Our Team

Society of Organized Services

Board of Directors

The SOS Board of Directors is responsible for the governance of SOS. All of the Board members are volunteers, and are elected by the membership at the Annual General Meeting.
The SOS Leadership team below includes the Board of Directors and the Executive Director.

Dr. Jennifer Mullett

CHAIR

Dr. Jennifer Mullett is a Community Psychologist, Director of the Centre for Healthy Communities Research and Adjunct Professor at both UVic and VIU. She has worked abroad and in BC with inter-disciplinary teams on interventions aimed at creating healthy communities and building capacity for social change. She and her husband moved to Oceanside in 2008 and have two daughters and four grandchildren. Jennifer has been serving on the SOS Board since 2016.
Paul Ruffell

VICE CHAIR

Paul Ruffell was born and raised in the United Kingdom, where he received his engineering degree. He came to Canada in 1981 and worked in the Arctic for a decade. He became president and CEO of an Engineering Consulting firm based in Western Canada and eventually led an Infrastructure group with 3,500 staff across Canada. He has served on several not-for-profit boards. Paul moved to Qualicum Beach in 2015 and lives there with his wife Christine, who also volunteers for SOS. He was elected to the SOS Board in 2017.
Martin Fereday

PAST CHAIR, DIRECTOR

Martin moved to Parksville in 2011 with his wife Chris. He has been volunteering with SOS in the Income Tax program since 2014, and he has also volunteered with the City of Parksville and with the Parksville Lawn Bowling Club. He has two sons and six grandchildren. Martin enjoyed a career in municipal engineering and land development prior to retiring in 2010. He was elected to the SOS Board in 2016.

Brandon Charlesworth

DIRECTOR

Brandon was raised in the Comox Valley and completed his Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) – Accounting Concentration in Nanaimo. He moved to Vancouver to continue his career, completing his Certified General Accountant (CGA) designation there. He and his wife Marni moved back to Vancouver Island in 2016 and Brandon became a partner at Robbins & Company, CPA’s. Outside of work, Brandon enjoys spending time outdoors with Marni and their son Nolan. He is an active member of the Rotary Club of Nanaimo Oceanside, and is thrilled to be working with SOS to continue serving our community. Brandon was elected to the Board in 2021.

Mike Cochrane

DIRECTOR

Mike was born in Powell River and completed grade school in Port Alberni. He moved to Ontario to attend university and worked in the grocery industry. He opened New Leaf Whole Foods in Parksville in 1980 and started a family, having a girl and two boys. He was on the Oceanside Youth Soccer Board where he was president from 1996 to 2014. He was also on the Baseball Board and co-founded the District 69 Sports Council. His aunt (SOS co-founder Edith Chamberlayne) convinced him to join the SOS Board in 1986 which he continued with for 10 years. Mike closed his food store in 2014 and now works in renovation and home maintenance. He enjoys spending time with his two grandchildren and his family.
Jo Dunn
DIRECTOR
Jo was born and raised in Saanich BC, near Victoria. He studied economics and finance at the University of Victoria, and once graduated, he joined BC Tel. Throughout his 35-year career with BC Tel, Jo volunteered for a variety of organizations primarily focused on youth and poverty. He has volunteered for several local organizations, including President/Director at Large of Forward House Community Society, Shorewood/San Pareil Rate Payer’s Association, Knox United Church programs, and as a member of the Rotary Club of Parksville A.M. He has three daughters and eight grandchildren. Jo was elected to the SOS Board in June, 2019.

Dawn House

DIRECTOR

Several decades ago, Dawn lived in Errington and managed a Children’s Summer Day Camp at the Errington Hall. She returned to the area in 2017 with her husband and both of their mothers. In the intervening period, she practiced law in Smithers, and in Victoria for the Ministry of the Attorney General. Dawn has served on several boards including the Oak Bay Police Board and the South Vancouver Island Family Planning Society. She volunteers as a public member on the Quality Assurance Committee of the College of Occupational Therapists and as an Ad-Hoc member of the Strategy, Vison and Values Committee at SOS. Dawn has also recently become the President of the Mount Arrowsmith Rhododendron Society. Dawn looks forward to continuing her work with SOS in serving our community. She was elected to the Board in 2021.

Andrea (Andy) Manson

DIRECTOR

Andy relocated to beautiful Parksville having recently retired from her 30-year career operating a successful private nursing business in the lower mainland. She believes in the importance of volunteerism and giving back to her community, which she defines in the larger sense. Here community includes her professional community, the community where she lives and the community of the charitable sector. As a current SOS Project Rebuild Campaign Team member, and newcomer to the region, she brings her varied experience and “superpowers” to the community – that of “fresh” eyes, a sense of curiosity, a willingness to learn, to work hard, and a sense of humour.
Penny Shantz

DIRECTOR

After living in Edmonton, Alberta for 30 years, Penny moved to BC in 1989. Her career with Scotiabank started in Edmonton, moving to Kelowna and then Victoria, and she retired in Parksville in 2015. She has been involved with Rotary in Kelowna, Parksville and Qualicum, and she has volunteered with Haven House, KidSport and Beachfest. Penny is passionate about curling, and represented Canada at the 1988 Olympics in Calgary where her team won a Gold Medal. She is Past President of the Parksville Curling Club, a Consultant Coach for CurlBC, and a four-time BC Senior Ladies Champion. Penny and her partner Stan reside in Nanoose Bay, and she has 2 children and 4 grandchildren.
Anne Thompson
SOS DIRECTOR
Anne Thompson’s career and volunteer work has focused on empowering people to lead independent and healthy lifestyles. She has worked in the management of large, rural extension programs, as a lecturer and curriculum developer for Home Support Worker and Gerontology certificate programs at the community college level, and as a secondary school nutrition teacher. She was involved in the startup of a rural Meals on Wheels service and an urban Community Kitchen. She has participated on numerous committees including a Regional Home Care Program, an Independent Living Centre, an Interfaith Counselling Centre, and a provincial Homemaker Service. Anne was elected to the SOS Board in June, 2019.
Susanna Newton
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Susanna has worked most of her career in the non-profit sector and has been with SOS for over 25 years, most recently as Assistant Executive Director. Susanna was born and raised in Finland and moved to England in 1984, where she worked for a Housing Society on the Isle of Wight. She immigrated to Canada in 1992 with her husband and they landed in Coombs as “butterfly breeders” in the family business. Susanna became Executive Director of SOS in January 2018.

Charitable Number: 107021537RR0001

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