• Shae Viswanathan

    Associate Director of Settlement Services

    Shae Viswanathan

    Associate Director of Settlement Services

    Originally from British Columbia, Canada, Shae began her career in Southeast Asia where she lived and worked for more than 10 years, occupying progressively senior roles in a number of multi-national organizations and traveling the region extensively. She returned to her roots in Canada the Fall of 2006 and found her ultimate calling in the non-profit sector, focusing on community development, immigrant settlement and language services. Since then, Shae has managed a wide variety of portfolios and programs while working with diverse teams of staff and volunteers from a large spectrum of ethno-cultural backgrounds and professions. She continues to sit on a variety of committees within the Metro-Vancouver region dealing with immigrant settlement issues and remains passionate about building a community based on equity, diversity and inclusion. In her free time, Shae enjoys cooking Southeast Asian cuisine and hiking BC’s beautiful rain forests.

  • Bonnie So

    Associate Director, ISS Language & Career College

    Bonnie So

    Associate Director, ISS Language & Career College

    Bonnie So is the first to admit that her pride in the ISS Language and Career College (LCC) – ISSofBC’s very successful social enterprise – goes deeper than merely professional.

    “It has been so fulfilling to witness LCC grow from one class of 12 students to our current operation with over 2,000 students attending ESL, vocational and co-op programs each year,” says Bonnie, who was involved in the creation of the program in 1995.

    “Having come to Canada from Hong Kong as an international student myself, I value and enjoy our multicultural clients and our diverse staff and volunteers,” says Bonnie, who has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Toronto’s York University and a Multicultural Settlement Certificate.

    Under Bonnie’s management, LCC became a recognized college, earned accreditations from Languages Canada and the BC government (Private Training Institutions Branch), and was listed on the federal government’s prestigious Designated List of Institutions. LCC revenues generated over the years have contributed significantly to supporting unfunded ISSofBC programs.

  • Ewa Karczewska

    Associate Director - Language College - LINC

    Ewa Karczewska

    Associate Director - Language College - LINC

    It’s hard to miss Ewa Karczewska in a crowd. Her exuberant personality and infectious energy bring a positive vibe to any gathering. As General Manager/Community Relations of the new ISSofBC Welcome Centre – Surrey, Ewa may be counted upon to deliver with vigor, the client-focused, multi-service model that its forerunner in Vancouver was built on.

    Ewa, who joined ISSofBC in 1994, has a well-known record for connecting with people, identifying problems, finding solutions and getting things done. As one of her colleagues said, “Ewa leads with flair! She is an exceptional leader who is proficient, fun, and never afraid to roll up her sleeves and do what needs to be done.”

    Ewa joined ISSofBC in 1994 as Childcare Supervisor. This was followed by promotions to ELSA Assistant Manager position then to ELSA/LINC Manager position in 2007. Ewa was instrumental in setting up of the ISSofBC LINC satellite locations in Tri-Cities, Richmond, New Westminster and Maple Ridge. She has also served in several BC-wide and regional committees and boards, including the City of Coquitlam Multicultural Advisory Committee.

    In her spare time, Ewa enjoys spending time with her family and friends, hiking, traveling and relaxing in the sun.

  • Gabby Korcheva

    Associate Director, Career Services

    Gabby Korcheva

    Associate Director, Career Services

     

    Gabby Korcheva joined ISSofBC in 2019 and, as an immigrant herself and a solutions-focused “people person,” she gets her energy from building meaningful employment and business start-up opportunities for immigrants and refugees coming through ISSofBC’s doors.

    She has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Philosophy and a Master of Education in Adult Education from the University of British Columbia. Gabby was also a 2016 RADIUS Fellow at the Simon Fraser University Beedie School of Business and completed the Social Impact Business-Start Up Incubator program at Spring Activator in 2015. Prior to joining ISSofBC, she was co-founder and manager at Binners’ Project, a local social enterprise of waste-pickers dedicated to creating new economic opportunities and reducing the stigma they face as informal recyclable collectors.

    Gabby believes strongly in the principles of lifelong learning that places learners at the centre. She knows that when the connection is right, we derive confidence, a strong sense of self-efficacy, and valuable learning through work. It is through this belief that she is confident we can move towards greater social and economic equity for all.

  • Jennifer York

    Associate Director, Settlement

    Jennifer York

    Associate Director, Settlement

    Jennifer York’s career path at ISSofBC gives her a rare vantage point not available to anyone else in the organization at her level.

    From serving as volunteer 13 years ago to occupying positions as receptionist, program assistant, employment counsellor, senior counsellor to being manager of federally and provincially-funded employment programs, Jennifer brings to her current position as Settlement Division Manager, a unique understanding of the work requirements and challenges at each level of the organization’s operations.

    Jennifer has a Bachelor of Science degree from University of Alberta, an Executive Master of Business Administration and a Certificate for Responsible Leadership from Queen’s University. She currently serves as secretary for Kindness Foundation which promotes kindness through a school toolkit used by Vancouver School Board and other school districts.

    Outside of work, Jennifer enjoys spending her free time hiking in the BC trails, baking bread, learning new activities and spending time with her little Pekinese, Sunshine.