CES Canada Board
Board Director Profile
CES Canada Board: 2015
Alecia Chen grew up in Toronto, Canada. She now works in New York City specializing in International Law. She displays a strong interest in Human Rights for refugees and displaced people. Prior to entering law school Alecia studied International Relations at the University of Western Ontario. She coordinated a cultural student exchange program for Canadian youth and led English sessions for international students. Alecia has participated in student exchange programs to Spain, Costa Rica and Hong Kong. As a proponent of equal rights for all children she is dedicated to helping students experience personal growth through education. In 2002 Alecia received the award of Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal for her work in coordinating a Canadian youth cross-cultural and language program.
Susan and Dennis Freeman have a sustained interest in the development of youth and children. Among many philanthropic endeavors they have been long-term supporters of Muskoka Woods Sports Resort. They are founding supporters of All-A-Board Youth Ventures, a not-for-profit community economic development organization that provides employment training to at-risk youth in the City of Toronto. Born and raised in the City of Toronto, Susan began her career as an Executive Assistant at the Toronto Star, prior to staying home to raise four children. Dennis hails from Timmins, Ontario. As a Senior Executive at a leading investment management firm in the City of Toronto, Dennis has served as a mentor to young people at the outset of their professional careers. He continues to lead a team as he advises and manages the investments of individuals, insurance companies, credit unions, foundations, pensions, charities and other institutional clients. Susan and Dennis believe that education is fundamental to the transformation of the lives of youth in Africa.
Michael Frederiksen immigrated to Canada from Denmark in 1951. His career in education spans thirty-five years as teacher and administrator at the elementary, secondary and post secondary levels of education. He has served as chair of Phi Delta Kappa (U of Toronto) and the Toronto chapter of the Royal Commonwealth Society. He has worked on a number of international humanitarian and educational projects in Kenya, India, Pakistan and Grenada. In 2004 Michael was instrumental in founding CES Kenya and presently is a member of its board of directors. He is a strong advocate for children with disabilities, particularly those who suffer from polio and HIV/Aids.
Ken Froese is a chartered accountant specializing in investigative and forensic accounting. He practices in the area of fraud investigations and quantifying losses. He has testified as an expert witness in civil and criminal trials. Ken was a founding Director of the Association of Forensic Investigators of Canada, serving as the Association’s President for three terms. He was awarded its first “Fellow Certified Forensic Investigator”. Ken is a member of Kingsway Baptist Church, offering his talents teaching a grades 3-5 sunday school class. Ken has a strong interest in assisting children in their growth and development. He has an affinity and compassion for people who have been displaced and disadvantaged. His family originally fled from Russia, lived in a German refugee camp, and later emigrated to Canada.
Raymond Gallant was born in Hamilton, Ontario to immigrants of Polish and Ukrainian descent. Ray began his career in Business and Economics in the private sector with an accounting firm. His interests there included international markets and growth through commercial trade and development. Ray transferred his communication skills to secondary school and continuing education where he has served as a teacher and administrator of Business Studies for thirty years. His knowledge and interest in international education includes Hong Kong and the Pacific Rim. Ray has worked as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity, building homes for needy Canadian families from British Columbia to Ontario. He continues his interest in education by promoting the Guelph Lecture Series on “What it means to be a Canadian”.
Arthur (Art) Khaemba was raised in Kenya the son of a Kenyan diplomat. He moved with his family to the UAE, Belgium, and in 1998 arrived in Canada. Art’s cross cultural experiences have given him a unique perspective on the challenges faced by disadvantaged and displaced people. Art speaks of growing up in Kenya and seeing the high incidence of HIV/Aids, poverty and unemployment among youth living in Western Province. He formed an advocacy group in Kakamega to create greater awareness of the issues. His education combines a diploma program in Law Enforcement (Algonquin College) and he is certified as a Paralegal.
Diana Kuzmanovic was born in the former Yugoslavia, and moved to Canada with her family in 1990. She is currently pursuing a degree in International Business Administration at the Schulich School of Business, York University. Diana is a recipient of the Governor General’s Gold Medal and the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal. She has been active raising funds and community awareness for a number of local charities, including the Daily Bread Food Bank. In 2002, Diana coordinated a cultural exchange program for Canadian youth and later participated in a government roundtable discussion forum on Canada’s future. Diana believes that education is a true mechanism for change, and her mission is to help students in need to realize their full potential.
