Staff & Board

STAFF

Colin Druhan

Executive Director

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Colin joined Pride at Work Canada/Fierté au travail Canada as Executive Director in 2014. Since then, he has prioritized the extension of the organization’s reach outside of Canada's largest cities into a wide range of communities across the country and has been thrilled to watch the organization grow from 30 to over 140 corporate members. He frequently shares his expertise in workplace inclusion through public speaking and in writing for publications like HR Professional and IN Magazine. In 2019 Colin was the youngest person ever named a finalist for the Canadian LGBT+ Chamber of Commerce’s Business Leader of the Year Award. In 2020 he was named a CivicAction DiverseCity Fellow, joining a prestigious group of rising leaders who are passionate about shaping their communities within the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. A long time proponent of public service, Colin currently serves on the Board of Directors of Volunteer Toronto, Canada's largest volunteer centre with over 40 years of experience connecting volunteers with the organizations that need them. Originally from Cole Harbour, NS, he has lived in Toronto for over fifteen years, during which time he has consistently engaged with queer, trans and 2S communities through working and volunteering with organizations like The 519, the Inside Out Toronto LGBT Film & Video Festival and the Toronto People With AIDS Foundation. Connect with Colin on LinkedIn or email him at colin.druhan@prideatwork.ca

Florence Gagnon

Programming Assistant, Quebec

Portrait of Florence Gagnon
Florence Gagnon holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Concordia University. She has spent the last 10 years working to ‘spread the word’ and increase visibility for lesbians within and outside of the LGBTQ+ community. In 2012, she created a platform to provide a resource to lesbian communities, Lez Spread The Word, the first bilingual website of its kind in Canada. In 2014, she launched the FÉMININ / FÉMININ television series, with director Chloé Robichaud (Sarah Préfère la Course and Boudaries), who won two Gemini Awards in Quebec and several international prizes in 2015. In 2016, she published the first LSTW magazine, a 230-page bilingual annual magazine that stands out in stores across Canadian provinces, European capitals and major US cities. From Yellowknife to Vancouver, Berlin and Stockholm, up to MoMA PS1 in New York. She also was on the board of Pride Montreal and The LGBT Chamber of Commerce for many years. You can connect with Florence at florence.gagnon@prideatwork.ca regarding Pride at Work Canada's programming in the Quebec region.

Pru Girme

Administrative Coordinator

Pru Girme Portrait
Pru is a South Asian cultural manager and an artist based in Toronto. Her vision as a creative professional is to bring together the LGBTQ2+ community, people of color, and newcomers through meaningful engagement and persuasive dialogue. Her work is inspired by the relationship between her identity, community and equity. Pru has majored in business administration and holds a graduate degree in Art from UNSW, Australia. She is also the co-chair for the Friends of South Asia at the Royal Ontario Museum. In conjunction with her professional work, she is a film photographer and painter, and has exhibited her works across South Asia, Australia and Toronto. Previous to Pride at Work Canada, Pru held positions at Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation, Branksome Hall, Toronto International Film Festival and the Piramal Art Residency. Connect with Pru on LinkedIn or email her at pru.girme@prideatwork.ca.

Hazim Ismail

Programming Coordinator

Hazim is a Bugis-Malay, Chinese queer anthropology and discard studies scholar with an MA Anthropology and Collaborative Master’s Specialization in Contemporary East and Southeast Asian Studies from the University of Toronto, as well as a BA Honours in Anthropology from the University of Winnipeg and a Higher National Diploma in Business from Linton University. They currently serve on the Planned Parenthood Toronto (PPT) board of directors, and have served on the Sexuality Education Resource Centre (SERC) Manitoba board, as a 2SLBTQI+ Commissioner for Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) Manitoba, as Project Manager for Water Allies research team, and as a linguistics consultant for McGill University. Their work on decolonizing understandings of Southeast Asian gender conceptualizations has been presented at the International Conference on Gender Studies, at Thammasat University, University of Manitoba, Mental Health Commission of Canada, Canadian Museum for Human Rights, and Queen’s University among others. Their community advocacy focuses on newcomer, migrant, queer, gender nonconforming BIPOC intersections, melding their own experiences as a former refugee and stateless person with their academic, artistic and professional background. They are committed to providing spaces for non-hegemonic decolonial understandings and expressions of genders and sexualities to thrive.

