Board of Directors

Laura Thurnheer, President

Associate Dean – Science, Technology, Health & Social Development, B.Comm., MBA, CPHR

Professional & Community Development:
Laura is currently an Associate Dean – School of Business at Okanagan College. In this administrative role, she works with 13 departments in the Science and Technology areas providing both faculty and student support.

Previous to this role, Laura was with the Okanagan School of Business at Okanagan College for 11 years. As a professor, Laura instructed in the Bachelor of Business Administration program for 5 years in the areas of Strategic Management, Human Resources Management and Tourism. From mid-2012 to mid-2018 Laura was the Chair of the Okanagan School of Business providing support to over 60 faculty members and 1500 students.

As an active member of her local business community, she is very aware of the challenges facing businesses today and strives to help new and existing businesses develop and expand. Laura is a Past President of the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce and currently is a Director with the British Columbia Wine Authority and CPHRBC & Yukon.

One of her keen areas of interest is personal development coaching and Laura is fortunate to have many opportunities in the Okanagan to mentor young adults in areas such as effective speaking and competing in business competitions. Laura is married with two children and is happy to be part of an active family life in the Okanagan.

Rob Peter, Past President

Professional & Community Development:
Rob is currently a Marketing/Business Specialist with experience in both consumer packaged goods and community-based activities. He was a Senior Marketing/Business Manager at Sun-Rype Products Ltd. for over 20 years. He was contracted as a Marketing Specialist with the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development with assignments in Central Asia. He has been a Marketing/Business Consultant with the City of Kelowna and the Kelowna International Airport. He also was a past Mentor with the Community Futures Organization.

Rob has served on several community Boards – Past President of the Kelowna Museums Society, Past Chair of the Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame Museum, and a past Executive with Okanagan Sun Football Team.

Reason & Role on the KCR Board:
His interest in serving as a KCR Board member is to be involved in an organization that works at ensuring that all individuals and families in the Kelowna area have resources available to make their lives healthy and productive.

Personal Info:
His personal interests are sports, the outdoors and community involvement.

David Brown, Vice President

Lawyer, Ascent Employment Law Corporation

Professional & Community Development:
David practices as a trial lawyer, with a focus on employment law, human rights law and immigration law.

Personal Info:
Originally from Elkford, British Columbia, David completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Economics at the University of Alberta. During his undergraduate degree, he had the opportunity to participate in a full-year exchange program to the Université Catholique de Lille, in Lille, France. Upon graduation, David worked briefly as a heavy equipment operator in an open-pit coal mine before moving to New Brunswick in 2006. David is an avid outdoorsman and loves hiking, biking, running, camping and snowboarding.

Bill Thompson, Treasurer/Secretary

Manager, Grant Thornton LLP, CPA, CA

Professional & Community Development:
Bill is a Chartered Professional Accountant with experience in working with small business clients, personal tax clients and providing assurance services.

Reason & Role on the KCR Board:
KCR provides an opportunity to be involved with an organization that strives to provide information and services to the people of the Okanagan region with the intent of creating a better community for everyone.

Personal Info:
Born and raised in Saskatchewan, Bill has slowly transitioned westward before settling in Kelowna with his family full-time in 2010. He enjoys spending time with his family, golfing and staying active outdoors.

Michelle Rogers, Director

CEO, Virtually There CFO Services, CPA, CMA


Professional & Community Development:
Chartered Professional Accountant with a focus on strategy and operations, Michelle launched her own business advisory services practice in 2020. Passionate about personal and professional development, she has lead monthly LeanIn meetings and is currently Treasurer on the Female Wave of Change Canada board.

Reason & Role on the KCR Board:
Joining the Board at KCR was a wonderful opportunity for Michelle to contribute to the community through helping KCR realize our vision of creating a community where individuals and families are supported in leading healthy, productive and fulfilling lives.

Personal Info:
Michelle was born in Edmonton, AB, raised in the Lower Mainland and has raised her two grown children in Kelowna. She loves spending time in the outdoors hiking, kayaking, skiing and doing yoga.

Peter Boyd, Director

Owner, Peter’s Your Independent Grocer

Professional & Community Development:
Owner of Peter’s Your Independent Grocer. 27 years in the retail food industry in Kelowna.

Reason & Role on the KCR Board:
I have followed KCR through my years in Kelowna and I am so impressed with the support it provides for our community and being asked to be a Board member is a true honour.

Personal Info:
Peter was born in Whiterock, BC, but moved to Kelowna in 1989. He enjoys golfing, baseball and spending time with his family.

Beth Flynn, Director

Professional and Community Development:
Beth recently retired after 28 years with the BC Ministry of Children and Family Development. Most recently, she was the manager responsible for the area of child welfare in the Central Okanagan region. During her career, she also filled the roles of Adoption Manager, Director of Operations, Community Services Manager responsible for child welfare, child and youth mental health, youth justice, and early childhood development, Youth Services Team Leader, Family Services Team Leader, and Child Protection social worker. She was previously employed as a social worker with the Children’s Aid Society of Ontario.

Reason and Role on KCR Board:
During her career, Beth became aware of KCR Community Resources and to appreciate the agency’s dedication to the betterment of the community. Respecting their mission and their programs, she is honoured to join KCR as a Director.

Personal Info:
Born and raised in Ontario, she completed her education at McMaster University in Hamilton. She relocated to B.C. in 1988 and lived and worked for 8 years in Salmon Arm prior to moving to Kelowna in 1996. Embracing her retirement, she enjoys travelling, camping, hiking, gardening and spending time with her family. Beth is the mother of 2 adult sons. She is also active as a volunteer with St. Andrew’s Anglican Church, The Salvation Army, and the Canadian Mental Health Association.

Gillianne Richards, Director

Professional & Community Development:
Gillianne is a journalist, screenwriter, and producer. She was a regular on CBC’s Daybreak South as an arts and culture commentator as well as a columnist for arts and culture in Okanagan Life Magazine. She now works on various film and television projects and sits on the board of the Arts Council of the Central Okanagan. She also prioritizes the joy of loving and being with her husband and kids.

Reason & Role on the KCR Board:
Gillianne’s role with KCR is to bring experience and considerations for the cultural initiatives and possibilities to be looked at by the board, as well as to help provide feedback on media relations and audience engagement. To be able to volunteer in the community with such an incredible and impactful organization is one of her proudest pursuits to date.

Personal Info:
Gillianne is third generation Okanagan. She graduated from Kelowna Secondary School, then studied in Germany and the University of Victoria before meeting her husband and moving to the United States until their return to Kelowna in 2003. Her first job, at 14, was at Purdy’s Chocolates in Orchard Park Mall, where she got to taste samples as often as she liked. After her departure, they enforced a new limit on how many free chocolates an employee gets to eat in a day.

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