Our People

Paul Latour

Founder & CEO
Bio

Paul Latour

Paul is a motivational speaker and the creator of HeroWork, a program that inspires people, communities, and companies to come together and complete modern-day versions of old fashioned barn-raisings.

Paul has produced and directed two one-hour TV broadcast specials on HeroWork projects. He has given keynotes and seminars on community building, leadership, and storytelling for such organizations as Alberta Culture, the Project Management Institute, the BC Ombudsman, Rotary, and Administrators of Volunteer Resources of BC, plus others.

He has also been featured on Global National News, on the front page of the Times Colonist, and the Victoria News, as well as featured in the Globe & Mail.

Trevor Botkin

Project Lead/Trade Manager
Bio

Trevor Botkin

Trevor is no stranger to volunteerism and giving back to the community. With a long history of supporting various charitable organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, HeroWork and others, it made perfect sense for him to accept an invitation to take a full-time seat with the HeroWork Society. 

In addition to an energetic and contagiously enthusiastic personality, Trevor brings with him more than 20 years of construction experience both as a Red Seal Carpenter and Superintendent.  

“My dream was always to find a job that leveraged my leadership experience and trade skills to make a difference in the community, a job where my energy and enthusiasm would be an asset. To that end, HeroWork and myself are a perfect match!” 

Liz Soutar

Volunteer and Event Manager
Bio

Liz Soutar

Liz has an extensive background in team leadership, mentoring, sales and technology. As a young girl her aspiration were to be “someone like Mother Teresa,” she was driven to help others and was always involved in as much community investment initiatives as she could squeeze into her busy schedule. She graduated from Carleton University with a degree in Film Studies with a heavy concentration in Mass Communications, World Religions and Philosophy.

During her career she was also a passionate volunteer, volunteering for all sorts of organizations. One experience that was uniquely impactful was when she was building the foundation for someones new life literally by building the floor boards for a new home. In 2015 when she moved across the country from Toronto, ON to Victoria, BC she knew her goal was to be involved in something similar. In 2016 she was introduced to HeroWork and volunteered on the Rainbow Kitchen Project as a Liaison Team Lead, transforming the Food Kitchen and making a profound impact on the community and on her. She was hooked and volunteered on every project until she got pregnant with her miracle son. In 2020 after her maternity leave the opportunity to work at HeroWork came up and her dream of a career in Community Investments came true when she was hired as HeroWork’s Volunteer and Event Manager.

“I am incredibly grateful that my path has lead me to this amazing opportunity. I’m inspired by my team and the community coming together to “raise the barn” for worthy charities all over the greater Victoria region …and beyond. I’m looking forward to all the wonderful relationships and heartwarming experiences that HeroWork will continue to provide me in the years to come.”

Rob Petitpas

Project Manager
Bio

Rob Petitpas

Rob has over 25 years of leadership experience as a senior naval officer and as a construction project manager.  Young Rob graduated from RMC with a bachelor’s degree and a licence to learn.  He spent the next two decades honing the craft of marine engineering and developing his skills as a technical manager.  Needing a new challenge he switched professions and entered the commercial construction industry.  Rob enjoyed the new work but not the profit motive, so he started looking for a sector that better aligned with his values.  Luckily for Rob he found HeroWork.

Rob has an MBA from RRU and a Master’s Certificate In Project Management from UVic. Rob and his wife Cara were born and raised in Nova Scotia but they now call Victoria home.  Rob’s passion is music and he loves to cook and travel.

Linda Morrison

Operations Manager
Bio

Linda Morrison

Linda has an extensive background in human resource management with the public sector in AB and BC public sector.  She is most happy solving problems and managing change and is eager to assist HeroWork in developing and designing processes to streamline work flow and program areas.  More important, however, Linda is thrilled to be able to give back to charities in the Greater Victoria area.

Linda holds a Master of Arts in Conflict Analysis and Management from Royal Roads University, an Event Management Extension Certificate from Mount Royal University and a Certificate in Human Resources Management from Camosun College.

Linda was born and raised in Victoria and spent 14 years in Grande Prairie, Alberta.  She is happy to be home where she can spend more time with her nieces and nephews.

Marlena Salvador

Philanthropy & Communications Manager
Bio

Marlena Salvador

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Board of Directors

Greg Baynton

Board Chair
Bio

Greg Baynton

Greg spent his working life in the construction industry, most of it as a contractor with operations in numerous locations, and always headquartered in Victoria. He was the recipient of personal awards for his leadership anhis firm was the recipient of project awards for its innovation and achievements.  

