SPEAKER BIOS

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KHADIR AHMED

Khadir Ahmed is Vice President for Canada Payment Operations at ADP.  Having spent most of his career in payments and financial services, he now leads a national team of Canadian associates with leadership of payment processes, high risk collection, and exception handling, related to $147 billion dollars of annual client payroll funds and related disbursements.  Khadir has also led global payment programs and initiatives through his leadership of ADP’s Global Centre of Enablement organization.

 

With over 18 years experience in the financial services industry, Khadir is passionate about engaging others on payments innovation and modernization.  Prior to joining ADP, Khadir was responsible for Payments Infrastructure and Strategic Innovation at TD Bank.  He also worked at IBM Canada as a Senior Consultant in the Financial Services sector.  Khadir has a bachelor’s degree in Information Systems from the University of Toronto.

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ALI BARAKAT

Ali supports a highly engaged mid-market sales team composed of 90 sales executives which focuses on digital transformation for all businesses in the 30 – 1000 employee space. Solutions range from simple wireless plans to very complex custom cyber security solutions. Ali leads by example and has a results-driven leadership style. He has spent the vast majority of his career recruiting and promoting talent at different levels of the organization.

 

Ali has been with TELUS for over 16 years in a variety of leadership roles across Sales, Operations, CEO escalations, technical support and customer care before starting a highly engaged sales team from scratch in 2018.  Ali first started at TELUS doing technical support for wireline customers in the Alberta and BC freshly graduated from University with a degree in Computer Science. Later, Ali completed a Graduate Diploma in Business Administration at the John Molson School of Business which helped propel his leadership career.

 

When not working, focuses on spending time with his wife and two kids, enjoying travelling when the time is right, and playing sports as much as possible.

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FINBARR BEGLEY

Finbarr Begley is Cavell’s Senior Analyst specialising Cloud Networking, Infrastructure, and Security, including areas like SD-WAN, SASE, IoT and 5G. In this role he speaks to Vendors, and many types of channel organisation from operators to MSPs and IT Resellers. He gets to spend his time thinking about the future of networks, how people with connect, communicate, and collaborate in the future. He is also a regular speaker at events and webinars, and regularly involved projects helping SPs determine product strategy, and PE firms with CDD and M&A evaluations. Before becoming an analyst Finbarr worked as an Account Direct at a B2B Technology Marketing Agency, working with Cybersecurity, Telecoms, Manufacturing and Business Services companies to build their profile and strategy, including brands like Ribbon, Forcepoint, Sanmina, CBNL and Wire.

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JEAN BÉLANGER

A passionate entrepreneur, Jean Bélanger draws upon more than a quarter-century of experience at Premier Tech. In the course of his career, his determination, dynamism and ability to build on various innovative concepts allowed him to guide this Rivière-du-Loup native company as a world-class leader and pioneer in four core industries: Growers and Consumers, Systems and Automation, Digital and Water and Environment.

 

Through his unifying spirit, open-mindedness and easily approachable nature, Jean Bélanger has played an integral part in defining the very core of Premier Tech’s identity, which revolves around a strong collective Culture. By surrounding himself with talented people, encouraging intrapreneurship and leveraging the Premier Tech team’s desire to constantly exceed its ambitions, he remains successful in guiding Premier Tech’s steady and consistent growth despite a globalizing and increasingly complex market.

 

Along with the Leadership Team, he has been able to bring Premier Tech to the next level — from a 50 million dollars North American business in 1989 to the current global business. Thanks to the commitment of some 4 700 team members in 28 countries and the implementation of 47 plants in 16 countries, Premier Tech now records sales of nearly one billion dollars.

 

In addition to his work at Premier Tech, Jean Bélanger strongly believes in the importance of being fully committed through an active company involvement in the key areas of health, education and sports. He currently sits on Premier Tech’s Board of Directors, and also on diverse Business Advisory Boards to share his experience and knowhow with other Quebec businesses.

 

Jean Bélanger holds a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Industrial Engineering from Polytechnique Montréal.

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CARL BOUTET

Carl is a Montreal based business strategist and board advisor with over 25 years of hands-on operational, marketing, merchandising and retail executive experience. He has worked across a full arrayof retailer environments from the very large, such as 10 years with Costco Wholesale to working as astrategy consultant for a group of 800 independent retailers across Canada.

 

As the founder of StudioRx, he advises retailers, business leaders, b2c solution providers, companies and researchers on how to tailor their solutions according to consumers’ evolving needs and build effective commercial strategies. He is currently managing director of the Quebec Center for Commercial Innovation.

 

Recently named by Rethink Retail among the world’s 100 top most influential retail thinkers , he’s keynoted on major stages & screens around the world including NRF Big Show, ShopTalk, RCC STORE, Store of the Future (UK), ASEAN Retail Summit, Egyptian Retail Summit and Economic Forum of the Americas. He is a regular contributor to CBC/Radio-Canada, BNN Bloomberg TV, CBC News, Radio Canada Premiere and CTV News. He is currently completing his first book, The Great Acceleration: The Race to Retail Resilience.

