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Dr. Manfred Fischedick - Our Day One Evening Keynote Speaker

As the Vice President at the Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy and a professor at the Schumpeter School of Business and Economics at the University of Wuppertal, Dr. Fischedick's work and research provides resources for pathways to effective renewable energy/clean tech policy and sustainable economic development in Canada as ways of addressing climate change.

Drawing on his expertise as the lead author of a chapter on “Industry” with the 2014 UN International Panel on Climate Change Report, Dr Fischedick brings his expertise and experience to our current discussions in Canada about climate change and transitioning to a robust renewable energy economy.

Through his work with the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) commissioned by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Dr. Fischedick can offer resources for decarbonization pathways and effective policy in Canada to move to a renewable energy economy as well as meet its UN COP 21 climate change commitments.

As the Director of the Future Energy and Mobility Structures Division in the Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy and an adviser to the governments and the business sector, Dr Fischedick brings invaluable breadth to current discussions of renewable electricity, clean infrastructure and buildings, and sustainable transportation across Canada.

Fischedick, M. et al., (2014). Industry. In Climate Change 2014: Mitigation of Climate Change. Contribution of Working Group III to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Edenhofer, O., R. Pichs-Madruga, Y. Sokona, E. (Eds.)]. Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA: Cambridge University Press.

Hillebrandt, K., Samadi S., Fischedick, M. (2015). Pathways to deep decarbonization in Germany. Paris: Sustainable Development Solutions Network.

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Tzeporah Berman BA, MES, LLD - Our Day Two Evening Keynote Speaker

Tzeporah Berman is a Canadian environmental activist and writer, and has 20 years of experience designing environmental campaigns in Canada and internationally. She is known for her role as the blockade coordinator for largest civil disobedience in Canada’s history in Clayoquot Sound in 1993.  She currently works as a strategic advisor to a number of First Nations, environmental organizations and philanthropic foundations on climate and energy issues, including the oil sands and pipelines. 

This year she was appointed by the Alberta Government to Co-Chair the Oilsands Advisory Working Group tasked with making recommendations to implement climate change and cumulative impact policies. Last year she was appointed to the BC Government Climate Leadership Team tasked with making policy recommendations to meet BC legislated climate targets. 

Tzeporah is an Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University, the former Co-Director of Greenpeace International's Climate Program and Co-founder of ForestEthics.

Her book This Crazy Time: Living Our Environmental Challenge was published by Knopf Canada in 2011. Berman was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in 2013 by the University of British Columbia. 

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Marlo Raynolds, Our Day One Afternoon Keynote Speaker

Dr. Marlo Raynolds is currently serving as the Chief of Staff to Canada’s Federal Minister of the Environment and Climate Change. 

Marlo was the Executive Director (2003-2010) of The Pembina Institute, a non-profit environmental think-tank focused on energy and environment issues. 

In 2008, Marlo was chosen from 1,100 nominees by an independent board of 25 business leaders from across Canada as one of Canada's Top 40 Under 40 leaders.

Marlo has worked with a wide range of public and private sector clients and stakeholders including many of the large Canadian energy companies, provincial/territorial governments and environmental NGOs. 

Dr. Raynolds holds a PhD in Mechanical Engineering (University of Alberta), a B.Sc. in Systems Design Engineering (University of Waterloo), and a Masters in Management and Leadership in the Non-profit Sector (McGill University). 

Marlo, his wife Anya, and their two children have recently moved to Ottawa from the Bow Valley, west of Calgary.

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Catherine Abreu

Catherine is one of Canada’s foremost sustainable energy campaigners. As the Executive Director of Climate Action Network - Réseau action climat Canada, she advances policies that work to ensure Canada contributes its fair share to preventing the worst impacts of climate change. She is the former Energy Campaign Coordinator of the Ecology Action Centre.

Catherine is committed to work that confronts climate change head-on, wielding bold and creative strategies. She is a dedicated collaborator, having founded six community-based coalitions working in climate action and the arts. She thinks a lot about citizenship, community, and beauty, and does her best to incorporate these values into each of her endeavours.

CAN-Rac brings environmental NGOs together with trade unions, First Nations, social justice, health and youth organizations, faith groups and local, grassroots initiatives. CAN-Rac provides a space where, side-by-side, Canadians who care about climate change can establish common goals and, in speaking with a unified voice, ensure federal-provincial climate ambition at the scale science requires.

Anjali Appadurai

Long-time activist and communicator, Anjali brings her passion for climate justice to West Coast Environmental Law, where she is busy building a BC-wide conversation around fossil fuel accountability and responsibility for climate change costs. Anjali has also worked internationally with social movements, governments and organizations from around the world to bring a climate justice perspective to the UN Climate Convention. She is a strong believer in the power of social movements to effect change, and holds hope for our collective movements to create a just and equitable transition to a carbon-free world.

