Board of Directors
Catholic Conscience is blessed with an outstanding board of directors. Each of our directors brings unique talents, passions, and perspectives, and shares them generously in defining and implementing our strategic vision.
Vickie has worked with the Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto in a variety of roles for over 19 years. With Fontbonne Ministries, Sisters of St. Joseph, Toronto she was the Director of Development and Communications. In her current role as Administrator, CSJ Ministries, Vickie supports the Sisters of St. Joseph in their ministries of Social Justice, Peace & Creation Care and Communications.
She is a graduate of St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto, where she studied Urban Economic & Cultural Historical Geography. With little time between classes she found a place for quiet study, spiritual reflection and coffee with friends at the Newman Centre. In 2011, she joined the Newman Foundation Board to support the Chaplaincy initiatives offered there. She is the chair of the Social Justice Committee at St. Peter’s Parish and an SMC Alumni representative on the College of Electors – UofT. Vickie and her husband Scott (also an SMC graduate) have 3 grown children.
Father Michael McGourty
Father Michael McGourty was born in Toronto at St Joseph’s Hospital. His parents moved the family to Markham, where he grew up, when he was eight years old. He attended St Joseph’s elementary school in Markham and St Robert’s High School in Thornhill. After graduating from high school he attended McMaster University in Hamilton, where he received an honours bachelor degree in political science. While attending McMaster University he rediscovered his faith and spent a summer at the Cistercian Monastery that was in Orangeville, Ontario. After this experience, he decided to apply to St. Augustine’s Seminary and discern a vocation to the priesthood. Fr. Michael was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Toronto in 1992 and first served as an associate pastor at St Anselm’s Parish in Leaside. He went to Rome to study the liturgy in 1996 and received a license and doctorate in liturgy from the Pontifical Institute for Sacred Liturgy. Since then, he has taught liturgy and sacraments at St Augustine’s Seminary in Toronto and St Peter’s Seminary in London, Ontario. While at St Augustine’s Seminary he served as dean of students and studies. He has served as pastor at St John’s Parish in Weston and is presently the pastor of St Peter’s Parish in Toronto.
Luke Stocking was born in Toronto but grew up on a 50 acre farm in a town called Uxbridge.
Today, he works for Development and Peace – Caritas Canada, the international solidarity movement of the Catholic Church in Canada. Luke was first involved with the movement as a high school student at the age of 16, when D&P had a special campaign to end sweatshop labour. He joined the staff of D&P in November 2006 as the Central Ontario Animator and served in that role for 12 years, working to inspire, educate and organize Canadian Catholics and all people of good will to bring the Gospel Call to international solidarity to life. He has led trips for volunteer members to visit D&P partners in Zambia, the Philippines, Paraguay and Ethiopia.
Today he is the Deputy Director of Public Engagement and the face of D&P’s leadership team for the Ontario and Atlantic regions.
Luke has a Master of Arts in Theology from St. Michael’s at the University of Toronto with a focus on Catholic Social Teaching.
He is happily married with two children and lives in the Junction neighbourhood of Toronto. He sees himself as blessed to be able to support his family while living his vocation, which is living and giving witness to the social justice message of the Catholic Faith.
Lisa Melanson’s family came to Canada in 1604, and with a short disruption has been here ever since. Having studied at Dalhousie and Cambridge Universities, she has been a US and Canadian intellectual property lawyer for more than 20 years and is currently a partner at one of Canada’s largest and most prestigious law firms. Since 2017 she has been ranked among the top 250 women intellectual property lawyers in the world.
Lisa serves in direct and supporting roles for several boards, including the parish council at St Patrick’s Church in Toronto and Toronto Standard Condominium Corporation 1598.
Matthew Marquardt is counsel to a Toronto business law firm, and founder of Catholic Conscience. He holds degrees in history and engineering from the University of Texas, and in law from the University of Washington. Matthew has previously served as a police officer and an aerospace engineer for the world’s foremost aircraft manufacturer. is a member of St Patrick’s Parish, serves on secular and religious boards, and is a lay associate of the Redemptorists.
During a professional political career that included speechwriting for Canada’s Finance Minister, as well as other Government ministers and officials and exposure to inner party politics, Brendan found himself growing concerned for the tone and nature of political discourse in Canada. A conversation with Matthew, which showed that Matthew shared those concerns, proved Providential: with his political experience and sharp intellect, Brendan immediately began to spout ideas that have transformed Catholic Conscience and its mission in ways that have already impacted Canadian politics, and set an exciting course for the future as our Executive Director. A graduate of McGill University and now chief writer with a large Canadian charity, Brendan was a 2019 fellow of CivicAction’s DiverseCity Fellowship Program and is actively involved with several Catholic organizations and ministries in Toronto. Brendan is a parishioner at St. Basil’s Catholic Church.