Greg was always very active in industry associations that promoted best practices and excellence. He was often an industry liaison to government and construction related authorities on a variety of topics that included design, building science, standards and practices. When he decided to leave the for profit sector in 2004 his company operated in three locations in BC.  

In 2006 Greg became CEO of the Vancouver Island Construction Association. One of Greg’s key achievements during his tenure with the Construction Association was the amalgamation of four island construction associations. The amalgamation proofed to be timely and critical to solidifying the industry’s voice as a key stakeholder in the island’s economy, and as the industry transitioned from the 2008 recession to a sustained period of unprecedented growth on and off the island.  

In 2015 VICA and HeroWork initiated a collaborative dialogue and in 2016 the VICA U40 sponsored the Camp Pringle Radical Renovation Project. The partnership cultivated between VICA and HeroWork continues to this day.  

Greg retired as CEO of VICA in early 2017 and was recruited to the HeroWork board that yearGreg brings comprehensive construction and board expertise to the HeroWork Board.  

Greg also sits joined the Victoria Civic Heritage Trust Board of Directors in 2017.  

Bill Gyles

Vice Chair
Bio

Bill Gyles

Bill started his career in Winnipeg as a construction cost consultant and attained his designation as a Professional Quantity Surveyor in 1975. Moving to Victoria in 1979 he worked for several General Contractors, then co-founded Kinetic Construction in 1984. He managed this construction company and grew Kinetic from a two-person operation to a mid-sized general contracting and construction management firm with 3 branch offices and 140 employees. Bill is a LEED Accredited Professional, and has participated on many green building projects throughout BC and Alberta.

Bill served on numerous construction industry boards, both local and national, over the past 30 years. He chaired both the British Columbia Construction and the Vancouver Island Construction Associations, and served on several committees. In 2013, Bill was recipient of the Canadian Construction Association Person of the Year Award.

Bill served 5 years on the Board of Governors for Camosun College as well as several other local and provincial advisory boards. Upon his retirement in 2017 Bill was honored to have the annual William Gyles Scholarship in Civil Engineering Technology donated to Camosun College by Kinetic Construction. Bill currently teaches a course at the College of the Desert in Palm Springs in the Learning in Retirement Program.

Bill is excited to help HeroWork thrive and grow. His experience participating on various Boards, as well as his leadership roles in the construction industry will help HeroWork to achieve its mission.

Sharlene Smith

Secretary
Bio

Sharlene Smith

Sharlene Smith has extensive governance experience; having held leadership positions with national, provincial and local organizations.

In addition to joining the board of HeroWork -- an organization she’s excited to be a part of -- she has served on the boards of ten public and civil society organizations, and been the lead director on five of them. Her governance experience is in healthcare, transportation, parks and recreation, tourism, victim services and policing, as well as her own professional association – the Canadian Public Relations Society, where she is currently the chair of their national governance committee.

Sharlene is a graduate of Leadership Victoria, and actively participates in professional development on governance as part of her membership in the Institute of Corporate Directors.

Professionally, she is a communication management consultant, and a member of the Canadian Public Relations Society’s College of Fellows.

Allan Lingwood

Director
Bio

Allan Lingwood, MBA, CEC

Founder of YellowBrick Services, since 2004 has gained experience in management consulting and since 2013 experience in executive coaching. His work combines these two disciplines, addressing the challenges and opportunities faced by organizations, as well as the development needs of key personnel.

In guiding organizations and individuals, Allan continues to return to the same patterns and strategies that consistently drive people, systems, and culture toward maximum sustainable performance, as well as industry leadership. These patterns and strategies you will find embedded in his proprietary approach to continuous improvement: Reflection, Action, and Stewardship.

YellowBrick offers these proven solutions, as well as research in emerging approaches, to entrepreneurs and professionals ambitious for reaching higher levels of performance in themselves and their companies.

Bruce Johnson

Director
Bio

Bruce Johnson

Bruce Johnson, P.Eng., Struct.Eng.

With over 39 years as a Structural Engineer, Bruce brings a wealth of leadership and experience from the building construction industry. His career at RJC Engineers included 22 years managing their Victoria office, followed by 4 years leading the 600-person Canada-wide firm as President/ Managing Director. He was elected to RJC’s Board for 14 years, including Chairman for 6 years.

His volunteer experience includes 6 years as a member of the Architectural Conservation Committee and Board of Directors with the Victoria Civic Heritage Trust, including 3 years as President.