Charles Mayenga grew up in Kenya. Completing his studies at the University of Nairobi, he taught at Kericho High School, Siriba Teachers College and Moi University. As an immigrant to Canada, he also earned an M.Ed (Education Psychology) from the University of Manitoba and a PhD in Educational Assessment and Evaluation from the University of Toronto. Charles is an active past Chair of KCO – Kenyan Community of Ontario. As board member of the RCS Toronto Branch, he coordinated the Commonwealth International Essay Competition. Dr. Mayenga worked as a Senior Consultant at Assessment Strategies Inc. and previously with Ontario’s Education Quality and Accountability Office. In 2005 Charles was instrumental in helping to draft Project PREPARE, the work of CES Canada in Kenya. He joined the Board in 2008 as Regional Director in Ottawa. He represents CES within the diplomatic community, other NGO’s and a number of government agencies.
Leonard Wandili is an educator who was born in Western Kenya and currently lives in Brampton, Ontario. He has supported CES Canada since it was established and in 2009 he travelled to Kenya at the invitation of CES Kenya to explore ways to assist needy students in Western Province. He is the founding President of the Kenyan Community in Ontario (KCO) and is also the Vice President of Abeingo Association of Canada. Leonard is currently working as an administrator in the Continuing Education and extended learning programs of the Toronto District School Board. He is a strong advocate for the public education system both in Canada and in Kenya. He enjoys community volunteer activities, reading and traveling.
Patron CES Canada
Ron Ward is a dedicated educator and humanitarian who for the past four decades has been serving in Kenya. He has a critical knowledge and a broad understanding of the social, political and economic issues that affect northeast Africa. Ron has been involved in medical, agricultural and livestock projects in the north east province of Kenya. In the 1980s Ron built a medical facility in Garissa, NEP for victims of TB and HIV/Aids. In 2002 Ron initiated the establishment of a camel dairy herd which has provided an economic base for local Somalis. He currently spends six months of each year as Director of Toronto Baptist Intercultural Services. His outreach to the African community, especially to new immigrants and refugees has been recognized internationally.
Past Directors of CES Canada
Bernard Simon moved to Canada from South Africa in 1984. He is currently the Canada correspondent of the Financial Times. He has also written for, among others, The New York Times, The Economist and Canada’s Financial Post. From 1997-2001, he was deputy editor of Business Day in Johannesburg. Outside work, he enjoys reading and walking, and the volunteer work he does for a number of groups in Toronto. Bernard has travelled widely, including visits to several African countries. He holds dual Canadian and South African citizenship.
Catherine Gatere moved to Canada from Kenya in 1990. She currently works as a Health Promotion Officer at the Region of Peel Health Department. She is past treasurer of Health Promotion Ontario, a province-wide association of health promotion professionals. Catherine is interested in HIV/Aids, with a special interest in the African pandemic. She volunteers with the Philip Aziz Centre which provides hospice care in the Greater Toronto Area. She is currently pursuing a degree in nursing at York University. Catherine’s other interests include swimming, cycling and dragon boating. In 2005 she helped form Friends of the Kenyan Community in Ontario dragon boat team, “Team Unbwogable”, the first African team to be represented at the Toronto International Dragon Boat Race Festival.
Jane Snyder immigrated to Canada with her family in 1998. Jane is currently working with Price Waterhouse Coopers LLP in Toronto as Administrative Assistant in Human Resource Services – Tax and Legal Services group. Jane is currently pursuing professional certification in Human Resource Management at the University of Guelph. Jane is also currently serving on the executive board of the Kenyan Community in Ontario (KCO). Jane has helped form a (KCO) team to participate in the World Partnership Walk – an initiative of the Aga Khan foundation Canada. This awareness and fundraising campaign is part of a solution to eradicate global poverty. Jane is an avid reader, traveler, and enjoys outdoor recreation activities.
Niels Christensen immigrated to Canada from Wales with his family in 1966. He graduated from the Ontario Police College and served as a police officer with the Metropolitan Toronto Police Force. In 1986 Niels began a career in the private sector as Manager of the Investigations and Enforcement Branch of the Ontario Securities Commission. Niels is currently self employed as a residential real estate broker. He has served on the executive of Humber Valley Ratepayers Association, the Richview School Council and the 21 Division Community Police Liaison Committee. Niels has been honoured by the City of Toronto for leadership and community building. He holds dual British and Canadian citizenship.