Our Board of Directors

The Saskatoon Open Door Society is governed by a Board of Directors with a maximum of 12 members and is led by a Chief Executive Officer appointed by the Board. Board members are elected by the SODS membership.

The Board meets at least six times annually and is responsible for the oversight of the organization’s policies, programs, budgets and grant decisions. As stewards of the membership’s trust, the Board oversees the organization’s governance. The Board is accountable to the membership.

Board decisions are guided by our Mission, Governance Policy and Strategic Framework.

Our Board Members

Shakya Abeywickrama

Shakya Abeywickrama Board Member

Shakya Abeywickrama was born on the island of Sri Lanka and moved to Saskatoon with her family 10 years ago. She attained her Bachelors of Commerce degree in Marketing from the University of Saskatchewan in 2014. Shakya has over 5 years of experience in her current position as the Director of Growth for Vendasta, including digital service development with a focus in customer/user acquisition, growth and retention. She also served as a Board Member for the Sri Lanka Association of Saskatoon this past year. Moving to Canada at the age of 19, Shakya realizes how important it was for her and her family to have a great support system. She is thankful for her education, lifelong friends and growth in her career as an immigrant woman. Saskatoon is home to her and she believes now is the time to give back to this community. Saskatoon Open Door Society’s vision and mission aligns with Shakya’s passion to help newcomers make Saskatoon home.

Marvin Ankrah

Marvin Ankrah Board Member

Marvin Ankrah, from Ghana, completed his BA degree in Political Science and History at the University of Ghana in 1999. He obtained his MA in Political Science and Sociology in 2004 under the auspices of the Global Studies Program (GSP), which involved the Universities of Freiburg (Germany), Kwazulu Natal (South Africa) and Jawaharlal Nehru (India).  Further, he holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Freiburg (2013), specializing in Conflict Resolution, Third World Politics, Regionalism and Integration in Africa. He has two publications to his credit, Conflict Resolution in Africa – The Case of the Organization of African Unity (2004) and Regionalism and Political Instability in West Africa – Developments, Challenges and Prospects (2013). He has served as a teaching assistant (University of Kwazulu Natal, 2002), researcher (Centre for African and Asian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru, 2003) and a sessional lecturer (Department of Political Studies, University of Saskatchewan, 2017). He is currently the Shelter Case Manager at Lighthouse Supported Living in Saskatoon.

Peta Bonham-Smith

Peta Bonham-Smith Board Member

Peta Bonham-Smith is the Dean of the College of Arts & Science and a Professor of Biology at the University of Saskatchewan. Peta came to Canada from the UK in 1981 to attend graduate school at the University of Calgary. She arrived in Saskatoon with her young family in 1992 and joined the Department of Biology at USask in 1994. Prior to holding her current role as Dean she was Vice Dean, Science for five years, and prior to that, Head of the Department of Biology for two years. During this time, she also sat on the board of the Saskatchewan Research Council; she chaired the Governance and Nominations Committee, and served as Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for four years, prior to being Interim Chair for approximately two years. While bringing up a young family in Saskatoon, Peta was involved in community, city-wide and provincial soccer as a player and coach as well as a member of the board for both the Lakewood Zone and Saskatoon Youth Soccer. Peta looks forward to making a significant contribution to the vision of SODS, to enable all newcomers to feel welcome and encouraged to participate in their new economic, social, intellectual and cultural life.

Kiela Caudillo

Kiela Caudillo Board Member

Kiela Caudillo serves on the SODS Board of Directors because she has a passion for community service and believes that her international experience and communications skills are of help. Originally from Mexico, Kiela came to Saskatoon 8 years ago seeking a second Master’s degree in Plant Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan. Kiela worked with the U of S as a Research Assistant, International Student Recruitment Officer and currently as the International Partnerships Specialist for the region of the Americas and Oceania. She is also a multi-entrepreneur, has co-founded three small business in Saskatoon in diverse sectors - wholesale, family entertainment and food preparation. She participates in multiple community events for profit and non-profit organizations and several fundraising initiatives. She has made diverse contributions to those events, from volunteering, planning, and managing volunteers to performing and MCing. Kiela believes it is a necessity to help and support her community in every way she can, no matter how small, from accompanying her elderly friends to pick up their groceries to making reusable face masks.

Jeremy Morgan

Jeremy Morgan Board Member

Jeremy Morgan has been actively involved with the cultural communities in Saskatchewan for 30 years as founding CEO of Wanuskewin Heritage Park; CEO of the Saskatchewan Arts Board; Executive Director of the MacKenzie Art Gallery; and, currently, Managing Director of the University of Saskatchewan Art Galleries. Mr. Morgan has served as a member of various volunteer boards and committees, including the Citizen’s Advisory Council for the Province’s Centennial and Chair of both the Minister’s Heritage Council and the Saskatchewan Tourism Authority. He is a recipient of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal and the Centennial Medal, a lifetime membership in the Museums Association of Saskatchewan, a Premier’s Public Service Award and the Mayor of Regina’s 2014 Business and the Arts award for Management Excellence and Service. He served as a Diefenbaker Policy Fellow at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy and is currently chair of the City of Saskatoon’s Public Art Advisory Committee.

