Founder & PresidentFull Bio
Alexandra Cunningham is a wife, mother, student, and the Vice-President of the Joy Smith Foundation. Her passion lies with her family and her desire to help others, which is why her work to help prevent human trafficking through the Joy Smith Foundation has been so rewarding over the past five years. Completing both her BSc (Hons) and BA was the beginning of her academic pursuits. As she works towards her Masters of Psychology, her aspirations to one day work with emergency service providers, first responders, and those struggling with PTSD as a clinical psychologist holds great importance in her heart. Growing up, she witnessed firsthand her brother, Edward, actively working in the field to combat human trafficking, and then her mother, Joy, compelled to make a difference by passing anti-human trafficking laws as a Member of Parliament and then starting her own Foundation. This truly inspired and influenced Alexandra as she chose her career path. Her passion for the issue, coupled with her great admiration for the tremendous work both her brother and mother have done to raise awareness and combat human trafficking here in Canada, is why she felt the need to become a member of the Joy Smith Foundation team.
As an educator, Stephanie is passionate about empowering our nation’s youth. When one of Stephanie’s former students was charged for trafficking adolescents in her small town, Stephanie felt compelled to join the Joy Smith Foundation to combat the issue. Now, it is her joy and privilege to serve our Alberta youth by training them, as well as adults, through JSF workshops across the province.
Alberta Director of Operations
Paula began her professional career as a Registered EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) in Northern Alberta. After several years, she enrolled into nursing studies and graduated with her R.N. in 1989. She has worked in Pediatrics, Maternal-Newborn nursing, and Neonatal Intensive Care. For Paula, her passion has and will always be for working with children and young families. Whether through nursing, teaching in pre-school ministries at her church, her involvement with the young mum’s weekly group, or local speaking opportunities, Paula has always focused on coming alongside children and families in a supportive teaching role to best facilitate learning needs and healthy family growth. Paula is passionate about protecting children and has a self-described "fire in her belly” in coming onboard with the Joy Smith Foundation. As the new Alberta Director, she will strive to provide the best possible support for those who are volunteering for the Foundation in Alberta.
B.C. Director of Operations
Tara is responsible for overseeing BC fundraising efforts, donor relations, and implementation of the prevention program and education curriculum in BC schools, social media outreach and the strategic initiatives in collaboration with the national strategy of JSF. With a background in media, brand marketing and over 10 years experience in the non-profit community, Tara seeks to develop a network of support and grow the engagement of the Joy Smith Foundation across Canada. She has worked alongside Joy Smith for eight years and spent time in her Ottawa Office while Mrs. Smith was a Member of Parliament. Prior to joining the Joy Smith Foundation, Tara was a well-known advocate for women’s empowerment and ending human trafficking. She worked in collaborative partnership with frontline anti-human trafficking organizations throughout South East Asia and Canada, bringing the issue of human trafficking to the world stage through her role as Miss World Canada in 2012. Tara has spoken at TEDx, MTV Exit and done national speaking tours in multiple countries. She received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, an international hero award from the Joy Smith Foundation and was named Canada’s Woman of the Year in 2011.
Breanne’s involvement with JSF began as a volunteer. She is a full time university student, majoring in Political Science (Hons) and Women's & Gender Studies, and now works part time in the Foundation offices. Having followed Joy Smith’s passionate work on human trafficking over the years, it is now an absolute pleasure and honour for her to work for the Joy Smith Foundation, amplifying the voices of some of the most marginalized women, girls and others in Canada.
National Board of Directors
- Joy Smith, Founder & President
- Alexandra Cunningham, Vice President
- Janet Campbell, Chair
- Sgt. Edward Riglin, Advisor
- Michael Riglin, Director
- Natasha Smith, Director
- Linda Kerr, Saskatchewan Director
- Joe Preston, Ontario Director