Catherine Van der Linden
President & Co-Founder
Catherine is an international business development leader. During her 25-plus years of experience she spearheaded successful ventures throughout global markets for multinationals including Kraft General Foods, Unilever and Costco. She defined marketing strategies and developed the North American market for companies with different business models such as franchising, licensing and import/distribution. She created branded and private label programs for suppliers from Europe, the US, Australia and Canada. Catherine is a Belgian/ Canadian citizen who speaks 4 languages (English, French, Flemish, and German). She moved to Canada in 1991 and embraced the challenge of developing new markets and living in a different country. Almost all ventures she has focussed on, both professionally and philanthropically, were start-ups. Passionate about giving back, she applies her entrepreneurial skills towards different causes, mainly in the fields of children’s health and education. Catherine initiated and chaired many fundraisers, holds board positions and has served on the corporate appeal committee for the Montreal Children's Hospital. Catherine has a master’s degree in History of Art and Archeology from Ghent University in Belgium. She is married, has a daughter and three stepdaughters. She loves hiking, history, biographies and history of art and architecture. She is enthralled by developing opportunities, and mentoring. Catherine decided to dedicate more time to Phelps in 2015, when it became clear that its potential for exponential growth required her full commitment.
Lisa Smith, a graduate of Bishop’s University, is a resident of Stanstead East, where she lives with her husband and numerous furry pets. Their three children have grown and moved away from home to pursue careers and studies across Canada. After an eighteen year career at North Country Union High School in Newport, VT, Lisa accepted a post at Stanstead College. Lisa is Head of the Math and Science Department and for the past five years, has also been the Coordinator of the Learning Resource Centre.
Currently in her 32nd year of teaching, Mrs. Smith love sports, the outdoors, cooking, crafts and being involved in the community. Many years coaching soccer, hockey, baseball and golf, as well as being involved in the development of the Phelps Helps program, keep her very busy when she is not teaching.
Treasurer & Co-Founder
Jeanie Markwick was born and raised in Michigan where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Michigan too long ago to admit. Her unconventional path started on the trading floor of the Chicago Board Options Exchange and led to New York, where she acted as an options specialist on the floors of the NYSE and the Amex, later moving to institutional equity trading at Kidder Peabody and Paine Webber. Marriage brought her to Canada in 1996 where she held senior institutional equity trading and management positions at UBS and Scotia Capital until retiring in 2009 to seek new pursuits. After the chance meeting with Catherine Van der Linden at the 2011 opening of the Pat Burns Arena in Stanstead, the seed was planted for what today has proudly grown to become Phelps Aide Phelps Help. With the belief that one is never too old to learn something new, she returned to the workforce full time in 2015 to become the V.P. of Operations for a small investment advisory firm in Montreal, allowing her to wear many different hats. As unique and exciting as she found her first career and as interesting as she finds her new career, Phelps remains her passion, coupled with a love for the local community in which she has been a part-time resident for 21 years. Jeanie currently divides her time between Montreal and the Townships with her husband, Eric and their furry sons, Zeppelin and T.C.
Stanstead Town Councillor, Director Loisir Stanstead, & Local Business Owner (GranQuartz)
AJ Bedard was born and raised in the heart of Stanstead. In his teenage years, he started volunteering with his grand-parents and the Stanstead Recreation Association, then as the treasurer, and two years later becoming the youngest President of the organisation and still to this day in function. AJ graduated in Graphic Design and Business Administration. Today, he is a Product and Marketing Manager in the largest tool and equipment distribution company in the Natural Stone industry in North America, GranQuartz and a Councillor of the Town of Stanstead.
He has participated in numerous projects, fundraisers and organisations which has enabled him to develop strong ties within his community.
Katie grew up in the Eastern Townships and is a proud alumnus of Alexander Galt Regional High School. After completing her BA in Political Science at Carleton University, Katie discovered her passion for teaching and never looked back. She became ESL-certified while working with Spanish-speaking migrants in the United States, and she proceeded to parlay her love of travel and education by taking on teaching opportunities in Ghana, China, and South Korea. Returning to Canada in 2010, she obtained her B. Ed. from the University of Ottawa before moving to the Stanstead area with her husband. Katie was instrumental in the establishment of Phelps, and under her guidance, the program has grown from a single program to 7 diverse educational offerings. “As an educator, working at Phelps is a dream come true. I have the opportunity to support a student through every step of their education and watch the evolution of the whole child. That is what makes being a part of Phelps truly special”.
Principal of Sunnyside Elementary
Steven Weary attended high school in St. Kitts, West Indies, Lachute, Quebec and Devon, England. He earned degrees from the University of Toronto, Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, and Bishop's University. Steve has spent 25 years working for the ETSB and 15 years as a principal. He is keen on outdoor sports and loves to travel and experience other cultures. Steve strongly supports Phelps: "I firmly believe in the value of education and I encourage anyone who helps students to stay in school until they graduate."
Vice-Principal Cycle 2 of Alexander Galt Regional High School
Tara McCully is the vice principal Cycle 2 of Alexander Galt Regional High School and a proud member of Phelps.