Speakers

Nathalie de RosiersNathalie des Rosiers

General Counsel, Canadian Civil Liberties Association

Nathalie Des Rosiers is the General Counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. Previously she was Dean of the Faculty of Law, Civil Law Section, of the University of Ottawa from 2004 to 2008 and President of the Law Commission of Canada from 2000 to 2004. In 2010, she was a nominee for The Globe and Mail’s Nation Builder Award. Nathalie obtained an LL.B. from Université de Montréal in 1981, an LL.M. from Harvard University in 1984, and an honorary doctorate from the Law Society of Upper Canada in 2004. She became a member of the Québec Bar in 1982 and of the Law Society of Upper Canada in 1987. From 1987 to 2000, she was a member of the University of Western Ontario’s Faculty of Law. She served as law clerk to Supreme Court of Canada Justice Julien Chouinard from 1982 to 1983 and then worked in private practice until 1987.She is the past President of the Canadian Federation of Social Sciences and Humanities, of the Canadian Council of Law Deans, of the Association des juristes d’expression française de l’Ontario (AJEFO), and the Canadian Association of Law Teachers. She was a member of the Environmental Appeal Board from 1988 to 2000 and a member of the Ontario Law Reform Commission from 1993 to 1996. She received the Médaille de l’Université Paris X in 2007, the Association of Professional Executives of the Public Service of Canada (APEX) Partnership Award in 2004, the Medal of the Law Society of Upper Canada in 1999, and the Order of Merit from AJEFO in 2000.


Mona EltahawyMona Eltahawy
Award-winning Columnist and International Public Speaker

Mona Eltahawy is an award-winning columnist and international public speaker on Arab and Muslim issues. Based in New York, she is a columnist for The Toronto Star, Israel’s The Jerusalem Report and Denmark’s Politiken. Her opinion pieces are also frequently published in The Washington Post and the International Herald Tribune. During the 18-day revolution that toppled Egypt’s President Hosni Mubarak, she appeared on most major media outlets, leading the feminist website Jezebel to describe her as “The Woman Explaining Egypt to the West.” Before moving to the U.S. in 2000, Ms Eltahawy was a news reporter for various media from Egypt, Israel, Palestine, Libya, Syria, Saudi Arabia and China. Ms. Eltahawy was the first Egyptian journalist to live and work for a western news agency in Israel. In 2010 the Anna Lindh Foundation awarded her its Special Prize for Outstanding Contribution to Journalism and the Estlow International Center for Journalism and New Media at the University of Denver gave her its Anvil of Freedom Award. In 2009, the European Union awarded her its Samir Kassir Prize for Freedom of the Press for her opinion writing and Search for Common Ground named her a winner of its Eliav-Sartawi Award for Middle Eastern Journalism. In addition to her journalism, Mona has taught as an adjunct at the New School in New York, the University of Oklahoma and the U.N.-mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica. Born in 1967 in Port Said, Egypt, she has lived in the U.K Saudi Arabia and Israel. She calls herself a proud liberal Muslim and in 2005 was named a Muslim Leader of Tomorrow by the American Society for Muslim Advancement. She is a member of the Communications Advisory Group for Musawah, the global movement for justice and equality in the Muslim family.


Ginger Gosnell-MyersGinger Gosnell-Myers
Project Manager and Public Engagement Director, Environics Urban Aboriginal Peoples Study

Ginger Gosnell-Myers – of Nisga’a and Kwakwak’awakw heritage is passionate about advancing Aboriginal rights and knowledge, while breaking down barriers between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people. Throughout 2008–2011, Ginger worked on the Environics Urban Aboriginal Peoples Study as both Project Manager and Public Engagement Director. The UAPS is Canada’s leading research on Aboriginal people’s values, aspirations, experiences, and identity in urban settings. Ginger is an Action Canada 2004 Fellow, former Co-Chair to the National Youth Council of the Assembly of First Nations, and is an Associate of the Centre for Dialogue with Simon Fraser University. Ginger is featured in the inspirational book, Notes from Canada’s Young Activists: A Generation Stands up for Change (2007). She is completing her Masters degree in Public Policy at Simon Fraser University, and continues to be active within Vancouver’s Aboriginal community.


