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For Immediate Release

Feb. 24, 2012

Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation



BC Jobs and Investment Board complete


VICTORIA – A full slate of BC Jobs and Investment Board members are in place to build on British Columbia’s record setting exports in 2011 and the momentum of ‘Canada Starts Here: The BC Jobs Plan’.


The BC Jobs and Investment Board includes experts from industry, policy and trade who will provide advice and direction to government on policies and programs to help attract sustainable investment and support job creation. It will focus on the eight key sectors in the BC Jobs Plan – forestry, mining, natural gas, agri-foods, technology, tourism, transportation and international education.


The board's major strategic objectives are to foster economic development by:

·         Identifying issues and processes that are potentially limiting development, and proposing solutions.

·         Identifying emerging opportunities for economic development and facilitating new investment.

·         Providing expert advice on global issues and trends affecting the B.C. investment climate.


Pat Bell, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation –

“Each one of these people has unique and valuable experience in business and government. They understand the challenges that the world economy is going through, but most importantly, the tremendous opportunities that exist for the B.C. economy as we implement our Jobs Plan.”


Quick Facts:
B.C.’s total exports grew 14.2 per cent to $32.8 billion in 2011.

·         In 2011, for the first time ever, B.C.’s trade with the Pacific Rim outstripped that of the U.S.

·         The top five markets for British Columbia's exports of goods in 2011 were:

o   United States: $14 billion – 5.4 per cent increase

o   China/Hong Kong: $5.1 billion – 24 per cent increase

o   Japan: $4.7 billion – 11.7 per cent increase

o   South Korea: $2.7 billion – 45 per cent increase

o   European Union: $2.3 billion – 14.6 per cent increase


Learn more at


For Immediate Release

Feb. 24, 2012

Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation




BC Jobs and Investment Board members


Current members:


Chair: Ray Castelli is CEO of Weatherhaven, one of the world’s leading suppliers of redeployable camps and shelter systems, specializing in remote areas and difficult climatic conditions. He is also a member of the boards of directors of Avcorp Aviation, Global Cobalt, the Prince Rupert Port Authority and the Working Opportunity Fund. Born and raised in Prince Rupert, Castelli earned his bachelor of business administration from Simon Fraser University, and completed the International Executive Program at l’Institut Européen d'Administration des Affaires in France, more commonly known as INSEAD.


Ellis Ross is the recently elected Chief Councillor of the Haisla Nation, although he has been a fulltime Councillor since 2003. He has had many portfolios over his terms, but has always maintained his connection to those files that have an Aboriginal rights and title component or economic development. He has worked for the private sector, the public sector and operated his own business in partnership with his brothers through the 1990s. Over the past 12 years, he has coached and assisted Haisla basketball teams. Mr. Ross also coached the senior girls basketball team to a zone championship. He is also chair of the Aboriginal Business and Investment Council.


New members:


Kaity Arsoniadis-Stein is the president and secretary-general of the International Ship-owners Alliance of Canada Inc. (ISAC). She also serves as a member of the Canadian Maritime Law Association, director of the International Maritime Centre, vice-president and director of the Vancouver Maritime Arbitrators Association and trustee of Insurance Dispute Resolution Services of British Columbia. Ms. Arsoniadis-Stein drives forward ISAC’s role to collaborate with government, international organizations, labour unions, business and environmental groups to advance the interests of ship owners and operators with a presence in Canada to ensure a safe, environmentally responsible and sustainable shipping industry. She holds her bachelor of arts from the University of British Columbia, her bachelor of laws in English law from the University College of Wales and a master of laws (honours) in maritime law from King’s College, University of London.


Frenny Bawa has held various senior level positions in the IT and Telecom Industries for over 20 years and has extensive experience in the international arena. Most recently, she was vice-president of global business development at Research in Motion (RIM) and managing director for RIM's Indian operations. Active in the community, she serves on the Dean's Advisory Board at the Beedie School of Business and Simon Fraser University’s (SFU) India Advisory Council.  Ms. Bawa holds her bachelor of business administration from SFU and a master of business administration from McGill University.


Kathy D. Butler is a managing director and co-head of CIBC World Markets’ Vancouver Investment Banking Group. Ms. Butler joined CIBC in 1996 and has been involved in a number of mergers and acquisitions advisory mandates, as well as debt and equity financings. She is on the board of directors of Atira Women’s Resource Society and is a partner of BC Social Venture Partners. Ms. Butler holds a master in business administration (honours) from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto and a bachelor of commerce in finance (honours) from the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia.


Joseph P. Caron is a special advisor with Heenan Blaikie in their Asia-Pacific group. He began his international relations career in 1972 as a member of the Trade Commissioner Service. His knowledge of the Japanese language led to assignments in Japan for over 17 years, both at the Canadian Embassy including as Minister Plenipotentiary and Head of Chancery as well as in the business sector. During the 1980s, Mr. Caron undertook private sector assignments with responsibilities in Japan, China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. He also subsequently held several positions related to Asian and international economic affairs for the Canadian government, including serving the Foreign and Defence Policy Secretariat of the Privy Council Office. He was also deeply involved in G8 and APEC Summitry, actively participating in a dozen summit meetings of government leaders.


