MPA Society Board
Ron Byron has been a member of MPA for about 13 years and a resident of the Hampton for over 5 years. His interests include music and computers and he is currently writing his first novel. He is originally from Ontario and has lived in B.C. for 16 years.
With the help of MPA, specifically by MHEAP, the Community Resource Centre and the Hampton, Ron has turned his life around. He is concentrating of community volunteering and thoroughly enjoys giving back by serving as a member of the MPA Board of Directors.
Growing up in Kitsilano in the 1970s, David was vaguely aware of MPA's presence without having any inkling that he would one day be a member. Now, having benefitted from MPA's services since 2009, David hopes to contribute to the organization's future through service to the Board as a member representative. Despite having experienced a lot of growth and change over the decades, MPA remains a dedicated group of people helping other people to help themselves. Who wouldn't want to be part of that? Outside the realm of mental health, David's interests include information technology, human rights and social justice, with a focus on LGBT issues.
Joe Chu is a Vancouver police officer with 27 years of service. He has worked in Patrol, Administration, Investigations and is currently the Sergeant for the Neighborhood Police Team in Vancouver's Westside. Also as a crisis negotiator, he had brought about peaceful resolutions to many highly volatile situations, some involving individuals suffering from mental illness. Joe served on the Board of the BC Crime Prevention Association as well as SUCCESS (an immigrant settlement agency). He also served on several committees with the People’s Law School helping marginalized individuals overcome legal and societal barriers. Joe was attracted to the MPA Society by its member-centered approach and philosophy and looks forward to having the opportunity to contribute as a member of its Board.
Damian is a retired businessman having owned and operated D & J Utility Land Consulting Company for the past several years. His company provided property consulting services to both BC Hydro and B C Transmission Corporation. In prior years Damian was the Properties Division Manager at BC Hydro. As Properties Division Manager, he oversaw the management all of BC Hydro’s real estate assets including the purchase and sale of all land, buildings, transmission and distribution line rights of ways and reservoir lands. Damian has a keen interest in mental health matters as he has advocated and continues to advocate for family members who have mental health challenges. He recognizes the difficulty many people have in navigating our mental health system, including gaining access to appropriate housing and having support needs met. Damian is a graduate of the Diploma Program in Urban Land Economics-University of British Columbia.
Melissa is a strong believer in volunteerism and sharing skills with the local community. All people need to feel valued, need a place, need a home and a sense of belonging. Healthy communities recognize that everyone has a contribution to make. Some community members may require a bit more support and some may be able to contribute a bit. Melissa is keenly interested in supporting the MPA Society to achieve its mission.
Melissa has previously served on the Boards of the Dr. Peter Aids Foundation and the College of Physical Therapists of BC.
Melissa works for BC Hydro in project delivery and has a Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Arts.
Until 2014 John was the Chief Legal Officer or equivalent with six major corporations in British Columbia, Ontario and the United Kingdom. His experience spans the retail, building products, food processing, shipping and energy industries. He also has significant and varied corporate governance experience. Since 1981 he has been a lawyer and more recently became a certified director.
John was a director of Family Services of Greater Vancouver until 2014 and has been a director of Encorp Pacific, a product stewardship corporation, since 2014 and the MPA Society since 2015.
John has a Law degree and Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of British Columbia.
Johnson Ma currently works as a teaching faculty for the PsyD program at Adler University. He is a trilingual therapist and a mental health service provider who has experience in providing community-based mental health treatment and training to diverse underserved populations in Hawaii, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Vancouver, British Columbia. His longstanding passion for diverse mental health issues stemmed from his own immigrant experiences which has allowed him to develop personal empathy and social awareness of common socio-economical and emotional challenges faced by immigrants and marginalized groups. As a result, he is a strong proponent for psychosocial rehabilitation that promotes personal recovery and community integration. Johnson is deeply honored and excited to have an opportunity to serve as a new MPA Board member. He hopes to contribute his knowledge of mental health issues while collaborating with fellow board of directors to continue improving the quality of lives among MPA members..
Mary is a CPA, CGA, who has been working in the non-profit sector since 2008. She is currently the Director of Finance and Administration for Imagine 1 Day, a charity that supports education initiatives in Ethiopia. Mary was drawn to MPA Society because of the strength of the organization and the calibre of the services and people there, and is excited to the part of the MPA Society team.