 

He holds an MBA from Queen’s University and advises several startups, retail associations and innovation labs including the Retail Council of Canada, Turbodega, Leav and is the principal advisor for the Retail Innovation Lab at McGill University. He also is since August 2020, lead marketing instructor at the McGill University Executive Institute.

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KEN BROOKS

Ken is the leader of EY’s Lead Advisory (M&A, TRE, and IA) practice for the Province of Quebec and is EY’s global M&A leader for the packaging industry. Over the past 27+ years Ken has provided a range of transaction advisory services relating to mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, restructurings and joint ventures to established and entrepreneurial growth companies, private and public, locally and globally. In addition to a significant number of completed sell-side engagements, Ken is regularly called upon to assist companies and mid to large sized corporates and PE funds in their evaluation of buy-side opportunities.

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DOMINIQUE BROWN

A seasoned entrepreneur strongly focused on growth, Dominique Brown incorporated his first business, Beenox, when he was 17 years old. Over the years, Beenox became Québec City’s leader in the video game industry with over 500 employees and products sold around the world. Fifteen years later, Domnique transitioned from the high-tech sector to the world of chocolate by acquiring Chocolats Favoris. Thanks to its exceptional team, the small chocolate shop underwent rapid growth in just a few years. Chocolats Favoris has won several prestigious awards in Québec and Canada and today, is one of the most important companies in Canada with 1500 employees and over fifty chocolate shops in its network. No matter what industry he works in, Dominique keeps his eye on his overall goal: to conquer the world.

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ROSS CAMPBELL

Ross is co-founder of The MBO Group, an advisory firm specializing in Management Buyouts. Ross’ previous positions include co-founder of Norvest Capital (an SME focused subordinated debt fund), Managing Director of McCarville Mezzanine Capital (subordinated debt fund), Partner of Penfund Management Ltd. (a merchant bank) and Vice President Bank of Boston (an asset- based lender). Ross is past Director of Canadian Australia Chamber of Commerce (CVCA), Co-Chair CVCA Canada and Chair, CVCA SME Committee. 

 

Ross has been a member of FEI since 2011 and was Chair, Private Company Finance Committee (2011-2013), a member of FEI Australia (2013-2017) and is currently a national Board Director, FEI Canada.

 

Ross has spent his entire career lending to, investing in and advising private companies on growth, acquisitions and successions. He has sat on numerous private company Advisory Boards and, along with his fellow FEI Private Company volunteers, has a passion in helping CFO’s and entrepreneurs to succeed and grow.

 

Ross is also one of four members of FEI’s Private Company Steering Committee and is Chairing Entrepreneur Successions

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CAROLINE CODSI, ICD.D

Caroline Codsi is the Founder & Chief Equality Officer of Women in Governance, a non-profit created in 2010 with a mission to help women access decision-making bodies and male dominated fields through advocacy, major events, mentoring programs and governance training. In 2017 Women in Governance developed the first North American Parity Certification with the probono support of McKinsey & Company to close the gender gap in the workplace with an emphasis on intersectionality, recognizing added obstacles for under-represented groups (BIPOC, LGBTQ, etc). The organization is also well known for the important role men are given as allies of the cause.

 

A Citizen of the world having lived on three continents, Caroline was born in Beirut and grew up through the civil war. A highly sought-after speaker, Caroline has addressed audiences across the globe, including two TEDx. Widely quoted in national and international media, she is the recipient of numerous awards from prestigious organizations such as the United Nations’ Women’s Committee, the Quebec Business Women Network, The Federation of Chambers of Commerce to name a few.

 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau nominated Caroline to Canada’s National Gender Equality Committee and Mayor Valérie Plante to the City of Montreal’s Business Committee.  She was also recognized as a Top 20 Diversity Leading Figure in Quebec, Top 75 Canadian Immigrant, Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada and Top 100 Entrepreneurs changing the world.

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NICOLAS DUVERNOIS

From night janitor to creating world’s best vodka!

 

Nicolas is the founding president of Duvernois, Canada’s most important independent spirits producer, behind successes such as PUR vodka and romeo’s gin.

 

An entrepreneur at heart, Nicolas Duvernois has always been full of ideas. After his first business endeavor went sour in 2006, he decided to found PUR Vodka. Since he knew absolutely nothing about the industry, it all began with a Google search for the word “vodka.” In order to finance the project, Nicolas worked as a hospital janitor by night and vodka developer by day for more than four years.

 

PUR vodka is the first vodka produced in Quebec and the most award-winning Canadian vodka having won more than 80 prestigious international medals including 5 times world’s best vodka.

 

romeo’s gin is Canada’s best-selling independent gin. A canvas of expression which never ceases to evolve, every limited edition showcases selected artwork from various contemporary and urban artists, from Montreal and beyond. A gin celebrating creativity, embodying audacious and fresh flavors.

 

A unique conference to tell an extraordinary story! Peppered with humor and anecdotes, the audience will experience the full range of human emotion; from laughter to sadness, stress to relief, it’s a tale that is sure to touch everyone.

 

Nicolas shares the story of how he became a successful entrepreneur. An extraordinary story of a young man who started with nothing—or rather, who rebounded from a disastrous business undertaking and, within a few years, went from sweeping the floors of a children’s hospital to creating the world’s best vodka!

