The Board of Directors is responsible for leading COTBC and ensuring the College fulfils the duties and objects as set out in the Health Professions Act. The Board provides strategic leadership, guiding the organization’s direction, ensuring necessary resources, and monitoring performance to meet the College’s mandate. The Board and Registrar / CEO work together to ensure that COTBC fulfils its public protection role.
The Board consists of three public members who are appointed by the provincial government and six occupational therapists who are elected by registrants of the College. Registrants elected to the Board do not represent any constituency or profession interests; they hold office to protect the public interest.
Board of Directors
Public Members (Appointed)
- Gayle Nye – Victoria
- Mary O’Callaghan, Chair – Vancouver
- Jeff Boniface – North Vancouver
- Tysen LeBlond – Terrace
- Eileen Goudy – Kelowna
- Debbie Ruggiero (Vice-Chair) – Kelowna
- Philipp Santiago – Vancouver
Public Members (Appointed)
Gayle Nye – Victoria
Gayle Nye is a workers’ advocate with 30 years’ experience within BC’s labour movement. A former Education and Equity & Human Rights Officer with the BC Government and Services Employees Union, she served on numerous union-management steering committees to bring about Employment Equity in the BC Public Service. That work included the joint development and delivery of Anti-Racism and Harassment Prevention education throughout worksites province-wide and further specialization in cross-cultural communications and conflict resolution.
Gayle is a founding member of the Asian Canadian Labour Alliance in BC and served on the Employment Insurance Board of Referees as a Canadian Labour Congress appointee. From 2009 – 2019 she served with Antidote Multi-Racial and Indigenous Girls and Women’s Network as Board Treasurer.
Since retirement as Labour Coordinator with United Way Greater Victoria in 2019, Gayle has been coordinating a Victoria Chinatown History Project. For recreation and playing to her ‘heart’s delight’ Gayle is a member of Uminari Taiko, a group dedicated to the art of Japanese Taiko through teaching and performance.
Gayle was re-appointed to the Board on March 4, 2021.
Mary O’Callaghan – Vancouver
Mary O’Callaghan is a Principal with Devonshire Advisory and provides consulting services to clients throughout BC. Her practice focuses on Family Enterprise Succession assisting families to transition ownership and management of their business to the next generation of family members. She also works with clients on governance, strategic planning, and organization development.
Mary retired in 2015 as a partner with KPMG’s Management Consulting practice. She holds Bachelor of Science (Honours) and Master of Business Administration degrees from the University of British Columbia, is a Fellow Certified Management Consultant and a certified Family Enterprise Advisor. Mary previously served on the Boards of Directors of the College of Occupational Therapists of British Columbia, the Minerva Foundation for BC Women, and on the Council of the Institute of Certified Management Consultants in BC.
Mary was re-appointed to the board on February 1, 2021 and currently sits as the Chair.
Elected Board Members
Jeff Boniface – North Vancouver
Jeff is an occupational therapist with over 24 years of experience. He is the owner and director of a community-based occupational therapy private practice in Greater Vancouver.
Jeff recently completed his Master of Science in Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of British Columbia. He is also an Associate Academic Fieldwork Coordinator and Clinical Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Medicine, Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy.
Jeff is a board member for the Canadian Society of Occupational Scientists and the Occupational Therapy Now Editorial Board.
Jeff began his three-year term on February 1, 2018. He is the elected board member on the Patient Relations, Standards and Ethics Committee, Discipline Committee, and is also an active writer on the Case Development Sub-Committee.
Eileen Goudy – Victoria
Eileen Goudy works as a Health Care Consultant with ERG Consulting. Before this, she worked for Island Health, holding leadership positions for over 28 years. Eileen has experience in many clinical areas, such as surgery, infection prevention and control, cardiac, geriatrics and mental health. She was an engaged leader in Quality and Patient Safety and Patient Care Experience. Upon retiring, she worked with small organizations to help them be accreditation ready.
Eileen is a Part-Time surveyor with Accreditation Canada and has been involved in surveys, education sessions, and advisor roles, and is a mentor for new surveyors. She works nationally and internationally. She has worked with Accreditation Canada since 2006 and has had the opportunity to serve on various committees and work with Advisor teams.
Eileen served on the Board of Directors of the Registered Nurses of BC (now the College of Registered Nurses of BC) as District Director and Vice-President. She was a member of the Registration Committee. She is on the Board of Island Community Mental Health in Victoria and chairs the Quality Committee. Eileen is a member of the Inquiry Committee of the College of Occupational Therapists of BC.
Tysen LeBlond – Terrace
Tysen LeBlond practices in publicly funded healthcare for Northern Health, as a clinician and healthcare leader overseeing occupational therapy services in acute care, long-term care, and primary care settings.
He completed his occupational therapy education at the University of Mary (North Dakota) in 2009. Tysen also completed an MHS (Healthcare Leadership) from Athabasca University with the goal of continuing to add skills to his leadership toolbox.
Recently, Tysen took the role of Executive Lead for Rehabilitation Services Programs for Northern Health, which provides him the opportunity to oversee the challenging work OTs take on, in a rural context. As a northerner, he appreciates the chance to be a resourceful problem solver within a closely-knit healthcare team.
Debbie Ruggiero – Kelowna
Debbie graduated from the University of British Columbia in 1989. Since 2001, she has successfully established a trusted private practice built on the foundations of occupational therapy. ADL Occupational Therapy Inc. provides a variety of medical legal and community rehabilitation services in the Southern Interior. From participation in diverse community organizations to mentoring occupational therapists and other allied professionals, Debbie is a willing volunteer and recognized leader. Throughout her career, whatever “hat” she wears, she always keeps the principles and values of occupational therapy at the forefront.
First elected in November 2015, Debbie began her second, three-year term on February 1, 2018 and is currently serving as Chair of the Quality Assurance Committee. Working with the COTBC Board and Quality Assurance Committee with the lens of health care regulation and public protection has been an invaluable experience. Debbie looks forward to continued board and committee work and involvement with all of the individuals who generously give their time and leadership to COTBC.
Philipp Santiago – Vancouver
Philipp Santiago works as an occupational therapist mainly in Mental Health and Substance Use (MHSU).
He has practiced in acute, community, and tertiary MHSU in three of BC’s health authorities, in front-line service provision and leadership, as a Practice Coordinator, Clinical Resource Therapist, Clinical Lead, and now as a Clinical Instructor.
Values of perseverance, life-long learning, connectedness, efficiency, evocation, and creativity drive Philipp. In his 14-year career as an OT, he has applied principles of Rehabilitation and Recovery, Cultural Competency & Safety, Trauma and Resiliency Informed Practice, Team-Based Care, and Motivational Interviewing, for which he holds Train-the-Trainer Status (2019), via the Centre for Collaboration, Motivation and Innovation.
Philipp has served as a COTBC Continuing Competency Exam Sub-Committee Member (2014-2016), UBC Occupational Science & Occupational Therapy Clinical Faculty Member and Small Group Tutorial Facilitator (2018-2020), and Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists – BC MHSU Practice Network Meeting Chair (2019-2021).