The Boys and Girls Club of Ottawa is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.
All Board members contribute by lending their expertise in areas of governance, programs, fundraising, communications, legal, IT, community development, strategic planning, finance, and human resource development.
Stephen Beckta is the proprietor of Beckta, one of Canada’s premier fine dining restaurants, along with the critically acclaimed, small-plates Play food & wine, and the upscale nighbourhood restaurant Gezellig. After graduating with honours from Algonquin College’s Sommelier program, Stephen departed Ottawa to hone his skills in New York City for four years with the top players in the restaurant industry. Stephen managed the wine programs and dining rooms at Café Boulud working for the celebrated chef Daniel Boulud, followed by two years with renowned restaurateur Danny Meyer at Eleven Madison Park before returning to his native city.
Beckta, Play and Gezellig have received glowing reviews in The New York Times, The Globe and Mail, The National Post and countless others, being applauded for their extraordinary hospitality and inspired cooking. Just two months after opening, enRoute Magazine rated Beckta dining & wine the fourth-best new restaurant in Canada. Other accolades include thirteen consecutive CAA/AAA four-diamond awards as well as being named the #1 restaurant in Ottawa by Ottawa Magazine three years in a row. Most recently, Beckta was named “Ottawa’s Signature Restaurant”, by the Ottawa Citizen. Play was named “Favourite Fine Dining Restaurant” at the Ottawa Restaurant Awards, and Gezellig was said to “redefine the neighbourhood dining experience” in its inaugural review in the Ottawa Citizen.
Stephen has personally contributed to his industry in many ways: sitting on the board of ORHMA, teaching at Algonquin College, sitting on the advisory committee for the Hospitality School at Algonquin College, mentoring dozens of burgeoning restaurant entrepreneurs and donating his time to various local and national causes whose values he shares. He is most engaged with the Boys and Girls Club of Ottawa, being an active member of theboard since 2011, and was just named incoming Board Chair in 2017. Professionally, Stephen has been named Top Independent Restaurateur in Ontario by the Ontario Hostelry Institute, won the National Terroir "Outstanding Service Professional" Award, won the Bill Joe Restaurateur of the Year Award in Ottawa by ORHMA, named one of Ottawa Life Magazine’s Top 50 people twice, one of Ottawa’s Top 40 under 40 by the Ottawa Business Journal and Algonquin College’s Alumni of the year, giving his college’s convocation address the same year.
Meredithe had a 19 year career with IBM, spanning Australia, US, European HQs and South East Asia with a career focused mainly in financial planning and services consulting. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of NSW in Sydney Australia and a Masters of Management from JL Kellogg School of Management from Northwestern University in Chicago.
Her previous board experience was as a Board Trustee, Treasurer and Chair of Strategic Planning with the Valley Montessori School, covering 500 students in a private school in California – followed by a similar position as Board Trustee and Vice President at the Ottawa Montessori School (OMS) until 2010. Meredithe was a Board Member from 2010 through to 2012 for the Ronald McDonald House Charities located in Ottawa. She is currently a member of the Board of Governors at Ashbury College, an independent co-ed university prep school in Ottawa.
Steve Bell, Deputy Chief, Investigations & Support is a 21-year veteran of the Ottawa Police Service who is actively involved in the community through several organizations. His work and life experience give him a solid understanding of the community’s needs and his strategic and managerial skills make him an asset to the BGCO.
Brittany Forsyth works in the tech industry as the Senior Vice President of HR at Shopify. She has been leading the HR department since 2014 but has been with the company since 2010.
Brittany thrives within the growth phase of a company's life cycle and joined the BGCO Board in late 2016 with a wealth of knowledge on employee relations, organizational development, performance management, and benefit and legal compliance, having obtained a Bachelor's of Commerce from Carleton University.
Born and raised in Ottawa, Sean’s life in construction began in the mid 1980’s, working as a summer student on the jobsites of the family firm. After earning a 4 year BA Honors degree at the University of Western Ontario, Sean returned to the company full time. Between 1990 and 2002, Sean took his on-site experience into the office, learning the science and art of estimating and project management. The experience of these years allowed Sean to take over leadership of the firm in 2003, where he maintains the position of CEO today.
