Foundation Team

Jennifer Johnstone

President & CEO

President and CEO of Central City Foundation since 2006, Jennifer’s 30-year career has focused on non-profit leadership and community resource development. She began as the founding program coordinator with the Whistler Centre for Business and the Arts and since then has held key leadership positions with a variety of organizations that include Vancity Community Foundation, Battered Women’s Support Services, Vancouver Status of Women and Ballet BC. A passionate and committed supporter of social justice and community investment, Jennifer is a past president of the Vancouver chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and currently serves as Board Chair for AFP Canada and as a director for Yaletown House Foundation, A Better Life Foundation and Battered Women’s Support Services. In her spare time, Jennifer enjoys baking cakes and hanging out with her awesome nephew the inventor.

Caithlin Scarpelli

Director, Development & Engagement

With a passion for addressing gender-based violence in our community, Caithlin has been working in the non-profit sector for over 22 years. A graduate of BCIT’s Fundraising Management Certificate Program, in 2014 Caithlin was one of fifteen women from across Canada accepted into the Coady Institute’s Canadian Women’s Foundation Leadership program at St. Francis Xavier University. In 2015, Caithlin also participated in the United States Department of State, Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs – International Visitor Leadership Program on Preventing Violence Against Women. In her role as Executive Director of Communications and Fund Development at Atira Women’s Resource Society, Caithlin was responsible for Atira Women’s Arts Society and various social enterprises, such as East Van Roasters. Recently, Caithlin established her own consultancy and is thrilled to bring her broad experience to Central City Foundation. In her spare time, Caithlin loves to bake and go for walks with her best four-legged friend, Jack.

Shawna Baylis

Program Director, SPRE & Community Development

Shawna Baylis has over 25 years of dedicated experience in social services. She demonstrates deep empathy and a solid understanding of systemic abuse, institutionalized racism, and gender-based violence against women. Specializing in harm reduction analysis, Shawna has effectively contributed to improving community health and safety through a process of active collaboration with stakeholders. With an emphasis on program development, creating sustainable partnerships, and over a decade of service on nonprofit boards, she brings extensive governance expertise and a passion for creating impactful change. Shawna is also a proud member of the International Society of Professional Women, where she collaborates with fellow professionals to advance women’s leadership and advocacy in various sectors. Shawna has built many sustainable relationships over her two decades of service in the nonprofit sector. Shawna plans to use those relationships with the intention of moving the mandate of Central City Foundation forward.

Crystal Biggs

Program Director Indigenous Initiatives & Strategic Partnerships

Crystal is from the Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation). Her parents are the late Johnny & Johanna Paull (nee Mission). Both were registered Squamish Nation members, but Johanna was originally from the Ktunaxa Nation. With over 20 years of management experience leading high-performing teams, Crystal earned a Masters of Education with a Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw praxis degree from Simon Fraser University in 2021. Crystal wishes to honour her many mentors, including Dr. Verna Billy-Minnabarriet, Vice President at the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology, where she worked for seven years. Through her part-time work at RainCity Housing and Support Society, Crystal came to recognize the importance of giving back to communities and Indigenous peoples. Crystal has two sons and two grandchildren and is involved in many Indigenous projects, sitting on various Indigenous boards and committees. She is passionate about family, changes in policies and the decolonizing process for Indigenous people across Canada.

Lanessa Amed-Yousuf

Operations Manager

A recent addition to our team managing internal operations, Lanessa has worked in the non-profit sector for the past four years serving Indigenous mothers, children and community members in East Vancouver. Born and raised in Calgary, Lanessa’s family came to Canada as refugees from the Oromia region of Ethiopia. Lanessa believes that growing up in a refugee family that faced multiple barriers has given her a unique empathy and desire to work with those within marginalized communities. With a background in business administration, human resources and entrepreneurship, she moved to Vancouver six years ago, intending to seek work that aligns with her values. Outside of work, Lanessa enjoys connecting with nature and reading.

Marjorie Agustin

Executive Administrator

Marjorie moved to Vancouver from the Philippines five years ago as an international student. She has since pursued an education in accounting and is currently fulfilling her CPA. With over four years of experience supporting non-profit organizations through her expertise in administration and accounting, Marjorie has gained an in-depth understanding of the inner workings of non-profit organizations. Marjorie enjoys working with people of diverse backgrounds, where she can learn about different cultures and improve her communication skills.