Biographies – UCC President Alexandra Chyczij, UCC 1st VP Andrea Kopylech, UCC 2nd VP Alex Ilchenko
UCC National President Alexandra Chyczij
Alexandra Chyczij was unanimously elected and sworn in as President of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) on December 8, 2018. Previously, she served as 1st Vice President of the UCC.
Alexandra Chyczij is a committed leader, activist and volunteer, dedicating her efforts to serving the Ukrainian community in Canada. The UCC coordinates and represents the interests of one of Canada’s largest ethnocultural communities (1.35 million). The UCC brings together under one umbrella all the national, provincial and local Ukrainian organizations and has been instrumental in shaping Canada’s social, economic and political landscape.
Alexandra Chyczij is the Executive Director of the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association (CCCA), the national voice of in-house counsel in Canada. With a membership more than 5000-strong, the CCCA is a section of the Canadian Bar Association, the essential ally and advocate of the legal profession in Canada. Prior to that, Alexandra was CEO and Executive Director of The Advocates’ Society, a national not-for-profit association for trial lawyers, judges and advocates. Previously, Alexandra practiced civil litigation.
Alexandra is a member of the Endowment Council of the Canadian First World War Internment Recognition Fund, which supports the commemoration and recognition of the experiences of ethnocultural communities affected by Internment during WWI. The UCC was one of the leading stakeholders in establishing the Internment Recognition Fund.
Alexandra is an Executive member of the Board of Directors of the Ukrainian Canadian Bar Association, which maintains a national network of lawyers, judges, paralegals and law students of Ukrainian origin in order to create professional opportunities, to mentor law students and young lawyers, to conduct professional development, as well as to assist Ukraine with respect to the development of its legal system.
In 2017, Alexandra co-chaired the Team Invictus Ukraine Gala Event attended by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Canada) and President Poroshenko (Ukraine), which raised $100,000 for the Defenders of Ukraine Fund, providing aid to Ukrainian veterans of the war with Russia.
Alexandra is co-chair of the Canada-Ukraine Stakeholder Advisory Committee, a forum for consultation between the Government of Canada (Global Affairs Canada) and the Ukrainian Canadian community (represented by UCC). Alexandra was a member of the delegation of Canada’s Minister of International Development, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, on her first visit to Ukraine, in 2018. Minister Bibeau was the first G7 Minister to travel to the line of contact of the war with Russia being fought in eastern Ukraine. In 2016, Alexandra was a member of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s delegation on the Prime Minister’s visit to Ukraine to witness the signature of the Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement.
Alexandra is a member of the Fundraising Committee for the Konowal Walk at the Hill 70 Memorial, commemorating the bravery of Cpl. Filip Konowal at the Battle of Hill 70 (August 22, 1917) for which he was recognized with the highest medal of the British Empire, the Victoria Cross. He was the only Ukrainian Canadian ever so distinguished.
For many years, Alexandra has worked with the Ukrainian Canadian Congress and the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association on legal issues, advocating for matters affecting the administration of justice, rule of law, human and civil rights. She has conducted research and advocated for recognition of the Holodomor (Ukrainian Famine) as a genocide and for recognition of the unjust internment of Ukrainian Canadians and others in Canada’s first national internment operations during WWI. She has prepared submissions to and appeared before Standing Committees of Parliament and the Ontario Legislature on various issues including Citizenship and Immigration (denaturalization and deportation) and Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness (Emergency Preparedness Act).
Alexandra chaired the Triennial Congress of Ukrainian Canadians in 2010, 2013, and 2016, and has been an election observer on Canadian bilateral missions to Ukraine for several elections.
Alexandra was co-counsel with Justice John Sopinka on the International Commission of Inquiry into the 1932-33 Famine in Ukraine, convened by the World Congress of (Free) Ukrainians in 1988, whose report was delivered to the United Nations.
First Vice-President Andrea Kopylech
Andrea Kopylech is 1st Vice-President of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress.
Andrea Kopylech is the Associate Director of Advancement with the Faculty of Arts at the University of Alberta.
She started her career as a communications professional, writer and editor in the magazine publishing industry, transitioning into fundraising. Andrea has honed her skills in grassroots efforts, supporting organizations both local and national in scope as a fundraising consultant, and has further specialized her skills in Major Gifts at St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation in Saskatoon, and the University Hospital Foundation in Edmonton. She is a graduate of the University of Alberta (BA), a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, and holds CFRE certification.
Currently Andrea volunteers on the UCC National Executive Board as 1st Vice President, Chair of the Fundraising Committee and remains an active past Chair of the Ukrainian Canadian Arts Network. She has served over 9 years with UCC National in several capacities, as well as having volunteered with UCC Saskatoon, UCC Saskatchewan Provincial Council, and UCC Alberta Provincial Council in the past.
Being an active part of her local community, she also sits on the Ukrainian Bilingual Parent Advisory Society board as Vice President, is a member of the Contemporary Ukrainian Studies Program Advisory Council with the Canadian Institute for Ukrainian Studies at the UofA, and is a member of the board with Nuit Blanche Edmonton. She is passionate about Arts, Culture & Heritage and building strong communities.
Andrea lives in Edmonton with her husband and 3 children.
Second Vice-President Alex Ilchenko, C.S.
Alex Ilchenko is 2nd Vice-President of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress. Alex is Senior Counsel at Pallett Valo LLP. He is President of the Ukrainian Canadian Bar Association. He joined the UCC Board of Directors in 2016.
Alex practices principally in the area of insolvency and related commercial litigation, with an emphasis on secured and unsecured creditor remedies to obtain recovery from both real and personal property, commercial bankruptcy, receiverships and commercial restructurings. Alex has represented individual and corporate debtors, secured and unsecured creditors, landlords, purchasers of assets from insolvent entities, liquidators, trustees in bankruptcy, construction lien claimants, directors of insolvent entities, receivers and monitors appointed under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act.
During the course of Alex’s litigation practice he has principally appeared before the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, Commercial List, and the Bankruptcy Registrar’s Court. He has also appeared before the Nova Scotia Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal for Ontario.
Chair, Bankruptcy and Insolvency Practice Group, The Advocates’ Society
Business Law Advisory Council, Panel on Reform of Fraudulent Conveyance and Avoidance Legislation – Government of Ontario
Member, Canadian Bar Association
Member, Ontario Bar Association Insolvency Subsection Executive
OBA representative and the Secretary of the Toronto Registrar’s Court Committee
OBA liaison to the Board of Directors of Ontario Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Professionals
Member, Turnaround Management Association
Member, American Bankruptcy Institute
Member, Peel Law Association
President, Ukrainian Canadian Bar Association
Honourary General Counsel, Last Post Fund
Director, Ukrainian Canadian Congress – National Board
Member, Officers Mess Committee, The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada
B.A., Carleton University (1988)
LL.B., University of Ottawa Law School (1991), Magna Cum Laude
Called to the Ontario Bar, 1993
Certified by the Law Society of Upper Canada as a Specialist in Bankruptcy and Insolvency Law, 2008