John Meguerian


When John was seven years old, he and his parents moved to Canada for a better life. Knowing no English or French, John concentrated on his school work and success. After graduating from college he went into the automation engineering field where he used his training to design, implement, and startup process equipment for the lumber, oil and gas, and mining industries. This required John to collaborate with other engineering disciplines to gather the necessary inputs for process control.


As a facilitator and a manager, John has been able to leverage his success in team building, collaboration, customer coordination to his volunteer work.


John has held various leadership roles in engineering, as well as a member on numerous Boards such as Boy Scouts Canada, CARP Niagara, Third Age Learning Niagara, Age Friendly Niagara Network, and various peer review panels. Niagara will continue to attract older adults for various reasons one of which is the quality of life and that can only get better with exploring intellectual stimulation with an organization like Third Age Learning.

Tina Tytko


Tina was born and raised in the Niagara region. She holds two diplomas from Niagara College in Recreation and Leisure Services (1999) and Therapeutic Recreation (2015). As well, a Bachelor of Recreation and Leisure Studies degree with honours from Brock University (2017). She is a professional member of Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO) and a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS).

Tina has always had an entrepreneurial spirit. Upon graduation from Brock, Tina opened Thrive Therapeutic Recreation where she enjoys working as a private practitioner and consultant. She is also a part-time professor at Niagara College in Therapeutic Recreation and is on the Board for the TRO 2019 Conference Planning Committee. Tina is passionate about her community and about making life in Niagara better for everyone. Through her involvement with Third Age Learning Niagara, Tina hopes to make learning accessible and exciting for members of the community who are in their Third Age.

Carolyn Triemstra

Board Member

Carolyn holds a Masters of Educational Leadership through Yorkville University and a Bachelor of Recreation and Leisure Studies from Brock University. Carolyn has been employed with Niagara College since 2002. As a full-time professor in the Recreation and Leisure Services (RLS) program (2002-2009), the associate dean of Allied Health (2009-2015) and currently as the dean of Community and Health Studies. Prior to commencing employment with Niagara College, she worked at St Joseph’s Healthcare, Hamilton, where she held various clinical Recreation Therapy (RT) roles. Carolyn’s expertise focuses on Therapeutic Recreation, Interprofessional Education & Practice and Aging. Her professional Involvement includes Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO); Age Friendly Niagara Network; and serving on the Niagara Connects Board. Carolyn is currently involved with various Interprofessional opportunities and Age Friendly initiatives across the Niagara Region. Carolyn is an innovator and collaborator and has been instrumental in developing a sustainable interprofessional partnerships across the community involving Niagara College.

Valerie Grabove

Board Member

Valerie Grabove has enjoyed a 35 year professional career as professor, facilitator, leader, administrator, author, consultant, and theatre director/actor. Recently retired as Chair, Organizational Development at Niagara College, Valerie now directs her energy to consulting and facilitating for educational and non-profit organizations and is a program facilitator/coach for the Leadership Academy, an international leadership development program for higher education leaders.

Education includes doctoral studies (Theory & Policy Studies – Higher Education), University of Toronto; M.Ed., Brock University; B.Ed. in Theatre and Communication Arts, U of T; and a B.A. in Psychology, University Western Ontario.

Research/development interests are in transformational learning and development; organizational development; faculty and curriculum development; and learner-centered, reflective and innovative facilitation.

In her “other” life, Valerie is an enthusiastic foodie, and President of Slow Food Niagara, part of a growing international movement.  As part of her commitment to environmental issues, she is Vice President/ founding member of Trout Unlimited Canada, Niagara Chapter, a conservation group.

In her spare time, Valerie enjoys theatre, fly fishing, canoe tripping, dog sledding, wine tasting, learning and traveling.

Marylou Hilliard

Board Member

During a 25-year stellar career in advertising, Marylou Hilliard earned a reputation as a tireless brand champion. She has held senior strategic management positions with BBDO, Lintas Worldwide, Arnold Worldwide and Scali McCabe Sloves where she led global Agency teams to deliver against client marketing, communication and sponsorship needs. Marylou has marketing and sponsorship experience with many clients who target the 50+ population including BMO and TD Bank Financial Groups, Bayer Pharmaceutical, Psychology Foundation of Canada, the Canadian Skin Care Foundation. Marylou enjoyed a multi-year relationship with the International Federation on Ageing, leading their rebranding efforts and providing communication expertise for various creative initiatives. Marylou spearheaded development of an “End Ageism” social movement campaign. Her passion to help people 50+ improve their lives and create an Age-Friendly world is unrelenting. Marylou is also a member of the Age-Friendly Niagara Network leadership team and a Certified Coach Practitioner.

Ann Hossack

Board Member

Ann Hossack is a graduate of the University of Toronto with an Honours Bachelor of Arts – Psychology and Bachelor of Education degrees. Ann is an experienced senior database and marketing expert.  She began her career in brand management with Pepsi-Cola and held senior database marketing roles at companies including  American Express, Royal Bank and as Vice President & General Manager at DDB Canada, where she launched a multi-million dollar business with services including database marketing, management and analytics. Ann has extensive experience working with older audiences promoting financial services, travel and tourism, healthcare and retirement communities.  While many see an aging population as a problem, Ann believes that the 50+ cohort can positively impact the Canadian economy by maximizing their skills, talents, knowledge and buying power.

Karen McGrath

Board Member

Karen retired from her position as Director Library and Bookstore Services at Niagara College in 2016, capping off a 30 year career as a professional librarian and more recently as a Certified Executive Coach. That career included over 20 years in Ottawa in progressively more responsible managerial positions at the National Library of Canada, (now Library and Archives Canada) finishing there as the Executive Advisor to then National Librarian, Roch Carrier.
She arrived in Niagara in 2003, where she held the position of CEO first at the Lincoln Public Library and then at the Niagara on the Lake Public Library before moving to Niagara College. She had the unique opportunity after retiring, to work for a year in Saudi Arabia through Niagara College, at a women’s technical college In Madinah. She is now home enjoying her time volunteering as the Chair of the Mentoring Committee with the Ontario Library Association, mentoring and coaching up and coming librarians, volunteering with Third Age Learning Niagara, and finding time to travel whenever she can. Like her colleagues on the Board, she believes that learning never stops and one can never be too curious. She is pleased that Third Age Learning now has a chapter in Niagara and looks forward to assisting in the development of very unique and interactive learning opportunities for Niagarans.