meet our Leadership

Board of Directors, Executive Members

Diane Thornton

President

A longtime member of the Langley Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, Diane has held various executive positions and currently serves as Past President. She also volunteers at her Auxiliary’s popular Penny Pincher Thrift Store. Born in Vancouver, Diane grew up in Powell River and left after high school to attend UBC. After graduation, she worked as a Customs Broker, a career that spanned over 40 years. Diane is married to Larry Gillott. They have no children but are grandparents to six grandchildren who all live in Australia (“I skipped the middle step,” she notes). Diane and Larry enjoy travellng the world, taking cruises and venturing out in their fifth-wheel RV. They also enjoy square dancing, gardening and playing with their cute Golden Doodle puppy. Diane comes from a family of Auxiliary volunteers. Her mother was a member of the Powell River Health-Care Auxiliary and her two sisters are current members. Volunteering keeps her active and engaged, and she sees her BCAHA executive role as an opportunity to further contribute and connect with others.

Margaret Anderson

Past President

Marge has been a member of Cowichan’s Lake Healthcare Auxiliary since 2006. She was President for five years and served as Auxiliary Treasurer. She also chaired the District Council of Hospital Auxiliaries for two years. Marge’s community volunteering includes Little League Baseball, school PACs, church youth group leadership, Kaatza museum, Kaatza Health Unit Healthy Beginnings Program and BC 4-H. She joined BC 4-H as a five-year-old “pre-clubber” and later became a 4-H Junior Leader and Club Leader. She also served on the BC 4-H Foundation and the BC Provincial 4-H Council, and as a BC 4-H Conflict Resolution Manager for nine years. Marge’s working career has spanned many areas including bookkeeping, travel consultant, retail sales, hotel reception, office manager, and business partner with her husband, Paul. They have three married sons and daughters-in-law, and seven wonderful grandchildren of whom they are very proud. Marge and Paul enjoy walking, biking, swimming, boating, entertaining their many friends, and travelling. Marge’s enthusiasm and love of people bring a positive energy to her service on the BCAHA executive.

Carole Murray

Vice President, Lower Mainland Area Director

Carole was born and raised in Vancouver before moving to North Vancouver. After teaching for 28 years, she retired to her beloved, longtime family home in Halfmoon Bay, B.C. Carole joined her local Auxiliary in 2007 so that she could work with seniors at the Totem Lodge Extended Care facility. Little did she know that this initial step would lead to roles as Publicity Officer, Vice-Chair and Chair of the Halfmoon Bay Branch, and then various executive positions, including that of President, of the Sunshine Coast Healthcare Auxiliary. In addition to her Auxiliary service, she earned Life Membership in the Canadian Power & Sail Squadron and assumed local, provincial and then national chairmanship of Youth Programmes on behalf of the CPS. Carole has a son and daughter, and five lovely grandchildren that keep her busy. She enjoys traveling and has driven across many provinces, with her dog as companion, for family weddings and get-togethers. As the BCAHA Vice President she is looking forward to meeting all of the Auxiliaries across the Province.

Allana Ferro

Director of Finance

Allana joined the Trail Hospital Auxiliary 20 years ago as Secretary and to help with public relations, and she is currently in her fourth year as President. Her family and community involvement are a major part of who she is. With 48 years of married life, two daughters with spouses, and five grandchildren, life is never dull. Allana’s professional career includes employment as an LPN to help support her husband through university, working as a travel consultant, and spending 28 years as a Municipal Senior Administrator. Retirement allowed Allana to devote more time to her volunteering, which has included various positions in the Trail Skating Club and with the BC/Yukon section of Skate Canada. At present, she continues as Treasurer of the Kootenay Region and as a Level 2 Data Specialist. The Catholic Women’s League, Sisters of Colombo, and the Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital & Health Foundation, of which she is Past President, are also cherished parts of her life as a volunteer. Allana’s energy, knowledge, and love of people and healthcare make her an asset to the BCAHA Board.

