Board of Directors

 

Meet the Board

Rev. Dr. Karen Hamilton

Rev. Dr. Karen Hamilton

Rev. Dr. Karen Hamilton is the former General Secretary of The Canadian Council of Churches, having served 15 years in that national and international role. The CCC is the broadest ecumenical council in the world, representing 85% of the Christians in Canada and includes 25 member denominations and its operating division Project Ploughshares.

During her tenure at the CCC, Dr. Hamilton built a 47-member interfaith, academic and NGO coalition that hosted the 2010 Interfaith Leaders Summit to challenge and inspire the G8 and G20, a coalition that was awarded a global prize for ‘Best Practices in Interfaith Dialogue’. She is the founding chair of the Canadian Interfaith Conversation and the Our Whole Society Conference and has received national awards for ecumenical and interfaith leadership.

Her award-winning book, The Acceptable Year of The Lord: Preaching the Old Testament with Faith, Finesse and Fervour was published by Novalis as were her books, Living with the Old Testament and Living with the Psalms.

She has travelled extensively in the Middle East and Africa, including Afghanistan, Syria, and also Al-Andalusia and has led ground breaking three faiths study tours to Israel and Palestine. She has a leading role in a unique three faiths study course based in Jerusalem.

Her eight languages, at various levels of proficiency, include French, Italian, Hebrew and Arabic.

She has served the World Federalist Movement for over 20 years as national chair and a member of the international executive and is also the national ecumenical chair for the Order of St. Lazarus, a chivalric and service-oriented body with a 1000 year old international history.

Dr. Hamilton served as co-chair of The Parliament of the World’s Religions Toronto Board, the largest global interfaith gathering and writes on the subjects of interfaith dialogue and religious leaders engagement domestically and in global theatres of conflict.

She enjoys much time with her grandchildren and playing the piano.

Rev. Dr. John Joseph Mastandrea

Rev. Dr. John Joseph Mastandrea

The Rev. Dr. John Joseph Mastandrea became Minister of the Congregation at Manor Road United Church in May 2019 after 19 years at Metropolitan United Church. Interfaith Toronto Police Services Police Chaplain for 51 Division.

John Joseph cut his teeth in the Etobicoke area of Toronto, the son of a Police Officer, Nick Mastandrea  and now resides in Cabbagetown,

He has BSc. In Chemistry, M.Div.,M.R.E, M.A.M.S degrees , all from the University of Toronto. John Joseph completed his Doctorate from Chicago Theological Seminary, May 2019 Ordained in 1989, he is a certified Labyrinth Facilitator and Spiritual Director following in the footsteps of Ignatius Loyola and Teresa of Avila. John Joseph is the Toronto  Police Multifaith Chaplain to 51 Division. Married in 2004 to  his  husband Bill  Calkins. Recently John Joseph  Co-Chaired of the Parliament of World Religions Toronto 2018.  November 2018 completed a course in First Nations Education. In September 2018 John Joseph received the Order of  St. George.  Assist Padre to the 78th Fraser Highlanders, York Garrison. Chevalier and Assistant Padre the Order of Saint George. Multifaith Chaplain to the Toronto 2017, Invictus games. John Joseph believes in nurturing body, mind and spirit. Monday to Friday at the local gym, reading and meditating daily  weaves three key components of life. Nurture for self to nurture for others.

 John Joseph has served congregations from the Maritimes, Saskatchewan, northern Ontario and rural Quebec to urban and suburban parts of the Greater Toronto Area.

John Joseph was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal in October 2012.

He represented Canada as a delegate to the World Council of Churches in Geneva, Switzerland, in February 1990. This year John Joseph says farewell to Metropolitan United Church after 19 years. The new pathway takes him to  Manor Road United Church where he has been called. This  June 2020 marked the 31st Anniversary of  John  Joseph’s anniversary of Ordination  in the United Church of Canada.

Today John Joseph seeks to meet people where they are and build the capacity for relationships between people in a diverse spectrum of society.

