Biographies - Board of Governors

Beverly Van Ruyven, Chair

Beverly Van Ruyven, Chair

Order-in-council appointee
Beverly Van Ruyven holds a BA from the University of Victoria and completed the Executive Management Program at the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario. She was the deputy CEO and executive vice-president, customer care and conservation at BC Hydro, retiring from that position in 2011. Prior to her 15 years with the utility she held several senior management roles at Canada Post. Van Ruyven is the past chair of the Western Energy Institute and has served on the boards of Accenture Business Services for Utilities, Fraser Basin Council, Downs Syndrome Research Foundation, Science World and was a member of the Vancouver Board of Trade Women’s Leadership Circle. In 2009 and 2010 she was named as one of Canada’s Most Powerful Women – Top 100. Van Ruyven currently serves on the board of InnerChange Foundation. She served on the UVic Board of Governors from November 2009 to November 2015; her current appointment is effective until July 2020.
Cathy McIntyre, Vice-Chair

Cathy McIntyre, Vice-Chair

Order-in-council appointee

Cathy McIntyre is principal of Strategic Initiatives, a Victoria marketing research firm. Her background includes more than 25 years of sales, marketing and communications, and consulting experience, and more than 15 years of board service. A chartered director (C.Dir), McIntyre currently serves on the Boards of Directors of First West Credit Union, Consumer Protection BC, Peninsula Co-op, CADTH and the Canadian Arthritis Society. She is a former director of the United Way of Greater Victoria, the United Way of Canada, the Victoria Hospitals Foundation and the CMA Society of BC, among others. She is a past president of the UVic Alumni Association and has served as a convocation senator on UVic’s Senate.

McIntyre was acknowledged as one of UVic’s “50 Alumni Who Made a Difference” in 2013 and received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012. She has served on the UVic Board of Governors since 2015; her current appointment is effective until July 2021.

Merle Alexander

Merle Alexander

Order-in-council appointee

Merle Alexander is a partner with Miller Titerle + Co. Alexander practices Indigenous resource law, focusing on Indigenous sustainable development. Active within his community, Alexander is a former director and president of the Vancouver Native Housing Society Foundation, has served as the chief negotiator for a UN Indigenous Caucus and was also a director and president of the Vancouver Child Family Services Society. He is a recipient of Business in Vancouver's 2009 "Top Forty Under 40" award and a UVic Distinguished Alumni Award. Alexander holds a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws from the University of Victoria.

Rizwan Bashir

Rizwan Bashir

Elected staff member

Rizwan Bashir is the elected non-faculty employee on the Board of Governors. Bashir joined University of Victoria in 2007 as a Programmer Analyst and he is currently employed as Manager, Production and Technical Support services in University Systems managing University’s enterprise software systems and applications. The Convocation elected Bashir to UVic Senate in 2015 where he has acquired an extensive knowledge of the University’s vision, mission, and strategies. In addition to a Bachelor of Computer Science degree, he holds a Masters Certificate in Project Management, a Project Management Professional credential and an Executive Leadership certificate.

 

Elizabeth Borycki

Elizabeth Borycki

Elected faculty member

Elizabeth Borycki is the director of the social dimensions of health and health and society programs in the Office of Interdisciplinary Studies, and a full professor in the School of Health Information Science at the University of Victoria.  Borycki’s work is respected by her colleagues and highly cited internationally in the field of health informatics. She has published over 180 articles, book chapters and several books focusing on health information technology.  Borycki has held numerous academic leadership roles internationally.  She was appointed academic representative for Digital Health Canada (2007-2013) and vice-president representing North America on the board of directors for the International Medical Informatics Association (IMIA) (2010–2013).  Borycki is currently serving on the board of directors of IMIA as vice-president – special projects, where she is using her expertise to promote accreditation of medical and health informatics education globally. Her research and publications have led to her being elected to the IMIA Academy of Health Sciences Informatics as one of the top 100 health informatics researchers in the world.  She has also been appointed to the American College of Medical Informatics for her contributions to the fields of biomedical and health informatics, and in 2017 she was named one of the top 10 Women in Digital Health by Digital Health Canada. 

Marilyn Callahan

Marilyn Callahan

Order-in-council appointee

Marilyn Callahan has held leadership positions in academia, the non-profit sector and government.   As a professor in the School of Social Work at UVic, she coordinated the first distance education degree program in social work in Canada including an off campus degree program for Indigenous social workers.  She was the co-director of a Canada Europe exchange program, served as director of the School of Social Work, an advisor to the vice-president academic, and was a member of several university wide committees. Callahan was the president of the BC Association of Social Workers, chair of the Capital Health Board and AIDS Vancouver Island, a member of the Judicial Council of BC and the National Board of Accreditation for Social Work Education. Callahan was named a Commonwealth Scholar by the government of Australia and won the annual Canadian Association for Social Work Education Award for Excellence. She holds a BA, BSW and MSW from UBC and a PhD in social policy and administration from the University of Bristol, UK.

Jamie Cassels

Jamie Cassels

President and Vice-Chancellor

Jamie Cassels, QC is the University of Victoria’s President and Vice-Chancellor. He was Dean of UVic Law from 1999 to 2001 and from 2001 to 2010 served as UVic’s Vice-President Academic and Provost. Cassels is a renowned and dedicated scholar, teacher and educational leader. He has received numerous awards, including a 3M National Teaching Fellowship. Additionally, Cassels is a member of the Bar of British Columbia and has frequently been asked for legal advice and guidance on issues of public importance. He holds a BA in law and philosophy from Carleton University, an LLB (bachelor of law) from the University of Western Ontario and an LLM (master of law) from Columbia University.

