Governance

Board of Directors

The Bereavement Authority of Ontario (BAO) is currently governed by an eight-member interim board of directors. These directors include representatives from industry associations, a religious organization, a municipality, government, the former Board of Funeral Services, a consumer representative, and an individual with extensive DAA experience.

Tom Wright, Chair

Tom Wright was elected Chair of the Interim Board of Directors of the Bereavement Authority of Ontario in September 2014. He is also Chair of the Interim Board of Directors of the Ontario Film Authority, elected in 2013.

In November 1997 Tom became Registrar under the Real Estate and Business Brokers Act and in January 2002 became CEO at the Real Estate Council of Ontario until his retirement in September 2014. RECO was one of the first delegated administrative authorities established by what is now the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services.

From 1991 to 1997 Tom was Information and Privacy Commissioner for the Province of Ontario heading the office responsible for ensuring that ministries and government agencies of the provincial government and municipal organizations comply with Ontario’s freedom of information and privacy laws.

A graduate of Queen’s Law School, Tom was called to the Ontario Bar in 1975 and practised law for 10 years prior to joining the Ontario Public Service in 1985 where he held various legal positions.


Aubrey LeBlanc, Vice-Chair

Aubrey LeBlanc volunteers as President of the Consumers Council of Canada, whose members form the most active, Canada-wide multi-issue consumer group. The Consumers Council of Canada aims to create an efficient, equitable, safe and effective marketplace.

Aubrey is Chief Administrative Officer of the Ontario Building Officials Association, an industry association representing, training and certifying Ontario’s municipal plans examiners and building inspectors. He is also principal of his own building and residential consulting practice, with clientele which includes: governments, builders and developers, construction materials and innovation enterprises, energy efficiency companies, inspector groups, and other building industry organizations.

For a decade, Aubrey was President and Registrar of the Ontario New Home Warranty Program (now TARION Warranty Corporation), a highly respected legislated consumer-protection delegated authority of the Ontario Government. He has also been a senior executive in several provincial government departments and portfolios in communications, taxation, transportation, northern development, and housing, and was most recently the executive responsible for the Ontario Building Code, in the role of Chief Building Official for Ontario.

Internationally, Aubrey has represented the Canadian building industry, the Government of Canada, and the Ontario government to provide counsel to various countries in Europe, North and South America, Asia and Australia, as well as most Canadian provinces.

He has a M.Sc. from the University of Wisconsin, and a MBA from York University’s Schulich School of Business.


Renu Kulendran, Secretary-Treasurer

Renu Kulendran is the Assistant Deputy Minister of the Consumer Services Operations Division in the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services. Renu is responsible for delivering the ministry’s consumer complaint, regulatory compliance and enforcement programs; implementing modernized data and risk-based awareness, prevention and enhanced compliance and enforcement strategies for the ministry; transforming ministry program delivery through expansion of the delegated administrative authority model and providing expert advice on the model across government; and, developing regulatory partnerships with other ministries, governments and enforcement entities to achieve consumer protection objectives.

Renu has extensive experience in social and economic resource policy development; issues management; stakeholder relations; and, experience managing complex enforcement and compliance issues in an operational context.

Renu has held senior leadership positions at the Ministry of Labour, Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services, the Ministry of Education, and Cabinet Office. She has worked in the Ontario Public Service for over 25 years.


Yves Berthiaume, Director

Yves Berthiaume is the President and CEO of Salon Funéraire Familial Berthiaume Family Funeral Home Inc., a family business established in 1896 with operations in both Ontario and Quebec. Yves is the current Chair of the Board of Funeral Service of Ontario since 2014, a member of the Board of Funeral Service Association of Canada, and Vice President of the group Professional en Rituals Funéraire.

At the age of 40, Yves was the youngest President of Optimist International, one of the four largest service club organizations in the world. He is currently President-elect of the Canadian Children’s Optimist Foundation for 2015-2016.

Yves was also the initiator of the "Loss, Grief, and Growth Program", which offers educational material to students starting from Kindergarten through grade 12 in schools across Canada.


Steve Heldman, Director

A seasoned professional with almost 30 years of municipal government experience, Steve is currently the Director of Recreation and Facility Services for the Corporation of the City of Waterloo. Within this role, Steve has been responsible for overall facility operations, business services, programming and event management including management of the City’s Cemetery Services division. Steve is also proud to have served on the Board for the Ontario Association of Cemetery and Funeral Professionals for several years where he held the position of President in 2006.


