2019 -20 Board of Directors

Anthony Fast

Client Care Specialist

3rd Year on the Board of Directors

BIO Before and during university, Anthony Fast worked with families and children during his summers working at a community daycare, and helped first-year students transition to university life through his work with University of Victoria Residence Life & Education. After starting a job at Credit Counselling Society, Anthony began volunteering as a board member for the Mount Pleasant Family Centre Society in 2016 to pursue his passion for creating connections and building a supportive community. One of the reasons Anthony loves living in Vancouver is for the outdoor activities available in and around the city; never discouraged by a bit of rain, Anthony enjoys hiking, biking, and skiing in his spare time.

Favourite Quote:  "Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible." - Unknown

Ellen Gukova

Certified Financial Planner

Board of Directors: Treasurer

4th Year on the Board of Directors

Favourite Quote: 

James Dermer

Business Owner

Board of Directors: Director

1st Year on the Board of Directors

BIO James was born and raised in East Van and currently lives in the Mt. Pleasant / Cedar Cottage area with his wife and their 2 year old son. He has a diploma of Small Business Entrepreneurship and works as the operations manager for his family's business. James can often be found singing songs about itsy bitsy spiders at the MPFCS drop-in center, running laps around Trout Lake, or cycling the city with a baby chariot in tow. He also volunteers for community events as a Medical First Responder and has enjoyed his first year on the MPFCS Board of Directors.

Favourite Quote: "Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do."- Von Goethe

Michelle Horn

Program Manager

Board of Directors: Director

1st Year on the Board of Directors

Bio Michelle Horn has lived in East Vancouver for many years, and enjoys exploring all the parks and playgrounds with her two young children. Michelle is a Program Manager at BC Children's Hospital, working in child and youth mental health. Having been a regular at the Mount Pleasant Family Centre with her young children, she was inspired to join the Board after seeing the connection and care that was offered through the Family Centre. 

Favourite Quote: "We're all so busy chasing the extraordinary that we forget to stop and be grateful for the ordinary." - Brene Brown

Klara Cigankova

Primary Caregiver

Board of Directors: Director

1st Year on the Board of Directors

BIO Klara moved to Vancouver in 2012 from Czech Republic and is now raising her 1.5-year-old son. The city has quickly become her second home and she loves going for long walks, exploring every corner of the city, and digging in her balcony garden. The MPFCS has been an extended family to her and fills a very important role in her everyday life. She is excited to be a part of the board and hopes to help many other families experience all the support and warmth that the MPFCS has to offer. 

Favourite Quote: "You have to always have something to look forward to; it can be a minor thing or a major thing, but you always have to have something to look forward to." Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Bernadett Askey

Interior Designer and Educator

6th Year on the Board of Directors

BIO Bernadett has her Interior Design Diploma and Bachelor of Science in Interior Design Degree. Her career ranges from being a Tutor, an Educator and an Independent Designer. She also earned her Masters in Education in Adult Education from Argosy University in 2015. Presently, she resides in Vancouver with her Graphic Designer husband and two young children. In her sparetime, she also enjoys illustrating children's stories.

Favourite Quote: If you teach a subject, you win, you lose; but if you teach a person, you'll win, no matter what the outcome!” -Unknown

Felicity Turner

Marketing Advisor/Primary Cargiver

2nd Year on the Board of Directors

BIO Felicity is mother of two girls - 4 and 1 year old. Since moving to Vancouver in February of 2016 from Austrailia, Felicty and her familiy have come love Vancouver and the community mindedness of the people in Mount Pleasant.

Favourite Quote: "Every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don't plan it, don't wait for it, just let it happen." Agent Dale Cooper, Twin Peaks.

Alexis Stoymenoff

Communication Specialist

2 Years on the Board of Directors

BIO Alexis is a nonprofit communications professional and former journalist, specializing in environmental and social justice. She is currently the Senior Communications and Engagement Specialist at West Coast Environmental Law, where she is focused on engaging people and connecting them with the knowledge and tools they need to create positive change. Before transitioning to the nonprofit sector, Alexis worked as a reporter in Vancouver covering local news, environmental and sustainability issues. As a resident of Mount Pleasant who cares deeply about cultivating community, Alexis is excited to be working with the Mount Pleasant Family Centre Society as a member of the board.

Favourite Quote: "Of all the paths you can take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt." -John Muir

Yazmin Vazquez

Primary Caregiver

3rd Year on the Board of Directors

BIO Yazmin is a homemaker who also serves as a Spanish Development Team contributor for ReadyRosie, an interactive early education tool that provides daily activities to do with children to help them prepare for school success. Yazmin was born and raised in Monterrey, Mexico. She moved to the US where she received a master’s degree in Early Childhood Education with a minor in Bilingual Education. Before becoming a mother, Yazmin spent 7 years doing what she was most passionate about, promote school readiness in Pre-K children from low-income families by enhancing their cognitive, social, and emotional development. Working as a Bilingual Teacher for a Federal program such as Head Start, she was able to build relationships with families that supported family well-being, and delivered a comprehensive early childhood education. Yazmin’s background and experience allows her to bring a multi-layered perspective to the board as a parent and advocate. Yazmin is excited to be able to have an impact in her new community through the Mount Pleasant Family Centre Society board, and hopes to bring enthusiasm and a “can-do” attitude to the team.

Favourite Quote: "Let us become the change we seek in the world." -Mahatma Gandhi

Madeleine Speck

Research Assistant

3rd Year on the Board of Directors

BIO Madeleine moved to Vancouver from Germany over 15 years ago and is calling Mount Pleasant her home. She works at the BC Children Hospital Research Institute in the field of immune regulation and in her spare time loves spending time with her 2 year old son and husband. Madeleine is very outdoor orientated and enjoys teaching her son all about nature. She is excited to work more with her local community by being a board member for the family center.

Favourite Quote: "To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all." - Oscar Wilde

Michelle Zapiola


2nd Year on the Board of Directors

BIO Michelle is a fourth year student at UBC studying Economics and International Relations. A former MPFCS attendee, she is thrilled to be back here once more, contributing to the wonderful community that gave her an amazing childhood.

Favourite Quote: "We have to be continually jumping off cliffs and dveloping wings on our way down." - Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

Satara Wolfe

 Primary Caregiver

2nd Year on the Board of Directors

BIO Satara currently raises three male human beings. Previous work includes natural resources and engineering fields in office management. She grew up in a small town BC but has called Vancouver home since 2003. Being part of this board is one way she gives back to the community that supported her family when her boys were little.

Favourite Quote: "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." - Tolstoy

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Mount Pleasant Family Centre invites families with children 0 to 6 years old to become a member. Members are entitled to free drop-in programming, a supervised playroom, a comfortable space for adults to talk and meet other parents and caregivers, and much more.

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