Renfrew County District School Board Welcomes New and Returning Faces to the Leadership Team

Posted On Friday February 03, 2023

Renfrew County District School Board Welcomes New and Returning Faces to the Leadership Team

February 3, 2023
For Immediate Release

The Renfrew County District School Board (RCDSB) welcomes new members to the Board of Trustees, a new Chair and Vice Chair, as well as new hires to the senior executive team.

The November 15th 2022, inaugural meeting of the Board of Trustees, saw three new trustees sworn in to their roles. David Dobson was elected in the Whitewater Region and Admaston Bromley Townships, Kim Dougherty elected from Arnprior and McNab-Braeside townships, and Jodie Primeau represents the communities of Deep River, Town of Laurentian Hills, and Head Clara and Maria.

Trustees elected Susan Humphries (Renfrew, Horton, and Greater Madawaska) as their new Chair, reprising the role she has held in the past, and Leo Boland (Pembroke) is the new Vice Chair.

“I am thrilled to once again be serving as Chair of the Board, alongside Vice-Chair Leo Boland,” states Susan Humphries, RCDSB Board Chair. “Our Board of Trustees includes both new and familiar faces this term. As advocates for our constituents, all of us are eager to continue with the important work surrounding student achievement. We look forward to working with, and on behalf of, our RCDSB students, staff, and school communities.”

The RCDSB’s Board of Trustees is composed of eight publicly-elected trustees, and two student trustees. Returning Trustees include Mike Guenette for Laurentian Valley and North Algona Wilberforce; David Kaiser for Bonnechere Valley, Killaloe, Hagarty & Richards, Madawaska Valley, Brudenell, Lyndoch and Raglan, and South Algonquin; and Bryon Morris for the Petawawa region. Taylor Novosedlik returns for her last year as Student Trustee from Valour JKL-12 School and Ava Beggs from Madawaska Valley District High School serves her first of two years in the role.

As Members of the Board, Trustees roles are defined in the Education Act. They maintain a strong focus on student achievement, equity and wellbeing. Trustees serve as a link between RCDSB communities and schools to ensure that system-wide policy making continues to meet the diverse needs of all students.

Director of Education, Pino Buffone, announced to staff that effective January 2023, Meredith Caplan Jamieson is taking on the newly created role of Executive Officer of Public Affairs, with oversight of communications, governance and community relations. Beginning this 2022-2023 school year, Director Buffone also welcomed two new Superintendents Jenny Smith and Kristin Riddell to the Executive team.

Meredith Caplan Jamieson brings 25-plus years of experience as a public affairs professional specializing in media, governance, and stakeholder relationship development. She joins the school board directly from the federal government where she served two action packed years as Senior Advisor (Ontario) to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities.

Meredith is known locally for her effectiveness as a Municipal Councillor in Bonnechere Valley Township from 2014-2018. Prior to moving to the Eganville area in 2009, Meredith won acclaim as a film and television producer working internationally in live action drama, children’s animation, lifestyle and documentary genres. With three Genie and Gemini (now Canadian Film Award) nominations to her credit, she won the award for Best Live Action Short Film. Meredith is a graduate of McGill University.

Kristin Riddell joins RCDSB with 24 years in Education as a teacher, department head, vice principal, principal and system principal in the OCDSB in six secondary schools. Kristin is a caring and committed educator with leadership roles in instructional practices in destreaming, CRRP, assessment and evaluation, literacy, mentoring and secondary curriculum. She is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario with a Master of Professional Education.

Kristin’s responsibilities as Superintendent include: Arnprior and Renfrew Family of Schools, Student Success Lead and Student Success Initiatives including Co-Op, Dual Credits, OYAP, SHSM, SCWI, and Children & Youth in Care; Assessment, Evaluation & Reporting - Grades 7-12 / Programming - Grades 7-12; Athletics –Secondary; English as a Second Language & French as a Second Language; Environmental Education & Sustainability; and, International Education.

Jenny Smith steps into the role of Superintendent from within the Renfrew County District School Board where she served since 2017 as System Principal of Program Services & Student Success. Jenny is a dedicated and diligent educator with over nineteen years of experience in the District. She has held a number of roles and responsibilities including teacher, vice-principal and principal. She is a graduate of Charles Stuart University with a Master of International Education (School Leadership).

Jenny’s responsibilities as Superintendent include: Opeongo & Pembroke Family of Schools, School Effectiveness Lead including Improvement Planning Process, Assessment, Evaluation & Reporting – Kindergarten-Grade 6 / Programming – Kindergarten-Grade 6, MiSA, School Year Calendar, Special Services including Special Education, and Healthy Schools & Positive Mental Health and Wellness.

Meredith, Kristin and Jenny join talented and dedicated executive colleagues Jennifer Barnes, Superintendent of Business - Corporate Services, Jacqueline Poirier, Superintendent of Human Resources - Employee Services, and Renald Cousineau, Superintendent of Education – Program Services, under the leadership of Pino Buffone, Director of Education.