Our Team - Staff & Board

Board of Directors

James Wright

James Wright

Past Chairperson

James is a business owner and computer engineer by trade and an avid sports and creation enthusiast by choice. He joined the Habitat family because of his strong belief that affordable housing should be widely accessible for all. James brings an enthusiastic and eager attitude and a strong business-growth background to the team. “Other people inspire me, the drive and passion of people who push boundaries” – James Wright

Dustin Olson

Dustin Olson

Chairperson

With his CPA designation and experience as an Operations Manager, Dustin brings a logical and personable mind to our board. He recently joined the Board of Directors in 2016 and has already made his mark on the team! “[I decided to join the Board of Directors because] I have been actively looking for a way to volunteer that will help contribute to the community of Red Deer and allow for the chance to help others in need.” – Dustin Olson

Mindy Smythe

Mindy Smythe

Vice Chair

Mindy is a wife, mother of two and working sales professional with Abbey Platinum Master Built Homes. She has over 18 years of sales experience. Mindy is passionate about working together with homeowners to make their dream home a reality through design and quality craftsmanship. Joining the board of directors at Habitat for Humanity has offered another opportunity to foster the goal of building these dreams. She says she is excited to contribute to the success of such an integral organization.’

Daniel Roberts

Daniel Roberts

Treasurer

Coming soon

Audrey Michayluk

Audrey Michayluk

Secretary

As a retired federal government employee, Audrey brings a skill set unlike any other. With 40 years of volunteer experience and vast knowledge of working with social agencies and individuals down on their luck, Audrey is a perfect fit for the organization. She’s passionate about her family and has an active lifestyle year round. From crocheting and quilting to snowmobiling and traveling there isn’t anything Audrey won’t try.“I do not know the word relax, it is not in my nature as I like to be busy!” – Audrey

Shawn Sampson

Shawn Sampson

Director

Coming soon

Brett Bothwell

Brett Bothwell

Director

After taking time off after high school to play Junior A Hockey in Saskatchewan, Brett obtained his Bachelor of Laws from Cardiff University in 2014. Being a true Red Deerian, Brett appreciates the sense of community in Red Deer, and Habitat's continued support of the community is what drew my attention to Habitat for Humanity. “As I have now returned home and plan on being a part of the community for a number of years to come, I think being involved with Habitat would strengthen my connection with the community, as well as provide me a greater sense of involvement and accomplishment” – Brett Bothwell

Francois Bosman

Francois Bosman

Director

Born and raised in South Africa, Francois Bosman lived and worked in Dubai for 11 years prior to moving to Canada. His extensive international work experience enables him to think strategically and to adapt to different circumstances. While living in Dubai, he traveled extensively and immersed himself in different cultures, including volunteering his time teaching English. Francois has an adventurous spirit, having scaled the peaks of Kilimanjaro, Mt Kenia, Base Camp Everest and Mt Kinabalu. When he’s not climbing mountains, you will find him obstacle racing, running half marathons and training for his first Half Iron Man. Francois and his wife have lived in Red Deer for the past 7 years, raising two boys in a community that they are proud to call home. He joined the Habitat Red Deer board to apply his life and work experiences and to use this platform to uplift, connect, and give back to our community.

Jenn Craig

Jenn Craig

Director

Jenn Craig is the Managing Director of Rural Markets for Business & Agriculture at ATB, having worked there for the past 17 years. She has a passion for leadership and inspiring teams to deliver results. Jenn loves working with business owners and farmers in helping them connect with other experts in their fields to encourage start-up and growth ventures. She has 2 children Jemma and Jayden who keep her very busy with dance, hockey, and ball. Along with her husband Jason, they farm 3000 acres in the Delburne area. Jenn wanted to be a part of the Board of Directors for Habitat Red Deer as she sees it as a great opportunity to be more involved in community and give back to Red Deer and area families.