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Janice Ashworth

Janice Ashworth is the General Manager of the Ottawa Renewable Energy Coop. She has work with OREC since 2011 and has been working in renewable energy for a decade. She co-ordinated the Nova Scotia Sustainable Electricity Alliance and worked in wind power with the community-owned Colchester-Cumberland Windfield. Her non-profit experience includes community organizing for Ecology Ottawa and promoting solar energy with the Ecology Action Centre. Janice has a Master’s in Environmental Studies from Dalhousie University with a focus on community power structures and policies. Janice sits on the Sustainability Committee of the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce and the Board of the Ontario Federation of Community Power Co-operatives.

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Amin Asadollahi

Amin Asadollahi is the North American lead for climate mitigation at the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) , a Canada-based international think-tank.‎ Prior to joining IISD, he held various senior advisory position in the federal government and was Pembina Institute's oilsands director. 

Amin has a wealth of knowledge and experience in sustainable resource development, clean energy and trade policy, and has provided advice to governments, energy sector clients and non-governmental organizations. He has worked on energy and environmental policies, and has facilitated multistakeholder and cross-jurisdictional discussions.

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Diane Beckett

Diane Beckett has more than three decades of experience addressing the human and environmental dimensions of sustainability, including extensive experience working with environmental organizations at the community, provincial and national level in Canada, as well as internationally. Her work focuses on climate and environmental justice, low-carbon and non-nuclear energy futures, urban environments, wilderness protection, food and agro-ecology, natural resources management, gender equality,  traditional knowledge and addressing nature deficit disorder.

She has a broad range of experience in research, policy, planning, management and advocacy for civil society organizations, governments, associations, universities, and the United Nations. She has designed and implemented policies and programs, provided strategic advice, supported capacity-building and organizational change, and developed and implemented initiatives to influence policy and increase public and professional awareness for more than three dozen organizations in many parts of Canada, and in almost a dozen countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Her most recent major assignment was Interim Executive Director of Sierra Club Canada Foundation in 2015-2016.

A passion for the environment runs deeply through Diane's personal life as well as her professional career. She loves farmers’ markets, urban cycling and being in nature. She cross-country skies until the last smidgen of snow has disappeared in the Gatineau Hills near her Ottawa home. She has canoed the Nahanni, and trekked in the Nepalese Himalayas and the Thai rainforest.

Diane has a Bachelor of Environmental Studies from the University of Waterloo and a Master of Arts in International Affairs from Carleton University.

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Mitchell Beer

Mitchell Beer is President of Ottawa-based Smarter Shift and curator of The Energy Mix , a free, thrice-weekly e-digest and online archive on energy, climate, and low-carbon solutions.

Much of his work focuses on climate and energy communications and analysis, supporting policy and program changes that will speed up the shift to a post-carbon economy and deliver the benefits back to communities and businesses. He’s most interested in discovering how “unusual suspects” outside the energy sector can gain by increasing their energy efficiency and cutting their carbon footprint—even if carbon is only their second-best reason to take action.

Beer traces his work as a renewable energy/energy efficiency communicator to October 1977, when he began a 3½-year assignment as a reporter, Parliamentary correspondent, and eventually assistant editor at Canadian Renewable Energy News. He attended the 2015 United Nations climate summit in Paris as an accredited observer.

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John Bennett

John Bennett is now a Senior Policy Adviser with Friends of the Earth Canada where he is pursuing his campaign to save the bees he launched as the National Program Director of Sierra Club Canada Foundation. He has long history of campaigning on energy and environmental issues dating back to the 1970s when he co-founded the first Greenpeace office east of the Rockies and launched GP’s first nuclear power campaign.

John is a well known and outspoken activist oft quoted in the media. His long career includes stops at Greenpeace, Climate Action Network and He created a media sensation by leading a trio of Greenpeace activists who canoed into the Bruce Nuclear Power Plant to prove it lacked security.

Mr. Bennett orchestratedthe Sierra Club’s campaign to force car manufacturers to produce less polluting vehicles. The end of the decade saw him back at Greenpeace leading the atmosphere and energy campaigns in Canada and the Oil Campaign for Greenpeace International. During this period he organized the first Greenpeace actions on Climate Change. He issued the first CO2 Infraction notices to car drivers in Toronto, Vancouver, Regina and Ottawa and edited the North American Edition of the “Environmental Impact of the Car”, “The Greenpeace Energy Book” and “Transit in Canada.”

For the last tenyears he has been based in Ottawa working on climate change as well as air pollution, energy policy, renewables and the nuclear power. 

Annie Bérubé

Annie Bérubé is Director of Government Relations for Équiterre in Ottawa. Équiterre’s mission is to build a social movement by encouraging individuals, organizations and governments to make ecological and equitable choices, in a spirit of solidarity. 

Previously, Annie managed a coalition of national environmental organizations campaigning for fiscal and budgetary reform at the federal level in Canada. She also occupied the position of research manager at an environmental economics research think tank at the University of Ottawa. Annie spent over ten years as senior policy advisor at Environment Canada and Health Canada working on pesticides and toxic substances management particularly with regards to protecting the health of vulnerable populations. She has also worked as an environmental auditor in the Office of the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development, and on Parliament Hill. 

