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Meet Our Board

Carmen Allen, CHRP

Carmen is currently a Manager working in Employee Relations & Recruitment Services. She holds an MA Industrial Relations/Human Resources Management and is a Certified Human Resources Professional. Carmen is an active contributing member and advocate of the aims and objectives of The Redwood. Carmen has served on The Redwood Board of Directors for six years as the HR Lead providing critical advice and support to the ED and Board Chair on various HR policy, process and procedures.  Carmen has also supported the Board’s Governance and Succession Planning process and represented The Redwood as an ambassador for The Redwood at various charitable events to accept donations.

Sonya Bourgeois

Sonya Bourgeois is a policy professional with the Ontario Public Service, leading projects in the areas of violence against women, health policy, community and social service delivery, and gender-based policy and program development. She holds a Masters in Social Work from York University, and has published in the areas of women and HIV, and access to abortion in Canada. Early in her career, she worked as a fundraising professional in the areas of human rights, mental health, and community development. She is a former staff member of The Redwood and loves to ride her bicycle.

Nira Elgueta

Since moving from Chile and adopting Toronto as her hometown, Nira has been involved with the Latin American community in Toronto and beyond. Her projects have included: civic engagement, making art accessible to young people and equity and social justice issues. However, her passion has always been advocating for the rights of women and children fleeing violence. She has been involved with The Redwood for over 10 years supporting the organization in different capacities. As a member of The Redwood’s Board of Directors, she hopes to build a better world for women and children.

Amy Nhan

Amy was born in Brantford and moved to Toronto at young age with her mother and sister. Raised by a single mother, she always had strong women as role models, nurturing not only her passion to help others and pay it forward, but also to achieve ambitious goals to grow personally and professionally. She will graduate from Ryerson University in June 2017 with a Bachelors of Technology, where she majors in Graphic Communications Management and minors in Human Resources, along with an elective focus in overall Politics. At 22 years old, she has already progressively grown in her career managing an entire Production Department in a printing company. Amy’s goal is to be a champion for diversity in a predominantly male industry and concurrently be a role model to foster women to be their own champions and bring forth ideas to create a positive change in the industry.

Leah Odle-Benson

Leah is a social development specialist who is both passionate about gender equality and committed to supporting social justice and community-building.  Born in Barbados, Leah has spent the last six years working throughout the Caribbean on gender and development issues, including violence against women, leadership and empowerment, HIV and AIDS, and gender mainstreaming.  Leah holds an MA in International Communications and Development and is looking forward to supporting the work of The Redwood.

Komila Rakhimova

Komila is a passionate development professional and equality advocate with 10 years’ experience in policy, research, and project management on education, diversity, gender equality, women’s empowerment, gender mainstreaming and disability inclusion with public, private and not-for-profit sectors as well as international organizations in Canada, Eastern Europe, East Africa, and Central Asia. In her current position with Ontario Ministry of Education, she engages in policy analysis and policy development, plans and conducts research, studies and assessments and contributes to the development of program standards relating to teaching policy.

Malini Singh

With a background in social work, settlement, equity and advocacy, Malini has over 15 years’ experience in the not for profit sector.  Her dedication to sustainable and inclusive change for women and girls is guided by a strong anti-oppression feminist framework. Prior to moving to Toronto in 2006, Malini resided in Calgary and Winnipeg after emigrating from Guyana at a young age. She is committed to positive futures for families and looks forward to contributing to The Redwood’s vision and mandate.

Allyson Samuel, CPA, CMA

Allyson has been a CMA for over 20 years; she obtained CMA designation from the Society of Management Accountants of Ontario and holds a Bachelor of Administration degree from Lakehead University in Thunder Bay. Allyson is currently employed as the Senior Accountant at the Stephen Lewis Foundation where she reviews audited financial statements and reporting from partners in Sub-Saharan Africa. Previously, she was previously employed as the Accounting Manager at Verdiroc Development Corporation where she spent 12 years overseeing construction accounting and the day-to-day accounting functions of the organization. An avid basketball fan, Allyson is currently a treasurer and collective member of Rainbow Hoops, a recreational women’s basketball league providing a safe queer-positive space for players of all skill levels to enjoy the game of basketball. She previously volunteered as a financial representative at the United Way of Greater Toronto where she reviewed member agency submissions regarding continued and increased funding.

Interested in joining our board?