills evolved into senior manager responsibilities with both the Royal Tyrrell Museum and Pilgrims Hospice Society. A switch over to the corporate sector in the mid-2000s eventually led him to the President role at Weldco Companies, a large heavy steel fabricator with locations across Canada. In early 2024, Darren transitioned back to the non-profit sector and is currently serving as the President and CEO of the Mental Health Foundation of Alberta. Darren is originally from Edmonton, where his two adult children currently pursue their post-secondary degrees. Free time is spent with his wife and their Bernedoodle, Cleo, at their cabin. It was the recent addition of Cleo to the Lunt family that reignited Darren’s passion for animal welfare and his desire to become involved with the EHS.

Director

Sheri Cameron

Director

Sheri Cameron

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In addition to contributing to the important work of animal care and well-being, Sheri joined the EHS to help others create and celebrate the special connections between people and animals. Sheri aims to support the values, mission and goals of the EHS by building relationships and facilitating connections within the community. Currently the Director of People, Culture and Communications at OFX, Sheri provides strategic advice in the areas of employee engagement, cultural development, internal communications and workforce future readiness. Through this, Sheri remains focused on building high performance teams and leading ongoing change initiatives to support business performance. She also has a thorough understanding of governance and collaboration, further enhanced through M&A and integration experience. Being a lifelong Edmontonian, a mother of two, and co-owner of a local Edmonton business with her husband, Sheri has a strong passion for bettering the community in which she lives and works. Outside of work, Sheri enjoys travelling with her husband, their two children, and Hope, the expressive and loyal Labradoodle who is instant friends with everyone she meets.

Director

Dr. Jocelyn Forseille

Director

Dr. Jocelyn Forseille

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Dr. Forseille recently retired after more than 40 years as a full-time veterinarian. Jocelyn worked in private practice before joining the Animal Health Technology program at NAIT. The last nine years of her career has been with the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association. Throughout her career she has championed animal welfare and been involved with meetings and/or initiatives with the Edmonton Humane Society, City of Edmonton Animal Care and Control, Alberta SPCA, WILDNorth and other animal welfare organizations. Her current volunteer positions are Chair of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) Veterinary Technology Program Accreditation Committee. Jocelyn has also trained as a site visitor and participated in veterinary college accreditation site visits. She is a volunteer veterinarian for Alberta Helping Animals Society and for the Needs Committee, Animal Cancer Therapy Subsidization Society. In veterinary practice and in volunteer roles, animal welfare has been a constant and Jocelyn looks forward to using her knowledge and experience in joining the EHS Board of Directors. Jocelyn and her family have always had at least one pet – currently Susie, a senior cat. Jocelyn and Glenn have two adult children who live nearby with grand-dog Theo.

Director

Dr. Louis Francescutti

Director

Dr. Louis Francescutti

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Tom, our adventurous short-haired Tabby, embarked on a six-month escapade this year, only to return a few pounds lighter but no worse for wear. His triumphant homecoming reaffirmed the profound role animals play in our lives. Lou, a seasoned emergency physician at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, witnesses firsthand the hardships that pervade our society. He passionately advocates for the integral role animals—ranging from birds to horses—play in fostering happiness, comfort, and purpose, especially for those in need. As a dedicated member of the EHS Board, Lou embraces the opportunity to collaborate with like-minded individuals and the exemplary staff to weave moments of joy and fulfillment for all involved.

Director

Kathleen Garbutt

Director

Kathleen Garbutt

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Kathleen is a lawyer who is proud to call Edmonton home. Born and raised in Edmonton, she is proud to give back to the best city in the province. As a lawyer, Kathleen has endeavoured to provide practical advice and ardent advocacy whenever possible. Like her fellow board members, Katheen is a passionate animal lover. Her first cat, Ginger Daisy, was a Christmas gift when she was five; Ginger showed Kathleen the special bond a pet can create and sparked a lifelong commitment to caring for the animals in her life. Currently, she has a standard poodle named Theodore (Teddy for short) and a turtle named Timo. Kathleen has always had a special place in her heart for horses and was a competitive showjumper for 20 years. Currently, she loves watching her daughter ride her pony Twix. Kathleen is excited and honoured to serve the community, and particularly those who cannot speak for themselves, by contributing to the Edmonton Humane Society.

