Board Members

Current members

Sarah Popoff

I’m Sarah Popoff. I’m retired and like to give back to the community, so I volunteer my time at CFHC Wellness Centre, Seniors Coordinating Society, Nelson Share, Kidney Foundation, Salvation Army, and Eagles.

Debby Zeeben

As a founding member of Community First Health Co-op, I am committed to continuing to explore and build solutions for healthier communities as a board member of this dynamic organization.

Eric Ramsden

I have been fortunate, since 2010, to be part of the Community First Health Cooperative volunteer team with 10 of those years as an active board member. In
addition, I am able to participate as a board member on both the Nelson and District Seniors Co-ordinating Society and the West Kootenay Community TEETH

I am looking forward to, hopefully, rejoining the board this year. During my time on the board, I have been lucky enough to work on the successful social media campaign to secure $50,000 for the TEETH Low-Cost Dental Clinic, continue our work toward providing affordable housing to our community, sharing health education opportunities with our residents as well as having an opportunity to work as media liaison.

Jayme Lebedow


Georgia Argyle

Georgia Argyle joined the CFHC Board of Directors in 2020 to have the opportunity to work with the founding members and to participate in the important work the CFHC does. As the owner/operator of Thrive Tutoring Services and Community Education and Support Services, Georgia has been advocating for services to support the diverse education needs of Nelson and area students. Joining the CFHC Board is another way in which she is hoping to help students find the support they need to navigate the complex world they live in. As a member of the Board, Georgia will be advocating for youth and helping secure resources and support programs for them.

Doug Stoddart

I have retired after dedicating my working career to the financial industry, including 24 years as Chief Executive Officer of the Nelson & District Credit Union (NDCU). I understand the financial needs of businesses and communities, as well as low, mid & high-income individuals.

Encouraging innovation, NDCU won 3 awards for innovation including the prestigious National Credit Union award. NDCU was also awarded the Chamber of Commerce ‘Member of the Year’ award and won 2 national marketing awards.

I support collaboration and was actively involved in the start-up and growth of corporations in insurance, wealth management, technology, and regulatory industries.

In the mid-90’s, I was a Board member of the Nelson & Area Economic Development Committee and served as Chair. I was a board member of a Vancouver technology company for 7 years. I was elected to the Provincial Board of Directors by Kootenay Credit Unions. The provincial board elected me to the national Board of Directors to represent British Columbia. I was subsequently elected to the World Council of Credit Unions and represented Canada internationally.

I am a college graduate, an Associative of the Institute of Canadian Bankers (AICB), and a founding member of the Accredited Mortgage Professional (AMP) program. I studied under Steven Covey at the Covey Leadership Center in Utah.


Pegasis McGauley
(Vice Chair)

I was a founder of Community First Health Co-op and Save Our Services (now Nelson Area Society for Health) in 2002. I have been on both Boards ever since. NASH is a member of the B.C. Health Coalition and the B.C. Rural Health Network, which works to amplify the rural voice on healthcare. NASH is now a committee of Community First Health Co-op. I have been active with Connected Communities, the West Kootenay coalition of health advocacy groups, also since 2002. Before COVID we met twice a year with IH administrators to raise community and patient concerns.

I helped start TEETH, the low-income dental clinic, in 2014 and am Co-Chair. I served 7 years as Alternate Director for Area E on the Central Kootenay Regional District Board and continue to attend Hospital Board meetings. I was one of two patient representatives on Interior Health’s Kootenay-Boundary Home Health Working Group.

I am retired from 23 years’ work in a group home for adults with disabilities. Before that, I was a programmer and systems analyst with big mainframe computers. I have a grown daughter, 2 grandchildren, and a wonderful woman partner of more than 30 years.

But my real work is political action, trying to improve our society. For the last 20 years, I have focused particularly on health care.

Past members


Madeline Collins has a background in Public Health and Project Management. She has experience working in primary healthcare organizations in Australia focusing on improving access to health services, supporting health professionals and coordinating primary healthcare delivery. She also has a background in research with a focus on the continuum of care for maternal, newborn and child health, participating in research projects in Indonesia and rural Australia. She looks forward to volunteering with the Community First Health Co-op. 

Letter from the Chair

Dear Members, On behalf of the board of Community First Health Co-op, I would like to extend our greatest appreciation for your work to fulfill the communities’ vision for a community health center where people work together to achieve the best possible health outcomes and quality of life for the area residents.

The Nelson and Area Wellness and Education Centre works to support individuals and families through a team approach. The Centre offers prenatal care, support for babies and their families, emerging emotional and health issues, increasing access to dental care, chronic health challenges including pain and addiction, chiropractic care, massage, acupuncture, Chinese medicine expertise, employment training and opportunities (known to be a major determinant of good health). The collaboration of over 50 health-related service professionals in our centre is committed to your wellbeing.

The operation of the Nelson and Area Wellness and Education Centre heralds the heights that can be achieved when people work for concern for community – the seventh principle of co-ops. The vibrant, shared vision for wellness is supported by the participation of over 70 volunteers from all lifestyles. Architects, engineers, backhoe operators, pavers, plumbers, electricians, HVAC specialists, real estate agents, accountants, financial advisers, surveyors, The Nelson and District Credit Union, The Kootenay Co-op Country Store, 17 organizations and volunteers of the Community Resource and Education Centre and all of the practices and services at Community First Health Co-op.

Your work to build the communities’ vision is visited regularly at by people in neighboring communities, provinces, and indeed, the world.

This is your Health Co-op where your voice is valued. Your ideas and suggestions are welcomed at any board meeting, which meets when needed and usually on Mondays at the Health Co-op. Please contact [email protected]. Suggestions can also be slid under the door of the Co-op’s office on the main floor (through the lobby, turn left, first door on left).

Congratulations to all members! You are doing remarkable work to create healthy solutions for healthy communities. Your participation is the key to Community First Health Co-op’s work.


Debby Zeeben, Chair

Corporate Members

  • Nelson Rotary Club
  • Drs. Tandi Wilkinson, Leah Seaman & Martha Wilson
  • Poulin Agencies Ltd. - Maurice Poulin
  • Academy of Classical Oriental Sciences - Warren Fischer
  • Comfort & Joy - Dr. Michael Culham Inc. - Michael Culham
  • Heritage Inn - Ryan Martin
  • Jennie's Garden - Jennie Ash
  • Kiwanis Club of Nelson - Sidney Wapple
  • Berg Naqvi Lehmann
  • Nelson & District Chamber of Commerce
  • Civic Auto Repair - Henry Reimer
  • Nelson & District Senior's Citizen's Association - Lucy Methuen
  • Balfour & District Senior's Citizen's Association
  • Whitewater Ski Resort - Mike Adams
  • Linda Kalbun Consulting
  • St Johns Ambulance Nelson

*If you are a corporate member who would like to be listed, please let us know.

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