Board of Directors

Hodan A. Mohamed is a diaspora Somali Canadian, a design thinking strategist with a focus on employment equity, public policy, organizational change, diversity and inclusion. She has a Master’s degree in Leadership, Higher Learning and Community Development from the University of Toronto. Hodan has over 10 years of professional experience theorizing, developing, discussing and implementing diversity and inclusion, with specific focus on anti Black racism and Islamophobia. This encompasses providing strategic advice to government and non-profit on both implicit and explicit biases, and the impact of systematic barriers, while sharing practical and actionable initiatives towards institutional change.

Faduma Awow

Vice-Chair

Faduma Mohamed is an Executive Director of Labour Community Service, a project of Toronto and York Region Labour Council in partnership with the United Way of Greater Toronto. Faduma’s prior positions include serving as Executive Director of the Somali Youth Association of Toronto, a Settlement Coordinator with the Rexdale Women’s Centre, a Youth Settlement Worker with CultureLink and a Youth Outreach Worker with the African Youth Settlement and Development Project. She has also served on the DiverseCity Steering Committee, the Youth Challenge Fund Board and the Family Service Toronto Board. Faduma was a member of the Strong Neighbourhood Task Force of the United Way Toronto and the City Summit Alliance, the Mayor’s Roundtable for Children, Youth and Education, the Human Service Planning Coalition of York Region and the United Way of York Region’s LEAD Advisory Committee. Faduma was a member of the city Toronto’s “Confronting Anti-Black Racism” Partnership Accountable Circle. Faduma is a vice-chair and founding member of Positive Change Toronto Initiative, an organization that works to end youth violence by advocating, researching, educating, focusing on family, education, neighborhoods, criminal system and policing, employment, and mental health. In 2004, Faduma was a recipient of the Person’s Day Award from the City of Toronto which honours women who have made significant contributions to society, and advanced the standing of women in Toronto. Faduma holds a Master of Science Degree in Agriculture from the Justus Liepig University in Germany. Additionally, she holds a Management Certificate from York University’s Schulich School of Business and is a graduate of the Leaders for the Change program from the Maytree Foundation. She has also taken Anti-Racism training from the Toronto District School Board and Political Leadership training from the Canadian Centre for Political Leadership.

Jillian Ricketts is a Business Analyst at the City of Toronto, Toronto Buildings Division and brings over 15 years of public administration and social services experience working with the City of Toronto and the nonprofit sector.  In her role as business analyst, Jillian conducts research required to support business process improvements by implementing technology-based or business process solutions that are aligned with the city’s Strategic Action Plan. Prior to joining the City of Toronto Buildings Division, Jillian was a caseworker for Toronto Employment and Social Services. In this role, Jillian managed a number of initiatives including: conducting a comprehensive review of customer service practices at York Humber Employment and Social Service office. This resulted in an authored report entitled, Placed Based Approach to Delivering Client Centered Customer Service that aimed to support service delivery and identify program impacts to Ontario Work (OW) clients. Jillian also managed the training and implementation of OW new technology systems (SAMS) for the York Humber office and supervised program initiatives for single parents under the age of 18 through the Learning, Earning and Parenting program (LEAP). Jillian has also spent time working in the non-profit sector at Community Microskills Development Centre as a Youth Counselor in the Rexdale area and an employment counselor for women. Jillian’s education includes, a Master’s Degree in Public Policy, Administration, and Law (MPPAL) from York University; Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration and Governance from Ryerson University; and Diploma in Social Service Worker from Humber College.

Ayaan Warsame currently works in the finance sector while a student at York University studying International Development. Obtaining her Social Service Worker Diploma at Humber college, she also has many years of experience in a variety of sectors including social services, communication, humanitarian, and events management. Born and raised in Canada, Ayaan began an adventure to Somalia in 2013, a unique opportunity to discover her homeland which quickly turned into her home for almost 4 years. While in Somalia, Ayaan found her passion working with Somali youths and felt her skills and experiences are best utilized for the empowerment of youth through preventive measures such as employment and mentoring.

Habiba is a Somali-Canadian activist for social justice for all, on black issues and specifically youth violence in the Somali community. She advocates for systemic change within Canadian society in general and within the system in particular. Habiba holds double degrees from Somali National University,and  York University, as well as a Master's degree from Vanderbilt University in the USA. She is now retired after working 24 years as a registered social worker at Family Service Toronto. Habiba is one of the founding members of Positive Change Toronto Initiative since 2012; and still volunteering to end gun violence among the community. Habiba was the captain of the Somali women National basketball players for7 years and up until now sport is part of her leisure activities.

Marian Farah is a recent graduate from the Ted Rogers School of Business Management at
Ryerson University, specializing in Human Resource with a minor in Professional Business
Communications. Currently, she is working as a Lab Technician at Newlife Fertility Center
aiding couples seeking fertility treatment. With her degrees completed, Marian is currently
studying for the LSAT with plans of attending law school in the 2022 cycle.

Issaq Ahmed is a first generation Somali-Ethiopian Canadian and holds a bachelor’s degree with a major in Criminology and a minor in Politics and Governance.  His passion lies in community service and development on many levels, including through grassroots work; and in the non-profit and social sectors. With 7 years of experience in this area, Issaq utilizes creativity to drive his work, where notable contributions have been shown in the form of a resident-led documentary project; the largest mural project in Scarborough located on the side of the 14-story high building; and a capital infrastructure project to renovate the exterior and interior residential space.

Address: 222 Dixon Rd, 301, Toronto, ON M9P 3S5

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