Meike Jourdain

Programs Assistant, Education

Meike’s background is in gender and sexuality education, and she is a passionate believer in education as a key tool in the advocacy of LGBTQ2+ issues. Meike is committed to strengthening the connections between LGBTQ2+ community organizations, and has always prioritized collaboration with grassroots groups in the development of educational programming. As Pride at Work Canada’s Programs Assistant, Meike supports the organization’s educational and networking programs. Connect with Meike at meike.jourdain@prideatwork.ca.

Sandeep Nair

Manager of Business Operations

Sandeep holds a Bachelor degree in Communication and Journalism and a Diploma in 2D and 3D animation and graphic design. With over 12 years of work experience, Sandeep has worked as EDI - Programme Consultant and prior to that, worked for a communication agency. Experienced in project management and creative development, he worked on various projects ranging from websites, online communication to product packaging deliverables. With a core belief that everybody has a special responsibility for making a positive difference, Sandeep’s work focuses largely on creating an inclusive workplace environment for all, especially 2SLGBTQ+ community and people with disabilities. Sandeep has led programmes and campaigns, and provided training and consultancy services to drive the EDI strategy across various organisations in the Asian region. He has played a key role in developing three research publications, to achieve success in creating a safe and inclusive society. Sandeep is on the board of Nanaimo Pride Society and SIETAR BC (Society For Intercultural Education Research And Training). Connect with Sandeep on LinkedIn or email him at sandeep.nair@prideatwork.ca.

Luis Augusto Nobre

Marketing & Communications Coordinator

Luis Nobre Portrait
Luis has been working with social inclusion for over a decade. As Pride at Work Canada’s Marketing and Communications Coordinator, Luis is committed to raise awareness of LGBTQ2+ issues and to engage our stakeholders to celebrate gender and sexual diversity. His areas of expertise are corporate social responsibility, communications and human resources at multinational companies and non-profit sector. He specializes in strategic communication management, CSR, and project management. For the past years, he has been working on blended activities among Diversity & Inclusion, Corporate Social Responsibility, Communications, and Public Policies. Passionate and devoted, he advocates for human rights protection and volunteers to support minority communities, such as LGBTQ2+, indigenous, black people and people of colour communities. Connect with Luis on LinkedIn or email him at luis.nobre@prideatwork.ca.

Jade Pichette

Manager of Programs

Jade Pichette Portrait
Jade is an inclusion, diversity and belonging educator with a background in social work. As Pride at Work Canada’s Manager of Programs, Jade is committed to implementing engaging programs for our partners that envision a world where gender and sexual diversity are included and celebrated. Previous to Pride at Work Canada they have held positions at the ArQuives, Kind Space, and as an independent consultant. Jade is the Gythia (Ásatrú priestess) of Vindisir Kindred, and dedicates their time to interfaith engagement including founding the Canadian Pagan Declaration on Intolerance. Connect with Jade on LinkedIn or email them at jade.pichette@prideatwork.ca.  

