BCLTA Board and Staff

Please contact the Executive Director, Jerrilyn Kirk, with any membership questions including access to BCLTA board meeting agendas and reports or to connect with any member of the BCLTA Board of Directors.

2022 BCLTA Board Meeting Schedule

  • January 25th
  • April 12th
  • September 13th
  • December 6th

Board of Directors

Photo of Mike Gagel

Mike Gagel

President 2021-2023
Board Chair, Prince George Public Library Board
On the BCLTA board since 2016

Mike earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Nursing at the University of British Columbia and worked as a nurse for almost 20 years at the BC Cancer Agency, Vancouver Coastal Health, and as a sole proprietor consultant. In the second half of his nursing career Mike progressively focused on staff education through the use of technology. Next, he worked at the BC School Trustees Association (BCSTA) where he was responsible for all of the Association’s technology needs and also supported various trustee committees. Mike currently works for Northern Health as their Regional Manager, Communicable Disease.

 
As a volunteer, Mike has been on the BCLTA board since 2016, and serves as Chair of the Prince George Public Library Board and its Policy and Governance Commitee, and sits on its Local History Committee. Mike is active in other areas of his community as well. He volunteered with Parent Advisory Councils at the school and district levels, and has been a Scouter with Scouts Canada since 2011. As a Scouter, Mike has been successful with grant applications totaling over $12,000 to support Scouting initiatives in and around Prince George.
 
As an avid reader, Mike’s interests include medieval European history, and science fiction and murder-mystery novels. He takes full advantage of his Hoopla and OverDrive accounts, and has downloaded many, many audio and ebooks. Some of his other interests include Maker initiatives, birding, backyard astronomy, and travel.

Josie Chuback

Director 2021-2023
Whistler Public Library Board
On the BCLTA board since 2021

Josie is a Trustee with the Whistler Public Library, serving as Chair of the Human Resources and Governance Committee  for the past four years. She has played a significant role in the development of board policies, board recruitment and training, performance development and succession planning.

In her second year as Chair of Interlink Federation of Libraries (Metro Vancouver, Fraser Valley, Sea to Sky, Sunshine Coast) Josie works with Board member appointees and the executive director in guiding the work of the organization in collaborating on shared programs & services and most notably supporting staff training and development initiatives.

Josie retired from municipal work in Parks & Recreation and currently provides consulting services in project planning & management, and facilitation in community development and a variety of community services.

Josie is also an active volunteer with Whistler Blackcomb as a mountain host and as an ambassador with Whistler Sport Legacies and currently serves as chair of the Recreation Leisure Services Advisory Committee to the municipality. In her spare time Josie hikes, bikes, skis and rides horses.

“I believe libraries are fundamental to community resilience and community building and are valued as pillars of strength, foundations of truth and agents of change. I believe in contributing where I can to these values and to build stronger bonds and understanding within and outside the field.”

With gratitude & respect,  Josie acknowledges that she lives, works & plays on the shared, unceded territory of the Lil̓wat7úl (Lil’wat) Nation and the Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) Nation.


David Clark

Director 2021-2023
Cranbrook Public Library Board
On the BCLTA board since 2019

David brings a wealth of skills to his board work, is insurance and mutual funds licensed, and is a Certified Financial Planner®, with over 20 years experience with a national company.

David’s passion for public libraries began when he received his first library card for the Chilliwack Public Library at the age of six. As well as being the Chair of the Cranbrook Public Library Board, David is the board vice-chair for a local charitable thrift store.


Elysia Glover

Director 2021-2023
Greater Victoria Public Library Board
On the BCLTA board since 2019

Elysia (she/her) is a settler of English, Scottish, German and Austrian descent living on the unceded, traditional and ancestral territories of the Lekwungen-speaking peoples, today known as the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations. A citizen representative for the City of Victoria to the Greater Victoria Public Library (GVPL)  Board, Elysia is grateful for the opportunity to serve libraries, their communities and their trustees through her work on the GVPL and BCLTA boards. 

Elysia is passionate about the power of access to inclusive, effective education and has worked as a teacher, facilitator and learning assistant in a variety of school and community settings in Canada, the U.S. and South East Asia. Growing up, access to libraries was fundamental in cultivating her lifelong love of learning. She is a graduate of the United World College of South East Asia and she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with honours and a teaching certification from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY. 

She currently works as the Executive Director of a non-profit working to grow economic opportunities for communities facing barriers. She also co-produces the largest spoken word poetry festival for youth on Vancouver Island. Outside of work, she loves writing, spending time outside, and supporting the local arts community.


Louise Hearty

Director 2020-2022
Surrey Public Library Board
On the BCLTA board since 2020

Louise recently retired as the Director of Access Transit Service Delivery at Coast Mountain Bus Company/TransLink, where she was employed for 28 years in various roles throughout the organization, most recently as Director Access Transit, including being responsible for overseeing the operations of HandyDART including customer feedback, eligibility, and implementing many new initiatives.

Louise has been a Trustee on the Surrey Library Board since January 2018, and serves on the Finance Committee to the Board.  In addition, Louise volunteers her time on non-profit boards and with community organizations assisting new Canadians. Louise has successfully completed numerous courses in Conflict Resolution, Negotiation and Mediation through the Justice Institute of BC.  Louise has experience in fundraising and grant submissions through her volunteer work.  Louise is a life long user and lover of libraries.  In her spare time Louise is fortunate to be able to spend a lot of time with her four grandchildren, two 3 year olds and two 1 year olds!


