Supporting Social Innovation & Wellbeing
Creativity, Dignity, Equality & Integrity
Founding Member and Chair
Peter is a founding member of the Somerset Foundation and has been its Chair since its inception in 2001. Through Somerset, he engages with social purpose organizations where his input and interest relates primarily to organizational governance, structure, strategic policy development and financial sustainability issues. He is a member of the global Ashoka Support Network and is actively engaged with Ashoka and several Ashoka Fellows.
In the late 1980’s, Peter pursued basic securities training through the Canadian Securities Institute. Since then, he has been involved in private businesses, financial ventures and more recently social enterprises.
He spent twenty five years training, practicing and teaching as a medical doctor. Following a medical degree at the University of British Columbia and a multi-year Internship in New Zealand, he became a specialist in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. He has experience working in both the public and private health care sectors. In 2008, he relinquished his Clinical Assistant Professorship with the Department of Medicine at U.B.C. and retired completely from his medical practice.
He is a keen photographer, and loves music and travelling. With his wife Nancy (below), he has offered a practice in Mindfulness & Intimacy through their co-creation – Mortifee Training. They live in Vancouver and Naramata B.C. and between them they have four wonderful daughters.
Ann Mortifee, CM
Founding Member and Director
Ann is a founding member of the Somerset Foundation and has been a Director since its inception in 2001. She is an internationally known singer, composer, playwright and author. Over the years, audiences have been moved by her many performances, CDs, musicals and one woman shows.
As a keynote speaker, she has addressed conferences on the topics of health, ecology, creativity, women’s issues, and the arts. She has served as the Chair of the BC Arts Council and worked with several charitable organizations to further the vision of a healthy world.
As the founding President of Eco Initiatives Inc. she co-created the first Living Forest Community of Everwoods on Cortes Island, B.C. She is the Chair and co-founder of The Trust for Sustainable Forestry, an organization dedicated to transforming the culture from industrial logging practices to ecosystem based management.
Ann has been honoured with the Order of Canada, and the YWCA Woman of Distinction Award, for her outstanding work in the performing and healing arts in Canada and internationally. www.annmortifee.com
Nancy Mortifee (nee Fischer)
Nancy brings to the Somerset Foundation extensive experience in the citizen sector. She was the founding Executive Director of Goldie Hawn’s Bright Light Foundation, both in Canada and the United States. Drawing on her 20-plus years of experience as an early childhood educator, she designed the research-based Mindfulness Education (ME) program that is now used in many schools across North America. Nancy co-authored the book “Mind Power for Children – a Guide for Parents and Teachers” now translated into five languages.
Realizing her passion for intercultural and inter-spiritual music and art, Nancy co-founded the West-coast Sacred Arts Society and as Executive Director produced Canada’s first Sacred World Music Festival for five years. In partnership with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, she co-produced the highly celebrated musical tribute, honouring His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama’s visit to Vancouver.
Presently, Nancy serves as Dean for the Wellbeing Project, a co-creation of Ashoka, the Esalen Institute, the Fetzer Institute and Synergos, designed to support the inner wellness of seasoned social entrepreneurs around the world. She also has a practice in Mindfulness & Intimacy, focusing on women’s group work and is the current Chair of the Seva Canada Society, whose mission is to restore sight and prevent blindness in the developing world. www.mortifeetraining.com
Paul Horn – in memoriam
Honorary Senior Advisor
Paul passed away with peace and grace on the morning of June 29th, 2014 after a brief illness. His contribution to the Somerset Foundation came from his grounded wisdom and the perspective that emerges from a life characterized by integrity and daring. He will be deeply missed.
His illustrious musical career spanned five decades, fifty albums and five Grammy nominations. He shared his musical gifts with thousands, both as a solo artist and with the likes of Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Tony Bennett, Buddy Rich, Chick Corea, Quincy Jones and Ravi Shankar. He is known as the Father of New Age Music for his seminal album, ‘Inside the Taj Mahal’.
A pioneer in the Transcendental Mediation (TM) movement, he was among the first teachers in North America. He recently performed along side Paul McCartney, Donovan and others in support of the David Lynch Foundation and their TM program for schools.
Paul offered his golden flute in support of social causes in conferences, at universities & schools and in film documentaries around the world. His interests included the advancement of mindfulness, ecological conservation, cultural exchange, animal rights and social justice. www.paulhornmusic.com
The Paul Horn Fund:
In memory of Paul, the Somerset Foundation has created the Paul Horn Fund which will support and promote causes about which he was passionate. Donations of cheques payable to the Somerset Foundation (Memo line: Paul Horn Fund) would be gratefully accepted. In addition, secure online donations may be made by clicking the ‘Donate Now’ button below (through which you will immediately receive a tax receipt from Canada Helps).