Board of Directors
EVA BC is governed by its board of directors that represent our members from 11 regions across the province.
Directors are elected at our annual general meeting and serve for two-year terms.
Sheri Bishop, Co-Chair
Interior · Region 5
Sheri is a registered social worker in BC and has been involved in the anti-violence field since 1998. She has worked in transition house programs, Community-Based Victim Services, Stopping the Violence, and PEACE programs.
Born and raised in Prince Rupert, Sheri is an ocean girl at heart, but her life path has led her inland to the beautiful Southern Interior region of our province. She moved to Merritt in 2010 and two years later, became the Agency Director for Nicola Valley Community Human Services Association (dba Nicola Family Therapy). In addition to her director duties, Sheri carries a full clinical caseload and provides individual, relationship, family, and group counselling. Sheri also serves on the board of Nicola Women in Action, which governs the Merritt Police-Based Victim Services Program.
Sheri holds a bachelor of science degree, majoring in psychology and a master of social work degree, both through the University of Northern BC. Sheri’s master of social work thesis research focused on vicarious traumatization, the impacts of front-line service, and how we can best support our front-line workers.
Outside of work, Sheri likes to play with, and re-experience, life through the eyes of her young son, walk her yellow Labrador, and engage in creative activities whenever possible.
Lynnell Halikowski, Co-Chair
North Central · Region 10
Lynnell has worked in the anti-violence field since the early 1980s. She started as a volunteer with the Prince George Sexual Assault Centre (PGSAC), then moved on to similar work throughout the region, followed educational pursuits, and had four amazing children. She returned to PGSAC in 1997 as an STV Counsellor and is now the executive director.
Lynell’s passion for this field comes from a long line of family members who have dedicated their lives to community service, advocacy, and anti-violence work.
North Vancouver Island · Region 1
Melissa has been involved in the anti-violence field for 20 years and counting. She has worked in the local transition house (Comox Valley Transition Society) as a crisis intervention worker and addictions worker and then in a Community Based Victim Services (CBVS) role. Starting as a casual employee at Comox Valley Family Services Association, she became part time, then full time, and she is now Program Coordinator of CBVS.
Melissa was born and raised in the Comox Valley. She left for brief moments but always found herself back on the Island which she will forever call her home.
Melissa has two beautiful children (Boy 11 and Girl 4), an 11-month old boxer dog named Sprocket and has been married for 12 years. Melissa works full time while attending to her duties as a mom for two weeks out of the month on her own. Melissa’s husband works away in camp to help better provide for the family and everyone’s daily needs.
Outside of work, Melissa is a full time mom of a boy who is quite athletic and enjoys baseball and hockey. It is all about the kids outside of work and to ground herself Melissa will often find herself at the beach, running, enjoying her family, friends and loved ones. Melissa and her family also enjoy camping whenever possible.
South Vancouver Island · Region 2
Samantha Loppie is Executive Director of the Victoria Sexual Assault Centre; privileged to work closely with the programs and people who support survivors of sexualized violence, their families and community.
Samantha is an uninvited visitor on the territories of the lək̓ʷəŋən people, now known as the Songhees and Esquimalt nations, and the W̱SÁNEĆ people on whose land she has worked and lived for the last 9 years. Originally from Nova Scotia, she gained a Masters Degree in Sociology from Dalhousie University, located in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq. She has spent the last 10 years in management and leaderhsip roles over a variety of sectors including sexual health, human resources and anti-violence work.
She is dedicated to collaborative leadership that uplifts the voices of people around her and strives to highlight the knowledge and experience of voices who are most often silent or silenced. As a woman with mixed ancestry, she recognizes her heritage as Black Nova Scotian, Acadian settler and honours distant roots in Mi’kmaq communities. She is grateful to sit on the Board of Directors for EVA BC and support in the effort to end gender-based violence in the province.
West Kootenay · Region 8
Victoria has lived in the Boundary region for almost 14 years. She is a registered counsellor and currently holds the Stopping The Violence Counselling (STVC) role in the Boundary area. Her background has consisted of Indigenous family support worker, PEACE program, Indigenous student support worker for SD 51, and a general manager for one of the Osoyoos Indian Bands’ businesses for many years. Her ancestry is Cree and Irish, and she is a treaty 7 Band member of the Onion Lake First Nations. She has seven children and nine grandchildren. She has held the President role for many terms with the Indigenous organization in the Boundary area.
In her spare time she loves to visit with her family, and any chance she gets she will be out fishing and camping. She facilitates events in her communities and raises awareness for MMIWG2S, Red Dress Day, Day of National Truth and Reconciliation just to name a few.
North East · Region 11
Donalda Beeson is the Manager of Therapeutic Services and Quality Assurance at Robson Valley Community Services (RVCS) supporting the communities of Valemount and McBride. She has been with RVCS for over a decade spending the majority of her time as an STV and PEACE counsellor.
An avid downhill mountain-biker, Donalda also chairs the Valemount Bike Park committee and runs an in-home studio where she shares yoga as regularly as the rest of her commitments allow.
Deanna Sudnik was born and raised in Dawson Creek and received Post Secondary Training at Grande Prairie Regional College, Northern Lights College and University of Victoria. It was during her time at Northern Lights College that she was offered a Practicum with South Peace Community Resources Society (SPCRS) and never really left!
From 1997-2011 Deanna worked in a variety of programs within the Counselling and Victim Services Department, eventually working her way up into Management. Although she missed working frontline with the clients, she loved the opportunity to support and guide the staff who were often new to this work. Deanna took a five-year hiatus from Social Services work to spend more time with her two daughters and to pursue some of her other interests before returning to the position of Department Manager after missing anti-violence work. Deanna has been an active member of EVA BC during her years in the anti-violence field.
Deanna feels very privileged to be raising two wonderful strong daughters and keeps busy outside of work with their activities. She is passionate about theatre and is a co-director of a local theatre company. Recently Deanna has returned to an earlier passion of social marketing and clean living. She has an insatiable love for travel, good food, theatre and the empowerment of women supporting women.
Anne has worked at Comox Valley Transition Society on the unceded traditional territory of the K’omoks First Nation for thirty years, where she served as Transition House Coordinator, Stopping the Violence (STV) and Prevention, Education, Advocacy, Counselling and Empowerment (PEACE) programs, and coordinated the Comox Valley Violence Against Women Community Coordinating Committee. Anne is currently a grant writer and continues to serve as a resource to all Comox Valley Transition Society programs.
Anne has an extensive background as a community activist and has served on a number of boards. Anne was appointed to the Island Health Authority in 2018 and served three terms, with an extension to 2025. She served as president of the Campbell River, Courtenay and District Labour Council and was regional director on the board of the Health Sciences Association of BC (HSA BC) for eight years where she participated in provincial and national union women’s committees advocating for unions to enhance their responses to intimate partner violence and lobbying provincial and federal governments on related issues. Anne had the good fortune to be raised by a mother who was a feminist activist. She has a deep appreciation of all those who came before us on whose shoulders we stand, and considers it to be a privilege to work alongside others who share a vision of a better, more equitable world.
Anne is married to a retired union educator and has five children and four grandchildren, all of whom bring her joy.
We thank our board of directors for their ongoing commitment, support and direction.
If you work with a member program and would like to run to serve on our board, please email us at email@example.com.