Our Family & Team

October 2019 Trillium Communities purchases Norgarden and Peninsula retirement communities from Tidman Group.

After 24 years of creating an exceptional living experience for seniors in our community Ron and John Tidman have handed the reins to Omar Lalani of Trillium Communities.

“The most important thing for Ron and I when we went looking for a purchaser, is that they understood the importance of our commitment to ensuring the best possible experience for the seniors who live in our communities, and for the staff that have helped to create something very unique and outstanding” says John Tidman of Tidman Group. “We were not interested in a large corporate model or a multinational and were seeking a local, family owned company and that is why Trillium Communities is such a great fit”.

Trillium Communities was founded in 2004 by Omar Lalani and his uncle.  Their goal is to provide seniors with the highest standard of care to improve their quality of life and help to maintain their independence whether it’s in Independent, Assisted Living, or LTC.  “We are excited to have Norgarden and The Peninsula under the Trillium Umbrella and look to them as our flagship communities, we are also pleased that Denise Tidman (and the current staff) will be staying on as the Executive Director and continuing the tradition of excellent customer service that Norgarden and The Peninsula is known for.” says Omar Lalani.  The importance in keeping it local and family owned has been the key to making this sale become a reality.

The Peninsula’s staff is just one of the many reasons why the Peninsula remains Vancouver Island’s premier retirement community. Our warm, well-trained staff are available 24 hours a day to assist with whatever is necessary to make your retirement experience as carefree and enjoyable as possible.  “We welcome the new ownership and are looking forward to maintaining our high standards and impeccable service”.

Portrait image of Denise Tidman, Executive Director

Denise Tidman, Executive Director

Denise Tidman carries on her family’s tradition of excellence as our Executive Director. Born and raised on the Peninsula, Denise started out in real estate but when Norgarden opened 25 years ago, she came home to the family business. She started in the marketing department at Norgarden and at the same time went to back to school and obtained a Diploma in Health Care Administration. After a year, Denise became the Executive Director of Norgarden Estates and oversees all aspects of our two buildings. Denise brings a special quality to her leadership, and in doing so has created a community of inclusion and openheartedness for both staff and residents that separates our communities from any other.

Denise spent 6 years on the board of BC Senior Living Association which developed the Seal of Approval standards which governs self-selecting retirement communities across BC.

In her early 20’s she rode professionally with a Sales and Training Barn and it is still a passion of hers, but now she does it for pure enjoyment. Denise is married to an amazing husband and has a wonderful daughter. They live on the Saanich Peninsula on a hobby farm.

Portrait image of Leslie Whittaker, Assistant Manager

Leslie Whittaker, Assistant Manager

Leslie has had a number of very interesting positions before she came to Norgarden Estates.

Working at Norgarden Estates was like coming home for Leslie. “The culture here is so different than any other place I have worked, it is quite simply amazing.” Leslie loves coming to work each day, interacting with both our Residents and our team. Leslie brings a wonderful depth of knowledge having owned her own nurse care business that helped many of our residents over the years. This enables her to understand the emotional and physical needs of our residents and ensure that these needs are met on a daily basis.

Portrait image of Teresa Ainey, Housekeeping Manager

Teresa Ainey, Housekeeping Manager

Teresa Ainey Joined Norgarden Estates in 2008 and became our Housekeeping Manager in 2019

She is responsible for maintaining both the residents' suites and common areas of the building and does so with a sharp eye for detail and very high standards.

Portrait image of Kai Alberring, Maintenance Manager

Kai Alberring, Maintenance Manager

With the retirement of Wilfred (after 25 years with us!), Kai was promoted to Manager. Kai brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to a department that depends on shrewd analysis, quick pivoting and knowing how to fix pretty much anything.

Kai is married to the love of his life, has 2 beautiful children and when time allows enjoys time on the water in his sail boat with his family.