 

A true innovator, Nicolas’s strength is to transform a crazy idea to a success product. From spirits to board games, and from hand sanitizer to three best-selling books, his numerous projects have wind in the sails.

 

Bachelor’s degree holder from University of Montreal in Political, columnist in « Les Affaires », co-creator of Adopte inc. and Dragon in the popular Radio-Canada TV show « Dans l’oeil du Dragon », Nicolas was for the past three years an independent administrator of Investment Québec.

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STEPHEN FITZPATRICK

Mr. Fitzpatrick is the Chief Financial Officer of Currency Exchange International, Corp. and its wholly-owned subsidiary Exchange Bank of Canada. Mr. Fitzpatrick has spent the majority of his career in financial services. In the CXI Group, he leads the finance team combining financial and business perspectives in the CFO role to deliver value to the Group. The role includes being responsible for the outsourced Internal Audit function. Previously he was Vice President, Corporate Services and Chief Financial Officer at Canadian Credit Union Association where, in addition to his financial role, he was actively involved in payments strategy development, served on the Boards of Interac and Concentra Bank, and led a number of credit union system risk and payments initiatives. Mr. Fitzpatrick’s breadth of understanding of the financial services industry, particularly in the areas of payments and risk management, supports the CXI Group’s strategic direction and growth objectives.

 

Mr. Fitzpatrick received his MBA from University of Western Ontario and holds the Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) and Certified General Accountant (CGA) designations. He also holds the ICD.D designation.

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JOHN FORESTER

John is CFO of DBG Canada Limited (a supplier to the Truck, Automotive, Military, Agriculture sectors as a Tier One and Tier Two provider). John’s previous positions include CFO of Nucap Industries (a supplier of brake technologies and components to OEMs) and Director Corporate Planning, Director Finance, and Treasurer / Controller for Nissan Canada.

 

John has been a member of FEI Canada for over 10 years, most recently as Chair of the Treasury and Capital markets committee.

 

John has extensive international experience in financing, capital markets, M&A, growing & restructuring businesses as well as HR, IT and change management. As an FEI member John’s desire is to share his experience as well as learn from the experience of others to allow members to maximize success in their respective endeavours.

 

John is also one of four members of FEI’s Private Company Steering Committee and is Chairing Private Company Finance

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MARTIN FOX

Martin has been with the Robert Walers Group for 15 years including working in their Dublin, Ireland and London, UK offices before returning home to his native Toronto to establish the Group’s first Canadian office in 2016. As Country Manager, Martin is responsible for leading and growing a team of specialized recruitment consultants that focus on placing mid-senior level accounting & finance and legal & compliance professionals into a client base that ranges from small-medium sized private businesses to multinational public companies. Martin graduated from McGill University with a BA in Political Science in 2006, is Co-Chair of St. Joseph Hospital’s Young Professional Network (SJYP) and is on the Toronto Chapter Board of the Association of Canadian Search, Employment & Staffing Services (ACSESS).

 

As Robert Walters’ Country Manager, Martin’s responsible for leading growing recruiting consulant teams focused on placing mid-senior level accounting & finance, legal & compliance professionals into client bases that range from small-medium size private businesses to multinational public companies

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DIANE FUGÈRE

Diane is a professional with over 25 years of experience. After nine years in assurance, she was involved in integrated risk management, internal audit, review and optimization of operational and financial processes, organizational diagnostics and management support.

 

In addition, she carried out numerous engagements for various government departments and agencies, which led her to interact with senior executives, as well as board of directors and audit committee members.

 

Diane is known for her ability to simplify seemingly complex questions. She particularly enjoys doing so by leading work sessions, coaching employees and facilitating work team meetings.

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CLÉMENT GIGNAC

With a master’s degree in economics from Laval University, Clément Gignac has a wealth of experience spanning 30 years in both the private and public sectors and was until very recently a minister in the Quebec government.

 

Since December 12, 2012, Clément has been Senior Vice-President, Investments and Chief Economist at iA Financial Group. In addition to being the Group’s spokesperson on economic matters, he is also the chair of the asset allocation committee and responsible for managing the company’s diversified funds, with assets exceeding $5 billion.

 

Before joining iA Financial Group, Clément Gignac was economic a well- known economist and strategist for major financial institutions, including National Bank Financial, where he was vice-president and chief economist from 2000 to 2008. During this time, he was recognized as one of the best economic strategists in the country and is frequently contacted by the media, business leaders and governments for his expertise. Thereafter, he began his career in politics.

 

Clément Gignac is an well- regarded speaker and is often sought after by the media. In 2012, he was asked to chair the prestigious World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Competitiveness and in 2016, was asked to become a standing member of the Washington, D.C.-based Conference of Business Economists, a global group of distinguished economists.

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MÉLISSA GILBERT

Mélissa Gilbert has been Executive Vice President, Finance, Corporate Actuarial and Risk Management at La Capitale since December 2018. She has also played a key role in the La Capitale/SSQ Insurance merger of equals since the beginning. She previously served as chief financial officer and filled strategic positions in service companies. She notably worked in Western Canada.