“I first learned of HeroWorks through others in RJC’s Victoria office, and was instantly drawn to the concept. I have been so blessed in my life and career, and I want to give back in ways that change lives; HeroWorks can do that. Having volunteered on a few projects, I am honoured to be a member of the HeroWorks Board and look forward to helping lead the organization.”

Annette Wall

Board Past Chair
Bio

Annette Wall

Annette has a lengthy career in executive leadership. She works with a focus on building strong teams, establishing collaborative leadership strategies and fostering strategic relationships.  

Annette currently holds a position of Associate Faculty in the School of Leadership Studies at Royal Roads University.  She holds a masters degree in leadership and professional designations in the human resources field.   

I value the collaborative and expert contributions of our Board of Directors and the HeroWork staff and the dedication of our volunteers, sponsors and charity partners to improving the lives of all people in our communities.    

Deborah Hunt

Treasurer
Bio

Deborah Hunt

Deborah  Hunt is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CA) with over 35 years experience in both the private and public sectors. She has worked for the BC Office of the Auditor General, held senior management positions in the BC Ministry of Health and  NS Department of Health, was the Director of Finance for Royal Roads University, and is a partner in Compass Solutions Inc., a management consulting business.  
 
Deborah first became involved with HeroWork when she was on the Board and the Treasurer of the Victoria Rainbow Kitchen Society, a charity that prepares and serves a free hot noon meal to 125 people a day, 5 days a week year round.  As the Board's representative, she worked closely with Paul Latour during the planning stages leading up to the Rainbow Kitchen's 4 week Radical Renovation in the fall of 2016 of the entire inside space plus landscaping of the entire outside space. "The Radical Renovation not only substantially improved the physical infrastructure , it had a huge transformative impact on our guests and volunteers by showing them that the community really cares about them." 
 
Deborah joined the HeroWork Board as Treasurer in February 2017.   "I was so impressed not only with WHAT HeroWork did for the Rainbow Kitchen, but with HOW it did it by engaging and inspiring an amazing community of HeroWork volunteers and the IMAPCT it had on our entire organization and the people we serve.  I wanted to be part of the team that continues to revitalize and transform charities throughout the wider community". 

Lisa Nye

Director
Bio

Lisa Nye

Lisa Nye is a consultant and business owner, who grew up and resides in Victoria, with a diverse range of experience including policy, negotiations, collaboration, planning and Indigenous engagement. Through her consultancy and 28 years with the BC Government, she has built and sustained extensive personal and business networks and contributed to community development. 

Charity infrastructure is critical to the availability of diverse services which support the health and well-being of our communities.  I am proud to contribute to threvitalization of charitable organizations so that we can sustain and grow support services within communities.  

Marnie Mitchell

Director
Bio

Marnie Mitchell

Marnie is a strategically-oriented and analytical professional with a successful record of results in association, provincial government and consulting industries.  Throughout her career as CEO of the BC Pharmacy Association and, as an Executive Director within the BC government, she has identified opportunities for new collaborative working arrangements and successfully pursued the development of several inter-industry and inter-provincial collaborations.  As a consultant, she has assisted clients in creating collaborative working relationships with government. 

Marnie has volunteer sector experience as a Chair and Board member of the Mid-Main Community Health Clinic in Vancouver; as Chair and Board member of the Canadian Foundation for Pharmacy; and as a ski instructor for disabled persons with Vancouver Adaptive Snow Sports.

She holds a BA and MA and incomplete PhD (all but dissertation). Two adult children, currently producing a small crop of grandchildren, and a large lively poodle round out the family scene. 

Jason Demmy

Director
Bio

Jason Demmy

Jason Demmy brings years of business experience owning, managing and scaling multiple rental equipment businesses from single store locations to multinational chains.

A few of the highlights of his career include:

  • IT work integrating over 30 separate newly acquired equipment companies across North America onto a common system.
  • Acquiring and  growing a local equipment business to multiple locations across B.C. and Alberta.
  • Leading the entry of a multinational into Canada growing operations to 22 locations across Western Canada and integrating operational systems for Canada.
  • Purchasing, selling, renovating and developing multiple different types of real estate.

His experience developing businesses provides insight to HeroWork on integrating accounting, IT, and operational systems, increasing efficiencies, as well as helping plan with replicating operations in new markets.

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"I’m really grateful to be a part of the HeroWork team by contributing on the Board as well as assisting with Radical Renovations. HeroWork is a unique platform that gives me an opportunity to help assist a wide variety of worthwhile charities that in turn help many people with different needs. The positive atmosphere created by everyone - staff, board members, volunteers, and partner charities - is really uplifting and makes this group such a genuine pleasure to work with."