Board of Directors

Jeff Pacheco – President

Photo - Jeff Pacheco

As Director of Sales for Oakwood Resort, Jeff Pacheco is responsible for the company’s strategic sales.  Developing sales initiatives to capture business, he has oversight of the company’s sales and marketing systems, revenue management, advertising and promotion, awareness campaigns and customer relationship management.

For the past 20 years, Jeff has been active in hospitality sales for several major brands within the industry. Before Oakwood, he was the National Sales Manager with Westmont Hospitality group, responsible for the strategic direction of the company’s National sports market, as well as Corporate markets throughout Canada. Previous to these positions, Mr. Pacheco served as a Regional sales manager with Westmont Hospitality, Director of Sales at the Station Park Hotel and Sales manager at the Delta London Armouries.

When he is not working, you can find him having fun with his two young boys, he is also the head coach of the Field Hockey team at Western University, in which this is his 17th year with the program. Jeff truly enjoys giving back to his passion – Sports. After playing Field Hockey as a Pro internationally it was time to find a career where he came back to London to start his studies.

Jeff Pacheco is a graduate of Fanshawe College in London, where he earned a Hospitality degree in Hotel and Restaurant Administration.

  • 2020 – President
  • 2019 – President

Doug Pedlar – Vice President

Doug-Pedlar-2014Doug Pedlar represents the real estate services sector and is a well-respected and long-serving local real estate Broker of Record, with RE/MAX Bluewater Realty.

Doug was the President of the London St. Thomas Association of Realtors in 2013 and is still involved with the Board, is an active Director of Townsend Meadows Seniors Development in Forest since 2007 and has real estate offices in Grand Bend, Parkhill, Exeter, Thedford and Lucan. Doug and his wife Jeannette have lived in the area most of their lives and have 3 sons with Mark and Garrett working with Doug in Grand Bend.

Hobbies: Travel, Golf, Stain Glass, Civic Activities: Children’s Miracle Network.

  • 2020 – Vice President
  • 2019 – Vice President
  • 2018 – Secretary
  • 2017 – Secretary
  • 2016 – Secretary
  • 2015 – Director
  • 2014 – Director

Glen Baillie – Past-President

Gglenbaillielen Baillie operates Baillie’s Picture Framing, a full service commercial framing operation. Glen started framing while studying for his economics degree at the University of Western Ontario and has not stopped since. In operation since 1988, the business moved to Grand Bend in 2004. In addition to his wife, Janette, he has two full time employees working all year.

Glen and Janette have four children, one still at home. He is active in the Lions club of Ailsa Craig and still plays men’s softball. He cheers for Toronto hockey and baseball teams, as it builds character.

Glen is founder of the annual Arts, Eats & Beats Studio Tour, Buskerfest (begun in 2013) and Summer Sunset Series (new in 2014) – and was instrumental in getting Grand Bend’s first Sidewalk Sale segment of our annual Thanksgiving Market event up and running. He has also played a fundamental role in developing dialogue with Lambton Shores Council relative to garnering financial support for tourism and visitor services performed by the Chamber for Lambton Shores.

  • 2020 – Past President
  • 2019 – Past President
  • 2018 – President
  • 2017 – President
  • 2016 – President
  • 2015 – Past President
  • 2014 – Past President
  • 2013 – President
  • 2012 – President
  • 2011 – Secretary

John Choma – Treasurer

JOHN CHOMAJohn started his career with BMO in 2012 and has done many roles within the Cambridge-Guelph, London and the Stratford-Woodstock markets. John was the Assistant Bank Manager at the Lucan branch and most recently at the Stratford location, before taking on the Manager role in Grand Bend. John has a passion for both the customer and employee experience and prides himself in being involved in every community he has worked in.

John holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from University of Waterloo and is certified with the Investment Funds Institute of Canada and Branch Compliance Officer certified.

In his spare time you will find John watching football, playing golf and spending family time with his wife, two dogs (Sawyer and Riley) and cat (Cali).

  • 2020 – Treasurer
  • 2019 – Treasurer
  • 2018 – Treasurer
  • 2017 – Treasurer

Veronica Brennan – Secretary

Veronica Brennan is the recipient of the 2015 Entrepreneur of the Year award and has built two highly successful and popular restaurant and mixed retail businesses located in Port Franks – Grog’s and MacPherson’s. Veronica brings to the Board two decades of business experience and a well-earned reputation for nurturing the next generation of employees. As well, Veronica is known for her long track record of community support.

  • 2020 – Secretary
  • 2019 – Secretary
  • 2018 – Secretary
  • 2018 – Director
  • 2017 – Director
  • 2016 – Director

Matt Dejong

Matt DeJongMatt Dejong and wife Julie owned and operated Pizza Delight for several years before selling the franchise and taking over Green Bucks Dollar Store in early 2015. Matt brings a wealth of restaurant and retail experience to the Board and most locals will recognize the DeJong family name as long time local business entrepreneurs.

  • 2020 – Director
  • 2019 – Director
  • 2018 – Director
  • 2017 – Director
  • 2016 – Director

Valante Karamoutzos

Photo - Valante KaramoutzosValante Karamoutzos is one of the area’s young entrepreneurs. The Karamoutzos family have owned and operated the Growling Gator for more than 12 years, and in 2018 completed construction of a multi-million-dollar mixed residential and commercial building at the foot of Main Street West in Grand Bend. Valante manages the Willie’s Beach Bar & Grill portion of this growing enterprise and brings a wealth of restaurant experience and knowledge to the Board despite.

  • 2020 – Director
  • 2019 – Director

Darren Boyle

Darren is the General Manager of 90.5 Exeter-Grand Bend’s myFM. His background before joining myFM has provided him a wide array of management experience in all size of businesses. Darren is an ardent supporter of the Grand Bend area having been a local for his entire life. Being an active community volunteer for various organizations over the years means he understands the critical mission and purpose of having a strong Chamber of Commerce to support the growth and success of local community businesses. He has proudly been a Director since starting with myFM in September of 2019.

  • 2020 – Director
  • 2019 – Director

Susan Mills – Manager

Susan Mills first arrived in Grand Bend as a teenage tourist and in the succeeding 30 years visited Grand Bend & Area annually on vacation. In 2008, Susan made her escape from the Greater Toronto Area to Grand Bend permanently by starting her own business and joining the Chamber as a member. In November 2010, Susan became the new General Manager of the Chamber.

Susan graduated from Toronto’s Wexford Collegiate School for the Arts in 1983 and from York University in 1990 (Honours B.A. in Mass Communications & English). Her marketing and communications career includes stints at The Canadian Red Cross Society, Allstate Insurance and York University. In 1996, Susan helped pave the Internet superhighway with her contribution towards Allstate Canada’s first website. In the succeeding 10 years, she played a key role in the ongoing online branding, e-marketing and innovation of Allstate online (Canada’s first fully e-commerce insurance website).