Staff Members

Karen Vavrek

Karen Vavrek

CEO

Karen joined the Habitat Red Deer team as CEO in early July 2017. She brings over 20 years’ experience working in the charitable non-profit sector, with several years in senior management roles. With a background in Business Administration, Karen is a passionate advocate for the non-profit sector. She enjoys the collaborative nature of working with staff, boards, volunteers, and donors to help build community capacity. Karen has been a resident of Central Alberta for the past nine years, living in Sylvan Lake with her husband John and 2 sons. She is an outdoor enthusiast and enjoys mountain biking, hiking and boating to relax and rejuvenate. “I am always amazed at what can be accomplished through the work of dedicated volunteers and donors. Habitat’s vision comes to life through their efforts!” – Karen Vavrek, CEO

Janelle Duffin

Janelle Duffin

Family Services & Office Manager

Joining us in April 2016, Janelle has been a welcome addition to the organization. Her flexibility and friendly demeanor make her perfect for the role of supporting each department. With a background in Correctional Studies, Janelle's unique thought process and intuitive mind-set make her a great addition to the affiliate and a natural when dealing with people from all walks of life. “I am inspired by my parents’ hearts to serve others—they have been a blessing to many people. I am also inspired by people who push themselves out of their comfort zone to create positive change.” – Janelle Duffin, Family Services & Office Manager

Jim Cave

Jim Cave

Acting Assistant Manager - ReStore

Jim has been with Habitat for Humanity Red Deer a little over 2 years; he started at Habitat Red Deer doing Customer Service, and driving the truck at our ReStore. In mid-July 2019, Jim accepted the role of Acting Assistant Manager. Jim says he is looking forward to the future with Habitat Red Deer.

 

 

Deanna Redford

Deanna Redford

Acting Store Manager - Restore

Deanna joined the ReStore team in May of 2019 as Assistant Manager. Deanna has experience in Retail Management, and thrives in work settings that focus on teamwork. Deanna also enjoys working with the public, and is looking forward to working with the staff, donors, and customers at the ReStore. Originally from Drayton Valley, Deanna has lived in Red Deer for 16 years with her son. She is not only a Journeyman Welder with 14 years experience, but she also has a wide variety of other trades experience. Deanna has volunteer and community experiences that range from random acts of kindness to being a volunteer at Camp Alexo. Deanna has also enjoyed being a chaperone for Boys and Girls clubs and Big Brothers and Big Sisters. Deanna is a very community minded person who strives to help others around her, with the goal of bringing community together. One of Deanna's most important goals is to make a difference in other people's lives; she has been very inspired by her Auntie Denice, who has often pushed her to be the best she could be.

Kurt Von Hollen

Kurt Von Hollen

Construction Manager

Joining us in October 2017, Kurt brings a skill set built over 20 years of construction experience in various fields, everything from pouring a foundation to turning over a new home. Kurt is a product of the Red Deer Kings Soccer and Basketball clubs and has been involved in the community for many years. Volunteering with Special Olympics, coaching soccer and basketball at various ages and skill levels and working on Future TREKK at a National level are just a few of his achievements. He is excited to apply his professional attitude and knowledge to ensure the many volunteers and families that make the Habitat builds possible feel welcome and appreciated. Being apart of Habitat Red Deer brings great meaning to his every day tasks.

Tori Gilbertson

Tori Gilbertson

Volunteer & Communications Coordinator

Tori joined the Habitat team in September 2018 as Assistant Manager at our ReStore, and worked with many of our donors and the general public while in this position. In May 2019, Tori accepted a new challenge, and took over the role of Volunteer & Communications Coordinator here at Habitat. She has her Diploma in Community Service, and is happiest working with the public and in a team environment. Tori is looking forward to nurturing and fostering new connections in the community!

Christel Closs

Christel Closs

Warehouse and Truck - ReStore

Christel is a "born and raised Red-Deer-ian!" She has more than 10 years experience with Customer Service and is comfortable in retail settings and with the general public. Christel joined Habitat for Humanity Red Deer in August 2019 and is eager to work with the customers, donors, and other staff members at the ReStore. Welcome to Habitat for Humanity Red Deer, Christel!

Ken Roberts

Ken Roberts

Warehouse & Customer Service - ReStore
Damon Vavrek

Damon Vavrek

Warehouse Assistant - ReStore

Damon has been with the Habitat Team since September 2018 as a Warehouse Assistant. In addition to working in the Warehouse and the ReStore, Damon also drives the cube van and goes out into the community to pick up donations. Damon enjoys receiving donations and delivering items to customers, and also enjoys being helpful in assisting families with their shopping needs at the ReStore.

Diego Griffo

Diego Griffo

Product Procurement & Merchandise Coordinator

Diego is a 2018 graduate from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology. He entered into the school of business and chose to major in Supply Chain Management. Joining our team in August of 2019, Diego is excited to begin a new career in his field and see what he can do to help out the community. When he’s not at home relaxing he likes to get out and travel, typically going to Southern or Central America to visit family. He has only recently moved to Red Deer with his fiancée but is excited to see what the local area has to offer the both of them.