 

Mélissa Gilbert received the relève d’excellence 2012 award from Réseau HEC, the Arista Jeune cadre du Québec award from the Jeune Chambre de Commerce de Montréal in 2015 and was a finalist in the emerging financial executive category of the FEI Canada Aces of Finance competition in 2017. She is also a certified corporate director (CCD) and a chartered professional accountant (CPA, CA).

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CONSTANTINE HATZIPANAYIS

Constantine Hatzipanayis is a Partner with BDC’s Growth Equity group, based in the Vancouver office.  He has spent most of his 20-year career in acquisitions, financing and hands-on private equity roles in Western Canada. Before joining BDC he worked with VetCare Canada, where he helped the veterinary-network start-up develop corporate structures and build relationships with key industry influencers and stakeholders. Before that, he was with private-equity firm Krystal Growth Partners, working directly with the portfolio management teams to help them implement product and pricing strategies, enhance their systems and organizational structures and invest for growth. While at Krystal, Constantine gained substantial experience in the manufacturing, distribution and consumer products sectors, as well as exposure to the business services and technology sectors.

 

A CFA charterholder and MBA graduate from Simon Fraser University, Constantine is driven by his passion for Canadian business growth and development. In support of Western Canadian businesses, he has spent time on the advisory board of Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters B.C. and continues to participate in its strategic advisory committees.

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ROBERT HOGUE

Robert Hogue is aa member of the Macroeconomic and Regional Analysis Group, with RBC Economics Research.  He is responsible for providing analysis and forecasts for the Canadian housing market and for the provincial economies.  His publications include Housing Trends and Affordability, Provincial Outlook and provincial budget commentaries.  In his functions, he is frequently called to comment on the economy both internally within RBC and externally with clients and the media,

 

Mr. Hogue joined RBC in May 2008 after spending 15 years with another Canadian financial institution as a senior economist specializing in industrial analysis.  At the outset of his career, he spent four years as an economist with Ontario Hydro, where he specialized in industrial and macroeconomic analysis.  Mr. Hogue holds a Master’s degree in economics from Queen’s University and a Bachelor’s degree from Montreal University.

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DR. HOWARD E. JOHNSON

Howard is a Managing Director and Canada Market Leader at Duff & Phelps (one of the world’s largest independent valuation and corporate finance firms). He advises business owners and executives on acquisitions, divestitures, financing and shareholder value matters.  Howard’s previous positions include Chairman of M&A International Inc (an investment banking alliance that provides financial advisory services), Managing Director of Veracap International Inc. (a mid-market investment bank) and Managing Director of Campbell Valuation Partners.( Canada’s longest established and largest independent consultancy specializing in business valuation).  He has also held senior positions in industry and has served on the board of public, private and not-for-profit organizations.

 

Howard is the author of several books on the subjects of business valuation, M&A and corporate finance primarily published by CPA Canada. 

 

Howard has been a member of FEI Canada since 2002.  He is the past President of the Southern Golden Horseshoe Chapter and was a member of the inaugural Board of Directors for CFERF.  Howard was the recipient of the Frank S. Capon award in 2019.

 

Howard is also one of four members of FEI’s Private Company Steering Committee and is Chairing Private Company M&A 

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BRUCE KASMAN

Bruce Kasman is a Managing Director and the Chief Economist for J.P. Morgan. He serves as Global Head of Economic Research, where he is responsible for leading a team of thirty economists worldwide that set the firm’s economic and policy views. Mr. Kasman and his team integrate detailed individual country analysis with a top-down approach that views the global economy as a whole.  J.P.Morgan’s global economics team has consistently received high rankings in investor polls and was ranked #1 in the Institutional Investor global fixed income poll in both 2019 and 2020. Mr. Kasman joined J.P. Morgan in 1994 and was Head of European Economic Research from 1996 to 1999. Prior to J.P. Morgan, he was Senior International Economist at Morgan Stanley. Mr. Kasman started his career at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in the International Research Department. He has a Ph.D. in Economics from Columbia University.

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Shri Kalyanasundaram

Shri Kalyanasundaram is a Director of Cybersecurity Solutions at TELUS, recognized as a leader in Managed Security Services in Canada. Shri currently leads the Product Management, Marketing and Presales functions for TELUS Cybersecurity. Previously, Shri held roles in corporate strategy, business development and market research, at organizations such as Target and Canadian Tire. His career over the past 15 years, has afforded him the opportunity to work and study in three different continents.

 

Shri holds an MBA from University of Western Ontario’s Ivey Business School, a Masters degree in Managerial Economics and Strategy from The London School of Economics, and a Bachelors degree in Economics from Loyola College.

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SUSAN KICHUK PhD

Over the past five years, Susan has grown TTSG from a local 17-person insurance brokerage firm to a national organization of over 100 professionals providing strategic advisory in the areas of health, wealth, and legacy. The team at TTSG collaborates with clients and their advisors to provide insight and innovation solutions to complex estate planning opportunities and challenges. By creating an insurance organization that goes beyond the life of the client, TTSG is well positioned to assist entrepreneurs to effectively transfer their life work and wealth to the next generation.

 

Susan’s talent for building powerful teams and sustainable organizations has been developed over 25 years in senior advisory and management positions in Canada, the United States, and the Americas Region. Prior to her career in the private sector, Susan was a business professor and lecturer at leading universities in Canada and the United States. Susan is an academically published author in the area of optimal teams, and she has been featured as an award-winning speaker at conferences across North America. She holds a Doctorate in Business Administration from McMaster University and a Bachelor of Engineering Science from Western University.

