Alan KearnsAlan Kearns
Managing Partner and Head Coach

Mr. Alan Kearns serves as the Managing Partner and Head Coach of CareerJoy. Dubbed by media as “Canada’s Career Coach”, Mr. Kearns has more than 22 years of experience coaching professionals with major career & leadership decisions.

Voted one of the Top 40 entrepreneurs under the age of 40, Alan is a regular contributor to Canadian media on the latest trends in the Canadian workforce, he has contributed to numerous Television programs including, Till Debt Do U$ Part, Princess, Breakfast Television, CBC The National and The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos. He is a career expert on the Oprah Winfrey Network reality show – Million Dollar Neighbourhood and provides regular commentary on career issues to a number of different news organizations including, CBC radio, CTV Canada AM, The Toronto Star, The National Post and The Globe and Mail. Under Mr. Kearns’ leadership, CareerJoy has become the official career coaching company for York University Alumi, Queen’s University Alumni, Carleton University Alumni, University of Toronto Alumni, Athabasca University Alumni and numerous other respected Canadian organizations.

Alan hosts one of Canada’s leading career Podcasts “CareerJoy Conversations”. His guests have included John Stanton founder of The Running Room, Patricia Lovett-Reid Senior Vice-President of TD Waterhouse, Olympic Coach Peter Jensen, Ottawa Senators founder Bruce Firestone, Dragons Den coach and Venture Capitalist Sean Wise and Jim Citrin bestselling author of The 5 Patterns of Extraordinary Careers. Mr. Kearns is certified in the Highlands Career Assessment Methodology and was a founding member of the International Association of Coaches (IAC).

Mr. Kearns is grateful to have had the opportunity to demonstrate an extensive and established record of successfully coaching a wide array of diverse professionals toward achieving their life and career goals. This includes CEOs, senior banking, software and communications executives, professional athletes, senior Federal Government officials, Provincial Government officials, legal practitioners and more.

Alan’s goal is: Work. Made better.

You can connect with Alan on Linkedin and Twitter

Coaching Team

Carole Sandy is a Counselling/Therapist who has worked as an educator in several post secondary institutions. She has counselled and coached a variety of clients in collaborative conversations from a strength-based approach to build skills to enable them to navigate challenging circumstances, crises in relationships and life transitions.  Her work experience is a blend of business and counselling responsibilities, and has experience managing, hiring, coordinating and supervising staff in fast-paced multi-union environments. She has developed and delivered workshops on a number of issues and draws on diverse approaches including narrative, cognitive-behavioural, and solution focused therapy. Click to learn more about Carole >

Emily Koolen has an extensive background in Human Resources, Organizational Development and Consulting spans various sectors and industries. Emily has advised, coached and engaged all levels of employees, including senior executives and has created several human resources departments and organizations. Emily completed her Bachelors in Psychology at Queen’s University and holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Human Resources Management and the Certified Human Resources Professional designation. Click to learn more about Emily >

George Muenz has over 30 years of business experience both as an entrepreneur and leader in the high technology sector and has a reputation for being decisive and leading by example. He’s led sales teams in the fast-paced Internet start-ups sector and managed Operations, HR and Business Development departments. George has managed recruiting and staffing, including hiring hundreds of staff for his direct employers — from start-ups to Fortune 100 firms. George was Director of Sales and VP Business Development for NetNation, a publicly traded company on NASDAQ. Click to learn more about George >

Greg Zador has developed and lead teams in a variety of settings in Canada and abroad, drawing on a richness of experience from living and working in Canada’s west, centre and east, as well as in southern Africa for six years. As a collaborator and facilitator by nature, Greg has worked in partnership with representatives of the business, community and education sectors and all orders of government. This experience combined with aptitudes for astute analysis and representation and abilities to provide well-grounded, articulate and discrete strategic advice to job seekers, executive management teams. Greg derives particular satisfaction and reward from developing, mentoring, enabling and seeing the success of others. Click to learn more about Greg >

jayson bwJayson Lavergne  is a Career, Leadership & Professional Resume Coach, and Senior Talent Specialist with over 18 years designing job advertisements, reviewing resumes & interviewing for jobs across Canada. Jayson is deeply knowledgeable in hiring practices in the Canadian Federal Public Service and can clarify the complex process.  Additionally, based in Alberta, he is experienced with employers and jobs in the Natural Resource sector including engineering and construction in the oil sands.  Click to learn more about Jayson >

