What We Do


The Stop’s Board of Directors are an engaged group of community-minded volunteers. They come from diverse professional backgrounds, and bring expertise in law, human resources, business, fundraising, community services, and advocacy—to name just a few.

We’re always looking to add new Directors to our talented team. Contact Rachel for more information.

Board Of Directors

Sarah is one of Canada’s leading environmental lawyers, certified by the Law Society of Upper Canada as a Specialist in Environmental Law. She has extensive experience in all aspects of environmental law, including strategic advice on environmental and social impact assessments, environmental approvals, energy approvals, contaminated sites, environmental class actions, and aboriginal risk assessments. Sarah is Past Chair of the Environmental Law Section of the Ontario Bar Association and the Chair of the National Environmental, Energy, and Resource Law Section of the Canadian Bar Association.

Sean is Director of Business Development at Cisco Systems, focused on healthcare innovation, and a former Cisco Director of Legal Services. Sean has worked in the technology and telecommunications sector for over 22 years, and in the public service and employment law fields before that. He is a former Treasurer and member of the board of governors of the National Theatre School of Canada. Sean’s work at Cisco has focused on the use of information and communications technology to improve healthcare and mental health services, promote sustainable urbanization, and transform countries and citizen engagement. Sean’s commitment to community, social development, and poverty reduction, and his passion for local, sustainable, and good food, led him and his wife Renee to become supporters of The Stop. They and their daughters can be found at The Stop’s Farmers’ Market most Saturdays.

George is a seasoned investment professional with more than 20 years of financial services experience. George is currently a partner at InstarAGF, a leading infrastructure private equity firm based in Toronto. He has diverse experience working and managing within an entrepreneurial environment while implementing industry best practices and is keen to lend his resources and experience to The Stop. George has been involved with The Stop for the past few years and is a founding member of The Stop’s Finance Committee. He grew up near The Stop and has a strong affinity with the local community in which The Stop provides its services and programs. George studied at the University of Waterloo and is a Chartered Accountant. He is married with one son.

Stacy is a partner at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP, where her practice focuses on investment funds, corporate finance, securities regulation, and public company transactions. She is actively involved in the women@blakes network, which was established to assist women lawyers in achieving business success. Stacy believes that good things come from time spent with others around the kitchen table and is working with her three young children to ensure they understand the importance of healthy food and nutrition for everyone.

Nuria is Executive Director of the Motion Picture Theatre Associations of Canada. She has done PR and communications for some of Canada’s top media, film, and charitable organizations. She was born in Argentina, and has studied in the United States, France, and Canada.

Alison Brennan is an esteemed human resources professional with over 30 years of experience in the Financial Services sector. Alison has worked for large and small organizations including Marsh Canada Limited, TAL Private Management, and Maritime Life, and her passion is coaching leaders to drive positive change and deliver excellent results

Alison holds a Certified Human Resources Leader Designation from the Human Resources Professionals Association, and a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) Degree from Queen’s University. She was an elected member of St. Matthew Parent Council for 4 years, and serves as an active mentor to many human resource professionals.

Shae has over 15 years of experience in the non-profit and social services sectors, including 4 years at The Stop in the Community Services program. For Shae, working with people, is a way of life. She currently serves as the Member Services Coordinator for a student housing co-operative in Toronto. Shae is a past board member for the YWCA Toronto and of the West End Food Co-op, where she was able to merge her passion for both food and community development. It’s this same dedication to her community, and to contributing her energy and focus on helping to improve the lives of others, that brings Shae back to the table and back to The Stop as a board member, a partner, and a friend.

As Principal and Wealth Advisor at Stonegate Private Counsel, Koel brings extensive experience in managing the financial affairs of business owners, professionals and other Canadian families. Koel holds an MBA from the Michael G. Degroote School of Business at McMaster University and an Honours degree in Commerce from Queen’s University. Most recently, Koel has been awarded the coveted Fellow of the Canadian Securities Institute (FCSI) designation, placing him in the top five percent of all financial advisors in Canada. Koel resides in Toronto’s Little Italy community. During his spare time, Koel is involved with The Family Enterprise Exchange, The Stop, and serves on the ROM’s Executive Board for its Royal Patrons’ Circle.

Joshna Maharaj is a chef, a two-time TEDx speaker, and activist who wants to help everyone have a better relationship with their food. She believes strongly in the power of chefs and social gastronomy to bring values of hospitality, sustainability, and social justice to the table to nourish people and communities.

Recently, Joshna has been working with hospitals and universities in Toronto to build new models for institutional food procurement, production and service. She is currently working on a book to capture the lessons and experience and create a shareable blueprint for changing institutional food systems around the globe.

Most recently, Michael launched and led The Story Lab Canada—the content specialist agency within Dentsu Aegis Network. He presented the agency’s core offerings in branded content, and led the delivery of customized, cross-channel, content-driven marketing solutions for clients including P&G, Loblaw/Shoppers Drug Mart, Target, GM, and Diageo across multiple media channels (including television, digital, print, in-store, and OOH), with multiple media partners (such as Rogers, Bell, Shaw, Google/YouTube, AOL, MSN, TC Media, and others).

Prior to that, Michael led his own start-up, Thread Branded Inc., a boutique branded content studio that he launched in 2010 and was acquired by the agency in 2013. Michael’s move into content marketing was inspired by his vision to bring together his past experience from two sectors, strategically growing and running television production and distribution companies, combined with the development, sale, and management of major sponsorship marketing programs.

Chris is the President and founder of ESC, a corporate services company servicing more than 5,000 professional clients across Canada with due diligence and public record solutions for legal transactions, compliance, and risk management. Before joining ESC, Chris spearheaded corporate strategy, growth, and corporate development at Teranet Inc. As a founding member of Teranet’s original team, Chris helped bring about innovations in multiple areas of real estate public records, including mortgage risk management, property valuation, and legal corporate services. He led substantial growth for Teranet, with successful acquisitions in the area of real estate legal services and corporate services. Having lived all over the world as a son of a Canadian diplomat, prior to leading Corporate Development at Teranet, Chris founded Teranet’s international consulting division that successfully delivered Land Registry programs on behalf of the World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, and CIDA in the Middle East, Caribbean, and Eastern Europe.

A passionate idea-driven entrepreneur, Chris brings energy, enthusiasm, and in-depth experience in listening, learning, and conceiving of new products and services for businesses, regardless of the time zone. Married to Christina and a father of four (three children and a golden retriever), Chris has spent a decade on sports fields as a coach, and as a volunteer for his children’s activities. As his children grow up, he is turning his attention to growing things in fields at his farm in Creemore and to charitable causes that address his interest in sustainable food security.