John O’Brien, Director

John J. O'Brien was appointed Episcopal Delegate for Cemeteries and Insurance by the Most Reverend Douglas Crosby, OMI, D.D., Bishop of Hamilton on January 1, 2014. He served as the Business Administrator of The Roman Catholic Diocese of Hamilton 1999 to 2013 and Director of The Catholic Cemeteries of the Diocese of Hamilton from 1987 to 2013.

Mr. O'Brien served as President of the Catholic Cemetery Conference, Chicago, Illinois from 2002-2004 and spent a total of thirteen years on the Catholic Cemetery Conference Board. He is currently President of the Ontario Catholic Cemetery Conference serving the Catholic Bishops of Ontario. Since 1999 he has served on the Insurance Management Board of the Ontario Conference of Catholic Bishops. In April 2014 he was elected President of the Board of the Catholic Umbrella Pool II, a reinsurance investment pool forming part of the Catholic Mutual Group of Omaha, Nebraska. In July of 2014, he became one of the incorporating Directors of the Bereavement Authority of Ontario.

Mr. O'Brien served a three year term as a member of the Board and Treasurer of Catholic Missions in Canada (2004), and served ten years as a Trustee of St. Joseph’s Villa (2003), a 428 bed Long Term Care Facility. Mr. O'Brien is the third generation of his family to be actively involved in Catholic cemetery management.


Brian Parent, Director

Brian Parent is currently the Legislative Co-chair and Past President for the Ontario Funeral Service Association and has been a member since 1982. He is the owner of Families First Funeral Home in Windsor, Ontario and has been a licensed funeral director for over 27 years. In 2010, Brian received the Business of the Year Award from the Windsor & Essex District Chamber of Commerce for his funeral home.

Brian serves as a director in a number of organizations. He is currently the President of the Victim Services Board of Management, the Past President of the Victorian Order of Nurses, and a director for the Essex Regional Conservation Authority.

Brian is also very active as a member of the National Funeral Directors Association, the Funeral Service Association of Canada, and the Windsor & Essex District Chamber of Commerce.


Glen Timney, Director

Glen Timney is the Vice President Corporate Development for the Mount Pleasant Group of Cemeteries in Toronto. He has worked within Ontario’s bereavement industry for over 40 years.

Glen has twice served as President of the Ontario Association of Cemetery and Funeral Professionals and as a member of the Board of Directors for 8 years. For more than 3 decades he has travelled throughout the province conducting legislation and operations training seminars for licensees. For 13 years Glen chaired the OACFP legislation committee and represented the association during government negotiations, culminating in the proclamation of the Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act in July 2012.

Glen is dedicated to spending time with his family and serving his community. A past president of the local Rotary Club and active member for over 20 years, Glen was honoured with a Paul Harris Fellowship for his charitable community endeavours. He is a Knight Commander within the Order of St. Lazarus, a world-wide charitable organization established in 1093 which supports palliative and hospice care throughout Canada and the eradication of leprosy globally. A past Commander of the Toronto Commandery and Vice Chancellor Commanderies for Canada, Glen currently serves as Commander Emeritus in Toronto.

Glen has served as treasurer for two charitable foundations and a Board member of a children’s home. He currently serves on the Humber College Health Sciences Funeral Education Advisory Committee, and is an inaugural member of the Board of Directors of the Bereavement Authority of Ontario.

Stakeholder Advisory Committees

As part of its governance structure, the BAO has a Board of Directors (the Board) supported by three Stakeholder Advisory Committees (Advisory Committees):

These volunteer committees will be comprised of sector and consumer representatives who will provide the Board and the Registrar with expert advice on matters affecting the bereavement sector.

As the BAO embarks on its first year of operations and transitions its governance process, the interim Board has approved the appointment of inaugural Chairs for each Advisory Committee. These individuals will serve as both Chairs and as Directors of the Board*, for a one year term only.

  • Funeral & Transfer Services Advisory Committee Chair: Brian Parent

  • Cemetery, Crematorium & Municipal Advisory Committee Chair: Glen Timney

  • Faith-based Advisory Committee Chair: John O'Brien

*Subject to Minister's approval

In summer 2016, the Bereavement Authority of Ontario completed its initial nominations process to select members to serve on its inaugural Advisory Committees. It is anticipated that the first meeting of Advisory Committees will take place in January 2017, after the permanent Board is in place.

