Board Board Board Board Board Board Board

Bryan Kwan

Bryan is a business immigration lawyer with McLennan Ross LLP with a particular interest in immigration and settlement policy.

Bryan was born and raised in Edmonton. His practice focuses on assisting employers and employees with coming to, and remaining, in Canada. Bryan has appeared before all levels of court in Alberta, the Federal Court, the Federal Court of Appeal as well as the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada. He is currently the Chair of the Canadian Bar Association North Alberta Immigration Section.

Darrell Wiens

Darrell Wiens, CPA, CA is an accountant with MNP LLP. He gives straightforward business and tax advice to his clients to help them reach their financial goals. He has served as Treasurer and Chair of the Audit and Finance Committee for EMCN since 2011.

Brian Ladd

Brian works as a policy analyst with Alberta Health Services’ Healthy Public Policy team. An Edmonton resident since 2003, he previously spent several years in the United States with environmental non-profit organizations. Brian’s background is primarily in public health sciences and natural resources management. He serves on the EMCN Board as a representative of Holyrood Mennonite Church.

Cecilia Ran

Cecilia joined the EMCN as a Community Member in December 2012. She is a senior manager at Grant Thornton LLP practicing in the Assurance and Business Advisory Service Group. Her focus is primarily working with publicly accountable organizations, including public companies, non-for-profits, and school boards for their audits. Cecilia also has experience with large private companies in manufacturing and distribution, and real estate. Cecilia has extensive experience with financial reporting, complex accounting and auditing issues.

Cecilia was submitted to the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants in 2006, and is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Alberta. Currently, Cecilia serves as a member of Early Career CAs working group for ICAA.

Herb Kuehne

Herb Kuehne has over 40 years of experience in the consulting engineering industry, as a Senior Project Manager and Infrastructure Specialist. His experience covers a diverse range of Civil Infrastructure and multi-discipline projects, including the planning and delivering of multi-billion-dollar programs.

His responsibilities included developing corporate strategies to expand the company’s Civil Infrastructure sector across Canada, technical development of human resources within the company, develop engineering capabilities through research and development and reviewing partnerships, strategic alliances and acquisitions.

Herb has held numerous executive and senior management positions at Associated Engineering and has served as a Board of Director on several of Associated Engineering’s companies. Herb’s Board experience also includes the Consulting Engineers of Alberta as President and Treasurer and the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies of Canada (ACEC) as Chairman and Treasurer.

Herb has served on the EMCN Board for 4 years including:

  • Governance Committee Chair and Member
  • Finance Committee Member
  • Facilities Committee Member

Wray Steedsman

Wray Steedsman is a senior executive who worked at EPCOR for nine years, most recently as Divisional VP, Technologies, and previously as SVP, Business Services & CIO. During his nearly 30 years in the information technology, telecommunications, and utility industries, Wray has also held executive positions with TELUS and start-up telecommunications companies. Wray is a board member with the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers and as the current chair. He is also an executive member of the Chamber of Commerce Economic Development Committee. In his personal time, Wray enjoys boating and fishing with his family.

Anna Priemaza

Anna Priemaza is a lawyer with McCuaig Desrochers LLP, practicing primarily in the areas of immigration and family law.

Anna was admitted to the bar in 2011. She graduated on the Dean’s List with a Bachelor of Laws (with Distinction) from the University of Alberta in 2010 and with a Bachelor of Arts (with Distinction) in English from Queen’s University in 2007. She is a former clerk of the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench.

Outside of practicing law, Anna values community involvement. Along with her role on the Board of EMCN, she is on the Board of Directors of Vanguard College, and she is a former Director of Kids On Track Association of Edmonton.

Kevin Guenther Trautwein

Kevin is a pastor at Lendrum Mennonite Church, where he is responsible for community development and strategic initiatives, including outreach and engagement with community organizations as well as coordinating and advising newcomer resettlement teams. He is also a director of the InterFaith Chaplains’ Association at the University of Alberta.

Kevin has a Master’s Degree in Theology from Conrad Grebel University College and a background in frontline support for street-involved individuals and at-risk youth. His father migrated to Canada as a young adult, giving Kevin first-hand experience of some of the challenges faced by newcomers. His passion is to build healthy communities and a sustainable lifestyle.

In his down time, Kevin enjoys camping with his family, canoeing or hiking with friends, table-top board games, and discovering new music.

Jennifer Braun

Jennifer is a PhD Candidate at the University of Alberta in the Department of Sociology. Her research focuses on women’s leadership in agriculture, specifically examining how women are shaping agricultural policy and practice in the Canadian Prairies, and how they achieve success despite the inequitable gender ratio often found in the sector’s leadership. Jennifer is a representative of the Lendrum Mennonite Brethern Church, and is very excited to serve the community in this capacity by offering her expertise in critical gender analysis and leadership. She also serves on the Canadian Association of Food Studies Board.

In her free time (of which there is very little), Jennifer enjoys playing with her 2-year-old son, discovering new music, and cooking food for friends and family.

