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calla barnett

Board of Directors, President

Ottawa, Ontario

Back in 2005, a young Calla (She/Her) joined six other LGBTQ2+ youth who had come together to create Jer’s Vision: Canada’s Youth Diversity Initiative shortly after it became an official non-profit. As the organization grew, it became CCGSD, and her commitment to CCGSD and its mission has only strengthened. Her departure to Cameroon in 2007 allowed her to gain incredible experiences and knowledge that she, in October 2016, agreed to again share with CCGSD as it’s new President. She has seen CCGSD through some very difficult times and significant growing pains as she helped to take it from the small charity that it had been to a leading organization for education and advocacy around 2SLGBTQIA+ rights in Canada. Her work continues. With the departure of Jeremy Dias in 2019, the organization has experienced a period of adjustment and adaptation, and this against a backdrop of the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Calla’s persistence, ability, and optimism, alongside the highly skilled Board Members, the then Interim Executive Director, Cameron Aitken and very patient staff with incredible expertise, saw CCGSD through those times. She led the process to create new Vision, Mission, Values and Principles to take CCGSD into the future. And now, with a new, permanent Executive Director, Debbie Owusu-Akyeeah, Cameron set as Debbie’s right-hand person in the Director of Operations role, those incredible, expert staff who made the last year possible and a full Board filled with diverse experiences and identities, Calla and the CCGSD team are ready to step into that future stronger than ever.   



This year, the Centre is looking for remote volunteers to help with outreach and promotion of our online programming.  If you are interested in volunteering, gaining valuable and marketable skills in such areas as event coordination, fundraising, public speaking, database management, networking, and social media.

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