Our Forward House Teams

Our Direct Support Professionals

Forward House recognizes the value and importance of our Direct Support Professionals who are the heart of our organization. They are the team leaders and team members who work day and night to ensure the excellence of our services and supports.

Avatars Diversity

Our Leadership

Everyday we strive to make decisions which reflect our Vision and Mission. As a team, we have been able to both remember the history of our people and organization as well as working towards a better future together. We take pride in knowing the people and providing the individualized supports which allow them to thrive.

Tate Lincoln


Tate has been a Manager of various residential programs since 2006 after working as a Direct Support Professional at Forward House from 1995-2005. Interestingly, he completed one of his placements at Forward House before graduating from the Developmental Services Diploma program. Tate spent years providing supports for individuals with acquired brain injuries. He has also completed a management certificate at Western. On his days off, Tate can be found fly fishing in the Thames River.

Shannon Marsh


Shannon joined the management team in 2020. She started with Forward House in 1998 and was in a team leadership role at various locations for 20 year so offers a wealth of knowledge about working as a Direct Support Professional. Shannon is a Manager of several residential locations and a Developmental Services program graduate from Fanshawe College. In her spare time, Shannon and her family have fundraised extensively for a charitable organization close to their hearts.

Eric Everett


Eric began working with Forward House while he was obtaining his Developmental Services diploma in 2004. He worked as a Direct Support professional for many years and during this time he provided leadership within the CUPE Executive.  As a team leader, he helped to open two new residences and is a first aid instructor.   Eric has worked as a lifeguard and on a neuro-behavioural rehab unit.   He has been working towards a Certificate in Not-For-Profit Management.  He joined the management team permanently in 2022.  In his personal life, he is an aquafit instructor and a proud father.

Lisa Tapp

Director of Training and Community Resources

Lisa started working with Forward House in 1989 after successfully completing her Developmental Service Worker diploma from Fanshawe College. Lisa originally worked as a Support Worker at our Community Integration day program, before initiating a move to home-based supports. She has been a Manager since 1996. Lisa’s current role includes the management of various residential locations including several supported independent living residences. She manages the Forward House Passport Program for clients who do not receive residential supports and liaises with a group of other agencies in the Thames Valley who address community needs in our area. Many years ago, Lisa helped a family successfully pioneer a unique support circle and individualized supports for women who need intensive supports. When Lisa isn’t working, she enjoys the cottage life with her family.

Lisa Vizniowski


Lisa began her career at Forward House in 1993 as a Direct Support Professional and has worked with other community organizations including CPRI. She has been a Manager of various residential programs since 2000. Lisa has been one of the Crisis Prevention instructors at Forward House for many years and has knowledge and skills supporting individuals with Attachment disorder and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. She has a Bachelor’s degree in psychology (McGill), her Developmental Service diploma (Fanshawe College) and has further developed her management skills in two different certificate programs at Western. Lisa volunteers with a local children’s camp. She loves to go camping throughout Canada with her family during her vacations.

Sue Bates

Director of Operations

Sue joined the management team at Forward House in 2000 after working as a Direct Support Professional here for ten years. Sue’s previous work experiences include a Counsellor at a camp for children of all abilities and work at other developmental services organizations. Sue has managed a variety of residential homes and, more recently, has been essential in introducing various technological advances which have allowed the agency to improve our pay roll processes, record keeping and staff training. She completed her Developmental Services diploma at Fanshawe College. Sue is a talented artist and an avid gardener in her spare time.

Jelisa Clarke


Jelisa joined Forward House in early 2023 after working in Children’s Mental Health for over a decade. She has spent her time in various roles such as direct live in care, school settings, community programs and managing a few live in locations. Jelisa spent time developing and revamping the Children’s Mental Health Programs for children and adolescents at LHSC. In 2013 Jelisa received a prestigious award called The Krista Sepp Horizon Award which was presented to a CYC to recognize their ongoing contributions by their peers. In her personal life Jelisa is married and has 3 young children. She loves to read, dance, and has the most random trivia knowledge mainly on pop culture!

Mark Gowing

Executive Director

Mark joined Forward House in 2019 as the Executive Director. He has a varied social services employment background (Developmental Services, Addictions, Mental Health, Child Protection Indigenous Services, Youth Justice, Federal & Provincial Corrections, Homelessness). Mark holds a degree in Psychology & Sociology from Guelph University and professional certificates in Not-For-Profit Management and Mediation & Alternative Dispute Resolution from Western. Mark is passionate about strength-based leadership, encouraging Forward House to reflect the diversity of our community, building strong agency & community partnerships and balancing community needs with strategic planning. Mark’s personal interests include sports, cooking and crime drama.

Lisa King

Lisa King

Director of Business Administration

Lisa joined Forward House in 2022 after working for 24 years in a publicly-funded, community-based mental health organization in Michigan. Her role included payroll, human resources, procurement, grant administration and various other business matters. She enjoyed supporting the people and the programs to serve populations with dual diagnosis, substance abuse, migrant workers, teens, and families seeking counselling. Since moving to Ontario she has worked at a variety of organizations in a finance or business role. Lisa is also a mother who enjoys running, gardening and spending time with her dog.

Wendy McIntosh

Director of Finance

Wendy has been Forward House’s Finance Director since 2011. She has worked as a chartered accountant in the non-profit sector for over 30 years and she taught accounting through Fanshawe College’s Continuing Education program. Wendy teaches spin classes and occasionally does personal training with seniors or individuals with developmental disabilities. Over the years she has volunteered at the YMCA, created one of the first Learn to Run programs and run many marathons. Wendy is a proud parent and grandparent.

Our Board of Directors

Graham Briscoe

Graham is a physician currently practicing sport medicine and emergency medicine, and he holds an Assistant Professor appointment with the Department of Family Medicine at Western University. Dr. Briscoe earned his MBA at the Odette School of Business, MD at Western University, and he finished his residency training in Family Medicine in 2015.

Charmain Chadwick

Charmaine Chadwick is an ABA Consultant at Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board and a part-time instructor in the Autism and Behavioural Sciences Program at Fanshawe College. In both roles, she supports educators and young adults in incorporating evidence-based strategies to support learning and active participation in inclusive school environments. Charmaine has a long-standing history with Forward House as she started her career in this field as a staff member on our team many years ago.

Mike Cvetkovich

Mike has worked in Child Welfare for over 35 years with the last 17 years as a Supervisor at the Children’s Aid Society of London and Middlesex. He has significant experience with the Developmental Sector, Mental Health, Addictions, Education and practice from the Family of Origin theory and perspective. He is a strong advocate for individuals recognized with special needs. His educational background includes a Masters Degree in Social Work (Laurier), BSW, BA in Sociology (Western) and a Recreation Diploma.

Shawn McMahon

Shawn is a Controller who works in the private sector in both Canada and the United States. He completed his diplomas in Accounting and Business Finance at Fanshawe College. Shawn benefits the Forward House of London with his 27 years of experience in managerial accounting and finance.

Adia Okojie

Adia Okojie is a practiced licensed lawyer in his home country for 11 years, prior to moving to Canada. Adia currently works as a Court and Client Representative at the Ministry of Attorney General. Adia strongly believes in rendering his services for the betterment of humanity, and hopes one day to impact the world in a massive and positive way.

Kathleen Parker

Kathleen has worked in Children’s Mental Health for 25 plus years. She is passionate about advocating for those most vulnerable and assisting with progressive positive change. Kathleen brings a range of leadership roles and collaborative work experiences with not for profit organizations to her role. Kathleen hopes to be part of long-term systemic change in improving services in her community.

Many thanks to both our current and past volunteer board members for their hard work!