Arline Allison

Secretary

Arline has been a member of the Mission Health Care Auxiliary Society since 1995 and found the experience of serving as 2nd Vice-President, 1st Vice-President, President, and Past President of her home Auxiliary to be a rewarding and enlightening learning experience. Currently, she is a member of the Ad Hoc Committee that recently updated Mission’s Constitution and Bylaws, and is updating their Policies and Procedures. Arline was Convenor of the Auxiliary’s gift shop for five years, and is currently Co-Convenor; previously, she assisted the gift shop’s treasurer with some accounting duties. She is also an active volunteer with her church, where she provides readings and helps in the church nursery. Arline and her husband have two children, one daughter-in-law, five grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. When not busy with volunteer service, Arline enjoys quilting, knitting, camping with family, playing guitar, fishing, hunting, and traveling—though “not necessarily in that order,” as she is quick to point out.

Cheryl Fry

Director of Communications

Cheryl lives in Revelstoke and has been a member of the Revelstoke Hospital Auxiliary Society since 2008. Starting as Secretary, she is now the Past President. She created the current website and Facebook page for the Revelstoke Auxiliary and she also serves on the Membership, Sunshine, and Wish List committees. For 16 years, Cheryl has volunteered with the Canadian Cancer Society, coordinating many fundraising initiatives such as the Relay For Life, the Daffodil Campaign and Slopes for Hope. Cheryl is a people person and is always eager to learn new skills. She enjoys a variety of activities including interior decorating, scrapbooking and spending time with her husband, two children and four grandchildren. As BCAHA Secretary, Cheryl brings valuable experience to the Board and she looks forward to sharing her skills to help maintain the best healthcare possible for all our communities.

Area Directors

Past President ~ Marge Anderson

Marge Anderson

Vancouver Island Area, Director

Marge has spent most of her adult life volunteering in the service of others.During her childhood and teen years Marge was a 4-H member and Junior leader of her 4-H Club.  When their 3 sons were old enough to join the 4-H Program, Marge and her husband Paul took on leadership roles and worked closely with the members and leaders of other 4-H clubs Province wide.  Marge served for several years on the BC Provincial 4-H Council and nine years as a Conflict Resolution Manager. Little League Baseball, Church Youth Groups, School PACs and the  Kaatza Healthy Beginnings Program were all beneficiaries of Marge’s volunteer efforts.

 In 2006 Marge joined the Lake Healthcare Auxiliary and has held several positions including Treasurer and President. She has been on the Executive and Board of BCAHA in the positions of Vice-President, President and currently the BCAHA Past President and Vancouver Island Area Director.

 In addition to volunteering, Marge and her husband Paul lead very busy lives with their family of 3 sons and daughter-in-laws, 7 Grandchildren, 3  Grand-daughter-in-laws and 1 Great-Grand-daughter (who just happens to be the light of their lives!

 Marge looks forward to her term as Vancouver Island Area Director and hopes to visit each of the Auxiliaries on the Island during the coming year.

Yvonne Chard

Lower Mainland Area Director

Yvonne moved from Australia after she married a Canadian, Yvonne and Sandy have three children and 6 young grandchildren who are in Ontario and California.

Yvonne taught adults ESL and was a LINC/ELSA program manager for many years in Delta school district, Yvonne had her retirement and her start as president of the Delta Hospital Auxiliary happened in the same week.  Yvonne first joined the Auxiliary in 2000 in the Ladner Thrift shop, mainly working with electrical and watch testing in the back, she has had a variety of board roles.

Yvonne is still active on various Boards in her Community, for many years she was a leader on the BC Adult Education Association board.  Yvonne loves meeting people, travelling, computers, and taking photographs.  Yvonne looks forward to working with other Auxiliaries as a wonderful opportunity for sharing and growth.

Wendy Schwab

Kootenay Boundary Area, Director

Wendy Schwab retired from her role as Manager of the Nelson Law Courts in 2012 after 35 years of service in Court Services under B.C.’s Ministry of the Attorney General. Wendy became a member of Castlegar & District Hospital Auxiliary Society since 2013, where she held the title of Secretary from 2014 to 2018 and the title of President from 2018 to 2020. She also represented the Kootenay Boundary as Area Director from 2015 to 2017. Prior to her retirement, she also volunteered as a member of Ducks Unlimited, Castlegar Branch, from 2005 to 2009. Wendy’s hobbies include pottery, hiking, cycling, and gardening.