Diana Alli D’Souza

Diana Alli D’Souza

Diana Alli D’Souza has held many distinguished positions at the Faculty of Medicine (FoM) & across University of Toronto (UofT) for nearly four decades as: Senior Officer, Business Officer, Admissions Officer, Awards Officer and UofT Diversity representative nationally. She has left her indelible mark through her tireless contributions in enhancing the student experience at UofT and across Toronto. A passionate trailblazer on social r+esponsibility, she has founded and co-founded over 21 outreach programs serving underrepresented and marginalized populations in the GTA, from mentoring and tutoring, to assistance for the homeless and isolated seniors. She has spearhead global scale benefit concerts that have raised tens of thousands of dollars for marginalized children.

Diana has served on numerous Board of Directors including UofT’s Governing  Council for six years, Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund (Canada), Build our Wealth, Change Your Future (Learning Partnership Canada), Woodgreen Community Service, and UofT’s task forces and committees. She is the recipient of multitude of awards: 12 awards given to her by the graduation medical classes for excelling the students experience; U of T’s Centre for Health Promotion individual award; 2001 UofT Chancellor’s Award; co-recipient of the Faculty of Medicine’s Aikins esteemed teaching award,  UofT’s Arbor Alumni Award, the national Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Northeast Group on Student Affairs for student advocacy, most esteemed Order of Ontario and the 2012 Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.

The Canadian medical students established The Clinician Investigator Trainee Association of Canada (CITAC) “Diana Alli Community Service Award” to MD-PhD students nationwide for “national and global impact, and the FoM Diana Alli Award to graduating MD student for enhancing student life and community outreach.

Her continued interest in altruism and social responsibility has led her to inspire youth and engage our elderly, globally, through “Access Empowerment Council”. For the past 8 years since her retirement Diana spends approximately six months a year as a Philanthropist and English Teacher serving the most marginalized Indigenous children and laborers yearning for more prosperous lives in Rishikesh, Himalayas. She is one of the Best Selling International co-author with LWL Publishing House writing anthologies writing personal stories from tragedies that bring hope to many. 

She is grateful to be spend her retirement years with her large family including 9 grandkids.

Zul Kassamali

Zul Kassamali

For over 45 years, Zul Kasamali has used his life for the purpose of making impactful changes to benefit the lives of those in our communities. Zul has worked tirelessly to overcome prejudices and to right social injustices. Zul’sapproach to overcoming challenges is done so through positive action and community collaboration. Zul’sexperience ranges from establishing, managing and working with not-for-profit, interfaith and other community organizations, sitting on many boards, commissions and councils.

Zul has been a part of number of notable organizations and held positions of change, as listed: serving as the Governor of Seneca CollegeThe National Council of Welfare for CanadaOntario Health Quality Council and Panel Judge on Registered Insurance Brokers of Ontario.As a member of the Premier’s Round Table on Elder Abuse providing input on challenges facing the aging population

Zul was also one of the Eight Ontarians selected on the Tsunami Spirit Team.
Conciliation and Arbitration Board of Ontario. While serving on the His Highness The Aga Khan Council for OntarioZul was committed to supporting the organization in breaking the cycle of poverty while supporting the development of strong, healthy and inclusive communities to reach their potentials. Furthermore, Zul also served as Convenor, Institute of Ismail Studies, United KingdomNotably, Zul has attended all the G8 -G20 World Religious Conferences, including the World Religions for Peace conference in Vienna. 

Zul is also the Honorary Chief of the Toronto Police.Currently he is the President of The National Alliance for the Advancement of Pluralistic Societies. (1NAAS) and President Toronto Area Interfaith Council. The mission of the organization is to support the development of pluralism in Canada and internationally by engaging young people and others in society in ways through which they can seek to uphold the value of pluralism. 

Furthermore, Zul serves on the listed organizations supporting the well-being of the community: President, Pluralism in MotionCo-Chair RCMP Diversity CouncilCo-Chair Toronto Police SWACCC, member Chief’s Advisory Council Toronto PolicePresident Multicultural Council for Ontario Seniors,Vice President Association of Progressive Muslims of CanadaCo-Chair Canadian Interfaith ConversationVice President Canadian Foundation of Asian CultureTreasurer, The Pluralist FoundationVice Chair Social Services NetworkMember Ontario Seniors Secretariat Liaison committee for Health & Long Term CareRegional member Service Canada SAC, and the founding member of the Family Violence Conference. (The South Asian Perspective).

