CanCham Thailand

Board Members of 2017 / 2018

Board photo_CUT

Back Row: Dean Outerson (Vice President), Peter Baines, Lawrence Cordes, Ron Livingston, David Beckstead, Dan McKay (Treasurer), Michael White

Seated: Nitipong Boonsong, Surachit Chanovan, John Casella, Derek van Pelt, Yvonne Chin (Advisor), John Stevens (President), Caroline Kwan, Marisha Shibuya (Advisor)

Not Pictured: Sunny Patel (Secretary), Don Lavoie (Advisor), Joni Simpson (Advisor), Sean Brady (Advisor)

Executive Board:

  1. John Stevens, President
  2. Dean Outerson, Vice President
  3. Derek van Pelt, Vice President
  4. Dan McKay, Treasurer
  5. Sunny Patel, Secretary


Board Members:

  1. Peter Baines
  2. David Beckstead
  3. Nitipong Boonsong
  4. John Casella
  5. Surachit Chanovan
  6. Lawrence Cordes
  7. Caroline Kwan
  8. Ron Livingston
  9. Michael White



  1. Sean Brady
  2. Yvonne Chin
  3. Don Lavoie
  4. Marisha Shibuya
  5. Joni Simpson


Board Members

In Alphabetical Order

Peter Baines

Chief Executive Officer, GEM Hotel Group, Thailand

1. Peter Baines
Peter has over 40 years of experience in the hospitality industry. Twenty-two of those were with the Fairmont Raffles Group and lastly, three years as Group CFO for Red Planet Hotels, the leading owner/operator of limited service hotels in Southeast Asia. He has resided in Southeast Asia for the last six years, gaining extensive business experience and forming a network of relationships, with a focus on Thailand, Philippines and Indonesia. He is now raising funds to start up a fresh new hotel brand in the “affordable luxury” space.

David Beckstead

Consultant, Tilleke & Gibbins (Thailand) Co., Ltd.

15. David Beckstead

David Beckstead is a consultant in Tilleke & Gibbins’ corporate and commercial group. With an emphasis on asset-based finance and project finance, David’s practice is focused on representing both lenders and borrowers in cross-border lending in the oil and gas, mining, telecommunications, and manufacturing sectors. David has also advised on numerous complex commercial transactions such as cross-border M&As, loan portfolio acquisitions, and joint ventures. Through his professional experience in multiple Asian jurisdictions, David is adept at utilizing both traditional and unconventional legal tools to protect his clients’ interests.

David obtained a law degree at Kobe University in Japan. He completed a joint common law and civil law degree at McGill University in Canada, where he also received his master’s degree. Having studied law and lived in Japan for more than five years, David is able to write and speak fluently in Japanese. He is also fluent in French. David is a licensed attorney in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Nitipong Boonsong

Partner, Siam City Law Ltd.

14. Nitipong Boonsong

Nitipong Boonsong he is an extremely experienced Thai Lawyer with over 20 years of experience in Thailand, specifically, as well as more than 5 years in South East Asia regional in general. Nitipong has an attorney’s license and he has obtained an AEC training certificate from King Prajadhipok’s Institute. He is also a graduate from political school King Prajadphipok’s Institute Certificate and he obtained a Diploma Public Administration and Law for Executive.

Nitipong is currently a Partner at Siam City Law (Myanmar) Company Limited (SCL Law Group). Nitipong is also a member of the Internal Security Operations Command in the capacity of a Counsel for 3 terms of operations. Nitipong is also an active member of the Committee of Thai Business Association in Myanmar and was an CanCham committee member for 2015-2016.

He works very closely with the Thai, Myanmar, Lao and Cambodia Governments relating to various concession and government relation.

John Casella

Managing Partner, PKF Tax and Consulting Services (Thailand) Ltd.

