On June 1st, the staff, volunteers and board at Distress Centre Calgary will bid a fond farewell to Executive Director, Joan Roy, as she begins her next adventure on a well-earned retirement.

Joan first joined Distress Centre as a social work student on a 4 month practicum. On June 1, 1992 she was offered a full-time position as a crisis counsellor for the Counselling Program, and the rest is history. For 25 years Joan has held many positions within the agency and has seen it grow from a staff of 15 to 88.

It has been a privilege to work with Joan, as a board member and as Chair. She has accomplished remarkable things during her tenure with Distress Centre, through her quiet and strong leadership. She is humble and swift to give credit to others and has been an inspiration.

Replacing her is Jerilyn Dressler, Director of Operations, who started with Distress Centre as a crisis line volunteer. She rejoined Distress Centre as staff in 2007. She credits Joan for much of her development as a leader within the organization, providing mentorship and encouraging her to pursue her Masters in Social Work with a Leadership in the Human Services specialization.

Jerilyn and Joan have worked very closely together over the past 10 years and Joan is excited to be retiring to B.C. with her partner and leave Distress Centre in the very capable hands of Jerilyn. I wish them both the best of luck in their new endeavours.

Leslie Weekes
Chair, Board of Directors