Summit Speakers

By order of presentation.

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Nokomis Martina Osawamick

Martina Osawamick an Anishinaabe kwe, Ojibwe/Odawa from Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory is known as Oginii Kwe (Rose Woman) and is of the amik/beaver Clan, makwa/bear and ma’iingan/wolf as her helpers and is second level of the Midewiwin lodge.

 

She is a proud “Nokomis” of twelve grandchildren and a great grandmother to two. One of Martina’s priorities has always been her passion for preserving, maintaining and revitalizing the Anishinaabemowin language. She is the (Elder) Nokomis at Cambrian College and Laurentian University in Sudbury, working part time. 

 
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Gail Strachan

 

An Executive member of Accenture’s T&O/Human Potential practice, Gail is a culture strategist designing workplaces around talent management and enterprise change management. Gail has advised clients in the public and private sector around the workforce of the future, inclusion, equity and equality and behavioural change as it meets technology transformation.

 

Her combined work experience leverages 20+ years across corporate law and marketing communications as well as community work in social justice. As such Gail holds the communications profession to the highest standard around the use of the spoken and written word. As an orator, Gail continues to engage audiences from not-for-profit to Corporate Canada around BIPoC equity in the workplace. 

 

Gail has a Masters degree in Communications Management from McMaster University and holds various leadership roles in the communications space in Canada including co-Founder and co-chair of the Antiracism in PR summit, and co-Founder & committee chair of The Ubora Network.

 
 
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Rob Ireland

 

With more than 27 years of relevant experience, Rob is the Senior Vice-President of Hill + Knowlton Strategies. He offers a uniquely wide and business-centric perspective to his engagements. Rob is known for his ability to delve into complex issues and bring uncommon insight and perspective. Drawing on his expertise within corporate advisory, marketing, sales and marketing communications functions, Rob provides sophisticated and integrated support to clients in ways that directly drive business results. He is also responsible for being the firm of record for the efforts of the Black North Initiative (BNI).

 
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Wes Hall, ICD.D.

 

As the Executive Chairman of KSS Group of Companies, Wes has over 20 years of experience in corporate governance and shareholder communications. He has established himself as the preeminent leader in shareholder advisory services and contested investor solutions. Globe and Mail has called him one of the nation's "most influential powerbrokers" and Canadian Business magazine named him one of the "most powerful business people" in 2016. Among his many successes, Wes founded Kingsdale Advisors in 2003 and has led billion-dollar mergers across the globe. A director and board member for many organizations in Canada, Wes was a founding board member for the Canadian Society of Corporate Secretaries (CSCS) and most recently, the founder of the Black North Initiatives.

 
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Dahabo Ahmed-Omer

 

Dahabo is an accomplished policy advisor, human rights advocate, and the inaugural Executive Director of the Black North Initiative. Her extensive experience in performance measurement, policy development and employment equity and diversity has resulted in the building of strategic alliances and the building of diverse teams. The recipient of notable awards, Dahabo has been recognized for her work with the Hope Academy, the Federal Public Service, the Ottawa Community and was recently named the top 100 under 40 Most Influential Person of African descent in support of United Nationals decade.

Dahabo stands as a strong role model particularly to members of all Black communities and has
played a transformative role in improving the quality of life of Canadians of African descent and the
community at large.

 
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Carmella Glover

Carmella Glover is President of the Diversity Action Alliance (DAA) and the Director of DE&I at Page. In her Page role, she provides operational and strategic direction for member and staff DE&I initiatives. Before she transitioned to Page, Carmella was the first-ever Executive Director of the PRSA Foundation. 


Carmella brings over ten years of corporate experience from notable beauty brands in the US where she was accountable for the successful launch of luxury skincare products netting $100+ million in new sales annually. Prior to transitioning into diversity communications Carmella was a subject matter expert in supply chain and manufacturing operations. 


In May of 2019, Glover was the recipient of the Logos Institute Rising Leader Award and a keynote speaker at the New York University School of Professional Studies May 2019 commencement. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from New Jersey Institute of Technology and a Master of Science degree in Public Relations and Corporate Communications from New York University. Carmella is an active member of Newark’s Beta Alpha Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, wherein she exercises her zeal for philanthropy. She resides in North Jersey with her husband and daughter.

 
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Katrina Ingram

Katrina is Founder and CEO of Ethically Aligned AI, a social enterprise that is focused on helping organizations build better AI. She recently completed an MA in communications and technology at the University of Alberta with a research focus on artificial intelligence and ethics. Her prior work experience spans media, healthcare, education and the cannabis sector.

Katrina is host of AI4Society Dialogues, a podcast that explores the work of leading AI researchers in Alberta. Details of her work can be found on her website.

 
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Jesse Lipscombe

 

Jesse Lipscombe is an actor, producer, entrepreneur and activist based in Edmonton, Alberta. Born and raised in St. Albert, Jesse started his acting career at age 14 alongside Sidney Poitier in the Calgary-shot film Children of the Dust. At 18, he received a full track-and-field scholarship to Martin Luther King Jr.’s alma mater, Morehouse College, in Atlanta, Georgia. Jesse went on to win multiple national high-jump championships in both Canada and the U.S., and was ranked 6th in the world in his sport.