2. John Casella
Mr. John Casella has more than 20 years of professional experience in accounting, consulting and management positions for a wide range of companies and projects in S.E. Asia and North America. John is the Managing Partner at PKF Tax and Consulting Services (Thailand) Limited where he has successfully built a strong team over the past 5 years providing a broad range of expertise, including: taxation compliance and tax consulting services, outsourced accounting and payroll, corporate legal support, and risk management services. During the last year, John has also opened PKF Audit (Thailand) Ltd. offering audit and assurance services to foreign and local clients alike. Previously, John spent 10 years providing corporate advisory services for Churchill Pryce Capital throughout SE Asia, including corporate debt restructuring, operational consulting, M&A due diligence, business valuation, etc.
Before that, John worked as Operations Analyst in the corporate head-office of the Dusit Group in Bangkok. John started his career with 4 years as a financial audit for Arthur Andersen at their Canadian head-office in Toronto. John earned an Honours Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Windsor and a Bachelor degree in Psychology from the University of Western Ontario. He holds an active license as a Certified Public Accountant in the USA and is an active Certified Management Accountant in Canada.
John is a member of the Rotary Club of Bangkok South. He is also an active member of the Bangkok Flying Farangs and Thai Stix hockey teams. John is a former CanCham Thailand President and CanCham Thailand Treasurer.

Surachit (Art) Chanovan

Managing Director,

3. Surachit Chanowan
As an active member of the Chamber’s Education Sector, Mr. Surachit (Art) Chanovan has been a strong advocate of quality education for Thai students and served as the Country Director of CANCHAM THAILAND member company, Canadian Education Centre Network (CECN) – Thailand Branch from April 25, 2002 until the network’s global closure in January 2010. He served as a CANCHAM THAILAND Board Director from May 2002 to March 2003 and continued as a Board Advisor until 2012 before rejoining as board director in 2013 until present. Mr. Chanovan received the CANCHAM THAILAND’s Business Excellence Award in the “Best Canada-Thai Linkages” Category in 2003 for his efforts in promoting Canadian as education destination. Most recently, Mr. Chanovan became the Managing Director of “” from February 1, 2010 to the present. Like CECN, his new entity is the continuation of his excellent job in promoting Canadian education to Thai students working in alliance with his former colleagues from various countries in Asia.
In promoting the Canadian education sector, Mr Chanovan has led and/or supported annual Canadian education fairs, annual secondary school /post-secondary forums, information sessions for schools throughout Bangkok & upcountry, college/university events and student/agent seminars. He has also provided education/travel counseling to various Thai students, parents and local school counselors and provided linkages to various Canadian institutions’ websites for the benefit of Thai public.
Mr. Chanovan, a US graduate has acquired extensive business competencies in the fields of communications, education, international relations, travel, and transportation. His career path has included work assignments as Regional Manager, Asia Pacific of Amadeus, and as Country Manager Thailand of Air New Zealand, a leading Asia Pacific Airlines etc.

Lawrence Cordes

Director, South East Asia Centre

4. Lawrance Cordes
Lawrence has been in Thailand for over 16 year in hotel/restaurant operations, F&B management within 5 star Hotels such as ACCOR, Toscana Valley Hotels, Six Senses Resorts and Spa’s, Pacific City Club private business club, Aldama Foods group of restaurants and most recently at SEAC, South East Asia Center, professional business development and education centre in association with Stanford University.
Lawrence grew up in one of Vancouver’s finest French eating establishments offering him a good jump start in his career in the hospitality business. Under his father’s tutelage and culinary schooling, this provided a solid base to learn these important hospitality management skills at an early age.
Lawrence is married to Maneeon (Bow) for 14 years whom owns and operates two campuses of International Montessori Kindergartens. Lawrence and Bow have a son, Luc 9 and daughter Celicia 10.