Annie holds a post-graduate diploma in Environmental Health from McMaster University, a Master of Environmental Studies at York University and a B.A. in economics from McGill University.

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Sabrina Bowman

Sabrina is the Outreach Director at GreenPAC, a new organization working to build environmental leadership in politics. Previously, she spent three years at Environmental Defence, having the privilege of working with fun, quirky, brilliant and dedicated people across Ontario working to stop tar sands pipelines in the province.

Sabrina was trained by organizing guru and Harvard professor Marshall Ganz. She has given several trainings on engagement organizing and is currently a facilitator with the newly-launched Institute for Change Leaders at Ryerson University, under the direction of Olivia Chow. 

Outside of this, Sabrina helps various organizations with fundraising strategizing, volunteers at her local do-it-yourself bike shop, and goes on occasion to adult swing dance camp.

Sabrina feels all her organizing, activist, fundraising and campaigner friends and mentors are superheroes.

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Karen Campbell

Karen has practiced environment and natural resource law for more than 20 years, with a focus on climate, energy, mining and environmental assessment law. She obtained her JD from Dalhousie University. 

After obtaining her LL.M. International Environmental Law from the University of London, Karen moved to Vancouver where she worked at West Coast Environmental Law and the Pembina Institute. At both organizations, Karen conducted law reform and advocacy efforts in relation to land and community impacts from oil and gas developments, oil pipeline projects, federal and provincial environmental assessment, mining and contaminated sites legislation. She has advocated at the provincial, federal and international level for stronger laws and policies to regulate resource industries.

Karen joined Ecojustice in 2011, where she has applied her expertise to climate change and energy litigation and advocacy efforts. She leads Ecojustice’s Climate Change and Energy Team, responsible for Ecojustice’s program to hold governments to account for meaningful action on climate change. Her case work includes regulatory reviews and litigation related to the Enbridge Northern Gateway and Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain oil sands pipelines, and a challenge to a thermal coal export facility on BC’s Fraser River. 

Clare Demerse

Clare manages Clean Energy Canada's policy engagement on federal and national issues, focusing on renewable energy, climate policy and sustainable transportation. Before joining Clean Energy Canada, Clare worked on federal climate policy with the Pembina Institute, was a Gordon Foundation Global Fellow and is a current fellow of the Broadbent Institute. Clare holds a master’s degree in journalism from Carleton University. She is based in Ottawa.

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Audrey Dépault

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Mike De Souza

Mike De Souza is National Observer's Ottawa-based Managing Editor. He has covered politics for more than a decade, focusing in recent years on energy and environment policies in government and industry. A Montreal native, Mike has worked as a broadcast and print journalist in his home town, as well as the National Assembly in Quebec City, Parliament Hill in Ottawa and Calgary. He has worked for Postmedia, The Montreal Gazette and CJAD Radio.

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Pegi Dover

Erin Flanagan

Erin Flanagan is the director of the Pembina Institute's federal policy program. She researches and advocates for policies that reduce the environmental impacts of fossil fuel and related infrastructure projects, and that support Canada's transition to clean energy. As a technical analyst at the Institute, Erin contributed to public- and private-sector projects on a range of issues in the oilsands, including greenhouse gas and water management, land-use planning, tailings treatment and reclamation. Her analysis has appeared in outlets such as the Globe and Mail, the Financial Post and the New York Times. As a frequent spokesperson for the Institute, she appears regularly on CBC, Global and CTV news and current affairs television programs.

Erin holds a Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering with a minor in public policy from the University of New Brunswick. Her contributions to technical and humanitarian issues have been highlighted by organizations including the Canadian Engineering Memorial Foundation, the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of New Brunswick and the Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering.

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Wayne Groszko

Wayne Groszko develops sustainable transportation and renewable energy projects with the Ecology Action Centre in Halifax. He created the first comprehensive map of public transit services across the province of Nova Scotia, and is the founder of Go Maritimes, a collaborative platform to improve access to public transportation information across Canada's Maritime provinces. His primary research and development interest is around how we can share the resources we need to live more happily, affordably and sustainably. He has spoken on sustainability in forums from Calgary to Halifax, and on CBC, Radio Canada, and Global TV.

A bicycling aficionado, Wayne has traveled on bicycles, trains, and buses all around North America for work and fun, including having bicycled across Canada twice.

Wayne holds a doctorate from Dalhousie University, and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Calgary, and has taught at Dalhousie University and the Nova Scotia Community College.

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Joe Gunn

Joe Gunn is the Executive Director of Citizens for Public Justice (CPJ), a member-driven, faith-based public policy organization in Ottawa focused on ecological justice, refugee rights and poverty elimination. 