Andrew HeintzmanAndrew Heintzman

Author of The New Entrepreneurs and President of INVESTECO

Andrew Heintzman is the president and co-founder of Investeco Capital Corp and the author of The New Entrepreneurs: Building a Green Economy for the Future. He is also Chair of the Premier’s Climate Change Advisory Panel for the Province of Ontario. Andrew sits on a number of corporate boards including Lotek Wireless, Triton Logging and Rowe Farms. Andrew was also the co-editor of Fueling the Future: How the Battle Over Energy is Changing Everything, Feeding the Future: From Fat to Famine, and Food and Fuel; Solutions for the Future published by the House of Anansi He is also a director of Tides Canada Foundation, a member of the Steering Committee of Sustainable Prosperity and on the Board of Advisors for the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto.


Jesse HirshJesse Hirsh

Internet strategist and broadcaster

Jesse Hirsh is an Internet strategist, researcher, and broadcaster based in Toronto, Ontario. He has a weekly nationally syndicated column on CBC radio explaining and analyzing the latest trends and developments in technology using language and examples that are meaningful and relevant to everyday life. He owns and operates two companies: Openflows Networks Ltd., which specializes in using free and open source software for advanced interactive platforms, and Metaviews Media Management Ltd., which focuses on research and consulting around new media business models. Jesse is also actively involved with MacLaren McCann, one of North America’s most successful multi-disciplinary advertising agencies, as a member of their Idea Council, which serves as a combination advisory board and think tank for the company. For two years, he was the host of an interfaith show on the Rogers and OMNI networks called 3D Dialogue. That show explored the world’s religions and spiritual paths through interviews with practitioners, gurus, holy people, and cynics regarding their rituals, scriptures, and beliefs (or lack thereof). Educated at the McLuhan Program at the University of Toronto, his passion is educating people on the potential benefits and perils of technology.


Marcel LauzièreMarcel Lauzière
President and CEO of Imagine Canada

Marcel Lauzière is the President and CEO of Imagine Canada, a national umbrella for charities and nonprofits in Canada. He has worked in the charitable and non-profit sector as well as in government here in Canada and abroad. Prior to this appointment to Imagine Canada, he served as Deputy Chief Executive of the Ministry of Social Development in the New Zealand government. He has also served as President of the Canadian Council on Social Development, as Special Advisor to the President of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and as Founding Executive Director of the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences. Throughout his career, Marcel has been a volunteer and has served on numerous boards and advisory committees in Canada and internationally including: the Statistics Canada Advisory Committee on Social Conditions; the Coalition of National Voluntary Organizations; the Canadian Center for Philanthropy; the International Council on Social Welfare; and the New Zealand Advisory Council on Official Statistics. He currently sits on the Editorial Board of The Philanthropist, the Accounting Standards Oversight Council (AcSOC), and the AGNA Steering Committee (CIVICUS). Marcel has a Masters degree in Canadian Social History from the University of Ottawa.


Kwame McKenzie

Kwame McKenzie
Director of the Canada Institutes of Health Research Social Aetiology of Mental Illness Training Centre, Senior Scientist of Social Equity and Health Research, and Deputy Director of the Schizophrenia Program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)

Dr. Kwame McKenzie is the Director of the Canada Institutes of Health Research Social Aetiology of Mental Illness Training Centre, Senior Scientist of Social Equity and Health Research, Deputy Director of the Schizophrenia Program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. He is also a Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto and sits on the Service System Advisory Committee of the Mental Health Commission of Canada. Dr. McKenzie has worked in the field for 20 years and has published over 100 articles and 4 books. His work spans basic science and applied policy research with experience in Europe, the Caribbean, U.K. and U.S. Key areas of interest include social determinants of health, society and mental health, social capital and mental health, redesigning mental health services for visible minority groups, efficacy of treatment in schizophrenia, psychiatric diagnosis, community engagement, racism, pathways to care, and suicide. He sat on an advisory group to the Secretary of State for Health Services of the British Government and was part of the team that drafted the current UK policy for improving mental health services for black and minority ethnic groups. Dr McKenzie is an International Editor of the British Journal of Psychiatry and the International Editor of the Journal of Ethnicity and Inequalities in Health and Social Care, a contributor to the Guardian newspaper. As a broadcaster he presented All in The Mind – a half hour program on BBC Radio 4. In June 2011, he was the recipient of the African Canadian Achievement Award for Excellence in Science.