Bin Lau

Strategic Advisor to the Mayor

As a long-time communications practitioner, Bin has worked in the private sector and public service in Canada and internationally, including the Saskatchewan Workers' Compensation Board, Government of Alberta, City of Edmonton and Edmonton Economic Development. He joined Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson's team after his election as the 35th mayor of Edmonton in 2013, advising on outreach and policy.

Bin serves on the boards of Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers and Ronald McDonald House Charities Alberta, and is a long-time volunteer at North America's largest and longest-running fringe theatre festival. Bin has a BA in economics and an MA in Southeast Asian studies.

Nasim Charkhandeh

Nasim holds an MBA from Dalhousie University in Financial Services and a BA from University of Alberta. She has over ten years of experience in the financial industry and wealth management. Nasim has extensive experience in the development and implementation of comprehensive financial strategies encompassing investments, estate planning, tax planning, retirement planning and business succession planning. She is a member of The Advisory Group at The Schmidt Investment Group at CIBC Wood Gundy, where she assists in implementing and monitoring client wealth management solutions in accordance with clients’ financial plans and investment policies.

Nasim is passionate about making a positive and meaningful impact through her work and community involvement. She serves as a member of the Board of Directors at EMCN.

Barry Andres

Executive Director for Addiction and Mental Health, Alberta Health Services

Barry is Executive Director of Addiction and Mental Health with Alberta Health Services. He is responsible for leading the coordination of addiction and mental health treatment and prevention services. He supports operational services through the development of policy and standards, care quality improvement, professional development and service reporting.  He has been involved in the development, delivery and evaluation of substance use treatment and prevention services throughout Alberta and has led initiatives advancing the integration of mental health and addiction services. He is president of the Canadian Executive Council on Addictions, a national body that advances substance use treatment.  He holds a Masters’ of Science in Health Promotion from the University of Alberta along with bachelors’ degrees in Education and Psychology.

Paola Matallana

Paola Matallana CPA, CA joined the EMCN board in September 2018. She is currently the accounting manager at Servus Credit Union responsible for all tax compliance of the organization. Her career in public practice; Government and  and being involved in the community with several non-for-profits has made her gained extensive experience with financial reporting, complex accounting and tax issues, budget and forecasting. Paola is currently working towards completing her Public Sector Certificate with CICA and to be appointed as a Commissioner for Oaths in Alberta.

Paola obtained her designation in 2015, and is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountanst of Alberta. She is currently a member of the Audit and Finance Committee for EMCN.

Hilary Rose, CPA,CA

Governance and financial leader

Hilary Rose is a Chartered Professional Accountant, member of the Institute of Corporate Directors, trained facilitator and certified internal auditor. She joined the EMCN Board in 2018. She also serves as Board member and Chair, Finance and Audit Committee, Legal Aid Alberta, Member, Audit Committee, Province of Alberta, Board Member and Chair of Finance Committee, Alberta Foundation for the Arts (2012-2015). She brings expertise in governance, financial and risk management and oversight.

Over her 20+ year career, Hilary has served as Vice President Finance and Administration and other senior executive positions with the Government of Alberta, the University of Alberta, the Auditor General of Alberta, Price Waterhouse and an Aboriginally owned federally regulated trust company. At the same time, she has served as Board member, treasurer and finance committee chair for not-for-profit boards and advisory committees, including the Edmonton Opera, Friends of Rutherford House, sporting organizations and the University of Alberta’s Women in Scholarship, Engineering, Science and Technology (WISEST). For 7+ years, she has been an instructor in the Financial Management program for not for profit and voluntary organizations.

Hilary graduated with a degree in Economics and Political Science from Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland. She is an Irish-Canadian and moved to Canada in 1981. A dedicated and lifelong volunteer, wife, mother and friend, Hilary balances her professional life with personal interests, including biking, skiing, opera, theatre, books and gardening.

Bin Lau

Strategic Advisor to the Mayor

Employee Since: 2017

Which living person do you most admire?

The Dalai Lama. Even though he has so much political influence, he believes the most important way to create change is through being kind and compassionate in every moment with each person he comes across.

Which talent would you most like to have?

I would like to be an exceptional ice skater, who could zip backwards and forwards across the ice.

What do you most value in your friends?

A fine balance between being accepting, while still asking questions that need to be asked. Bonus points if they also love Star Wars.

Who are your favorite writers?

Jane Austen, Lucy Maud Montgomery, J.R.R. Tolkein and J.K. Rowling

What book do you recommend most to people?

"Wherever you go, there you are" by Jon Kabat-Zinn

Derrick Schmuhl

Manager, Bridging and Training Programs

Employee Since: 2003 (consulting since 2001)

Which living person do you most admire?

Stephen Hawking

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I can change what I want to change and I don't waste energy worrying about things I can't.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

My healthy, happy kids, Heinreich and Chieza.

Where would you most like to live?

Depends on what time in my life you ask. Right now, I'm right where I want to be.

What is your motto?

Start from Zero and do the work.

Lule Begashaw

Manager of therapeutic services

Employee Since: 2011

Which living person do you most admire?

My father.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Nothing, but I would like to learn many things...

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Being a mother

What do you most value in your friends?

Genuine care for others

What is your motto?

Fulfilling God's purpose in my life.