About Us

Our Governance

Since 1887, we have been governed and led by a number of voluntary and passionate individuals, committed to helping animals, improving their welfare and building a more humane society. Over the course of our history, we have seen many different projects, programs, facilities and initiatives, but one thing has remained the same – the desire and drive of our Board of Directors, to help animals.

 

Our passion needs structure and guidance to ensure the best results and at our organization, we remain governed by a skilled, and passionate Board of Directors, in the same democratic way we were governed in 1887. Supporting and outlining our operational mandate, are our organizational By-Laws which legally outline our governance practices.

 

Our Board is made up of 15 Directors who volunteer their time, knowledge and expertise to guide, lead and govern our organization. Our Board of Directors meet monthly as a group to discuss, vote and address items related to our strategic plan and direction, while ensuring that our organization continues to move forward and Improve the Lives of Animals.

Meet our Board

Officers

President: Krista Bulmer

Chair: Martin Buckle

Vice President: Dominique Rousselle

Secretary: Nicholas Kanhai

Treasurer: Stephen Steele

Directors at Large

Malcolm Bernstein

David Bronskill

Mark Dilworth

Yussef Hafez

Charissa Lai

Kathy McDonald

Peter Newell

Emily Pang

Josh Shanahan

Angela Young

Board Committees

To support the Board, our governance structure also includes many committees that work to address more specific areas including reviewing, debating and discussing topics and items essential to our on-going work. As well, committees make recommendations and provide direction and support back to the Board as a whole. Committee membership is generally made up of Board Directors who have a passion and specific skill set that benefits the focus of each committee, with work additionally supported by staff.

The Animal Welfare Committee is a standing Committee of Toronto Humane Society’s Board of Directors, constituted for the purpose of ensuring active engagement of the Board in animal welfare matters, in keeping with the objects of our organization.

Committee Chair: Angela Young – Board Director

Committee Members:

– Dr. Mark Dilworth – Board Director
– Dominique Rousselle – Vice President of the Board
– Kathy Macdonald – Board Director
– Bronwen Morgan – Past Board Director and Chair
– Josh Shanahan – Board Director
– Phil Nichols – Staff

The Audit & Finance Committee is responsible for the oversight and reporting to Toronto Humane Society Board of Directors with respect to pertinent areas of finance and administration of the organization and ensures that Toronto Humane Society remains fiscally responsible, compliant and exercises strong and sound financial practices.

Chair: Stephen Steele – Treasurer of the Board

Members:

Martin Buckle – Chair of the Board
Emily Pang – Board Director
Charissa Lai – Board Director
Catherine Anne Macdonald – Staff

The Development Committee is a standing Committee of Toronto Humane Society’s Board of Directors constituted for the purpose of ensuring active engagement of the Board in monitoring policy for, and directly supporting ongoing fundraising activities of Toronto Humane Society.

Chair:

Members:

Josh Shanahan – Board Director
Yussef Havez – Board Director
Nabila Tisha – Member at Large
Tegan Buckingham – Staff

The Governance Committee is responsible for making recommendations to Toronto Humane Society’s Board of Directors on all governance and strategic issues. It also has a responsibility to stay abreast of best governance practices and implement these where appropriate with respect to the organization’s affairs.

Chair: Krista Bulmer – President of the Board

Members:

Martin Buckle – Chair of the Board
Emily Pang – Board Director
Kathy McDonald – Board Director
Peter Newell – Board Director
David Bronskill – Board Director
Nicholas Kanhai – Secretary of the Board

The Advocacy Committee is responsible for making discussing, debating and making recommendations to Toronto Humane Society’s Board of Directors on all advocacy stances and issues. It has a responsibility to stay abreast of current events, public policy and matters of animal welfare to ensure that Toronto Humane Society is taking a strong stance and working to advocate for improvements to the Lives of Animals.
Chair: Martin Buckle – Chair of the Board

Members:
Krista Bulmer – President of the Board
Kathy McDonald – Board Director
Josh Shanahan – Board Director
Jacques Messier – Staff

The Facilities Committee is responsible for ensuring that the owned physical property of Toronto Humane Society is being soundly managed and maintained. The facilities committee also makes recommendations to Toronto Humane Society’s Board of Directors on all property and facility matters related to the strategic direction of the organization.

Chair: Dominique Rousselle – Vice President of the Board

Members:
Stephen Steele – Treasurer of the Board
Kathy McDonald – Board Director
Peter Newell – Board Director
David Bronskill – Board Director

Interested in joining the Board?

Every year, our members elect five Directors, who serve a three-year term. Consider joining our Volunteer Board of Directors. Read the Director Profile to learn what the Board does and what skills and experience are most needed.