Ovide Mercredi

Ovide Mercredi
Former National Chief for the Assembly of First Nations

Chief Mercredi was elected as National Chief for the Assembly of First Nations in 1991. During his first term he led the negotiations for the First Nations in the Charlottetown Accord. He was re-elected in 1994 and served as National Chief until 1997. He addressed the United Nations in Geneva and New York and led a human rights delegation of Canadians to the troubled Mexican state of Chiapas. In addition to serving as a lawyer and politician, he co-authored In the Rapids: Navigating the Future of First Nations with Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond in 1993 and contributes articles to other publications. In his spare time, he s paints and writes poetry. Chief Mercredi is an advocate of non-violent methods for change was nominated for the Gandhi Peace Prize. He has received honorary degrees from Bishops University, St. Mary’s University, the University of Lethbridge and Athabaska University. He is the first chancellor of the University of the North. He received the Order of Manitoba in 2005. In 2010, the Peace and Justice Studies Association awarded him their Social Courage award. He is the National Spokesperson for Treaties 1 to 11, having been chosen in a traditional and customary manner in the summer of 2006. As National Chief, he worked closely with Elders from all regions of Canada. As a Treaty Spokesperson, he has continued his practice of seeking the advice and support of traditional Elders. Chief Mercredi has always maintained that his people possess the answers to their needs and aspirations.


Dave MeslinDave Meslin 
Artist, Writer, Organizer

Dave Meslin is a Toronto-based artist, consultant, trainer, writer and organizer. His work focuses on civic engagement and building multi-partisan projects that encourage more people to get involved with local politics. He has collaborated with partners across the political spectrum, including Jack Layton, Judy Rebick, Guy Giornio, Glen Murray, and Josh Matlow. Dave has worked as an Executive Assistant at both the Ontario Legislature at Queen’s Park and Toronto’s City Hall. He works mostly outside the political system, including six months he spent in Argentina making a documentary film with Avi Lewis and Naomi Klein. Dave has instigated a handful of projects and initiatives, including the Toronto Public Space Committee (’01), Spacing magazine (’03), Who Runs This Town project (’06), City Idol (’06), the Toronto Cyclists Union (’08), Dandyhorse magazine (’08), Better Ballots (’08), WindFest (’10) and the Ranked Ballot Initiative (’11). Dave is the co-editor of Local Motion: The Art of Civic Engagement in Toronto, which was published in November 2010 by Coach House Press, the final book in their “uTOpia” series. He embraces ideas and projects that cut across traditional boundaries between grassroots politics, electoral politics and the arts community. In his work, he attempts to weave these elements together. His 2010 TED talk, “The Antidote to Apathy,” explores cultural barriers that discourage community engagement and proposes a path forward.


Jayaseelan NaidooJayaseelan Naidoo – Opening Keynote Speaker

Chair, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition and Co-founder, J&J Group

Jay Naidoo is Chair of the Board of Directors and Chair of the Partnership Council of the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN). He is also the co-founder of the social development arm of an investment and management company, J&J Group. He serves in an advisory capacity for a number of organizations including the Global Health Advisory Panel of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and was recently appointed to the Broadband Commission of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). From 1994 to 1999, Jay was the Minister responsible for South Africa’s Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) and Communications Minister in Nelson Mandela’s Cabinet. He was the founding General Secretary of the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) where he served three terms (1985 to 1993) and from 2001–2010 was Chairperson of the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA). Jay was the recipient of the Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur (Legion of Honour), one of France’s highest decorations, and received the Drivers for Change Award from the Southern African Trust and Mail & Guardian newspaper in October 2010. He has recently returned to full-time voluntary work, and publishes a blog at www.thejustcause.org. In 2010 he published his autobiography, Fighting for Justice.


Naheed Nenshi Naheed Nenshi – Closing Keynote Speaker

Mayor of Calgary

Naheed Nenshi was sworn in as Calgary’s 36th mayor in October 25, 2010. Prior to his election, Naheed spent many years at the international consulting firm, McKinsey & Co., where he advised large telecommunications, banking, retail and oil and gas companies in corporate strategy. After leaving McKinsey, Naheed formed his own business, the Ascend Group, a consultancy that assists public, private, and non-profit organizations to grow. He designed major policy for the Alberta government, helped create a Canadian strategy for The Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, and worked with the United Nations to determine how global business can help the poorest people on the planet. Naheed was Canada’s first tenured professor in the field of non-profit management, at Mount Royal University’s Bissett School of Business. His real passion is making cities, especially Calgary work better. He is the lead author of Building Up: Making Canada’s Cities Engines of Growth and Magnets of Development and has long been putting his ideas to work in Calgary. He was Chairman of EPCOR CENTRE for the Performing Arts, and has lent his expertise to non-profits across the city, including the Calgary Foundation, the United Way, the Coral Springs Community Association, and Brown Bagging for Calgary Kids. He has also served on the leadership team of imagineCalgary, where he was a primary author of Calgary’s 100-year vision, and is co-founder of the Better Calgary Campaign and Civic Camp. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree (with distinction) from the University of Calgary where he was President of the Student’s Union, and a Master in Public Policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, where he studied as a Kennedy Fellow.


