Board of Trustees

Looking for a cause that matters? We’re currently recruiting for our Board of Trustees. More info here.

Mary Pat has held a range of executive-level communications positions through her +25-year career including: Vice-President, Communications, Alberta Innovates-Technology Futures; Branch Manager, Corporate Communications, City of Edmonton; and Director, Communications TELUS Corporation. A University of Alberta grad with a Master of Arts in Communications Technology, Mary Pat is a Past President of the University of Alberta Alumni Association and a former member of U of A’s Board of Governors and Senate. She has chaired and participated on countless committees for a wide range of organizations including Chrysalis.

Mike is an experienced real estate professional, an educated business leader, and an involved corporate citizen. As Senior Vice President, Qualico Properties, Mike oversees the investment, development, leasing, property management and asset management of all Qualico income-producing properties in Canada and the United States. Mike is able to execute at a high level by being able to grow and foster trusted relationships by conducting himself with the utmost in integrity and transparency. Mike is involved in various community boards and not-for-profits. While away from the office, Mike loves spending time outdoors, is an avid cyclist, and enjoys alpine skiing.

As the recently retired CEO of the Alberta College and Association of Chiropractors (ACAC) Deb Manz, has a strong background in executive management and strategic leadership. Community involvement includes 11 years with the Board of the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation (including Chair for three years), former Board member of the Telus World of Science Edmonton, and a current member on the Boards of Habitat for Humanity Edmonton and the Mental Health Foundation. Deb is also a member of the Glenora Rotary Club.

Jeff currently works as the Vice President Business Development with Horizon North where he focuses on managing executive relationships within key strategic client accounts.

Prior to joining Horizon North, Jeff was the co-founder of Empire Camp Equipment Ltd. (Empire), a Western Canadian focused provider of camp and wellsite buildings. At Empire, Jeff managed all day to day dealings including business development, customer relationships and operations.

Gord Gilroy was born, raised and educated in Edmonton. He graduated from the University of Alberta in 1986 with a degree in Business. From there he founded Vision Creative in 1987 and operates it today with two business partners and 10 employees. Gord is currently a member of the UofA Senate. Previous board commitments include Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, Habitat for Humanity, Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation, the Art Gallery of Alberta and the Glenora Rotary Club. Gord has been married to his wife Angie since 1996 and together they have two adult kids – Jack and Grace. In his spare time he enjoys hiking / skiing the Canadian Rockies, travel abroad and art in its various forms.

DeAnn is a senior health care leader with over 15 years’ experience in health care strategy and operations. DeAnn has spent most of her career working in health care governance and strategy and is now using that experience and knowledge to improve mental health care operations as a Director at Addiction and Mental Health Edmonton Zone. She is passionate about mental health, community development and health care excellence. DeAnn is a community connector and currently serves as Board Chair for Boys’ & Girls’ Clubs Big Brothers Big Sisters in Edmonton and is a Board member on the Mental Health Foundation. DeAnn holds an undergraduate degree in Law and a MBA in executive leadership. In her spare time, DeAnn can be found on the soccer field, running in the river valley or swimming.

Angy has 20+ yrs in the financial sector including roles in Financial Planning, Branch Management, Regional Office, and Vice-President Commercial Markets. She is currently National Director for Practice Management with RBC. Angy and her spouse Phil Nelson enjoy hiking the Alberta trails, cross fit, and running, and spending time with their dogs. Angy holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Dalhousie University, Hons. BA in Political Science from University of Calgary, and a Financial Planning designation.

Anita is a partner at the law firm Ackroyd LLP and practices in the area of corporate commercial law with a focus on advising Indigenous communities on corporate governance matters, joint venture and partnership agreements, trusts and financing. In her spare time, Anita is an avid runner and has run a number of marathons including the New York Marathon and the Los Angeles Marathon.

Mark is the Executive Director for Addiction and Mental Health in the Edmonton Zone with AHS. In this role, he provides administrative leadership over service-delivery and planning for specialized inpatient and community-based addiction and mental health services for children, adolescents, youth, adults and seniors. Prior to accepting formalized leadership roles, his clinical background was in psychiatric pharmacy practice with specialized focus on acute adult mental health, forensic psychiatry and geriatric psychiatry. He is also an Adjunct Clinical Professor with the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Alberta and has broad teaching experience in the Faculties of Pharmacy, Medicine, Nursing and Rehabilitation. His research interests include psychopharmacology outcomes research, interdisciplinary models-of-care and evidence-informed treatment for clients with concurrent disorders.

