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AutismBC News: Introducing our Newest Board Members

Feb 3rd, 2021

Introducing Kelly Bains and Lucas Gates as AutismBC’s newly elected Board Members.

We are excited and proud to welcome Kelly Bains and Lucas Gates to AutismBC’s Board of Directors. Their lived experience will help us represent the autism community’s diverse range of talents, opportunities, and needs. They bring unique experiences, insights, and skills to help AutismBC support, connect, and empower the autism community and pursue its 2020-2023 Strategic Plan. Please join us in celebrating their place on our Board.

Kuljit (Kelly) Bains

Kelly is courageous, diligent, and passionate about many things, including autism awareness and understanding within her community and helping people grow. Kelly grew up in England and moved to Canada with her family roughly twenty years ago. Now, she is a proud member of the Indo-Canadian community in Surrey. She is happily married with two wonderful sons; her youngest was diagnosed with autism as a toddler, making autism awareness a cause close to her heart.

Kelly’s passion for helping others grow eventually led to her completing a degree in Leadership. She’s a finance professional in a leadership role at Farm Credit Canada, and she loves what she does. Due to her position at Farm Credit Canada, Kelly brings a widespread set of skills to AutismBC, from human resources to sales & marketing and organizational development. She is looking forward to being on AutismBC’s Board and making a difference in BC.

Lucas Gates

Lucas is kind, determined, and outgoing. He is a third-generation Vancouverite and received his autism diagnosis at the age of six. He’s incredibly proud to be the first autistic board member in AutismBC’s history! In addition to his work with AutismBC, Lucas is involved with many community initiatives. He is a Representative for the Pacific Autism Family Network and its advocacy group, the Voices of Autism; he works as a Retail Sales Associate with Canucks Sports & Entertainment and recently joined the AIDE Program Team.

Lucas is ready to make a difference in the autistic community and cannot wait to see the bright future ahead! He believes in neutral advocacy that has the power to unify the autism community by bringing people together rather than taking sides on divisive issues. His journey as a self-advocate started with the support he received from his mom, Abbe. Today, Lucas advocates for autistic people and all people with diverse abilities, including his sister Sadie, who has Down syndrome. Although we’ve made some progress in inclusive employment, Lucas believes that the neurodiverse community remains a widely untapped talent pool with a strong work ethic and good attention to detail.

 

“I know that I’m the first AutismBC Board Member on the autism spectrum, but I definitely won’t be the last.”

 

Thank you, Kelly & Lucas, for volunteering for our Board of Directors. We are excited to see what you will bring to our organization.

 

 

Meet Kelly and Lucas Live on Facebook on Feb 11 at 1:00pm! For more info, check out our event page here

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