12 Young Canadians Begin Year-Long Cardus Leadership Program


Cardus NextGEN Fellows Program kicks off 2nd year with new group of up and coming Canadians


May 26, 2021

OTTAWA, ON – Twelve young, Canadian leaders have become the second group of Cardus NextGEN Fellows, participating in a year-long, leadership development program for those aged 25-34. The NextGEN fellows will explore the relevance and resources of the Christian faith for their careers, callings, and interests, as well as public life today. 

NextGEN Co-Director Stephen Lazarus admits choosing just 12 fellows from among dozens of high-quality applicants was almost an impossibly difficult task.

“We had so many high-calibre young Canadians interested in this program, I wish we had room for two or three dozen fellows,” said Lazarus. “I’m so thankful our advisory board helped us make such difficult choices. This year’s NextGEN fellows have such an amazing array of talents, interests, and backgrounds.”

The 12 NextGEN fellows for 2022 are:

Jonathan Cheng – Jonathan practises land use planning, development, and municipal law in Ontario and has been involved in securing approvals several project, including not-for-profit projects providing affordable and supported housing.

Tersha De Koning – Tersha is an Ontario lawyer with an interest in criminal, constitutional, and Charter law. She hopes to work eventually as both a lawyer and legal scholar.

Mark Chester Dumbrique – Mark is an insurance broker involved in the natural resources and transportation industries. He is also the bass section representative of the Calgary Philharmonic Chorus.

Hannah Gardiner – Hannah recently completed a master's degree in Literary Studies. She writes, works as a research assistant, and organizes a community café philosophy series in Kitchener, Ontario.

Nate Gartke – Nate is a lawyer for the Government of Alberta. He also serves on the boards of a local food bank and a Christian camp. 

Phil Gaudreau – Phil is a marketing and public relations consultant, author, and professor in Kingston, Ontario. He and his wife Catherine co-founded Make it Matter Media Inc. in 2013.

Linda Holdbrook – Linda is a public health researcher and currently works to improve the resettlement experience for newly arrived refugees in Canada. 

Jamil Jivani – Jamil is a lawyer and serves as president of the Canada Strong & Free Network. Jamil previously worked as a professor and policy advisor. 

Ilana Reimer – Ilana is the editor of Love Is Moving, a national magazine for Christian young adults. She also coordinates resource development for the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada. 

Hana Suckstorff – Hana is a soon-to-be History PhD at University of Toronto, where she worked on religious conversion in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Italy. She is particularly engaged with restorative justice work and is exploring work in policy development in Ontario. 

Peter Vlaar – Peter is an in-house lawyer for The Christian Labour Association of Canada, headquartered in Cambridge, Ontario.

Hallam Willis – Hallam is finishing reading for the Bachelor of Philosophy at the University of Oxford. His primary philosophical interests are in ethics and the philosophy of economics.

Pictures and bios of the 2022 Cardus NextGEN fellows are available online.

The Cardus NextGEN Fellows Program is a year-long, leadership development opportunity for Christians aged 25-34. Fellows join other young leaders from across Canada to explore the relevance and resources of the Christian faith for their vocations and for public life today.

Each class of fellows participates in a week-long seminar on Christian social and political thought in Ottawa, as well as four weekends across Canada, and monthly Zoom Connects with guest speakers to discuss vocation, leadership, faith and public life, and public policy.

“It was so rewarding to work with the first NextGEN group and to see how they grew over the course of a year, “ said NextGEN Co-Director Rachel Feddema. “I can’t wait to get started with this year’s fellows.”   

For more information on the Cardus NextGEN Fellows Program, please, visit nextgenfellowship.ca.


Daniel Proussalidis
Cardus – Director of Communications


Cardus is a non-partisan think tank dedicated to clarifying and strengthening, through research and dialogue, the ways in which society's institutions can work together for the common good.