Your Board of Directors

Meet Your Synergy Credit Union Representatives!

Macklin Credit Union Board Appointment

Appointment expires 2022, wherein incumbent is eligible to seek a District #3 Board Position

Linda Gramlich Expand/Collapse

July 2020 when Macklin Credit Union amalgamated with Synergy, Linda was appointed by their membership to the Board of Directors. Linda has extensive financial industry experience both as an employee and board member. Linda was a lender for Scotiabank as well as worked for Border Credit Union (now Servus Credit Union) as a teller and in their accounting department. Linda embraces the credit union culture and strives to protect and nurture its cooperative values at the boardroom level.  
 
While raising her family, Linda managed the accounting of their small oilfield business in Macklin. Continually since 1992, she has served on Macklin Credit Union’s Board, as Board Vice-President as well as Chairman of the Audit and Risk Committee for several years.  Like other members of Synergy’s board, she, too, is a lifelong learner.  Linda is a graduate of the Credit Union Director’s Achievement Program and is working towards becoming an Accredited Canadian Credit Union Director.
 
Linda is a strong community supporter, having been one of the founding members and serving on the World Bunnock Championship Committee for 10 years. Additionally, Linda is Past President of the Macklin Kinette Club, and past Secretary Treasurer of Macklin Minor Sports and the Arena Board.  
 
In 2005, Linda took on a new role, and moved onto a farm north of Macklin, where she and her spouse, own and operate a large cattle ranch.

District 1

Brent Baier Expand/Collapse

Brent is the founder and CEO of Iron Will Innovations and inventor of the Peregrine Glove, a wearable technology interface. In 2005 he graduated with Distinction from Lakeland College, with a Computer Systems Technology diploma, and received the prestigious Vic Juba Leadership Award. He has extensive experience in business and entrepreneurship in the areas of prototyping, patenting, engineering, manufacturing, marketing, fundraising, and management with business travel taking him to the US, China, Europe and the Middle East.

Brent is a lifelong credit union member and in 2012 joined the board of Synergy. He strongly believes in the member-owned cooperative philosophy and the positive impact credit unions have on their communities.   

Brent grew up on a farm near Macklin, Sask. In 2015, he achieved his goal of winning the World Bunnock Championship, a tournament he has competed in since his youth. He is happily married to his wife, Cherene, and has two children.

Tom Schinold Expand/Collapse

Tom was elected to the Board in 2015 and has served on the Audit and Building Committees and currently serves as the Risk Committee, Chairperson. Tom holds a Bachelor of Administration degree (majoring in accounting and finance) as well as a Diploma of Public Administration both from the University of Regina.  

Tom retired from the Catholic School Division, Chief Financial Officer position in 2015, wherein he oversaw finance, facilities, transportation and project managed school capital building projects. Additionally, Tom has served on numerous community committees and organizations in leadership roles, such as chairman of the St. Anthony’s Church finance committee and a founding member of Border City Optimist Club. 

Tom has been a Lloydminster resident since 1991 and a Synergy Credit Union member for over 26 years. Tom strongly believes in the benefits the credit union provides the communities they serve. 

Tom is married to Michelle and has a daughter and a son. 

Melanie Mari Expand/Collapse

Melanie was elected to the Board of Directors in 2016 and is a former employee of Synergy Credit Union. Melanie continues her career in finance as a controller with Tryton Tool Services. She has a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Calgary, and earned a Credit Union Fellowship designation while employed at Synergy.  In 2019, Melanie obtained an Accredited Canadian Credit Union Director designation and is committed to broadening her finance and leadership education.

Melanie is passionate about financial literacy, and is proud to be a part of an organization that promotes financial well-being for its members.

Melanie believes her education and credit union involvement serve her well in the role of director and is committed to taking an active part in the future of the credit union and the community.

Richard Graff Expand/Collapse

Richard is a lifelong member of the Lloydminster/Synergy Credit Union and has served as a director since 1996. During the past 24 years he has been involved in various committees and has chaired the Audit, Risk and Building committees. He also spent 3 years as a delegate to the Saskatchewan Credit Union Central.

Richard proudly serves the Lloydminster and Hillmond communities, volunteering for numerous and varied functions and fundraiser events. He is a RM of Britannia first responder, as well as has spent many years helping plan and build the new Hillmond arena and serving as a minor hockey volunteer.

Richard has a financial background and over 30 years of sales and management experience. Currently he is a REALTOR® licensed to trade in Commercial, Residential and Rural real estate along with Property Management in the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan and is registered with the Real Estate Centre brokerage in Lloydminster.

Carolyn Young Expand/Collapse

In 2001, Carolyn, her husband and five children moved from Raymore, Saskatchewan. She holds a CMA/CPA designation and is employed with Husky Energy, Accounting Department. Previously, she worked 10 years at Servus Credit Union, in various positions including Accounting Department Management. One of her passions is coaching which she demonstrates as part of a CPA Student mentor program.

Carolyn is community oriented and believes in promoting the great things Lloydminster has to offer, giving back to the community through her involvement with Husky's Charitable Campaign Program, serving as a board member on the Lloydminster Tennis Association and hosting International Rotary students. Further Carolyn and her husband Richard, donate both their time and a portion of the proceeds to many worthwhile community organizations via their personal small businesses.

