Tess Porter is an educator, a mentor, a life coach, a community volunteer, a philanthropist… and a wedding officiant. So naturally we need to start there. We want to know about Tess’s most memorable wedding ceremony.
“There are a lot of them,” laughs Tess. “It’s always positive and uplifting and I’m honoured to be part of someone’s special day. I want to help make it exceptional for them.”
Tess’s desire to make a difference for these happy couples sums up her approach to life. She is known for going the extra mile. After a successful career in law enforcement and 15 years of teaching at Algonquin College, Tess continues to give back to her community. She volunteers for many non-profit organizations and has served on several community boards. She is also a mentor for Black students graduating from high school.
“I’m their personal cheerleader. I help to look for systemic barriers that we can uproot, dismantle, and identify for change,” she says. “These children are our future, and we want them to feel supported, unconditionally.”
Tess’s commitment to local healthcare is yet another example of her community spirit. She served on Queensway Carleton Hospital’s (QCH) Board of Directors for four years and says she was excited to get involved: “QCH was my local hospital and I’ve seen first-hand the care, kindness, and genuine concern for patients. I truly believe in the hospitals’ values.”
In 2019, Tess became a member of the QCH Foundation’s Women In Philanthropy program.
“When I heard about this program, I said ‘Yes, sign me up!’,” says Tess. “It’s a great way to stay connected with QCH and to support local healthcare. We give because we believe in the work that the QCH team is doing.”
When asked about her personal mantra, Tess doesn’t hesitate:
“If I can help one person, my life is worthwhile. The opportunity to be instrumental and effect change makes all the difference. It’s a ripple effect and it’s amazing when you see it.”
Clearly Tess has touched countless lives, including many patients at QCH through her volunteer work and philanthropic support. For that, we are all grateful.
Queensway Carleton Hospital Foundation’s Women In Philanthropy program brings together like-minded women who want to help transform healthcare for Ottawa and our region. Collectively, Women In Philanthropy members invest in advanced programs and services at Queensway Carleton Hospital that respond to our community’s most pressing healthcare challenges.