Mission Services of London Board Members

Wendy Broadhead head shotWendy Broadhead

President

Wendy Broadhead (formerly Toth) was raised in London and graduated from the University of Ontario. She commenced her career in drug development and registration in Ottawa and Toronto, returning to London with her family in 1990. Wendy has worked in clinical research environments involving the government, hospital and pharmaceutical-biotech industries. Her volunteer roles began most notably in the senior administration roles at Westview Baptist Church, as well as in the non-profit community. She is a past chair of the executive board for Pathways Skills Development Centre. Wendy is currently enjoying retirement, living in Old South and attending Crossroads Alliance Church. Her leadership and organizational skills including financial and project management, strategic planning and quality assurance are beneficial in her volunteer roles.

Deb Peckham head shotDeb Peckham

Board Secretary

Deb Peckham grew up in the east end of London. She was employed at a local law firm for 28 years when an illness that could not be diagnosed caused her to lose her job, and then her home. Due to the strife caused in the transition to “the system”, it was an easy decision for her to volunteer in the areas of homelessness, poverty and affordable/social housing. Since then, Deb has become a vocal housing advocate, sitting on three Boards of Directors, as well as participating in the Steering Committee of the London Homeless Coalition and representing the tenant population on the London Housing Advisory Committee at City Hall. Due to her active role at the Leadership Table of the city council‘s London For All project, Deb was asked to co-chair the Ending Poverty Priority Team of London’s Child & Youth Network.

David Cuellar head shotDavid Cuellar

Chair, Governance Committee

David was born in Bogota, Colombia, where he spent his early years enjoying various activities at the National University of Colombia campus, where his parents were professors. David studied Industrial Engineering and received a Master’s degree in Marketing and Agribusiness. He married Juliana who shared his passion for travelling. Both decided to experience a different culture, and moved to London, Ontario in 2009 with their two-year-old daughter. Living in Canada has been an enriching experience for him. With the ups and downs of an immigration journey he has learned how impactful community services can be, and the positive difference they make in the lives of individuals, families and communities.

Alex Verdun head shotAlex Verdun

Chair, Finance/Audit Committee

Alex was born and raised in Hamilton and recalls being mentored in his Christian walk and developing leadership skills in both high school and university. Alex obtained his engineering degree at the University of Waterloo and is an engineer at Forest City Fire Protection.  He brings to the MSL Board an ability to break down complex situations into component parts to better understand and evaluate them.  Alex has over 20 years of charitable and not for profit board experience.  He has served on the leadership team at West Park Church where he and his wife Carole attend. In his spare time, he enjoys reading history books, historical fiction and books on leadership or listening to podcasts. Despite his love for the techy things in life, Alex also has a great fondness for canoeing and wilderness camping.

Tom Timmerman head shotTom Timmerman

Chair, Program Steering Committee

Tom has lived in Southwestern Ontario his entire life, settling in London for the last 35 years. Recently retiring from an executive position at a major Canadian bank, he has broad leadership and management experience as well as specific project management skills. Tom has participated on various committees, councils, and boards in business and non-profit scenarios as he desires to utilize his experience to make a difference in individuals and their communities. He attends Northpark Community Church and currently directs their Refugee Ministry. Tom is married with children and grandchildren and enjoys grandparenting, cycling, and following his favourite sports teams. 

John de Vries head shotJohn de Vries

After immigrating to Canada from the Netherlands, John de Vries lived in Chatham and Hamilton. John earned university and seminary degrees to follow his passion for a Christian difference in church and community. John served as pastor in Regina and Hamilton Christian Reformed congregations. John was Protestant Chaplain, Canadian Federal Penitentiary in Montreal. For twelve years John worked pastorally and administratively as Regional Co-ordinator of Chaplaincy Services, Government of Ontario. This included hospital, psychiatric, correctional, long term care and special needs facilities. Realizing the limitations of impersonal Correctional and Clinical responses to personal and community brokenness, John, in retirement, became a Restorative Justice advocate. John continues to serves on federal correctional and multi-faith boards, committed to creating a safer and healthier Canada.

Keith Vincent head shotKeith Vincent

Keith was born and lived in West Africa for nine years.  After returning to Great Britain for a year, his family immigrated to Canada where they settled in South-Western Ontario.  He holds the equivalent of a BSc in Computer Science. Keith began his career with IBM Canada, where he worked there for over 40 years before retiring in 2015. During that time, he held multiple IT consulting and management positions.  His role often involved global travel that provided both a perspective and appreciation of multiple cultures. Keith’s business management and consulting experience allows him to bring a governance perspective to the MSL Board. Keith and Jennifer are currently members at Maitland Street Church where he also serves on the leadership team. In previous congregations, Keith has held various leadership positions, including Board chair.

Kim Cechetto head shotKim Cechetto

Past President

Kim Cechetto (nee Todd) grew up in London, Ontario in a Christian home and was active in both church and campus ministries throughout her school years. After graduating from Western University, and marrying David Cechetto, she lived in Ottawa, Nigeria, St. Louis, and Chicago before returning to live permanently in London in 1987. Since then, Kim has been a faculty member at Fanshawe College, teaching and providing academic leadership in the School of Language and Liberal Studies, which has included working with international students from around the world.  In addition, Kim has worked with the Rwandan Ministry of Education to train teachers in English. Kim is a member of Gateway Church. Her cross-cultural experiences and passion for advocating for marginalized people, both here and abroad, will help her contribute as a board member.

Sheldon Wood head shotSheldon Wood

Sheldon holds a B.A. from Wilfrid Laurier University (history) and an LL.B. (law degree) from the University of Western Ontario and has over thirty years of experience working in law firms ranging from four to over five hundred lawyers, and has been a member of the Charity Group for one of Canada’s largest law firms. Sheldon has, since 2006, acted as General Counsel for Teen Challenge Canada Inc., a national faith-based substance abuse rehabilitation charity. He also assists national and international Christian charities, and works with the national and regional offices of a wide variety of Christian denominations. Presently he is the National Council Vice-Chair with the Fellowship of Evangelical Baptist Churches in Canada. His non-profit efforts include having served on the boards of his church, the Christian Legal Fellowship, the Ontario Bar Association Charity Section, and community organizations, as well as with World Embrace in Uganda and the United States (previously as the Board Chair).

Susan Mitchell

Susan Mitchell (nee Thomas) was born in South Wales, lived in Scotland for twenty years and immigrated to Canada with her husband and two boys in December of 1991. Her husband John joined the staff at Teen Challenge Farm, and Susan volunteered in the sponsorship and development office while completing studies as a Registered Nurse. Her career in health care involved leadership positions in community nursing in the area of palliative care, and as part of a team in the surgical suite.

Susan further developed her interest in donor development and fundraising, transitioning into a second career with Christ for all Nations, an international faith-based organization. This transition occurred after a time of deep loss when their youngest son Neil died tragically at the age of 21 years. Her faith journey which began in her teen years deepened during this time of grief and spiritual searching. As Director of Donor Management with the organization, Susan developed the Legacy and Bequest program, and built relationships with donors from across Canada, travelling with many of them to events in Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa. Susan retired in 2018, is actively involved in Open Door Christian Fellowship, and Gateway Church London. In between volunteering with non-profits in the area of fundraising, she enjoys time with her grandchildren, her lifelong love of reading, and walking her West Highland White terrier, Maisie.

More Articles