JillJill Kirson  has a doctorate level degree (Ed.S) in Community Counselling as well as an MA in Community Counselling and an MA in International Development.  Jill has spent almost two decades as both a career counsellor/coach and a HR professional working in Universities, government agencies and in the private sector in both Canada and the United States. As a HR professional, her expertise includes recruiting, talent management and training and development. Click to learn more about Jill >

Kevin Schafer was a Project Manager with a prominent hi-tech company in Ottawa when, in the midst of massive lay-offs, he was handed his “opportunity” for a career transition after 16-years of service. Following his passion, he founded a music agency. As a music manager and agent, Kevin discovered that his skills are directly transferable to CareerJoy. As a career coach, he continues to explore the passions of our clients and has particular skill when it comes to writing bios and marketing skills. Click to learn more about Kevin >

Untitled design (5)Laurie Fenske  forged her coaching skills during a distinguished career in the financial services industry. After being mentored by her father at his investment firm, she grew into sales and management roles before following her passion into the world of coaching in 2015. Today, she offers solution-based coaching to clients throughout Canada and the United States. Click to learn more about Laurie>


Untitled design (8)Lillian Thomsen enjoyed a full professional career in the Canadian Foreign Service serving in culturally and linguistically diverse positions both in Canada and abroad.   In her final position with Global Affairs Canada she served as the Director General and Dean of the Canadian Foreign Service Institute, which is comprised of four schools, offering courses to public servants and selected non-governmental clients in a range of internationally focussed courses, leadership and professional development and some fifty foreign languages on a campus in Gatineau, Quebec. Click to learn more about Lillian>

Lisa Pierosara_bw_sqLisa Pierosara Lisa is a senior professional career coach, facilitator and program leader, who fosters change, effectiveness and communications excellence. She is a passionate advocate for service, relationship and continuous growth. Lisa has over 20 years of professional experience across Corporate Canada and Academia in sectors including retail, CPG, wireless, management consulting and marketing. Click to learn more about Lisa >


Lynda Peto is a Certified Career and Employment Coach with over 10 years of experience supporting and assisting her clients in meeting their career and employment goals.  Working with HR professionals, Lynda has a strong connection with the business community and diverse job opportunities.  Lynda has 20 years of business experience as a sales and marketing professional and entrepreneur. Her expertise in marketing is valuable in assisting clients to match, identify and articulate their skills and experience in the job search process. Lynda understands the challenges, fears, and uncertainty as well as the joy, fulfillment, and passion that can be achieved in making a successful transition. She has recently obtained her Certificate in Adult and Continuing Education. Click to learn more about Lynda >

Untitled design (6)Michelle Horne is an Image Consultant and executive presence coach. Michelle is a professional speaker and international trainer. Michelle has been described by clients to dig deep to help her clients define their authentic brand and style and get results. She helps her clients to discovering their Personal Brand statement, define their style identity and use that image to create success in personal and professional situations. Michelle is known for her thoughtful, thorough, but always fun approach to helping clients take ownership of their authentic images. A few things about me that I love: my family, a great cup of coffee, a great place to shop and a great book!

Richard Rochefort Richard Rochefort is an expert in leadership development, management excellence and learning. He has extensive experience designing and facilitating innovative conferences, strategic planning sessions, executive retreats, management forums and staff general assemblies. Having served as a senior executive for 23 of his 35 years in the Public Service of Canada, throughout his career, he devoted relentless effort to the renewal of institutions using coaching, mentoring and learning as strategic levers to create and sustain a culture of service delivery excellence.  Click to learn more about Richard >

Sandra Bobkin has more than 15 years of private and public sector experience in a variety of learning, leadership and management roles. This includes service in the retail, financial and health care industries. Her coaching has focused on leadership and team development, effective communication, emotional intelligence, career transition/management and 360 feedback results.  Click to learn more about Sandra >

