Lara Shohet is vice president and principal of The Dorchester Corporation, a private investment company focused in real estate and energy. Previously, Lara worked as a management consultant for McKinsey & Company. Lara graduated with a degree in public policy from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and received her MBA from the Harvard Business School. Lara is an active member of her community and she previously volunteered with the Ontario Trillium Foundation, assisting in the development of their strategic plan.
Antonella Ceddia is currently a litigation lawyer with the City of Toronto where she practises human rights defence on behalf of the City, Chief of Police, the Toronto Police Service and the Toronto Police Services Board. She also offers general policy advice on contentious human rights issues. Antonella practiced commercial litigation and medical negligence defence at McCarthy Tetrault LLP for six years before joining the City. She articled at the Court of Appeal for Ontario where she clerked for Justices Abella, Feldman, Moldaver and Austin. Before becoming a lawyer, Antonella had senior professional roles in both the public and private sectors in policy analysis/advice to government and human rights. With roles including Policy/Issues Analyst at Cabinet Office-Ontario; Policy Advisor at the Office of the Mayor-Toronto; Principal of her own human rights management-side consulting firm; Human Rights Investigator at the Ontario Human Rights Commissioner; and the first full-time Human Rights Investigator at a Canadian university, she continues to make major contributions to shaping the human rights landscape in Canada. Antonella holds an LL.B. from Queen’s University, an M.A. from the University of Waterloo, an Hons. B.A. from the University of Toronto and a Certificate in Advanced Alternative Dispute Resolution. She is a long-standing member of the Practice Advisory Committee to the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario and has served on the Executive of the Ontario Bar Association, Constitutional Civil Liberties and Human Rights Section. Antonella regularly lectures at conferences and universities across Ontario. For the past eight years, she has been a faculty member of the Intensive Course on Written Advocacy offered by Osgoode Professional Development. Antonella continues to play a leadership role in shaping Toronto civic life. Her life is one characterized by ‘involvement’. She now sits as a Director of WoodGreen Community Services, and has a long history serving as a Member of the Board of Directors of United Way Toronto where she was Chair of its Allocations Committee and Member, Governance Committee. She has also been Chair/President of various Boards including Community Resource Consultants of Toronto, Nightwood Theatre; and, the Canadian Association Against Sexual Harassment in Higher Education. She was an Executive Member of the Women’s Law Association of Ontario.
Derek Bailey is a Senior Manager Systems Engineering with Cisco Systems, and held a similar position prior to this at Alcatel-Lucent. An energetic and innovative professional with 25+ successful years of telecommunications experience gained through roles in business development, sales, sales engineering and management. Derek’s experience also includes international exposure in the Americas, Asia and Europe. In the past Derek also lectured at Centennial College and Ryerson University. Derek was educated in the United Kingdom where he gained a BSc Honors in Computer Science & Statistics from the University of Wolverhampton. Derek’s volunteer work includes Each One Teach One (Tropicana), Jamaica Canadian Association Saturday Tutorial program, 100 Strong Inc, Junior Achievement, motivational speaking in alternative schools, and coaching soccer.
Michael Conradi is an employment and human rights lawyer with more than a decade of experience advising private sector employers and acting as in-house counsel in the healthcare and financial services industries. Michael holds both a bachelor’s (honours) and a master’s degree in Sociology from Dalhousie University in Halifax, and is actively involved in coaching youth soccer. Michael became interested in volunteering with WoodGreen after seeing the innovative advertising campaign and its mission to provide opportunities to children, youth, seniors, parents and immigrants. He has lived in Europe three times and, while Toronto is home, he has also lived in Montreal, Ottawa, Calgary, and Halifax.
Vice-President of Legal at TD Bank Group since 2009, Rasha El Sissi has her law degree from Osgood Hall Law School and has experience with mergers and acquisitions.
She also has ties to McCarthy Trétault where she was an Associate in the Business Law Group and has honed her skills in corporate law and governance, regulatory affairs, legal compliance, and risk management.
Lisa Purdy is a Partner at Deloitte and she leads the Canadian National Health Services Practice. For over 20 years, Lisa has worked with individual providers, regional systems, and provincial health organizations and agencies in addressing their strategic, governance, operations, and technology solution requirements. Through her work within the health sector, Lisa has developed an understanding of health system issues, hospital operations, stakeholder perspectives, and overarching system governance, business, and technology management considerations.
Throughout her career, Lisa has been involved in numerous system design projects. She has led complex stakeholder engagements with physicians, clinicians, other practitioners, and administrators, and has been instrumental guiding organizations through complicated operational changes. She has worked with clients to evaluate alternative models and move forward with a preferred direction to improve both the efficiency and quality of services provided, as well as developed effective business case for the future state. Lisa also brings extensive experience working with clients to identify opportunities for operational efficiencies through integrated models and shared services.
Lisa contributes her leadership to various advisory boards, including Ivey Centre for Health Innovation and Leadership and the Conference Board of Canada’s Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care.