Email us at membership@torontohumanesociety.com if you have questions.

1. THS Minutes-January 26th, 2021

2.THS Minutes-December 15th, 2020

3. THS Minutes-November 24th, 2020

4. THS Minutes-October 27th, 2020

5. THS Minutes-September 29, 2020

6. THS Minutes-August 29, 2020

7.THS Minutes-June 30, 2020

8. THS Minutes-May 26, 2020

9. THS Minutes-April 28, 2020

10. THS Minutes-March 31, 2020

11. THS Minutes-February 25, 2020

12.THS Minutes-January 27, 2020

13.THS Minutes-December 3, 2019

14.THS Minutes-October 29, 2019

15.THS Minutes-September 24, 2019

16.THS Minutes-June 25, 2019

17.THS Minutes-June 11, 2019

18.THS Minutes-May 28, 2019

19.THS Minutes-May 10, 2019

20.THS Minutes-April 30, 2019

21.THS Minutes-March 26, 2019

22.THS Minutes-February 26, 2019

23.THS Minutes-January 22, 2019

24.THS Minutes-December 12, 2018

25.THS Minutes-November 27, 2018

26.THS Minutes-October 30, 2018

27.THS Minutes-September 25, 2018

28.THS Minutes-August 28, 2018

29.THS Minutes-July 14, 2018

30.THS Minutes-June 26, 2018

31.THS Minutes-May 30, 2018

32.THS Minutes-May 8, 2018

33.THS Minutes-May 1, 2018

34.THS Minutes-April 24, 2018

35.THS Minutes-March 27, 2018

36.THS Minutes-February 27, 2018

37.THS Minutes-January 23, 2018

38.THS Minutes-November 28, 2018

39.THS Minutes-October 25, 2017

40.THS Minutes-September 26, 2017

41.THS Minutes-August 29, 2017

42.THS Minutes-July 27, 2017

43.THS Minutes-June 13, 2017

44.THS Minutes-May 16, 2017

45.THS Minutes-April 27, 2017

49.THS Minutes-January 12, 2017

46.THS Minutes-April 18, 2017

47.THS Minutes-March 9, 2017

48.THS Minutes-February 9, 2017

49.THS Minutes-January 12, 2017

50.THS Minutes-November 17, 2016

51.THS Minutes-October 6, 2016

52.THS Minutes-September 13, 2016

53.THS Minutes-August 11, 2016

54.THS Minutes-July 6, 2016

55.THS Minutes-June 13, 2016

Krista Bulmer

Nearly 30 years ago, I adopted my first cat from the Toronto Humane Society (THS), followed a couple of years later by an amazing dog. I have always wanted to give back to the THS in a meaningful way. I now find myself in a position where, as an experienced lawyer, I have skills that may assist the THS Board. I acted on behalf of animal rights advocates and assisted a group of dedicated women to establish a foster-based dog rescue in the GTA. I have experience sitting on a Board and believe my professional background together with my work in rescue will allow me to bring a unique perspective to the THS Board. I look forward to moving the THS forward in its mission and continuing the many years of incredible work of the THS.

Krista Bulmer

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Martin Buckle

For the past three years I have used my skills as an accountant with over 25 years experience in finance, strategy, and government relations to support the management and staff of the THS in carrying out their vital work saving animals and supporting our communities. As Chair of the Advocacy Committee I am delighted that Canada’s Animal Welfare legislation was tightened last year to ban trading sharks fins, eliminate captivity of whales and dolphins, and crack down on animal abuse. Ontario has also improved its laws with the PAWS Act. But much more remains to be done and I want the chance to continue this vital work.

Martin Buckle

I am grateful to the members of the Toronto Humane Society for entrusting me with the opportunity to serve on their board and help improve the lives of animals and sincerely hope you will honour me with the chance to serve again.

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Dominique Rousselle

Originally from France, Dominique Rousselle holds a B.A from Laurentian University, a B.Ed. from University of Toronto plus credits to a Masters degree. Now retired after 35 years of teaching, he devotes much of his time to animal welfare.

Since 2008 Dominique has been a dedicated volunteer walking the most difficult THS dogs. After years of being in the “human” classroom, shelter dogs are his new and well-behaved students! In 2014 he was recognised as the top THS volunteer who contributed the highest number of volunteer hours.

Dominique Rousselle

Dominique is also involved in relocating dogs to other rescues and shelters and heads the THS “tactical unit” that humanely traps strays. He has fostered many THS dogs with behavioural issues and those needing palliative care. Currently, Chez Rousselle is home to four older rescue dogs enjoying their golden years in comfort!