Daphne Corbett

Daphne Corbett

Order-in-council appointee

Daphne Corbett received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Victoria in 1970. She is a former member of the Certified Management Accountants of British Columbia with over 20 years’ experience in the financial industry. From 1981 to 2003, Corbett worked in senior and executive positions with HSBC Bank including Head of Audit Canada, Head of Audit Latin America with HSBC Brazil, Senior Vice President BC Region, and Senior Vice President and Business Manager Wealth and Tax Advisory Services Inc in San Francisco. She served as a Director of Emergency Communications for Southwest British Columbia Incorporated for seven years and as its Chair from 2008 to 2010. She has been an Independent Director of Pulse Seismic Inc, a TSX listed company, since June 2004 and is Chair of its Audit Committee. Corbett was previously a director on the boards of the Royal B.C. Museum, chairing its Finance Committee, the Pacific Salmon Foundation and the Arts Club Theatre of Vancouver.

Peter  Driessen

Peter Driessen

Elected faculty member
Peter Driessen was first appointed at UVic in 1985, and is currently Professor in Engineering with cross-appointments in Music and Computer Science. He spent 10 years part-time at AT&T Bell Laboratories in New Jersey and 5 years working for technology companies in Vancouver. His teaching and research interests include music technology, sound recording, wireless communications, radiowave propagation, signal processing and multimedia. Driessen has over 100 publications and 15 patents, and holds research funding from several granting councils.  He has initiated several interdisciplinary undergraduate programs and options, including a business option in Engineering and a combined degree program in Music and Computer Science. He also serves on the University Senate. Driessen has undertaken professional development in Governance via the Institute of Corporate Directors. He also serves on the Board of the Victoria Conservatory of Music and chairs its Artistic and Academic Committee. He holds a B.Sc and Ph.D from the University of British Columbia.
Isabella Lee

Isabella Lee

Elected by student associations

Isabella Lee, is a third-year student at UVic, majoring in Sociology with a minor in Public Administration. She served as the Social Science Senator and as the Director of Student Affairs of the University of Victoria Student Society in 2018. She was also the president of a Uvic political club, and the vice-president of the French Course Union. Her focus is to make politics accessible for everyone. Being a member of these clubs and course unions, has allowed her to help build community on campus. When she is not at school or at work, she likes to volunteer with the Girl Guides of Canada. Lee, through her involvements has learned valuable lessons of leadership, teamwork and dedication. She looks forward to continuing to find new ways to improve the life of her campus community.

Eslam Mehina

Eslam Mehina

Elected by student associations

Eslam Mehina is a PhD candidate in the Division of Medical Sciences. Committed to enhancing graduate student experiences at the University of Victoria, Mehina has been a graduate student representative to the Faculty of Graduate Studies Council and the Chair of the Neuroscience Graduate Students’ Association for two terms. Concurrently with her appointment to the University of Victoria Board of Governors, she is also serving as a graduate student representative to the University Senate. Mehina has been awarded national and provincial funding as both an undergraduate and MSc student, and is the recipient of a prestigious NSERC Vanier CGS-D for her PhD research. She holds a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science from the University of Calgary.

Shelagh Rogers

Shelagh Rogers

Chancellor

Shelagh Rogers, OC, became the University of Victoria’s 11th chancellor on January 1, 2015

A veteran broadcast-journalist, Shelagh Rogers is the host and a producer of The Next Chapter, an award-winning CBC Radio program devoted to writing in Canada. In 2011, she received an Order of Canada for promoting Canadian culture and for advocacy in mental health, adult literacy and reconciliation. That same year, she was named an Honorary Witness for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. She is the co-editor of Speaking My Truth: Reflections on Reconciliation and Residential School, Reconciliation and the Way Forward and Speaking My Truth: A Journey to Reconciliation. She was also given the Achievement in the Aboriginal Community award by Native Counselling Services of Alberta. She holds honorary doctorates from six universities, and is the inaugural recipient of the Margaret Trudeau Award for Mental Health Advocacy. Shelagh is proud to be the Chancellor of the University of Victoria.

Carolyn Thoms

Carolyn Thoms

Order-in-council appointee

Carolyn Thoms has worked in the finance arena for over 30 years and holds the Chartered Financial Analyst and Chartered Professional Accountant designations. She held senior corporate financial positions in the financial guaranty, business valuations and investment industries and in her career has worked in Canada, Bermuda and Switzerland. Thoms is a member of the CFA Institute, Victoria CFA Society, Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada and BC. She is actively engaged in her community. She has served on the Board of Governors of the Victoria Conservatory of Music and previously served as Chair (3-years) and Governor (9-years) of University of Victoria Foundation.

David Zussman

David Zussman

Order-in-council appointee

David Zussman has held executive positions in academia, government and the not for profit sector.  In academia, he held the Jarislowsky Chair in Public Sector Management at the University of Ottawa and served as Dean of the Telfer Faculty of Management and Director of the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at that university. Prior to that, he was a professor in the School of Public Administration at UVic.

In the not for profit sector, Zussman was President of the Public Policy Forum and in government he was Assistant Secretary to the federal Cabinet for Machinery of Government and served as Commissioner of the Public Service. 

David has authored many articles in refereed journals, published a number of books in Canadian public administration and has had a regular public policy column in the Ottawa Citizen and Canadian Government Executive. Currently, Zussman serves as the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sports and is a member of the Environment Canada audit committee. He is also President Emeritus of the Public Policy Forum, an adjunct professor at the School of Public Administration at UVic and Senior Fellow at the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Ottawa.