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MEET THE TEAM

The SILA Skills Group Board of Directors comprises a team of passionate, committed, skilled volunteers who drive expansion, ensuring sustainability while implementing its mission. The board plays a pivotal role in governance, strategic planning, and financial oversight.
Rosanna Ruppert
Board Member
President

Rosanna Ruppert is a Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) skills practitioner, DBT skills coach for youth and adults and workshop developer for teachers, education assistants, guidance counsellors and child and youth counsellors.  She implemented a pilot project bringing DBT based skills to 5 GTA schools, training and coaching teachers, educating parents and tailoring curriculum to accommodate specific needs of schools.  Her teaching style and responsiveness make her highly regarded and sought after by schools.  Rosanna ran the first-ever DBT-focused conference for educators in the Toronto area attended by 50 teachers and school board staff.  Rosanna is committed to teaching these essential skills through the SILA Skills Workshops.

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Kelly Maxwell
Board Member
Vice President

Kelly Maxwell (B.Ed ‘89, M.Ed ‘16) is an elementary school teacher in Alberta. After 30+ years of teaching, she recently retired and then completed training in the teaching of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Skills.  

Kelly's passion for sharing DBT-informed skills with educators stems from her transformative experiences at home and work. These skills improved her mental health and enhanced her connection with her family, students, colleagues, parents, etc. She saw first-hand that these skills helped de-escalate tense situations and, in doing so, transformed her classroom and home environment. Inspired by this journey, she co-founded SILA Skills. She firmly believes that learning these skills can significantly impact everyone, equipping them with the tools to navigate their world with resilience and empathy.

Johanne Papillon
Board Member
Treasurer

Johanne is a financial and risk management professional with 25 years of experience in the Canadian financial services industry. Her career spans multiple functional corporate areas, including financial reporting, strategic planning, risk management and controls, and asset-liability management. Johanne is a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries and of the Society of Actuaries and holds a B.Sc. in Actuarial Mathematics from Concordia University (1990).

Johanne passionately believes that the skills taught in the SILA Skills Workshops are critically needed across our entire society, from educators to health professionals, service providers and everyone else in between.  The skills were transformational for her and her family as they lived through some challenging years. The skills continue to be instrumental in all aspects of her life’s journey.

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Kandis Hiscock
Board Member
Secretary

Kandis is a member of the RCMP in Alberta and currently works as a Diversity Engagement Officer. She considers herself a life-long learner with a passion for advocacy amongst marginalized/disadvantaged groups. Her previous roles in the RCMP have included Indigenous Policing, Mental Health, and Domestic Violence, and she has been a lifetime volunteer for her grandmother’s not-for-profit, “Esquao- Institute for the Advancement of Aboriginal Women”. Both her professional roles and lived experiences fuel the drive to help champion community wellness in any way possible, and that’s how she came to find SILA Skills. She believes the solution to all problems is simply an openness to education and acceptance of all.

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Josh Jacobs
Board Member
 

Josh has been in vocational church ministry since 2010. He is ordained with the Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada and has been on staff as a pastor at churches in Saskatoon SK, Devon AB, and is currently serving in Alberta Beach, AB. The bulk of his experience is working with youth and young adults; creating a safe environment for them to explore questions related to life and faith. He is committed to creating spaces where people from all walks know that they're story matters and providing a place to learn and grow in community.

He has experienced first hand the value of the skills taught by SILA for navigating conflict and helping to ensure that people feel heard and valued.

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Jessica Laham
Board Member
 

Jessica is an in-house counsel for a global biopharmaceutical company. Prior to moving in-house, she spent several years as a litigator at a Bay Street law firm. Jessica completed her B.Com at Queen's University and JD at UBC and had a career in advertising before becoming a lawyer. She is a passionate volunteer and spent many years working with SILA Skills President Rosanna Ruppert as a Girl Guide leader. Jessica believes in the importance and accessibility of good mental health care for all and has seen firsthand how beneficial DBT-based skills can be. She looks forward to helping SILA Skills bring those skills to people everywhere.

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