Carolyn is a longtime member and believes her personal and professional experiences are assets to the Board of Directors.

District 2

C. Neil Carruthers Expand/Collapse

Elected to the Board in 2012, Neil then obtained his Accredited Canadian Credit Union Director Status in 2015. Currently Neil is the Corporate Governance Committee Chairperson and Board Vice- President.

Neil is a strong supporter of Synergy’s Profit Sharing Program where our members benefit from a well-run business. Neil also believes that members should have choices of how they bank, be it on line or in branch or a combination of both.

Neil holds a Degree in Agriculture from the University of Saskatchewan and has spent the last 30 years in the Animal Health Industry. Currently Neil is the Regional Business Manager for Merck. Neil was a founding Director on Zoetis Canada Pension Board as well as a past Leader for the Paradise Hill 4 H club.

When the work week is done, Neil enjoys getting back to his roots and running their farm with wife Gail and two daughters in the Frenchman Butte and Biggar areas.

District 3

Dean Walde: Board Vice-Chairperson Expand/Collapse

Dean joined the Board in 1990 and has served on all committees, in addition to 7 years as President, currently serving as Audit Committee, Chairperson. Dean also served as the President of the Board of Directors of SaskCentral. Being a SaskCentral Board Member afforded him the opportunity to serve as a Board Member of CUDGC (Credit Union Deposit Guarantee Corp) and Concentra Financial.

Dean's experience is not limited to the financial industry, having served on SCA and the Saskatchewan Agricultural Council as well as a former delegate for Federated Co-op and Canadian Co-operative Association.

Dean believes in lifelong learning and is a Graduate of the Credit Union Director’s Achievement Program, continuing his education in governance, risk management and financial literacy.

In 2013, Dean received the SaskCentral Order of Merit Award and in October 2017 was honored to receive the very prestigious Lifetime Co-operative Achievement Award from the Saskatchewan Co-operative Association.

Faith Graham Expand/Collapse

Faith joined the Synergy Credit Union Board of Directors in 2020 and currently serves on the Human Resources Committee. Faith brings with her extensive business and board experience. She has 40 years of business experience as the prior co-owner and Secretary-Treasurer of Grubby’s Trucking Ltd. as well as 20 years of board experience as a Trustee for the Northwest School Division.

Faith is looking forward to gaining an understanding and exposure to the credit union’s governing bodies and the impact they have on our communities as well as working with them for the benefit of all stakeholders.

Faith and her spouse are long time residents of the Neilburg area, having raised their family in the community. They believe community service is a lifelong endeavour and look forward to discovering innovative ways to serve in our ever-changing environment.

Don Wheler: Board Chairperson Expand/Collapse

Don joined the Synergy Credit Union Board in 1998 and was elected Board Chair in 2016. He previously worked as the coordinator for the Northwest School Division Leadership Academy following a 34 year teaching career, is a recipient of provincial and national leadership awards and has served as president on both the Saskatchewan and Canadian Student Leadership boards.

Don is committed to life-long-learning, having achieved a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Saskatchewan and continues to upgrade his skills and knowledge as evidenced by achieving the ‘Accredited Canadian Credit Union Director’ designation as well as completing the University of Toronto Rotman School of Management ‘CUES Governance Leadership Institute’ program.

Don believes in building strong communities within the Synergy umbrella in an ethically and fiscally responsible manner. He encourages collaboration, cooperation, and dedication as foundations for Synergy to serve its members where they live. He brings his leadership skills and experience to the Synergy team and enjoys the challenges of the ever-changing credit union landscape.

District 4

Lorne Janzen Expand/Collapse

Lorne served on the Kindersley & District Credit Union Board of Directors from 1995 to 2007. From 2007 to 2016 Lorne served as a Kindersley Branch Advisory Council member before joining Synergy Credit Union’s Board April 2016. He currently serves on the Human Resources Committee. Lorne believes in lifelong learning and is continuing his education by working towards completing the Credit Union Director Achievement program.

Lorne retired after a 36-year career at Saskatchewan Government Insurance claims division, wherein he attained a Chartered Insurance Professional designation in 2011.

Lorne has extensive experience in both community and public service, having served 10 years as a Kindersley town councilor and currently works with the St Paul’s United Church, as well Lorne is a proud, lifetime Kinsmen Club member. He also served on a humanitarian mission to Kenya in 2013. Lorne is the Vice-Chairperson of South Saskatchewan River Watershed Stewards Inc., a community based, non-profit organization whose mandate is to ensure safe, sustainable water supplies for the economic, social and environment wellbeing of the watershed and its users

Dean Roberts Expand/Collapse

Dean grew up on a farm near Coleville, Saskatchewan.  After graduating high school, he attended the University of Saskatchewan where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering.  He then returned to Coleville to take over the family farm. His focus has been on building a sustainable and environmentally responsible business plan that ensures both the long- and short-term viability of the farm. Dean enjoys attending different conferences over the year to discuss and debate the issues and opportunities facing the farm industry.   

Dean was elected as a councillor for the RM of Oakdale in 2019 and has been enjoying the new experiences that municipal government provides. He is currently working on completing the Municipal Leadership Development Program (MLDP) to better serve his community.

Dean has been a lifelong member of the Credit Union system, starting with the original “Fat Cat” account. Dean joined the Synergy Board of Directors in 2014.