Our Team

Meet Our Team

Each member of the AMCES team brings a unique mix of skills, knowledge and experience to their dealings with clients. Together, we represent over 300 years of experience and success with associations. We maintain a network of skilled and qualified professionals that are contracted when their specific skills are required. Our unique team make-up allows us to provide timely, flexible and relevant outsourcing solutions for the best results. Visit our profiles below and see how our experience and passion can bring results for your association today. In addition to our bios, you can check out our Social Media profiles as well. If you would like to learn more about how you can join our team, please click here.

Nancy has more than 25 years of experience in industry, government and the association sector. Nancy is a Partner with AMCES and is responsible for leading the association management practice.  During the past 20 years, Nancy has provided consulting, Executive Director and association management services to the not-for-profit sector and has been directly involved in: 

  • Designing and facilitating strategic planning processes 
  • Developing processes and tools for strategy implementation
  • Working with boards to support effective governance 
  • Designing and facilitating processes for board orientation and assessment
  • Developing and delivering board development programs 
  • Developing and implementing organizational infrastructure including administrative, financial and membership systems 
  • Creating and managing communication tools and working with volunteers to design and deliver educational programming
  • Conducting surveys and developing membership recruitment and sponsorship programs 
  • Leading advocacy initiatives and developing strategic relationships

Nancy is a graduate of the University of Waterloo, a trained facilitator, a Certified Association Executive (CAE) and an Accredited Director (Acc.Dir.)

Jim has more than 40 years of experience in industry, three levels of government, associations, consulting and teaching.

For sixteen years he served as a CEO with not-for-profits and for the last 22 years has consulted with over 180 not-for-profit and Aboriginal organizations. Jim is Managing Partner of Association Management, Consulting & Evaluation Services (AMCES). AMCES specializes in start-ups, turnarounds and helping good not-for-profits get better.

Jim has been a key leader in the not-for-profit community and has served as the chief volunteer for six professional organizations including a term as Chair of the Canadian Society of Association Executives.

 A collection of his many articles from the magazine "Association" are available in the publication “Learning Links”. His book, "Benchmarking and Best Practices for Associations" published by the Canadian Society of Association Executives is one of their bestsellers and is used by progressive managers and in the Certified Association Executive program. He is co-author of another publication "Best Practices and Tools for Not-for-Profit Boards". He is co-editor and a contributing author of Canada’s first association management textbook “Canadian Association Management”.

His publication “Successful Meetings for Not-Profit Volunteer Leaders and Staff” is becoming a must read for volunteer leaders. His publication "Association Management Evaluation Toolkit - Recognizing Success and Identifying Opportunities for Improvement" is used by leaders looking to improve their practices. These publications illustrate Jim’s insight into not-for-profit organizations, their issues and practices.

His publication "First Nations Accountability and Strategic Management" is used in the Aboriginal Finance Officers Association of Canada’s Strategy and Decisions course. He also co-authored "Best Practices and Tools in Finance and Management for First Nation and Aboriginal Organizations" with Romeo Crow Chief. He is also a significant contributor to AFOA Ontario’s Financial Administration Policies and Procedures – Reference Manual. He contributed to the development of two new publications for the First Nations Health Managers Association, “First Nations Health Managers – Governance, Strategy, Policy and Decision-Making Tools”and “First Nation Health Managers – Human Resources, Programs and Support Services Toolbox”. He is also an editor and author of "Management of First Nations Health Services: Developing, Delivering and Evaluating", this publication is required reading in a certification program . He recently co-authored "First Nations Health Managers - Health Services Integration Toolbox" and "First Nations Health Managers - Accreditation Toolbox".

Jim develops management and leadership courses and instructs/coaches online courses for not-for-profit organizations including the Aboriginal Financial Officers Association of Canada and the First Nation Health Managers Association. He was the lead instructor and content developer for the Canadian Society of Association Executives, Certified Association Executive program for 17 years.  Through his delivery of courses and research he has been exposed to hundreds of organizations and their challenges and solutions. He has seen the good, the bad and the ugly.

Jim's skills include developing visions, strategic  thinking and strategies, partnerships, innovations, facilitating, business analysis and getting the best out of people. His projects have involved:

  • developing strategic and operational plans
  • governance, evaluations, and board development 
  • policy analysis and development
  • interim leadership and coaching       
  • mergers and shared services 
  • communications and marketing initiatives
  • education programs, online and regular courses, workshops and exam development 
  • instruction and training services
  • certification and accreditation programs
  • feasibility and risk studies, benchmarking projects, and  surveys and evaluations
  • and many other types of specialized projects

In addition he has over 20 years of experience working with Aboriginal organizations exploring challenges and opportunities and developing solutions in the areas of training, strategic planning facilitation, governance, performance management, financial management, accountability, evaluations, building educational content and institution building.

Jim is an MBA, Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA), Certified Management Accountant (CMA), Certified Association Executive (CAE), Certified Aboriginal Financial Manager (CAFM) and a Certified Management Consultant (CMC). He was recently named a Fellow (FCMC) with the Institute of Certified Management Consultants of Ontario

Ian has more than 25 years of experience in industry, government, education and the association sector.

