Stéphan is the founding executive director of the Centre and vice-president of the Habitat International Coalition. Previously, he was president of the Canadian Housing and Renewal Association (CHRA) and executive director of the Réseau québécois des OSBL d’habitation (Québec Non-Profit Housing Network). He was also a member of CHRA’s Urban, Rural and Northern Indigenous working group. Over the last 30 years, Stéphan has gained valuable insights in Canada, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East as a leader, manager, organizer, developer, researcher, analyst, academic and as an advisor for local, regional and national non-profit organizations. He’s been involved in the policy-making process at all levels of government. Stéphan has actively contributed to the development of thousands of new housing units and played key roles in strategies to restructure NPOs, big and small, facing significant challenges. He has postgraduate degrees in both law and political science.
Marie, who is the Centre’s director of operations, obtained a university degree in economics and has substantial management experience in the para-public, community and private sectors. She also worked for several years in economic development projects in the Eastern Townships region of Québec.
Marie’s expertise in human-resources management and the allocation of funds blossomed while she contributed to the establishment and development of community and social-innovation projects related to early childhood and young adults. She also contributed to a regional public transport development project for several years. Recognized as a democratic leader, she knows how to rally the members of a team, bring out new concepts and ideas, and structure them to achieve the expected results.
Deputy executive director
Lisa, the executive director of Ottawa Salus from 2010 to 2020, was also a member of the city of Ottawa’s Housing System Working Group and a former vice-chair of the Ottawa Alliance to End Homelessness. A former board member of the Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association, she has also worked in the government and community-based sectors for over 30 years, including in the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services and Toronto Community Housing Corporation. In addition to her Master’s in Public Administration from Queen’s University, Lisa is a certified Change Management Practitioner.
Among her many volunteer contributions, Lisa worked with the Toronto Rape Crisis Centre and Anishnawbe Health’s Street Patrol. More recently, she provided palliative care support at La maison Mathieu-Froment-Savoie.
Pete brings more than 30 years of journalism experience, including 12 at the Montreal Gazette, to the Centre communications team. As a writer, editor, columnist and French-to-English translator, he has helped cover everything from the 9/11 terror attacks to the Montréal Just For Laughs festival. He is well known for his sharp pen and even sharper wit. He is also a volunteer patient-partner in the regional health authority affiliated with the renowned Jewish General Hospital. The Centre lured him out of semi-retirement with the promise of his own TikTok account.
Andréanne worked as a journalist at two Montréal dailies (Metro, Le Devoir) for nearly eight years. She holds a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and a certificate in journalism from the Université de Montréal, in addition to a master’s degree in urban studies from l’Institut national de la recherche scientifique, during which she studied community greening projects in Montréal. For more than fifteen years, Andréanne has been a keen observer of social and urban issues, from housing to the environment, including citizen participation, inequality and urban planning. Joining the Centre is a natural progression of Andréanne’s civic involvement.
Jeanne is a copywriter and translator based in Tiohtià:ke (Montréal). She is a communications manager at the Centre in charge of Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples. She studied psychology at Dawson College, and holds a liberal arts BA from Thomas More Institute accredited by Bishop University. Curious by nature, she has travelled extensively and has called Korea, Thailand, Senegal and Poland home. Jeanne has dabbled in theatre, teaching, creative writing, education and prevention, and food sovereignty and has collaborated with major brands and organizations like Alternatives, Head & Hands, AIDS Community Care Montréal, Google, AdMind, Reitmans, and Bentley. Her love for the non-profit sector and a quest for meaningful work led her to The Centre.
A graduate of Pantheon-Sorbonne University in law and art history, Solange moved to Québec as part of an international exchange program for a master’s degree in order to study modern architecture at the Université du Québec à Montréal’s design school. By 2012, she decided to make Québec her home. Solange joined the Avenir d’enfants (Children’s Future) team in 2013 and worked for several years in various departments of the non-profit organization. Experienced in the analysis and evaluation of projects for potential funding, Solange has worked at the Centre since Day One. Her knowledge and experience contributed to the rapid set-up of the Centre during its hectic launch period. Her work at the Centre is a perfect match for her abiding interest in innovation and social justice.
Webmaster and graphic designer
Sabine studied journalism and communications at Concordia University and graduated from the School of Community and Public Affairs in Montréal. Co-founder of Katasoho Design & Printing, Sabine has over 20 years of experience working in communications, design and the community media sector. Sabine is passionate about social justice issues and has an unwavering resolve to participate in movements that create positive change. She is so excited and feels very privileged to be practicing her profession at the Centre.
