Meet Our Team
Pauline came to Lanark County from the Orleans area back in July of 1994. After getting over the culture shock, she embraced it by volunteering to get to know the community and meet new people. She first volunteered with the United Church Women’s Group and the Women’s Institute. Pauline then found herself as secretary on the Children’s Resources On Wheels Board of Directors.
From there she joined the Adult learning & Training Centre in 2005, undertaking clerical duties part time, and jumping at the chance to work full time. Three years later Pauline was promoted to Executive Director. It was by happenstance that she stumbled across the literacy field, and having no prior concept of reading being a problem with adults in this day and age, or that there were services within the community that were addressing it. Pauline has found a new appreciation for Lanark County, its people and great sense of community and belonging. She learns just as much from the people the Centre helps as they do from the help the Centre gives them. During her four-year residency in Brockville, she volunteered her time at the local library sharing her knowledge and skills helping others improve their skills and boosting their self-confidence and self-esteem.
Pauline moved to the town of Smiths Falls a year ago, and is loving it! She has made new friends and loves the community interaction and friendliness she has come across. Her love of Elvis and cats is known to all, her passion is in metaphysics, always looks forward to riding her motorcycle with her son and father. She has picked up a new interest in earning her Canadian Fund Raising Executive Certificate to continue her love of helping others carry on the wonderful services they provide to the wonderful community she lives in.
Tracey Beckstead hails from Dundas County. Originally joining the team as Office Manager her big smile and easy going character created an immediate connection with everyone. It wasn’t long before her nurturing characteristics placed her front and center as the digital technology practitioner. Her exceptional organizational skills and practical thinking has benefited all learners lucky enough to require her assistance, making the Executive Directors’ decision to place Tracey in her current role as Program Director an effortless one.
Although Smiths Falls is not Tracey’s hometown, she wasted no time getting involved. She joined the ladies’ baseball league and the fall bowling league. She also acquainted herself with community leaders and started volunteering. She is a proud member of the Smiths Falls Ladies Auxiliary Royal Canadian Legion Branch 95. Tracey is a full time caregiver for her father, and is an active member of the Successful Aging Advisory Committee in Lanark County, committed to enriching the lives of our senior loved ones. With the aging population increase across the country, Tracey strongly believes that it is imperative that we are proactive and continually improving community services.
Office Administrator/Program Assistant
Andrea is a native from the Smiths Falls area, a graduate of SFDCI and is currently the Office Administrator/Program Assistant at the Adult Learning & Training Centre. Andrea brings with her 20 years of customer service and administrative experience. Andrea has worn many different employment hats over the years; however the road always comes back to administration. Andrea enjoys working with people one on one and making their experience worthwhile while adding a dash of fun. Andrea enjoys social media on a personal level while using it as a tool to keep everyone up to date on what the Adult Learning & Training Centre is up to. Finding new ways to assist adult learners gain independence or advance their employment opportunities makes Andrea feel she is creating a difference in someone’s life.
Andrea is the office deejay and self-appointed movie expert – try quizzing her next time you drop in! Andrea is the first face you will see when visiting the Adult Learning & Training Centre, and she looks forward to answering any of your questions.
Ellen moved to the Smiths Falls area with her husband, 25 years ago in the spring of 1998. Hearing the great academic reviews, of the rural Lombardy Public School they decided to settle in the Lombardy area to raise their family.
Wanting to be able to stay at home to raise their family, Ellen left her employment in the “big city”. Opting for the more chaotic life of raising two children, as opposed to the “9-5” work schedule that she was used to.
When her oldest child set off to school, Ellen found that she had more time on her hands during the day and a toddler that needed some friends, so she decided to help other families raise their children by opening a home daycare.
Throughout the years the Laforest family welcomed many children into their family home and came to love each smiling face as if they were their own. Many families in the Smiths Falls and Lombardy area have become an adopted extension of their family.
Ellen lives by the quote “everything happens for a reason”, so when her youngest child decided to venture out on his own, she decided it was time to say goodbye to her child caregiving years and re-enter the outside workforce.
Knowing that she needed to upgrade her digital technology skills, she reached out to Ontrac a local employment service organization for assistance which brought her to the Adult Learning & Training Centre.
During the months following the start of Ellen’s training with ALTC, her instructor came to realize that Ellen’s work ethic, wacky sense of humour, and common sense approach to learning and people would make her a great fit for the team.
So going back to the quote “Everything happens for a reason”. It truly does! Ellen would never have met our great team if she hadn’t decided to change her career path. ALTC welcomed Ellen into their family in the fall of 2022 as Tracey and Andreas’s Assistant/Program Assistant. Ellen brings with her many years of caring and nurturing as well as a different approach to how people understand and learn new things. Always willing to learn and improve her knowledge of things, Ellen is always here to offer her assistance to staff and learners.