Board of Directors

Leadership. Commitment. Vision.

A volunteer board of officers and directors—comprised of 12 business leaders from our community—provides governance for the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce. Board members typically serve a two-year term and are elected by the membership in March. Chamber members interested in serving on the board of directors in the future are encouraged to contact the current chairman of the board by email.


Kevin East, Chair
Kevin, owner of Ambassador Transportation Corp, brings to the team 20 years of sales and marketing experience which has provided him with great business and customer service expertise. Kevin has lived and worked in five of the Canadian provinces and brings understanding on a vision of tourism and the true value of what the Comox Valley has to offer to both locals and those from all across the country and world.

Kevin is a current member of Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce, He is also the Adult Leader for the Courtenay 3rd Beaver Colony. Kevin is married to Angie East and has two children Tayler (10) and Carson (8). Ambassador Transportation Corporation was recently awarded the 2012 small business of the year award through the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce and also the 2014 Vancouver Island Business of the Year (under 50 Employees).  

 

 


Mackenzie Gartside,Vice Chair

Mackenzie is the senior mortgage consultant on the Mackenzie Gartside & Associates team. She worked in banking for four years before transitioning to brokering in 2006.  With an energetic and determined personality, Mackenzie works diligently to get her clients the absolute best mortgage terms possible.

Volunteering and organizing charity events are one of Mackenzie’s passions. She has volunteered as a director on several boards and actively participates as a member of a multitude of business, community and charity organizations. As with any parent, one of her main drivers is her child. Mackenzie's daughter Payton has been a Type 1 Diabetic since she was two years old. Mackenzie spends many hours organizing and inventing fun and creative ways to fund-raise for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to aid in its quest to find a cure for Diabetes.

 


Donna CloutierDonna Cloutier, Treasurer

Donna was a meteorological technician for the Canadian Armed Forces and moved to the Comox Valley in 1990. While still in the military, she continued with her education in the accounting field at North Island College, obtaining her chartered accountant designation in 2000. Today, Donna is a partner at Cloutier Matthews LLP, and is one of the owners of The Joint Physiotherapy and Sports Injury Centre. She recently completed the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountant’s In-depth Tax Course, the most complete and comprehensive tax-training course available in Canada. Being a business owner and advisor, she understands the needs of local businesses and is committed to community building. Donna is currently serving as treasurer for the Vancouver Island Mountain Sports Society. In her spare time you will find her enjoying a number of recreation pursuits including: cross-country skiing, yoga, swimming, basketball and dancing with her husband, Edwin Betinol.

 

 

Andrew GowerAndrew Gower, Past Chair
Born and raised in BC, Andrew has lived and worked all across Canada and around the world, including stays in California and Ireland as a consulting engineer. Andrew spent the first 11 years of his professional life as an Army Engineer Officer, which included attending both College Militaire Royal in St. Jean Quebec, and Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston Ontario. As an officer, Andrew was posted to both combat and support units in BC and Alberta. After retiring from the Military in 2002, Andrew started a second career as a consulting engineer, and has worked on major bridge projects, highways projects, land development, and municipal infrastructure. Andrew arrived in the Comox Valley in 2007, opening the Courtenay branch of Wedler Engineering in January of that year, and has kept the business growing steadily over the last eight years. The Wedler Courtenay office provides services on projects throughout western Canada including all of the Prairie provinces, the North West Territories and the BC Coast and islands.

Outside of his engineering career, Andrew has been a professional musician and a semi-professional sports journalist. Andrew also co-founded Imagine Comox Valley, a non-profit organization that has brought both Car Free Sunday and TEDx to the Comox Valley. Andrew also volunteers at adventure sports events including the BC Bike Race, MOMAR and UROC races.  Andrew is a founding co-producer of Elevate the Arts, and recently became the Production Manager for the Atmosphere music festival in Courtenay.

 


Chrissie Bowker, Director

Prior to her appointment as Publisher of the Comox Valley Record, Chrissie was working with Kwantlen Polytechnic University as director of development. In her role as director of development, Chrissie managed KPU’s major giving programs, including overseeing program goals and implementing university-wide priorities. Chrissie created several new partnerships at the university and is proud to be a part of the team who saw the 2014 awards ceremony, hosted by the KPU Foundation, as the biggest awards night in the university’s 31-year history, with the most dollars donated and awards received.