Mental Health Foundation Staff

Deborah is a fundraising professional with more than 15 years of fund development leadership experience and a track record of raising more than $30M. Deb stepped up to her role as MHF’s President & CEO after formerly serving as Vice-President, Philanthropy at Covenant Foundation Edmonton. She has also served as: Director, Fund Development, YWCA, Edmonton; Director, Children’s Miracle Network & National Partnerships, Sick Kids Foundation, Toronto; and Senior Manager Annual Fundraising Programs/Children’s Miracle Network, Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation. She is also a board member for YMCA Edmonton Foundation. In her spare time, Deb loves to cook and hang out with her husband and dogs.

Serving as the new Director of Communications, Rolando has decades of experience in communications, project management, and leadership roles. As an communications and engagement specialist, an entrepreneur, and a nonprofit leader, Rolando has received numerous recognitions and honours for his work and volunteerism. He is driven by contribution and creating dynamic teams full of fun and growth opportunities.

Over 25 years, he has also gained experience developing business strategies, operationalizing plans, as well as with outcome and performance evaluations. Rolando was also responsible for developing an engagement framework for 40,000+ Métis citizens across Alberta, and grown a start-up to 20 staff and $1.5M in revenue within its first year. He has drafted and implemented internal and external communications strategies, created procedures and policies, and has been the key contact on several initiatives receiving national media attention.

Rolando believes in servant leadership, building on strengths, and is an avid volunteer. He currently sits on the board of directors for the Business Link board and the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC). Rolando and his partner, Nicole, are eager to start their inaugural summer of RVing throughout Alberta!

Shelley is an accomplished self-starter with a strong background in the nonprofit and finance sectors. Working remotely from Ontario, Shelley gained her extensive experience in data management and event coordination at the Grand River Hospital Foundation, following a tenure with the Bank of Montreal. Shelley volunteers making and providing hot meals for vulnerable people, as a social media manager for a nationwide prostate cancer non-profit, and is on the Finance Committee as an advisor at her church. In her spare time, Shelley enjoys hiking and camping in Ontario, and beyond.

Geoff has a bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Victoria and brings a wealth of leadership experience to the foundation. He is a very proud father and husband. Although he spent 13 year in Victoria, he was born in Edmonton. Geoff has always been a strong advocate for others, a coach, a mentor, and most of all a firm believer in Community. With his passion for the cause, , his formal education, and over 15 years of successful team leadership, it is his goal to bring more awareness and support for Mental Health and Addictions across Alberta.

Geoff’s personal and professional connections across Alberta will prove to be a great addition as the Philanthropy team lead. He will be developing new methods to be involved in communities and will work with both government and private individuals to help build lasting change. He is ready to roll up his sleeves and get into the trenches with all of us to reach our collective goals.

Erin joined the Foundation in February 2022, as an Executive Assistant and Grants Administrator. She is an experienced Executive Assistant and Board Secretary, with a background in a variety of industries, including non-profits – most recently with the University Hospital Foundation.

She is excited to join a team of passionate individuals making a difference in the lives of Albertans. Erin lives in Sherwood Park with her partner and dog, Birdie. She enjoys running, spinning, and travelling.

Amanda has spent nearly ten years working in philanthropy. From Bust a Move at the Alberta Cancer Foundation, to Uniquely Me for the Edmonton Down Syndrome Society, and everything in between, she has extensive expertise in fundraising through events, donor engagement, and fun! Her passion for donor experience is the thread the binds her work at the Mental Health Foundation in Annual Giving, Cause Marketing, Stewardship, Events, and Legacy Giving. Outside of work, you can find her teaching yoga, hiking in the mountains with her husband and bernedoodle, and baking sweet treats.

Amber is looking forward to a future where we can all acknowledge mental health and addictions in a progressive and destigmatized manner. Amber has a Bachelor’s Degree with a major in International Studies, and a minor in Anthropology. Having spent most of her time learning about people and their roles in society, she pursued a person-centered career in client relations. Amber spent several years working with families at Kids Uncomplicated; she thoroughly enjoyed bringing innovation to the disability sector.

Amber also spent some time interning with the John Humphrey Centre for Peace and Human Rights. Her volunteer time provided her great insight to the collective efforts needed to help our communities prosper. She is eager to learn more about our donor community and the mental health needs of Albertans. The Mental Health Foundation is setup for success, and she is excited to join a team of passionate and dedicated individuals. In Amber’s spare time you will find her exploring the outdoors with her family, swimming laps at the pool, cooking vegetarian food, and chasing after a mischievous dog.