For the past 25 years, Ian has held board and consulting roles in the not-for-profit sector, providing expertise on strategic planning, human resource management, fundraising, event planning, program coordination, project management, media relations, and government advocacy & lobbying.

In industry, Ian has worked as a Director of Human Resources in the IT sector and in various marketing management roles. Most recently, Ian has been a Professor and Coordinator in Strategy, Management, HR and Leadership at Algonquin College and is an author on the 8th Canadian edition of a Management text through Pearson Canada.

Ian has served on the board of various organizations including the Kanata Food Cupboard, the Capital City Condors and the Ottawa Senators Alumni Charity Hockey Classic. Ian has his CAE and has worked with the Education Committee of the National Capital Chapter of the Canadian Society of Association Executives. Ian also has more than 20 years of experience coaching adult and youth competitive hockey and soccer. He is a Registered Professional Recruiter (RPR) and Registered Professional Trainer (RPT)

Click here to read more about how Ian can assist your Not-for-Profit Organization with customized solutions.

Dana possesses considerable breadth of experience with over 20 years in such positions as Executive Director, General Manager, Chief Operations Officer and Director of Government Relations.

Dana is currently an Association Management consultant and instructs the CAE 200 module of the CAE certification course. He has lived in Ottawa for the past five years with his wife Nadine and their three boys.

Dana is strategically oriented and has facilitated strategic plans for over 12 years for a variety of organizations. In addition to strategic planning, Dana has undertaken roles such as developing marketing and communication strategies, benchmarking, evaluation strategies, analysis and implementation recommendations for the new not-for-profit corporations act, created and analysed surveys and much more.

Dana is very successful at building relationships and applying his skills to a wide variety of challenges. Dana specializes in strategic communications and segmenting markets to improve communication efficiency.

With a very solid academic foundation (MBA and CAE), including teaching university courses in Leadership, Business Strategy, and Consumer Behavior, he brings together the: academic, in determining a course of action to address a challenge; and the practical, in adding his experience to meeting the needs presented by the challenges. Dana authored the Membership Recruitment and Retention chapter in edition two of Canadian Association Management textbook and the ‘Fundraising’ chapter in edition one. He has authored articles on membership service, networking and service delivery and presented at conferences across Canada on the member experience, service delivery, volunteer management, relations and retention, technology and amalgamation.

Mara has over 10 years experience in the not-for-profit sector in certification, education, project and event management, and volunteer management.

A Certified Association Executive (CAE), Mara excels at association management, providing board and volunteer support, strategic management techniques and structuring organizations based on best practices. She brings a wealth of knowledge in operational systems, processes and change management. Mara has a talent for finding solutions to the unique challenges faced by associations.

Mara has extensive project management experience, planning the largest academic conference in Canada for years. She excels at creating strategic paths and implementing projects, while maintaining client perspectives and incorporating a strong customer experience. She is highly organized individual who thrives in fast-paced environments and facilitates collaborations between key stakeholders, working together for success.

Mara is incredibly passionate about volunteerism within associations and the community. For the past two years she also volunteered as a member on the Canadian Society of Association Executives (CSAE) Ottawa-Gatineau Young Professional Committee. She also volunteers as the Chair for her son’s school council where she advises on governance, fundraising, and communications.

Mara holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English from Carleton University, with a minor in Indigenous Studies and a Diploma in Culinary Management from Algonquin College. From customer service to managing corporate accounts, Mara always works hard to pursue the best possible outcome for clients.

When she is not working hard, she is (albeit very slowly) undertaking home renovations, cooking up a storm, and chasing her two boys around. She also loves coffee, dogs, and appropriate use of the Oxford comma.

Gisele has worked in both the association and corporate sectors for over 35 years.

She specializes in developing and implementing systems and processes in the areas of finance, administration and membership management. Gisele has served as Administrator for a variety of associations including the Canadian Association of Broadcasters, the Canadian Broadcasters’ Rights Agency, the Canadian Organization of Medical Physicists and the Canadian College of Physicists in Medicine.

Gisele has strong organizational and problem-solving skills and works effectively with others to achieve results. She has organized a variety of conferences and events. Gisele is bilingual (English and French).

Georges has over 27 years of senior management experience in the non-for-profit sector including professional, and trade associations.

During this time he has developed significant expertise in such fields as organizational evaluation and development, strategic and operational planning, and professional certification and accreditation.

In his consulting practice Georges will be focusing on the following service areas:

  • Evaluating organizational structures, plans, programs, and processes
  • Reviewing and facilitating strategic planning exercises and plan development
  • Developing and implementing surveys and research to inform management
  • Assessing professional certification and accreditation programs and facilitating their development
  • Evaluating and helping to develop communications and marketing strategies and initiatives
  • Reviewing, revising, and assisting in the development of bylaws, regulations and policies
  • Identifying best practices and establishing benchmarking methodologies
  • Providing advice and assistance with the development of member products and services
  • Reviewing public policy positions and advising on government relations initiatives
  • Developing international program delivery strategies

Georges is fluent in both official languages and holds a Masters degree in Public Administration (MPA) from Carleton University.

