2021 Recipients

2021 CPBI Regional Volunteer of the Year Award Recipients  

The CPBI’s extensive calendar of events and library of resources are possible thanks to its many dedicated volunteers located throughout the CPBI’s eight Regions across Canada.
On behalf of the CPBI Board of Directors, Regional Councils and National Office, we would like to congratulate and thank the following volunteers for their involvement and contribution to the Institute:  


 

Leanne O'Reilly

CPBI Atlantic Region 
Employee Benefit Specialist
Pippy Insurance & Financial

Leanne has a breadth of experience that spans 20 years in the industry. She holds a Life Insurance License (including accident and sickness) and CEBS designation. Offered in conjunction with Dalhousie University, CEBS is the premier certification in employee benefits and is the industry’s only designation in total compensation.

As an Employee Benefit Specialist with Pippy Insurance & Financial, Leanne is a dedicated and qualified local point-of-contact. She is responsible for the ongoing support of the firm’s employee benefit accounts. Through direct and regular contact, Leanne provides expert assistance to plan administrators and Human Resources staff.

As a member of industry associations, Leanne is well versed with, and has up-to-date information on, industry trends. That professional capability, together with a demonstrated understanding of the issues facing employers and employees, enables Leanne to make informed recommendations for our clients. Leanne is a regional council member with the Canadian Pension and Benefits Institute (CPBI) and is also Past President of the Better Business Bureau of Newfoundland & Labrador

Leanne has been a CPBI Member for 16 years (since 2005) and a Board member on the CPBI Atlantic Council since 2015. As one of our key council members in Newfoundland, Leanne has been instrumental in organizing and hosting all of our in person sessions in St. John's, Newfoundland. Leanne has been a key member on our Benefits Committee and has served as a moderator for conference and education sessions. In 2020, Leanne took on the role of CPBI Atlantic Conference Co-Chair. Little did she know when taking on that role, that her two years as Confernece Co-chair would mean reinventing our in person conference to meet the challenges of COVID. Leanne played a critical role in the development and creation of our 2020 and 2021 CPBI Atlantic Virtual Conferences. Leanne's patience, leadership and attention to details brought these conferences from idea to reality.

Leanne, your fellow council members and colleagues thank you for the contributions you have made to our organization.


Giorgio Follegati

CPBI Ontario Region
Senior Consultant
Benchmark Benefit Solutions


Prior to joining Benchmark Benefit Solutions in 2016, Giorgio worked as both a Technical Underwriter and Sales Representative at one of Canada’s largest Third-Party Benefit Administrators. In 2015, Giorgio was recognized as a “Top Young Gun” under 35, by Insurance Business Canada magazine. Giorgio sits on the Ontario Council of the Canadian Pension and Benefits Institute and is also an organizer of Disrupt HR Vaughan, an annual event bringing together HR professionals and business leaders to inspire innovation and advancements in the world of work. 

Giorgio has stepped up and brought a high level of enthusiasm and insight into different initiatives, especially all his work with the HRPA partnership program. 

Giorgio's contributions on running the Canadian Pension Certificate is outstanding and shall be recognized. He was noticed for his hard work and dedication. 


TBD

CPBI Manitoba Region 
TBD
TBB

BIO TBD



Dara Sewell-Zumstien

CPBI Saskatchewan Region
Manager, Member & Stakeholder relations
Public Employees Benefits Agency

Dara has had a very long career in the fincial industry, beginning in the banking industry and over time and a few career moves has come to find her passion in promoting Financial Wellness in the Pension Industry in Saskatchewan. She has been with the Public Employees Benefits Agency for over 10 years where she has put her industry knowledge and her passion for helping others to the benefit of the membership and teams that she has served. She now leads a team of professionals to do the same. She has proudly continued to further her education and is currently working towards completeing her degree at the University of Regina. She has been a member of the CPBI since 2009 and has served on council since 2013 in several roles including CPBI Saskatchewan, Regional Chair. She is also an active member of her community in the City of Moose Jaw.

CPBI COMMITTEES/NATIONAL BOARDS:

• 2012 CONFERENCE PLANNING COMMITTEE ONLY
• 2013 PROGRAMS COMMITTEE
• 2014 CONFERENCE PLANNING COMMITTEE
• 2015 CONFERENCE PLANNING COMMITTEE
• 2015 COMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE
• 2015 PROGRAMS COMMITTEE
• 2016 CONFERENCE PLANNING COMMITTEE
• 2016 COMMUNICATIONS
• 2016 PROGRAMS COMMITTEE
• 2016 EXECUTIVE JANUARY VICE CHAIR
• 2017 CONFERENCE PLANNING COMMITTEE
• 2018 CHAIR OF CPBI SASKATCHEWAN COUNCIL: ALL COMMITTEES
• 2019 CHAIR OF CPBI SASKATCHEWAN COUNCIL: ALL COMMITTEES
• 2020 CHAIR OF CPBI SASKATCHEWAN COUNCIL: ALL COMMITTEES

