Board of Directors

Meet our Board of Directors

CUA is a local, community-based banking institution that operates with the best interests of its members, community and environment in mind. The Board of Directors provides strategic oversight and direction to the organization. The following individuals make up the current CUA Board:

Kurt Bulger – Chair of Board

Kurt Bulger is the joint owner of Jennifer’s of Nova Scotia, a local shop specializing in handcrafted works by Atlantic Canadians. He started at Jennifer’s of Nova Scotia 28 years ago, became Store Manager in 1987 and has been joint owner since 2005.

Kurt has been actively involved with the Spring Garden Area Business Association for over 25 years and has served as the Board Chair. Kurt puts enthusiasm and effort into all his endeavours. He has a strong work ethic as well as a keen interest in community issues.

Kurt resides in Halifax and is the father of two lovely daughters.

He joined the CUA Board in 2007, and is currently Chair of the Board and member of the Executive Committee.

Sean O'Connor – Vice Chair of Board

Sean O'Connor is a professional Accountant with experience in both the public and private sectors. Currently, he is Chair of the Board of the Atlantic Lottery Corporation. He also sits on the Board of Directors and is Chair of the Finance Committee for Efficiency Nova Scotia.

Sean holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Dalhousie University and completed studies with the Institute of Corporate Directors Designation Program at University of Calgary.  

Prior to his start as an entrepreneur in 2008, Sean was VP of Business Development for the Municipal Group of Companies for five years. He has been involved in a number of charitable activities over the years, including having served on the Board of Chamber of Commerce for six years.  

Sean joined the CUA Board in November 2015, and is currently the Vice Chair of the Board as well as the Chair of the Executive Committee.

Donna Harding – Chair, Audit Committee

Donna is a visionary thinker who has tremendous passion for people, homes and real estate. Her quest for challenge led her on her journey from Senior Naval Officer, to successful real estate Broker.

Donna began her career in the Canadian Navy and filled many interesting leadership positions.  Her love for real estate was a life-long one and later, her tenacity and thirst for professional knowledge, along with her client-care focus, earned her immediate success as her company grew from a “one-lady” Team to a highly successful, and well-respected Real Estate Brokerage in only 4 years.

Donna’s energy thrives off the success of others so she has added teaching, coaching and mentoring to her portfolio.  Donna’s love of people also extends to the many charities she supports including Parkinson’s, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, 100 Women Who Care and the IWK. 

Donna’s Brokerage is also a proud member of the BBB and the I Love local initiative in Halifax and she sits on the REIC and CUA, Board of Directors. As a wife and mother of 2 boys, Donna enjoys spending quality time with her family whether on the boat, or at the cottage.

Donna joined the CUA Board in 2016, and is currently the Chair of the Audit Committee, as well as a member of the Executive Committee.

Bruce Frazee – Chair, Credit Committee

Bruce has been a member of CUA since 1977. He is a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) and a graduate of Saint Mary’s University. As a CMA, Bruce is a financial and strategic management professional. He was a federal public servant for over 32 years, before retiring in 2012, and spent most of that time with what is now Human Resources and Skills Development Canada.

He has developed skills in the area of finance, planning and human resources.

Bruce joined the CUA Board in 1991, and is currently the Chair of the Credit Committee, as well as a member of the Executive Committee.

Karen Miner – Chair, Governance & Community Impact Committee

Karen Miner is a proud CUA member with the right experience and expertise to be a strong ambassador for the credit union's diverse membership. Karen is known for her values-based approach, passion for co-operatives, management experience, broad perspective, and leadership qualities.

Karen's career has focused on governance, strategy, business management, and sustainability within co-operatives, non-profits, for-profit organizations, and government. In her current role as Managing Director of graduate level Co-operative Management Education at Saint Mary's University, Karen works with co-operative and credit union professionals from around the world.

Other co-operative activities have included 6 years on the Board of Directors of Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC), advisory panels for The Co-operators and Vancity Credit Union, and 3 years on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Co-operative Association (CCA). Karen has served as a director of various non-profit boards, including Fairtrade Canada and the Nova Scotia Nature Trust.

Karen lives in Dartmouth with her husband Dan, daughter Isabel and son Luke.

Karen joined the CUA Board in 2014, and is currently the Chair of the Governance & Community Impact Committee, as well as a member of the Executive Committee.

Louise Adongo

Louise Adongo is Manager of Policy and Corporate Supports at Housing NS. Unafraid to try doing old things differently, Louise has worked on projects in program development for public and not-for-profit sectors in Nova Scotia and parts of Africa. During her first community development experience, she discovered her passion for social justice and equitable resource use. She has since worked in various research, policy and evaluation roles in provincial government for close to a decade.

Louise brings multi-disciplinary interests and a solid understanding of the roles different sectors play in contributing to sustainable, resilient and vibrant communities. An avid reader, traveller and gardener, Louise holds graduate degrees in Biochemistry and Applied Health Services Research. She has a keen interest in supporting communities to better themselves, volunteering as a Board member at the Health Association of African Canadians, with the Halifax Local Immigrant Partnership (HLIP) and as a co-founder and Board Secretary for the Freetown Initiative.

Louise joined the CUA Board in 2015, and is a member of both the Credit Committee and the Governance & Community Impact Committee

Jay Aird

Jay Aird's background and areas of expertise are information technology and business development.

As the Vice-President of Innovation with a technology company, Jay has significant experience raising equity and negotiating debt financing to support the growth of Nova Scotia companies for international markets.  These experiences have provided him the opportunity to develop expert skills in areas of operations, finance and strategy, and will enable him to add value as a director in support of CUA’s future success.

Jay is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario and has a Level 3 in the Certified Financial Advisor designation.  As a local entrepreneur, he understands the importance of responsible and sustainable growth, and his creative yet practical approach can assist CUA in building its membership and community.  Jay is excited for the opportunity to be part of guiding a cooperative model that invests in a community that he now call home with his wife and two young sons.

Jay joined the CUA Board in 2017 and is a member of the Audit Committee.

Roberta Dexter

Roberta Dexter is a small business owner and long-term CUA customer as well as a former employee.  She owns a conference management company called Plan Ahead Events and sits on the Board of Destination Halifax where she Chairs the Governance Committee.  She has been on the Board of Meeting Professionals International, having served two terms as Chapter President as well as roles in Board Administration, Education and Finance. 

She knows the credit union system very well having worked directly with the President’s office for the five years she spent at CUA.  She managed the Board of Directors during that time acting as Board Secretary and completed studies in Board Governance at Brown School of Governance in Toronto. 

Roberta has a Business Degree with a concentration in finance as well as having been through countless financial statement and business objective reviews for CUA.  She understands how all the partnerships work throughout the system and she believes she has a strong contribution to make to CUA.

Roberta joined the CUA Board in 2017 and is a member of the Credit Committee.

Walter Thompson

Walter has been practicing law in Halifax for over 40 years and is a Queen’s Counsel. He serves as a Small Claims Court Adjudicator, a member of the Nova Scotia Securities Commission, and on a number of other tribunals.

He has also served many community organizations including the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.

Walter joined the CUA Board in 2000 and is a member of the Audit Committee.

 

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