Jump to Main Content

Board of Directors

Everyone on the Meridian Board of Directors are Members themselves. Their commitment lies in benefiting fellow Members, the communities we serve and the credit union as a whole.

Board of Directors Duties

Meridian’s Board of Directors works closely with Senior Management to set and monitor Meridian’s performance and direction.  They are responsible for setting policies and governing activities according to Meridian’s by-laws and the Credit Unions and Caisses Populaires Act.

Specific Duties include:
  • Establishing strategic direction and performance expectations
  • Hiring, delegating authority to and assessing the performance of the President & Chief Executive Officer
  • Monitoring Meridian's performance and approving the financial plan
  • Communicating with Members and Stakeholders, and providing leadership by supporting and promoting Meridian
Monitoring and ensuring appropriate and effective Governance of Meridian, including development of directors

Why become a Board Member?

When you become a Member on the Board of the Directors, you are helping to make a difference in your community and the credit union. It not only gives you the opportunity to utilize your skills but allows you to enhance and broaden your abilities as well. It’s a wonderful way to grow as a person, help the community and make Meridian a stronger, more effective credit union for all of its Members.

Ken Bolton

Mortgage Icon
Ken has been a credit union member since 1983. He is a CA/CPA and holds a Bachelor of Mathematics from the University of Waterloo. He retired in 2014 after 31 years with CUMIS Insurance Company, the provider of insurance products and solutions to credit unions and their members across Canada. While at CUMIS, Ken held numerous positions including Manager - Internal Audit, Comptroller, Chief Financial Officer, Director - Financial Planning and Analysis and Chair of the CUMIS Pension Committee. Prior to joining the Meridian Credit Union Board in April 2015, Ken served for over 10 years on two other Ontario credit union boards. Ken currently chairs the MCU Audit Committee, serves on the Risk Committee, and previously served on the Nominating & Governance Committees. In 2016 Ken obtained the Chartered Director (C.Dir.) designation from the Directors College.

Jeff Chesebrough

Mortgage Icon
Known for his ability to build relationships and foster collaboration amongst stakeholders, Jeff has led the evolution of Innovate Niagara as CEO. His previous work experience includes VP Operations/Partner at Innivity Marketing Group which was named as one of the HOT 50 Emerging Growth Companies in Canada by PROFIT magazine during his time there. After years of running a business outside the region, Jeff made a conscious decision to return to his roots and has become entrenched in the Niagara community. Jeff currently serves on the Niagara Economic Development Advisory Committee, is a Director on the Meridian Credit Union Board of Directors and recently finished serving 4 years on the CAA Niagara Board of Directors. Winner of several business achievement and volunteer recognition awards, Jeff is particularly proud of being named as a Senator with the Jaycee International organization, the highest honour bestowed by JCI, and his Brock University Alumni of Distinction Award. In 2016, he obtained his Chartered Director (C.Dir.) designation.

Larry Doran

Mortgage Icon
Larry is President & CEO of lmperium Energy Inc. From 2006 to 2011, he was President & CEO of the Peterborough Utilities Group. Prior to that, Larry spent over 30 years with Ontario Hydro and Ontario Power Generation in a number of leadership positions. He has over 20 years of Board experience in a combination of for-profit and not-for-profit organizations as well as having achieved his ICD designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors. Larry has been a credit union member for over 40 years.

Karen Farbridge - Chair

Mortgage Icon
Karen is President of Karen Farbridge & Associates Ltd. which she established in 2015 to provide integrated solutions for building healthy and prosperous cities. Prior to becoming an entrepreneur, Karen served for 17 years in municipal politics including 11 years as mayor of Guelph. She has served on numerous boards including: QUEST, Guelph Police Services Board, Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health Board, Guelph Municipal Holding Inc., Guelph Hydro Inc, Guelph Hydro Electric Systems Inc, Ecotricity Inc, and Guelph Junction Railway Inc. Karen has a MSc and PhD from the University of Guelph and has a Chartered Director designation from the Directors College, a joint venture of McMaster University and the Conference Board of Canada. She is an active community volunteer including many years of involvement in local United Way campaigns. Karen was elected to the Board in 2015.

Gail Harding

Mortgage Icon
Gail Harding, Q.C., is the former Senior Vice President, Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary at Canadian Western Bank Financial Group where she was responsible for the legal, governance, regulatory compliance and ethics functions.  Gail also sat on the board of CWB’s subsidiaries which offered equipment financing, wealth management, insurance and trust services.
Gail is an active volunteer in the community and in her profession having served on the boards of numerous not-for-profit entities and crown corporations.  In recognition of her accomplishments Gail has received several awards including the Queen’s Counsel designation. She currently serves on the board of the Alberta Securities Commission. Gail received both her Bachelor of Education (Honours) and Bachelor of Law from the University of Alberta and holds the ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors.

Carol Hunter

Mortgage Icon
Carol is retired from The Co-operators Group as Executive Vice President, Member Relations and Corporate Affairs, where she was responsible for the governance and democratic functioning of the company, member business, legal and public affairs, human resources and corporate sustainability. Previously, she was the Executive Director of the Canadian Co-operative Association, a national association focused on promoting, uniting, and developing co-operatives in Canada and internationally. Carol has sat on a number of boards in the co-operative, academic, and public sectors and is currently a director of Gore Mutual Insurance and Vice-Chair of Innovation Guelph.  She holds a Chartered Director designation from the Director's College, and is the 2016 recipient of the Gil Bennett Gold Standard Award, granted to the top graduating student of the Director’s College.  Carol holds an undergraduate degree from Queen's University in Philosophy and Sociology, and a Master of Information and Library Science from the University of Western Ontario. 