The call to do justice is described by Joe as his life’s “vocation.” Joe grew up in Toronto, where he received his BA in Political Science, followed by an MA from the University of Regina. For seven years, Joe worked in Latin American refugee camps and served as a Country Director for Canadian Save the Children in Nicaragua. For over ten years, he worked with the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, where he developed policy and coordinated work in areas of social justice, missions, and Aboriginal peoples. He served as the founding vice-chair of KAIROS-Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives, and has been active in the Canadian Council of Churches’ Commission for Justice and Peace. He coordinated the Make Poverty History campaign, and engaged in research, public speaking and advocacy on national and international issues.

After engaging Canadian faith communities in speaking out on climate justice, in 2012 Joe was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for "exemplary service and commitment to the betterment of the community."

In June 2013, Joe was awarded a "Certificate of Honour" from Development and Peace for "commitment to the cause of social justice and efforts to improve living conditions for the poorest of the poor in the Global South."

He has served as Executive Director at CPJ since August 2008.

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Stephen Hazell

Stephen Hazell is director of conservation and general counsel with Nature Canada and adjunct professor of environmental law at University of Ottawa.  Stephen’s experience is unique in that he has held senior management positions in four national environmental organizations, a federal government agency, and a leading Ottawa-based consulting firm. Stephen also served as legal counsel to these organizations. Stephen served as executive director of Sierra Club Canada where he launched campaigns to achieve a “time-out” in approvals of new oil sands projects and ensure that Canada meets its international climate change obligations. Stephen co-chaired a joint industry-environmental group initiative that successfully brought provincial and federal governments together to produce a Canada-wide regulatory framework to reduce smog emissions. He also led a successful campaign to ensure that the $16 billion Mackenzie Gas Project is not built until it is demonstrably sustainable.

In other leadership roles with the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Canadian Arctic Resources Committee and Canadian Wildlife Federation, he initiated successful campaigns to expand Nahanni National Park Reserve, and create the Mealy Mountains National Park and Lake Superior National Marine Conservation Area. He led successful interventions against environmentally harmful development projects, including the Great Whale hydroelectric project in northern Quebec, the Kiggavik uranium mine near Baker Lake Northwest Territories, and the White’s Point basalt quarry and marine terminal near Digby Nova Scotia.

He initiated pivotal, precedent-setting law suits against the proposed Rafferty-Alameda dams in southern Saskatchewan and the proposed Cheviot open-pit coal mine near Jasper Alberta. In the mid-1990s, Stephen led the team at the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency that developed the regulations for the implementation of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act.

In the late 1980s, he led a coalition of 40 Canadian environmental and indigenous organizations that developed Greenprint for Canada, a comprehensive set of environmental policy and program recommendations which directly led to the Mulroney government’s $3 billion Green Plan. He initiated a similar initiative Tomorrow Today, launched by eleven national environmental groups in 2008.

In his consulting career, Stephen has been engaged to work on a host of environmental management projects with various Canadian federal, provincial and territorial departments, as well as the governments of Jamaica, Zimbabwe, Slovakia and Costa Rica.

Stephen holds a Master of Science degree in Plant Ecology from the University of Toronto and a Law degree from Queen’s University. He is a noted public speaker and has written numerous scholarly articles, as well as Canada v. The Environment, his 1999 book on federal environmental assessment law and policy.

Stephen is a long-time triathlete and an avid wilderness traveler. His most exciting wilderness experience was seeing the Porcupine caribou herd crossing the swollen Firth River in northern Yukon.

Christian Holz

Christian is a climate hero who uses his superpower of scholarship and numerical models to fight climate villains wherever he can find them in the world. That's why he is always seen at UN climate conferences. He and his companions of the superhero team CERP (believed to stand for Climate Equity Reference Project alas the real meaning known to few) are combining their powers of rigorous scholarship and effective advocacy to elevate the role of equity and fairness as enablers of ambitious domestic and international climate action while protecting the right of the world's poor to a better life. Together they were central in creating Fair Shares: A Civil Society Equity Review of INDCs ( which made a impact at the Paris climate talks, exposing villains and leaders alike; supported by over 150 organizations, it even made it into the Paris speeches of some heads of states.

Anna Johnston

Anna Johnston is staff counsel at West Coast Environmental Law, where she works on federal and BC environmental law reform.

Born in Coast Salish territory in Victoria, BC, Anna is co-Chair of the national Environmental Planning and Assessment Caucus of the Canadian Environmental Network and sits on the Multi-Interest Advisory Committee appointed by the Minister of Environment and Climate Change to assist with the Expert Panel-appointed review of federal environmental assessment processes.

Steve Kux

Steve Kux is a Climate and Clean Energy Policy Analyst with the David Suzuki Foundation focusing on transportation, carbon pricing and renewable energy development. He has worked closely on DSF’s transportation campaigns ranging from organizing a coalition of 145 community groups in support of the Metro Vancouver Transit and Transportation Plebiscite to co-authoring the recent report “Breaking Gridlock: B.C.’s transit investment deficit and what can be done to fix it.” He has worked on research projects for Parks Canada, the Federation of Mountain Clubs of B.C. and Simon Fraser University’s Tourism and Policy Research Group. Steve studied in the Masters of Resource and Environmental Management program at Simon Fraser University and holds a B.A. in psychology from Wilfrid Laurier University.