Sarah has over 5 years of administrative experience in both the corporate and not-for-profit sectors. She works with a variety of AMCES clients, specializing in member engagement, evaluation and communications. 

Sarah has an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology, with a concentration in law and social policy from Bishop's University. In 2017, Sarah earned a Graduate Certificate in international development and project management from Humber College. Sarah is currently pursuing her Certified Association Executive designation.

Sarah has worked internationally in both Africa and Asia. She is committed to team success and personal and professional growth. 

David has over 15 years of experience in the not-for-profit and charities sector and has worked as Executive Director for three national organizations.

His areas of expertise include finance and administration, education and event management as well as governance, policy, marketing and program development. David has successfully developed, implemented and managed a number of major events and sponsorship programs for national associations.

Over the last 6 years, David has been involved in providing association management services for a number of AMCES’ clients and has sat on Boards and Committees of local associations.

David has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Carleton University with a concentration in marketing and human resources. He earned the Certified Association Executive (CAE) designation in 2014.

CJ is a leading public affairs specialist with over 16 years of expertise in the areas of government relations, research and analysis, project management, executive training and message development.

CJ has been with AMCES since 2014. She has acquired specialized skills through experiences such as serving as a senior adviser to federal cabinet ministers and as a vice-president at a top public affairs and communications firm. She has further developed her expertise through executive education and professional development, as well as through numerous community activities.

Cathy Jo has an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo.

She recently graduated from the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program (AALP) at the Rural Ontario Institute, University of Guelph.

CJ has enhanced her professional development through training in leadership, change management, team synergy, conflict resolution, negotiations, media skills and board governance.

CJ is committed to contributing her experience to the community through participation in a number of initiatives. Recent projects include co-chairing an auction fundraiser for the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program and leading a branding project for the Ottawa Farmer's Market. She also regularly volunteers with the Ottawa Food Bank and the Canadian Arthritis Association.

Lindsay has worked with AMCES since 2013 supporting a variety of clients throughout the years. 

Lindsay is energetic, enthusiastic and committed to providing excellent client service with her exceptional communication and organizational skills. 

Prior to working with AMCES, Lindsay worked with the Forum for International Trade and Training (FITT) where she provided membership, database and administrative support. 

Lindsay is a graduate from the Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Sciences, with a diploma in Business Marketing. 

Dawna is an association management executive with more than 30 years of experience and leadership in the not-for profit health care sector.

Dawna is the Executive Director for the Canadian Society of Association Executives, Ottawa-Gatineau Network. Most recently, she was executive director of the Academy of Medicine Ottawa for 17 years and prior to that, was with the Canadian Medical Association for 14 years.

Dawna’s experience includes strategic planning, governance, policy and program development, communications, developing and implementing educational and professional development conferences and seminars and organizing meetings and events. She has had influence in the medical and social services communities through developing and strengthening partnerships and stakeholder relations.

She is a recipient of the United Way’s Community Builder Award, the Ontario Medical Association’s Community Service Award and most recently received a Medal for Significant Contribution from the Military Family Resource Centre. She was responsible for establishing a bursary for medical students at uOttawa who are in financial need and organized annual fundraising golf tournaments to support these medical trainees. 
Dawna is a catalyst and strategic planner who is resourceful, member-driven and results-oriented.

Chris is a digital strategist and communications professional with more than 16 years of experience. He speaks and consults with companies and organizations that span the private and high tech sectors, federal, provincial, and municipal governments, non-for-profit associations, and the North American start up community.

His specialties include: communications and operations technology; digital strategy and marketing; community management; social media; intellectual property management; and web, print, and digital asset management and development.  He has extensive experience in custom developed software, applications, and UI/UX, and prides himself on a results oriented and analytical approach to meeting milestones and achieving goals.

Chris specializes in technology and tactical communications to support and advance not-for-profit associations’ strategic plans. In addition, he is available to serve as a part-time chief technology officer on an ongoing contractual basis.

When working with an organization he applies a three step approach that involves:

  • Assessment. Listening to stakeholders and creating a defined and accurate reference to fully understand the needs. This step also includes determining what the long- term and short-term goals of an organization are, proactively anticipating changes or developments, and balancing that against budget, lead time and scalability.
  • Identification. Determining the best solution for the need based on products or services that can either be custom developed or purchased.
  • Implementation. Seamlessly integrating the identified solution into an organization’s infrastructure or work flow and ensuring that it is being used to the best of its ability.

Chris has been featured in Ottawa Business Journal, Beta Kit, Tech Vibes, CBC, and Buzz Feed.  

He has also been involved with organizations such as the Founder’s Institute as a mentor and advisor to young entrepreneurs and local startups where he shares his advice as a technology and communications professional.