Leadership & Staff

Zajac Ranch for Children

Zajac Ranch Society Board of Directors

Matt Carver


Tom Wong (Chairman, Treasurer)

TCW Associates Ltd. (director since June 2018)

Sheila Smith

Retired Administrator

Zajac Ranch for Children

The Mel Jr. & Marty Zajac Foundation Board of Directors

Mel Zajac (Chairman) 

Founder, The Mel Jr. & Marty Zajac Foundation (director since 1997)

 Corinne Zajac

Corinne Zajac & Associates

Jeffrey Uppal

President & Founder, Velox Partnerships (director since 2014)

Howard A. Blank

President & CEO, Point Blank Entertainment (director since 2018)

Tom Wong

TCW Associates Ltd (director since 2012)

Rick Bourne

President, Langara Fishing Adventures (director since 2019)

Bradley Scharfe

President, Co-Chairman & CEO, Scharfe Group of Companies (director since 2019)

Wendy Hartley

Principal, Hartley PR (director since 2019)

Gino Crudo

Owner & Operator, Paramount Projects General Contractors

Stephen Jagger

Co-Founder, addy Technology Corp.

Alexandria Lee

General Manager, Cactus Club Café

Lisa Williamson

Marketing & Communications Manager, Canadian Association
of Public Schools - International

Zajac Ranch for Children

The Mel Jr. & Marty Zajac Foundation Advisory Board

David Aisenstat

President & CEO, Keg Restaurants Ltd

John Devita

President, CT Control Temp

Honourable John Reynolds, P.C.

Senior Strategic Advisor, McMillan LLP

Zajac Ranch for Children

Ranch & Foundation Staff

Mel Zajac, Chairman

Mel’s present project, The Zajac Ranch for Children, is his most ambitious project yet. Mel’s drive, determination and devotion to his dream of creating a camp for children who otherwise would never have the opportunity to go to camp has become a reality. View a complete biography of Mel Zajac.

Carmen Zajac, President

Carmen Zajac began her career in the hospitality industry at the Pacific Palisades Hotel.  She went on to the realm of commercial real estate and property management and moved to Arizona, where she attained her Real Estate License as well as her Commercial Pilot’s License. 

In 1986 and 1987, Carmen’s two brothers, Mel Jr. and Marty, tragically passed away in separate sporting accidents.  To honour their memories and create a family legacy of caring in our province her father, Mel Zajac Sr., founded the Mel Jr. & Marty Zajac Foundation.  The Zajac Foundation is committed to supporting seniors, children, and persons with special needs through innovative community projects focused on developing life long skills and independence.

For over 20 years, Carmen has served as the President of the Zajac Foundation.  She works closely with her father in the management of their various community initiatives, such as the Zajac Norgate House and the Zajac Ranch for Children.  Part of Carmen’s role as President is to meet with government officials, voluntary health organizations, corporations and service groups to ensure the development of the Zajac Ranch, which provides a unique camping opportunity for children with life threatening and chronic illnesses and disabilities.

Carmen lives in North Vancouver with her husband and two sons.

Graham George, CPA, CGA


Graham earned his accounting designation in 2008. Upon completing his academic goals, Graham volunteered for many events and finance-related positions in the non-profit sector in his spare time. He jumped at the opportunity to gain employment in a charity in 2015 and has enjoyed working in the sector ever since. Graham enjoys working with the Zajac Ranch because of the positive and inspirational experiences that children have at the Ranch. Aside from accounting, Graham enjoys the outdoors and regularly competes in running races (10km to full marathons).

Guy Paetkau, bCRE

Office Supervisor & Staff Liaison

Guy’s background includes Database Management, Donor Relations, Payroll, Accounting and Office Management. His passion and dedication for non-profit comes from making a difference in peoples’ lives. Working and being around children is a natural fit which stems from a large extended family of all ages.

Justin Mercier

Sales & Registration Coordinator

Justin grew up on a Ranch in Kamloops B.C. and moved to Vancouver in 2016. He has a background in Hospitality and has many years of experience coaching horseback riding for children. He spent his childhood volunteering at a therapeutic riding club and has always dreamed of working in the non-profit sector.

Kathryn Slemko, M.A.

Executive Director of Development

As the new Executive Director of Development for The Zajac Foundation and the Zajac Ranch, Kathryn Slemko looks forward to building meaningful relationships and strategic partnerships. With a Master's degree in the Arts as well as a Marketing and Communications Diploma, Kathryn takes pride in helping people connect their dreams with causes that are meaningful to them. Her time in fundraising has spanned many sectors, from the non-profit Arts to educational institutions. Philanthropy has always been a significant part of Kathryn’s life, both personally and professionally, and she takes great pride in collaborating within the community to establish innovative projects and campaigns to support those around her and make a positive difference in the world.

  Mark Wilkins

  Camp Director

 Mark went to College for Child and Youth Work. Mark began working with kids in the pools teaching swimming lessons and being a lifeguard and began to work at a summer camp in Ontario every summer during his college career. Mark fell in love with camp and what camp represented, that he took his skills doing a summer camp exchange in Cuba, where he taught how summer camp is ran in Canada. He has as well worked in China, and worked on Cruise Ships working for camps on board. Mark has been working for the School Board in Ontario working with many students with medical and developmental diagnosis, and with schools being closed during the summer, Mark would be working for many different summer camps all over Ontario in leadership positions. Mark is very excited to be part of Zajac Ranch for Children, and to help show what summer camp is all about.