November 2023 Newsletter

November 09, 2023
News and Updates


This month, the College Employer Council (CEC) will begin Part-Time Support Staff negotiations. This newsletter is dedicated to introducing the Part-Time Support Employer Bargaining Team. The team brings expertise in different areas of the College sector and represents all regions of Ontario as well as Colleges of all sizes. Part-time Support Staff certified in 2018 and this is their third round of bargaining.

Follow the CEC on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay informed in between newsletters.

What's Going On?

CEC News Bill 124 Update

A new secure website for College benefit administrators and labour relations professionals has been created. The new site is user-friendly, one hundred percent searchable, and AODA compliant. It was built on SharePoint and is a resource hub for human resources employees at the Ontario public Colleges. The old secure website will no longer be functioning by the end of the year.

All three unionized groups have met with the CEC since Bill 124 was struck down. They have each negotiated increases of 3%, 3%, and 3.5% for eligible employees over the course of the 3-year collective agreements. More information for each group is available on 

Bargaining Update

Part-time Support Staff Bargaining

This years' Part-Time Support employer bargaining team is made up of 11 individuals who will represent the 24 Ontario public Colleges in negotiations with OPSEU/SEFPO. Members of the Colleges’ Management Bargaining Team are selected based on their subject expertise and experience; past work on joint provincial committees; and continuity with past and future rounds of negotiations. Additionally, they represent small, medium, and large Colleges while maintaining a regional balance. 

Part-time support staff management bargaining team

Meet the Part-Time Support Management Bargaining Team

Pascal and Kim

Pascal Bessette, Chair, Vice-President, Human Resources and Organizational Culture, Collège La Cité  Kim Watkins, Vice-Chair, Vice President, Corporate Services, Mohawk College
Pascal Bessette has worked with Colleges for over 19 years, serving in the capacity of Vice-President, Human Resources and Organizational Culture at Collège La Cité since July 2017. Since 2020, he also oversees the EDI portfolio and the Project Management Office of the College. Prior to joining La Cité, he held human resource positions with the French Catholic School Board in Toronto, during which time he served as a member of the management bargaining team. In 2019, Pascal chaired the management bargaining team for the negotiation of the first collective agreement for the Part-time Support Staff group. Since 2014, Pascal has been also part of the management bargaining team for the Full-Time Support Staff group and, in 2022, chaired the management bargaining team for the renewal of the collective agreement. Currently, he is the management Co-Chair of the Support Staff Employee/Employer Relations Committee (EERC) – Full-Time and Part-Time groups. Kim Watkins was appointed Vice President Corporate Services in December 2020. She oversees a dynamic portfolio that includes information technology, human resources, facilities, finance, legal and risk, and ancillary services.
Kim joined Mohawk as the college’s Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of Mohawk College Foundation in July 2016. She has also served as Interim Chief Information Officer and Acting Chief Human Resources Officer. Prior to joining Mohawk, she was the Director of Finance and Controller at Canadore College in North Bay, Ontario where she provided financial leadership to the College and Canadore College Foundation for 12 years.  Kim has also been a management member of the Support Staff EERC since May 2018. Additionally, she currently serves as a Trustee on the CAAT Pension Plan Board, is a member of the Customer Council at OECM, a Board Member of St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton, and Chair of the Board for The Children’s Aid Society Hamilton.

Lucie and Rachelle

Lucie Laperrière, Manager, Organizational Development and Talent Management, Canadore College Rachelle Perreault-Léveillé, Director, Human Resources
Lucie joined Canadore College in August 2017 as the Manager, Organizational Development and Talent Management.  In her previous role as Labour Relations Specialist with the North Bay Regional Health Centre, she led the Labour/Employee Relations for the OPSEU Bargaining Unit which included grievance/arbitration management and scheduling, local union/employer committee work, collective agreement interpretation (Local and Central), investigations, guidance and leadership to employees and management, local collective bargaining, etc.  She participated in the planning and labour activities related to the amalgamation of two organization which included involvement with the Unions, Management, Ontario Hospital Association and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.  During amalgamation, Lucie worked with four different Collective Agreements (Local and Central) including ONA, CUPE and SEIU.  Rachelle has dedicated 18 years of her career to Collège Boréal, embarking on a remarkable journey from her early days as a part-time support staff member, transitioning to a full-time support staff position, leading to her current role as the Director of Human Resources, a position she has held since 2016.  In addition to her managerial responsibilities, Rachelle serves as a member of the Joint Insurance Committee and is also part of the Employee/Employer Relations Committee.

