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Meet Our Board Of Directors

The Community Futures Northwest Alberta team is powered by its Board of Directors. Our board members really care about the community and understand the challenges of owning a business. If you are interested in joining our board please review our Board Member Orientation Manual.

Meet our Board of Directors:

Chair Walter Sarapuk

Rocky Lane, Mackenzie County

Vice Chair Willie Wheeler

La Crete, Mackenzie County

Secretary/Treasurer Clark McAskile

Town of High Level

Jan Welke, Board Member

Town of High Level

Bill Boese, Board Member

Fort Vermilion, Mackenzie County

Tim Driedger, Board Member

La Crete, Mackenzie County

Don Werner, Board Member

Town of Rainbow Lake

Willie Wieler

Board Member

Willie has a background in retail industry. He has 35-plus years of retail business experience as a frontline employee and as a manager. Just as he felt challenged and rewarded dealing with customers in his various capacities in the retail industry, he also believed community work to be fulfilling.

He has been involved with volunteer community groups since the early 90s. He also served in the municipal government for five years.

He joined Community Futures to make a positive difference in the business environment in the region and to help build a better community for tomorrow.

He is always interested in new ideas, processes, and practices, and he believes that if each person contributes a little, everyone benefits.

The vibrant community he now lives in reminds him of his grandparents who arrived in the northwestern part of Alberta in the middle of 1930s with only two things: hope for the future and a willingness to work hard.

Back then, there were no infrastructures and no services like what Community Futures offers. Willie believes that this country, province, and regions were built on the faith, sacrifices, and hardships of the early pioneers who refused to quit. So, his guidance for entrepreneurs and small business owners facing challenges is this: Never quit.

Willie also lives by the quote, "I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it" by Charles Swindoll.

Michelle Farris

Board Member
Mayor of Rainbow Lake

Michelle Farris is the Mayor of the Town of Rainbow Lake. She has been involved with the Municipal Council for 10 years with the last five years dedicated solely to Council and committees.

Michelle joined the Board because of her passion in helping residents and businesses thrive, especially in uncertain and troubling times.

Originally from Nova Scotia, Michelle has been living in Alberta for 25 years. She loves to travel, go camping, do some gardening, and read in her spare time.

Having been born on April 1st, one of Michelle's favorite expressions is, "What is your excuse? I was born on Fool’s Day."

Are You A Prominent Member Of Our Business Community And Looking To Make A Difference?

Impact the growth of our community and join our board. We’re always looking for great people to help better our business community here in Northwest Alberta and offer new growth opportunities to Northwest Alberta based entrepreneurs.

Contact Us

Box 210
9802 99 Street
High Level, AB  T0H 1Z0
P: (780) 926-4233


Communities Served

Rainbow Lake, Zama City, High Level, Paddle Prairie, Fort Vermilion, La Crete, Steen River, Chateh, Meander River, Buffalo Head Prairie, Garden River, John D’or, Fox Lake