Please sign up for updates (menu to the right) as we build the program for 2016. Below is a link to the speakers and their presentations from 2015.
View 2015 Advisory Panel here.
(Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, Province of Ontario)
Prior to being elected Member of Parliament Amarjeet Sohi was a three-term Edmonton City Councillor. He was first elected in 2007 and then re-elected in 2010 and 2013.
Dedicated to improving Edmonton’s infrastructure and livability, Amarjeet represented the city on the Canadian Urban Transit Association, and is a strong advocate for Light Rail Transit. Amarjeet also advocated municipal interests to other orders of government through his delegation to the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association. He therefore understands the importance of building strong relationships between governments in order to build strong, vibrant and resilient communities. He has been a prominent leader on city and provincial issues, volunteering with Public Interest Alberta, the Centre for International Alternatives, and the Canadian Labour Congress.
Amarjeet works tirelessly to promote learning and cooperation among cultural communities. While on council he led City Council’s Immigration, Multiculturalism and Racism Free Edmonton initiatives. Amarjeet has received the Edmonton Interfaith Advocate award and John Humphrey Centre’s Human Rights Advocate award for promoting welcoming and socially inclusive communities, the Man of Honour Leadership Award from the Centre to End All Sexual Exploitation and the Recognizing Immigrant Success in Edmonton Life Time Achievement Award.
As a former member of the Edmonton Police Commission, Amarjeet believes in building safe and strong communities. Amarjeet also took a leadership role to create the Police Chief’s Indo-Canadian Liaison Committee, the Punjabi Cultural Association, and the Punjabi Arts Association.
Minister Sohi grew up in the Indian state of Punjab and immigrated to Edmonton in 1981.
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Emerald Technology Ventures is a globally recognized brand for venture investments in energy, water, materials and industrial IT. Helge has been responsible for the water sector within Emerald since 2006 – defining strategy, driving investment processes and supporting portfolio companies. His past and present involvements in that role include: Board Director at Optimatics (software for advanced infrastructure planning) and Pure Technologies (structural monitoring of water mains, TSX listed); Advisor and Board Observer to inge watertechnologies (UF membrane products, acquired by BASF), AquaSpy (irrigation monitoring), the Pressure Pipe Inspection Company and TaKaDu (pioneer in smart water grids).Helge has also been active in numerous industrial alliances & initiatives, e.g. as an initial member of the Smart Water Networks Forum (SWAN), as Chairman of the Selection Committee of the Swiss Bluetec Bridge, as advisory board member of the EU research project DEMEAU and as an advisor to many conferences including Bluetech Innovation Forum, World Water-Tech Investment Summit and Singapore TechXchange.Prior to joining Emerald, Helge conducted research at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (eawag) in the Environmental Engineering Division. He also worked at the German Federal Waterways Engineering and Research Institute and in various water projects in South America.Helge holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich and a Master’s Degree in Civil Engineering from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT).
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Since 1997 Dianne Dillon-Ridgley has been a director at Interface, Inc., global manufacturer of modular carpet and a leader in sustainable design. She was a director at Green Mountain Energy for the first six years and still chairs the Environmental Integrity Committee for the company. She was appointed by the White House to the United States delegation for the Earth Summit in Rio, UNGASS-’97 & WSSD in South Africa, making her the only person to serve on all three U.S. delegations. She is founding chair—emeritus of Plains Justice, an environmental law center for the Great Plains states in the U.S. and is a trustee for the Center for International Environmental Law, national chair of the Women’s Network for a Sustainable Future, and the former national chair of River Network. From 1999 through its tenure she was a member of the Oxford U. Commission on Sustainable Consumption and the first U.S. member appointed to the Global Water Partnership in Stockholm. In 2000 she chaired the Millennium DPI conference at the UN, which first introduced the idea for the Millennium Development Goals.
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is the executive director of the Canadian Water and Wastewater Association. He started with the CWWA in May of 2012 after 20 years as a senior municipal administrator where he oversaw several infrastructure projects including a new wastewater treatment facility. Robert holds a BA in Geography from Carleton University and a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Western Ontario where his work focused on water policy following the Walkerton tragedy. Robert has served on the Source Protection Working Group for the St. Lawrence River and has served on the Municipal Advisory Panel to the Ontario Clean Water Agency. He feels his work as a municipal town manager has made him a jack of all trades when it comes to municipal government and provides him the credentials to speak on behalf of municipal utilities across Canada.
