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Board of Governors

Meet UFV Board Members

Appointed Board Members

President & Vice-Chancellor

Dr. Joanne MacLean


Dr. Andy Sidhu


John Pankratz, Chair

John Pankratz is a Partner with Grant Thornton LLP  Chartered Professional Accountants working out of the firm’s Abbotsford office. Mr. Pankratz is a UFV alumni and previously served as Chair of the UFV Board of Governors from 2016-2019. 

In 1988 Mr. Pankratz received his CGA (Certified General Accountants) designation, now the CPA (Chartered Professional Accountants), and throughout his career has been an active member in the legacy CGA organization serving on its Board and as Chair of the Public Practice Advisory Group, Chapter Advisory Group, and Practice Review Committee. Mr. Pankratz also served as Chair of the Public Practice Committee for CPA-BC and was an appointed member on the Auditor Certification Board for BC. Mr. Pankratz holds a Bachelor degree in Business Administration from Simon Fraser University.

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Adam Van Steinburg, Vice-Chair

Adam Van Steinburg is the International Representative for First District Canada of International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). In this role he manages the IBEW jurisdiction and inter-local matters in all sectors. He is past Business Manager of the IBEW Local 213 where he provided leadership to the union, managed financial assets, and negotiated and administered collective agreements. Mr. Van Steinburg is also past president of the Bargaining Council of BC Building Trades Unions. He has served as an advisory committee member for the Industry Training Authority and the BC Safety Authority. Prior to taking on various leadership roles, Mr. Van Steinburg worked as an electrician on commercial and industrial jobs throughout the lower mainland. He earned his red seal for the Province of BC, obtaining his Journeyperson (Electrical Construction and Maintenance) designation from the BC Institute of Technology.


Bailey Savage

Bailey Savage is an Associate with Kane Shannon Weiler LLP. She manages the conveyancing department at the Newton Office. Previously Mrs. Savage was an Associate in the Federal Prosecution Department at MTC Law and an Associate with Mani Sandu and Associates Law Corp.  Active in her community, she has been a Volunteer Clinician for the Law Students’ Legal Advice Program. Mrs. Savage is a member of the Chippewas of RAMA First Nations. She holds a Juris Doctor from the University of British Columbia and a Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Criminology from Kwantlen Polytechnic University.


Connie Swan

Connie is from the N’lakapamux Nation. Her mother is Thompson from Lytton, BC and her late father is Cree from Cold Lake, Alberta.

Connie has over 15 years of experience working for First Nations Education with a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership K-12 from Simon Fraser University, a Bachelor of Education from UBC, and a Bachelor of Arts from UCFV. Connie’s dream is to one day enter the political realm of Aboriginal Education, and she is currently employed with New Westminster Schools as the Aboriginal Education Coordinator. She is also the Aboriginal Education Representative for New Westminster Schools and an Aboriginal Educations Facilitator for the BC Teachers’ Federation (BCTF). Connie has a vested interest in Aboriginal curriculum development and implementation, and she is honoured and blessed to serve on the Board of Governors for the University of the Fraser Valley.


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Cristen Gleeson

Cristen Gleeson is a Managing Partner with Baker Newby LLP.  Previously Ms. Gleeson was a Project Coordinator for Pivot Legal Society and a Sole Practitioner and Barrister of Cristen Gleeson Law Office. Active in her community, she is Founder and Chair of the Canadian Bar Association Fraser Valley. Ms. Gleeson is also a Director of the Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation. Previously she was a Director of the Fraser Valley Child Development Centre and Pivot Legal Society.  Ms. Gleeson holds a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from Queen’s University.


Fran Vanderpol

Fran Vanderpol is the Chair of The Oikodome Foundation, a family foundation she and her husband Pieter founded more than 25 years ago and operate together with their children. Active in her community, she presently is a Director for Abbotsford Restorative Justice and Advocacy Association and is involved with the UFV Peace and Conflict Studies Program Community Advisory Committee and the vision of a Peace and Reconciliation Centre. Fran was a founding member of Character Abbotsford. Before selling the business to the next generation, Fran was owner and President of Vanderpol’s Eggs. She graduated from Hamilton Teachers College and has studied at McMaster University and Regent College.