Director

Gord Gilroy

Director

Gord Gilroy

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Born, raised, and educated in Edmonton, Gord graduated from the University of Alberta with a degree in Business. He is president and co-founder of Vision Creative, a creative and advertising agency in Edmonton that has supported companies and non-profits across Western Canada for 25+ years. As a small business owner Gord wants the best for his city and that includes the positive impact the Humane Society has on animals of all kinds. He understands the importance of good governance to ensure an organization can achieve its goals – both short- and long-term. He welcomes the opportunity to draw upon his candour and experience – in addition to his love and respect for animals of all kinds – to propel the EHS forward. Gord and his wife Angie have two adult kids – Jack and Grace, and two adult cats – Katie and Henry; the only difference is that the latter two have been spoiled since birth. Away from work he enjoys hiking /skiing in the Canadian Rockies, travel abroad and art in its various forms.

Director

Karen Leibovici

Director

Karen Leibovici

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Karen believes that EHS is a pivotal organization in the advancement of animal welfare practices. As a former Edmonton City Councillor she is aware of the positive impact that EHS has in advocating for vulnerable animals. She sees this as an opportunity to share her professional background in labour relations, personnel management and social work as well as her political and extensive board governance experience. She has always loved animals which these days  include the many birds and squirrels in the backyard. Karen, her husband and grandson can sometimes be seen in the neighbourhood walking their two cats, Cooper and Cleo on leashes.

Director

Robert Parks

Director

Robert Parks

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The welfare of animals has been a personal ethos of Rob’s for as long as he can remember; he believes animals deserve our affection, care, and respect. Throughout his life he has seen and benefited from all that a pet can provide. The opportunity to volunteer with the Edmonton Humane Society was an opportunity he could not bypass. It gives him a platform to marry his skills and experience with his personal beliefs. Rob’s skills and experience in strategic planning, community development, and governance will be leveraged in his work with EHS. As a partner in a consulting firm, Rob is adept at working collaboratively with others in pursuit of common outcomes. He has seen in innumerable communities, the difference a group of dedicated people can make. Outside of work Rob enjoys golfing and getting out on his bike. Between pets at the moment, he relishes his time with the pets of family, friends, and anyone walking their dog.

Director

Lorenzo Pasutto

Director

Lorenzo Pasutto

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Since joining the EHS board, Lorenzo remains dedicated to advancing humane education and community engagement while considering supports for the long-term financial viability of the organization. He is drawn by his desire to contribute to a longstanding pillar of the community in an area of personal interest that enriches so many lives. Bringing experience as a management consultant, working collaboratively to identify and solve complex organizational issues across several industries, Lorenzo adds valuable perspective and skills to the collective wealth of the EHS Board of Directors. His ingenuity as the founder of a technology company working with Artificial Intelligence and focus on gauging customer satisfaction provide a unique view of data analytics. Lorenzo believes his love of animals began after seeing “The Velveteen Rabbit” as a child and shortly after adopting a stuffy he lovingly named “Bunny Rubble”. He currently spends as much time as possible saving his yard from his rambunctious and truffle-seeking Lagotto Romagnolo puppy.

Director

Amanda Pechousek

Director

Amanda Pechousek

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Amanda’s love for animals is what initially drew her to EHS. After learning more about the organization’s goal to not only provide basic food and shelter but their dedication to improve the relationships between companion animals and the community, she proudly joined the Board of Directors.  Participating and helping advise on several other boards since 2014 along with her experience as a Chartered Accountant and Certified Fraud Examiner, Amanda brings a unique perspective on risk mitigation. With specializations in forensic investigations, fraud awareness training, anti-fraud/anti-corruption programs and controls, and litigation/dispute services, she desires to help position the organization as the new standard for animal welfare and build upon its great reputation.  Camping since she could crawl, Amanda’s appreciation for animals began at a young age. Currently, the proud pet guardian of one rambunctious Maine Coon cat, Gir, she enjoys spending spare time drawing, kayaking, and on camping trips with her husband and their family’s newest campers – their two young sons.

