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Welcome Back Family Feast 2018

PLAUS, Francis Xavier Nov. 25, 1939 – Sept. 5, 2018

What a great tradition! Families, volunteers, staff, and other supporters getting together to celebrate belonging, renew friendships, and build new relationships!

On September 7, 2018, we welcomed newcomers, and remembered Xavier Plaus, a long-time supporter and father of member Jalynn Plaus, who passed away on September 5. “X” was famous for his sense of humour, and he touched many lives, as evidenced by the many friends and colleagues who have reached out on our Facebook page, be they from the Roberts/Smart Centre, his peers and students of Taekwondo, or one of his other many personal and professional endeavors.

Board member Kari Whatley hosted a brief staff recognition ceremony that established a new tradition of awarding years of service pins to full-time staff. There was also a special sneak preview of our new Just Enough Support videos, starring Jalynn, Tim Siebrasse, Heather McAdam, Phil Landreville, and Ali Wilcox! Stay tuned for a full release in the days to come.

We have provided the text from the staff recognition ceremony, as well as some images in the photo blog below. Click on any of the images and you will be taken to a full photo album of the entire event!


Hello, I’m Kari Whatley, a current board member and former staff member at LiveWorkPlay. Now that we have moved the Annual General Meeting to June, it is my pleasure to host the staff recognition ceremony here at the Welcome Back Family Feast.

Before we get started with the full-time staff recognition ceremony, I want to welcome Liam Pignat, a placement student from Carleton University who has just started, and I also want to thank our current part-time staff members, which includes Emily Phan who started in September 2017, Sophia Bouzrara who started in October 2017, and last but not least, Jennifer Cunningham who has served in various part-time capacities since September of 2008, that’s ten years! Emily and Sophia could not be with us tonight, but please join me to thank Liam, Emily, Sophia, and Jennifer!

And now on to our recognition ceremony for members of the full-time staff team. Today we are starting a new tradition, and also playing catch-up, in the awarding of ceremonial years of service pins. These bee pins recognize current staff with service of up to 5 years, and then special pins are awarded to recognize every 5-year milestone from that time on. This year everyone receives a pin corresponding to their current milestone status, and in the years that follow, we will present new pins to those who move into a new category.

OK, here we go! First up:

Tammy Whelan, Employment Team Lead, June 2018
Carolyn Mills, Life Coach and Community Connector, May 2018
Kelly Fox, Job Connector, April 2018
Laura Lobay, Job Connector, April 2018
Ron Kok, Life Coach and Community Connector, April 2018, Ron is on holiday this week

Let’s hear it for Tammy, Carolyn, Kelly, Laura, and Ron!

Ready for our next group? These six all have between 1 and 2 years of service. First up:

Celine Bussiere, Job Connector and former Community Connector, she’s had two separate stints on the staff team, which we’ve pro-rated to September 2017.

Chris Floyd, Life Coach and Community Connector, August 2017.
Batoul Auf, Life Coach and Community Connector, May 2017, Batoul could not be here tonight
Joshua Gray, Job Connector, April 2017
Anna Nelson, Employment Supports Team Lead, February 2017
Alastair McAlastair Ghartey, Job Connector, November 2016

Let’s hear it for Celine, Chris, Batoul, Joshua, Alastair, and Anna!

Our next group of six have between 2 and 9 years of service. First up:

Rebecca Coxon, Life Coach and Community Connector, she’s had two separate stints on the staff team, which we’ve pro-rated to September 2016

Shayna Gray, Life Coach and Community Connector, June 2016
Roberta McKenna, Lie Coach and Community Connector, May 2016
Wendy MacEwan, Life Coach and Community Connector, March 2016
Lou Hawkins, Life Coach and Community Connector, September 2015, currently on maternity leave
Alex Darling, People Connector and Volunteer Coordinator, October 2012, Alex is on holidays
Anthony Stratton, Life Coach and Community Connector, March 2009

Let’s hear it for Rebecca, Shayna, Roberta, Wendy, Lou, Alex, and Anthony!

Last but not least, our last group of six have between 10 and 25 years of service! First up:

Allison Moores, Team Lead and Support Coordinator, June 2008
Daniel Harris, Life Coach and Community Connector, January 2008
Jen Soucy, Employment Team Lead, May 2005
Grace Hudson, Community Connector Team Lead, September 2005
Julie Kingstone, Co-Leader and Director of Operations, August 1997
Keenan Wellar, Co-Leader and Director of Communications, July 1997

Let’s hear it for Allison, Daniel, Jen, Grace, Julie and Keenan!

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