Portrait image of Linda Duivenvoorden, Accounts Manager

Linda Duivenvoorden, Accounts Manager

Linda grew up on a dairy farm in eastern Canada and moved to Alberta to pursue a career in business. After a decade of moving and building her career, she settled on an acreage in Alberta where she and her husband raised 3 children. Country life included all sorts of pets, large and small. Caring for animals seemed to be genetic and provided a wonderful life experience for her children.
Over the following years, Linda found her niche in business management and has worked for small to medium sized businesses. Her focus and passion were on improving the accuracy and the efficiencies of process and accounting.
Since moving to Vancouver Island in 2012, Linda continued to work for small owner operated businesses. She has now found her home at Norgarden, where she hopes to add value to the organization through the utilization of her business skills.
Linda enjoys living in beautiful ‘Sidney by the Sea’. Her desire for a balanced and healthy lifestyle remains her focus and she enjoys hiking and kayaking with her husband and their dog.

Portrait image of Kathleen Harapnuk, Activities Coordinator

Kathleen Harapnuk, Activities Coordinator

16 years ago when Kathleen’s own father was in a retirement community, she marveled at all the activities available to him and thought that being an Activities Coordinator would be very rewarding. She knew Denise Tidman and one day when she was talking to Denise she mentioned that very thing. As it happens the Tidman’s had just opened The Peninsula and the current Activities Coordinator was about to retire. Kathleen was hired and quickly grew into the job, learning so much about what our residents need and want.

Kathleen has quite an artistic flair and loves creating not only new activities, but using her artistic talents to decorate (Christmas is a winter wonder land at The Peninsula for example) and design all manner of things. She loves coming to work each day and thinks of it as having 139 grandparents. She loves to make their dreams of an activity they would like to do come true.

Kathleen has been married 30 years and has two amazing kids, one who used to work for us and one who has been with us for 3 years now.

Portrait image of Shawn Heywood, Executive Chef

Shawn Heywood, Executive Chef

Shawn stated his culinary career in 1992 and received his Red Seal Endorsement in 1999. His partner at the time worked in the kitchen at Peninsula and often told him what a great place it was to work. Shawn quit his job and came to The Peninsula in 2002 and is now Head Chef. He loves coming to work each day When asked “What keeps me here?” “Working with fresh ingredients, creating all our meals from scratch, working for a reliable and well respected family (the Tidman’s) and keeping residents happy with the quality of our food”.

Shawn has an adorable son who keeps him busy when he isn’t fishing, swimming, playing a variety of sports or working on classic muscle cars.

Portrait image of Leah Ralph Dining Room  Manager

Leah Ralph Dining Room Manager

Leah was born in the Royal Jubilee as a second generation Victorian. She spent her 20’s wintering in Mexico with her mother and summers at the Strathcona where she became the first woman manager of the Sticky Wicket. When the Olson’s opened a sister fine dining restaurant originally called Capital Steak house and then Hugo’s Leah worked behind the bar and in management. While in Mexico she and her family opened a restaurant called La Tia Katrina in old town Puerto Vallarta which quickly became a local and tourist hot spot. She is proud to have been part of the management team of the Oak Bay Marine Restaurant one of Victoria’s most beloved fine dining seafood restaurants.

After having her two beautiful daughter she moved out to the Peninsula which she thought would be temporary but quickly fell in love with the beauty, community, and calmness that this location has to offer. She has lived in the area for 12 years now.
She commonly says that she pounces out of bed to get to work and interact with the residents and staff. “I’ve never experienced such a warm and inviting environment, not to mention the quality and love that Shawn and his team put into each meal. Working here is like a dream.”

Portrait image of Otis Henry Hayden, Champion Snuggler

Otis Henry Hayden, Champion Snuggler

Otis, our resident dog is a 11 year old miniature schnauzer who loves to come to work with his “humom” Denise. He loves the attention he gets from both residents and staff, though does tend to get jealous when other dogs come for a visit! He is a laid back little guy who loves to be adored and showered with love and treats. He is a world champion snuggler and loves a good belly rub. Otis is an integral part of our culture and is part of our activities program as the “head dog” of our Doggy Visits program.

At The Peninsula, you can leave the details to us.


V8L 2B2

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