Meet the Common Approach team

The Common Approach is a community-driven initiative. Each part of our expanding network of partners and supporters, including the Champions group, a national social purpose organizations advisory committee, a social funders advisory board, and a newly formed board of directors, among others, are playing a foundational role and helping to set the stage for widespread adoption of its standards. 

Supporting all these groups is our staff team, which serves as a secretariat for the Common Approach. 

Kate Ruff

Executive Director and Head of Research

The Common Approach was a collective vision brought to life by a grant and some great people. As the lead on that grant and the next, Kate anchors the team’s focus in a perseverant patience that understands the long and winding road of systems change. 

Kate is a full-time faculty member at Carleton University. As an academic, Kate is mindful of what’s gone before and the need to situate the Common Approach in dialogue with other standard-setting and impact measurement initiatives. She is grateful that her academic role affords her the time to do just that.

Kate spends much time thinking about the power of standards—both to do good and harm. The Common Approach must be values-driven; not results-driven.  She is thrilled by the incredible group of values-driven staff, directors and partners that have come together to help articulate a  flexible impact measurement standard that is thoughtful about power and where it is held and how it is used. 

Photo of Valerie Adriaanse

Valerie Adriaanse

Head of Communications, Community and Culture

Valerie Adriaanse, Head of Communications, Community and Culture, is a multi-passionate sustainability professional with a penchant for storytelling. She applies this gift to clearly articulate the Common Approach’s mission and vision, and connect with our growing community.

Since turning her degree in English Literature into a career in environmental sustainability and renewable energy, Valerie has over a decade of experience with charities and social enterprises looking for a better way to do things, and she knows exactly how to encourage them to expand their metrics for success. In pursuit of better ways to operate the economy, this Climate Reality Leader is on a mission to secure a more equitable future where we all have the chance to thrive. After all, we’re all stuck on this rock together.

A Southern Ontario gal, Valerie is a global citizen and lifelong learner who can often be found singing along to her ever-growing collection of vinyl records.

Photo of Valerie Adriaanse

Garth Yule

Head of Operations

As Head of Operations, Garth ensures that our team has the tools and systems in place to do our best work. He helps facilitate our shared strategy to achieve the Common Approach’s vision for impact measurement standards.

Garth’s career has been varied, including stints with private companies, government, non-profits, and grassroots organizations, with a common thread of social responsibility. A skilled communicator, Garth is known for his ability to bring complex ideas and concepts to life in interesting ways.

Garth grew up all over Ontario, ultimately finishing highschool in Romania and then France, due to his father’s work in the energy sector. He now spends his time on Canada’s West coast with his family, where the occasional dance party may break out thanks to their shared love of electronic music.

Photo of Valerie Adriaanse

Sharad Barkataki

Head of Data Standards

As Head of Data Standards, Sharad works with the Common Approach team to align software companies and social purpose organizations with the data standard and ensure the data is consistent and comparable for social purpose organizations and social financial institutions

Sharad is passionate about using data and technology to improve social outcomes and create positive change in the world. He has had experiences working in academic, nonprofit, and international development organizations, and for the last 10 years, he has led monitoring and evaluation teams and international development programming across 9 countries and helped to evaluate social programmes and projects at the national and subnational levels.

With lived experiences in ten countries, Sharad enjoys Canada’s multicultural heritage and focus, its warm and welcoming people, and its vast natural beauty. In his spare time, he loves to swim (or alternatively flail uselessly in the pool, depending on the perspective) or hunting for new restaurants and foods.

Photo of Valerie Adriaanse

Mikayla Loyer

Manager, Business Integration

As Manager of Business Integration, Mikayla works with social purpose organizations to advise, select, and implement the best software solutions aligned to the Common Impact Data Standard. She will also document and advise the Common Approach Team on feedback from social purpose organizations regarding software implementation challenges and opportunities.

Mikayla has dedicated her career to understanding business problems and cultivating new ways of finding solutions, mainly through business requirements analysis, data management, and software development. She has experience working in private, public, and non-profit organizations, providing her with unique knowledge she hopes to apply in her role at Common Approach.

Outside of work, Mikayla enjoys spending her time in the great outdoors, from camping to playing sports. However, she is studious at heart and will often be found learning a new skill whenever she can.

Photo of Valerie Adriaanse

Laurentia Perrin

Lead, Impact Measurement for Portfolio Managers

In her role as Lead, Impact measurement for Portfolio managers, Laurentia supports key impact-focused asset managers and their investees in determining and implementing practices to align with the Common Approach standards.

Over the past six years, Laurentia has supported more than eighty Quebec entrepreneurs in their strategic development and impact management, and she’s eager to promote impact measurement in the social finance ecosystem that puts the needs of social purpose organizations first and prioritizes flexibility and stakeholder voices.

After living and working in France, the United States, Germany, and Côte d’Ivoire, Laurentia moved to Canada for its multicultural heritage, progressive spirit and stunning natural beauty.

Photo of Valerie Adriaanse

Rachel Gordon

Communications Coordinator

Communications coordinator Rachel Gordon is a creative communications professional with a background in media production, writing and graphic design. She applies this skillset to grow the Common Approach following while delivering high-quality content to our existing community.

Rachel has worked with multiple Social Purpose Organizations, with focuses ranging from local activism to historical preservation and youth climate justice. Through these experiences, she has developed a passion for centring accessibility in communications. She is happy to bring this experience to Common Approach and grow with such a remarkable team.

When not working, Rachel spends much of her time building lego and drinking tea while discussing current events with her cat, Millie.

Photo of Valerie Adriaanse

Sam Batliner

Program Coordinator

In her role as Program Coordinator, Sam is instrumental in developing and maintaining efficient systems and processes for the entire Common Approach team.

With a strong focus on prioritizing people, Sam’s unwavering dedication is fueled by her deep passion for shaping a future characterized by fairness and inclusivity. This drive brings her immense excitement to contribute to the meaningful endeavours underway at Common Approach.

Beyond her professional endeavours, Sam’s interests encompass a deep dive into the realm of psychology, cherished moments spent in the company of her spirited canine companion, and a passionate love for exploring new foods and dancing.

More like this

Meet the Technical Committee

Meet the Technical Committee

The Technical Committee works to ensure that the Common Impact Data Standard and Common Form are driven by community and meet the needs of social purpose organizations, social financial institutions, and software organizations.

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