Michelle and Cathy

Michelle McCollum, Vice President, Facilities and Sustainability, George Brown College Cathy Viviano, Consultant, Human Resources, College Employer Council
Michelle leads infrastructure planning, facilities, sustainability, and design and construction services at George Brown College. Prior to joining George Brown, Michelle was AVP Facilities and Sustainable Infrastructure at Sheridan College. Michelle has spent over 30 years in post-secondary, municipal government, and education administration in the UK and Canada as a public sector leader, driving key strategic initiatives, capital infrastructure development, and organizational transformation. Michelle holds a Master of Business Administration from Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, UK, a Bachelor of Science from Edinburgh Napier University, UK and is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Cathy is a Human Resources Consultant at the College Employer Council (CEC). Previously she worked in Labour Relations for the City of Brampton and Sheridan College. In addition to being a member of the Support Staff Management bargaining team, Cathy serves on provincial Support Staff Management Union committees. Cathy holds a Bachelor of Human Resources and Labour Relations from Athabasca University and is a Certified Human Resources Professional.

Graham, Peter

Graham Lloyd, CEO, College Employer Council Peter McKeracher, Vice President, Labour Relations, College Employer Council
On August 1, 2019, Graham was appointed as the College Employer Council (CEC) CEO.
Previously, he was employed with the Dairy Farmers of Ontario, Ontario's milk marketing board, where he held several senior leadership roles, including, its CEO. Prior to that, Graham was also the General Counsel at a multi-national Insurer and, prior to that, was a litigator in Toronto.
As a bilingual business leader and lawyer with 27 years of experience, he brings a significant skillset in advocacy, strategic planning, governance, communications, and managing complex negotiations and issues while regularly working with stakeholders, government, and the media.
During his time in the dairy industry, he worked with multiple diverse stakeholders and was actively involved in negotiating complex agreements and programs.
Peter McKeracher has been the Vice President of Labour Relations at the College Employer Council (CEC) since 2019, previously serving as the Director of Labour Relations and Director Academic. Before joining the CEC, Peter was the Director of Staff Relations at Algonquin College, managing labour relations with the Academic and Support Staff locals. He also taught law at Durham College, where he was the President of the OPSEU Faculty local for 18 years.

Trish and Abby

Trish Appleyard, Director, Labour Relations, College Employer Council Abby Radovski, Director, Communications, College Employer Council
As Director, Labour Relations for College Employer Council (CEC), Trish provides guidance and advice to her clients in the public college sector on a wide variety of labour relations, human resources, and human rights issues. She has previously worked as a labour and employment lawyer at Baker & McKenzie LLP and at Queen's University Faculty of Law before moving to St. Lawrence College, where she was the Associate Director, Workplace Relations. She completed a clerkship at the International Labour Organization's International Organization for Employers in Geneva in 2010, where she assisted with drafting a guide to the ILO's conventions. 

Trish has a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Calgary and a Master of Industrial Relations and Juris Doctor degrees, both from Queen's University. Trish is licensed by the Law Society of Ontario
Abby is the Director of Communications at the College Employer Council (CEC). Some of her responsibilities include communicating updates on bargaining, promoting positive labour relations at the Colleges, and creating a trusted resource hub for information on collective agreements, benefits administration, and labour relations.
She brings more than ten years of diverse communications experience, having worked with clients in different sectors such as education, finance, consumer goods, and health.
Before joining the CEC, she led an integrated team of digital marketers and creative designers in strategy development, content creation, video production, social media management, issues management, and internal communications.
She volunteers with Girl Guides of Canada in her free time and is an elected Secretary on her condo corporation's board of directors.


Gregory Power, Legal Counsel, Hicks Morley

Gregory Power is a labour and employment lawyer in Hicks Morley's Toronto office, but his practice extends nationwide. He provides strategic, practical, and cost-effective advice to employers from coast to coast on a variety of workplace issues.
In addition to appearing before arbitrators, labour boards, courts, and human rights tribunals at both the provincial and federal levels, Gregory routinely advises corporate transactions, restructuring, and positive employee relations. He serves as the chief spokesperson for local, national, and multi-national corporations embroiled in collective bargaining and has successfully negotiated collective agreements in every province except Quebec.
Prior to articling at Hicks Morley, Gregory was employed with the Newfoundland and Labrador Employers' Council. He advised clients on matters relating to employment standards, labour law, and workers' compensation. He holds an LL.B. from the University of New Brunswick, a Masters of Industrial Relations from the University of Toronto, and a Bachelor of Commerce from Memorial University in Newfoundland.