2011 Alumni of Distinction


James (Jim) Cook Business Administration - Data Processing, 1983     Jim Cook was hired by TD Bank Group in 1983 after graduating from Durham College’s Business Administration diploma program – Data Processing option. While with TD Group, Cook was offered a great opportunity at the Bank of Bermuda as senior telecommunications analyst, which he accepted. After three years designing and implementing an international network to connect the Bermuda office to other offices around the world, Cook returned to TD Bank Group in Toronto, Ont. Cook has held various roles within TD Bank Group in progressively senior positions. In his current role as IT manager – Contact Centre Vendor Management, Cook is responsible for managing an outsourcing agreement with Bell Canada which provides all the telephony services for the TD Bank Group contact centres in Canada as well as India. Cook went on to obtain a Business Management diploma from Ryerson University in Toronto, Ont. in 1995. In his spare time, Cook has volunteered as a senior referee to train, coach and mentor junior referees at the Hillsburgh and Erin District Soccer Club as well as coaching soccer teams to build players’ skills and sportsmanship at the Georgetown Soccer club. He also volunteers as a door to door canvasser with the Heart and Stroke and Kidney foundations. Cook enjoys golf, cross-country skiing and traveling.

Jennifer Iacob (nee Lee) Nursing, 2004      Founder and director of Arms of Love, an organization working with urban Roma children and their families in Bucharest, Romania, Jennifer Iacob humbly states that her greatest accomplishments are helping others reach their full potential. Since graduating from the Nursing program in 2004, Iacob obtained her Registered Nurse status and has been working with children ever since. Iacob created and supervised the Arms of Love program in Romanian state hospitals and orphanages in 2005. The program provides early intervention and education for infants, toddlers and handicapped children at risk for delayed development due to neglect or poor care. She has since recruited, trained and supervised Romanian workers and international volunteers to work with the program. Over the years, she has worked with hundreds of Romanian children, bringing love and hope into their lives. She has established an outreach centre for impoverished families in Romania where mothers and caregivers have access to workshops on first aid, hygiene, and childhood illnesses. The centre also provides day programs for children living in poverty. Children learn math; proper hygiene and social skills; and they participate in programs on literacy and physical education. Iacob offers internships to those who want to gain international experience working with disadvantaged children. An avid reader and baker, Iacob loves to travel and plans to visit India, Brazil and Kenya in the near future.

Kellie Garrett (nee Stephens) Public Relations, 1986     Described as a trailblazer, restless spirit and voracious reader, Kellie Garrett is Farm Credit Canada’s (FCC) senior vice-president, Strategy, Knowledge and Reputation. In this role with one of Canada’s top 50 companies, she is responsible for FCC’s business strategy, innovation, market intelligence, knowledge management and communication. She is an Accredited Business Communicator (ABC) with a Master of Arts in Leadership from Royal Roads University in Victoria, B.C. and is a graduate of Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management program. Garrett is passionate about voluntarism and is past-chair of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) Research Foundation, a board director with Canadian Business for Social Responsibility and past-chair of the Hospitals of Regina Foundation. A regular speaker on topics ranging from leadership and strategy to personal brand, Garrett is also a counsellor to parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. In 2007, Garrett was named one of Canada’s top 100 Most Powerful Women by the Women’s Executive Network and in 2009, one of Saskatchewan’s 10 Most Influential Women. Married with two children, when she’s not working, Garrett likes canoeing and travel. For the three brief and glorious months when it’s warm enough to grow plants in the Canadian prairies, Garrett spends as much time as she can gardening.

Dan Quinn Sports Administration, 1984     Since graduating from Durham College’s Sport Administration program in 1984, Dan Quinn has travelled the province of Ontario establishing multiple sports clubs for physically disabled children and adults, established the Canadian Sport Awards program to recognize the accomplishments of Canada’s leading amateur athletes, raised funds to support amateur sports in Canada and restructured the broadcast landscape bringing more National Football League (NFL) football to Canadian fans. Quinn has been the managing director of the NFL – Canada since June of 2000. In this role, he is responsible for the overall management of the business affairs of the NFL in Canada, including the negotiation of all broadcast, sponsorship and licensing agreements, as well as establishing and managing the strategic direction of one of the strongest sports brands. His previous roles include vice-president, Marketing and Sales for the Toronto Argonauts football club, where he devised and implemented a marketing and sales strategic plan focusing on brand building; and director, Corporate Partnerships at Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment where he was responsible for the effective development and delivery of sponsorship programs for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Quinn has created an annual fundraising initiative in conjunction with the Wizard Foundation, that will surpass half a million dollars raised for Special Olympics Canada. He serves as chair of the Durham College Sports Management Advisory Committee and has spoken to the students of the program every year since 1990.