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Matt Howard is the first director of the Alliance for Water Stewardship-North America (AWS-NA), a program of The Water Council. He leads the North American implementation of the AWS International Water Stewardship Standard which is a strategic framework for companies to identify and mitigate water risks within direct operations and supply chains. He is also working with The Water Council to develop other water-related sustainability and stewardship programs for North American companies. Prior to joining AWS-NA, Matt served as Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett’s Sustainability Director from 2010 to 2015 and spent 11 years with the U.S. Department of Commerce in Washington, DC. He published North America’s first municipal Urban Water Systems benchmarking report, helped create the U.S. Department of Commerce’s first sustainable manufacturing initiative, and assisted the White House Council on Environmental Quality on implementing the Administration's Green Government directive. Matt was recently appointed by the EPA Administrator to the National Advisory Council on Environmental Policy and Technology. He has a B.A. and M.A. in international economics and is a LEED and Lean Six Sigma accredited professional.
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President and CEO, BLOOM
Kevin is a business executive with 28 years of diversified experience in the private and public sectors. He has provided the leadership on several award-winning BLOOM initiatives in the agri-food, property redevelopment and clean technology sectors.
Currently, he is leading a 5-year project to make sustainable water use a reality in targeted sectors of Ontario’s $39 billion food and beverage processing industry. This unique project is aligning diverse stakeholder interests and equipping the industry with the know-how and tools to implement practical water and resource management solutions. Kevin has an Executive MBA from Athabasca University and a Master of Science in Environmental Planning from the University of Toronto.
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Actual Media’s president, Todd Latham, is a media entrepreneur with over 22 years of experience in business publishing and communications within the Canadian environment, infrastructure and water sectors.
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Brenda has led the Southern Ontario Water Consortium (SOWC) since it was created in 2011. SOWC helps water companies access unique facilities for real world demonstration, find the right researcher match across its 10 academic partner institutions and leverage R&D investments. With support from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, SOWC has recently established the Advancing Water Technologies fund for collaborative demonstration projects by southern Ontario water companies. As Senior Policy Advisor to two Ontario Ministers of Environment Brenda played a key role in the introduction and passage of the Water Opportunities and Water Conservation Act. She is a member of the Forum for Leadership on Water (FLOW Canada).
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Roy MacGregor has been a journalist for 40 years and has been with the Globe and Mail
since 2002. He has been nominated for 10 National Newspaper Awards, winning twice, as well as winning four National Magazine Awards and two ACTRA Awards for television screenwriting. He is the author of some 50 books, 30 of them in the internationally successful Screech Owls
hockey mystery series for young readers. He has written several books on hockey, on Canada, on the James Bay Cree, and on Tom Thomson. His latest book is Canoe Country: The Making of Canada
(published in September 2015). His book Home Team: Fathers, Sons & Hockey
was shortlisted for the Governor-General’s Award and his memoir about his father, A Life in the Bush
, won the prestigious U.S. Rutstrum Award as the best book on the wilderness. In 2005, Roy was named an Officer in the Order of Canada. He is currently working on a book about Canadian rivers to be released in 2017. He lives in Kanata, Ontario, with his wife Ellen.
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Project Manager - Water Stewardship, TRCA
Eric is water stewardship project manager for Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA). In this position, he facilitates industry support for businesses in their initiatives related to water sustainability through stakeholder engagement, partnership development, and execution of corporate social responsibility objectives.
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Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, Province of Ontario
Glen Murray has a lifetime of activism in urban planning, sustainable development and community health. He was the Senior Resident and Visiting Fellow at the Faculty of Architecture and Landscape Design at Massey College, University of Toronto and worked on the Development of the University’s City Centre. He was a Managing Partner of AuthentiCITY, a Toronto based Urban Sustainability consulting and planning firm.
He was appointed President and CEO of the Canadian Urban Institute in 2007 and led the development of award winning programs in community energy mapping & planning, regional economic development and culture lead regeneration of urban centres.
He has served on several university, hospital and community boards including the Expo 2015 Bid Committee and the Toronto District School Board’s Reference Group for Improving Services for Marginalized Students.
Glen was appointed by the Prime Minister of Canada to Chair the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy (NRTEE), where he helped to shape environmental policy and respond to climate change in Canada.
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Dr. Peter Gallant
President and CEO, WaterTAP
Dr. Peter Gallant is a serial entrepreneur with extensive experience in the global water technology sector. As the founding President and CEO of Kingston, Ontario-based Pathogen Detection Systems Inc. (PDS), he led the development of a novel automated microbial detection system. In 2009, PDS was acquired by Veolia Water Solutions and Technologies, a division of the world’s largest environmental services company – and became ENDETEC – the global water quality sensor platform for Veolia Water.
