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Board of Directors

Children's Mental Health

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Child Development Institute is led by a volunteer Board of Directors who generously donate their time, effort and expertise to ensure the highest possible level of service to the children and families we serve.

The Board of Directors of Child Development Institute is comprised of:


President: James Porter
EVP, Head of Canadian & Institutional Business, Cidel Asset Management

James Porter is EVP, Head of Canadian & Institutional Business at Cidel Asset Management, an investment management firm serving institutions, foundations and families in Canada and around the world. He is a former board member of the Integra Foundation, where he also served on the Finance and Towhee Summer Residential Program Committees. James has earned the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation, has a graduate degree in management from Boston University, an undergraduate degree from Bishop’s University and has completed executive education programs at the Wharton School of Business. James lives in Toronto, and along with his family, is an active participant in community life.

Vice President: Melanie Manchee

Melanie Manchee has practiced law in Toronto for over 30 years. She has been extensively involved in professional organizations for lawyers and is appointed by the Superior Court of Justice of Ontario as a Dispute Resolution Officer. She is currently vice-chair of the Toronto Lawyers Association. She has completed the Institute of Corporate Directors course in governance for not-for-profit organizations and has experience as a board member in other organizations in the child and youth mental health sector, most recently as past chair of the Kinark Child and Family Services board.

Treasurer: Jeff Heath
Corporate Director, Consultant

Jeff spent most of his career in the financial services sector, where he held senior roles in finance, risk management and treasury.  He served as Executive Vice-President and Group Treasurer of Bank of Nova Scotia from 2008 until his retirement in 2015. He began his career with Deloitte and is a CPA, CA. Jeff has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Queen's University. Jeff currently serves as Chair of an advisory panel for a federal crown corporation.

Secretary: John Bardawill 
Managing Director, TMG International Inc. 

John Bardawill is the managing director of TMG International, where he helps clients translate marketing, customer experience and change initiatives into meaningful action across their organizations. He has also worked extensively with organizations around the world to provide highly focused solutions that drive revenue and profits. John has over 25 years of international marketing, operations and management experience. Prior to founding TMG, he held senior executive roles at American Express, Thomas Cook, Thomson Publishing and Southam Newspapers and later became a trusted advisor to organizations including Ericsson, Cable & Wireless, Bell Canada, Rogers, and RBC Insurance. John is the chairperson of the Canadian Marketing Association’s Customer Experience Council and has an extensive history of giving back to the communities in which he serves. He has spoken at numerous industry events and educational institutions, including Columbia University, and is the author of numerous articles for a variety of industry publications. John holds an MBA in marketing and finance from the University of Western Ontario. 



Kate Banting
Head of Social Impact and Marketing, The Boston Consulting Group

Kate Banting is currently the Head of Social Impact and Marketing at the Boston Consulting Group. Previously, she was a Project leader in BCG's Toronto office. At BCG, Kate has worked across a variety of industries from retail and consumer goods to transportation, financial services and social impact. Academically, Kate has an HBA degree from the Richard Ivey School of Business at Western University and her MBA from the Harvard Business School. While at Harvard, Kate was involved in the Social Enterprise Initiative, was an Education Pioneer Fellow, and worked with a national after school program in their strategy group to generate external revenues and expand their skill set.

Bindu Dhaliwal 
Ombudsman, BMO Financial Group

Bindu Dhaliwal is the current Ombudsman for BMO Financial Group. Over the years, Bindu has held a variety of legal positions at BMO in areas such as Wealth Management, Corporate Affairs and Sustainability. Prior to joining BMO, Bindu worked at a major Canadian law firm and clerked at the Ontario Court of Appeal. In 2000, Bindu was a recipient of the Governor General's Awards in Commemoration of the Persons Case for her advocacy work. Bindu holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Toronto and a law degree at Queens University. She also completed a graduate program in Social Innovation from the University of Waterloo.

