Janice Abbott has been the CEO of Atira Women’s Resource Society since 1992. She has lead the Society through its incredible growth from a single transition house located in South Surrey with a staff of seven to a large multi-service agency with two, for-profit subsidiaries, a development arm and more than 500 staff. She has headed up numerous innovative capital projects including Canada’s first multi-unit recycled shipping container housing development, which was completed in August 2013.
Throughout Atira’s herstory, Janice has championed barrier-free and low-barrier access to programs and services for women, ensuring Atira’s programs are accessible to all women affected by violence including women who have traditionally been marginalized by mainstream society. She developed and works to honour in her daily practice and in her life Atira’s anti-oppression framework.
Janice was recognized by BC Business Magazine as among one of BC’s 35 Most Influential Women in 2016 and BC’s Most Influential Women in Not-for-Profit, Culture & Media in 2015. Their panel said of Janice, “There’s a woman who’s been able to commercialize–in the most positive sense of the word– social enterprise in order to build more housing. Her drive is to create a very large, functioning not-for-profit entity focused on ending violence against women.” She is also the recipient of numerous other awards including the 2013 BC Non-Profit Housing Association’s Denise LaBlond Award, recognizing her dedication and vision in affordable housing in BC; and the Ernst & Young 2010 Social Entrepreneur of the Year award.