Amjad Murabit

Amjad Murabit President

Amjad Murabit is a lawyer with the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission. Amjad's parents immigrated to Canada from Libya and raised him and his ten siblings in Saskatoon. Prior to graduating from the University of Saskatchewan College of Law in 2016, Amjad completed a Master's degree in Sociology. Amjad is a long-time volunteer in the Saskatoon community. He is a member of the Kinsmen Club of Saskatoon and the Canadian Bar Association BarNotes editorial board and regularly volunteers with Pro Bono Law Saskatchewan and the Children's Wish Foundation. Amjad is enthusiastic about Saskatoon Open Door Society's mission and believes that people can do great things if they are supported, empowered and given the proper tools to succeed. Amjad is eager to contribute as a member of Saskatoon Open Door Society's Board of Directors and hopes that, through his work, he can positively influence the lives of many newcomers to Saskatoon. 

Athanasia Perdikaris

Athanasia Perdikaris Secretary

Athanasia Perdikaris holds two Bachelor's degrees from the University of Saskatchewan (U of S), in History and Education. Recently she has applied to complete a Master's for the Department of Educational Foundations with a primary focus on the inclusivity of the public education sector. She has been both an employee and a student at the U of S and has obtained a well-rounded experience, attributing broad depths of understanding and keen interests in knowledge acquisition. She was born and raised in Saskatchewan, living in various rural towns across the province. Growing up with dual ancestry, she was immersed in two varying backgrounds and was influenced by her family's experience in rural communities. This provided her with an understanding of one’s role within society and coinciding personal and public identities that greatly shape the way in which we view our local communities and subsequently national inclusivity.

Patricia Prowse

Patricia Prowse Board Member

Patricia Prowse is the Associate Director of the Saskatchewan Educational Leadership Unit, College of Education, University of Saskatchewan. During her educational career, Patricia was a teacher, vice principal, principal, and superintendent of education for Saskatoon Public Schools. As a superintendent of education, Patricia had strategic responsibility for First Nations, Inuit and Métis Education; Safe, Caring and Accepting Schools; and English as an Additional Language (EAL). She was part of the interagency team that established the Settlement Support Worker in Schools (SSWIS) program and the development of a supporting MOU. Patricia has received provincial and national recognition for her educational leadership. Her commitment to community partnerships and interagency cooperation was acknowledged in 2013 when she received the YWCA Women of Distinction Leadership and Management Award and the Saskatoon Fire and Protective Services’ Shield Award for community service. 

Zehra Rizvi

Zehra Rizvi Board Member

Zehra Rizvi is Pakistani-Canadian and immigrated as a child to rural Saskatchewan.  She obtained a BA in International Studies from the University of Saskatchewan and an MSc in Integrated Water Resource Management from McGill University.  She currently works at Plan International, an international development organization committed to gender equality.  She is an avid traveler and photographer.  Zehra has volunteered with the Youth Study Group program and English conversational circles for adults.  She hopes her contribution helps newcomers in Saskatoon feel empowered to realize their dreams, particularly women who face greater challenges in their new homeland.

Rokhan Sarwar

Rokhan Sarwar Vice President

Rokhan Sarwar  holds two Bachelor's degrees in Economics and Business from the University of Saskatchewan, and is currently enrolled in the Business Administration Master's Program at the Edwards School of Business. Rokhan has an extensive background in Management, and he loves to serve others and as such, joined the Saskatoon Open Door Society Board, to offer his expertise and to help others. He has a strong knowledge of business environments, current technology, leadership and finance.

Abid Sherali

Abid Sherali Treasurer

Abid Sherali holds a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Finance and also completed his Diploma in Business Management. He has been working for Scotiabank for over eight years and is currently the Branch Manager at a local branch in Saskatoon. He moved to Saskatoon in 2011 from Toronto, lived and travelled in various rural communities across Saskatchewan, and last year relocated back to Saskatoon.  Abid truly understands the struggles newcomers face when they land in Canada as he, his family and his parents have gone through the same struggles. Abid would like to serve and help community members, especially newcomers, to settle as smoothly as possible, and guide them with his resources.

Abid has been involved in many newcomer initiatives in Prince Albert, including the Prince Albert Muslim Association, and has also volunteered with many organizations to help newcomers. Abid and his wife are very passionate about helping newcomers and serving the community, as they understand the struggles of newcomers and are in a position to guide them. Abid’s skill set and experience include proven management and leadership, human resources and people management, customer service, change management, knowledge of the Canadian banking system and organizing major events.

Brooke Trippel

Brooke Trippel Board Member

Brooke Trippel's passion is people. After completing her BA in Sociology, she continued to be fascinated by the effect culture and autonomy have on a person's overall happiness and success. With this in mind, it seemed only fitting for her to pursue this passion with a degree in Human Resources from the Edwards School of Business. In her current role as a Senior HR Business Partner at the tech company 1Password, she is able to play a part in helping to shape an inclusive and inspiring environment for employees today. When she is not working, she enjoys taking in live music, attending fitness classes, and most of all travelling to new countries to explore culture, food and fun.