From 2001 to 2005, he served as Canadian Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China with concurrent accreditation in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) and Mongolia. In 2005, he was named Canadian Ambassador to Japan and in 2008, he served as High Commissioner to the Republic of India, with concurrent accreditation as non-resident Ambassador to the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal and to the Kingdom of Bhutan. That same year, Mr. Caron was awarded an honorary doctorate from Meiji Gakuin University in Tokyo for his efforts in developing the Canada-Japan relationship. He has also been named a Distinguished Fellow of the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada as well as an honorary research associate at the Institute of Asian Research of the University of British Columbia. Mr. Caron holds his bachelor specialise sciences politiques from the Université d’Ottawa. He currently serves on the boards of Manulife Financial Corporation and Vancouver International Airport.


Stockwell Day represented Red Deer North in the Alberta legislature from 1986 to 2000, where he served in the Progressive Conservative government in a variety of senior roles including chief whip, government house leader, minister of labour and minister of social services. From 1997 to 2000, he was provincial treasurer (minister of finance) and acting Premier. In 2000, Mr. Day won the leadership of the Canadian Alliance and became leader of Canada’s Official Opposition.  In 2002, Mr. Day was appointed foreign affairs critic, vice-chair of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade, as well as chair of the Subcommittee on Human Rights. In 2003, the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada merged to become the Conservative Party of Canada. In 2006, Mr. Day was appointed minister of public safety and member of the Cabinet Committee on Priorities and Planning.


Upon his re-election in 2008, Mr. Day was appointed minister of international trade and minister for the Asia-Pacific gateway and regional minister for British Columbia advancing the economic and trade interests of B.C. He was also appointed chair of the Cabinet Committee on Afghanistan. In 2010, Mr. Day was appointed president of the Treasury Board. He did not seek re-election in the 2011 general election. He is a member of the Royal Canadian Legion and the Rotary Club, to name a few. Mr. Day attended the University of Victoria.


Richard Dunn is vice-president, regulatory and government relations for the Canadian Division of the Encana Corporation. He is responsible for federal and provincial government relations and policy development. He currently serves on the board of directors of Geoscience BC and the Calgary Quest Society, a school for children with special challenges. Mr. Dunn holds his bachelor of applied science in mechanical engineering from the University of British Columbia and holds his master of applied science in chemical and petroleum engineering from the University of Calgary.


Brian Fehr leads the BID Group’s strategic expansion and corporate vision as chief executive officer with over 30 years of experience in industrial fabrication and construction. Through his direct involvement in project management and customer relations, he has helped to establish the BID Group as a premier design, manufacturing, construction and project management organization. He currently serves on the board of directors of the BC Safety Authority and is a past director of the BC Association for Crane Safety and Baldy Hughes Addiction Treatment Centre.


Hank Ketcham is the president, chief executive officer, and chair of West Fraser Timber. Mr. Ketcham joined the company in 1973 and was appointed president and CEO in 1985.  In 1996 he was appointed chairman, president, and CEO. Mr. Ketcham is the former chair of the Council of Forest Industries, the Forest Products Association of Canada, a founding member of the Forest Alliance of British Columbia, a former director of St. Paul's Hospital Foundation, and is currently a director of Toronto-Dominion Bank. In 1996, Mr. Ketcham was awarded the Order of British Columbia. He holds his bachelor of arts from Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.


Gary Kroeker serves as a director with the Community Savings Credit Union following the merger of Community Savings and Operating Engineers Credit Union. Previously, he was a member of the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 115 since 1971 and was employed by Local 115 in 1974.  During this time, he held the office of guard, treasurer, and recording corresponding secretary. In February 1992, he became business manager of the 10,000 plus member organization. He was elected as international vice president in 1995 and held the position of 4th general vice president of the International Union. He has also served as president of the following labour organizations: the BC and Yukon Territory Building Trades Council, the Allied Hydro Council, the BC Highways and Relations Construction Council, and a member of the Executive Board of the BC Federation of Labour. Active in the community, he is a director with Habitat For Humanity Greater Vancouver. Mr. Kroeker brings over 30 years of credit union experience as a respected director of the Operating Engineers Credit Union Board from 1975 through to the merger in April 2009.



V. Paul Lee is the managing partner of Vanedge Capital.  As the former president of Electronic Arts, Inc. (EA), the global leader in interactive software, he was responsible for its Worldwide Studios group.  Mr. Lee joined EA in 1991 when EA acquired Distinctive Software, Inc., a leading independent videogame developer where he was an executive and part owner. In 1996, Mr. Lee was awarded the Outstanding Young Alumnus Award from the University of British Columbia. Mr. Lee was awarded the British Columbia Technology Industries Association Person of the Year Award in 2002.


In addition, he has received numerous awards for his community service including the Commemorative Medal for the Golden Jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for significant contribution in the form of public service in 2003. In 2005, he was recognized as an honorary fellow of the University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business. Mr. Lee is the former chair of the British Columbia Technology Industries Association and currently serves as a member of the Premier’s Technology Council, a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council for the Sauder School of Business at UBC, and a director for the Vancouver Board of Trade.  He is chair of DigiBC and is one of Canada’s representatives to Asia Pacific Economic Council’s Business Advisory Council.


