Guests 2017


Deputy Minister Alexander Bezzina
Alexander Bezzina was appointed Deputy Minister for the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration effective October 2016. Prior to this he served as the Deputy Minister for the Ministry of Children and Youth Services since March 2012. Since joining the Ontario Public Services (OPS) in 1999, Mr. Bezzina has held senior executive roles in the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Government Services, the Ministry of Children and Youth Services, the Ministry of Community and Social Services and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. Prior to working in the Ontario Public Service, Mr. Bezzina worked for 17 years in non-profit organizations serving the needs of persons with disabilities and other vulnerable residents of Toronto, Waterloo Region, and Wellington County. Mr. Bezzina also developed curriculum and was an instructor in the Continuing Education Department of Conestoga College.



Deborah Legrove

As the President of crawfordconnect, Deborah’s goal is to help Canada’s nonprofit organizations make positive changes to our world.

Deborah brings a depth of experience to crawfordconnect from her 30 years of work in healthcare, social services and higher education in Canada and the USA. Since 1999 she has been connecting Canada’s charities and nonprofits with executives, managers and fundraisers who have the experience, skills and confidence that enable these organizations to achieve their objectives.

She has served as Chief Executive Officer of a healthcare foundation and advised senior leadership in multiple complex capital campaigns. Deborah believes that longevity with an organization should be 5 years and her track record supports this. Her career began in the US with IDC/IDC Canada for the first 5 years. She moved on to The Toronto East General Hospital Foundation for the next 5 years and spent 10 years with DVA Navion (capital campaign consulting, where she also began her executive search career supporting her non-profit clients). Prior to buying crawfordconnect in 2010, she led a national advancement program for The Canadian MedicAlert Foundation.

A CFRE since 2002, Deborah has served many leadership roles within the Association of Fundraising Professionals, locally and nationally. She currently sits on the board of the AFP Foundation for Philanthropy – Canada. She has also served on the boards of organizations such as The Dorothy Ley Hospice.

Deborah is a popular speaker and writer, frequently called upon by nonprofit associations and groups to share her insights regarding leadership search, retention and sustainability. She holds a Bachelor of Arts (University of Guelph) and has completed the Institute of Corporate Directors Not for Profit Governance Essentials course.

Bill Hozy

As Director of Talent Management with crawfordconnect since 2015, Bill Hozy has delivered succession planning, performance management, compensation, and policy solutions to the private, public and non-profit sectors since 1991. As an executive advisor with Ontario Hydro Human Resources, he undertook key projects in staff planning and mergers and acquisitions integration.

In 2002, Bill was a founding partner of EnerSpectrum Group, a consulting firm that specialized in the LDC sector with a range of technical and management services, leading the staff planning and regulatory reporting practices. In 2009, he divested his share of the firm, and launched to offer a suite of services in planning, performance, and policy with a focus on ease-of use tools and processes for small and medium sized organizations. His clients include Hydro One Brampton, Burlington Hydro, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), Alzheimer Society of York Region, and regulatory bodies.

Alison Stevens 

Alison is a professional with over 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector, specializing in organizational development, volunteerism and community development. She thrives on building community and connecting individuals for the benefits of personal growth, social impact and community health. While passionate about the community sector, she strongly believes in collaboration across all sectors – public, private and community – in order to achieve collective goals. As the Executive Director of the Volunteer Bureau of Montreal for many years, she worked in collaboration with volunteer centres in Quebec and across Canada as well as with of hundreds of community partners. Alison spent several years coordinating and developing the Centre’s training program, primarily in the management and mobilization of volunteer resources, and has offered hundreds of training sessions, participated in roundtables and discussions about issues related to volunteers and volunteerism. She is currently serving as Volunteer Centre Liaison for Volunteer Canada.

Gary MacDonald

Gary brings 42 years of experience in non-profit leadership and is known for his ability to inspire and motivate clients to achieve excellence in their own work and enhance the performance of their organizations. Gary is a dynamic facilitator with extensive proficiency developing communication and leadership competency skills with individuals and groups. His clients include leaders in government, business and the non-profit sector. In the fundraising arena, he coaches non-profits and their leadership in achieving higher levels of quality connectedness with their partners (donors), generating real results. Gary loves 3 things: his wife & family, non-profits, and movie theatre popcorn (with real butter). Gary is Founding Partner at Clearview Consulting in Stirling, Ontario. He leads a team of 8 professional facilitators. Gary also serves as Allied Counsel with KMA Consultants in Toronto and is a Facilitator at Loyalist Training and Knowledge Centre in Belleville.

Melina Condren

Melina is Volunteer Toronto’s Director of Engaging Organizations, overseeing all of its services and programs for non-profits. Melina strives to ensure Volunteer Toronto’s services are effectively helping non-profits build capacity through volunteer engagement, meeting the ever-evolving needs of the voluntary sector. She has a Master’s degree in social psychology, with extensive knowledge of research methods, quantitative and qualitative data analysis, and program evaluation. She is Volunteer Toronto’s resident expert on needs assessment and evaluation tools, and has taught volunteer managers across the province about evaluation for volunteer programs.


Paula Coons

Paula, the Director of Operations for Volunteer Ottawa, holds a Business Accounting diploma from Algonquin College. Paula has more than twelve years of experience in the Ottawa non-profit sector, managing volunteers, events, finances & programs, including a successful Employer-Supported Volunteerism program (VO Connect).  She lives near Ottawa, enjoys crafting and writes a cooking blog in her free time.


Brenda Snider

Brenda has been involved in the Not For Profit world for over 17 years as a Fund Developer, Volunteer Manager and Executive Director. She began her career at the Canadian National Institute for the Blind and joined Volunteer & Information Quinte in 2005 as Manager of Volunteer Services. In 2010 she accepted the Executive Director position. In 2011 Brenda was nominated and received the award Remarkable Woman of the Year through the Intelligencer for her dedication and commitment to her work, family and volunteer involvement in the community. Under her leadership VIQ has developed volunteer programs for youth, seniors and business professionals and established six Satellite offices. Brenda is an active volunteer in the community she sits on the Board of Directors of Big Brothers Big Sisters Hastings and Prince Edward County, Habitat for Humanity H&PEC and Belleville Rotary Club. Brenda is the mother of two and enjoys spending family time with her children and husband.


Sammy Feilchenfeld

Sammy is Volunteer Toronto’s Training Coordinator, providing on-site, on-demand and online training for volunteer managers across Toronto. Trained as a high school educator, Sammy enjoys employing new educational technology in curriculum development and especially loves teaching and training professional learners. Sammy brings a wealth of knowledge from interactions with non-profit organizations and is a subject matter expert in volunteer legislation, policies & procedures and diversity.