Harlan Pruden

Director 2020-2022
Vancouver Public Library Board
On the BCLTA board since 2020

Harlan (nēhiyo/First Nations Cree Nation), works with and for the Two-Spirit community locally, nationally and internationally. Currently, Harlan is an Educator at Chee Mamuk, an Indigenous public health program at BC Centre for Disease Control and is also a co-founder of the Two-Spirit Dry Lab, North America’s first research group/lab that exclusively focuses on Two-Spirit people, communities and/or experiences. Harlan is also the Managing Editor of the TwoSpiritJournal.com and an Advisory Member for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research’s Institute of Gender and Health.

Harlan serves on the Vancouver Public Library’s board. Before relocating to Vancouver in 2015, Harlan was co-founder and a Director of NYC community based organization, the NorthEast Two-Spirit Society and was a President Obama appointee to the US Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) and provided advice, information, and recommendations to the Secretary of Health & Human Services and the White House. (In December 2018, Harlan was (happily) fired/dismissed from PACHA by Mr. Trump via Fedex.)


Rhonda Sherwood Headshot

Rhonda Sherwood

Director, 2020-2022
Vancouver Public Library Board
On the BCLTA board since 2018

Rhonda brings thirty years of wealth advisement expertise and passion to Raymond James. Rhonda’s career began in 1989 at a bank-owned firm. Throughout her career, she advanced into many different roles, including: personal banking officer, financial planner and investment manager. Prior to joining Raymond James in 2016, Rhonda spent fifteen years as a trusted and successful wealth advisor at the full-service brokerage arm of her previous firm.

Rhonda graduated from Simon Fraser University with a Liberal Arts diploma, and has additionally earned her Certified Financial Planner®, Financial Management Advisor, and the Responsible Investment Advisor Certification (RIAC). RIAC certification provides foundational and in-depth training on the identification and implementation of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors to consider when making investment decisions. Rhonda is also securities and insurance licensed.

Rhonda is a passionate advocate within her industry. She has previously volunteered her expertise on a panel for a self-regulating body that oversees and sets financial planning standards and practices. She also puts a high value on education and has acted in an advisory capacity with a local college’s personal finance program and with an industry led publication. Rhonda currently mentors young adults and women through different associations.

Rhonda believes in the importance of giving back to her community. She is a trustee for the Vancouver Public Library Board and director/treasurer for the BC Library Trustees Association. She has previously volunteered on the City of Vancouver’s Women’s Advisory Committee, a civic agency appointed by Vancouver City Council to advise council and staff on enhancing access and inclusion for women and girls to fully participate in city services and civic life.

Rhonda cares deeply about the rights and well-being of animals, practicing veganism (previously vegetarianism), over the past three decades and devoting her time and resources to many animal advocacy projects.


Laura Vilness

Director 2021-2023
Pender Island Public Library Board
On the BCLTA board since 2021

Laura is a retired educator with 37 years of experience as a teacher, consultant and administrator in Saskatchewan school divisions. Her personal and professional education includes: B.A., B.Ed,. M.Ed., and Ed.D. Laura has extensive experience with local, regional and provincial boards in public and post-secondary education.

Laura moved to Pender Island in 2018 and has dived into community activities such as the Pender Island Arts Society, the Ptarmigan Gallery, quilting, knitting, photography and whatever else engages her interest. She loves living on the coast of the Salish Sea and the traditional lands of the W’sáneć peoples.

Laura has been on the Pender Island Public Library Board since 2019 and is in her second year as board chair. When she moved to Pender Island one of the first things she did was go into the local library and get a library card. Then she applied to be a volunteer and, finally, a board member. Libraries have always been her happy place, a place of calm, reflection and engagement and she is honoured to be on the Pender Island Public Library Board and the Board of the BCLTA.


Staff

Jerrilyn Kirk sitting on a bench.

Jerrilyn Kirk

Executive Director

jerrilyn.kirk@bclta.ca

Jerrilyn has spent many years serving in various local government capacities including Tumbler Ridge Council, the Peace River Regional District board, North Central Local Government Association, Union of British Columbia Municipalities and Federation of Canadian Municipalities as well as serving as President of the BC Library Trustees Association, Vice Chair of the Lakeview Credit Union board and Vice President of the Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation as well as race director of the Emperors Challenge Mountain race

Jerrilyn places tremendous value on building relationships between and among individuals and groups, creating a stronger more dynamic community of organizations ensuring their sustainability. She is thrilled to be able to put her connections and skills to work for benefit of BCLTA

Head Shot of Babs Kelly

Babs Kelly

Learning and Development

babs.kelly@bclta.ca

Babs (she/her) brings over 30 years of experience facilitating workshops, community forums, and organizational process. She has done extensive community-driven and academic research projects on governance structures, culture, and process and gets a kick out of supporting excellence in fiduciary responsibility, accountability, and transparency while challenging “best practices” and the status quo. Babs is grateful for the opportunity to meet and work with the diversity of people across BC who want to serve their communities through the governance of public libraries.

Babs has served as a director on a variety of boards, including the Saskatchewan Library Association, the North Shore Restorative Justice Society, and PACE Vancouver. She is currently a member of the Working Group on Intellectual Freedom at the Centre for Free Expression, Ryerson University, is an executive with her constituency association, and serves on the board of directors for the POUNDS Project.

Babs is grateful to be situated on the traditional and unceded territory of the Lheidli T’enneh, part of the Dakelh First Nations. (Prince George)

Photo of Jan Thomas

Jan Thomas

Bookkeeper

Jan has served as the administrative assistant for Heritage BC for more than 25 years, ably supporting this not-for-profit organization to deliver annual and regional conferences, annual general meetings, newsletters, website, and government advocacy activities to a province-wide membership.  BCLTA is lucky to have her in-depth knowledge of association management at work for BC public libraries.