Board of Directors
Michele Newton President Making Change -

Michèle Newton

President/Acting Chair - Making Change | Speaker | Panellist


Michèle Newton is guided by her “better together” philosophy - growing relationships, nurturing collaborations and facilitating partnerships, especially those with a shared focus on strengthening our community. As a community changemaker, she created Our Mosaic Lives - a passion project exploring diversity and inclusion, launched Community Conversations – a live D&I interview series, and co-founded Making Change.


Michèle writes and contributes a monthly Diversity and Inclusion column featured across’s seven publications.  She is a Board member with the Barrie Community Foundation and a member of the Black Community Council with Simcoe Muskoka Family Connexions.  Michèle is a Director with Konvo Media, a black-owned public relations agency, and is a Mentor with the Henry Bernick Entrepreneurship Centre. She was recognized in 2020 as one of 100 Accomplished Black Canadian Women for her community work focused on Black Canadian Women, diversity and inclusion

Shelly Skinner Director Making Change -

Shelly Skinner

Director/Secretary - Making Change | Speaker | Panellist


Shelly Skinner, is a community changemaker and  an event planner entrepreneur, with a focus on not-for-profit community fundraising and development. Shelly co-founded Making Change, and founded UPlift BLACK, two non-profit organizations. A member of the Women & Children’s Shelter of Barrie Women’s Advocacy Council, she has also fundraised and planned events for both the shelter and Redwood Park Communities. Shelly has spoken at numerous BLM and other rallies and conferences across Simcoe County and the GTA.


Shelly is a board member with Ethnic Mosaic Alliance and was formerly Vice President of the Board with Barrie Pride. Recognized with the Heart & Soul Award 2020 from the Barrie Chamber of Commerce for improving her community and the lives of women, children and marginalized groups, Shelly also received the Leading Women, Leading Girls Building Communities Award 2018. On International Women's Day 2019, Barrie360 named Shelly "1 of 8 Notable Women Who Have Made an Impact In Our Community".

Stephanie Gourlie

Director - Making Change | Speaker | Panellist


Stephanie Gourlie is recognized as a strategic, creative and integrated thinker with over 15 years of experience in Human Resource Management, Sales and Marketing Relations and Creative Ideation & Productivity.  As a results-driven business lead, Stephanie has led multidisciplinary teams in the development of strategic change and organizational transformation across a range of teams, partners and clients. Stephanie has a passion for developing her successful and expanding businesses Discount Granite Plus & The Tile, Flooring & Design Co.. She continues to be involved in community organizations and initiatives working to see diversity and inclusion efforts continue to be incorporated into businesses and institutions across the county and beyond.


Stephanie was elected to sit on the Board of Directors for the Barrie Chamber of Commerce. She is an active member of Women in Construction, Young Leaders In Construction and volunteers with the Women & Children’s Shelter.  Stephanie organized the Making Change Voices of Black Women in Business Panel in 2020, and has joined the organization as a Director.

Board Recruitment

 Making Change is recruiting additional board members. Here's an overview of the requirements. Please contact us for more information.

Purpose of the Corporation

1. Educate the general public about racial prejudice and discrimination through seminars and workshops
2. Organize and implement conferences, workshops and other symposia about institutional and individual forms of racism, discrimination, and stereotyping
3. Host discussion groups open to the public that raise awareness of racism and model alternatives to stereotyping and prejudice
4. Establish and maintain peer support groups among members of the Black community as well as members of the public to address issues of discrimination and the elimination of racism
5. Participate in and support a network made up of organizations supporting anti-Black racism and promoting positive race relations aims in order to share research, informational materials, or expertise and act as a resource to groups interested in developing these capacities
6. Organize and host activities meant to expose members of the general public to Black culture

Ontario, Canada

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