Hello! We're Team VICA. Nice to meet you.
Rory KulmalaChief Executive Officer
Rory has been working the construction scene throughout Canada for the last 25 years but primarily in the West as a general contractor and owner for both public and private sectors. With credentials out the wahzoo, he has accreditation as an Applied Science Technologist and a PMP, topped with an MBA. He retired after 28 years as a reserve officer with Canada’s Navy in early 2016 to spend more time with his family. His diverse background makes him an ideal candidate to lead VICA for years to come.
With his nautical bent, Rory would transform into a ship. Although the sea can be filled with peril, a ship that is able to weather the storm is a critical link to the world’s economy. Having been around the construction buoy (again with the nautical), he knows the ins and outs of the industry, who’s who in the zoo, and has established relationships that he leverages to enhance membership value. We just have to get him to relax on the morning inspections!
Call Rory direct: 250.727.2497
Dawn CharityManager, Member Services (Nanaimo)
Dawn is a familiar face to many in the construction industry, as VICA’s longest staff member of 18 years. With her extensive knowledge and experience, she is always ready to assist members and future members alike.
Call Dawn direct: 250.483.7669
Kelly MarionManager, Marketing & Communications
Kelly has been with VICA since October 2016 and, while she's a mover and a shaker, she promises she hasn't looked back. You may not have met her (yet) but you've most certainly seen her work — be it coding on a web page, email marketing, news releases, designs, or a publication. Kelly's favourite thing about working within small organizations is the opportunity to have her hands in every pot. It makes sense then, that her w̶e̶a̶p̶o̶n̶ tool of choice would be the screwdriver: there's a unique bit for every head, just like there is a unique approach for every initiative.
When Kelly decides to finally leave the office for the day, she's usually leaving for one of two reasons: to conquer a mountain or to satiate her thirst with a bold red or a cold pint. She's not shy; come say hi!
Call Kelly direct: 250.800.0918
John EspleyManager, Member Engagement
John is a “people person” who has been lucky enough in his long career to connect his work in business to his passion for community. As the Past Chair of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce, and a member of several not-for-profit boards, he believes that a healthy business community—and a healthy construction industry—supports a healthy community.
When John has had enough of people, which can happen from time to time, he heads to the water with his kayak or to the woods with a backpack to enjoy the wonderful peace and quiet that mother nature provides.
Call John direct: 250.475.0749
Chenelle FalconerManager, Training & Education
If you've taken any of our courses, or had questions about Gold Seal Certification or CPD Points, you have probably spoken to Chenelle! She's that inquisitive and helpful woman who gets a kick out of hearing your enthusiasm for growing within the industry. It makes sense then that training and education is her schtick as it's her business to help you grow your business through further learning. Chenelle has been with VICA since September 2015 and tells us she would be lost with Internet Cat Videos.
Call Chenelle direct: 250.483.7591
* for online course registration, please contact Serena
Serena HuppeServices Assistant (Nanaimo)
That bubbly woman answering your phone calls and questions out of the Nanaimo office? That's Serena. If she hasn't proven to be helpful to you yet, then you haven't given her the proper chance. No problem is too big for her to solve and she'll walk you through the steps as if she wrote the guidebook herself.
Serena likes wine, big dogs, and Brie, and she's incredibly photogenic.
Call Serena direct: 250.999.8933
*for online course registration assistance
Kendra RenaertsProject Services Coordinator (Nanaimo)
Kendra (aka Kenderella) is our purveyor of project updates. She knows the ins and outs of BidCentral and is in constant contact with planning departments throughout the Island on a hunt to find you prebid data for our weekly, exclusive-to-members PreBid Report that accompanies our Project Bulletin.
Like a few other VICA staff members she, too, enjoys a big ole glass of wine.
Call Kendra direct: 250.800.2027
Owen O'RourkeCommunications & Events Coordinator
Owen has been with VICA since July 2019! Pinning himself as a creative person, Owen loves the challenge of blending his creative intuitions with his professional life. With years of experience working with member-based organizations Owen is excited to expand on the initiatives VICA has taken to serve our members. Not shying away from the spotlight you’ll be seeing him around the office or at our events, with the potential of a glimpse of him on the dance floor. If we were to assign Owen a tool, it would probably be a ladder- although we doubt he’s ever had to use one (he’s freakishly tall).
When he’s not grinding away in Photoshop or behind the lens at events, you’ll most likely find him walking his dog Woody or hanging out at the lake.
Elle MackenzieAdministrative Coordinator
Lauren, or Elle as we call her, comes from an entrepreneurial background in pretty much everything from restaurants to commercial brokering. So why VICA? She loves small teams with drive, enthusiasm, purpose, and a lot of humor thrown in for good measure. Elle looks forward to curbing administrative redundancies and being the go-to for her team and for VICA Members, because much like a ruler, she draws the line between chaos and order (yes, she coloured inside the lines, even as a child).
When she is not at work attempting to tell everyone what to do, she is at home attempting to tell everyone what to do but it’s usually from her patio holding wine, a good book, and probably a cat.
Connie LuiFinancial Controller
Connie has served as a finance administration manager and senior financial and budget planner in crown corporations and the not-for-profit field for the last 10 years. She joined VICA in September of 2017.
Originally from Vancouver, Connie came to Victoria to get her BCom at the University of Victoria. Over the years, she fell in love with the city and decided to make the capital her home.
If you need numbers crunched, go to her!
Sarah Bartfai (Maternity Leave)Manager, Events & Administration
Sarah has been with VICA for nine years. If you haven’t already met her at the office or at one of our member events, she’s the woman with the unfaltering, genuine smile on her face. She’s a jack of all trades who claims to be the hammer of the world of tools: simple yet reliable.
When asked what song represents her life, her outlook, and/or her current state she replied, “Happy, by Pharrell”. For a woman who has a beautiful young boy, a loving boyfriend, and colleagues who would be lost without her, it makes sense. When asked what she’d be lost without, Sarah said spreadsheets...