Zul’s work has been honored through awards listed:Queen’s Diamond Jubilee MedalPremier of Ontario Community Service Award, Toronto Police Services Excellence Achievement Award and Toronto Police Honorary Detective Badge. 

The following statement imbodies Zul’s passion for the work he does as a settler in this great nation:
“To work towards a society where the elderly arerespected and cared for, where youths are encouraged and supported to achieve their full potential and where people from all walks of life come together as a harmonious Canadian Society”

Mohamed Bhyat

Mohamed Bhyat

Mohamed’s academic background is very broad (BA Hons. Geography/Geology, MSc Remote Sensing, Post Graduate Diploma Exploration Geology, MSc Environmental Science/Geographic Information Systems) and encompasses considerable business and managerial experience as well. His professional experience has been gained in Canada, the Netherlands, Belgium, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa Nigeria, Panama and Nicaragua.

Mohamed has been intimately involved in IT strategy development (particularly in the public sector) in South Africa since his return to the country in 1995. His work has involved both operational as well as strategy development, which has given him a particularly good insight into the development and positioning of solutions into organizations.

His work has involved business strategy development, business process re-engineering, change management, Knowledge Management and IT in leadership and governance and the role of IT in Growth and Development Strategies. In these projects he was involved at every level from ‘translating’ the business to business and linking the development of IS/ IT strategies to relevant legislation (e.g. National Water Act; Water Service Act); IS/ IT architecture development; BPR, Change Management, SAP implementation; CRM strategy, Knowledge Management.

Mohamed has also been involved in utility scale photo-voltaic solar plants, energy storage solutions and associated micro grids. With his consortium partners this involved Design, Engineering, and Procurement & Construction (EPC) of photovoltaic solar (Solar PV) plants and energy storage solutions with the express purpose of supplying electricity to mining companies, large-scale industrial complexes, technology parks, and Local and Provincial Governments in Southern Africa. 

In the “digital age” of knowledge based economies success requires insights into how business thinks, how government and other stakeholders think and how to marry those with technology and social responsibilities. This requires a global perspective on development, business, politics and technology. 

Mohamed’s extensive multi-disciplinary experience, not only in his professional areas such as in knowledge management, information technology and information systems, the environmental sciences, geology and mining but also as a successful business person allows him to deal with these issues.

His work in many varied political, cultural and socio-economic milieus, locally and internationally has enabled him to deal with equal ease, with both technical and business issues. He understands them both, what motivates them and can speak their respective languages. This also applies to the subtleties with which to deal with issues that may be culturally and politically sensitive.

Charles Hill

Charles Hill

Charles Hill is an experienced telecommunications executive with over 30 years in the industry. Over those years, he held Senior Management and Executive positions ranging from Finance, Budget & Results, Customer Service Centers, Retail and Wholesale Sales, Marketing, Strategic Planning, Engineering, Service Provisioning and Operations. He has strong skills in the Operational management of large staff groups in both Customer and Network Operations and was extremely focused on results performance and cost control, with the ability to work cross functionally within any organization. During his 30-year career with Bell Canada he served as Vice President – Operations, Vice President Process Support, Senior Director of Core Network Facilities for Canada, and the USA and completed an eight-year international telecom assignment in Europe.

Charles retired from Bell Canada in July 2005 and established a sole proprietor business for management consulting.   He also worked as an Executive with Manulife Financial re-assessing their Telecommunications operations and technical designs that resulted in several recommendations and implemented a number of projects to reduce costs and improve performance. He has worked in several countries in the Middle East as Vice President of Business Development and Operations for NTG Clarity Networks, a telecoms and IT provider.

He also has consulted on several Military, E Commerce, and Environment companies which include the American Military Institute and Homeland Security. Charles was the COO for two start up companies working within the Mining community for wireless network applications and environment initiatives. He currently is supporting a number of charity organizations and Board positions and is the Grand Prior of Canada and the America’s for the Order of St. George. Charles has developed an exclusive list of senior contacts in both the Financial and Telecommunications field locally and on an international basis. 

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