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Melina Laboucan-Massimo

Melina Laboucan-Massimo is Lubicon Cree from Northern Alberta. She has worked on social, environmental and climate justice issues for the past 15 years. Melina has studied and worked in Brazil, Australia, Mexico, and Canada focusing on resource extraction, media literacy and Indigenous rights & responsibilities. She has produced short documentaries, researched, and worked on topics ranging from the tar sands, land protection, water issues and cultural appropriation. Melina has been vocal on the issue of Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women in Canada after the suspicious death of her sister Bella whose case still remains unsolved. 

For the past 9 years Melina has worked against tar sands expansion as a Climate & Energy campaigner with Greenpeace in Alberta as well as with the Indigenous Environmental Network internationally. Melina has a Masters degree in Indigenous Governance from the University of Victoria with a focus on Renewable Energy in First Nation communities. Melina recently completed a 20.8kW solar installation in her home community of Little Buffalo in the heart of the tar sands. Melina serves as a board member for and is also a steering committee member for the Energy Futures Lab.

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Jen Lash

Jen Lash isthe Executive Director of the Sisu Institute through which she provides communications and strategy support to organizations and First Nations working on the tar sands campaign including pipeline campaigns, stopping the expansion of the tar sands in Alberta, and climate polices. 

Jen has worked on conservation issues in British Columbia for 20 years and, prior to joining the Tar Sands Campaign, she was a pioneer in the ocean conservation movement. 

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Avi Lewis

Avi Lewis is the director of the feature documentaries This Changes Everything (2015) and The Take (2004) and one of the co-authors of the Leap Manifesto.

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Danika Billie Littlechild, B.A. (Hons.), L.L.B, L.L.M.

Danika Billie Rose Littlechild is a Cree lawyer from Neyaskweyak (Ermineskin Cree Nation), in Maskwacis Alberta, Treaty No. 6 territory. Born and raised in Maskwacis, Danika works with Indigenous Peoples in Treaties 6, 7 & 8 (Alberta), in Canada and internationally. Danika’s law practice focuses on Indigenous law, environmental law and international law.  Danika currently serves on the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) Advisory Committee on Climate Action and the Environment, and since 2007 has served on AFN's National Water Technical Advisory Committee. Danika is currently consulting legal counsel with the International Indian Treaty Council (, through which she has extensively engaged in various United Nations mechanisms, treaty bodies and special procedures -  including in particular multilateral environmental agreements and human rights conventions. Danika is the Vice-President of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO. Danika was the recipient in 2015 of the Esquao Award (honouring Indigenous Women in Alberta) and was also a recipient of the Alberta Aboriginal Role Models Award for Justice in the same year. She is passionate about the rights of Indigenous Peoples (in particular children, women and Elders) and the environment, especially water.  

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Stephanie McDonald

Stephanie McDonald is a Senior Policy Advisor with the Canadian Foodgrains Bank (CFGB), a partnership of 15 Canadian churches and church-based agencies working together to end global hunger. Stephanie has a BA Honours in International Development Studies and Canadian Studies from Trent University and a Masters of Public Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in the UK. Stephanie lived and worked in the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Malawi and Tanzania before joining CFGB. She grew up on a farm in southwestern Ontario and now calls Ottawa home.

Leslie Malone

Leslie is a Senior Analyst, Climate & Energy and Canada Project Director working from Acadia Center’s Providence office. She works on distributed and large-scale renewable energy and transmission policy as well as energy efficiency and carbon pricing issues in the U.S. and Canada. She is part of Acadia’s Climate and Energy Analysis (CLEAN) Center, and has led various studies including assessments of the value of solar and the macroeconomic impacts of investing in energy efficiency.

Dale Marshall

Dale Marshall is National Program Manager for Environmental Defence Canada. He has over 15 years of experience working in environmental protection, the vast majority on climate change and energy issues. Most of Dale’s work has been in policy advocacy and campaigning. However, Dale also developed VSO International’s climate change strategy, with a focus on adaptation, and spent two years in Cambodia building the capacity of local NGOs to integrate climate change impacts and adaptation into their programs.  

Dale has a Master’s in Resource and Environmental Management from Simon Fraser University, a B.Sc. in Environmental Science and Biology from the University of Western Ontario and a Mechanical Engineering degree from McGill University. Dale grew up in Sept-Iles, Quebec and now lives in Ottawa with his partner and two kids.  

Bianca Mugyenyi

Dr. Laurel Murray

Dr. Laurel Murray is Director of Climate Change in Focus based in Vancouver, British Columbia. She has over 14 years’ experience in climate change policy including work on the UNFCCC negotiations, Green Climate Fund and mainstreaming climate-resilient development in LDCs and small island states. More recently, Laurel returned home to support Canada’s commitment and sustainable future with her current work addressing renewable energy, climate finance and Just Transition.

