Welcome to the very first Guelph Estate Planning Council article.  As a group that was formed in early 2018, we are excited to formally announce our council’s arrival in the Royal City.

Now as a reader, I am sure you are wondering “What exactly is the Guelph Estate Planning Council?” You might also be wondering “Why do I care that you are here?”

We asked these exact same questions when we first met to discuss the future of our council.  Many months were spent articulating what our purpose was and what our mission is.  We talked about mission and vision so much that they became one word! “Mission” We came up with the very formal vision statement for our long-term goals:

A local trusted resource group that is relied upon for expert advice on the many aspects of estate planning and estate administration.

And our Mission statement to accomplish our vision statement is:

Collaborating professionally with trusted partners while educating the community with reliable resources.

What does that mean exactly?  Well, here’s the truth of the matter, we got a group of extremely passionate people together who also happen to be experts in all facets of care planning, estate planning, transition and estate administration.   Simply put, we are the community’s trusted resource group for all stages of life…and after.

As a group, we were starting to see a need for a safe place that community members could turn to for information, trusted professional contact information and local seminars on the topics that are weighing heavily on family’s minds.  We also saw that there is a need for a local resource group specifically for professionals to collaborate and network with others who work in the “all stages of care planning and estates” world.

For the last year, our council has been building a strong foundation brick by brick.  We have created a website, committees, goals and internal seminars.  John F Kennedy said, “ Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other” and trust me, this group of members are eager to learn and grow, making them well-respected leaders in our community.  During the year of building our council, we have created an incredible bond, learning what each other does and how they do it has produced a level of trust that is not easily created.  I know that when I ask for advice from a fellow council member… I can trust it.  I also know that if I refer a client to a member of the council that they will be taken care of the same way that I would take care of them.

Our next phase for the council is opening up general membership for professionals in the community.  This will allow other professionals who are just as passionate as us to share in a monthly educational forum in order to keep us up to date on all things in this realm.  Not to mention meeting new contacts and friends is always a welcome activity.

The council is also taking things to the next level by launching a public phase for our community members in 2020.  Hoping to change the landscape surrounding planning, implementing and executing all stages of life, we are aiming to break barriers and dissipate stigma around the conversations of death. 

This brings me to the “Why should you care” portion.  Imagine that you and your family are in need of guidance through a difficult situation.  That is a lot of stress without even beginning to think about all the places and people you will need to meet with in order to ensure that everything is taken care of in a manner that is best for your family.  What if you could search for a trusted place to go to in your community?  Would that help you breathe easier? Perhaps even get the ball rolling a little quicker as you could find exactly who you need for your situation.

We imagine Guelph being a leading community for care planning, estate planning, transition and estate administration in Ontario, if not all of Canada.  We dream for households that communicate openly about their wealth transfer, health care wishes and expectations for their appointed individuals.  We strive for a community that looks at every stage of life with proactive solutions instead of reactive fixes.  We aspire to have a group of professionals involved with the council who are local trusted experts and you can easily find them when you need a place to turn.

Our core council members are made up from professionals in every corner of life that you may need.  Let me introduce you to them!

Debbie Stanley
Trust & Estate Consultan
ETP Canada

Jaime Power
Financial Planner
Investors Grou

Jessica Kristensen
Miller Thomson

Jennifer Hall
Vice President of Foundation
St. Joseph’s Hospital

Chris Willard
Executive Director
Guelph Community Foundation

Alex Di Lello
Tax Manager

Wendy Smith
SWOT Service

Laura Greenway-Balnar
Care Office Owner
Right at Home Service

Robin-Lee Norris

Tim Boulton
Registered Psychotherapist
Walking With You Counselling

Cam Skipper
Funeral Director
McIntyre & Wilkie Funeral Home -Gilchrist Chapel

I have to admit, working with these professionals has been exciting and we are looking forward to becoming a strong presence here in Guelph.  We do hope that you will keep in touch and continue to read our articles.  Stay tuned for articles, announcements, and events that will be coming soon!

2 thoughts on “Introducing the Guelph Estate Planning Council!

  1. Thank you for creating this forum and I look forward to consulting with you re: my Advanced Care Plans.
    Heidi Klaming


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