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MARTIN KYLE

Martin Kyle is the Chief Information Security Officer at Payments Canada. He is responsible for the organization’s corporate security program, including both cyber and physical security.

 

Prior to joining Payments Canada in 2017, Martin held a similar role in the cooperative sector of Canadian financial institutions. He also has a deep background in technology development, implementation, and oversight.

 

Martin holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Brigham Young University with additional graduate studies at Simon Fraser University. He is a Senior Member of the Association for Computing Machinery, a Certified Information Systems Security Professional, and Certified Secure Software Lifecycle Professional.

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JESSICA LABRIE

Jessica is a Montreal-based Senior Business Advisor with the BDC’s High Impact Firm Advisory group. She has spent the past 12 years working in private investments and consulting services collaborating with B2B and B2C businesses from a wide range of industries.

 

For most of her career, Jessica has helped senior executives at client and partner companies overcome barriers to growth, formulate as well implement strategic plans.

 

Jessica holds a master’s degree in economics as well as a bachelor’s degree in business, both from Concordia University.

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ROB LAMKA CPA,CA

Rob serves as a Principal for TTSG. He is highly experienced in tax planning for mergers and acquisitions and his expertise lies in tax advisory and transaction development. Rob focuses on bringing innovative wealth optimization solutions to successful entrepreneurs and families.

 

He has 25 years of experience providing advice across Ontario and serving in senior financial roles in both public and private companies. Prior to joining TTSG, Rob was a senior tax partner at KPMG for more than 10 years.

 

Rob has taught taxation and business for the Ontario Institute of Chartered Professional Accountants, The Canadian Institute of Chartered Professional Accountants, the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University. Rob serves on the board of directors of the Kitchener-Waterloo Humane Society. Rob earned a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting and Finance from Wilfred Laurier University.

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LISE LAPIERRE

Après une longue carrière en capital de risque comme directrice associée chez Accès Capital Québec, Mme Lapierre se consacre maintenant à la gouvernance des organisations. Elle a dirigé plusieurs transactions d’investissements dans des entreprises œuvrant dans divers secteurs d’activités. Son expérience l’a amenée à collaborer avec Anges Québec pour appuyer les anges financiers lors d’investissements dans les secteurs manufacturier et services et elle est actuellement membre externe-conseil du Comité de capital de risque et fonds d’investissement d’Investissement Québec.

 

Mme Lapierre est la première femme nommée à la présidence du conseil d’administration de l’Aéroport de Québec où elle a précédemment occupé les postes de vice-présidente du CA et présidente du comité d’audit. De plus, elle est présidente du conseil d’administration de Gestion SOVAR inc. et membre du conseil d’administration et du comité d’audit de Humania Assurance. Par le passé, elle a été membre du conseil d’administration de sociétés privées, membre du comité d’audit interne du ministère du Tourisme Québec, administratrice et présidente du comité de gouvernance et ressources humaines de la Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Québec. Elle a également démarré et présidé le Comité Entrepreneuriat de la Chambre de commerce de Québec et siégé aux conseils d’administration de la YWCA de Québec, de l’Opéra de Québec, de l’Université du Québec à Rimouski et de l’Ordre des CPA du Québec, en plus d’avoir assumé la présidence du Comité des CPA de la région de Québec.

 

Formatrice et communicatrice reconnue, Mme Lapierre est intervenante au Collège des administrateurs de sociétés dans le cadre de la Certification universitaire en gouvernance de sociétés et des formations spécialisées en gouvernance des PME et gouvernance des OBNL. Elle agit également comme formatrice experte avec le Collège des administrateurs auprès de conseils d’administration et de comités du conseil pour des formations corporatives adaptées aux besoins et réalités des organisations.

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STÉPHANE LEFEBVRE

Stéphane Lefebvre oversees the operations and corporate development activities of all
Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group’s businesses, as well as all its corporate support
functions. He recently led the company’s recapitalization process following a shut down of
its operations due to COVID-19 last March and is now in charge of the relaunch of the
Company’s businesses, as well as the establishment and execution of its growth strategy.

 

Boasting 30 years of experience, Stéphane has led special project teams to perform
acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures and various finance projects, including financial
governance. Stéphane Lefebvre was previously Chief Financial Officer at CAE Inc., where
he worked for 20 years. As a CPA, CA, Stéphane began his career at Price Waterhouse,
first working in auditing, then consulting, specifically on merger/acquisition and insolvency
cases.

 

Stéphane is also a member of C2 Montréal’s Board of Directors since 2017.

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TONY MALFARA

Tony is a senior partner within KPMG’s Risk Consulting Services practice in the GTA and is lead on a number of KPMG’s significant risk consulting engagements, which includes internal audit, internal controls, enterprise risk, and Internal Audit Assessments (QARs). Tony has been an active member of the Institute of Internal Auditors, both at the Toronto Chapter and National levels. He has held a number of positions including: member of the Board of Governors for the Toronto Chapter, Chair of the Advocacy and Academic Relations Committee for the Board of IIA Canada. In his capacity on the National Board of the IIA, he is responsible for expanding the academic acceptance of internal audit with the academic community and advocating to key stakeholders on the value of the profession. Tony also was a member of the North American Advocacy Committee for the IIA Global.

