About Us

Proudly serving Elgin, Middlesex, and Oxford counties since 1997

Who We Are

The Elgin Middlesex Oxford Workforce Planning and Development Board works to provide stakeholders with quality labour market information to make decisions which result in a thriving, viable economy.

Our aim is to help improve the coordination of community responses to labour market issues and needs.

We do this by:

  • Developing and executing programs to meet the needs of employers and job seekers
  • Putting forth action plans and data reports that are local and current
  • Teaching our audience how to make best use of labour market information
  • Working with employers to identify their current and emerging skills needs
  • Sharing information with current job seekers, local employment services, and with future job seekers (students) through formal education systems
  • Connecting with, advising on, and contributing to other organization’s initiative committees

The Elgin Middlesex Oxford Workforce Planning and Development Board is one of 26 organizations across the province forming the Workforce Planning Ontario network.

Our Team

Emilian Siman, Executive Director

For a span of several years, Emilian dedicated his expertise as the Senior Data Analyst at EMOWPDB. Beginning April 1, 2022, a thrilling development occurred as he was promoted to the position of Executive Director. This transition brought excitement not only to Emilian but also to the entire staff at the Workforce Planning Board.

Emilian’s extensive background in research and data analytics proves to be invaluable in tackling new evidence-based projects undertaken by the EMOWPDB. His wealth of knowledge in this realm empowers him to navigate complex initiatives with precision and insight. Furthermore, Emilian’s profound understanding of Labour Market Information contributes significantly to fostering meaningful community conversations surrounding workforce planning and development within the London Economic Region. His expertise serves as a catalyst for driving informed decision-making and shaping the future of the local workforce.

Emilian is originally from Romania, he speaks French and loves to travel. He is off making memories with his wife and daughter whenever he gets the chance, adding to his vast knowledge that only lived experiences can provide.


Jane Kempe, Office Administrator (part-time)

Jane has worked with the EMOWPDB since 2005. She is a valued member of our team and one of the first faces you’ll see if you visit us in the office. Within her role, Jane adeptly manages diverse administrative and bookkeeping tasks, ensuring the smooth operation of our daily functions. Additionally, Jane takes on the responsibility of serving as the Project Coordinator for the Oxford Invitational Youth Robotics Challenge.

During her leisure hours, Jane enjoys spending time with her husband and family, going for walks, bird watching, and relaxing by the water in Port Stanley and Grand Bend.


Bashir Adeyemo, Labour Market Research Lead

At EMOWPDB, Bashir holds the position of our trusted Data Analyst. Over the past few years, he has diligently crafted a solid reputation as a reliable and meticulous expert in LMI (Labor Market Information). Bashir’s innovative thinking sets him apart, as he consistently goes the extra mile to ensure exceptional outcomes. When you seek a positive perspective, Bashir is the person to approach. Apart from his core responsibilities, he actively participates in multiple advisory committees and plays a pivotal role in driving key deliverables, such as the EmployerOne survey.

Bashir commits to a positive attitude, no matter what the obstacles or outcomes may be. He’s from Nigeria, he’s a loving father and husband, enjoys playing soccer, and is a life-long learner.


Angelique Guerard, Communications Officer

Angelique graduated from Fanshawe’s Broadcast Journalism program in April of 2022. During her time at Fanshawe, she was hired on as a full-time reporter for 106.9 the X. While working, she covered a multitude of sensitive breaking news stories as they happened in the community. These valuable experiences in journalism became the cornerstone of Angelique’s passion for communications as a professional path. Presently, Angelique assumes the responsibility of overseeing EMOWPDB’s communication materials. Her role encompasses a wide range of tasks, including managing social media platforms, designing reports, ensuring website updates, and more.

Angelique cherishes the simplicity of life, whether it’s spending quality time with her loved ones, engrossing herself in the pages of a captivating book, or enjoying the company of her magnificent 16-year-old rescue Chow Chow, Lana.


Our Board of Directors

Frances Shamley, Chair

“As a community-oriented person, I believe that when we work together and collaborate with one another, amazing things happen.

Projects that may have seemed impossible happen because of our partnerships and community-driven initiatives. This requires of us that we listen to one another and recognize the skills and energies that each partner brings to the table. When we utilize these strengths in developing our programs in innovative ways, all of our communities benefit.

The Elgin Middlesex Oxford Workforce Planning and Development Board works to bring our diverse partners together in as many ways as possible, to try to sustain a healthy and active labour force that works to provide employment and employment-related services for our community members.

As a mediator and an educator, I fully support that work. As a Board member, I am proud to be a member of this organization and work with such talented people.”

Jean-Pierre Cantin, Vice-Chair

Jean-Pierre Cantin retired as the Executive Director of Carrefour Communautaire Francophone de London, a community organization serving the Francophone community in London and surrounding areas.

Previously, he was the Programs and Services Director for Central South-West Region for Collège Boréal in charge of Employment and Immigration Services.

Dan Fish, Director

Dan was an Automotive Vehicle Technician prior to working for the Thames Valley District School Board.

He has worked for the Thames Valley District School board for the past 29 years.

Currently, Dan is serving as a Learning Coordinator for Tech, Co-op and SHSM.

He takes great pride in offering excellent support for schools, programs and teachers to support the learning opportunities for students.

Doug Butler, Secretary

Doug currently volunteers with various community groups in the Elgin-St. Thomas area. He previously worked with the United Way Elgin Middlesex as a Community Impact Coordinator after volunteering on the Board of the United Way Elgin-St. Thomas including two terms as President.

Doug has worked in the automotive manufacturing sector, for the Southwest Economic Alliance as an outreach coordinator, and with the United Way Waterloo Region as a Workplace Development Officer.

As a Hermie Kreuger Memorial Award winner, Doug’s passion to better the lives of our communities is recognized. As an honours graduate of the Addictions and Community Services Program at London’s Everest College, Doug is familiar with the needs of various populations. His community commitment was established through two decades of volunteering with a wide range of groups, and on various projects that supported community building.

Lisa Schwerzmann, Director

Associate Dean – Fanshawe College

School of Access Studies and Regional Delivery


Abdoulaye Sako, Treasurer

Regional Manager – Collège Boréal 

Kim Whitehead, Director

General Manager – Woodstock Chamber of Commerce

Sharon Devries, Director

Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program OYAP Coordinator/Recruiter – Thames Valley District School Board

Jack Smit, Municipal Representative

Jack is very pleased to join the Workforce Planning board as an ex officio member representing the City of London Social and Health Development.  As the Manager of Employment Strategies, Life Stabilization for the City, Jack’s work focuses on strategic responses, community involvement, partnership development and on attaining employment outcomes. As part of this role, Jack works with community partners related to employment and supports for individuals on their path towards employment.

Prior to joining the City, Jack has worked for many years in Employment; as a career counsellor at Youth Opportunities Unlimited, a business advisor at the Small Business Centre as well as Business Manager at Family Service Thames Valley promoting positive mental health in the workplace.

Jack received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Wilfrid Laurier University, Bachelor of Education from the University of Toronto and a designation as Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA – CMA).

Who We Work With