Staff Members

Executive Director – Deborah Pugh

Deborah Pugh has been active in the autism community since 1995, both on a provincial and national level.  In 2003, with the support of parents and professionals from around BC, Deborah founded ACT – Autism Community Training. Prior to founding ACT, Deborah also served as Executive Director of the Autism Society of British Columbia.

From 1980 – 1994, Deborah was a journalist, working in Europe and the Middle East. She worked as a producer for the BBC African Service in London and as the UK’s Guardian Correspondent in Egypt from 1988 – 1994.

Deborah has a BA from McGill University, a MA from the University of London and a certificate in fundraising management from BCIT. Deborah has a young adult son with ASD. She is active in a number of provincial and national organizations. Currently she serves on:

  • Neuropsychiatry Planning Task Force – BC Children’s Hospital
  • National ASD Surveillance Committee – Public Health Agency of Canada
  • Online Mental Health and Autism Project (OMHAP)
  • Parent Coaching Research Project Steering Committee (Chair)

Awards:

BC Association of Speech-Language Pathologists – 2016 Distinguished Service Award

University of British Columbia’s Interprofessional Continuing Education Conference: Health & Wellbeing in Children, Youth and Adults with Developmental Disabilities – 2016 Outstanding Contribution Award

Event & Administrative Coordinator – Stephanie Porter

Stephanie Porter has a BA in Honours Sociology from the University of Waterloo. She brings to ACT six years of experience in administration, having previously worked in logistics, training coordination and human resources. Stephanie is passionate about contributing to the support of people with autism and their families, empowering them to build strong relationships with each other and in their communities.

Financial Controller – Linda Leung

Linda Leung is a CGA with a business degree from UBC. Her professional experiences were mainly in the manufacturing and transportation industries, including the not-for-profit sector. She enjoys the natural beauty of BC and its many hiking trails, but also loves to travel. To relax, she likes to curl up in a sofa with a good book and attend yoga classes.

Website Officer – Ryan Quiring

Ryan Quiring has a Certificate in Web Development from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology, a BA in Sociology from Simon Fraser University, and attended the New Media program at the University of Lethbridge. Ryan has previously worked in design and technical roles at DOXA Documentary Festival, Simon Fraser University’s downtown campus IT department, and CJSF Radio 90.1 FM.