Taryn_bw Taryn Brady is a Senior Career & Leadership coach with years of experience guiding teams, individuals, and leaders to achieve their goals, and works with clients in a broad cross-section of industries and both public and private sectors. A lifelong learner, Taryn coaches clients in a way that is authentic, creative and solution-focused, and ultimately helps direct individuals on their path to successful and fulfilling careers. Click to learn more about Taryn >

ThomasThomas Labelle holds a Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching, Bachelor’s Degree in Human Service Administration and is a Certified Career Development Professional. He feels extremely fortunate to be in the position to excite and motivate clients about career and life “possibilities” and to help them devise strategies towards achieving their goals. Thomas loves nature, sports, fitness, paddling his kayak and Friday hockey. His respect, love and appreciation for his family grow with each passing day. He can truly call his amazing wife his “best friend” and the most amazing teacher. Click to learn more about Thomas >

Valerie_Legge bwValerie Legge has first-hand experience of career and intercultural transition. A classical violinist turned professional coach, Valerie is committed to supporting her clients on their unique path to thriving by connecting their strengths, passions and values with practical steps for implementing positive changes. Click to learn more about Valerie >


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Judith Cane has worked in the financial services industry for 27 years first as an insurance agent, then as a full service advisor and finally, since 2010, as a Money Coach. She has worked with hundreds of clients to create a clear picture of their financial situation, build a realistic spending & savings plan, implement a “Get Out of Debt and Stay There” strategy and finally help them begin to achieve their financial goals. Click to learn more about Judith >

Tanya Smith

Tanya Smith works with individuals to develop/build their competencies in order to improve their capacity to achieve long term excellence, self-correct and self-generate. As an accredited integral leadership development coach she has worked with and supported individuals and teams in developing/strengthening their competencies to achieve personal and corporate objectives. Click to learn more about Tanya >

Ross MacLeod

Ross MacLeod is an experienced senior executive, who relishes the challenge of solving difficult problems and achieving meaningful results for clients, employers and colleagues.  He specializes in enterprise transformation and management excellence through clear results, values and ethics and human resources management. Click to learn more about Ross >

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Andrea Nicholls is well-known for her ability to capture attention with creative and surprising marketing solutions. Andrea is now changing the ‘engagement’ landscape. Her drive to achieve exceptional results was proven in senior strategic marketing positions with prestigious brands and now her passion for helping the C-suite connect with people on the front lines – and getting them wildly engaged – sets her apart, making her a much sought-after resource. Click to learn more about Andrea >

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Victoria Miles has 25 years of experience in helping organizations shape and deliver strategies centered around the intersection of commerce, culture and community. Whether it has been through leadership roles in global brand companies, as an entrepreneur in a leading-edge corporate consultancy, or working for international and national non-profits, she has always focused on those things that will be truly transformative. Click to learn more about Victoria >

Resume & Personal Branding Team

Debora Dekok cannot live without pen and paper. An award-winning photojournalist, Debora has written breaking news and quirky human interest stories for newspapers, as well as for corporate and military magazines. She recently left the world of journalism to grow strawberries on the family farm, but gets her writing itch scratched by composing resumes which she thoroughly enjoys. When penning resumes, Debora makes absolute sure to focus on the client’s specific needs. Click to learn more about Debora >

GenaGena Gibson’s entire 20-year career has been spent at community newspapers, from a cub reporter in Manotick to the owner of a small weekly newspaper in Lanark, Ont. In that time, she’s had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing many people from all walks of life, learned their stories, and shared those stories to the reading public. She’s following the same path with CareerJoy as a Resume Coach – taking clients’ career histories, turning them into compelling stories to offer to potential employers. Click to learn more about Gena >

Jennifer Cowan writes, mentors and consults. She has created stories for television, radio, print, interactive game apps and corporate websites. Her television work has garnered multiple awards and her first novel was a New York Times Editors’ Choice. Sharing her love of writing, Jennifer teaches media, screenwriting and comedy writing at Ryerson University and the University of Toronto. Having achieved many of her own creative goals, one of her greatest thrills is helping her colleagues, clients and students tell their stories. When she’s not wrestling with words and ideas, she’s walking the dog, making things or relishing her status of Jeopardy champion of her living room.

