Our Organization and Board Members

Vision and Mission

Our vision: mature learners pursuing knowledge, exchanging
ideas and embracing innovation.

Our mission: TAL-KW enriches the lives of its patrons by
providing intellectually stimulating programs.

Our values:

·        Respect for all perspectives

·        Accessible and affordable learning

·        Connection with our community


TAL-KW is a not-for-profit corporation run by volunteers. Board members may be elected for a maximum of six consecutive years.

The 2023 Annual General Meeting was held on Monday June 12, 2023 at 1:00 pm at RIM Park. The minutes for the 2023 AGM are available here.

The reviewed financial statements for the year ending March 31, 2023 are available here.

TAL-KW is a member of the Third Age Network (TAN).

Board of Directors 2023 - 2024

Valerie Beckett

Past President

Kathleen Hohner


Sylvia Ranson

Secretary & Archivist

Elizabeth Ruby

Assistant Registrar

Susan Simone


Phil Thomas

Technical Director

Betsy Petker

Program Director

Doug Koegler

Program Team

Kathleen Woodcock

Program Team

Sande Minke

Program Team

Program Committee

Betsy Petker

Board Member, Program Director

Doug Koegler

Board Member

Sande Minke

Board Member

Kathleen Woodcock

Board Member

Betti Erb


Historical Notes

The organization has existed since 1988, when Ruth Clark spearheaded a
group to form Third Age Learning in Kitchener-Waterloo. Other founding
members were John Boulden, Miriam Butler, Bea Fleischauer, Florence
Hayes, Jean and Carl Hennigar, Sally Jefferson, Trudy Motz and Vera Wood.

Originally, lectures were held in the Kitchener Auditorium. In the fall of 2002,
because of increased membership, Third Age Learning moved to the Century
Room at the Manulife Sportsplex, RIM Park, Waterloo.

Fall 2013 saw a further expansion into the Forbes Family Hall at RIM Park in
order to accommodate increasing demand (maximum 650 seats).

When the Covid 19 pandemic struck in 2020, lectures went online with Zoom
webinar. The online only format continued through the winter 2023 series. The
spring 2023 series was presented in a hybrid format with some attending
lectures in person at RIM Park and others attending the lectures at home via
Zoom webinar.

Prior to the pandemic, TAL-KW offered two lecture series in the fall and two in
the winter. In the 2020 shift to online lectures, the program offering included
only one lecture series in the fall and one in the winter. In 2022, a spring
series was introduced for the first time.

TAL-KW was incorporated in 2021 as a not-for-profit corporation to succeed
its prior status as an association. The board directors are the members of the
corporation. The by-laws of the corporation identify all ticket purchasers for
lecture series as patrons rather than as members.

What Our Patrons Say

I get to hear interesting people speaking about topics that I am interested in. I am part of a community of like-minded people who read and who are involved at a deeper level of understanding. Thank you TAL. (2022)

I learn a lot about subjects I often don’t even think about. To see the presenters who love what they do inspires me just to be more open and thoughtful in all that I do. (2023)

You give an in-depth analysis of a topic. You have some very good program developers who look at many different angles on a topic. With so much misinformation abounding in today’s society, TAL is becoming essential as a reliable source of information! (2023)

The TAL series I have attended, either in person or online, have been varied, current and pertinent in topic and issue. I also appreciate that the lectures are given at a high level but in layperson’s terms. A mini-university course! (2023)

What Our Speakers Say

After the last lecture one participant handed me a note. It read: “Thank you for an excellent series. It opened my eyes in many ways, which made me more respectful of many people’s points of view. The background and facts upon which each speaker based his/her presentation contributed to my historical understanding of people and therefore contributed to my respect for where they are coming from as a person.  I need to be broader in my respect for all people and more accepting. It leads to working peacefully with all people, enjoying each other, and working out peaceful solutions in which we can live and grow together.”

 As educators, could we ask for a better response?

Prof. David Seljak, University of Waterloo, Religious Studies


TAL-KW contributes to the following bursaries with funds declared by the board to be surplus to the needs of TAL-KW.
Since 1992, TAL-KW has given money to an endowment for financial assistance to deserving graduate students in gerontology studies in the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, University of Waterloo. The annual bursary is awarded to a student who proves financial need.

In 2010, an endowment fund was established at Conestoga College Institute of Technology & Advanced Learning. Beginning in 2012, an annual bursary has been awarded to a full-time student who is enrolled in a School of Health and Life Sciences and Community Services program which contains a gerontology component. Students must demonstrate their financial need as well as an interest in working with seniors.

In 2014, TAL-KW established the Third Age Learning Kitchener-Waterloo Graduate Student Bursary in Gerontology and Movement Disorders Research at Wilfrid Laurier University.  An annual bursary may be awarded to a full-time graduate student who is conducting research related to gerontology and/or movement disorders. The recipient will have a minimum cumulative GPA of 7.0 and proven financial need. First preference for these funds will be given to graduate students who are conducting research at the Movement Disorders Research & Rehabilitation Centre (MDRC).