 

In 2018, Jesse was the recipient of the Obsidian Award for Top Business Leader in Western Canada, and was named Community Man of the Year by Diversity Magazine. Through it all, Jesse’s top priority has been giving back to his community, which he’s done through multiple annual fundraisers and partnerships with Edmonton charities such as WIN House and iHuman. In September 2017, Jesse and his wife Julia launched the #MakeItAwkward campaign to combat racism, misogyny, homophobia and hatred of all kinds. Jesse and Julia are parents to three young boys.

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Daniel Tisch

Daniel Tisch is the CEO and owner of one of Canada's largest and fastest-growing communications consulting firms, with more than 125 full-time employees in eight North American cities. Specialties include corporate communications, financial communications, digital consumer marketing, public affairs, executive coaching, public engagement and reputation management.

 

Fellow of the Canadian Public Relations Society. Argyle was named Global Mid-Sized Agency of the Year in 2017 and 2018 by the International Association of Business Communicators; one of Canada's Top Growing Companies in 2019 and 2020 by the Globe & Mail; and Canadian Agency of the Year in 2020 by PRovoke Media, the leading analyst covering the global PR industry. 

 
 
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Rohini Mukherji

 

Rohini is a seasoned integrated communications expert and Vice President, Integrated Communications with APEX Public Relations. With 15 years of experience in Canada and a short stint in Beijing, China, Rohini has a demonstrated track record of leading smart, compelling and award-winning 360 campaigns for clients in the B2B and B2C space. She has worked across sectors including financial services, real estate, health care, lifestyle and packaged goods. She is fuelled by her desire to devise strategic campaigns for her clients that are just as successful as they are fun to execute as a team.

She is co-host of a new podcast ABCDEI, exploring topics related to diversity, equity and inclusion.

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Tiéoulé Traoré

Tiéoulé is a government relations director based out of NATIONAL’s Ottawa office. For close to a decade, he has cultivated and nurtured a network of stakeholders, public officials and political staffers that can be enlisted to the benefit of actors eager to improve their reach in the nation’s capital.

Prior to joining NATIONAL in 2019, Tiéoulé spent five years working for various national industry associations, dealing with files such as telecommunications (with the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association) and intellectual property (with the Intellectual Property Institute of Canada). Tiéoulé also had a brief stint on Parliament Hill (2012–2014), where he worked for a Member of Parliament.

Tiéoulé holds a Master’s degree from Quebec City’s Université Laval (Political Science). A Canadian citizen since 2016, Tiéoulé also holds dual French/Malian citizenships. He currently sits on the Board of the Trade Facilitation Office of Canada (TFO Canada)

 
 
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Celina Caesar-Chavannes

Celina Caesar-Chavannes is a business consultant, coach and international speaker. She currently serves as the Sr. Advisor, EDI Initiatives and Adjunct Lecturer at Queen’s University. She recently published “Can You Hear Me Now?” from Penguin Random House Canada sharing a bit of life as former Member of Parliament for Whitby, Parliamentary Secretary to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Parliamentary Secretary for International Development. During her term as a Member of Parliament, Celina was awarded several distinctions including a feature in the April 2018 edition of O (Oprah Winfrey) Magazine entitled, “What would you stand up for?" and named Chatelaine Magazine’s Woman of the Year (2019). She has a Bachelor of Science, an MBA in Healthcare Management and an Executive MBA from the Rotman School of Management.

Celina can be followed on all social media platforms @iamcelinacc.

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Terry Flynn 

Dr. Terry Flynn is one of Canada’s leading public relations/communications management researchers. Following a 20-year professional communications consulting career, Terry joined the faculty of McMaster University after completing his Ph.D. studies at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. During his consulting career, he built an international practice specializing in crisis and risk communications and public/community engagement working with such organizations as the Town of Walkerton Ontario to name a few.

 

He is currently a member of a number of professional and academic organizations not limited to the Canadian Public Relations Society (President 2009-10), the Institute for Public Relations and the Arthur W. Page Society (holding Board of Trustee position in both). In 2015, Terry was given the prestigious Philip A. Novikoff Award by the CPRS, for superior contributions to the advancement of the profession in Canada and throughout the world and was named the CPRS Diamond Jubilee “Mentor of the Year" in 2018. In July 2019 he was re-appointed as the Director of the McMaster-Syracuse University Master of Communications Management degree program, a position he first held from 2004-2011.

 
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Sara Goldvine

Sara Goldvine, MCM + APR, is Vice President Communications with BC Housing. She has a track record of effecting meaningful change in purpose-driven organizations in the public, non-profit, and private sectors, including through leadership roles with Coast Capital Savings, TVO, Toronto Community Housing, CAMH, and the B.C. Legislature. Outside of work, she serves on the Board of Governors for the Business Council of BC, the Board of Directors for the Cedar Cottage Food Network Society, and is Co-Founder of the National Summit on Anti-Racism in Public Relations and Communications Management. 

