UNA-Canada has lost a friend, colleague and supporter.
The Board of Directors and staff of UNA-Canada join friends and family of James Lee in mourning his recent untimely passing. He was only 61 but he had packed a wealth of living into those years.
James was deeply proud of his Metis heritage and of his ties to Manitoba. As an obituary noted, he often laughed about how many jobs he had worked at as a young man, but he found his calling when he began his career in fundraising in 1994 in support of causes about which he cared deeply. Prior to working with the United Nations Association in Canada, he worked with Ducks Unlimited, KCI Ketchum Canada, the Canadian Council for Christian and Jews and the Canadian Red Cross
James joined UNA-Canada as our National Development Director in 2014, just in time to be a part of a session in Toronto with then UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. He was chuffed to have that as his first experience in his new "home". Until he left us last December, he had spearheaded our Direct Mail outreach to thousands of members and supporters across the country; developed key connections with corporate and foundation sponsors; managed our essential annual fund-raising galas; and been a valued member of our senior management team. He believed deeply in his work, and he felt a great deal of pride in being able to ‘do his bit’ to bring more humanity to the world.
Outside of work, James had a wide circle of friends with whom he shared his love of good food and a party or dinner, camping weekends, his little old bright blue Mini Cooper - always in good humour and with a wonderful joke to share. His two cats were beloved company.
Rest in peace James - you will be missed!