Jeniele Jemmott
Change Manager at Walmart Canada
Through Walmart's community partnerships, Jeniele has collaborated with Breakfast Club of Canada, Children's Miracle Network and Daily Bread Food Bank. Jeniele spent most of her career in financial services, as an HR Consultant, then Change Manager, leading transformational change impacting the internal organization and external customers. Jeniele is passionate about healthcare, mental health and well-being and is partnering with local health professionals to bring attention to these important issues through workshops and events. She attended the University of Toronto and has completed designations in Human Resources Leadership and Change Management.

Brina Ludwig Prout
Strategic Consultant and Certified Human Resources Leader

Brina Ludwig Prout is a Certified Human Resource Leader(CHRL) and HR Executive with an extensive record in organizational change and transformation in the financial services and public sectors. Known for her collaborative, inclusive style, Brina consults to both senior executives in corporate Canada and emerging entrepreneurs and organizations in the Social Innovation field. Brina is passionate about children, diversity and intergenerational collaboration, and has been a member of the Advisory Committee for the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council’s (TRIEC) Connector Program and chaired her childrens’ school council for many years. Brina is a Strategic Advisor to the School for Social Entrepreneurs, Ontario, and an inaugural member of the League of Intrapreneurs, Canada. 

Sharif Mahdy
Executive Director of the Students Commission of Canada/Centre of Excellence for Youth Engagement

The SCC is a national charitable organization that purposefully works with others to ensure that young people's voices are heard and valued. The SCC is also the lead organization for the Centre of Excellence for Youth Engagement (CEYE). The CEYE is a network of youth, organizations and academics focused on identifying and sharing best practices around youth engagement. Sharif leads the SCC/CEYE network with a focus on executing the SCC's ten year strategic plan. Sharif is also accountable for the long-term sustainability of the network. Sharif has his Honors Bachelor of Health Sciences from the University of Western Ontario and his Master's of Arts in Leadership from Royal Roads University. Sharif's thesis focused on identifying a 21st century governance model for the SCC. In his spare time, Sharif volunteers with YMCA Camp Pine Crest and plays dodgeball.

Wendy Miller
Government & Stakeholder Relations, Advocacy, Change Management, System Building at the Ontario Association of Children's Aid Societies (OACAS)

Wendy Miller has 30 years’ experience advancing social justice priorities locally, provincially, and internationally. Currently at OACAS, she leads diverse provincial initiatives for child's aid and Indigenous child wellbeing societies that promote equitable and accountable services for children, youth, and families across Ontario. These include sector-wide planning for new legislation, programs for youth in and transitioning from care, and managing relationships with government and stakeholders. Prior to joining OACAS, Wendy was Director of the Child Advocacy Project at Pro Bono Ontario where she led customized legal initiatives to address systemic barriers for marginalized young people and their families. She holds a Bachelor of Arts, Political Science from McGill University, and completed the Open Policy Institute's Public Policy for Advocates and Activists program.

Vivek Sarma
Principal in the Toronto office of the Boston Consulting Group (BCG)

Vivek Sarma is a Principal in the Toronto office of the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). His work at BCG has focused on Financial Institutions, Corporate Development and Turnarounds and Large Scale Change. Prior to BCG Vivek worked at KPMG in private equity due diligence and corporate finance, and at Livingston International, a portfolio company of CPP, in corporate development. Outside of work Vivek has been the treasurer and General board member of Parkdale Activity Recreation Centre, a drop-in centre specializing in mental health and addiction located in the Parkdale neighbourhood of Toronto. Vivek holds an MBA from the London Business School and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Canada. He is also a Canadian Chartered Accountant. 

Dan Thomson
Partner, WeirFoulds LLP

Dan Thomson is a partner in the Corporate Group at WeirFoulds with a transaction-based practice that focuses on banking and financial services, mergers and acquisitions, private equity and corporate/commercial matters. Dan has more than 20 years of legal and business experience, including nearly 10 years at an international law firm, two years running a commercial business unit for the Canadian subsidiary of a multi-national Fortune 300 insurance company, five years running his own legal practice, and five years at a well-known mid-size Toronto firm. Dan also practised in London, England, where he focused primarily on foreign investment into Canada and M&A transactions involving Canadian entities. Since 2006, Dan has been invited annually to teach a business law course at The Schulich School of Business at York University in Toronto. Dan has been nominated by Schulich students for the student's annual Teaching Excellence Award.