From 2009 until April, 2015, Dr. Gallant served as Vice President, Business Development and Regulatory Affairs of ENDETEC, notably leading the team that secured the first-ever US EPA approval for an automated microbiological testing system for regulatory compliance testing of drinking water samples under the Total Coliform Rule. Over his career he has founded and led a start-up in the software industry, has served in several advisory roles for government agencies and start-up companies, and he currently serves as co-Chair of the Steering Committee of the American Water Works Association’s committee on barriers to innovation in the water sector.
He has authored or co-authored numerous technical publications, is a co-inventor on several patents on innovative water quality sensor technologies, and is a frequent speaker at industry events worldwide.
Dr. Gallant is also an adjunct faculty member in the internationally ranked Queen’s School of Business, where he lectures on entrepreneurship, strategy, innovation and new venture finance at the undergraduate and MBA level. Dr. Gallant holds B.Sc., M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada.
Prior to joining the WaterTAP management team, he served as a Director of WaterTAP from its inception until March 2015, including most recently a term as Vice Chair of the Board. Previously, he had been appointed by the Provincial Government to serve on the Ontario Council on University Affairs.
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Nick is Executive Director of Strategic Partnerships for the Ontario Clean Water Agency and the former General Manager of Operations and Maintenance for the Lakeview and Lorne Park Water Treatment Plants and the G.E. Booth and Clarkson Wastewater Treatment Plants. He will speak on the Water-Energy Nexus
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Vice President, Learning and Insights, MaRS
Usha Srinivasan leads a team dedicated to nurturing the talents of Ontario entrepreneurs through a range of diverse programs, including the Business Acceleration Program, Data Catalyst and Studio Y. Together, they provide advisory services and leadership training, connect entrepreneurs with program funding, help leverage open data and market intelligence, and work to make online and onsite educational content accessible through Regional Innovation Centres across the province, including MaRS.
Prior to joining MaRS, she worked at Frost & Sullivan, a leading global market research and consulting company where she published key research papers, consulted for companies of varying sizes and managed a group of analysts to provide quality market research and consulting services. She has technical & industry background in water, environment and building technologies space having worked with global clients such as GE, Siemens, Veolia, American water, IBM, Honeywell and Brita. She holds a BSc Hon in Environmental Microbiology from University of Bristol and a PhD in Environmental Sciences from University of Abertay in Dundee, Scotland.
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Alex has worked for almost ten years as consultant at Royal HaskoningDHV and for several years as part-time scientific researcher at Delft University of Technology. He finished his PhD thesis in civil engineering entitled “Integrated modeling of ozonation for optimization of drinking water treatment”, a drinking water supply emphasis, in 2007. Since 2008 van der Helm works as Advisor at the Research and Development department of Waternet, the public water utility of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Currently, he does project management of water cycle research, he advises on drinking water treatment technology and on IT & water research at Waternet, besides he coordinates and publishes international scientific publications. Next to the work in the Netherlands, Alex currently leads a project for World Waternet, the international partner of Waternet, in which support is given to the Jordan Authorities and Water companies in coping with increased stress on water infrastructure due to the high number of refugees. He was also secretary of the specialist group IT applications in the water sector of the Royal Dutch Water Association, Waternetwerk. The specialist group organizes national and international conferences on IT & water for improvement of knowledge exchange and knowledge development in the water sector. As guest at the Delft University of Technology, Alex assists PhD students.
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Jonathan Wilkinson was elected Member of Parliament for North Vancouver on October 19th, 2015. Shortly thereafter he was named Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change.
Prior to entering politics, Jonathan served on the board of the Gordon Foundation, and spent 20 years in the Clean Technology sector holding leadership positions with a number of companies dedicated to the development of green technologies. He was CEO of QuestAir Technologies and BioteQ Environmental Technologies and was Senior Vice President of Business Development with Nexterra. Previously, Jonathan was employed at Bain & Company, a leading global management consultancy.
Prior to joining Bain, Jonathan worked in public service as a constitutional negotiator, an advisor to a provincial Premier and as a federal-provincial relations specialist.
Jonathan holds an MA in International Relations from McGill University, an MA in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Oxford University - where he attended as a Rhodes scholar – and a BA from the University of Saskatchewan.
Jonathan has been an active volunteer in his community, participating as a board member for several charitable and industry organisations including the United Way of the Lower Mainland, the B.C. Technology Industries Association, Fuel Cells Canada, the BC Power Technology Alliance, the BC Chapter of the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association and the Walter and Duncan Gordon Foundation. Many weekends Jonathan can be found on the field as a coach for the North Shore Girls Soccer Association. He lives in North Vancouver with his wife Tara and their two teenaged daughters.
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