Myra Abstreiter

East Kootenay Area, Director

Myra joined the Invermere Health Care Auxiliary Society in 2015 and became active in its Thrift Store. She served as Team Leader of a group of 10 – 12 Thrift Store volunteers, assisting them and keeping them up-to-date with Auxiliary events, initiatives and changes. She also helped raise the profile of her Auxiliary by providing regular news and activity updates for Invermere’s community newspaper. In accepting the role of East Kootenay Area Director, Myra welcomes the opportunity to represent her region and to collaborate with the other members of the BCAHA Board. When not volunteering, she enjoys gardening, and hiking and cycling the trails around Invermere Valley. She likes to travel to warm climates in the winter months and to explore Canada and the U.S. on her motorcycle during the summer season. An avid motorcyclist, she has served on the Women Riders Council (of Canada) where she actively helped promote and celebrate women motorcycle riders.

Charlotte Aperloo

Northwest Area, Director

Charlotte is a retired school bus driver of 30 years, a Janitorial Contractor, an Elder of the Kwantlen First Nation from Fort Langley. Charlotte has 4 children, if she counted all the steps, lol 17 grandchildren 9 great grandchildren.

Charlotte has been married to the same fine guy for coming up 52 years, also a member of BVD Hospital Auxiliary in Smithers B.C for 50 years. Charlotte enjoys making beaded earrings in her spare time, as well as she loves to spend time with the ladies at the Thrift Shop. Charlotte looks forward to serving as the Northwest Area Director for the next term.

Valerie Wright

Okanagan Mainline Area, Director

Valerie, has been a member of the Provincial Board in the position of Director of Finance. Prior to her move to Summerland in summer of 2019 Valerie has been a member of the Grand Forks Auxiliary since 2013, holding office of Vice President and President. Prior to her becoming involved with the Hospital Auxiliary Valerie served as President in the following: The little People’s Centre, Grand Forks Figure Skating Club, Grand Forks Minor Hockey Association, Grand Forks Border Bruins Jr B Hockey club, served as a director for both the West Kootenay Hockey Association and Kootenay International Junior Hockey League. Valerie has been married for 37 years, they have two girls, and two grandchildren. Valerie loves to spend her free time with her family. Valerie is looking forward to meeting all of her Auxiliaries in the Okanagan Mainline Area soon.

Anne Kern

Fraser Valley Area, Director

Anne was born in New West Minster, raised in Coquitlam, lived in Langley and now resides in Abbotsford. Married with 3 children and 7 grandchildren, Anne graduated from Royal Columbian School of Nursing in 1973 and retired in 2017.
Anne has volunteered in the following positions: First as a Ranger in Guiding, working with younger girls, President and Founder of the Medical Education group in High school, a student nurse she was class rep then Student President, she helped in the schools of her children, teaching special sessions, Girl Guides for 12 years as a unit leader, district commissioner and area international. Anne was also a 4-H judge where she judged kids speeches, she is a member of the Emergency Support Services (ESS) in Langley for 19 years now, Anne was the President of the RCH Nurses Almunac for 10 years and she is now Chair of the Archive Committee of the Almunac/ Anne is an active volunteer at the Penny Pincher in Langley for a few years wearing a few hats. I am honored to be asked to be the Fraser Valley area Director for the BCAHA, I will try to do my best for the Area with all of your help.

Sharon Egglestone

NorthEast Area, Director

Sharon is a retired teacher who wasn’t ready to retire, but followed her golfing husband to Arizona to become a Canadian Snowbird. While at home in Canada for six months of the year she discovered the Prince George Hospital Auxiliary. Sharon found that she loved retail and worked as a volunteer and convenor for the gift shop, she moved onto the Board of Directors and after being secretary and Vice-President moved into the president’s chair for a couple of years. Sharon became Area director for the NE for two years and then took a medical leave due to a nasty topsy-turvy on Prince George ice! After a short time away, she’s back to help the 2020 BCAHA board.