The BC Society of Transition Houses is a member-based, provincial umbrella organization that, through leadership, support and collaboration, enhances the continuum of services and strategies to respond to, prevent and end violence against women, children and youth.
Amy FitzGerald | Executive Director
Amy has been a lawyer for over 20 years and previously was an Assistant Attorney General (AAG) in the Criminal Division at the Vermont Attorney General’s Office where she worked on unsolved homicides and was the domestic violence AAG focusing on policy, legislative and training issues. She was the founding Chair of Vermont’s Domestic Violence Fatality Review Commission and served on Vermont’s Child Fatality Review Team. In B.C., Amy has been a policy analyst and has consulted on projects relating to safe transportation needs in Northern BC.firstname.lastname@example.org
Aleks Besan | Director of Training
Aleks (they/she) is an engagement and education specialist whose career has spanned across the not-for-profit and post-secondary sectors. Aleks has designed and delivered programs on EDI (equity, diversity, and inclusion), mental health, civic engagement, and leadership development with Battered Women’s Support Services, Check Your Head, Open Media, Vantage Point, and Simon Fraser University. They have previously been involved on the Board of ProChoices Community Therapy Clinic, and currently sit on the Boards of the Crisis Centre of BC and Mediate BC. With a deep passion for harm reduction and alternative dispute resolution, Aleks is also a trained mediator and restorative justice facilitator. Outside of work, Aleks loves to cycle across the Lower Mainland, create visual art, and listen to queer and feminist podcasts.
Allison Westbridge | Office Administrator
Allison joins the BCSTH Team with a diverse background in Women’s Studies, English Literature, and Hospitality Management. Having spent the past few years in the hospitality industry in various roles including customer service, accounting, sales and most recently event management, she is excited to be reconnecting with the anti-violence sector and supporting an organization that is committed to the important work of ending violence against women, children and youth. When she is not in the office, Allison can be found exploring the city’s beautiful parks, beaches and mountains with her family and friends.
Asia McLean | Training Coordinator
Asia comes to BCSTH with a background in front-line work with diverse populations across the Lower Mainland. She graduated from the School of Criminology at Simon Fraser University in 2018, where she found a passion for restorative and community-based justice processes and assisted on a number of research projects. Since then, her work has focused largely on supporting people with diverse abilities in accessing community supports and navigating the criminal justice system. Asia is passionate about violence prevention and building capacity within individuals and communities to address conflict using restorative approaches.
Cori Kleisinger | Cedar Blankets Project Coordinator
Cori, mother and grandmother of 6, has worked in the anti-violence field with families in a variety of roles from front line to management and brings more than 25 years’ experience in Indigenous and non-Indigenous Urban communities. Cori, born in Winnipeg during Manitoba’s 60’s scoop, is from mixed heritage (Anishinaabe and Irish), uses the privilege assigned by her European appearance and wealth of lived experience to advocate for social justice and to making space for Indigenous families and communities to bring their teachings and traditions forward for the health and benefit of future generations coming up.
Hannah Lee | Manager of Membership Services
Hannah began her work with BCSTH in 2009. Her main role is to support and liaise with BCSTH membership and coordinating projects such as Building Supports and Reaching Out with Yoga projects. She is committed to her work ending gender-based violence and gets inspiration from members she supports, her colleagues and the women and children she serves. Outside of work, Hannah is a dedicated yoga practitioner and volunteers her time at a crisis line.
Louise Godard (on leave) | Director of Programs
Louise has been working in the anti-violence sector for 20 years in various capacities including front-line crisis work, community-based research, policy development, and international work developing health policy for young girls trafficked and exploited in the sex trade. Louise has worked on a number of different BCSTH projects such as the PEACE Toolkit, Building Supports and as a research coordinator on the Reaching Out with Yoga project. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with family and friends in the beautiful outdoors.
Nicky Bowman | Children and Youth Services Coordinator
Nicky joined BCSTH in 2017, working as Research Coordinator on the Reaching Out with Yoga project. As of 2019 Nicky took on the role of Children and Youth Services Coordinator. Nicky has a background in psychology and prior to joining the BCSTH she worked as an Assistant Psychologist and Research Assistant in the areas of mental health and physical health, with a focus on children and youth in the UK.
Rhiannon Wong | Technology Safety Project Lead
Rhiannon joined BCSTH in 2007. Rhiannon has been in many roles at BCSTH but most notably as the Children and Youth Services Coordinator for 8 years. Currently she is the Technology Safety Coordinator. Through resource development, membership support, policy review and education, her work has primarily focused on the impact that violence against women can have on children, young people and mothers. She is committed to raise awareness about technology facilitated violence and the intersections of empowerment, safety of women and children, confidentiality and privacy. Rhiannon is grateful for the opportunity to learn from the wisdom of women and children with lived experience, BC’s anti-violence workers, project partners and inspirational colleagues who continue to influence her work.
Tanyss Knowles | Project Manager
Tanyss is the project manager for the Getting Home Project, which focuses on long-term affordable housing solutions for women fleeing violence. She is passionate about community-building and social policy that meets local needs and promotes community strengths. Tanyss has worked with rural and remote communities in BC and all three territories on youth empowerment, popular education, and anti-violence projects. Outside of work, Tanyss loves to be surrounded by nature whether it’s backcountry camping or tending her balcony garden.
Tina Chau | Librarian
Tina began working for BCSTH in 2009 when she was hired to develop the BCSTH Library online catalogue. She now provides the full range of BCSTH Library services and is pleased that her library, teaching and research experience can be used to support the work being done by BCSTH members. She enjoys connecting people with the print, audiovisual and online resources they need, and welcomes requests and questions.