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Meet the New Chelsea Society Leadership Team

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Patrick Buchannon

CEO

Patrick has been the Executive Director, and now CEO of New Chelsea Society since 1997. Under his leadership, New Chelsea Society has nearly quadrupled its portfolio of housing units and has grown considerably its capacity and reputation as the third largest nonprofit housing provider in the Lower Mainland. Patrick holds a Bachelors of Arts degree from UBC, a Certificate in Senior Management from the Banff Centre for Higher Learning, and is also a Chartered Member of the Charter Institute of Housing – International. He was one of the CIH Western Canada Founders. He served on the Board of Directors of the BC Non-Profit Housing Association for 6 years, and was a member of the Burnaby Mayor’s Task Force on Community Housing in 2018-19. He has served on the boards of a number of local non-profit organizations including the George Derby Care Society and the Veteran’s Memorial Housing Society. He is also an accomplished bagpiper and the Staff-Sergeant Emeritus & long time Secretary-Treasurer of the New Westminster Pipe Band.

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Zahra Laarif, CPA, CGA

Director of Finance

Zahra brings many years of financial management experience having served with a number of organizations in various different sectors. She has had the honor of working with First Nations communities within British Columbia and has gained valuable skills and experience in managing Government funded programs and projects, budgets, and policy development. Zahra has her Chartered Professional Accountants CGA designation, a Diploma of Technology in Financial Management from BCIT and her Bachelors of Science degree from the University of Sydney Australia. She is a former Director and Treasurer of the Board for the Aboriginal Mothers Center Society. In her spare time Zahra enjoys spending time with her family and staying active playing team sports.

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Scott Stewart, CertCIH

Director of Operations

Scott has been with New Chelsea since January of 2016, and was brought on board as an Operations Manager to oversee 715 units as well as assist in the takeover of New Chelsea’s newest property – Stamps Place – from BC Housing. Prior to New Chelsea, Scott worked for the Provincial Government and for North West Hydraulics. Scott completed his Professional Property Manager and Property Management Certificates as well as his Social Housing Management Certificate at Langara College. In the spring of 2019 Scott achieved his “Certified” designation – CertCIH – with the Chartered Institute of Housing. When not at work you can find Scott in the workshop he has assembled, either teaching others about woodworking or working on personal projects himself – unless it is sunny out – and then you will find him on the golf course.

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Shehzan Nathoo

Director of Administration & Human Resources

Shehzan is responsible for providing high level administrative support to senior management, the board of directors, and all committees. She serves as the staff benefits administrator, looks after all the personnel records, produces newsletters and marketing materials and other administrative publications such as staff manuals and board governance manuals. She also manages the daily office operations and supervises the head office administrative staff and social media coordinator.

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Derek Davidson

Director of Resident Services and Community Development

Derek comes to New Chelsea Society with over 30 years experience in leadership roles within charitable and not-for-profit organizations, all of which have been very “people focused”. Derek holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Oberlin College (Ohio, USA) and a Masters degree in Health Services Administration, The George Washington University. Over the course of his career, Derek has held various health care administrative positions, functioned as an Executive Director for a Scottish cultural organization, served in the role of event manager, and is a long time educator in the Scottish performing arts. He provides bagpiping instruction to youth organizations, such as the Royal Canadian Army Cadets (RCAC), and participates in several community-based Scottish and Celtic organizations.

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Marianna Nemeth, CertCIH

Property Portfolio Manager

Marianna brings 20 years of managerial and conflict resolution experience to the role of Property Operations and Tenant Relations. She provides assistance in areas of governance of building components, responsible for all aspects of operations and remediation. Marianna aims at providing timely attention to all her clients and adopts a positive and enthusiastic hands on approach to ensure a positive impact on those she connects with. Marianna holds Certificates in Property Management, Building Management, Water Restoration, Social Housing Management and is an accredited member of CIH Canada.

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Ian Patch

Property Portfolio Manager

Ian joined the society in March of 2019 and has been working as a Property Portfolio Manager since December 2019. Ian is passionate about contributing to the community and is excited to help bring affordable housing to those in need. He brings a background in property administration, conflict resolution and team management.

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Karen Dupont

Manager of Chelsea Park

Following work in administration in Engineering, Land Surveying and Construction fields for 16 years. Karen transitioned to Health Care – specifically Mental Health for 25 years, finally fulfilling her purpose in life with New Chelsea Society in Seniors’ Care. Since 2008 Karen has maintained the personal goal and gratification of implementing and effecting a sense of belonging and satisfaction for our Independent Seniors living at Chelsea Park.