5 December 2022
Author: Ana Fremont
, financial advice
, financial counselling
, financial empowerment
, Financial Empowerment Champion
, financial literacy
, financial planning
, financial stability
, financial well-being
, low income
, money management
, poverty reduction
, tax filing
After 18 years as the leader of Community Financial Counselling Services (CFCS) in Winnipeg, Executive Director John Silver, is retiring from a career of outstanding service to the community.
An unwavering force for good, John has led the CFCS team with courage, empathy, determination, and integrity. Under John’s visionary leadership, CFCS enhanced and expanded a range of financial empowerment programs designed to reduce poverty and increase the financial capacity of all Manitobans, all longstanding issues of equity that were only exacerbated during the pandemic.
Sally Massey Wiebe, Financial Counsellor/Financial Literacy & Empowerment Program Coordinator
Tax Training & Benefits Specialist and John’s long-time colleague at CFCS, sums up John’s leadership and collaborative spirit:
“Through his work leading CFCS over the years, John has been a true champion of Financial Empowerment as he has sought out resources for a diverse range of programs from supporting youth exiting care of Child and Family Services, coaching/counselling, CLB uptake, to growing and facilitating robust tax filing and access to benefits program delivery through CVITP tax clinics and within community-based Family Resource Centres. Much has been accomplished through CFCS programs during John’s term in leadership as the program staff has more than quadrupled and the number, variety, and reach of programs has extended far beyond the city of Winnipeg and truly become a service to all of Manitoba and even beyond our provincial borders. John has also always championed the CFCS staff team – he has been very responsive to staff needs, encouraging individual and staff growth, consistently showing an openness and willingness to hear ideas, suggestions and concerns from staff members, and actively supporting leadership development within the various programs.
Life in leadership does not come without challenges, but John’s steady, unflappable approach to navigating the troughs and crests of any storms impacting funding, programs, and personnel – even those at the level of the COVID pandemic - has been a stable foundation on which CFCS has been built and flourished over the past many years. John will be missed by CFCS, but we are grateful to him for his commitment to the work of CFCS and know the impact of his leadership will continue. We sincerely wish him a long retirement that is fulfilling and enjoyable”.
Louise Simbandumwe from Seed Winnipeg recalls their experience collaborating with John over the years “we are impressed with the impact CFCS has had in our community under John’s leadership. CFCS is a truly remarkable organization. We appreciate his commitment to providing essential services and building community capacity by providing high quality training to community partners. CFCS has incredible reach and impact – which is even more remarkable given the modest size of the organization. It has been a pleasure working with John over the past decade. SEED and our partner agencies have benefitted greatly from his collaborative approach and the depth of knowledge and expertise within his staff team. We wish him the very best life has to offer in his future endeavours!”
At Prosper Canada, we couldn’t agree more with John’s colleagues and fellow community development leaders. John’s impact is far-reaching both for those he has worked with personally and professionally. According to Adam Fair of Prosper Canada, John has made a significant impact in helping to advance the Financial Empowerment field in Winnipeg and across Canada. Under his leadership, CFCS became a leading provider of financial coaching and tax filing services and have created a scaling model that is empowering many other organizations to provide financial help services to the people they serve. John is a real innovator, always looking to find new ways to maximize impact both through frontline services as well as pushing for policy change.
On behalf of Prosper Canada and the entire Financial Empowerment field, we would like to congratulate John on an amazing career and wish him well in his retirement. There is an entire network of organizations who will continue to build on your great legacy and countless Canadians who have benefit from your efforts.
We wish you all the best in your next adventure, John!
Ana Fremont is a Manager, Program Delivery and Integration with Prosper Canada. From 2004-2011 she developed and managed several financial education programs including financial coaching and foreclosure prevention counselling services in New York and Chicago.