Caroline Kwan

Vice President, Corporate Solutions, MBMG-Group

5. Caroline Kwang
After over 20 years of specialization in Start-up operations, Aviation expertise, Marketing, Investment and Customer Service principles, Caroline recently joined the MBMG’s Corporate Solutions team to provide corporate advice, investment advice and facilitates strategic business transactions on behalf of a wide range of clients in South-East Asia and further field.
Her career history includes practical knowledge at identifying and capturing new business opportunities, sales & marketing, contract negotiation and project management.
Notable achievements include successfully started-up new operations for a then US Fortune 500 company at Macau International Airport – Passenger Service Operations as well as setting up the first Asia Pacific office in Hong Kong for the world’s largest philatelic agency with headquarters in New York and formulated marketing strategies to promote public interest in postage stamps and other philatelic products issued on behalf of more than 70 countries around the world.
Caroline was born in the UK, grew up in Canada (Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto). She studied and worked in the United States before being dispatched as an expatriate to Macau and Hong Kong. She is fluent in Mandarin and Cantonese and is very active within the Hong Kong community in Bangkok.

Ron Livingston

President & CEO, International Environmental Management Co. Ltd.

6. Ron Livingston
Ron Livingston has more than 30 years of professional experience in the management of natural resources. He holds a B.Sc. and a Masters Degree in Natural Resource Management from the University of Manitoba.
Mr. Livingston is currently the President and Chief Executive Officer of International Environmental Management, which has offices in Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Myanmar. Mr. Livingston is also Chairman of Oxigon, a software company that specializes in Health Care and Banking Solutions. Mr. Livingston is a former Vice-Chairman and Director of the Board of Trade of Thailand and a past president of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Thailand.
Mr. Livingston has served on the CanCham Board for the past 25 years. Before coming to Thailand, Mr. Livingston was an ADM/Director of the Department of Renewable Resources and Environment with the Government of the Northwest Territories. Mr. Livingston has a daughter (Grace) and son (David) currently studying at UBC in Vancouver. Mr. Livingston is a Master in Taekwondo and a Rotarian. Mr. Livingston is a strong supporter of sustainable development and the promotion of Canadian business in SE Asia.

Dan Mckay

Director, Stonelotus Ventures

7. Dan McKay
Beginning in 1998, Dan McKay spent 10 years in Thailand with the Churchill Pryce Group working in corporate financial advisory, with a focus on debt restructuring and boutique M&A. He managed a team of 30 advisory staff (ex-patriots & Thai nationals), completing financial restructures carrying over USD 625 million of debt. Industries covered included: petroleum, property development, manufacturing, agriculture, and media.
After returning to Canada with SGS for 7 years, Dan returned to Thailand to focus on investing in, and working with, early-stage businesses. As a director of Stonelotus Ventures, Dan assists businesses in raising capital, setting strategy, and implementing business management systems.
Since 1999 Dan has been actively involved as an advisor with Thammasat University’s Masters in International Marketing (MIM) programme, mentoring graduate student teams on developing comprehensive business plans built around new products and services. From his arrival in Thailand in 1998 until his return to Canada, Dan was an active volunteer with the CanCham. He has rekindled his involvement with the chamber since returning to Thailand in late 2015, serving as an advisor to the Board throughout 2016. 

Dean Outerson

Head of Marketing & Communications, Sasin Graduate Institute of Business Administration, Chulalongkorn University

9. Dean Outerson
Dean Outerson has worked in Thailand for the past 11 years and has 27 years experience living and working in Asia, having previously lived in Japan and Indonesia. Currently, he is Head of Marketing and Corporate Communications at Sasin Graduate Institute of Business Administration of Chulalongkorn University, Thailand’s first internationally accredited business school. Dean heads the team that handles the marketing and recruiting efforts of the graduate business school.
In his previous position as Director of Publications/Managing Editor at Veritas Graphics, he worked closely for a number of years with the British Chamber of Commerce, Australian Chamber, and the New Zealand Chamber on their publications. He has been an active member of the Rotary Club of Bangkok South since 2007 and has served on the Board of Directors seven out of the past nine years. He has a background in writing, editing, and journalism and has a keen interest in digital marketing and social media, education, literature and history.
Born in Tillsonburg Ontario, his family moved to Florida when he was 10 years old, and he graduated from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in 1990. He grew up playing hockey and soccer, and briefly played in the hockey league in Bangkok, until an injury forced him to retire from the game. He is a long-suffering Toronto Maple Leafs fan, and an optimistic Arsenal fan.

