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Leadership Team

Executive Leadership

Medora Uppal, Chief Executive Officer

Medora Uppal (she/her) has 20 years of experience in the non-profit sector supporting women and families through a feminist, intersectional, human rights based framework. Her history of work focuses on building quality programs, strengthening organizational capacity, creating meaningful community engagement, and addressing social justice issues. Medora has a history of advancing housing solutions for women, children and families by providing leadership in the development, implementation and oversight of new and innovative service models. Medora has been a leader in the community in working to end violence against women and children. She plays an active leadership role at community planning tables across a variety of sectors including housing, violence against women, early years planning and health.

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext.101

Sarah Ernest, Vice President, Philanthropy & Communications

Sarah Ernest (she/her) is a highly skilled and enthusiastic fundraising professional specialized in raising funds and awareness within the YWCA movement. Sarah brings over 10 years’ experience in development and communications and has exceeded all annual and capital campaign goals within her portfolio. Sarah joins YWCA Hamilton from her previous role as Director of Philanthropy at YWCA Silicon Valley in San Jose, California where she led a $3M campaign in a competitive Bay Area market. Prior to working in the United States, Sarah provided leadership to a $9M capital campaign for the YMCA of Greater Halifax/Dartmouth and the annual campaign for YWCA Halifax in Nova Scotia. She is known for her creativity and focused efforts in curating a culture of philanthropy.

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 107

Sandra Parker, Director of Child, Youth & Developmental Services

Sandra Parker (she/her) has been working in Hamilton since 2014.  Prior to joining YWCA Hamilton as the Director of Child & Youth Services, Sandra devoted her career to supporting the inclusion of children with special needs in Hamilton’s early year’s system.  Sandra is a strong believer in creating inclusive and equitable opportunities for children and youth in our diverse community and works hard to strengthen YWCA’s portfolio on youth engagement and service provision.

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 163

Maisie Raymond-Brown, Director of Employment and Training Services

Maisie Raymond-Brown (she/her) has been part of the YWCA movement for over 17 years, first in Toronto and then in Hamilton. Maisie began her journey as a YWCA Business Administrator, then taking on the position of Manager in 2002, and becoming the Director of Employment and Training Services in 2015. Maisie is passionate about advancing women’s economic security and has a MBA degree in Business Administration and Management from Nova Southeastern University, as well as a Bachelor’s Degree from The University of the West Indies, Mona.

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 151

Amy Deschamps, Director of Housing and Gender Based-Violence Support Services

Amy Deschamps (she/ her) has close to 20 years of experience working within the gender based violence and homelessness sectors and applies an intersectional, harm reduction lens in supporting and amplifying the needs of marginalized individuals experiencing violence and homelessness.  She has centred her career around promoting inclusivity within the Gender Based Violence sector while working to enhance access and service for traditionally underserved populations.  Amy has a passion for enhancing wellness, resilience and creating a culture community care within frontline staff teams.  Bridging her direct service knowledge, with her progressive leadership experience, strengthens Amy’s focus on development and capacity building opportunities for frontline teams in the areas of anti-racism/anti oppression, truth and reconciliation, trauma informed care and risk assessment.

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 112

Melissa Ramos, Director of Human Resources

Melissa Ramos (she/her) joined YWCA Hamilton on March of 2022 and since then, her commitment to working hard to help YWCA Hamilton overcome challenges and improve our human resource services has been consistent. Melissa has fully embraced the organizations values and she understands the support our clients need and how to assist our employees to be successful and rewarded in their work.  Before coming to YWCA Hamilton Melissa worked in a diversity of Industries such as Manufacturing, Retail and Healthcare.  Melissa is passionate about helping people thrive in organizations to reach their full potential, and her education and experience in Human Resources reflect that.  She holds a Bachelor’s in Organizational Psychology, a Certification in Human Resources Management and she is a Certified Human Resources Professional.

Contact: 905.522.9922 ext. 127

Senior Leadership

Ala Mohamed, Manager, Children’s Services

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 129

April Turner, Manager, Housing and Gender Based-Violence Support Services

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 117

Carol Fraser, Community Supports Manager, Developmental Services

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 153

Carol Martin, Manager, Employment and Training Services – Skilled Trades

Contact: (289) 527-6132

Daniella Bozur, Manager, Family Access Services

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 167

Deborah Schwientek, Manager, Employment and Training Services

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 144

Jen Perkins, Manager, Developmental Services

Contact: (905) 389-9091 ext. 507

Kris Rose, Accounting Manager

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 125

Lori Dawson, Manager, Building Operations

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 182

Natalie Gonsalves, Marketing Officer

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 174

Neanette Atanas, Senior Analyst, Programs & Training

Contact: (905) 522-9922 x 120

Rachelle Ingrao, Manager, Health and Wellness Programs

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 327

Sara Charters, Philanthropy Officer

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 315

Sarah Borde, Manager, Capital Projects

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 187

Shannon Cummings, Senior Manager, Centre of Innovation

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 176

Tehreem Zafar, Manager, Immigrant and Settlement Services

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 335

Tracey Helwig, Manager, Developmental Services

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 153

Violetta Nikolskaya, Senior Program Analyst

Contact: (905) 522-9922 ext. 320

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