Tom OrmsbyTom Ormsby

Director of External & Corporate Affairs, De Beers Canada

With more than 25 years experience in media, communications, marketing, community relations, government and management, Tom Ormsby joined De Beers Canada in 2006 as the Public & Corporate Affairs Manager for the Victor Project, which moved into operations in January 2008 to become Ontario’s first diamond mine. Based in Timmins, Ontario, Tom’s role and responsibilities included internal and external communications, media and public relations, community stakeholder development and government affairs, while providing strategic communications support to all departments. In June 2009, Tom relocated to the corporate office in Toronto to assume the role of Director of External & Corporate Affairs for De Beers Canada, while also maintaining his External & Corporate Affairs responsibilities for the Victor Mine. In addition to External and Corporate Affairs, Tom oversees Information Services for De Beers Canada and is active in a number of provincial and national mining and public relations industry associations.


Hon. Jim Prentice P.C., Q.C.Hon. Jim Prentice P.C., Q.C.
Senior Executive Vice-President and Vice Chairman, CIBC

The Honourable Jim Prentice joined CIBC as Senior Executive Vice-President and Vice Chairman in January 2011 after a distinguished political career. Mr. Prentice was elected to the House of Commons as the Member of Parliament for Calgary Centre North in 2004 and re-elected in 2006 and 2008. From January 2006 until November 2010 he was one of the most senior Ministers in the Canadian Government, serving variously as the Minister of Industry, the Minister of the Environment and the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development. Described by Prime Minister Stephen Harper as the Chief Operating Officer of the Government of Canada, Mr. Prentice chaired the Operations Committee of Cabinet, and sat on the Priorities and Planning Committee from 2006 through November 2010.  Before entering politics, Mr. Prentice practiced law in Calgary, specializing in commercial law and property rights. He served as the Co-Chair of the Indian Claims Commission of Canada from 1993 until 2000. He graduated from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Commerce in 1977 and then entered Dalhousie Law School as a Dunn Scholar, graduating with his Bachelor of Laws in 1980. Mr. Prentice was designated a Queen’s Counsel in 1992.


Paul Quassa

Paul Quassa 
Mayor of Igloolik, Former Chief Negotiator, Nunavut Land Claims Agreement, Broadcaster

Paul Quassa was the Inuit Chief Negotiator of the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement finalized in 1994 and was elected the first president of Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. when the NCLA was ratified. In the 1980’s he was Senior Producer for Inuit Broadcasting Corporation and reporter-announcer at CBC North. As one Nunavut’s most prominent residential school survivors, Quassa has been an outspoken leader in the reconciliation process leading to Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Quassa has been a Board member on several key NCLA management agencies, currently serving on the Nunavut Planning Commission. He is the Vice Chair of the Nunavut Implementation Training Committee (NITC) and he was recently elected Mayor of Igloolik for the third time. As Igloolik’s Mayor, he has been the overall public spokesman in Nunavut for the urgency of Digital Indigenous Democracy’s Baffin Environmental Assessment Community Engagement Network (BEACEN). His collaborators on this initiative include Zacharias Kunuk and Norm Cohn of ISUMA Productions, Canada’s first Inuit owned media production company, which produced Atanarjuat The Fast Runner, winner of the Camera d'or at Cannes in 2001. They are shaping the media component represented by Digital Indigenous Democracy and BEACEN InteractiveTV.


Rafal RohozinskiRafal Rohozinski
Founder and CEO of the SecDev Group and Psiphon inc