Jinder Sarowa

Jinder Sarowa is currently Principal at R.E. Mountain Secondary School in Langley. Previously, Mr. Sarowa was Principal in the Abbotsford School District at Yale Secondary, Robert Bateman Secondary, Rick Hansen Secondary, and Abbotsford Middle, as well as Vice Principal at Abbotsford Senior; his focus is staff development and the student experience. He earned a Masters in Educational Leadership from Western Washington University in Bellingham. Active in his community, he is currently Tournament Director for the BC High School Basketball Association. He started the Canadian Cultural Pride Association, which was a group of community members who empowered youth to engage in positive initiatives. He was on the Board of Directors for the Abbotsford Community Foundation and Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation. He is past President of the Abbotsford Principals' Association. Over the past three years, he has been a part of the Abbotsford District learning team, engaged in educational advancement with Harvard and twelve other North American districts on emergent leadership & fostering equity environments. 


Maxine Bouthot

Maxine Bouthot is a Branch Manager with Envision Financial, a division of First West Credit Union, in Chilliwack.  With nearly 20 years of banking experience, her areas of expertise are leadership, mentorship, project management, and financial planning.

Maxine completed her BBA in 2007 through what was then University College of the Fraser Valley, returning in 2014 to serve on the UFV Alumni Association Board first as Treasurer and then later as Vice-Chair.

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Elected Faculty Board Members


Dr. Christine Slavik

Dr. Christine Slavik is Department Head and an Associate Professor in the Child, Youth, and Family Studies Department at the University of the Fraser Valley. Previously she was the Director of Child Life at British Columbia’s Children’s Hospital. She has been employed as a Child and Youth Care Counsellor and as a nurse in psychiatry/mental health. Christine teaches the Child Life and Community Health course as the foundation for the Child Life Specialization and is faculty liaison for the Child Life Internship.

Dr. Slavik holds a Certificate in Appreciative Inquiry Facilitation and is a Certified Trainer of the Appreciative Leadership Development Program. 

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Dr. Shelley Canning

Dr. Shelley Canning is an Associate Professor in Nursing at the University of the Fraser Valley and a research associate with UFV’s Centre for Education and Research on Ageing (CERA) and the Health and Social Innovation Hub (CHASI). She completed her PhD in nursing at UBC as well as a BSc and secondary school teaching certificate at the University of Victoria. Dr. Canning's nursing practice background includes palliative oncology and community health. She is an applied health researcher with a focus on ageing and dementia. Her research aims at better understanding and supporting the quality of life for older adults especially those living with dementia. She is also an advocate for the creation of "age-friendly" initiatives both within UFV and neighbouring communities. Shelley has been a nursing faculty member at UFV since 2006 where she has participated in a wide variety of faculty and institutional committees. 

Elected Staff Board Member


Pierce Stoeckly

Pierce Stoeckly has worked at UFV since 2001 as a Program Technician in all trades program areas, and he earned his Automotive Service Technician Red Seal Journeyman designation from UCFV. Prior to that, Pierce worked as a Service Technician for a GM Dealership in Abbotsford.

Pierce has also been an active member of the Kent/Harrison Search and Rescue for the past 25 years.

Elected Student Board Members


Jasleen Brar

Jasleen Kaur Brar is a second-year student in the Bachelor of Sciences in Nursing program and is serving her first-year on the Board of Governors.


Nimrat Aulakh

Nimrat Aulakh works as a Registered Nurse at the Seabird Indian Reserve and at the Abbotsford Regional Hospital. Prior to this, Nimrat worked as a youth support worker for four years, providing life skills for at risk youth and those with special needs.

Nimrat facilitates support groups, one-to-one peer support, and raises awareness on chronic illnesses. She is an Ambassador with the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada and a member of "Women Against MS" cabinet that organizes an annual fundraising gala.

Nimrat is a Board Member with the Lily Rose Children's Society which helps children overcome poverty in Uganda, Indian, and Kenya. As a Board Member with Langley Pos-abilities, Nimrat audits facilities to ensure they are accessible to people with disabilities and suggest changes to improve accessibility.

Nimrat facilitates monthly workshops at the Salvation Army to teach life skills to those experiencing homelessness. Nimrat also volunteers at the Crisis Centre to provide support to individuals experiencing a mental or physical crisis.

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