BOARD

Inez Ashworth

Prairies Regional Lead

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Inez Ashworth is a Team Lead for Diversity & Inclusion at Husky Energy where she has worked for the past 6 years. She is extremely, passionate, dedicated and approachable with a great commitment to anything she sets out to do. Inez moved to Canada from the UK and quickly adapted to a new environment. She was promoted back into a leadership position within 12 months. Inez always leads by example and makes time to help others. She was instrumental in the launch of their LGBTQ2+ Network which is proving to be a huge success and is going to bring more diversity and inclusion to the company.  
Sharon Chung

Women's Strategy Lead

Sharon Chung Portrait
Sharon Chung champions Diversity and Inclusion and is passionate about the LGBTQ2+ community. She has held a variety of leadership roles at TD within the Retail Network, Call Centre operations, Diversity and Inclusion, and Talent Acquisition, including unique roles focused specifically on LGBTQ2+ people.  She currently leads the LGBTQ2+ talent strategy for the bank, where her primary focus is to source, attract and advocate for the hiring of top LGBTQ2+ talent Canada-wide.  She is also proud to lead the Diversity Talent Acquisition team who have a dedicated focus on their respective communities: People with Disabilities, Indigenous People, Visible Minorities and Women in Leadership.  Sharon is an active member of TD's LGBTQ2+ Employee Resource Group where she leads their Engaging LBT Women strategy and Talent strategy.   She feels extremely fortunate and considers it a privilege to have the opportunity to do the work that she does professionally and personally. You can connect with Sharon on LinkedIn.
Mathieu Desjardins

Co-Chair

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Mathieu Desjardins has been working in the field of information management and compliance for nearly a decade. He holds a BA in history from the Université du Québec à Montréal and a certificate in records management from the same institution. He has worked in the health sector and in the private sector in an accounting firm and is currently working for the Business Development Bank of Canada. He has been an active member of Pride at Work Canada for many years and has participated in organizing a multitude of events and initiatives. He is currently a member of BDC's LGBT Support Group, which supports the National Diversity Committee. He has also coached people with autism and developmental disorders and has assisted students with disabilities during his university studies.
Kathleen Devine

Secretary

Self-shot photo of Kathleen Devine
Kathleen Devine was born in Northern Ontario and earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Toronto. After graduation, Kathleen worked internationally for over 20 years in risk management and business continuity. Her diverse background in working with a variety of organizations and dealing with a wide spectrum of individuals has given Kathleen a wealth of experience applicable to the role of Secretary for Pride at Work Canada. Kathleen’s experience with launching LGBTQ2+ initiatives, networks, resources groups in Australia and Singapore has motivated her to extend her own path of activism in her workplace in Canada. I am committed to working together to foster inclusive corporate cultures where all employees are encouraged to be their truest selves at work. Connect with Kathleen on LinkedIn.
Trisha Egberts

Treasurer

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Trisha is a CPA, CA with a Bachelor of Commerce from Queen's University. As Treasurer on the Board of Directors, Trisha is committed to ensuring the long-term financial viability of Pride at Work Canada through strong internal controls and financial management, oversight, and reporting. Trisha currently works as the Director of Finance at ThinkData Works, a data technology company. Prior to this role, she worked with the teams at Figure 1, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, and PwC. Connect with Trisha on LinkedIn.
Terri Eklund

Prairies Regional Lead

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Terri is an educator and lifelong learner with more than 10 years of experience in higher education. In her current role as an educational developer with the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT), Terri supports teaching and learning in an applied environment and is passionate about cultivating inclusive classrooms. In 2017, she helped launch SAIT’s Gender and Sexuality Inclusion Committee and continues to serve as co-chair. Terri credits her work during her master’s degree (which coincided with a few major life events, just for added stress…) as what catapulted her down a path where inclusion is a guiding value in life and work. Her professional experience and commitment to discussing diverse topics has resulted in several workshops and speaking engagements, both on and off campus. Outside of the workplace, Terri is an avid reader, skilled movie-quoter and football fan. She’s excited to join Pride at Work Canada as one of the Prairies Regional Leads and looks forward to learning from and alongside the PAWC staff and board members. Connect with Terri on LinkedIn! Don’t worry — she promises not to share photos of her dog, unless you ask.
Angela Facundo

