Who We Are
The people behind SFU Public Square are committed to working collaboratively to create space for diverse voices and ideas. Our permanent staff are joined by community volunteers and students through the work-study, co-op and peer education program who infuse our approach with their energy and ideas. Much more than a production team, we confront the complexity of topics in our programming through a spirit of always learning and striving for better. This culture challenges us to think holistically and extend ourselves towards ever more interesting, inclusive, and productive engagements.
Janet Webber (she/her) – Executive Director
Janet effectively designs and facilitates community engagement activities which encourage the respectful exchange of diverse values and ideas. Locally and internationally she has convened innovative, inclusive and impactful events for small intimate groups and for audiences numbered in the thousands. The north star that guides Janet’s work is her belief in the fundamental importance of bringing people into spaces and conversations with each other on the issues that shape our individual and collective lives. Janet is originally from Toronto, lives in Vancouver and holds a BA in Psychology and an Executive MBA.
Sherry Stevenson (she/her) – Project Director, National Dialogue on Canada’s Futures
Sherry is an experienced adult educator and community development professional with a background in international development and program management. She has a passion for social and environmental justice and is inspired by community-based initiatives for social impact. She is drawn to collaborative work seeking innovative solutions to society’s most complex challenges. Community is at the heart of her approach – where she loves to engage with folks of diverse backgrounds, skills, and ways of knowing – to create, collaborate, and learn together. She holds an M.A. in Adult Education with a specialization in Community Development from Saint Francis Xavier University and an Honours B.A. in Human Rights & Psychology from Carleton University.
National Dialogue on Canada’s Futures is a collaboration between SFU Public Square and the Cascade Institute of Royal Roads University. The Dialogue engages diverse people from coast to coast to coast in imagining positive futures for our country and finding pathways we can follow to make those futures real.
Seth Erais (he/him) – Program Manager
Seth comes to SFU Public Square with a professional background in student engagement, program development and event planning. He is an educator and advocate for accessibility and meaningful inclusion. Before working with SFU Public Square, he developed and facilitated interreligious and intercultural education and programming for students, staff and faculty at the University of Calgary. Seth completed his BA in Religious Studies with a focus on pedagogy and experiential learning in post-secondary education at the University of Calgary. He believes in the power of storytelling for social change.
Learn more about Seth in this People of SFU story.
Gabrielle Parent (she/her) - Communications Lead
With a BA in Anthropology and Greek and Roman Studies from the University of Victoria, Gabrielle often refers to herself as an accidental communications professional. After a series of internships, Gabrielle’s love for storytelling led to her discovery of the communications field. Following her time at the Office of the Seniors Advocate of BC, Gabrielle decided to shift towards education and community engagement. As a queer woman, avid reader, and amateur writer, Gabrielle believes in the power of storytelling in uniting a community, sharing perspectives, and enacting social change.
Learn more about Gabrielle in her Meet the Team interview
Silvana Martinez (she/her) – Events Lead
Silvana joins SFU Public Square following a year in the non-profit sector. Originally from Colombia and holding a BA in Human Geography from UBC, Silvana enjoys learning from different perspectives and contributing to the creation of safe spaces for dialogue and knowledge sharing. She is excited to work and learn alongside the university and the local community to deliver engaging and inclusive programming with SFU Public Square. In her spare time, Silvana enjoys dancing, singing, and walking around the city with a good playlist on her headphones.
Learn more about Silvana in her Meet the Team interview
Nola Mellon (they/them) – Design Lead
Nola believes in the power of building human connection through design and storytelling. Originally from Dublin, Ireland, they have a BA in Visual Communication Design and a Diploma in Graphic Design. With a passion for continuous learning and unlearning, Nola is drawn towards projects surrounding social justice and community engagement.
Learn more about Nola in their Meet the Team interview
Gabriel Alegbeleye (he/him) – Program Assistant
Gabriel is a 4th-year Criminology major at Simon Fraser University. He believes knowledge is one of the most powerful tools, and that when equipped with knowledge, a community can thrive. Gabriel has a passion for community building, art, digital media, and justice. He is excited to be part of a growing SFU and British Columbia community and hopes to make significant impact at any given opportunity. In his spare time, Gabriel enjoys cooking, exercising, and planning towards the future.