About SCA

Saskatchewan Co-operative Association
Feb 10

SCA is governed by a board of directors elected from within the membership. Each member of SCA may appoint one or two representatives to SCA; a voting representative and a non-voting representative. Voting representatives can be nominated for election to the SCA Board of Directors. Non-voting, member representatives participate in membership meetings throughout the year. 

Jim Deane (Chair)

President and CEO, Access Communications Co-operative Limited

Jim Deane is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Access Communications Co-operative Limited, which serves over 200 communities across Saskatchewan. A firm believer in the effectiveness and community-focus of the co-operative business model, Jim first served on the SCA board when it was incorporated in 2003.

Jim was born, raised and educated in Saskatchewan. Provincially, he is a director and past-president of the Better Business Bureau of Saskatchewan and President of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, Saskatchewan Division. Nationally, Jim is a board director and former Chair of the Canadian Communications Systems Alliance (CCSA) and a director with the Cable Public Affairs Channel (CPAC).

Carla Hirsch (Vice-Chair)

The Co-operators

Valerie Pearson (Director)

Board Member, Federated Co-operatives Limited

Valerie was elected to the Board of Federated Co-operatives Limited in 2015.  She is a member of the Board’s Audit Committee and sits on the Governance Committee as a Region Chair.  Valerie was a member of the Saskatoon Co-op Board of Directors for 12 years, and served as President for 5 years.

Co-operatives have been a huge part of Valerie’s life.  She worked for Saskatchewan Wheat Pool in Member Relations for 14 years promoting Co-ops during which time she staffed and co-ordinated Co-operative Youth Seminars.  She volunteered with the Canadian Co-operative Association to deliver micro finance opportunities to rural co-operatives in Tanzania and participated in agricultural exchanges studying co-operatives in both China and El Salvador.  In addition, Valerie co-ordinated the Junior Achievement program which was set up as a co-operative.

Valerie’s education includes a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and Certificate in Business Administration from the University of Saskatchewan. She is a Professional Agrologist licensed through the Saskatchewan Institute of Agrologists.

Valerie currently works a Provincial Manager for the education programs around violence and abuse prevention with the Canadian Red Cross.  Her past work experience includes Executive Director of 4-H Saskatchewan.  Her professional and community involvements include Chair of the Professional Conduct Committee for the Saskatchewan Institute of Agrologists, Past President of 4-H Canada and public appointed member of the Discipline Committee for the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses Association.  Past involvements include Chair of the Agriculture Council of Saskatchewan, Executive Board member of the Saskatchewan Agricultural Hall of Fame and Board member of the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce.

Valerie was awarded the Queens Jubilee Medal in 2012 and was responsible for 4-H Saskatchewan being recognized by the Frazer Institute and the Donner Foundation as one of the best run non-profit organizations in Canada for three consecutive years.

Valerie and her husband Jamie live in Saskatoon.

James Gilliard (Director)

Board Member, Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada

I live at Rainbow Housing Co-operative in Saskatoon with my family and became a member on September 1st, 2002, and have been involved in the sector ever since.  I find it to be rewarding, challenging, and very educational.

I am currently serving on Rainbow Board of Directors as well on the board of the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada.

My experience in the sector is as follows: 2003 – 2009 Rainbow Housing Board of directors, 3 years as president; 2005 – 2011 CHF Canada Board of Directors where I was on the nominating committee and the executive of the Board;   2010 – 2011 SCA Board of Directors; 2005 – 2011 The Co-operators Regional Committee; 2007 – 2013 CHAS Board of Directors 4 years as president; 2013 – present Rainbow Housing Board of Directors as president since 2014; 2014 – 2016 Saskatoon Community Clinic Board of Directors where I was on the Governance committee, Values Committee and Facilities committee. 

Patrick Lapointe (Director)

Community Health Co-operative Federation Limited

Marc-Andre Pigeon (Director)

Centre for the Study of Co-operatives


Andrea Oliphant (voting representative)

Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation

Ted Struthers (voting representative)


Jason Majid (voting representative)

Concentra Bank

John Klein (voting representative)

Regina Car Share Co-operative



Don Mathies (member representative)

Board Member, Federated Co-operatives Limited

Jen Budney (member representative)

Centre for the Study of Co-operatives