Multicultural Council of Windsor & Essex County



Multicultural Council of Windsor and Essex County
Board of Directors hires new Executive Director.

WINDSOR, ON: The Board of Directors of the Multicultural Cultural Council of Windsor and Essex County (MCC) is pleased to announce that Fred Francis has accepted the position of Executive Director (ED), effective April 1, 2022. He will succeed current ED, Kathleen Thomas, who is retiring after 30 years with the agency.

“After a comprehensive selection process by our hiring committee, we are delighted to share that Fred Francis has accepted the position of Executive Director,” said Allison Johnson, President MCC Board of Directors. “With Fred’s collaborative and engaging leadership approach, wide-ranging experience, and demonstrated commitment to creating a welcoming community for all, we are confident the MCC is well positioned for future success as we continue building on the leadership demonstrated over the last three decades.”

Francis brings a wealth of experience and knowledge in settlement and integration, governance, operations, community engagement, as well as a dedication to the promotion of diversity and inclusion. Francis started his professional career with the Multicultural Council in 2007 before entering the private sector in 2012. He returned to the organization in 2018 as Director of Programs and Development.

“It is a privilege to follow in the footsteps of Kathleen Thomas and build on her thirty-year legacy of creating a more welcoming community for all.” said Fred Francis. “As I transition into this new role, I look forward to working with MCC staff, volunteers and partners in ensuring initiatives pertaining to diversity and equality remain at the forefront of our community. I am honoured to accept this position and greatly appreciate the trust of the MCC Board of Directors.”

“We are grateful for the dedication, compassion, and visionary leadership shown by Kathleen Thomas throughout her three decades with the organization and her commitment to continue supporting the MCC through this transition.” said Allison Johnson. “While we know she will never truly leave the MCC family, we wish her well in her retirement and thank her for the impact she has made on our community. The Board is excited to work closely with Mr. Francis as we embrace our vision of being an innovative leader in facilitating the development of an inclusive and welcoming community.”

For more information on the Multicultural Council, please visit our website at

Mr. Francis may be contacted directly at or (519) 990-4138.





WINDSOR, ONTARIO – The Multicultural Council of Windsor and Essex County (MCC) has announced the 20thanniversary recipients of the annual Harmony, Champion, and Inspire Awards.

“It is my great privilege each year to take part in celebrating the efforts and accomplishments of those who contribute to creating such a wonderful and welcoming community,” said Ms. Kathleen Thomas, Executive Director of the Multicultural Council, “and we at the MCC are so proud that the diversity of both our gracious partners and our worthy recipients reflect the rich cultural identity of Windsor-Essex. Our award honorees come from different countries and different backgrounds, and have vastly different stories- but they are united by a spirit of harmony and of community. We are proud and excited to finally gather again to recognize the recipients of the Harmony, Champion, and Inspire Awards.”

The 2022 Harmony Award, recognizing individuals or groups who have made an outstanding contribution to building a welcoming community for all, will be presented to Mrs. Anita Imperioli.

Following the loss of her infant son Michael to cancer nearly 40 years ago, Anita Imperioli dedicated herself to advocating on behalf of patients and families seeking supportive care and treatment. She leaned heavily on her personal experiences to work to ensure full access to the best medical treatments, state-of-the art equipment, and expertise for those in Windsor-Essex.

She is the founder and President of In Honour of the Ones We Love, a charitable organization with a 25 year history of supporting patients with cancer, life threatening illnesses, and different abilities. The organization offers a calendar of diverse and inclusive programs across the region designed to enhance community partnerships and support patients and families.

With decades of fundraising leadership and guidance aimed at improving patient and family experiences, and with millions of dollars raised across Windsor-Essex, Anita Imperioli’s impact on our community remains far-reaching. Through In Honour of the Ones We Love, her network of caring and dedicated partners continue to expand and enhance the services available to those in need, and to offer education and engagement to our community at large.

The Champion Award celebrates the contributions that first-generation Canadians make to our community. The 2022 Champion Award honouree is Dr. Christos (Chris) Spirou.

Born in Greece, Dr. Christos (Chris) Spirou arrived in Canada at the age of 8 with his family, and was raised in on Windsor’s West Side. He attended post-secondary studies as well as medical school at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario, and then returned to Windsor to begin his medical career.

Dr. Spirou has been in general and family practice in Windsor-Essex since 1991, and has served as the Chief of Occupational Health at Hotel Dieu Grace Hospital, an Occupational Health Physician at Windsor Regional Hospital, and the Medical Director of the Rose City Centre for Occupational Health. Dr. Spirou also assisted in the creation of ACT Medical Research- Group North, and the Essex Rural Medical Hub.

While remaining extremely active in the Greek community locally, including serving as a board member for the Greek Orthodox Community of Windsor, and as the Chairperson for the Carrousel of the Nations Greek Village, Dr. Spirou takes great pride in the work he has done alongside the Rotary Club of Essex in Ghana. Together with his wife Kim, they have established a much-needed medical clinic and raised over $1 million to meet water and educational needs.

The Inspire Award was established three years ago and honours a newcomer to Windsor-Essex for their perseverance, optimism, and the positive example they provide to our community. The 2022 recipient is Mr. Moussa Keita.

Moussa and his family arrived in Windsor in November 2016, having spent 14 years in refugee camps after fleeing their home in Côte d’Ivoire. Moussa’s father and older brother were both killed, leaving Moussa, his mother, two older brothers- one of whom is unable to walk, and two younger sister to make their way through the war-torn countryside and across international borders.

Moussa assumed a leadership role in his family, ensuring food and other essentials were available, and work tirelessly to provide while the family waited to hear of their fate. When finally told that they would be coming to Canada, it was Moussa who coordinated all aspects of their journey.

Under Moussa’s guidance, the family has thrived in Windsor-Essex. All family members are either working or in school, or both. Moussa is employed full-time with the French Public School Board, and has his license and has purchased a car. Moussa has been able to access community support programs for his brother, and the family recently purchased a home. His resilience of spirit has made him a shining example to our newcomers and to our community.

The presentation of these awards will take place at the 20th anniversary celebration of the Herb Gray Harmony Awards Gala, Thursday, May 5, 2022 at the Ciociaro Club.

Tickets for the event are $100 per person, $950 for a Table of 10, and $1500 for Corporate Tables.  Sponsorship opportunities are still available.  For more information, please visit


Media Contact

Fred Francis

MCC Director of, Programs and Development

(519) 990-4138


The mission of the Multicultural Council of Windsor is to create a welcoming community for all

through education, community engagement and the promotion of diversity and equality.

Our programs are funded by: