Diocesan Presidents

About the Catholic Women’s League

Kamloops Diocesan
President Dorothy Hruby kamdp@bcyukoncwl.com

Learn more about Dorthy

I have been a member of the Catholic Women’s League for 25 years and am a charter member in Sacred Heart, Tumbler Ridge and Our Lady of the Lake, Blind Bay. (I was instrumental in starting the council in Blind Bay, BC).

I have served on parish level in many capacities and on the diocesan level for many years. I served as a secretary and president on the parish level in the two communities, and on the diocesan level was Spiritual Development, Legislation and Organization Chairs and now as Kamloops Diocesan President

I am retired and live in Sorrento, BC. I am married and the mother of three adult daughters, I am also a grandmother of 3 children.

My career varied from being a middle-school teacher to a secretary in a law firm, and an administrative assistant at a health centre.

I am actively involved in the church as a lector, extraordinary minister of the eucharist, and a greeter. I am also on a team to serve coffee and goodies for fellowship after mass.

I attended lay formation studies for two years in the Diocese of Prince George. I followed that up with a Certificate of Theological Studies from Newman College in Edmonton. I have done workshops on prayer and Mary and have led bible studies in our parish.

I strongly believe in the Catholic Women’s League, to help us grow spiritually, to endorse teachings of the church, and advocate social justice from the parish level to the national level and the internationally.

Nelson Diocesan
President Sylvia Jurys neldp@bcyukoncwl.com

Learn more about Sylvia

Sylvia emigrated from Manchester, England in 1967 and held many interesting and challenging managerial positions with a major oil company until early retirement in 2004 and afterwards studied at the Fondation le Cordon Bleu and graduated with the Diplome de Cuisine le Cordon Bleu, and moved to West Kelowna to open a cooking school in her home.

In 1971, shortly after being married to Ray, she moved to a new parish and joined the Catholic Women’s League. Since then she has held most positions at the council level, was the communications chair at the diocesan level in Toronto with Betty Ann Brown (now Betty Ann Brown Davison) and now a past national president. Betty Ann was, and still is, a tremendous influence in mentoring the vision of the Catholic Women’s League of Canada as its members being a beautiful tapestry of women who work wholeheartedly for God and Canada.

Sylvia has served on the Nelson Diocesan Council as Resolutions Chair and President-Elect and Organization and was installed as President in 2016.

Sylvia is a founding member of REAL Women of Canada, and is currently a board member at Camp Quality Canada, a camp for children with cancer.

She is an active member at her home parish, Our Lady of Lourdes, in West Kelowna, and serves on the pastoral council, is the coordinator of the Ministers of the Word, and the altar server ministry, a lector, minister of the eucharist and a dedicated minister of communion to the sick.

Sylvia is passionate about the League and firmly believes that a personal invitation to potential new members is key, and in leading the league by example to encourage seasoned members to step up into leadership positions, will grow the league to its true strength over the next couple of years.

Prince George Diocesan
President Gemma Gillis pgdp@bcyukoncwl.com

Learn more about Gemma

Gemma came from England in 1966 to serve as a Frontier Apostle working for Bishop Fergus O’Grady. She began life in Canada teaching in the Catholic School in Fort St James. She married a few years later and despite being busy with young children joined the Catholic Women’s League Parish Council in Fraser Lake. A few years later the family moved to Vanderhoof and Gemma began to be more active in the League. During her time in Vanderhoof she served as Secretary, Christian Family Life Chair, Resolutions and Legislation Chair, Education and Health Chair, Vice-President and President. In 2007 she transferred to Smithers, where she was asked to take the position of Resolutions Chair and later Secretary. At this time she was appointed to serve on the Prince George Diocesan Council as Resolutions Chair. Upon completion of her term she was elected to serve as Legislation chair, then as Organization Chair, Vice-President and is now President of Prince George Diocesan Council.

Gemma spent many years as a teacher in the Catholic schools. For the last few years of her teaching career she was principal of St. Joseph’s Catholic School in Vanderhoof. She presently volunteers in the English language program, assisting newcomers to Canada with settlement and language. She is also active in parish ministry serving on the parish pastoral council. For many years she was responsible for sacramental preparation in her parish.

Gemma has seven children and fifteen grandchildren and loves to spend time visiting them all.

The League has been part of her life for many years. She feels blessed to be a part of this great sisterhood and all that it stands for.

Vancouver Diocesan
President Angelina Stiglich vdp@bcyukoncwl.com

Learn more about Angelina

Angelina is a second generation CWL member and remembers helping her mother at church events as a child. On her Parish CWL Council in Langley, BC she served as Secretary, Legislation Chair, Communications Chair, President Elect, President and Past-President. In 2011, She was elected to the Vancouver Diocesan Executive and served her first 2-year term as Resolutions Chair. She then went on to be Community Life Chair, President Elect and now President. Over her first 6 years on the Diocesan Executive, Angelina served as a Catch the Fire facilitator and served on the Anti-Human Trafficking Committee for the Archdiocese of Vancouver.

Angelina has participated in Reconciliation events and traces First Nations roots through her maternal grandmother. She has served on the Board of Directors for Domestic Abuse Services, Our Lady of Good Counsel Society and continues to work as a volunteer in the Society Thrift Store and at various fundraising events.

Angelina lives in Surrey, is married with 2 stepchildren and proud Aunt and Great-Aunt to more than 30 adults and children. She is a Senior Commercial Credit Advisor and People Manager with RBC and has worked in various positions in banking for 30 years.

Angelina loves the League and the gift of sisterhood it has brought to her life and is always enthusiastically promoting the League whenever she can.

Victoria Diocesan
President Maureen Ingram vicdp@bcyukoncwl.com

Learn more about Maureen

Maureen is the president of the Victoria Diocesan Council. Since joining the League in 2007 she has held the Legislation and Resolutions Chairs and as President at the parish level, and Education and Health, and Organization Chairs on the Diocesan Council.

Maureen is a retired RN who lives in Nanaimo, she has been married for 52 years, and is the mother of 2 adult children and 2 grandchildren.

Living on the coast has enabled her to participate in Dragon Boat races she now enjoys year-round recreational paddling with an outrigger team. Indoor hobbies include making fancy cards, puzzling with the dragon boat alumnae and crocheting prayer shawls.

She was a volunteer and Regional consultant for Birthright for many years.  She facilitated and participated in many Christopher Leadership Courses. Now she enjoys participating in, and organizing CWL workshops.  She serves as a Parliamentarian for professional organizations.

At her home parish, St. Peter’s, in Nanaimo, Maureen is active as an Extraordinary Minister of Communion and Minister of the Word, and home visits to bring Communion and friendship to the homebound is one of her favourite ministries.

The Catholic Women’s League of Canada never fails to present challenges to grow in faith and provide new opportunities to learn.  The organization also provides a school for living life more fully!

Whitehorse Diocesan
President Carol Vanderbyl wdp@bcyukoncwl.com

Learn more about Carol

The Catholic Women’s League has been a true blessing in her life. The stories of kids asking if they can have the cookie or is it for CWL relate to her own family for sure, but they will tell you they never felt resentful of her involvement, but were proud of her and happy for all the wonderful things she was privileged to do as a member, such as flying in a small plane to Ft Chipewyan in the NWT, or flying with Bishop Tom Lobsinger to Smithers. Carol is married 51 years and has 3 beloved grandchildren. She is retired and enjoys gardening, a little travel, getting together with family and friends.

Although she’s a homebody, CWL conventions and meetings are worth leaving home for. The liturgies, the speakers, the resolutions, the hugs from old friends, and the resolutions dialogues are all so uplifting.

The women of the League hold her deep respect, admiration and love. The Catholic Women’s League of Canada is changing so rapidly now, and the commitment to a position may seem formidable but the opportunities are so numerous for newcomers.

Carol has had many wonderful mentors and tries to do the same for others. She is a ‘career’ Diocesan President, having that job for more than 10 years total, and especially at mid-term meetings when the day’s work is done and it’s time to relax and laugh with her sister friends is more than memorable. It is good to know that the women on the Provincial Council are all ‘lifers’ who share the same faith and will hold you up no matter what happens.