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Board of Directors

Successful and committed charities require an equally successful and committed board of directors. The YMCA of Northeastern Ontario has unique, committed and remarkable board members, all volunteers, drawn from the communities we serve. Each work to ensure our YMCA fulfills its mission and achieves its work for our constituent communities and for the region.

Tom Welton – Chair

Andrew Finlay – Treasurer & Secretary

Kristian Gareau – Vice Chair

Gisele Lynch – Director

Hélène Philbin Wilkinson – Director

Steffi Wittmaack – Director

Jason Corbett – Director

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Tom Welton – Vice Chair

A graduate of Lakehead University Forestry program, and Ryerson University Occupational Health and Safety Certificate Program, Tom Welton also holds the Canadian Registered Safety Professional (CRSP) designation.

With more than 30 years’ experience as a health and safety professional in the forestry, pulp and paper industry, and its designated health and safety association Workplace Safety North (WSN), Welton currently holds the position of WSN Director, General Prevention Services.

Tom is a board member of the local YMCA of Northeastern Ontario; Welton is an active member of the North Bay community and enjoys instructing downhill skiing for disabled youth.

Kristian Gareau – Treasurer

A lifelong resident of Sudbury, Kristian joined the YMCA NEO Board in January of 2017.

Kristian holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Laurentian University and a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Edinburgh. He has been employed with Vale/Inco since 2000, and holds a Senior Leadership role within the Organization. Kristian currently holds the role of Vice Chair for the Board.

Andrew Finlay – Director

Andrew joined the Board of Directors of the YMCA of Northeastern Ontario following a 30 year career with Scotiabank, leading an international team of labour and employee relations professionals. Andrew has led Canadian business on labour, human rights and employment related public policy, including as a representative on Governing Body of the United Nations International Labour Organization. He currently offers workplace investigation and mediation services.

Andrew has had a North Bay connection since his University days when he met his wife, Janet. He moved to North Bay in 2015 permanently. He loves the North Bay winter as much as the North Bay summer and believes that Northern Ontario offers the very best of lifestyle and life experience. Janet and Andrew have three grown children.

Andrew credits his YMCA experience during his teens for helping build his work ethic and personal values, and his ongoing commitment to his community.

Andrew has degrees from McMaster University (BA), University of Ottawa (LLB) and Osgoode Hall Law School (LLM), as well as a diploma in Recreation Studies from Mohawk College, and Mediation and Negotiation certificates from the University of Windsor. He was called to the Bar of Ontario in 1987. Andrew has lived most of his life in Hamilton and worked for many years in Toronto.

Gisele Lynch – Director

Gisele Lynch spent thirty years with the Near North District School Board as a teacher and administrator. She has served as both vice chair and chair of the YMCA board since being on the Board of the YMCA of Northeastern Ontario. Gisele has one daughter, Nicole, currently living in Calgary. Gisele began attending the YMCA in North Bay for swimming lessons as a child and after moving back to North Bay with her daughter, rejoined the YMCA and has been a member since. She is also an active member of the Rotary Club of North Bay.

Gisele enjoys being active and regularly attends the YMCA for fitness classes, pickleball or just working out in the gym. She also enjoys curling and snowshoeing in the winter, golfing, biking and kayaking in the summer. Travel is also an activity enjoyed by both Gisele and her partner, Steve.

Hélène Philbin Wilkinson – Director

Hélène was born and raised in North Bay, Hélène has been a YMCA member most of her life. She has over 30 years of clinical and leadership experience in health care having held positions in health promotion, community development, systems planning and service delivery both locally and across the Northeast.

Hélène is skilled in operational reviews, service transformation, project/risk management and developing cross-sector partnerships. She brings considerable knowledge about health, safety and quality standards acquired by being a surveyor and expert advisor with Accreditation Canada. She holds a Master’s Degree in Nursing and is a Certified Health Executive with the Canadian College of Health Leaders.

A positive, creative and trusted leader with an open and consultative style, Hélène is committed to teamwork and bringing out the best in people, and is thrilled about having the opportunity to give back to the YMCA of Northeastern Ontario.