National Capital FreeNet / Libertel de la Capitale nationale

Lauren Gardner

Candidate to be re-elected to the
National Capital FreeNet Board of Directors

What skills will you contribute to the NCF Board?

I started my career working with small Internet Service Providers, including several here in Ontario, so I understand some of the challenges that the NCF is up against.

In later years, I worked in a number of different areas within software & telecommunications firms, and I believe this broad experience will help the NCF Board.

My most recent role is a Program Manager for a large software company, where I’ve been exposed to everything from basic project management to financial & strategic planning, the latter I know is of significant value to any board.

I also believe that my background in Customer Experience & Strategy will help the NCF to provide additional value and support to it’s members.

What are the most important functions of the NCF for its members?

I strongly believe that affordable internet for all Canadians is a necessity, as well as technology skills training. I worked in a local Community Access Program (CAP) in rural Nova Scotia, and saw first-hand what an important service this was; it made the internet available to everyone, regardless of skill or income level.

In the years since, technology has become an integral part of our day-to-day lives, underscoring the need for accessible service and skills programs. When I first came to Ottawa in 2000, I was starting fresh, with little to no savings to speak of and no family in the area. I couldn’t afford long-distance phone calls home, but with a computer and my NCF connection (free dial-up at the time), I was able to stay connected with my loved ones. While technology has changed over that time, the need for affordable internet and connectivity is a constant.

Why do you want to be an NCF director?

I am passionate about supporting local non-profits and not-for-profits, as I know personally the value they bring to our community; not only through my own experience, but through various charitable initiatives with my employer. I want to continue supporting the NCF as a Director so that I can directly contribute to supporting this amazing, vital organization within the National Capital Area, and help to further expand its reach and impact.

Lauren Gardner (fy923)