Frequently Dominique travels to Thailand where, sadly, there are many strays. Under the name “Dogs without Collars” he feeds, neuters and treats Bangkok street dogs for parasites, infections and injuries. He has flown (at his own expense) more than fifty lucky street pups to Toronto where, with THS help, they were adopted to loving homes.

A wonderful ambassador for kindness to animals, Dominique has been honoured by the Thai Consulate in Toronto and featured in many newspapers in the Orient.

Dominique looks forward to joining THS board. As a director he will bring his love of animals, his boundless energy and his vast experience in animal welfare both here and abroad.

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Nicholas Kanhai

During my many years living in India and Vietnam, I encountered many street dogs and cats, many of whom roamed wild in the streets around where I lived. I got to know these animals personally, having shown them warmth and care that their environments neglected to provide. Their gentleness and eagerness for affection shone through, and their street-toughened exteriors melted away when shown the slightest bit of kindness. It deeply impacted me to see so many animals ignored, abused, and neglected. I now have rescued both a cat and a dog, whom I love as my own.

We have a responsibility to care for animals, to provide them with codified rights, and to ensure that society collectively steps up to provide animals with safe homes. I will bring my education, technical know-how, strategic leadership experience, and non-profit grantwriting experience to the THS board with enthusiasm and dedication to its mission.

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Treasurer: Stephen Steele

Stephen has been a Board member and THS’ Treasurer for the past four years. Using his more than 30 years of Finance and Treasury experience with a major multinational company, he has strengthened THS’ financial security and introduced strategic planning to ensure the future sustainability of this organization we all know and love.

Financial Leadership

As Chair of the Audit and Finance, Strategic Planning and Budget Committees, Stephen has helped THS to develop balanced budgets, eliminate debt, and grow a solid “rainy day” fund. After four years of Stephen’s skilled financial management, the shelter is now on a much firmer footing and can continue to provide animal care in case of unforeseen or unexpected events.

Foster Parent

Treasurer: Stephen Steele

Stephen not only cares for THS’ finances, he and his family believe that animal care and welfare come first. As foster parents, they care for homeless kittens until they are ready for adoption. Stephen has also actively promoted the adoption of animals from our shelter, donated generously and aggressively supported fundraising.

Stephen knows, very personally, the incredible role that cats, dogs and all animals play in enriching our lives. He believes passionately that every animal is special. And that every animal deserves our utmost care. He knows that the Toronto Humane Society is dedicated to providing that care and he is proud to play a small role.

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Malcolm Bernstein

 I have a longstanding commitment to THS and a passion for animal welfare. My background includes executive and consulting roles in board governance, strategy, and human resources. As a THS member, I have volunteered drafting the bylaws and advising the Board on governance matters. I also run my own non-profit initiative, The Benjamin Project, in memory of my dog, to raise funds for shelters and education on responsible pet stewardship. THS held the launch of my first book about Benjamin and my children’s book has just been published. All revenues from book sales are donated. It would be a privilege to apply my skills, experience and passion for animals to help advance THS strategically, financially, and from a governance perspective. My commitment is to work tirelessly to ensure THS remains a first class organization for staff, members, and most importantly, the animals in its care.

Malcolm Bernstein

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David Bronskill

As a lawyer, after two years’ absence following a six year term, I welcome the opportunity to serve again on the Board to continue the ongoing evolution of the THS into a leading animal welfare organization. The THS has already made incredible progress since 2009, and I was privileged to play a small role as Board Chair, and in some initiatives such as the low-cost spay-neuter clinic and the member code of conduct.

In returning to the Board, I would like to focus on expanding our role in the local community through provision of low-cost veterinary services, and more broadly through expanded advocacy on animal welfare issues, including leadership in making the Greater Toronto Area a successful no-kill community.

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Mark Dilworth

Animals are my life – I currently live with five dogs! I am also a veterinarian and co-owner at Beaches Animal Hospital. Previously, I practiced emergency medicine at a 24-hour-hospital and an emergency clinic.

BAH is dedicated to helping rescue groups. Our amazing staff understand the importance of rescue groups, having critical access to veterinary services to enable animals to be treated and moved into forever homes. This is also why BAH has its own successful adoption program. I am also proud of BAH’s close relationship with the Toronto People with AIDS.

Over the years, I have been privileged to work with the veterinary staff at the THS and the Toronto Wildlife Centre to assist with advice and services. Becoming part of the Board is a natural progression in this relationship and I look forward to working with staff to facilitate THS’ ongoing evolution into the leading animal shelter.