After graduating from the University of Geneva with a bachelor’s degree in International Relations, Susanne worked for swisspeace, an institute dedicated to advancing effective peacebuilding. In particular, she participated in the implementation of training courses aimed at transferring theoretical knowledge to practitioners working in the field. Susanne recently completed her Master’s degree in History at McGill University. Her research focused on the recollection of slavery in Québec. She would now like to put her insights on social justice to good use through her commitment to facilitating access to affordable housing.
After first becoming interested in public policy and community ownership as an economics student, Lou worked as an organizer for a U.S. non-profit that helped small farmers advocate for national policy change. Lou’s graduate research in Urban Planning at McGill University focused on housing affordability, and her work at McGill’s Urban Politics and Governance research group allowed her to specialize in big data and spatial analysis. As database manager at the Centre, Lou is thrilled to use her experience in housing research to support the community-housing sector and promote access to affordable housing for all.
Brian is the program manager for British Columbia. Having grown up in a single parent household, he learned from a young age the value and necessity of housing as a human right, and how it acts as a pillar for community strength, safety, and stability.
Over the last 10 years, Brian has devoted his career to furthering the expansion of the community-housing sector in B.C. and Canada. Most recently, he spent seven years with the BC Non-Profit Housing Association contributing to research, policy and to advocacy initiatives aimed at strengthening the sector. He is excited to bring his passion for community housing to the Centre, and see the sector grow to become a substantial and foundational piece of Canada’s housing system. Brian holds a master’s degree in Urban Studies from Simon Fraser University.
Chrissy has worked in the non-profit sector for more than 10 years in both front-line and leadership positions. In her previous roles, Chrissy’s experience was largely in community work and popular education with immigrant populations and marginalized communities. More specifically, she managed a department in a community centre offering diverse programs and services for adults, coordinated employability programs and provided training and developed pedagogical materials. As a program manager at the Centre, Chrissy brings her passion about community development and social justice to the job. She specializes in tenant and co-op member engagement and social inclusion, with special responsibility for housing in Nunavut, the Northwest Territories and the Yukon. She holds a master’s degree in sociology and has lived and worked in Montréal, Toronto and Santiago, Chile.
Hope has 15 years of community service experience. Her interest in community housing began when she worked with refugees and continued throughout her career, working with diverse populations in St. John’s, NL., and Vancouver. In 2017, Hope was elected to St. John’s city council, becoming the second-youngest person to earn a seat on council. She is an expert on advising on affordable housing, accessibility and inclusion, and she introduced the city’s first harm-reduction programs. Hope brings to the Centre her knowledge of community mobilization—her passion—with a continued focus on creative solutions.
Luc is program manager for the Centre’s Sectoral Transformation Fund. A Public Administration graduate, he has devoted himself since the Centre’s founding to improving the support offered to the community-housing sector. He’s well known for his ability to meet challenges and to connect with people. Luc’s involvement in the sector began with the Réseau québécois des OSBL d’habitation, where he developed partnerships and helped ensure the continuity of community-housing activities in Quebec regions that were struggling.
He is also involved as a volunteer in organizations that work with homeless seniors in Montreal and funding affordable student housing.
Renée is a program manager for the Maritimes. She started her career with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Moncton, initially hired in service delivery and eventually took on the executive director position. In 2006, Renée was hired by Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada as the regional executive director for the Atlantic and Québec. Renée eventually took on the role of national director, quality assurance & effectiveness, responsible for the implementation and development of the National Accreditation Program and Standards.
Renée has volunteered for Imagine Canada for many years, first as a peer reviewer and currently as a member of the Imagine Canada Standards Council. Renée holds a degree in child study from Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, and lives in Moncton. She is fluently bilingual.
Scott Stager Piatkowski
Scott brings over 30 years of experience in managing non-profit housing co-operatives. As a volunteer, he has served as the vice-president of the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada and as a facilitator with the Co-operative Young Leaders program. In 2018, Scott was honoured to have been chosen by voters as a Trustee to represent them on the Waterloo Region District School Board. In 2020, he became vice-chair of the board, and in 2021 he was named chair. He has an Honours Bachelor of Arts (History) from Wilfrid Laurier University and a certificate in Co-op Management from the Schulich School of Business. Scott is excited to be working for the Centre, which allows him to exercise his passion for affordable housing and social justice.
Chris has been working in the housing sector for well over a decade, first as a home renovator and then in the non-profit sector as a coordinator of housing and resource support. A graduate of the University of Winnipeg in Anthropology and Religious Studies, Chris loves working to support and foster strong communities.
Chris has promoted integrated independent living for individuals living with physical disabilities since 2010. He has also been involved in social housing through the Manitoba Non-Profit Housing Association and has participated in task force, committee, and research endeavors with the Canadian Centre on Disability Studies, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and Barrier-Free Manitoba. Since joining the Centre as a program manager in 2020, Chris has overseen the Prairie provinces and also serves as a Regional Energy Coach for the region.