Shelagh Turner, Executive Director
Shelagh has held leadership roles in the non-profit sector for over 25 years. She is passionate about organizations and organizational behavior, particularly the interconnections of people and place and the influence of systems. Shelagh’s approach to challenges is typically described as collaborative, practical, strategic and forward thinking.
Shelagh earned her Masters degree in Industrial Relations and Economics from the London School of Economics and an undergraduate degree from Queen’s University in urban and human geography. She spent several years traveling and working around the world on a shoestring learning patience and gaining perspective.
Shelagh has held a variety of positions in Ontario and British Columbia focusing on system advocacy, community development and research, and enhancing organizational and individual capacity and strength. She has held the position of Executive Director of CMHA Kelowna for the past 10 years and is passionate about the organization and cause. CMHA is a multi-sector organization that has a broad mandate to increase awareness and understanding about mental well-being as well as a focus on providing quality programs and services to people who experience mental illness, addictions and the impact of long term poverty and marginalization.
Shelagh’s focus as an organizational leader has been on articulating our vision, mission and values; creating and supporting a strong and effective Board and staff team; excellence in financial management and accountability in service delivery. She is keenly interested in the notion of corporate social responsibility and the two-way relationship between the for-profit and social profit sectors.
Shelagh has had a significant role in shaping policy and changing practice for people who are marginalized in British Columbia. She was elected to the Board of Directors of BC Non Profit Housing Association from 2009-2015. Shelagh also served as Chair from 2013-2015 during a time of significant system and sector transformation.
Shelagh has had the great privilege to be selected to be a part of a Rooftops Canada delegation of leaders in the housing sector in Canada to visit individuals and projects in Nairobi, Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa in 2014. This trip solidified her resolve that access to affordable, decent housing is not only a fundamental component of well-being no matter where you live, it is a key driver of healthy and economically sustainable individuals, families, communities and countries.
Shelagh lives happily in Kelowna with her husband because their car broke-down almost 25 years ago while they were moving “out west”. That turned out to be one of the most prophetic flukes of their lives and serves as a constant reminder to stay open to possibilities. Shelagh and her husband have two wonderful daughters in their 20’s who are developing into great citizens studying and working in Kingston and Halifax. Shelagh loves to spend time with family, find new landscapes, is passionate about our community, and doing any activity that gets her outside.