Director of Thought Leadership

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Angela Facundo is a scholar, artist, writer, and management consultant based in Toronto. With a PhD in English Literature and nine years of experience researching and teaching queer and gender studies, psychoanalysis, and culture, Angela has written a book on queer theory and the impact of art on inner life. For the past three years, she has been finding ways to bring her expertise in queer studies out of academia and into the “real world.” Now that she works for Logical Design Solutions, a US-based digital strategy company that builds employee experiences, Angela is passionate about helping people bring their best and whole selves to work. As Director of Thought Leadership, Angela is excited to work with others on creative ways to apply critical thinking for practical and potentially large-scale results.
Lauren Flynn

Atlantic Regional Lead

Lauren Flynn Portrait
Lauren is the Senior Manager of Digital Service at Johnson Inc.  She holds an MBA from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, and a BSc in Earth Sciences from Memorial University of Newfoundland. Lauren is an active member of her LGBTQ2+ employee resource group and runs annual Pride celebrations at Johnson’s head office. She is the vice-chair of Kittiwake Dance Theatre in Newfoundland, and has previously served on the board of directors for St. John’s Pride. Lauren is a champion for diversity and inclusion in the workplace, and is thrilled to join Pride at Work as an Atlantic Regional Lead. Connect with Lauren on LinkedIn.
Chris Forward

Co-Chair

Portrait of a man named Chris
Chris is a proud Newfoundlander, born and raised in St John's. His family operated a heating oil business for 53 years, which was eventuall sold to A. Harvey & Co. Ltd. Chris holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Memorial University of Newfoundland. Currently he is the General Manager of Harvey's Oil Ltd., a Petro Canada partnership that sells and distributes petroleum products throughout Newfoundland. Chris is a champion of health & safety in the workplace, and recently received an award presented by the NL Occupational Health and Safety Organization to honour his commitment to his co-workers and their well-being. Chris is a board member of Shallaway Youth Choir and is the past president of the Boys and Girls Club of St John’s. Under Chris’ leadership the two Boys and Girls clubs have grown to offer an open and inclusive environment, engaging nearly 800 youth.
Mark Lawton

National Marketing Lead

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Originally from Yorkshire in Northern England, Mark has over 14 years of international marketing experience gained at Wal-Mart UK & Coca-Cola Canada. He has a deep knowledge of Product, Brand and Customer marketing and prides himself on building strong & successful relationships. Mark’s passion for inclusive and progressive workplace’s first developed by being an active member of Wal-Mart UK’s LGBTQ network. He took this passion further by launching and leading Coca-Cola Canada’s LGBTQA Business Resource Group (BRG) from the summer of 2018 to the present day. Currently, Mark is the Customer Marketing Manager at Coca-Cola Canada, and he continually strives to expand his leadership skills & knowledge base, demonstrated by taking on this exciting position with Pride at Work Canada. Mark regularly keeps in touch with family in friends in the UK, as well as enjoying travel & social time with his partner of 10 years and new friendship group in Toronto.
Val Walls

Director of National Strategy

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Val brings 25 years of experience in sales, sales leadership and sales performance development across multiple industries: Distribution, Retail, Service Management, Technology and most recently Financial. Val is currently the Director, Sales Effectiveness at Scotiabank. As a certified coach, and transformational change agent, they focus on developing high-performance cultures through the process of structural alignment and competency development to model behaviors for a winning outcome.
Claire Yick

BC Regional Lead

Headshot of Claire Yick
Claire is passionate about supporting and mentoring those within the LGBTQ2+ community. She currently works as a senior policy analyst with the BC Public Service in Victoria. Claire obtained her Master in Environmental Studies and law degree (MES/JD) at York University and Osgoode Hall Law School. Prior to this, she completed undergraduate degrees in biology and environmental science. Claire has worked as a lawyer within the legal aid clinic system and well as in private practice. Claire has also served as executive member of the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Community (SOGIC) sections with both the Ontario Bar Association and the Canadian Bar Association. Claire’s hobbies include aerial yoga and trying out new escape rooms. Connect with Claire on LinkedIn or at claire.yick@prideatwork.ca.
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