our Board of Directors

Foundation History

July 25, 2015 - Nelina, at 4 years old,was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer, DIPG (Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma) and our lives forever changed


November 2015 - DIPG Cancer Awareness Campaign is started and fundraising begins.


October 2016, SickKids recognizes our fundraising efforts raising over $48,000 for DIPG research and a tribute to Nelina is placed on the Sponsors Wall.


Dec 8, 2016, - After 10 months of planning and paperwork, Nelina's Hope becomes a legal entity.


January 19th, 2017 - Nelina's Hope website is launched in her memory and  becomes a registered charity.


December 2017 - Nelina's Hope makes the 1st grant of $35,000 for pediatric brain cancer research - Recipients Dr Hawkins and Dr. Huang


December 2018 - The Gift of Hope Small Grant Recipient - Dr. Vijay Ramaswamy $20,000

Linda is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA), CGA and a Certified Association Executive (CAE) who has held executive financial and administration roles, including Chief Executive Officer (CEO), in both public multi-national insurance companies and private organizations.  Linda is currently the Director, Finance and Operations at Parachute Leaders in Injury Prevention, a Canadian registered charity devoted to preventing injuries and saving lives.  Linda has served in volunteer leadership positions as director, board committee chair and vice-chair of the board, with a variety of non-profit / association organizations and brings strong financial and non-profit governance expertise to our board.


Linda has resided in Georgetown, Ontario for the past 18 years and, when not working, enjoys a variety of sports (safely!) and reading.

Our founder

Heather MacPherson

Candice has worked for the Correctional Services of Canada for 17 years in various interventions roles.  She graduated as a Behavioural Science Technologist from St. Lawrence College and earned a BA in Psychology from the University of Waterloo.  


Candice brings a different perspective to her role on the Board, coming from a social services field. She has actively participated in various fundraiser activities for Nelina's Hope and she looks forward to taking on this new challenge.


In her spare time Candice enjoys soccer, reading and various crafting projects. 

Heather is a change management leader, inspiring people to live enriched lives to the fullest. After losing her 6-year-old daughter in early 2016, Heather is an advocate for DIPG research (a rare and fatal brain cancer) and is the founder of Nelina’s Hope, a public foundation dedicated to raising awareness and funds for pediatric brain cancer research that was granted charitable status in early 2017. Heather is currently the Financial Controller for Nando's Canada, a global food restaurant chain. Heather has BAH degree from Queens University and is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CGA) who has a breadth of business knowledge across a variety of sectors including restaurants, marketing, digital publications and education.  


In her spare time, she enjoys spin class, baking and collecting and painting bird houses.  

Becoming a part of the DIPG brain cancer community is such a tragedy for any family but we are strong and working together for a cure. Previous generations were not able to make any progress with this disease and now is the time for change, advancement in medical treatments and improvement in survival rates of this deadly cancer.

Nelina's Hope will be a foundation that funds pediatric brain cancer research to provide hope for future generations.




Candice Lee
Vice Chair