Rafal Rohozinski is one of Canada’s thought leaders in the field of cyber security and Internet freedom. He is the founder and CEO of the SecDev Group and Psiphon inc. His work spans two decades and 37 countries including conflict zones in the CIS, the Middle East, and Africa. In 2010 Rafal was named by SC magazine as one of the top five IT security luminaries of the year; and “a person to watch” by the Canadian media. He is known for his work on cyber espionage, including co-authorship of the Tracking GhostNet, and Shadows in the Cloud and Kookface studies examining Chinese cyber espionage networks and global cyber-crime. Rafal is a senior scholar at the Canada Center for Global Security Studies, Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto, and previously served as director of the Advanced Network Research Group, Cambridge Security Program, University of Cambridge. He is a senior research advisor to the Citizen Lab, and together with Ronald Deibert, a founder and principal investigator of the Information Warfare Monitor and the Open Net Initiative. The author of numerous academic and policy papers including, “Stuxnet and the Future of Cyberwar “ (Survival, IISS, 2011), “Liberation vs. Control: The Future of Cyberspace (Journal of Democracy, 2010), he is also a lead editor and contributor to Access Controlled: The Shaping of Power, Rights, and Rule in Cyberspace (MIT 2010) and Access Contested: Security, Identity, and Resistance in Asian Cyberspace (MIT, 2011). McClelland and Stewart will publish his forthcoming book co-authored with Ron Deibert, Ghost in the Machine: The Battle for the Future of Cyberspace, in 2012.


Albina Ruiz Rios

Albina Ruiz Rios
Social Entrepreneur,  Founding President & Executive Director, Ciudad Saludable Group, Peru

Albina Ruiz Rios is an industrial engineer and the Founder and Executive Director of Ciudad Saludable in Peru. While a student, she focused on the health and environmental problems caused by garbage waste in Peru, in particular amongst the endemic poor. After writing her thesis, she developed and founded a new integrated community-managed system of waste collection that she hoped would serve as a model for urban and rural communities around Peru. The system has been so successful, that it has spread to over 20 cities across Peru, servicing over 3 million residents and is now being emulated across the developing world. After 15 years of promoting her concept while working as a consultant to cities, industrial firms and various international development projects, Albina founded Ciudad Saludable in 2001. She became a Fellow of Social Entrepreneurs at Ashoka in 1996, was selected by the Schwab Foundation as one of the world’s Social Entrepreneur Leaders, and is also an AVINA Leader. Her life and groundbreaking work has been profiled on the PBS documentary series The New Heroes.


Dave ToycenDave Toycen
President and CEO of World Vision Canada

As President and CEO of World Vision Canada, Dave Toycen heads Canada’s largest humanitarian relief, development and advocacy agency. Prior to his appointment as president in 1996, Toycen was World Vision Canada’s executive vice-president, and vice-president of donor development for eight years. The number of children sponsored through World Vision Canada in those years has also risen to more than 500,000. He has led World Vision Canada into significant justice and advocacy work, in areas such as child and maternal health, the rights of girls, and the protection of children in armed conflict. Toycen’s career with World Vision internationally has spanned more than 35 years. He has provided on-site assessment and support during many large-scale humanitarian disasters in the past 20 years and established World Vision communications offices in more than 20 developing countries. His influence helped pioneer World Vision’s move into television fundraising in Canada, Australia and the United States. His book The Power of Generosity (Harper Collins, 2004) draws from his wide experience and calls readers to become more engaged in the world and to develop a more generous way of life. Toycen holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Lawrence University in Wisconsin, a Master of Divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary in California, and honorary doctorates from Tyndale University College and Seminary in Toronto, the Church Divinity School of the Pacific in Berkeley, California and Wycliffe College, University of Toronto. He is a member of the Order of Ontario.


Frances Westley

Frances Westley
J.W. McConnell Chair in Social Innovation & Director for the Waterloo Institute on Social Innovation and Resilience, University of Waterloo

Frances Westley currently holds the J.W. McConnell Chair in Social Innovation and is the Director for the Waterloo Institute on Social Innovation and Resilience at the University of Waterloo. She is a renowned scholar and consultant in the areas of social innovation, strategies for sustainable development, strategic change, visionary leadership and inter-organizational collaboration. Dr. Westley serves on numerous advisory boards including the Resilience Alliance Board of Science, World Conservation Union-Conservation Breeding Specialist Group, the Stockholm Resilience Center, the SARAS Institute and Evergreen Canada. She is on the editorial board of several journals, including Journal of Applied Behavioral Science and Ecology and Society. She is the recipient of several awards including the Ulysses S. Seal award for innovation in conservation and the Corporate Knights Award. Frances Westley received her Ph.D. in Sociology from McGill University (1978), her M.A. Sociology from McGill University (1975), and her B.A. in English Literature from Middlebury College (1970).

2016 Summer Conference

The Canada Project

Identity, Citizenship, and Nationhood in a Changing World

August 5-7, 2016
The YMCA Geneva Park Conference Centre, Orillia, ON

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Couchiching Connects
April 2017
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