27 Million Voices' board members bring together an abundance of different skills and backgrounds. The board members' unique experiences and knowledge are valuable assets to the day-to-day operations and goals of the organization.
Allison Fedorkiw, Chair
Allison Fedorkiw (BSc. Human Ecology, M.A. International Studies) started her international career in the Ivory Coast, where she was engaged in HIV/AIDS awareness. It didn’t take long before she returned to travel much of West Africa, where she conducted research on both post-conflict reconciliation and child trafficking. Recognizing the overwhelming need to assist trafficked children, particularly those trafficked into rural agricultural labour, she started an initiative which was to become 27 Million Voices.
In Canada, Allison has had the opportunity to deliver anti-racism education from coast to coast, and she has worked with various marginalized populations including incarcerated youth, homeless, and immigrants and refugees. Previously, Allison worked as the Director of the Humanity Exchange, a social enterprise connecting talented volunteers with communities in need in Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America, and supervised the Community Relations Department during the construction of Endeavour’s Agbahou Gold Mine in Cote d’Ivoire.
Kate Russell, Vice Chair
Kate Russell (B.A. International Studies & Political Science) became involved with 27 Million Voices as a volunteer shortly after the organization's inception. In the summer of 2011, Kate was able to acquire external funding to allow her to hold an internship position with 27MV. She was engaged in organizational development and other capacity building measures. Following her placement she was elected onto the board, and initially served as Secretary General.
Kate has worked and volunteered with international organizations in Nepal, Mexico, and Ghana. In these countries, as well as within Canada, she has had the opportunity to be involved in many different philanthropic opportunities – mostly targeting children, youth, and vulnerable peoples. Kate’s interactions with various communities and peoples, during her work and travels, have shown her the benefits of volunteerism and building a community's capacity to affect change.
Christos Vardacostas, Treasurer
Christos Vardacostas (B.A. Economics, B.Comm., M.A.Development Economics Candidate) has been on the Board of Directors of 27 Million Voices from its inception in 2009 and has been the Board Chair since April 2010. He became involved with 27 Million Voices when Allison Fedorkiw, its founder, was first looking to put a Board together in 2009. Christos has more than a dozen years experience working in northern BC in healthcare administration and finance, social science research and most recently in economic development planning and management consulting for First Nations. In healthcare, he held specific roles as contract manager, recruiter, and capital accountant. He has also conducted research as an economist for the Canadian Forest Service. Christos has studied the social impacts of development activities on various developing country economies in his recent MA studies.Combined with his economic, business and social role background, he brings a diverse set of skills, knowledge and leadership to 27 Million Voices.
Tiara Dhenin, General Director
Tiara Dhenin (B.A International Studies & Development and Sustainability) joined 27 Million Voices to support communities affected by human trafficking and to continue her career in international development. Her ambition to learn about global diversity has led her from her home base in Canada to destinations such as West and West-Central Africa, South America, Southeast Asia, Australia, and New Zealand. She currently works as the program advisor for a social enterprise called The Humanity Exchange where she organizes international volunteer placements in West Africa and Colombia. Locally, she has volunteered with organizations that advocate for human rights and sustainable community development, and enjoys getting involved in events around her community.
Shaun Cormier, General Director
Shaun Cormier (B.A International Studies, LL.M International Law, MC Project Management) joined 27 Million Voices in 2016 as the newest member of the board. Shaun has traveled to over 40 countries and has volunteered in a number of developing countries in recent years. Joining 27 Million Voices was his way to have an impact on human trafficking in Canada as well as developing countries. Shaun has worked in the research field where he has published material on food security in Arctic regions of the world. Later he worked in Prince George with an non-profit society focused on affordable housing for Aboriginal Peoples in the area. Now he does project management in the Canadian Arctic.