Patrick is a professional mechanical engineer/supply chain manager known for his leadership on several corporate transformation efforts, including corporate governance, structural design, mergers & acquisitions, and talent development. Patrick has been volunteering with our Board of Directors since 2017. He is currently the Secretary.
“I have to confess that, although I had been living in Calgary since 2012, I was not aware of CCIS.”
Like many supporters, Patrick first heard about CCIS through word of mouth when he encountered a new immigrant from his home country Nigeria, who had benefitted from the services CCIS provides. In 2016, a mutual friend connected him to our Chief Executive Officer, Fariborz Birjandian, and a friendship began to grow.
“Over time, our friendship grew to the point where he asked if I would be willing to serve on the Board. Considering the amazing work CCIS does, it was hard to say no. And it is even more difficult to say no to Fariborz!”
Volunteering has been an eye-opening experience for Patrick. He learned how CCIS provides the bridge to assist immigrants and refugees as they settle into the community, and quickly become fully contributing members. He became aware of the informal leadership CCIS provides in the sector, the incredible work of the volunteers, and the unflinching commitment of staff. Patrick witnessed the various ways CCIS supports new immigrants and refugees through professional networking events, skill training classroom tours, and visits to the Margaret Chisholm Resettlement Centre, where staff and volunteers provide critical support for newly arrived refugees.
“I am convinced, with the benefit of insider knowledge, that without CCIS and other similar organizations, our society will be the worse for it. Every individual supported through the many programs of CCIS is a family taken off a lot of unwanted lists.”
Patrick understands that life can get tough and busy for most people, and for some way more than others. However, he advises everyone to use whatever resources are at their disposal, because every little bit helps.
“Immigration and our diversity are what hold us together and make our economy strong. Every resource – time, money, knowledge, effort, is something that will help new immigrants settle in and start to contribute faster.”