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Grand Chief Derek Nepinak

Niibin Makwa, (Derek Nepinak, LLB, BA (Hons.), is in his 5th year and second term as the Grand Chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC), the largest political advocacy organization in Manitoba with over 60 First Nations communities represented. Prior to his role at the AMC, Derek was the Chief of his community, the Pine Creek First Nation in west central Manitoba, where he was also the chairman of the West Region Tribal Council and sat on the Treaty four executive council for Manitoba. Derek has instituted a rights based approach to indigenous leadership, grounded in inherent and treaty rights, which often runs in contrast to programs, services and policies within the Indian Act system. 

Derek has a First Class Honours B.A. from the University of Alberta, a Law degree from the University of Saskatchewan, completed the intensive program in indigenous lands, resources & governance at Osgoode Hall Law School, and partial completion of his Masters degree in indigenous governance at the University of Winnipeg. While attending law school, Derek was recognized for his work in the community and his legal writing, having earned the Roger Carter Scholarship from the Native Law centre at the University of Saskatchewan, as well as the best student submission award to the Indigenous law Journal at the University of Toronto.

Teika Newton

Teika Newton is the executive director of Transition Initiative Kenora, a small environmental organization in Kenora, Ontario (Treaty 3 territory). She works on a range of complex, intersecting issues involving climate and clean energy solutions and planning, watershed management, social and environmental justice advocacy, and community sustainable development.  Teika has a master’s degree in evolutionary biology, and many years of experience in project management, social sciences research, and community reconciliation work. With her partner and their two children, they are constructing a sustainable, off-grid dream house in the wilderness of beautiful northwestern Ontario.

Jay Nordenstrom

Jay Nordenstrom is the Executive Director of NAIMA Canada representing the mineral fibre and wool insulation manufacturers. He promotes energy efficiency and environmental preservation through the use of his members’ products and encourages the safe production and use of these materials. Mr. Nordenstrom is also on the Executive Committee of the Canadian Energy Efficiency Alliance. Formerly, Jay was Executive Director for the Canadian Association of Railway Suppliers. Prior to leading associations, Mr. Nordenstrom worked for the Mayor of Ottawa as well as the federal Secretary of State, International Financial Institutions. 

Jay is the former President of the Carleton University Alumni Association. He currently sits on the Carleton University Board of Governors. He is also actively involved with a variety of charitable causes including the United Way where he received the Community Builder Award. He is also a past volunteer and board member for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ottawa.  He was awarded Ottawa’s Forty under 40 distinction which recognizes accomplished leaders who are under the age of 40 and also give back to their community.

Emma Norton

Emma Norton is a graduate of the University of King’s College, Halifax with a combined honours degree in Environment, Sustainability, and Society and International  Development Studies. Motivated by social justice and climate change, she strives for a fossil fuel free electricity grid in Atlantic Canada, where energy is affordable for all. At the Ecology Action Centre, Emma has been coordinating the Culture of Efficiency Project since 2012. She is currently pursuing her interest in Building Science and Net Zero Building Design through certifications, while simlultaneously using her skills, passion, and knowledge in the Culture of Efficiency Project.  Its current iteration focuses on coaching local non-profits through energy efficiency retrofits in order reduce carbon emissions, energy bills, and increase resources to their services and building comfort. Emma was also the Materials and Volunteers Manager for the Ecology Action Centre's showcase green renovation project in 2015. 

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Fannie Olivier

Fannie Olivier is a political reporter in the Ottawa bureau of La Presse Canadienne since 2008. Environment is one of her beat.

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Marissa Otezia

Marissa Oteiza is the Hay River office manager and environmental educator for Ecology North in the Northwest Territories. Prior to starting her career at Ecology North she graduated from the University of Alberta with her Degree in Elementary Education and a minor in fine arts. While at university, Marissa attended the Student sustainability summit and participated in local food production through the Strathcona Farmers Market and City Market in Edmonton, AB. 

Ecology North is a charitable, non-profit organization that was formed in 1971 to support sound environmental decision-making on an individual, community and regional level. Our programs focus on five priorities, which include climate change, environmental education, water, waste reduction and local food production. A common thread throughout all of the Ecology North programming is an emphasis on environmental, social and community well being. 

While at Ecology North, Marissa has worked on various projects including educational resources for the World Wildlife Fund, Species at Risk and is currently working on Science Focus, an environmental science based curriculum resource for northern teachers. She was a key organizer for the Young Leader’s Summit on Northern Climate Change (YLSNCC) in 2015 and is currently planning the next Young Leader’s Summit to be held in Whitehorse, YK July 2017. The YLSNCC is a networking opportunity for youth and young adults in the three territories and happens every two years. This summit is a time for northerners to talk about issues affecting local communities due to climate change such as permafrost melt, changing weather patterns, increased forest fire danger and lower than average water levels.  

