Recognizing contributions and transitions among Regional Representatives

thank you

Earlier this fall at the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Network Development meeting in Ottawa, Betty Anne Platt stepped down as Regional Representative, a role she has shared with Elaine Gareau for the past four years. The Great Lakes-St. Lawrence (GLSL) region, like each of the five KAIROS regions is large and challenging to connect across. GLSL extends from just east of Thunder Bay to include most of Ontario and all of Quebec. Under Betty Anne and Elaine’s leadership the ties with the subregions, particularly the eastern regions of Ottawa and Montreal have been significantly strengthened. Betty Anne brought with her a long history of involvement with KAIROS and one of our members, Development and Peace. Her understanding of the organization and the network lent both stability and new opportunities to the work of the ecumenical volunteer network.

Here are some thoughts from people who have worked closely with Betty Anne Platt:

Betty Anne Platt is a role model for effective leadership. She has that special gift of seeing what needs to be done and then follows up by creating a strategy to engage in a meaningful way with the rest of us. In whatever capacity (insightful and energetic participant, sub-regional rep or co-regional rep), Betty Anne has always managed to create and sustain a positive environment to the betterment of everyone.
For as long as I have known her, Betty Anne has brought great organizational skills and a wonderful sense of grace and commitment to her various roles in support of the Great Lakes – Saint Lawrence Region of KAIROS. Needless to say, I am delighted that Betty Anne will continue as treasurer.

as ever,

Tom Sagar

Betty Anne, Elaine and Cherilyn are rare and special people, they always give, and listen, no matter what the task.I have enjoyed working with Betty Anne at meetings since the beginning of KAIROS. Her phone number is on my speed dial. I have always found her thoughtful, considerate and willing. I remember the snowy trip with Betty Anne to the conference in North Bay. Great memories.

Jim Lindsay

Betty Anne was our Durham networker who motivated participants to attend Indigenous Learning opportunities at Christ Memorial Church Oshawa. Without her casting the advocacy net wider “critical mass” would not have been possible. These cultural competency sharing circles happened every 6 months.

Additionally, York & Durham collaborated and hosted a combined KAIROS mini Indigenous Cultural Meeting at Unionville. Again, Betty Anne rallied Durham participants.

I very much appreciate chatting with Betty Anne on welcoming new advocates to Indigenous culture, ceremony, custom sharing initiatives.

Dave Gordon

Working with Betty Anne to organise the 2019 regional gathering in Ottawa was stress-less, despite the physical distance between us. Betty Anne is an extremely organised thinker, meaning that she is always ready with details, large & small. She is also kind & thoughtful. Because she was so organised about the regional gathering planning & preplanning, there were no last-minute crises to deal with and we were able to get things done well from our end to the benefit of all.

Janyce Elser-Ethier, Convenor, Ottawa KAIROS Chapter

Betty Anne worked hard at keeping in touch with the Great Lakes – St. Lawrence sub-regional representatives and sought out new to KAIROS folks in areas such as Montreal. She has coordinated the twice-yearly meetings of sub-regional reps for the last four years, once in person and once by telephone conference.

She has been a dedicated KAIROS supporter for many years.

Cherilyn Spraakman

My gratitude to Betty Anne for leading the GLSL Kairos group with understanding and empathy for all. As well as the many volunteer hours that Betty Anne contributed to the KAIROS network, she also spent as many hours running a foundation called Canadian Aid for Education with her husband in the Dominican Republic. We are lucky to have her continue with the group as treasurer.

Elaine Gareau


We are happy to say that Elaine Gareau has agreed to stay on for another term and will be joined by Cherilyn Spraakman in the shared Regional Rep role. Cherilyn also has already sat on the GLSL Coordinating Committee for a number of years as both the York Region representative and as the secretary. We welcome Cherilyn to this new role that will put her in greater contact with the four other regions across the country. Betty Anne will now take on the role of treasurer. We thank Eric Pedersen for many years of able service in this area as he steps off the committee. New to the Coordinating Committee (CoCo) is Madalene Arias, as both representative from Toronto and recording secretary.

We also learned at the Ottawa meeting that four long-time members of the CoCo are officially stepping down: Tom Sagar (York), Reg McQuaid (Toronto), and Jim Lindsay (Waterloo-Huron subregion). A huge thank you goes out to these faithful social justice advocates for all they have given to KAIROS and the work of social justice in Canada over the decades!

Filed in: Regional News


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