Sunny Patel

Managing Director, Trends Digital Ltd

10. Sunny Patel
Currently Managing Director at Trends Digital Ltd, providing Social Media & Digital professional services for International companies. Sample partner clients include Lenovo, Motorola, Intel, Mars International, Unilever, Minor International, among others.
Trends Digital was founded in April 2013 and based in Bangkok, Thailand with a team of ~40 specialists providing solutions with platform partners such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, Line (Naver), Twitter, and others. Services also include Social Media Monitoring, Social Listening, and Consumer Management software & tools for sentiment and social media intelligence.
Sunny is originally from Montreal, Canada and attended University of Western Ontarion (UWO) in London, Ontario with a BA (Honors) in Philosophy, MBA from INSEAD, and CFA designation.
After working in Toronto, Ontario for Towers Perrin (now Towers Watson), Sunny attended INSEAD full time MBA graduating in July 2005. He subsequently move to London, UK where we worked at Global Asset Management (GAM) in the Hedge Fund and Fund of Funds group. He also enrolled in summer program at Peking University in Beijing in 2010 and holds a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.

John Stevens

Managing Partner, Stonelotus Ventures

11. John Stevens
John Stevens is a Canadian entrepreneur living in Bangkok with business interests in Asia Pacific. John is Managing Partner of Stonelotus Ventures – which provides angel investment and strategic support to early stage businesses in Southeast Asia. Since 2011, the group has funded and provides ongoing management support for several investee companies. John’s key areas of expertise include deal origination, fundraising, strategy, marketing and investor relations.
Formerly, John was Founder and Managing Director of Rabbit Rewards – the loyalty and membership program for Rabbit Card – Thailand’s leading mass transit and retail smartcard under BTS Group.
Prior to Rabbit Rewards, John was Founder and MD of POV Media Group – a leading media company headquartered in Thailand which operates one of the largest digital out of home advertising networks in the country. John sold POV to VGI Global Media PCL in 2009.
John is a Vancouverite by birth and is a graduate of the University of British Columbia. He later attended the Asia Pacific Management Cooperative Program at Capilano College which led to his post-graduate degree and internship at the Embassy of Canada in Bangkok.
John has served on the board of the Thai-Canadian Chamber of Commerce from 1999 to 2005 and from 2010 to present. He has been awarded Entrepreneur of the Year and is active in organizing several Chamber events and leading a number of marketing initiatives.

Derek van Pelt

Partner & Director, Smiling Albino Co., Ltd

12. Derek van Pelt
Derek van Pelt has been in the Kingdom of Thailand since 1997 when he came to work for the Thai Royal Family at Chitralada Palace School for a year.
Mr. van Pelt is currently a Partner & Director in Smiling Albino Ltd. His prior work experience also includes working for as well as starting and subsequently selling Datcorp Co. Ltd.
Mr. van Pelt joined the CanCham Thailand Board in 2010 and was previously a past Vice President. He is frequently seen at CanCham Thailand events either behind the scenes or behind the microphone. He looks forward to continuing his work with, and support of, the Canadian community in Thailand.

Michael White

Regional Director, IMAS Group

13. Michael White
Michael White currently serves as Regional Director of IMAS, a leader in business data analytics and retail productivity projects.
Previously, Mr. White was the regional sales manager of DGC Group, a Bangkok-based provider of communication systems and technical services to some of the world’s leading telecom operators.
Mr. White first came to Thailand in 2003 and worked on the head Asia desk of Deutsche Presse, covering all regional news stories including the war in Iraq.
Mr. White is a Vancouver Islander by birth and a graduate of the University of Victoria. He has been active on the Can Cham board since 2005, and is a principal in event organizing for both the Flying Farangs hockey and CanCham Golf institutions.


In Alphabetical Order