Meet our Trustees

Thalia Hibbs

Chair and Trustee, Lacombe Electoral Subdivision 2

Thalia Hibbs is an Athabasca University Commerce undergraduate who lives in Lacombe and attends St. Stephen’s Parish. Since completing the RCIA program in 2003, she has served on many ministries there, including secretary of the Parish Council and past-president of the CWL. Her three children attend Father Lacombe Catholic School. Mrs. Hibbs is in her second term as trustee and sought election because she is passionate about Catholic education, and believes Catholic trusteeship is an excellent ministry for serving her community. An avid runner, cyclist and reader, Mrs. Hibbs also volunteers in local sports organizations as a coach, manager or executive.

John Tomkinson

Vice Chair and Trustee, Wetaskiwin Ward

Born and raised in Alberta, John Tomkinson is a pilot and air traffic controller who moved to Wetaskiwin from Ontario in 2006 with his wife and family. Since then, he has become involved in many ministries with Sacred Heart Parish including RCIA coordinator, the Knights of Columbus and the adult faith formation committee. Six of his eight children attend Sacred Heart School. Mr. Tomkinson is a second-term trustee and was motivated to seek the position because of his great interest in protecting and advancing the delivery of education, centred on the Catholic faith. His volunteer experience includes speaking at community and men’s groups, retreats, and conferences about God’s impact on his life.

Sandra Bannard

Trustee, Drayton Valley Ward

Sandra Bannard was born and raised in the Drayton Valley area, and she and her husband own their own business. Her five children all attended or are attending local STAR Catholic schools (St. Anthony and Holy Trinity Academy). As a lifelong member of St. Anthony Parish, Mrs. Bannard has volunteered in many roles including as a confirmation teacher. She is in her fourth term as a trustee. She ran for office because of her passion for Catholic education in the development of children and to help make school a positive place where children could encounter the love of Jesus.

Dan Chalifoux

Trustee, Beaumont Electoral Subdivision 2

Dan Chalifoux is a semi-retired hobby farmer and former business owner who lives near Beaumont on a homestead that has been in his family for more than a century. He also spent nearly 30 years on the Board of the Beaumont Credit Union, 12 as chair. He was the first acolyte at his home parish of St. Vital and his Knights of Columbus service includes a term as Grand Knight. Mr. Chalifoux is in his second term as trustee, but has previous experience in that role, having been elected as a trustee under the old system while on the Leduc County Council as a councillor and reeve. He feels his experience can help acquire a new Catholic school in Beaumont and a new high school in Leduc to alleviate overcrowding.

Henry Effon

Trustee, Wetaskiwin Ward

Henry Effon is originally from Ghana, West Africa, and moved to Canada in 1998 for new life opportunities. Henry is a social worker and first-term trustee, he attended Catholic schools for most of his life prior to moving to Canada. Henry is particularly interested in policies and practices that will preserve and support Catholic education for future generations. One of the many reasons he ran for trusteeship is to advocate for children and families in educating the complete person under Canon Law. Henry and his family reside in Wetaskiwin, his three children attend Sacred Heart School; and Henry and his family are members of Sacred Heart Parish. Henry volunteers in many church and community initiatives.

Susan Kathol

Trustee, Drayton Valley Ward

Susan Kathol is a Drayton Valley rancher in her second term as Trustee. She is the Volunteer Coordinator for Alberta Health Services Drayton Valley/ Breton, a CWL member, active St. Anthony Parish member and avid gardener. Two of her children are still in school at Holy Trinity Academy while one attends University and one is working hard in the trades. Three of her children have moved on to post-secondary education, two at university and one in the trades. Her eldest has married and returned to teach at St. Anthony’s School. Mrs. Kathol sought to become a trustee to help ensure Christ is the heart and soul of every Catholic school.

Michelle Lamer

Trustee, Leduc Electoral Subdivision 1

Michelle Lamer and her family have resided in Leduc since 1999 and attend St. Michael Parish. Michelle and her husband Bruce are active participants in the Catholic Women’s League and Knights of Columbus. Their three children attended St. Benedict and Notre Dame elementary schools and all graduated from Christ The King Jr./Sr. High School. Michelle is currently employed in an administrative position in the oilfield service sector, and has served in various volunteer roles, including a mission trip with Christ The King Youth Interact Rotary group. Michelle believes Catholic education is a valuable gift that promotes the full development of a student through faith and knowledge.

Karen Richert

Trustee, Leduc Electoral Subdivision 1

Karen Richert is a small business owner who attends St. Michael’s Parish in Leduc. She has served in many ministries there including parish council and is a member of the CWL. One of her six children is still in school and attend Christ The King Junior/Senior High School. A resident of Leduc, Mrs. Richert sought election as a trustee because she wanted to awaken people to the gift of a Catholic education and to ensure an authentic Catholic education experience for students, their families and staff. She is in her third term.

Dan Svitich

Trustee, Ponoka Electoral Subdivision 1

Dan Svitich and his wife Kimberly are the proud parents of two children who attend St. Augustine School in Ponoka, where Kimberly also works as a Student Services Facilitator for junior and senior high students. As a first-term trustee, Dan brings 13 years of experience working in various school divisions to his new role. The Svitich family attend St. Augustine Parish, where Kimberly and Dan teach children’s liturgy and a baptism course, and their children participate in Catholic Kids’ Club. A volunteer firefighter with the Ponoka Fire Department, Dan is proud to serve his community in this unique way, and he looks forward to sharing his passion for Catholic education and the enrichment it brings in the development of children.