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NATHAN MCADAM

Nathan McAdam is a Senior Director of Corporate Financing at BDC based in the Calgary office, covering the Prairies region. With 25 years of experience in business banking, Nathan has been working with some of the top businesses in Western Canada. In his current role with BDC, he focuses on helping larger businesses with their long term financial and consulting needs to start, grow and expand their businesses across Canada and throughout North America.

 

Before joining BDC, he worked as a Small Business Manager in Vancouver with TD Bank where he enjoyed learning about the path to success of many small business entrepreneurs. His career journey continued in commercial banking and cash management in Calgary. His new role and location opened his eyes to the world of oil and gas production, which lead him to new lending opportunities at CIBC commercial banking for 7 years and then National Bank for 3 years. After 17 years working in financial services, he changed gears to support businesses in foreign exchange and hedging at Western Union Business Solution, putting his former cash management skills to work. He finally joined BDC in 2015.

 

Nathan holds two university degrees from Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario and is a successful Chartered Professional Accountant of Alberta. He is a 4 time national achievers winner for Sales and Service for the Entrepreneur.

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STEPHEN MILL

With more than 25 years of progressive experience in all areas of human capital solutions, Stephen Mill brings an unrivaled depth of expertise to his role as Canadian President of Executive Search. Under Stephen’s collaborative, resourceful, and solution-oriented leadership, Toronto-based Robert Half Executive Search is a Canadian market leader in the field of Clevel retained search.

 

Stephen began his career in the human capital industry at Robert Half. He rose to the rank of Senior Regional Vice President, growing multiple lines of business across Canada and the North Eastern US. As the Canadian President of Futurestep, a division of Korn/Ferry, specializing in executive retained search, Stephen successfully launched and staffed offices in Toronto, Montréal, Vancouver and Calgary, increasing the Canadian team from two to 60 staff. As a member of the Canadian Korn/Ferry executive team, Stephen was responsible for the integration of multiple business lines as well as being a member of the global strategic account team.

 

Throughout his lengthy career in the industry, he has completed multiple leadership, communication and competency modelling courses with Harvard Business School, the Richard Ivey School of Business, and Decker Communications. Stephen is actively involved in a number of professional associations, and is often called upon to speak on hiring, recruiting, and retaining senior leadership teams.

 

For the past four years, Stephen has led the nomination committee and is an advisor to the selection committee for Canada’s CFO of the Year.

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SCOTT MILLIGAN

Scott Milligan is Chief Corporate Officer and Executive Vice President. Mr. Milligan is responsible for leading the Company’s transformation efforts, as well as a number of key areas that support the Company’s global growth, including implementation of new finance, HR and Professional Services systems, building the Company’s workplace of the future, sustainability and corporate social responsibility, corporate communications, legal, corporate services, risk and internal audit. Mr. Milligan joined the Company in 2009 as Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Milligan brings to this position many years of senior executive business and finance management experience earned across a number of North American-based organizations. Prior to joining Morneau Shepell, Mr. Milligan held progressively senior assignments at Zarlink Semiconductor, MCI Canada, Pepsi-Cola, Campbell Soup Company and Price Waterhouse. Mr. Milligan serves on the board and is a member of the Audit and Finance Committee of The Learning Partnership. He has an Honours Bachelor of Mathematics degree from the University of Waterloo and is a Chartered Professional Accountant.

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HARLEY MINTZ FCPA, CFP, TEP, CPA

Harley is a Principal at TTSG. With more than 40 years of experience in succession, estate, financial and tax planning, Harley identifies clients’ needs and works to solve their problems and meet their professional and personal targets. He is instrumental in developing innovative strategies to help transform businesses and optimize philanthropic giving. A frequent commentator in Canadian media, Harley is a trusted authority and resource on accounting and tax issues. He lectures on taxation at several international accounting firms as well as York University, and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario. Prior to joining TTSG, Harley managed Mintz and Partners for over three decades. In 2008, the firm was acquired by Deloitte and Harley was appointed Partner and Vice-Chair of Deloitte Canada. He held this position for more than eight years. Harley earned a Bachelor of Commerce and Finance (with distinction) from the University of Toronto.

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MARTIN NOËL

Originally from the south shore of Quebec City and a graduate of Université Laval, Martin Noël started his career as an auditor for Raymond Chabot Martin Paré. After serving as lecturer then substitute professor at Université Laval, he joined Morin Dufresne Cloutier Bédard & Associés, a Quebec City area accounting firm, in June 1996. He then joined the Premier Tech Team in June 1998 as Vice-President, Corporate Development.

 

Martin Noël’s innate capacity to identify business opportunities and risks and translate financial data into real business success soon made him an essential part of Premier Tech’s ability to reach its financial goals. Since he joined the company, more than fifty business acquisitions have been successfully concluded thanks to his global vision and incisive analyses, positioning Premier Tech among Canada’s fastest-growing companies.