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Andrea Peart

Andrea Peart is the National Health, Safety and Environment Officer with the Public Service Alliance of Canada.  Formerly the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC)’s National Representative of Health, Safety and Environment for a decade, Andrea has a long history of policy advocacy and grass-roots organizing to ensure climate action does not put an unfair burden on low income Canadians and ensures good job creation.  Andrea is a leading expert on Just Transition, the creation of climate jobs and industrial transformation.  Before joining the CLC, Andrea ran Andrea Peart Consulting, was an organizer with the federal New Democratic Party of Canada and prior to that, she was the Director of Health and Environment with the Sierra Club of Canada. Andrea is currently the co-chair of the Green Economy Network and is the chair of the board of Climate Action Network Canada. Andrea lives in Ottawa.

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Karine Peloffy

Karine Péloffy has been a lawyer since 2007 and is the Executive Director of the Quebec Center for Environmental Law (CQDE).  She is the climate change change working group lead on the multi-interest advisory committee to the expert panel on federal environmental assessment reform and is a published author on climate change law.

In 2013, she published the first comparative law article on climate litigation in Canada and the U.S., which analyzed the case of Kivalina v. ExxonMobil in light of the jurisprudence of the Supreme Courts of both countries. She has presented the results of this article before government commissions and at university conferences. She also has campaigned with the Eradicating Ecocide Global Initiative in London and has lived, traveled, and volunteered with several initiatives dedicated to social and environmental justice in America, Africa, Europe, and Australasia. Ms. Péloffy was recently awarded the Lawyer of the Year / Tomorrow’s Leader in the alternative career category by the Montreal Young Bar Association.

She holds an M.Sc. in Environmental Change and Management from the University of Oxford and a B.C.L./LL.B. from McGill University’s unique transystemic law program. As the CQDE director, she has been active on the Center’s legal files, such as two successful injunctions to protect species at risk in the last year, including against a proposed oil export terminal in a beluga whale nursery in the Saint Lawrence River. Ms. Péloffy formerly practiced commercial litigation at a top tier Canadian law firm and served as a community rights lawyer for forest communities and civil society organizations in the Congo Basin countries of Africa.

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Kim Perrotta

Kim Perrotta is the Executive Director for the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE).  She has a Master's degree in Health Science and 32 years of experience working on environmental issues from a health perspective.  Kim has done research, policy development and advocacy on issues related to air quality, climate change, toxic substances and the built environment for organizations such as Toronto Public Health, the Ontario Public Health Association and the Heart and Stroke Foundation.  Since joining CAPE 16 months ago, Kim has focused much of her time the phase-out of coal-fired power plants in Alberta and across the country. 

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Eddy Pérez 

Amara Possian

With roots in the youth climate movement, Amara is a Campaign Manager at Leadnow, where she leads rapid response campaigns on Indigenous rights and economic justice. She integrated large-scale digital campaigning and field organizing while managing Vote Together, Leadnow's campaign to help defeat the Harper Conservatives.  

She chairs the board of the Centre for Story-based Strategy and has a background in designing and running advocacy and electoral campaigns and deliberative processes, as well as media relations, non-profit governance, digital engagement, and training and curriculum design.  

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Shamus Reid

Shamus Reid is a co-founder of New/Mode, a new social venture that is reimagining democratic engagement in the digital age. Started through award-winning civic engagement organization, OpenMedia, New/Mode's mandate is to distribute OpenMedia's innovative tools and strategies that have helped them build some of the largest online campaigns in world history. New/Mode has worked with leading environmental and social justice organizations like The Leap Manifesto, the David Suzuki Foundation and SumOfUs.

The son of a social worker and a political organizer, Shamus has worked on the frontlines and in the backrooms of community engagement his whole life. He has held elected leadership positions in the student movement, been a communications consultant and served in media relations roles for federal and provincial political parties. With New/Mode, he is leading the architecting of a new web platform for building online campaigns that uses data to effectively empower people to influence government decision-makers on a massive scale.

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Charlotte Rodgers

Bernard Rudny

Bernard Rudny is a strategy and communications consultant who works with nonprofits and foundations. Prior to launching his consulting practice, he was the director of communications at the Pembina Institute.

Before he started working on climate change communications, Bernard managed get-out-the-vote and elections media campaigns for Apathy is Boring. He has also been involved in open data and open government initiatives since 2010, including co-founding Open North and advising Powered by Data.

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Graham Saul

Graham is a co-founder and the Executive Director of Ecology Ottawa, a grassroots environmental organization focused on the urban revolution in the City of Ottawa. He has more than 20 years of experience working on social and environmental issues. He developed Oxfam International's first joint advocacy capacity building program in Maputo, Mozambique, where he worked from 1994 to 1999. From 2000 to 2004, Graham worked in Washington, D.C., as a Program Manager for The Bank Information Centre, an environmental organization that acts as a clearinghouse for information on the activities of the World Bank and other international financial organizations. Before starting full-time at Ecology Ottawa roughly three years ago, Graham was the Executive Director of Climate Action Network Canada for almost five years. 

