Chris Schultz, Board Chair
Chris Schultz has been on the board of Cowichan Valley Youth Services since 2016, most recently serving as Board Chair. He has a finance degree from Simon Fraser University and is a Certified Financial Planner. Chris has been working in the investment industry for over 25 years. He also has previous board experience with the Peace Arch Hospice Society in White Rock. Chris has resided in the Cowichan Valley since 2007 with wife Leanne and two daughters.
Brian Badesso, Treasurer
Brian is a software engineer with a degree in Engineering Physics from the University of British Columbia. To the CVYS board Brian brings a thoughtful perspective, previous youth mentorship experience, and significant administrative & technical knowledge. Brian believes strongly in CVYS’s mission, and is dedicated to helping the organization thrive so that the youth in our community have access to the best services possible.
Grant McKinnon, Past Chair
Grant was born in the Cowichan Valley and graduated from Cowichan High School in 1983. He attended UBC and graduated with a degree in Forestry. He worked in that industry for several years before moving back to the Island in the early 1990’s to join his family business in building supplies and wood product manufacturing. At one time the business had 500 employees and 10 locations managed by Grant and his brothers. The business was sold in 2019 and Grant officially retired from the business at the end of 2020. Grant has served on several NFP boards and continues to serve on industry boards such as BC Wood.
Grant is married with 3 adult children and enjoys woodworking, fishing, and golfing. He has been on the board of CVYS since 2016 and is currently the past chair. He strongly believes in the mission of CVYS in preventative care for youth.
Richard Neil, Past Treasurer
A retired social worker, Richard was raised on RCAF bases across Canada, attended high school in Beloeil, Quebec, and was educated at McGill and UBC.
Richard has been involved with progressive and preventative community initiatives throughout his career. He co-founded Campus Nursery Co-op Daycare (UBC), and was instrumental in the development of Total Education School, Kitsun Co-operative Housing Association, and Bamfield Residential Attendance Program, among others.
Richard has served as a Board Director for Community Options Society/Cowichan Valley Youth Services since 1994, including terms as Board Chair and Board Treasurer. He is a gardener, a GO player, a stamp collector, and a lover of music and cats.
Rob Purgavie, Director
As a teenager I remember the beginnings of CVYS (then COS) through the drop in center on Canada Avenue. In Grade 11 I left Duncan to attend an alternate school in the Yukon and after graduating there worked in the trades. In the 80’s I was offered a position in a pre-employment program for youth and in the years following, my love for the outdoors led to working with youth in a program based on Outward Bound principles. Inspired by the work I saw happening in local alternate schools I returned to school getting my education degree in 1994. As a teacher in alternate programs I worked closely with CVYS as they were a powerful resource for youth in the Valley. I joined the board in 2004 and have continued in that role since retiring in 2016.
Elise Ketch, Director
I have lived in the Cowichan Valley for 46 years and have been a board member of CVYS since 2017. I value community, connection, and access to services for all. I graduated from The University of Victoria with a Bachelors Degree in Education. I have predominately taught teens in my 25-year teaching career and I enjoy the energy, fun, and resilience that comes from this dynamic time in life. Some teaching highlights include providing small group and specialized learning opportunities for youth and helping students make connections with community services beyond school.
Pam Richmond, Director
Pam is a long time resident of the Cowichan Valley. She lived and worked in Vancouver and northern BC for several years after she graduated from UVic with a degree in Social Work but always gravitated back to the island. Pam has worked with youth and families throughout her whole career, working with private and government agencies and family groups. This included a brief stint working with adults in Vancouver’s downtown Eastside. After working in both the public and non-profit sectors, Pam is currently a private contractor and teaches Sexual Health and Body Science in many local schools and across Vancouver Island. For a switch that involves many different crossover skills, Pam has managed commercial buildings for the last 13 years and has experience in residential property management as well.
Prior to having a family Pam was a board member for Community Options Society (previous name for CVYS) for 3 years in the 1990’s.
Pam enjoys spending time with family, her cats and chickens, gardening, learning to SUP, and travelling with her partner when possible. She loves that she is able to spend time working directly with youth in classrooms and groups, while also volunteering with CVYS and seeing a different aspect of youth work.