 

Premier Tech’s Senior Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer since 2005, Martin Noël works on a daily basis to widen the company’s global footprint in and beyond the 27 countries where it is now present. With a simultaneous focus on preserving the company’s strong foundations, he secures the resources and agility Premier Tech needs to fulfill its ambitions.

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DAN NORTH

Dan North has been with Euler Hermes North America since 1996, using macroeconomic and quantitative analyses to help manage Euler’s risk portfolio of more than $150 billion in annual U.S. trade transactions.

 

As an economist he has appeared on CNBC, Fox Business News, France 24, The Street, and Bloomberg Radio and Television. He has been quoted by Barron’s, Business Week, Paris Le Monde, Tokyo Nikkei, the BBC, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.  After having predicted the 2008/2009 recession and its implications accurately, he was ranked 4th on Bloomberg’s list of the 65 top economic forecasters in 2010.

 

Mr. North holds an MBA from the Wharton School of Business.

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JUSTIN ORFUS
  • Professionally trained MC and Host across Canada. He is a graduate of Humber Radio, Carleton University Communications, Toastmasters International and Second City Comedy Improv
  • He has hosted game shows, conferences, corporate seminars, product launches, music festivals, sporting events and weddings for the past 20 years.
  • Justin has represented some of the most iconic brands in front of audiences including, Air Canada, Samsung, Nike, Coke, Cineplex, NFL Canada and the Toronto Maple Leafs where he consistently performed in front of 20,000 fans!
  • He is a master in engaging with his audiences and uses his outgoing demnor to fire up the crowd with his trademark humor and upbeat tone.
  • Follow him on Instagram @manonthemic or through his website: justinorfus.com
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ALEX POURBAIX

As President & Chief Executive Officer of Cenovus Energy, Alex is responsible for establishing the strategic direction for the company and delivering strong financial, operational and sustainability performance. Alex took on the leadership role in November, 2017. He is also a Director of the company.

 

Prior to joining Cenovus, Alex spent 27 years with TC Energy and its affiliates in a broad range of leadership roles, including Chief Operating Officer, where he was responsible for the company’s commercial activity and overseeing major energy infrastructure projects and operations. He also has experience in corporate strategy, business development, mergers, acquisitions and divestitures, as well as stakeholder relations.

 

Alex currently serves on the boards of Canadian Utilities Limited and the Business Council of Canada and has been a board member at Trican Well Service Ltd. He is Chairman of the Board of Governors at the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP), Board Chair at Mount Royal University, a member of the Business Council of Alberta and previous Board Chair for the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association.

 

Alex is active in the community, having served on the boards of several local charities, including many years as a dedicated volunteer for the United Way.

 

Alex earned a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Law degree from the University of Alberta.

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DAINA PROCTOR

Daina Proctor, recently named as one of Canada’s TOP 20 Women in CyberSecurity, is the Canadian national lead for IBM’s Security Intelligence and Threat Management practice.  In her role she leverages her seasoned delivery experience to enable and evolve businesses with cohesive, transparent and rapid threat management and intelligence programs.  She has spent more than 15+ years leading and growing information security programs, from technology stack through operating models. Through escalating leadership positions with companies such as Nortel and CGI, and now IBM, Daina has grown and built security competencies in the Nordics, the Netherlands, UK, Australia as well as here at home in Canada. As an avid outdoors and sports enthusiast and mom to adult children, Daina balances her time between technology and being outdoors with her family.

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RUBY RAI

As Marsh Canada’s Cyber practice leader, Ruby is charged with ensuring Marsh deliver to its client’s customized solutions powered by actionable insights and analytics. Ruby has over 15 years of insurance experience, which includes managing Cyber & Professional Liability portfolio for a global insurance company and leading cyber broking practice for a Tier 1 brokerage in Canada. She advises clients in assessing their privacy and information security risks and finding the right solutions for risk transfer.

 

She actively participates in public forums to promote the need for identifying and managing cyber risks. Ruby is a certified Information Privacy Professional and holds her CRM designation.

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MICHAEL ROUSSEAU

Michael Rousseau was appointed Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer in October, 2007. In this role, he is responsible for Air Canada’s overall financial strategic direction, including all aspects of financial reporting and planning, investor relations, treasury and controller’s operations, taxation, pension administration and internal audit, as well as procurement and corporate real estate.

 

Michael brings to Air Canada extensive senior executive experience from the consumer business sector. He most recently held executive positions including those of President, and before that Executive Vice-President and CFO with Canada’s largest diversified general merchandise retailer, Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC). While at HBC, he developed a comprehensive investor relations program, introduced an enhanced external and internal financial reporting process and improved the cost-effectiveness of the organization.

 

Prior to Joining HBC in 2001, he held senior executive financial positions at other large, international corporations, including Moore Corporation in Chicago, Silcorp Limited and the UCS Group (a division of Imasco Limited).

 

Michael holds a BBA degree from York University and has been a member of the Ontario Institute of Chartered Accountants since 1983.  He was named Canada’s CFO of the Year™ for 2017 by Financial Executives International Canada (FEI Canada), PwC Canada and Robert Half.

