Maureen Cormier Jackson, Chair

Maureen was a long-time resident of Fort McMurray, moving there in 1980 and making it home for 22 years. Her two children were born and raised in Fort McMurray and she was involved in the community in many ways. Maureen was President of the Wood Buffalo Environment Association, President of the Noralta Skating Club and Co-chair of the United Way campaign at Suncor, to name a few. She has stayed connected to the community through her work, her children and her friends.

Maureen has more than 35 years of executive, financial and operational experience in the oil and gas industry. Her career at Suncor spanned numerous roles, ultimately Senior Vice President, Chief Process and Information Officer until she retired in 2013. Maureen currently serves on the Board of Directors for Penn West Petroleum Ltd., Enerflex Ltd., and is on the Dean's Advisory Board for the Dean of Medicine at the University of Calgary. She currently resides in Calgary with her husband, Barry.


Linda Ball, Board Member

Linda lived in Fort McMurray for over 30 years where she, along with her husband Gord worked and raised their family. “It was a pleasure having so many opportunities to grow our skills and participate in the community". She was a founding board member of Leadership Wood Buffalo and received the Distinguished Citizenship Award from the Regional Municipality in 2006.

Linda first heard of Community Foundations about 10 years ago and is thrilled to help bring the movement to Wood Buffalo. “The business case for creating endowment funds and supporting community endeavors on the investment income is so strong. The funds will be available to the community for years to come”.

Linda currently lives with Gord in Vernon, British Columbia and they are also supporters of the North Okanagan Community Foundation.


Brenda Erskine, Board Member

Brenda lived in Fort McMurray for 28 years, during which she raised two amazing children and had the opportunity to explore a fulfilling career in Communications and Stakeholder Relations in the oil sands industry. Volunteer opportunities included the Arctic Winter Games, the Future Forward visioning process, and chairing the board of Wood Buffalo Housing and Development Corporation.

Brenda was awarded the Distinguished Citizenship Award by the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo in 2010, after which she moved to Calgary. She maintains close connections to Wood Buffalo via her children and grandchildren, and continues to find opportunities to work and volunteer in the community.  

Brenda was introduced to the concept of a community foundation for Wood Buffalo a decade ago, and has been thrilled to assist the Steering Committee  in making it a reality. 

"I want to ensure the next generation can enjoy the same opportunities and quality of life my family, friends and I enjoyed here. A community foundation offers autonomy, sustainability and potential. It's the best gift I can give."


Tony Mankowski, Board Member

Tony has been living and working in Fort McMurray for nearly 35 years and currently resides there with his wife Monica. Tony is a very active community leader and is presently Chair of the United Way Board of Directors and President of the Keyano College Foundation Board.


Jeanette Bancarz, Board Member

Jeanette Bancarz was drawn to Wood Buffalo in 2010 through a wonderful career opportunity with ATB Financial. Immersing herself in the social profit sector, Jeanette quickly became known as a community builder. "The big spirit of the region continues to engage me" reflects Jeanette. "I have met the most caring, community minded people here and they've helped me fall in love with Wood Buffalo".  Jeanette believes a community foundation is vital to the well being of our residents as we continue to build a stronger, more resilient tomorrow.



Mark Shaw is a proud retired stay-at-home Dad with a wonderful wife Teresa, and an enjoyable 16 year old son Jeffrey. During Mark's working career he enjoyed the opportunity to serve within Suncor Oil Sands, with roles such as VP Oilsands Sustainability which enabled him to lead the team that reclaimed the oilsands industry's first tailings pond into what is now known as Wapisiw Lookout, as well as VP Extraction. While living in Fort McMurray, he was also able to serve on the Northern Lights Health Foundation, the Vista Ridge Association Board, and the Suncor Foundation Board. Mark is proud to have the opportunity to serve on the Wood Buffalo Community Foundation Board.


PETER FORTNA, board member

Peter Fortna is a Principal Consultant at Willow Springs Strategic Solutions.  In this position he has helped a number of Indigenous organizations develop direction in the fields of strategic planning, regulatory engagement, communications, and heritage resource management.   Through working with a diverse range of clients in north-eastern Alberta, Peter has had the opportunity to develop and refine a broad range of skills coordinating, managing and evaluating community-based projects, utilizing community based research methodologies to ensure clients obtain the information and resources they require to make informed decisions and develop effective programs. He has also taken this diverse skill set and has applied it to a number of not-for-profit initiatives and currently serves as vice president of the Wood Buffalo Environmental Association and on the Board of Directors for the Wood Buffalo Housing and Development Corporation.

Peter holds a BA in History with a minor in Museum and Heritage Studies from the University of Calgary, an MA in History from Memorial University of Newfoundland, and has completed the coursework towards a PhD in History and Classics from the University of Alberta.  For a complete list of publications and community service please visit www.willowspringsss.com.


Dr. Tom Lawley, board member

Chief Medical Office, Syncrude Canada Ltd.

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Glen Finnson, board member

Glen is a 30-year resident of Fort McMurray and vice president of Safety, Security, Health and Environment at Syncrude Canada Ltd. He has volunteered as a coach to hockey, baseball and volleyball teams, as well as to cross-country skiers. He served on the Boards of the Knights Rugby Football and Manta swimming clubs, and is an active member of his Anglican church. Glen and his wife Kathy have two grown children.