Our Team

Carol Reist

Executive Director

Carol has been at The Dam since 1999. As a grad of University of Toronto, Erindale College (now known as UTM), Carol began her career working for Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship before coming to The Dam. In 2005, she took on the role of Drop-in Director. As executive director since December 2007, Carol has a passion for the community and the way the community can be involved in the lives of youth and young moms.

You can reach Carol by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x204

Ken Dryfhout

Youth Programming Director/Youth Culture Specialist

Ken has been with The Dam since the fall of 2003 when he started as an outreach worker. Ken now oversees and provides direction to all of The Dam's youth programs. Ken has a Masters of Social Work from Wilfred Laurier University and a Masters of Divinity from Tyndale Seminary but, by far, his greatest learning has come through connection with youth over his years serving at The Dam. Ken has spoken to thousands and thousands of youth, one on one, in small groups, and to auditoriums full of young people. Through these interactions he has discovered the rebellious and revolutionary power of love, friendship, and connection.

You can reach Ken by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x205

Jill deJager

Meadowvale Program Coordinator

Jill is the Program Coordinator at our Meadowvale location. She has been been part of the Dam community since October 2008, and has considered it such a privilege to know and love all the staff, youth, young moms and children. She is a tea drinker, movie and game lover, baby snuggler, and she dearly loves to laugh.

You can reach Jill by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x212

Mike Donais

Meadowvale Youth Mentor and Marketing Specialist

Mike has been with The Dam since 2012. Mike is a youth mentor who spends most of his time at our Meadowvale location. Mike also brings a lot of experience to the Marketing department with a background in Advertising. He is also heavily involved with producing all of the videos you see on our website and YouTube channel.

You can reach Mike by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x214

Katie Cleland

Meadowvale Youth and Young Moms Mentor

Katie began working for The Dam in September of 2014. Qualified as a high school English and Drama teacher, Katie has several years teaching experience in both high school and elementary school. Katie loves having the privilege and opportunity to share life with youth and young moms in The Dam community and really enjoys the planning aspects of her position (you will often see her with a calendar nearby!). If you'd like to get to know Katie better you will probably end up going for a hike, spending time with animals, hanging out in a theatre.

You can reach Katie by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x213

Chris Williams

Cooksville Program Coordinator

Chris started working at The Dam in June 2010.  A graduate from the Sheridan College Community Worker - Outreach & Development program, you will find him in drop-in and on outreach in the Cooksville community throughout the year. During the summer, Chris uses the basketball court for connecting with the community and coordinating the annual 3on3 Basketball Tournament & Communtiy BBQ.

You can reach Chris by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x221

Melodie Telfer

Cooksville Youth Mentor and Volunteer Coordinator

Melodie started working at The Dam in the summer of 2015 as a Cooksville Youth Mentor. Soon after, Melodie took on the role of Volunteer Coordinator for both locations.

You can reach Melodie by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x223

Jill Vasey


Jill started work at The Dam in 2011. Jill brings great skill and attention to detail in providing the financial services of The Dam.

You can reach Jill by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x203

Stewart Vander Velden

Operations Manager

Stewart started at The Dam full-time in April 2017 after a year of occasional contract work. Stewart brings experience of working with youth in community development, corrections, restorative justice, foster care and the faith community.

You can reach Stewart by email or by phone: 905-826-6558 x201

Board Members

Patrick Cummins
Board position: Chairman and President
Serving since: 1999
Employer: Blaney McMurtry LLP

Patrick Cummins is a Corporate Securities lawyer who acts for clients in connection with securities law offerings and concentrates on a legal area that changes very rapidly. Since joining Blaney McMurtry LLP, he has provided ongoing advice to public and private companies and mutual fund companies. Patrick also services public issuers with respect to regulatory compliance, financing issues, shareholder communications and other regulated matters.

Cathy Joseph
Board position: Vice-President
Serving since: 2011
Employer: Peel District School Board, Student Success Lead Teacher

​Cathy Joseph is an educator whose passion for helping all students success drives her professional and volunteer work. She currently works as a Student Success Lead Teacher at a Brampton high school where she works with students and staff to ensure that all supports are in place to help students achieve the best possible result.  Cathy holds a Masters degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education where she focused her studies in designing and implementing programs for students at-risk of school failure.  Cathy brings a vast knowledge of the education system and youth programs to her role on the Board of the DAM.  Cathy is also a founding member of the Canadian Multicultural LEAD Organization that works with youth to help them achieve success in school, work and life.

John Sully
Board position: Treasurer
Serving since: June 2017
Employer: Self Employed CPA,CA

John is an experienced accountant dealing primarily with entrepreneurial companies and individuals. Over 30 years experience in financial areas for not for profit and charitable organizations.

Lorraine Tell
Board position: Secretary
Serving since: 2014
Employer: WE (formerly Free the Children), Head of Business Development

A lifelong volunteer & short-term mission trip participant, a mom and wife living in Mississauga, a member of Trinity Streetsville Anglican faith community, a business leader with 20+ years experience in sales/marketing in the Pharmaceutical business and more recently in the not-for-profit space.

Roy Gowler
Board position: Director
Serving since: 2016
Employer: Microsoft Canada Co., Global Account Manager, Financial Services

My occupational history includes a significant technology background, running my own business for many years and being in both a sales and management capacity at Microsoft Canada, for the last 16 years. As the product of a single-parent family, I am familiar with the struggles that many youth encounter as they try to grow beyond their situation. I see my role on The Dam's board as providing a voice that combines genuine caring with practical optimism and insights on how technology can help us to get to the next level in various facets of our development as an organization, including fundraising.

Alison Bing
Board position: Director
Serving since: June 2017
Employer: Innomar Strategies, Communications Manager

Alison Bing is an award winning, communicator with corporate, consumer and public affairs experience. She currently leads communications for Innomar Strategies and has held communications and public affairs positions at Canada Dry Mott's, Bayer and AstraZeneca. She has a degree in English and Political Science from the University of Waterloo, a post-graduate certificate in Public Relations from Humber College and her Accredited Business Communicator designation from the International Association of Business Communicators.