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NANCY RUSSELL

Nancy Russell is the Senior Vice-President, Chief Internal Auditor, Great-West Lifeco. As the Chief Internal Auditor, Nancy leads the independent Global Internal Audit function with the primary objective of assisting the Boards of Directors, through the Audit Committees, in carrying out their corporate governance responsibilities. This is aligned with also assisting management and staff in the achievement of their goals and objectives in a way which is adequately controlled and effectively managed.

 

Nancy started her career with London Life as Manager of Internal Audit in 1999. Other roles she has held since that time include Senior Vice-President/Chief Compliance Officer, Great-West Lifeco; Senior Vice-President of New Business, Individual Insurance for Canada Life; Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer for the former Quadrus Investment Services Ltd (a mutual fund dealer firm and previous subsidiary company of London Life and Great-West Life); Vice-President, Internal Audit, responsible for the audit of the companies’ European and Reinsurance operations; and Leader of New Business, Client Service and Claims in the Individual Life Operations area.

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ERIKA SANDOVAL

Erika Sandoval (she/ella) is part of the HCM Strategic Advisory team at UKG. She brings a strong background in DEI&B, organizational and professional development, and facilitation and consulting. Erika is passionate about helping organizations through strategic and inclusive workplace initiatives to improve and enhance the employee experience. As a multilingual advocate for equity in the workplace, she has helped organizations, people and leaders navigate complexities of intersectional cultural differences in global workplace environments.

 

Having lived and worked in North America, South America, Europe and Asia, Erika has over a decade of experience in providing guidance in cross-cultural complexities impacting organizations while driving business success. She also has experience in helping educational institutions, non-profits and international NGOs elevate their people and the broader community.

 

Erika holds various DEI&B and training certificates; she received an MSc in Human Rights Law from the University of Birmingham in the U.K. and has an MA and BA.

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JEFF SHICKELE

Jeff is Vice President, Finance and Technology at Amacon.  Amacon is a privately owned large Vancouver based real estate developer and investor with activity in Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto and Denver.  Jeff is responsible for Treasury, Accounting, Tax, Estate Planning and Technology.

 

Jeff has been extensively involved with FEI Canada for many years and is currently Chair of the Board of Directors of FEI. He has held a variety of positions within FEI including Chair of the Audit& Finance Committee, President of the Vancouver Chapter, Vice Chair, Treasury & Capital Markets and the Whistler Conference 2017 Chair.

 

Jeff is also one of four members of FEI’s Private Company Steering Committee and is Chairing Multi-Generation Family Businesses

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TAMMY TOWILL

Tammy is a partner in the Cordura Group (corduragroup.com) and faculty with Capilano University, providing business advisory services and related education and training programs to organizations and communities seeking growth or change.  For over 25 years, Tammy has worked with private and public sector companies throughout North America and Europe, providing education, training and facilitating in the areas of leadership, strategy, business planning and curriculum development and implementation.  She has served on and worked with several boards in Canada and the US.

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AMANDA VELLA

Amanda is Senior Director, Business Advisory and Transition Consultant with ATB Financial.  Amanda is focused on providing tailored advice to clients on business valuation, value acceleration, effective exit strategies and long-term financial preparation for a business transaction.

 

Amanda has over 17 years of experience in finance leadership, business advisory, strategic and financial planning, corporate finance and business valuations. Amanda is a Chartered Accountant, Chartered Business Valuator, Certified Exit Planning Advisor and a Certified High Performance Coach.

 

Amanda is actively involved in the community serving as President of the Edmonton Chapter of FEI, Vice Chair of the FEI Private Company – Entrepreneur Succession – Thought Leadership Group, the Board of Directors of the CBV Institute and the Board of Directors of the Lung Association of Alberta and NWT. In 2014, Avenue Magazine recognized Amanda as being one of Edmonton’s Top 40 Under 40.

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KEITH WADDELL

Keith Waddell became CEO of Robert Half in December 2019 after serving as its CFO since 1986. He has overseen significant investments in mobile, cloud and advanced artificial intelligence technologies that are a key part of an ongoing digital transformation. When the pandemic hit, these technology investments allowed Robert Half to quickly transition its entire workforce to remote work in within days and maintain full operations while physical locations were forced to close. In June 2020, Waddell signed the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion pledge; he has also been active with the Boys and Girls Club of the Coastside in Half Moon Bay, California, for many years.

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JO MARK ZUREL

Jo Mark Zurel is a Corporate Director and private investor. From 1998 to 2006, Jo Mark was Senior Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer of CHC Helicopter Corporation, helping to build it into the world’s largest helicopter operating company, primarily through M&A. He is on several corporate boards, including Fortis Inc. (HR Committee Chair), Major Drilling (HR Committee Chair), the CPP Investment Board (Risk Committee Chair), and Highland Copper (Audit Committee Chair).

 

Jo Mark is active in his community. His current and recent not-for-profit activities include Chair of the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council, Chair of the St. John’s Board of Trade, Chair of JA of Newfoundland and Labrador, Chair of a Canadian Red Cross capital campaign, the board of the Institute of Corporate Directors.

 

Jo Mark was named to Canada’s Top 40 under 40, has been granted the ICD.D from the ICD, is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Newfoundland and Labrador and was named Newfoundland’s 2015 Outstanding Philanthropist by the Association of Fundraising Professionals.