Landmark projects undertaken by Sean include: Hopewell Ave Public School, the Plant Recreation Center, the Beechwood Memorial Center, the Irish Ambassador’s Residence, and the new Ottawa Humane Society building. Sean’s previous Board experience includes service on two Boards: the Bishop Hamilton School and the General Contractors Associate of Ottawa. Sean lives with wife and three children in Old Ottawa South.
Graham has been a senior executive in the financial services industry for over 25 years. As President of Walton Asset Management ( 2009-2012), his group created land-based real estate investments for individual and institutional investors worldwide for the Walton Group, one of North America’s leading real estate investment companies. He continues as an advisor to the Walton Group.
For the majority of his career (1986 – 2009), Graham was a Managing Director with RBC Capital Markets , Canada’s leading Investment Bank. In addition to being the firm’s senior Corporate Finance/Investment Banking representative in the Ottawa area between 2000 to 2009, he headed RBC’s Retail Structured Product Division, raising over $100 billion for domestic and international clients.
Graham is currently involved in a number of youth oriented organizations including the United Way (Champion for Youth), the Lift Foundation (Co-founder), and the Ottawa Senators Foundation (Vice Chair). Graham also sits on the Board of several private and public financial services companies.
Derek is a seasoned real estate developer with a strong background in real estate development, planning, project organization and commercial and residential construction management. Derek’s professional standings include a Chartered Accountant designation and his strengths in finance, corporate governance and due diligence round out his ability to bring innovative development concepts to life and the financial acumen to make them a reality. Prior to joining Huntington Properties as a Partner, Derek held senior executive positions with Canada’s leading “Green” Developer as well as with a National Self Storage Company. Derek skillfully manages strong project teams, engaging investors, lenders, urban planners, design professionals and contractors in order to deliver successful projects to completion. Among his community work, Derek is also Co-Chair of the CHEO Ski for Kids.
Robyn Osgood is a Managing Director at McMillan Vantage Policy Group. She has more than 30 years of experience providing strategic communications counsel, and developing and implementing communications plans. Working with senior leaders, she has developed strategies to support membership engagement and change-management initiatives, and managed large-scale, national campaigns.
She has a track record of creating strategies that have impact, that can be practically implemented and measured, and that reflect a client’s unique situation. She is often called upon to help clients communicate clearly and meaningfully with many different groups, from government decision-makers to customers, members, and volunteers. She has earned the trust of clients through her ability to manage the sensitivities and diverse interests associated with these complex multi-stakeholder engagements.
In addition to the Boys and Girls Club of Ottawa Board, Robyn is a member of the University of Ottawa Heart Institute Board and sits on that Board’s IT committee. She has undergraduate and graduate degrees in public relations from Mount Saint Vincent University, and holds a Diplôme d’Études Françaises from Université de Paul Valèry, Montpellier, France.
Michelle is the Director of Planning and Land Development for Tamarack Homes and Taggart Investments. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Dalhousie University and a Master’s in Urban and Regional Planning from Queen’s. She is a Registered Professional Planner and a LEED Accredited Professional. Michelle gained experience working for a global urban planning consulting firm in Toronto. She returned to Ottawa to join the Taggart Group in 2010, and is now leading land development and government relations. She chairs the company’s Sustainability Committee, mentors young mothers through Youville Centre, and regularly returns to her alma maters as a guest speaker.
Gary is an internationally-recognized lawyer serving the largest corporations in Canada and many of Canada’s wealthiest families. He is the CEO of Treehouse Family Advisory.
Over the past 30 years Gary has served national senior executive roles in the public and private sector and continues with his deep community leadership. He previously served as Deputy Director General at the Canadian Revenue Agency and Counsel with the Department of Justice prior to embarking on a 20 year career as an executive and senior partner for two of Canada's major professional services firms.
Gary currently advises several Canadian families and businesses including the Family Office at KPMG Enterprises. His passion is counseling families on succession planning and generational transitions.
Gary serves as Chair and board member for several private companies and family advisor to many of Canada’s most prominent families. Known for his philanthropy and commitment to building a strong community, Gary has been the recipient of numerous recognitions including The Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, the Order of Ottawa, Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser and has been awarded the Governor General’s Sovereign Medal for Volunteerism.
Gary holds a BA in economics, an MBA in management and marketing (Dalhousie), and an LLB (University of New Brunswick).