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Kim Scott

Robert Shirkey

Rob Shirkey is a recognized authority on the subject of climate change risk disclosures or ‘warning labels’ for gas pumps. He has given lectures on the topic across North America and has been featured in media all over the world. Rob is a recipient of Canada’s 2017 Clean50 Award and was also named a 2016 Agent of Change by the Centre for Social Innovation and Green Shield Canada Foundation.

Rob’s proposal has been endorsed by over a hundred academics and leaders in various disciplines from universities across North America. City and town councils across Canada have voted in favour of the concept and several U.S. cities are also pursuing the idea too. The idea is now being implemented in several communities on Canada’s west coast. Media outlets across North America are calling these historic global firsts. Rob is currently building a massive database of politicians’ emails to share these examples of leadership with the world.

Rob is a lawyer from Toronto, Canada. Prior to founding Our Horizon and launching its unique approach to addressing climate change, Rob operated a private practice in downtown Toronto. He also has experience as an Assistant City Solicitor and Prosecutor. Before completing his law degree, Rob studied business, economics, and psychology at the undergraduate level. He graduated with distinction and was the university valedictorian. He also once rode his bicycle across Canada!

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Natalie Southworth

Natalie has provided strategic communications to environmental groups across Canada for the past 15 years. She has helped craft and popularize messaging, while driving communications campaigns that influence decision makers, investors and voters. She has worked on a variety of issues, from protecting British Columbia’s coastal temperate rainforest and wild salmon to protecting the boreal forest of Ontario. For the past nine years, since the early days of Alberta’s ‘dirty oil,’ Natalie has worked primarily on the campaign to stop tar sands expansion. Prior to her communications career, she worked in various capacities as a journalist - as a documentary film producer, freelance writer and as a full-time reporter at the Globe and Mail. She holds a graduate degree in journalism from Ryerson University and is pursuing a Masters of Fine Art at the University of British Columbia. Natalie lives in Montreal with her husband, Rene, and two boys.

Lindsay Telfer

Lindsay Telfer has two decades of experience working with organizations, institutions and governments in developing policies and processes related to sustainability and public engagement. Her experience includes designing and participating in multi-stakeholder consultations and negotiations, strategic planning development, and communications and marketing geared towards public engagement in sustainability solutions.  Lindsay has built a knowledgeable repertoire of leading edge strategies for effective communications, messaging, and engagement practices. She has worked on a diversity of projects, including: multi-stakeholder public consultation for the Province of Alberta; leading community engagement initiatives for Western Universities' sustainability strategy development; and most recently developing the Freshwater Alliance's successful grassroots capacity building program, trainings, and public engagement coaching practice. Lindsay has a Masters degree in Environmental Studies from York University.

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Stephen Thomas

Stephen is the Energy Campaign Coordinator with the Ecology Action Centre (EAC) in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The EAC is Atlantic Canada’s largest environmental advocacy organization. Stephen works on a broad portfolio of energy and climate campaigns and policy issues in Nova Scotia, the Maritimes and Canada. With a keen focus on a justice-based transition to a fossil-free economy and the community-based aspects of renewable energy development, Stephen is excited to be with the Ecology Action Centre to be part of this work.

Stephen has a mechanical engineering degree and has specialized in energy systems analysis during his studies at Dalhousie University. Before joining the Energy Action Team staff, Stephen worked as an engineer and project manager with two of the leading renewable energy developers in Nova Scotia, developing 40 MW of community wind energy under the COMFIT program, and helping to manage a development protfolio of over 300MW of community-focused projects across North America.

Stephen attended the COP21 climate negotiations in Paris as part of the Canadian Youth Delegation, is a founding member of the fossil fuel divestment campaign at Dalhousie University, and a member of various climate justice organizations. Stephen is also a founding member of If You Build It, a community organization in Halifax building small-scale wind and solar energy systems.

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Delia Warren

Delia Warren is a member of Iron and Earth -- an organization focused on retraining oil workers for jobs in the emerging renewable energy industry, and in promoting the development of this industry in Canada. As a mechanical engineer with 7 years experience working in the offshore oil and gas industry in Canada and abroad, Delia appreciates just how transferable these skills are, and recognises the importance of diversifying the energy industry through retraining and refocusing the economy towards renewables. In 2017 Iron and Earth East, the eastern branch of Iron and Earth, are launching a 365-day greenhouse project, powered by renewables. This project will act as a social enterprise, demonstrating the value of renewable energy and food sustainability, while providing training opportunities in various renewable energy technologies. Delia is passionate about the future of clean energy and in promoting the transition to a greener economy at home in Newfoundland and Labrador, in Canada, and around the world.

Kiki Wood

Kiki is a community organizer working and living on unceded Mi’kmaq territory in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She identifies as a white, queer, settler, who is interested in building resilient communities towards social and environmental justice. Kiki has been working and volunteering on issues of social justice since 2007. She now works primarily in climate justice organizing as the National Director for the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition - a national grassroots organization that works to connect and empower youth towards environmental justice. She believes in the ability of people power to create system change and further a just transition towards a better future.