Wendy Lisogar-Cocchia is a hotelier by trade and has served as the executive vice-president of the Century Plaza Hotel and Spa for the past 25 years. In addition, she is the president of Absolute Spa Group, Canada’s largest and most luxurious spa chain. Ms. Lisogar-Cocchia was recently named one of B.C.’s most Influential Women in Business by the Vancouver Sun, for her endless philanthropy and community service. Sitting on multiple boards, Ms. Lisogar-Cocchia was the first woman elected to the Vancouver Police Board Foundation. She currently sits as the senior vice-chair on the Vancouver Board of Trade. As the incoming chair for the 2011-2012 year, Ms. Lisogar-Cocchia will be the youngest female chair in the 124 years of the Vancouver Board of Trade history.


She has received numerous awards and honours including Canadian Food Services/Hospitality Executives Association Entrepreneur of the Year, Business in Vancouver’s Most Influential Women in Business, YWCA’s Woman of Distinction – Entrepreneur and Innovator, Variety Club’s International Corporate Fundraiser of the Year and the Variety Club Angel Award. Ms. Lisogar-Cocchia recently received the Lifetime Achievement Industry Award from the Leading Spas of Canada. She founded the Century Plaza Hotel and Spa Women’s Media Golf Classic, which has raised over $2.6 million for various children’s charities. Ms. Lisogar-Cocchia holds her bachelor of arts in psychology and political science from the University of British Columbia and her doctorate of laws (honoris causa) from the Justice Institute of British Columbia.  She is also a fellow of Royal Roads University.



Gerry Martin and his partner have owned Northern Drugs Ltd., a chain of independent drug stores operating in Northwestern B.C., for 36 years. Mr. Martin is still active in business with Kra-Mar Investments as well as being president of Shames Mountain Ski Corporation, past president of the Kitimat/Terrace Industrial Development Society, and president of the Kitamaat Port Development Society. Throughout his business career, Mr. Martin has been active in a number of community endeavours both at the local and provincial level. At the present time, he is a member of the Premier's Technology Council, a member of the Transmission Planning Advisory Committee of the BC Transmission Corporation, and a director of the University of Northern BC Foundation. Mr. Martin is a graduate of the University of British Columbia with a bachelor of science in pharmacy and professionally has served on the board of the BC Pharmacy Association and is a past president of the Chain Drug Association of BC.


R. Harry McWatters is the president and chief executive officer of Vintage Consulting Group Inc.  In addition, he is the founder and former president of Suma Ridge Estate Winery and See Ya Later Ranch Estate Winery, and former president of Black Sage Vineyards. Mr. McWatters is the founding chairman of the BC Wine Institute, a past director of the BC Progress Board, and founding chairman and director of the BC Hospitality Foundation. In addition, he has served as a director and former chair of FortisBC Inc. since 2005 and has served as a director on Fortis Inc. since 2007.  In 2001, Mr. McWatters received an honorary doctor of laws from Okanagan University College for his outstanding service and the pivotal role he played in the development of both British Columbia and Canada’s wine industry.


Dr. Ralph Nilson is the president and vice-chancellor of Vancouver Island University.  Previously, he was vice president, academic, and professor in the School of Recreation Management and Kinesiology at Acadia University.  Prior to that, he was the director with the Indigenous Peoples Health Research Centre at the First Nations University of Canada and a professor in the faculty of kinesiology and health studies with the University of Regina. Dr. Nilson is the founding chair with the Board of the Saskatchewan Population Health and Evaluation Research Unit and former vice-chair with Saskatchewan Health Research.


In addition, he is the founding chair of the Saskatchewan Provincial Health Council; a member with the Saskatchewan Prescription Drug Review Committee; a member of the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Advisory Committee on Population Health; the president of the Canadian Council of University Physical Education and Kinesiology Administrators; a member of Health Canada Committee to assess reinstitution of ParticpACTION; and a member of the Advisory Board of the Small Town Institute, to name a few. He has an honourary appointment as Vice Consul with the Royal Norwegian Consulate for the Province of Saskatchewan. Dr. Nilson holds his bachelor of arts from Simon Fraser University, his master of science from Southern Connecticut University, and his doctorate from the University of Oregon.



Marcia M. Smith is the senior vice president, sustainability and external affairs with Teck Resources Ltd. She joined Teck in 2010 as vice president of corporate affairs. Previously, Ms. Smith was managing partner for National Public Relations in British Columbia and its predecessor company, Labrador Communications, from 1993 to 2010. Ms. Smith has also worked for the governments of Ontario and British Columbia as an advisor to cabinet ministers in a variety of portfolios. She is a member of a committee of special advisors to the B.C. government on British Columbia’s Labour Code. Active in the community, she served as a member of Excellence Canada, a council member of Pacific Council World Wildlife Fund Canada, and a former member of Arts Umbrella. Ms. Smith holds a bachelor of arts (honours) in English and political science from Laurentian University.



Media contact:

Sheldon Johnson

Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation

250 213-5811


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