Call for Nominations for the Stakeholder Advisory Committees

The Bereavement Authority of Ontario (BAO) invites eligible candidates to apply for vacant member positions on the following Advisory Committees:

  • Funeral and Transfer Service Advisory Committee (1 vacant member position)
    • One (1) Consumer Representative
  • Faith-Based Advisory Committee (4 vacant member positions)
    • One (1) member from each of the following faith groups: Orthodox Christian; Hindu; Sikh; and
    • One (1) member from a faith or belief organization not represented by current FBAC members or as listed above

Nomination Process

A Nominations Committee comprised of members of the interim Board will review applications from candidates to serve on the Advisory Committees. Those candidates considered most qualified will be recommended to the Board, for their consideration and appointment. Candidates will be drawn from a cross-section of designated sectors, geographical regions and religious affinity (where applicable), as outlined in the eligibility requirements listed within each committee profile:

Application Process

If you are interested in applying, please complete an Application for Appointment to Stakeholder Advisory Committee , and submit it by Friday, July 29, 2016. Applications must be accompanied by two letters of support from individuals, associations or religious organizations from the same sector as the committee being applied for. Nominee phone interviews may be conducted in August 2016.

By Mail
Bereavement Authority of Ontario
Attn: Nominations Committee
100 Sheppard Ave East,
Suite 505
Toronto, ON, M2N 6N5

By Email:  nominations@thebao.ca

Committee Members

  • Brian Parent (Chair), Families First Funeral Homes

  • Angie Aquino, Canadian Memorial Services

  • Loyal David Beggs, Beggs Funeral Home Ltd.

  • Jay Branton, Service Corporation International (SCI)

  • Terrence Eccles, Arbor Memorial Services

  • Rick Ludwig, Kitching, Steepe and Ludwig Funeral Home

  • Scott Miller, Hulse, Playfair & McGarry

  • Carolyn Nixon, Affordable Funeral Options

  • Paul Ouellette, Acronamic Learning System

Committee Mandate

The Funeral & Transfer Service Advisory Committee (FTSAC) will bring together sector representatives from Ontario to discuss issues that affect funeral and transfer service licensees, will provide expert advice to the Registrar and the Board of the Directors (the Board) on matters relating to the regulation of funeral and transfer services in Ontario, and will provide for open communication between licensees in the funeral and transfer services sectors and the Board.

Composition/Eligibility

  • Seven (7) Funeral Directors or operators, licensed in good standing;
  • At least one (1) representative from a small population centre (population of 1,000- 29,000);
  • At least two (2) representatives from a medium population centre (population of 30,000- 99,999);
  • At least one (1) representative from a large population centre (population over 100,000);
  • One (1) transfer service operator member, licensed in good standing; and
  • One (1) consumer representative, member from a recognized consumer organization or with a demonstrated interest or expertise in consumer protection in the bereavement sector.

Terms of Office

  • The terms of office for the FTSAC will be staggered.
  • Advisory Committee members will be appointed to a two (2) or three (3) year term, to a maximum of six (6) years.

Expected Commitment

  • Attendance at all meetings – anticipated to be at least two (2) meetings held each year, or more frequently if needed. Meetings will be held via video-teleconference or in person at the BAO office, during business hours.
  • Adequate review of meeting materials in advance of meetings.

Compensation

Advisory Committee member positions are volunteer and unpaid. The BAO will reimburse for reasonable travel and out-of-pocket expenses associated with attendance at meetings or special functions in accordance with the BAO’s Expenses policy.

Click here for a copy of the Terms of Reference.

Committee Members

  • Glen Timney (Chair), Mount Pleasant Group

  • Heather Anderson, Ontario Historical Society

  • Helma Oonk, Glenwood Cemetery Company

  • Ian Merritt, The Lindsay Cemetery Corporation

  • Jeff Wakeford, Little Lake Cemetery Company

  • Kirby Butler, Southwest Crematoriums Ltd.

  • Larry Moore, St. John's Cemetery and Columbarium

  • Lillian Logan, Township of Lanark Highlands

  • Ron Hendrix, Catholic Cemeteries & Funeral Services

Committee Mandate

The Cemetery, Crematorium & Municipal Advisory Committee (CCMAC) will bring together sector representatives from Ontario to discuss issues that affect cemetery and crematorium service licensees, will provide expert advice to the Registrar and the Board of the Directors (the Board) on matters relating to the regulation of cemetery and crematorium services in Ontario, and will provide for open communication between licensees in the cemetery and crematorium service sectors and the Board.

Composition/Eligibility

 The CCMAC shall be comprised of up to nine (9) members.  A single corporation or entity may not have representation on more than one Advisory Committee and may only have one representative on any one Advisory Committee.  Committee members should be representative of Ontario’s diverse geographical regions.  Best efforts will be made to appoint individuals who meet the following criteria:

  • Six (6) cemetery operators, licensed in good standing:
    • One (1) representative from a not-for-profit cemetery operator
    • One (1) representative from a commercial cemetery operator
    • Two (2) representatives from municipal cemetery operators, each representing different population centres (small 1,000- 29,000; medium 30,000- 99,999; large 100,000+)
    • Two (2) representatives of religious cemeteries, each representing a different religious organizations;
  • Two (2) crematorium operators, licensed in good standing; and
  • One (1) consumer representative, member from a recognized consumer organization or with a demonstrated interest or expertise in consumer protection in the bereavement sector.