Chrissie previously served as publisher of the South Delta Leader for six years and was deeply involved in the fabric of the Delta community. Under her leadership, the paper enjoyed considerable success and built strong ties with the community. Bowker has also served on Delta’s Business Improvement Association board, Peninsula Community Foundation board, Delta Tourism committee, Delta Chamber of Commerce committee for the Chamber’s annual awards gala, and Chaired Project Bloom, an annual fundraiser in support of International Women’s Day.

 

Randall Heidt, Director
Randall Heidt has served on several boards and community organizations, including as a vice-president, treasurer and director on the Prince George Chamber of Commerce for several years. As VPSI at NIC, Randall is responsible for several areas including: Applied Research, Continuing Education and Industry Training, Marketing, Communications, Fundraising, Business Development, Alumni and Community Relations.  

Randall has earned volunteer of the year awards with the Prince George Youth Soccer Association and the Prince George Minor Hockey Association before moving to the Comox Valley in November 2014 with his wife and two children. He is currently an Assistant Coach with the Comox Valley United Soccer Club. 

Randall has a bachelor of communications degree and a master’s degree in leadership and more than 20 years of media experience.

 

Adil Amlani, Director

Over the past nine years, Adil Amlani, alongside brother Adam, has worked continuously to ensure that Sure Copy is the go-to destination for the Comox Valley’s design, print and web needs. Making the Comox Valley a better place is Adil’s passion. He has worked tirelessly to develop and promote cultural events and initiatives including the Big Timeout, Community Way Currency, World Community Film Fest, VI Music Fest, Elevate the Arts, and the BC Seniors Games to name a few.  


Making the Comox Valley a better place is Adil’s passion. He has worked tirelessly to develop and promote cultural events and initiatives including the Big Timeout, Community Way Currency, World Community Film Fest, VI Music Fest, Elevate the Arts, and the BC Seniors Games to name a few.  Adil currently serves as President for the BNI (business networking international) Olympic Gold Chapter, working with other local entrepreneurs to maximize their exposure and potential in the community.

 


LCol R.G. (Glenn) Watters, Director

Lieutenant-Colonel Glenn Watters was appointed to the Chamber's Board of Directors for a one year term. He joined the Canadian Armed Forces in 1987 as a Logistics Officer after graduating from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia with a Bachelor of Commerce degree. He has held a variety of logistics positions with the Royal Canadian Air Force across Canada and is currently the Administration Officer at 19 Wing Comox. On the Board, he represents over 1700 military and civilian staff at 19 Wing Comox. The personnel at 19 Wing Comox remain very active in the Comox Valley community and the Wing is pleased to have the opportunity to contribute to the Board of Directors for the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce.

 


 
 Linda Thomas, Director

Linda moved to the Valley in 2007, and has loved every minute of living on Vancouver Island.  Linda is the Promotions Director for 97.3 The Eagle, and in this role has the opportunity to work with many businesses and non-profit organizations in the Valley and Campbell River.  Prior to working at 97.3 The Eagle, Linda worked with other non-profit groups including the Comox Military Family Resource Centre, Canadian Cancer Society, and The Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Vancouver Island.  A mom of four girls, she finds herself very active in the community whether it be through her kids or through her own volunteer work. Her passion is to do all that she can to make a difference in her community and work with non-profit groups.  Linda spends her spare time volunteering as a RCMP Auxiliary Member and sitting on the Comox Valley Crime Stoppers Board.  

 

 Tricia St. Pierre, Director
Tricia St. Pierre has been a resident of the Comox Valley since 1990.  She worked as an Intensive Care Nurse at the provincial Spinal Cord Injury Unit in Vancouver before marrying Ronald St. Pierre and moving to the Comox Valley in 1990.  They had both their children at  St. Joseph’s Hospital, where Tricia was a Nurse Manager for 12 years. In 2003 she became a Nurse Educator at the North Island College.  In 2008 they opened Locals- Food from the Heart of the Island.  As they had increased their staff from 17 to 55, Tricia retired from NIC to focus her energies on their thriving business. Her years of nursing management and education, as well as her serving experience, prepared her well for the Human Resource responsibilities of managing a busy restaurant.

Locals’ enjoys very low staff turnover as Tricia and Ronald are passionate about ensuring a quality work environment for all employees.  Tricia is especially sensitive to the interests of vulnerable people. Having grown up with a sister with special needs, she does not have a competitive nature, but works well with others in trying to achieve favorable outcomes for all.  Life experience has taught Tricia that she does not need to know all the answers, but must learn how to ask the important questions.

 


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