Josh Clements’ writing career began with a Bachelor’s degree in journalism and creative writing, and a Master’s in film studies. His love for language started at the age of six, and hasn’t dimmed since. Josh’s greatest strength is helping individuals from all walks of life find their unique voice, and present their ideas in the most compelling way possible.  When it comes to working with clients, Josh is a very patient listener, and feels that sometimes it is the seemingly insignificant details that can really go a long way in crafting an individual’s personal brand.

DSC_2697_bwKaren Haas takes an analytical approach to coaching & resume writing, deciphering each client’s driving factors for success and what sets them apart in the marketplace. In previous lives as a competitive figure skater, financial planner, and tutor, the creation of favorable outcomes was achieved by strategically setting and reaching goals. In pursuing writing as a passion, Karen skillfully produces and edits articles, newsletters, technical and academic papers, and creative content for websites. “I live each day with gratitude and optimism.” Click to learn more about Karen>

Untitled design (11)Tudor Robins credits the adventure of becoming a mother with giving her the strength and courage to take the big (and somewhat intimidating) step of writing for a living. She feels her degrees in English Literature and Journalism and years of accumulated experience in the publishing industry are being put to good use every time she sees her work in print. Tudor enjoys writing anything that tells a story and considers resumes to be the ultimate “short story” of a person’s life. Click to learn more about Tudor >

Untitled design (11)Rebecca Bartley has always had a passion for writing and the art of telling a great story. With over 7 years of experience in public relations, communications, marketing and writing she has worked alongside a number of organizations from international corporations to small businesses and from government to online outlets. She believes that every client has a story to tell and she revels in knowing that she can help others with their stories. Click to learn more about Rebecca >


Leadership Team


Lee Grant, B.Sc.
VP, Corporate

Lee has over 15 years of business experience developing and managing corporate relationships in the financial services industry.

Before joining CareerJoy, Lee served as a Vice President and a Director at RBC Capital Markets where he excelled as the primary point of contact and face of RBC for many large multinational corporations. His strong interpersonal skills, attention to detail and commitment to delivering an unparalleled client experience have been instrumental in his ability to build credibility on a national and international level.

Lee has been a multiple recipient of the annual Brendan Wood International distinction for exceptional knowledge and service in his industry and brings to CareerJoy his dedication to delivering sound advice and trusted service at the corporate level.

Untitled design (10)Jason Parks 
Director of Business Development, Corporate

Jason has 20 years of proven business development expertise and believes in creating raving fans from every client experience. Coming from a background in printing & education, the balance of growing business while managing ongoing client projects comes naturally to Jason. He married his high school sweetheart and together he and his wife have two tech savvy teenage daughters. Apart from family, Jason’s passions are good coffee, Sens hockey, playing guitar, and oh yes…is both a Trekkie and a Star Wars fan!

TravisTravis Gardiner 
Director of Business Development, Greater Toronto Area

Travis has over 15 years of sales and marketing experience including 10 years in the human resources space. Prior to joining CareerJoy, he was responsible for sales and marketing for the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada’s career site, CPA Source. Travis is married and has one daughter. A lover of sports, he enjoys playing hockey, golf, cycling, and snowboarding. On the weekends you can usually find him at the rink watching his daughter play hockey.

BrittanyBrittany Knapp, BSc
Manager of Client Services

Brittany is a detail-oriented coffee addict and a true “people person”. With a passion for superior client service and a knack for creative solutions, she enjoys being the manager of first impressions for CareerJoy’s clients.

erin2_bw2Erin Patchell
Finance & Operations Manager

Erin has a gift for both seeing the big picture and implementing the details. In her spare time, she is the President of the Appleton Food Co-op, Founder of Youth Sport Expo Ottawa, and mother to 3 very active kids. She is passionate about helping others achieve success, and takes our mission here at CareerJoy straight to heart.

Amanda - head shotAmanda Beselt
Client Services & Marketing Administrator

With a background in web content design and a passion for helping others, Amanda excels at making her clients’ lives easier through clear communication practices and plain language writing. When she’s not in the office you will find her one of three places: at the ball diamond, at the ice rink or in the kitchen.

Untitled design (5)Debbie Sprowl
Finance Administrator

Debbie has worked in the non-profit world for many years, doing financial and database management. She enjoys exploring new areas and being outdoors in the summer. In her free time, she loves doing family history research. Helping others is what attracted her to working with CareerJoy.