Andrew Lo

Mortgage Icon
Andrew is a management consultant for digital leadership. He has deep understanding of technology, user experience design and digital marketing with the ability to lead and scale high growth organizations. He possesses a unique instinct to inspire digital teams to innovate, collaborate and create products focused on customers. 

Andrew is the former President & CEO for Kanetix Ltd where he led digital innovation and growth for Canada’s largest digital customer acquisition platform for insurance and financial services. Kanetix was acquired by Ontario Teacher’s Pension Plan.

Prior to joining Kanetix in 2011, Andrew was the Executive Vice President of Technology at Filogix leading the team that built the mortgage origination platform used by most brokers and lenders in Canada.
Andrew volunteers as a Business Strategy Advisor for Ryerson University’s DMZ helping to develop digital entrepreneurs and startup companies at the world’s #1 university-based technology incubator.

Peter Patchet

Mortgage Icon
Peter Patchet was the Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President, Human Resources of Andrew Peller Limited for fifteen years before retiring in 2015. Andrew Peller Limited is a publically traded company that is a leading producer and marketer of quality wines and spirits sold primarily in Canada. He was responsible for the long term effectiveness of all financial, human resource, and information technology functions within the Company.  Prior to joining Andrew Peller he worked for Vincor International Inc. and John Labatt Limited.  Peter has served on the boards of CAA Niagara as chair of the Executive Compensation and Executive Search Committees, the Niagara Health System Foundation as chair of the Audit Committee, Lookout Point Golf Club serving as President and chair of the Audit Committee, and the Victorian Order of Nurses. Peter is a CPA and graduated with an Honours BA in business administration from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario.

Tamara Paton – Vice Chair

Mortgage Icon
Tamara is an independent strategy consultant advising senior executives and boards in digital media, retail and financial services. She holds a Bachelor of Mathematics from the University of Waterloo and an MBA from the Wharton School. Tamara also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst, Chartered Director, and Certified Executive Coach designations. During her personal time, she is an active volunteer and enjoys living in Niagara with her husband and young children. Tamara was elected to the board in 2013.

Colleen Sidford

Mortgage Icon
Colleen retired from Ontario Power Generation Inc. (OPG) as VP Chief Investments Officer, where she was responsible for managing a large portfolio of investments assets comprised of OPG’s Pension Fund and Nuclear Funds. Prior to assuming this position in mid-2011, Colleen held the position of VP Treasurer with responsibility for corporate financing, investment risk management, and the corporate insurance programs.  Before joining OPG, Colleen owned and operated a private financial consulting business based in Europe for several years. During her long career, she held senior management positions with major corporations and banking institutions. Colleen has extensive Board experience and currently serves as a Director on other Canadian and international boards. She is also a graduate of the Institute of Corporate Directors. Colleen was elected to the Meridian Credit Union Board in 2012.

Mike Valente

Mortgage Icon
Mike Valente is an Associate Professor at the Schulich School of Business, York University.  His broad area of expertise is on the relationship between business and society, also known as corporate social responsibility or business sustainability.  He publishes articles and cases on this topic, teaches courses at undergraduate and graduate levels, and consults a wide range of businesses through his website.  Mike and his partner make a relentless and daily effort to adopt a sustainable lifestyle through informed decisions.  Where they conduct their financial affairs is but one of the many decisions they make in such a way that aligns with this lifestyle.  He therefore feels incredibly privileged with the opportunity to extend his relationship with Meridian to that of a board member where he might gain the opportunity to humbly share his expertise to contribute to the excellence of an organization he truly believes in.

Bruce West

Mortgage Icon
Bruce retired from The Co-operators Group in 2018 after serving 11 years as Executive Vice-President Finance and Chief Financial Officer. As CFO, Bruce was responsible for all aspects of financial management, corporate development, investment strategy, strategic planning, enterprise risk management, actuarial and reinsurance, taxation and internal audit. Bruce was President, Co-operators Investment Limited Partnership and chaired the Management Capital Committee and Management Investment Committee. He has broad financial services industry experience in insurance, wealth management, banking, trust companies and brokerage operations.

Bruce holds an FCPA, FCA designation, is a Chartered Director (C.Dir.) and has a Bachelor of Mathematics from the University of Waterloo and an MBA with a concentration in Marketing from Wilfrid Laurier University.  He has extensive board and governance experience, including The CUMIS Group and Credential Financial Inc., and currently sits on the Aviso Wealth Inc. board.

Bruce has spent almost half of his career working for co-operative and mutual companies and is excited to now work for the members of Meridian Credit Union. Bruce and his wife Karen reside in Waterloo, Ontario.

Contact the Board

While the Board oversees Management, it does not participate in any of the Meridian day-to-day operations. If you have a Board-specific request or issue, please contact the Board of Directors at any time.  The Corporate Secretary will review all inquiries and will direct any to the appropriate person if a response is required.

To contact a Member of the Board:


Meridian Credit Union 
Attn: Name of Board Member 
c/o Corporate Secretary 
3280 Bloor Street West
Centre Tower, Suite 2700
Toronto, ON M8X 2X3​
Telephone: 1-866-592-2226 
Email: Board.ofDirectors@meridiancu.ca

To contact our Corporate Secretary:


Meridian Credit Union 
Attn: Sunny Sodhi, Corporate Secretary 
3280 Bloor Street West
Centre Tower, Suite 2700
Toronto, ON M8X 2X3
Telephone: 416-597-4444 ext. 2274 
Email: sunny.sodhi@meridiancu.ca​