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NEWS RELEASE · 13th April 2012
UNBC’s Community Development Institute (CDI) has been there when communities have needed them, and the CDI wants it to stay that way. To ensure that the CDI remains vital and sustainable for the future, the Institute will expand its vision and capacity, and has hired Marleen Morris as Associate Director to lead that process.

Marleen brings to the CDI over 30 years experience in executive and senior management positions in the health, housing, and education sectors. She has also been appointed to several senior governance positions. Organizations she has been involved with include BC Housing, the Vancouver/Richmond Health Board (Vancouver Coastal Health), St. James Community Service Society, BC Winter Games, Vancouver City Planning Commission, United Way of the Lower Mainland, and the North Vancouver Chamber of Commerce. Most recently, Marleen served as President of Marleen Morris & Associates, where she worked in communities across BC helping organizations in the public, business, and non-profit sectors develop strategies for revitalization and change.

“Marleen’s experience leading transformation and revitalization processes will benefit both the CDI and the communities we serve,” said Greg Halseth, Director of the Community Development Institute. “The work she has done in strategic and operational planning, governance, community-based research, and outreach, combined with her passion and commitment to rural and small town communities, makes her a strong addition to the CDI team.”

The Community Development Institute has a broad mandate that encompasses all of the elements involved in economic and community development and transformation. Since 2003, the CDI has been a resource and partner to northern BC communities seeking to build a secure and prosperous long-term future. The CDI combines on-the-ground experience with research knowledge, information, and analysis from other regions in BC, Canada, and around the world to help communities develop practical strategies for revitalization and diversification.

“I am very excited and proud to be working with the Community Development Institute and to lead this process of expansion and revitalization,” said Morris, who herself has conducted research on regional economic development. “The CDI has built a reputation for helping communities prosper and they are provincially, nationally, and internationally recognized for this work. This is a wonderful foundation on which to build.”