KEY CPBI ACCOMPLISHMENTS:

• ASSISTED IN ARRANGING SPEAKERS FOR 2014 SPRING CONFERENCE
• ASSISTED IN ARRANGING SPEAKERS FOR 2015 PENSIONS BEYOND BASICS
• ASSISTED IN ARRANGING SPEAKERS FOR 2015/2016 SPRING CONFERENCE
• ASSISTED IN ARRANGING SPEAKERS FOR 2017/2018 SPRING CONFERENCE
• ARRANGED NEW RELATIONSHIP WITH HUMBER COLLEGE STARTING 2018
• 2018 CHAIR OF CPBI SASKATCHEWAN COUNCIL : ALL COMMITTEES
• 2019 CHAIR OF CPBI SASKATCHEWAN COUNCIL: ALL COMMITTEES
• 2020 CHAIR OF CPBI SASKATCHEWAN COUNCIL: ALL COMMITTEES

As you can see Dara's participation in CPBI has been long and involved. She has taken a very active role in virtually all of the committees that she has participated in and has put her heart and soul into the furthering of the goals of CPBI including acitvely sharing it's vision to anyone that she feels can benefit or be of benefit to the organization.



Joanne E. Verdel

CPBI Southern Alberta Region 
Client Relationship Executive
Sun Life Financial, Group Retirement Services 

Joanne is a Client Relationship Executive in Group Retirement Services at Sun Life. She has BA in Administrative and Commercial Studies from the University of Western Ontario, has a Certified Employee Benefits Specialist Designation (CEBS), including the Retirement Plans Associate designation (RPA) and is a Certified Financial Planner Designation (CFP).

Joanne has been involved with CPBI since 2008 and has been Chair of the Marketing Committee for the Southern Alberta Region for the last few years. As part of the Marketing Committee, she looks at ways to enhance the value of a CPBI membership, and to increase the profile of CPBI in the industry.

She has also been involved in organizing several of the last CPBI Regional Conferences in Banff, as Chair of the Experience Committee.

CPBI played an important role for her when she first moved to Calgary. Our educational sessions were always interesting and educational for her, and played a key part in her development, as she was learning the business


Shelley Russell

CPBI Northern Alberta Region  
Vice President
AON Health Solutions

Shelley is currently the Vice President of AON’s Health Solutions practice in Edmonton. Shelley has over 20 years’ experience partnering with plan sponsors to help them maximize their health benefit strategy. Her past roles included health strategy and stakeholder relations for a large health benefit trust as well as a manager of major accounts for an insurer.


Shelley specializes in in applying population health analytics to develop strategy, identify opportunity, manage design and assess risk.


She graduated from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) and maintains registration with the College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA).


Shelley has served on the CBPI Northern Alberta Executive Committee, being a valuable member for over 10 years. Recently as Northern Alberta Council's secretary she keeps our meetings organized and on track and provides valuable input into the activities of the Region.



Jim Favaro

CPBI Pacific Region  
Senior Manager, Payer Engagement and Strategic Partnerships – Private Market
AstraZeneca Canada Inc.

Jim has been a huge supporter for over a decade. He is always enthusiastic to help and lend a hand with whatever is required. In the past few years he has provided stellar service participating on the Pacific council and help heading our breakfast and education committee. He has been instrumental in being in high profile speakers to our region - Jeff Macoun - Canada Life; Theron Fleury, Fred Vitesse to name a few.  He also arranged and planned for CPBI members to attend a great annual event - Octoberfest.   

Thanks Jim for always for being so helpful, cheerful and also playing a mean accordion.”   Working with Jim is always a pleasure, he is always positive a great team player and has a great approach to approaching new content and Ideals. He is a key member of the Pacific council and team and continued to contribute to CPBI even through his role changes. There is no one more deserving of this award than Jim.

Senior Retirement Consultant

CPBI AWARDS

CPBI Awards

HALL OF FAME

Nomination Process

REGIONAL VOLUNTEERS OF THE YEAR

Nomination Process

See also

2022 CPBI Atlantic Annual Sponsorship Program
December 1, 2021

CPBI Atlantic is excited to announce our 2022 CPBI Atlantic Annual Sponsorship Program. The Annual Sponsorship is separate from our Conference Sponsorship, providing your company/organization with increased visibility throughout the year during our CPBI Atlantic online events and socials.

 
Behind the scenes of the Regional Council of Ontario - November 2021
November 30, 2021

A series of interviews with our council members, the engines of our organization

 
CPBI 2021 Regional Volunteer Award Recipients
October 15, 2021

On behalf of the CPBI Board of Directors, Regional Councils and National Office, we would like to congratulate and thank the following volunteers for their involvement and contribution to the Institute.....

 
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