Jean was born in Charlottetown, PEI, a 7th generation Islander, and moved to Victoria in 1989 with her husband, Jim Griffith.
Her education and career as a counsellor has spanned all levels and types of education, from kindergarten to university, and from trades to graduate school. A special interest in people helping people led to an annual Peer Counselling Institute at UPEI, training trainers, and provincial and national workshops on the topic. She wrote the working manual for the UPEI institute as well as a career development manual for Camosun College.
Her board experience began as secretary of the Student Union of Prince of Wales College and continued with 6 years on the Atlantic Guidance Counselling Association, 2 as president. She has been an elected municipal councillor; president of the Victoria Society of Artists; secretary of the Victoria branch of the Canadian Federation of Artists; chair of the St Michaels University School faculty association; a founding member of the CHAS board when it relocated to Victoria and created CCPA; and 5 year chair of her 55 unit strata corporation.
As part of those experiences she has initiated the development and revision of the constitutions and/or bylaws of several organizations, injecting common sense and good practices as well as ensuring compliance with various aspects of legislation. Her philosophy is that governance is easy to do right and doing it right provides a solid foundation.
Her interest in the performing arts goes back to childhood but came alive at the Confederation Centre in Charlottetown.
She believes that joining a board requires a commitment to the best interests of the organization, respecting other board members, listening, collaborating to solve problems, sharing the workload, showing up, doing homework, and having fun. Service is an opportunity, not a duty.