Director

Dr. Ted Purcell

Director

Dr. Ted Purcell

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Dr. Purcell retired in 2020 after a 38-year career as a veterinarian and co-owner of the Hermitage Veterinary Hospital in Edmonton. His volunteer experience with the Edmonton Humane Society is extensive and began early in his professional career. Over the years, Dr. Purcell has assisted in the areas of humane education and communications. He has a keen interest in animal welfare and education. This has led to invitations to lecture at pre- and post-secondary institutions. Most recently, Dr. Purcell served on the Board of Directors of the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation and the Alberta Cerebral Palsy Sports Association. Dr. Purcell is passionate about public education and the stewardship of animals. He looks forward to continuing to share his passion and experience as a member of the EHS Board of Directors. And to support the EHS in advancing its mission, vision, and values. Dr. Purcell enjoys spending his time on long walks with his two dogs, Copper and Mulder. As well as volunteering for a number community organizations in Edmonton.

Director

Dale Wispinski

Director

Dale Wispinski

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Dale was drawn to join the EHS Board because of their commitment to enriching the lives of people and companion animals, as well as its longstanding contributions to the community. With an education in communications and law, Dale is passionate about helping others and currently holds the position as the CEO and Chief Appeals Commissioner with the Appeals Commission for Alberta Workers’ Compensation. Her extensive legal background is a valuable addition to the EHS Board as is her commitment to supporting the organization in achieving its vision, mission, and strategic goals while playing a part in sharing the exceptional work that the EHS does. Dale grew up with family dogs and has had a soft spot for animals since. When enjoying leisure time, she can be found on long nature walks – exploring the mountains with Stephen, her Australian Labradoodle.

EHS Leadership Team

Chief Executive Officer

Liza Sunley

Chief Executive Officer

Liza Sunley

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Since joining EHS at the start of 2019, Liza has leveraged her long history in non-profit leadership towards the goal of development and implementation of a five-year strategic plan. Utilizing her skills in management and planning, Liza is dedicated to supporting the community, EHS staff, and the animals in their care. Having previously opened her home to foster dogs and utilizing services such as Central Bark and Muddy Paws Dog Wash, she found that joining EHS was a perfect fit. Before EHS, Liza shared her talents as the Chief Operating Officer at Bissell Centre, overseeing all programs and services for this inner-city non-profit, supporting people living in poverty. She was also Executive Director at the Lurana Shelter Society, a local refuge providing safety and supports for women and children who are victims of domestic violence. As a dedicated local leader and spokesperson for Ovarian Cancer Canada, Liza was recognized with the Peggy Truscott Award of Hope and the YWCA’s Women of Distinction Award. Liza’s governance experience includes being an active Board Director for both Ovarian Cancer Canada and Humane Canada. She also holds a Certified Animal Welfare Administrator (CAWA) designation. As a child, Liza was always passionate about wanting a pet, but with a father in the air force, frequent moves made this a challenge. Her first pet came in grade 6 with a hamster named Fifi. Since then, her love of animals has only grown. She enjoys cooking, spending time with family and friends, sunny days with the family cat (Chester) – adopted from EHS – as well as taking her adopted dog (Ruby) to the park.