Akwatu Khenti is the Assistant Deputy Minister for Ontario’s Anti-Racism Directorate. He was formerly Director of the Office of Transformative Global Health at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). He is also an Assistant Professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto. Akwatu led the development of several of CAMH’s innovations, including the Substance Abuse Program for African Canadian and Caribbean Youth (SAPACCY), its Eli Lilly Learning Centre, and most recently, Transformative Global Health. His professional life includes frontline community development and leadership of the Jamaican Canadian Association (JCA), Ontario’s largest Black human services agency. Akwatu developed and managed a national joint initiative for the federal government and a coalition of Black community organizations, entitled Facilitating the Academic Success of Black Children in Canada. Akwatu has also been a researcher/writer for the North York Board of Education, developing curriculum infusion resources for grades 7 and 8; and a human rights co-ordinator with the Inter-Church Coalition on Africa, responsible for human rights reporting to United Nations mechanisms on several African countries. He is the recipient of several awards including the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal (2002), the Educational Excellence for Community Care Award (2007) from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto and the Harry Jerome Award for the Professional Excellence from Canada’s Black Business and Professional Association (2010).
Lauren is Principal at MDB Insight, which she helped launch, providing economic development consulting assistance to communities and organizations across Canada wrestling with the impact of a rapidly changing global economy and the challenges and opportunities this can create. Before working in the economic development field, Lauren worked in traditional urban planning roles, rising to the position of Vice-President in the series of corporate mergers that produced PricewaterhouseCoopers. In 2003, she helped spin PWC’s successful real estate advisory services practice into a new firm, urbanMetrics. She holds a Bachelor of Environmental Studies (Honours Planning) degree from the University of Waterloo and is both a Registered Professional Planner and a Member of the Canadian Institute of Planners. She has served for several years as Director on the Board of the Economic Developers Council of Ontario and in 2010 served as President of that organization. Lauren lives in the Beach neighbourhood.
Judy Pfeifer is a public affairs executive with over twenty years of communications, stakeholder relations and government experience. Judy is Vice President of Strategic Communications with Metrolinx. Previously she has held leadership roles with a leading PR agency; the Toronto Community Foundation as well as within the Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing and City of Toronto. She is a former Board member of Toronto Board of Trade, Environmental Defence and a founding member of the Emerging Leaders Network (CivicAction). A resident of Bloor West Village she spends too much time in hockey rinks.
Shelley C. Quinn is a lawyer with her own family law practice—Quinn Family Law. She obtained her LL.B. from Osgoode Hall Law School and recently completed her LL.M. in family law at Osgoode. Shelley articled with the Department of Justice Canada and was Crown Counsel with the federal Justice Department for 17 years. She received the Department of Justice’s national Humanitarian Excellence Award in 2013, for her community volunteer work in Toronto. Shelley is Vice President of the Women’s Law Association of Ontario, Past Chair of the Ontario Bar Association’s Women Lawyers Forum and on the executive of the Family Lawyer’s Association. She is a former Board Member of the Toronto Children’s Aid Society and Houselink Community Homes.
Sean Mullin is an economist, public policy wonk, consultant and think tank leader. Currently, Sean is the Executive Director of the Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship at Ryerson University, a new entity with a mandate to enhance the role of innovation and entrepreneurship within Canada.
Prior to joining the Brookfield Institute, Sean gained extensive experience in public policy, serving as Deputy Director of Policy in the Office of the Premier of Ontario and in senior advisory roles to Ontario’s Minister of Finance. Sean has also worked in the private equity industry and as an economic and business strategy consultant.
Sean has a degree in Economics and Computer Science from the University of Toronto, an M.A. in Economics from McGill and an MBA from the University of Oxford.
John Brodhead is Director of Policy and Strategy at Sidewalk Labs and is based in Toronto.
John comes to Sidewalk after a varied career in government and the not-for-profit sector, most recently serving as Chief of Staff to the Canadian Minister of Indigenous Services. He previously served as Chief of Staff to the Canadian Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, as Executive Director of Evergreen CityWorks, as Deputy Chief of Staff for the Premier of Ontario, and as a Vice President at Metrolinx.
Raphael Schapiro has worked as an executive at BMO Financial Group since 2010. His current role is as Head, North American Customer Contact Centre Transformation, where he is responsible for technology initiatives, voice of the customer, and change management, all in the service of building a leading customer experience.
Prior to this he held multiple roles in the Technology & Operations Group building his strategy, technology capital budgeting, project management, and risk management capabilities.
Prior to BMO, Raphael spent six years as a consultant with McKinsey & Company working with clients in multiple sectors on performance improvement and strategy. Raphael holds a D.Phil and M.Phil from the University of Oxford in Economic and Social History and a B.A. from McGill University.
Janice Winton recently retired from Ryerson University, where she held the position of Vice President, Administration and Finance from 2014 to 2018. She is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA), a Ryerson Business graduate, and holds a Master of Education (Higher Education) from the University of Toronto. Prior to becoming Vice President, Janice served Ryerson as Executive Director, Financial Services and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for over 24 years. Before joining Ryerson, Janice held a number of finance and accounting positions including Vice President, Finance at York Finch General Hospital. Raised in the Bahamas, Janice’s first career was as a registered nurse.