• Carla Morales, MBA

    Director, Language & Career Services

    Carla Morales, MBA

    Director, Language & Career Services

    Carla Morales is an accomplished professional with proven success in development, governance and strategic planning for non-profit groups and community based organizations in Canada and overseas in East Africa.

    For over 15 years, Carla has diverse experience in the non-profit sector, a well-developed analysis of key development issues and high competence in intercultural communication. She has held a strong orientation towards community engagement and partnership development.

    Carla has a B.A. in Psychology from the University of British Columbia and holds a Masters of Business Administration from the City University of Seattle. She has completed courses through the Executive Education arm of the UBC Sauder School of Business. She currently serves as advisor to two community-based organizations in rural Kenya to support their capacity-building efforts. Much of her time is spent staying abreast of the issues that influence the social impact of the organizations she is involved with.

    Carla enjoys reading, practicing yoga, travelling and spending time with her young daughter.

    “The key to supporting newcomers successfully is to constantly be assessing their experience – to really listen. You have to be grounded in that understanding before you can innovate and serve with excellence.”

  • Chris Friesen

    Chief Operating Officer

    Chris Friesen

    Chief Operating Officer

    Chris Friesen who served as ISSofBC’s Settlement Services Director for almost 30 years, has long been recognized as a leader in the refugee and immigrant sector throughout Canada and has been at the forefront of major refugee resettlement initiatives in BC and Canada. Chris has been an integral member of national bodies including holding senior leadership roles with the Canadian Immigrant Settlement Sector Alliance and National Settlement and Integration Council. He has also represented Canada on the international stage and is a sought-after speaker on immigration-related policies and programs. Chris played a key role in the development of ISSofBC Welcome Centre, a social purpose built, one of a kind facility in Vancouver.

    As an undergraduate student at UBC in the mid 1980’s, Chris led a successful referendum on campus to increase student fees to establish a permanent student refugee scholarship program. What started as a one-off initiative has rippled through over 60 post-secondary institutions across Canada through the World University Service of Canada (WUSC) Student Refugee Sponsorship Program and is now an international resettlement promising practice for alternative resettlement pathways. Prior to his roles within ISSofBC, Chris coordinated a British-Kenyan Educational Trust for Refugees in Nairobi for over two-and-a-half years.

    “Underlying my work for over three decades is a profound respect and awe for the strength and resilience of immigrants and refugees who chose or were forced to start over in this country. They inspire and drive our work.”

  • Jonathan Oldman

    Chief Executive Officer

    Jonathan Oldman

    Chief Executive Officer

    Jonathan has over 20-years of senior leadership experience in BC’s not-for-profit sector, working with a range of organizations and systems serving populations including the homeless, individuals with mental health and addiction challenges, seniors, and those at end-of-life. Jonathan was formerly Executive Director of The Bloom Group, one of the largest community organizations in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. In the two years prior to joining ISSofBC, he worked in a variety of senior leadership roles in the cancer care sector, including with the Canadian Cancer Society. Jonathan has a Master of Arts degree in Leadership and Training from Royal Roads University, and also serves on the Board of Directors of Catalyst Community Developments Society, a BC-based not-for-profit real estate developer. Born in the UK, Jonathan began his career in the British National Health Service, working in a variety of hospital and community health care settings.

    “I have spent my entire career working to strengthen communities and support systems. I’m humbled and proud to continue this journey with ISSofBC and look forward to building on the incredible success Patricia and the ISSofBC team have achieved to date. As we continue to address the impact of COVID-19 and other critical challenges facing our society and country, furthering our organization’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, our broad work to promote social justice, and our support of reconciliation with Indigenous peoples will be key priorities for me.”

  • Kathy Sherrell, PhD

    Director, Settlement

    Kathy Sherrell, PhD

    Director, Settlement

    Kathy Sherrell has worked at ISSofBC in settlement services for over 12 years. During this time she has taken a lead role in program development and evaluation, contract negotiations and oversight, and quality assurance and standardization. Involvement in special projects such as the BC Refugee Hub and allows Kathy to share her passion for refugee resettlement with others, promoting policy change and greater understanding of refugee issues.

    Kathy holds a PhD in Geography from the University of British Columbia and a Master of Arts Degree from Simon Fraser University with an emphasis on refugee resettlement in Canada. Kathy continues to be actively engaged in research. At present Kathy is a co-investigator on two pan-Canadian, multi-year refugee research projects, as well as a lead on numerous internal research projects. She is an Affiliated Scholar with York University’s Centre for Refugee Studies and serves on UBC Centre for Migration Studies Executive Committee.

    Kathy is passionate about evaluation and outcomes measurement, serving on IRCC’s National Settlement Outcomes Group, co-chairing the BC Settlement Outcomes Working Group, and as a member of the BCSIS Program Evaluation Working Group. She is the internal Project Manager for implementation of the NewTrack client information system.

    “I am inspired by the strength and resilience of refugee newcomers to Canada and committed to reducing structural barriers to their integration through my work and research.”

  • Lawrence Tam, CPA

    Director, Finance & IT

    Lawrence Tam, CPA

    Director, Finance & IT

    Lawrence Tam arrived here with his family as a youngster from Hong Kong during Canada’s centennial year in 1967 and settled in Vancouver. A Bachelor of Commerce graduate from UBC and a Chartered Public Accountant (CPA – CGA) for over 30 years, he has been with ISSofBC for over 10 years as the Director of Finance and IT. Prior to this, Lawrence held executive finance and administration positions in several major credit unions, in addition to a short tenure with the provincial Finance Ministry.

    Lawrence is an active member of the Vancouver Chinatown Lions Club. During his year as President, the Club received the Lions Club International Club Excellence Award and was the Top LCIF Contributor Club in Canada. He has received several Lions International President Letter of Commendation and Certificate of Appreciation.

    Lawrence has been married for more than 40 years to Cathy and has two sons and four granddaughters. In his spare time, he enjoys live concerts, dancing, running and going to the YMCA. Last year, Lawrence completed his 20th consecutive Sun Run.

    “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your Life”

  • Parm Sandhu

    Acting Chief Information Officer

    Parm Sandhu

    Acting Chief Information Officer
  • Rebecca Irani

    Director of Communications

    Rebecca Irani

    Director of Communications

    Rebecca is a global communications strategist with over 18 years of experience in the international development/NGO, non-profit, private, and public sectors. She displays a passion for issues including education, diversity, inclusion, social justice, and sustainability.

    She has worked at some of the world’s leading communications and marketing consultancies. She speaks English, French, and Spanish and has lived and worked across Europe, East Africa, the Americas, the Middle East, and Australasia. She immigrated to Canada in 2008.

    She holds an MSc in Sustainable Development from the University of London, a BA in Modern Languages, and an advanced Certificate in Marketing (Chartered Institute of Marketing). Fervent about education, she’s also a qualified English teacher (CELTA).

    Rebecca enjoys the great outdoors, yoga, traveling, and spending time with her young son.

    “Canada is the land of newcomers and ISSofBC plays a leading role in their successful integration. I am proud to become part of the team. As a result of my own immigration journeys and diverse cultural background, I empathize with all newcomers and refugees and admire their strength and hope.”