Urban Academy Board of Directors

A visionary board is made up of a wide variety of people from all walks of life with a rich and diverse skill set. With backgrounds ranging from finance and business to the arts and service, the Urban Academy Board is no exception. Our passionate Board of Directors are committed to upholding our commitment to innovation and excellence. Through strategic guidance and expertise, our board ensures that Urban Academy has a strong, stable leadership group behind it.

board of directors

Abigail Shu
Chair

Abigail Shu is a physician dedicated to the development and growth of Urban Academy. She has a strong passion for childhood education and has been committed to various school initiatives including the Gala Committee and Parent Auxiliary.

Children at UA: 2

Jaki Laga
Vice Chair

Jaki has 20 years experience in sales and marketing. She is currently responsible for sales and marketing at LAGA Sports, a Canadian manufacturer of custom team wear located in Burnaby, BC.

Jaki has been involved in volunteerism at Urban Academy in various capacities since 2012.

Children at UA: 2

Joanne Ward
Secretary

Joanne Ward is a successful business consultant with over 20 years experience in management and executive roles. She has served as a Director, CFO and Corporate Secretary of both public and private corporations.

Joanne is passionate about volunteering in the Urban Academy community, having served on PAX, and as Volunteer Coordinator.

Children at UA: 1

Rory Langran
Treasurer

Rory holds professional CTP (Certified Treasury Professional – AFP) and DMS (Derivatives Market Specialist – Canadian Securities Institute) designations, has been involved with multiple Boards, and has experience in both Canadian and International banking.

Children at UA: 2

Ben Marsolais
Member at Large

Ben Marsolais is a graduate of the BCIT Building Technology Program, the University of Northern British Columbia Construction Management program, and he has a LEED Green Associate designation. Ben brings with him an extensive background in construction, development, planning, and project management.

Children at UA: 2

Deborah McKenzie
Member at Large

Deborah is an entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience consulting on significant residential and commercial development projects, and has been part of the Urban Academy family for over a decade. She has a passion for bringing talent and expertise together to achieve strategic growth for healthy, long-term community development.

Children at UA: 2

Elizabeth Fletcher
Member at Large

Elizabeth has over 30 years experience in financial services delivery, and senior management. She was the Chief Financial Officer of a TSX listed, publicly regulated utility company, and in her current role, she manages a project budget in excess of $800 million. Elizabeth has also has actively supported the non-profit sector, acting as a director for several organizations.

Children at UA: 1

Kimberly Grant
Member at Large

Kimberly is a business lawyer with a focus on the solicitors’ side of corporate, commercial and real estate matters. She strongly believes that the giving of one’s time and effort is important and has been involved in various volunteer opportunities at UA since joining in 2016, including sitting as a member of the Finance Committee. 

Children at UA: 1

Karim Merali
Member at Large

Karim graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology (SFU) and Occupational Therapy (UBC). After working in the pharmaceutical industry for a number of years, he found his passion in the education field, where he currently owns and operates a number of supplemental learning centre’s in the Lower Mainland.

Children at UA: 2

building the board

Board Nominations Invitation

At Urban Academy we’re always seeking innovative, motivated, and community minded individuals to be appointed to our Board of Directors for a renewable two-year term.

All Candidates must:
  • Understand and support the Urban Academy Vision, Mission and Values
  • Be prepared to contribute 10 – 15 hours per month in Board and committee work
  • Be prepared to sign a confidentiality and Board Commitment Agreement upon appointment to the Board.
Ideally candidates will possess skills or experience in one or more of the following areas:
  • Board or Executive Director roles
  • Business Development experience in an Independent School or non-profit environment, either as a volunteer or paid employee
  • Community Engagement/Communications
  • Financial Management or Accounting
  • Fundraising/Advancement work
  • Legal or Strategic Management
  • Marketing/Public Relations work

Individuals may nominate themselves, or be nominated by another person providing that person has the prior consent of the prospective candidate.

To get started, contact us today

The right education takes your child from remembering and reciting to knowing and understanding.

Stop imagining. Start achieving.

inquire today

Staff Directory

Our diverse team is comprised of thinkers, innovators, movers and shakers.

learn more +

Welcome Message

We would like to welcome you to explore the school and learn about what is possible in education.

learn more +

Parent Auxiliary

Parent involvement is a cornerstone of our success.

learn more +

Advancement Plan

Our advancement plans help us develop facilities and programs for our students.

learn more +

Donate to UA

We strive to create a place that is inclusive and dynamic, your donations help us make it happen.

learn more +

Admissions

Our team works hard to make the application process easy, guiding you and determining if Urban Academy is the right fit.

learn more +