Director, Animal Health

Dr. Michelle Meckelborg, DVM, CCRP

Director, Animal Health

Dr. Michelle Meckelborg, DVM, CCRP

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Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Fellow 2021-2022 Dr. Meckelborg joined EHS in October 2017 as a casual Shelter Veterinarian where she found her love for shelter medicine, and moved into the role of Director, Animal Health in late 2021. Previously she worked in private veterinary practice for 14 years, after graduating from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) in 2003. She also volunteered at the Saskatoon SPCA and Edmonton Humane Society. In her role of Director, Animal Health, she oversees the medical team who examine, treat and perform surgeries on our shelter animals, as well as EHS’ spay/neuter programs including PALS (Prevent Another Litter Subsidy) and TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return). She is looking forward to expanding these programs through collaboration with community partners. Additionally, Dr. Meckelborg ensures EHS is up-to-date on best shelter medicine practices. Dr. Meckelborg knew from a young age that she wanted to be a Veterinarian – so much so, that she never had back-up plan! A special interest in exotic pets, soft tissue surgery, and a insatiable appetite for learning keep Dr. Meckelborg continually expanding her veterinary knowledge. Currently, she is enrolled in the Maddie’s Fund Fellowship Program, a joint effort between the Shelter Medicine program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of California-Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Programs. When not at the shelter, Michelle’s two teenage daughters keep her busy. She also enjoys hanging out with her senior dog Ruby, fostering kittens, or relaxing at yoga class or with a good book.

Director, Donor and Stakeholder Relations

Mary Saretski, CFRE

Director, Donor and Stakeholder Relations

Mary Saretski, CFRE

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Mary brings over 19 years of experience to EHS’ leadership team, having previously been with the University of Alberta and Habitat for Humanity. Passionate about relationship building and community, Mary also volunteers her time with her local community league board and the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Edmonton and Area Chapter. In her role with EHS, she oversees fund development, communications and marketing, community engagement, and humane education. She strives to build a strong team while bringing our donors, volunteers, stakeholders, and community members even closer to our work and raising awareness about what we do. Mary is known to be an out-of-the-box thinker and problem solver, whose curiosity and devotion to lifelong learning has contributed to her success with both fundraising and relationship building. She revels in sharing her knowledge and experience about development and stakeholder relations, having taught education sessions for the not-for-profit sector and speaking at national fundraising conferences over the past six years. When she’s not engaging with our EHS supporters and community, Mary can be found at Central Bark Dog Park with her two dogs: Eugene and Emmy. Her love of animals goes as far back as she can remember, from when her first dog – Fetch – came into her life at the age of five. She credits Fetch with having taught her all about the unconditional love that companion animals provide us. Mary also enjoys board-game nights with family and friends.

Director, Operations

Mike Foote, DBTMc

Director, Operations

Mike Foote, DBTMc

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Mike joined EHS bringing with him experience from the Edmonton Police Service (EPS) K-9 and Tactical Divisions. Building an incredible relationship with his K-9 partner allowed him to tap into a deeper connection with animals. Animal welfare and public service runs in Mike’s blood. As a youth, Mike’s parents operated the London Humane Society and his uncle later operated the Scarborough Humane Society. Exposure to animals at a young age helped inform his decision to join the K-9 unit where he really witnessed the incredible acts animals are capable of. Mike accepted the Director of Operations position after having held several other roles with EHS, including with the behaviour and training teams and most recently as the Director of Administration where he oversaw IT and facilities. When not busy with ensuring things are running smoothly at EHS, Mike enjoys spending time with his family and pets, especially playing fetch and doing scent work with his Shepard, Xena.

Chief Financial Officer

Connie Muller, CPA,CMA, CCA, FCP

Chief Financial Officer

Connie Muller, CPA,CMA, CCA, FCP

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Prior to EHS, Connie worked for SCM Insurance Services. Her diverse experience has provided teams and management with support ensuring timely and accurate financial data combined with analysis, process improvements and IT options. With EHS she continues her mission to implement improvements and process efficiencies. Embracing her role as the Chief Financial Officer, she seeks to foster a nurturing environment for all staff that consists of thoughtful leadership, recognition, and growth, by leveraging her skills in team building and mentorship. Having grown up on the family farm and surrounded by wildlife, Connie was introduced to animals at a young age with everything from kittens, rabbits, and dogs, to livestock. In her free time, Connie enjoys gardening, travel, and a variety of creative pursuits.