Governance, Board of Directors & Affiliations

Governance

River Valley School operates as a not-for-profit educational institution. It is governed by a parent Board of Directors with a strong community of educators, students and parents. The independent Board of Directors was formed in 2003 and is governed by Private School Regulations under the Alberta School Act, the Societies Act and the River Valley School By-Laws.

Board of Directors

As a not-for-profit charitable society, River Valley School has a Board of Directors that oversees the governance of the organization. Their primary focus is long-term strategic work for the school, maintenance of our mission and vision as well as ensuring that we are operating in compliance with the legal requirements of a charitable society and a private school under the School Act. The Board and Head of School work together in these areas and the Head of School reports monthly on the operational components of River Valley School.

Learn more – board overview.

The Board of Directors for the 2021-22 School Year are:

Brett

Brett J. Undershute

Board Chair

Brett Undershute is a financial professional with experience in investing, foreign exchange, mergers, acquisitions, divestitures and capital raising. He is the founder and President of Mt. Brisemia Capital Corp., a boutique foreign exchange dealer.

Mr. Undershute holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Finance) from the University of Calgary and an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business. He is currently serving as Board Chair of the River Valley School and a Trustee of the Jeffery Scholarship Foundation.

Brett has three children who have attended River Valley School.

Jane Kerr

Vice Chair

Jane Kerr is the President and CEO of Ansonia Properties, a real estate company with both commercial and multifamily properties in Calgary’s inner city. Jane grew up in this family business, and returned to it in 2009 after a career as an emergency veterinarian practicing in both New York City and Calgary. Jane holds a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine, and has one child at River Valley School and one at West Island College. Jane has been on the Board of Directors of the River Valley School Society since 2019 and is also on the Board of Directors of the Inglewood Business Improvement Association.

Melanie Gallant

Treasurer

Melanie Gallant is the Manager, Production & Revenue Accounting at Peyto Exploration & Development Corp where she manages production and revenue accounting for +80,000 boe/d company. Mrs. Gallant has an MBA from Heriot-Watt University and is a Certified General Accountant (CGA). In addition to serving as Treasurer for the River Valley School Board, Melanie is also Treasurer for her community association. Her children currently attend West Island College.

Rich Lee

Secretary

Rich worked as a production engineer and project manager for 10 years at Shell, in Germany, the Netherlands, and Canada. He now works in construction and owns a general contracting and fencing company; Greenstone Construction. With a passion for sustainable construction, the company has most recently built seven major child care centres in Calgary and Edmonton. Rich holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics as well as a Master’s of Science in Finance and Management from Loughborough University.

Rich has two children who are currently enrolled at River Valley School.

Dan Collins

Dan Collins is a results oriented senior leader with 25 years of commercial development and strategy experience in diverse international energy markets. He has been employed by Suncor Energy for over 15 years and currently works as Director Corporate Strategy. Dan holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Finance & Entrepreneurship from Boston College as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Massachusetts. Dan is a proud father of three River Valley School Alumni, who all currently attend West Island College.

Chester Krala

Chester Krala has been a member of the Board of Directors as well as a passionate, engaged parent within the school community for many years. Chester has four children who have attended River Valley. Chester and his family are also large promoters of the school’s Arrowsmith Program. He is currently the President/CEO, Redstar Oil & Gas Inc.

Adam Phillips

Adam is the Senior Pipeline Project Manager and Technical Coordinator at ILF Consultants, Inc. where he is accountable for the oversight and coordination of concept development and front-end engineering for a technically complex and unique design-build pipeline project in western Canada. Adam holds a Bachelors of Science (with Distinction) in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Calgary. He is a sports enthusiast and has served as a coach/assistant coach on many of his son’s minor league sports teams. His two sons are currently enrolled in River Valley School in Grade 3 and Grade 5.

Eric von Engelbrechten

Eric von Engelbrechten, CPA, CA joined AltaGas in 2012 and became Vice President and Controller in 2018. Prior to AltaGas he worked at Ernst & Young (EY) from 2006 to 2012. He was recognized as one of EY’s Top Alumni Under 40 in 2018. Eric graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Calgary. He has two children both enrolled in River Valley School (ages 5 and 7), and his children started attending the school in 2019. He joined the River Valley School Board in June 2021.

Tatum Woywitka

Tatum serves as the Canadian Legal Counsel at Schlumberger Canada Limited and is recognized as a key member of the senior management team. Prior to Schlumberger Canada Limited, she worked at Bennett Jones LLP as an associate in the Litigation department. With a blend of in-house and law firm experience, Tatum proves to be a valuable asset to the River Valley School Board of Directors. She has a child currently enrolled in River Valley School.

Accreditation & Affiliations

River Valley School is accredited by Alberta Education.


Accreditation of Early Learning and Care Services since 2016.


River Valley School is the only school in Alberta that offers the Arrowsmith Program; a scientific approach to help students overcome learning disabilities and challenges. Arrowsmith certified teachers focus on the science of neuroplasticity to retrain the brain and give students the tools they need to succeed in the classroom and life.