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Yussef Hafez

Last summer I completed a pro bono project for THS. I found it fulfilling to recommend changes that positively impacted the employee experience and welfare of the animals. It also gave me a chance to interact with the team, and provided firsthand exposure into the impressive initiatives and impact THS has had on the community. I believe in its strategic vision, but understand the challenges it faces – all of which threaten its long-term viability. THS must continue to operate as a business – to capitalize on new revenue sources, reduce costs, and improve efficiency – with minimal impacts to its mission, and the care and well-being of its animals, employees, and community. I believe my passion for animals, my experience helping organizations thrive, my strong work ethic and leadership skills make me an ideal candidate to join THS’ Board of Directors and support the sustainable achievement of its strategic plan.

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Charissa Lai

Growing up in South Africa, I was happiest in the company of our multiple family dogs and in exploration of the wildlife for which South Africa is so well known; these personal experiences have imbibed in me the compassion for animals I have today.

With this underlying compassion as a driving purpose, I help the THS fulfill its mission of promoting the care of animals and becoming a best-in-class animal shelter. My financial and business experience allows me to optimize THS’ financial resources to help as many animals as possible.

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Kathy McDonald

Kathy was called to the bar 35 years ago, earning her law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School.

Thereafter Kathy gained tremendous experience participating in arbitrations and workplace harassment investigations, working as the Executive Assistant for Stephen Lewis (formerly leader of the Ontario NDP and more recently Ambassador to the United Nations).

For the past 18 years Kathy has acted as In-House Counsel for The United Church of Canada.

Kathy McDonald

THS VOLUNTEER

For the past 8 years, Kathy has been a dedicated volunteer with Toronto Humane Society. She also volunteers with Annex Cat Rescue, including feeding two feral cat colonies, and Toronto Street Cats (an all-volunteer group that has spay/neutered close to 4,000 street cats for free).

Her work with the THS started with the most fragile and helpless – bottle feeding neonatal and immature kittens. Over the years her THS volunteer role has expanded to include cat enrichment, events volunteer, the Volunteer Committee, and foster home for feline mothers and their litters.

With the recent passing of her beloved 14 year old dog, Gordie (the best dog anyone could ever have!), Kathy has begun fostering dogs with a local dog rescue group.

Kathy’s entire life has been enriched by animals. With her boundless energy and enthusiasm, Kathy is deeply committed to ensuring that THS becomes a global leader in animal welfare. She believes in working with the community to ensure no animal is left behind.

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Peter Newell

My life continues to be enriched by my many beloved animal friends, past and present. The volunteer work I have done at THS in the past and everything I propose to do now is, in a very real sense, dedicated to them. In the six years that I served on the THS Board, I was repeatedly impressed by the enthusiasm and selfless dedication of volunteers, staff and leadership. I share that commitment and look forward to contributing to THS’ ongoing success and, most importantly, each animal’s success. As a senior partner with decades of experience in a major law firm,

Peter Newell

 working closely with organizations of all kinds, I believe I have many skills that can help THS to play a leadership role in making Toronto a truly successful no-kill community – and also to thrive as a sound, well-governed institution of which we can all be justly proud.

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Emily Pang

I have always loved animals and wondered why they were not afforded at least the same respect and privileges as humans. I hope that I can assist the THS to best steward their resources using my finance background; and ensure effective governance by leveraging my board-related experience in order to help as many animals as possible. In addition, by sharing practices across the not-for-profit sector, I believe I can offer insights into fundraising and donor relations to help THS grow to fulfil its vision.

Emily Pang

The two loves of my life, Fitzwallace and Bartlett, participated in many years of Paws In the Park but had to leave us for unlimited running in other parks. Their leash has been taken up by Josh, my two year puppy who has already helped raised funds for THS in his first two PITP.

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Josh Shanahan

When I was 10 years old, my family adopted our first cat “Sneaker” from a shelter in Windsor. In the more than 25 years since, we’ve adopted four dogs and two cats, with our most recent addition being our cat “Bentley” who brings laughter and joy to me and my partner daily.

As a communications professional I have more than 12 years of experience creating robust communications plans to help organizations deliver on their strategies through good times and bad. My approach to communications is to leverage the power of storytelling to connect with people on a personal level and help them understand the important pieces in an organization’s narrative.

I believe in the mission of the THS and hope to have the opportunity to use my diverse skillset to navigate potential challenging headwinds ahead and be a sustainable organization that continues fighting for animal welfare for years to come.

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Angela Young

I am a seasoned chartered professional accountant (CPA,CA) and chief auditor (CIA) with over twenty years of experience in strategic planning, financial management, auditing, governance and risk management. I have been a member of the THS Audit Committee since 2016 and Assistant Treasurer for over a year supporting THS Board on financial oversight. I also love being a volunteer dog walker and foster dog parent at THS.

I am elated to see the animals find their forever home with help from the professional, dedicated and compassionate THS staff. At home, I am happiest cuddling with Java and Latte, my beloved senior dogs and taking them for walks at the beach.

Angela Young

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