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Connections Community Services

Board of Directors


Gary Ma


Gary is the founder of Gary Ma Accounting and Consulting Ltd., a CPA firm that serves clients across a variety of industry sectors including retail, real estate, technology, hospitality, financial services, consumer goods and entertainment.  He is a designated Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) and holds a Bachelor of Management degree (Honors) from University of British Columbia. As an auditor and a business consultant, he brings with him experience in both corporate and not-for-profit environments. Previously, he worked with PricewaterhouseCoopers and a medium-size professional services firm, where he specialized in providing audit, accounting and advisory services.

Gary is committed to giving back to the community and making a difference in the lives of youth.  He has volunteered with Connections Community Service Society (previously RYSA) since 2010. In his spare time, he enjoys traveling and experiencing different cultures.

Jerry Huang

Finance chair

Mr. Huang is an experienced finance and capital markets professional in the natural resources, banking & tech space. He has extensive experience in corporate development and investor relations roles with mining and resource companies globally. He has over 10 years of public companies experience, executing on strategic and financing initiatives for junior companies on joint ventures, financings, and deals over $90M to date. Previously he worked with CIBC in Financial Advisory roles managing high networth portfolios. He graduated with Masters of Business Administration from the University of British Columbia jointly with Jiaotong University in Shanghai. He has also completed the Chartered Professional Accountant PEP program. He has been on the board of Connections since 2011, having other volunteering experience with Pearson hospital, Marpole Community Center, and helping raise $50K for scholarships for Kwantlen University College.

Brian Xie


Brian is currently a member of TikTok’s Strategy and Business Operations team, responsible for high-level business planning and internal strategy for the company. Prior to that, he was an investment banker based out of Los Angeles, advising on mergers & acquisitions, capital raises and strategic investments for clients on deals totalling over $15B.

Brian obtained his Bachelors from the Richard Ivey School of Business with an Honours in Business Administration, and joined the Board in 2022.

Michelle Zhou


Michelle is presently serving as an Employment Assistance Worker at the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction in British Columbia. Prior to her tenure in the provincial public service, Michelle dedicated three years to Connections Community Services Society (CCSS), from 2019 to 2022, where she excelled as an employment counsellor. In this role, she focused on providing vital support to youth with government care experiences, navigating multiple barriers on their path to employment and self-sufficiency.

Before venturing into the realm of employment counseling, Michelle cultivated 13 years of experience as a lecturer at the School of Business, Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, China. In addition to her teaching position, Michelle also served as Foreign Affairs Assistant at the same school for three years and contributed to international cooperation and oversea programs development. Her wealth of knowledge and diverse background adds a unique perspective to her approach in supporting individuals in their career journeys.

Michelle holds a Master of Education from Simon Fraser University, Canada, and a Master of Commerce from the University of Sydney, Australia.

Eager to make a meaningful impact, Michelle has rejoined the CCSS family as a board member, keen on contributing to the organization’s growth and continued success. She cherishes this opportunity to give back to a community that she holds close to her heart.

Outside of her professional commitments, Michelle values quality time with her cherished family members. Committed to community service, she actively seeks opportunities to volunteer and make a positive difference in the lives of others. Michelle’s multifaceted background, paired with her passion for community engagement, makes her a valuable asset in both her professional and personal endeavors.

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