 
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Sharlyn Carrington

Director & Founder of Content Strong Communications, Sharlyn is an award-winning creative communications strategist.

 

She has 12+ years experience in public and private sectors, developing integrated PR and marketing campaigns, engaging key audiences, and advising executives political leaders and business owners on how to build and maintain their reputation and brands.

 

Her public sector work led her to provide communications advice to over 12 ministers, two premiers, and develop campaigns and protocols for programs that supported underrepresented and vulnerable populations.

 

As both a diversity advocate and speaker, Sharlyn holds a master’s in communications management from McMaster University, and is also the co-founder & committee chair of The Ubora Network.

 
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Sarah Thomas

Sarah is an influential Indigenous woman from the Tsleil-Waututh Nation who is paving the way for her people by connecting traditional teachings with the tools gained from her educational journey to advance priorities for the betterment of the future generations. Sarah worked for her own Nation for over a decade where she created a Communications department from the ground up while earning her Bachelor of Communications Degree from Capilano University. Her most recent educational accomplishment was earning her MBA with a special focus on Indigenous Business and Leadership from Simon Fraser University.

 

Sarah holds a number of leadership roles in the community, including on the board of CPRS Vancouver as the Director of Communications, the CPRS National Task force for EDIB, and the MCM National working group for EDIB.  She has an impressive CV spanning multiple organizations, including most recently with the Clear Seas Centre for Responsible Marine Shipping, where she is connecting Indigenous and western knowledge into her learning and work.

 
 
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Jessica Dumas

Jessica is the President of Jessica Dumas Coaching and Training, She is a professional certified coach who specializes in speaker coaching and business coaching, helping individuals speak with clarity and confidence. She is an energetic and motivated professional who quickly gains the trust of her audience with her warm, engaging personality and professional style.

Recognized for her professional expertise through nomination, Jessica is a recipient of many awards across Canada and continues to sit on numerous committees and boards at the executive level. She is a powerful role model and advocate for social justice, leading others to overcome challenges by developing personal strengths, vision and self-confidence.

 

You can connect with Jessica directly on instagram @jessicadumas01.

 
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Stacey Jones

An award-winning corporate communications leader with more than 25 years of experience, Stacey Jones heads Accenture's global corporate communications function. She leads a range of initiatives that touch and engage all of the company's stakeholders, positioning Accenture as one of the world's most innovative companies, business partner of choice and a top employer. 

Stacey currently represents Accenture at Arthur W. Page Society, serves as chair of the board of directors of the Institute of Public Relations, works for equality as a member of PRSA's Diversity Action Alliance Advisory Council, and is a member of Sustainability 50.

A regular speaker at industry events, Stacey is a graduate of Kenyon College in Ohio. She lives in the New York City area with her husband and two sons enjoying tennis, family hikes, museums and theatre.

 
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Kristy Payne

Kristy is the Chief Operations Officer at Hill + Knowlton Strategies and General Manager of the Toronto office where she leads Canada's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) efforts. She is also a part of the Global Council for DEI and is committed to building a workplace culture where every person can thrive. Kristy has over 20 years of experience across multiple sectors creating real impact through communications.

Kristy has trailblazed DEI initiatives to move social equity forward across her many years of experience in the public and private sector. She holds an MBA (International Business and Marketing) from Queen's University, and Undergraduate degree from the University of Alberta, a French language certificate from Laval, and is completing a Master's Certificate in Organizational Development.

  

 
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Mark Stewart

Mark John Stewart is Managing Director of diversified management consultancy Wentworth Strategy Group and an Instructor in Strategic Management with the McMaster-Syracuse Master of Communications Management program. Mark John is an award winning entrepreneur, nonprofit advisor, and public speaker, serving a global client base. His extensive governance and advisory experience includes leadership roles with Empowerment Squared, the Bay Area Health Trust, and the Disability Justice Network of Ontario.

 
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Jefferson Darrell

Jefferson Darrell is an accomplished marketing communications and change
management professional
with more than 17 years of brand strategy expertise.
In the DEI space, Jefferson was instrumental in the creation of the Diversity Inclusion
Anti-Racism change in a variety of public and private spaces.

 

Jefferson has a Bachelor of Applied Science Degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Waterloo, a Public Relations Honours Certificate from Humber College, and is a change management, leadership and inclusion graduate from Centennial College and the Canadian Centre for Diversity & Inclusion (CCDI) where he is completing the Canadian Certified Inclusion Professional (CCIP™) designation.

 
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Leo Nupolu Johnson

Leo Nupolu Johnson is an experienced non-profit executive, human rights specialist, and public speaker. As the founder and Executive Director of global charitable organization Empowerment Squared, he has assisted over 2000 newcomer youth and families with settling in Canada and is opening the groundbreaking Liberian Learning Center, which will house the first and only public library in the post-war Liberia. Leo is a United Nations Fellow for the International Decade for People of African Descent and is globally renowned for his leadership accomplishments.