Terms of Office

  • The terms of office for the CCMAC will be staggered.
  • Advisory Committee members will be appointed to a two (2) or three (3) year term, to a maximum of six (6) years.

Expected Commitment

  • Attendance at all meetings – anticipated to be at least two (2) meetings held each year, or more frequently if needed. Meetings will be held by video-teleconference or in person at the BAO office, during business hours.
  • Adequate review of meeting materials in advance of meetings.

Compensation

Advisory Committee member positions are volunteer and unpaid. The BAO will reimburse for reasonable travel and out-of-pocket expenses associated with attendance at meetings or special functions in accordance with the BAO’s Expenses policy.

Click here for a copy of the Terms of Reference.

Committee Members

  • John O'Brien (Chair), The Catholic Cemeteries

  • Imam Imran Ally, TARIC Islamic Centre

  • The Reverend Daniel Graves, St. Paul's Anglican Church

  • Wayne Harris, Perth Cemetery Company

  • William Draimin, Barrister & Solicitor

Committee Mandate

The Faith-Based Advisory Committee (FBAC) will bring together faith representatives from Ontario to discuss issues that affect the bereavement sector, will provide expert advice to the Registrar and the Board of the Directors (the Board) on issues of faith as they relate to funeral and transfer services or cemeteries and crematoriums in Ontario, and will provide for open communication between faith groups and the Board.

Composition/Eligibility

The FBAC shall be comprised of up to nine (9) members. A single corporation or entity may not have representation on more than one Advisory Committee and may only have one representative on any one Advisory Committee. Committee members should be representative of Ontario’s diverse geographical regions. Best efforts will be made to appoint individuals who meet the following criteria:

  • One (1) member from each of the following faith groups: Roman Catholic; Anglican; United; Orthodox Christian; Jewish; Muslim; Hindu; Sikh; and
  • One (1) member from a faith or belief organization not included in the above list.

Representatives should have expertise in faith requirements for bereavement practices of the faith group they are representing and should be nominated by a church, synagogue, mosque, temple, worship centre or organization for the faith being represented. Committee members must not be licensed funeral, transfer service, cemetery or crematorium operators but if employed by one of these organizations, they may submit a FBAC nomination provided that their primary job function does not relate to the operation or provision of licensed bereavement sector services. The Board may request a written statement from a nominee confirming this.

Terms of Office

  • The terms of office for the FBAC will be staggered.
  • Advisory Committee members will be appointed to a two (2) or three (3) year term, to a maximum of six (6) years.

Expected Commitment

  • Attendance at all meetings – anticipated to be at least two (2) meetings held each year, or more frequently if needed. Meetings will be held via video-teleconference or in person at the BAO office, during business hours.
  • Adequate review of meeting materials in advance of meetings.

Compensation

Advisory Committee member positions are volunteer and unpaid. The BAO will reimburse for reasonable travel and out-of-pocket expenses associated with attendance at meetings or special functions in accordance with the BAO’s Expenses policy.

Click here for a copy of the Terms of Reference.

Relationship with Government

The Bereavement Authority of Ontario (BAO) administers provisions of the Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act, 2002 (FBCSA) for the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGCS).

The BAO is responsible for the licensing and enforcement of cemetery, crematorium, funeral establishments, funeral directors, funeral pre-planners, transfer service operators and transfer service sales representatives.

MGCS is responsible for legislation and regulations, and for providing oversight of the BAO. MGCS has also retained responsibility for burial sites, war graves, cemetery closures and abandonments.

MGCS monitors the performance of the BAO to ensure that marketplace standards are maintained through reporting and accountability mechanisms such as business plans, annual reports and third-party audits.

Administrative Agreement

The Administrative Agreement between the Minister of MGCS and the BAO sets out the matters of the Act that the Ontario Government has delegated to the BAO. The agreement clarifies the roles, duties and responsibilities of the Minister and the BAO and sets out the administrative, financial, auditing, accountability, legislative and regulatory development, and the working relationship between the two parties.

Access the Administrative Agreement here.

Administrative Authorities

Administrative authorities are responsible for ensuring that a number of Ontario’s consumer protection and public safety laws are applied and enforced.

The government oversees administrative authorities and is responsible for the legislation and regulations that are applied and enforced by administrative authorities.

Currently, MGCS oversees 10 administrative authorities:


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