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Leading roles

Introducing Gwen Lévesque

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By on October 1, 2021

Gwen LévesqueGwen Lévesque, chair of the Cathedral Hill Foundation since June 2020, is a chartered professional accountant who was a regional director with the Canada Revenue Agency (Northern Ontario region), Her work with CRA helped prepare her for her role with the Cathedral Hill Foundation as she had “responsibility for lot of property and dealt with a lot of property matters,” she told Crosstalk. And then there’s her many volunteer roles serving the church. “I am retired but I am the treasurer at St. Thomas the Apostle parish on Alta Vista, and I have quite a lot of experience on Diocese committees such as the Property and Finance Committee, the Budget Committee, and I am currently the chair of the Fair Share Review sub-committee And then I got talked into being chair of CHF by Bishop John [Chapman]. It’s a busy retirement,” she acknowledged.” 

What keeps her going? 

“A project of this nature, which provides positive income to both members – the Cathedral and the Diocese — is a gratifying thing to work on,” she said. “There are always issues that arise when you are doing anything of this type, but we have a good board in place, and we work through them.”

Thanking Barbara Gagné

Barbara GagnéBefore she retired last year, Barbara Gagné chaired the Cathedral Hill Foundation for almost 15 years. She negotiated the land leases for both phases of the development. Her hard work and dedication helped make this project a reality. 

Gagné negotiated the land leases for both phases of the development.

Elizabeth Taylor, the secretary of the foundation board, said, “What comes to my mind is her expertise in negotiations that came from her work with NavCan that she was then able apply to negotiations that she did on behalf of the foundation…. I know that Gagné worked very, very hard, and we certainly benefitted from her experience, particularly around legal issues and labour negotiations issues. She was able to stand her ground and negotiate fulsomely on our behalf.”

In his remarks at the final board meeting that Barbara chaired, the bishop expressed thanks and noted her “intelligence, leadership, tenacity, humour, strength and spirit of solidarity.”

Also at that meeting, Gagné said: “The vision to be good stewards of these lands and to strategize how we could contribute toward the long-term financial stability of the Cathedral and Diocese drew me to the project.  The sense of team and partnership with all the talented people who served on CHF, as well as our two developers, nourished me for my nearly 15 year association. It is never work when you do something you passionately believe in.”

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