ELSCD 2018 Speakers

You are embarking on what will be a transformative experience, learning and engaging with people from outside your daily lives, away from distractions.

Embrace this opportunity, think and reflect on these issues, ask hard questions and hear different answers. It is a great privilege to have this kind of opportunity to increase your knowledge and skills and take that back to your workplace, your family and friends and your community.

Enjoy it, build relationships with each other and stay connected, share your stories with each other, ask for ideas and support from each other as you do your part to create a better world.

Cheryl Brooks Orientation Facilitator, PRESIDENT, INDIGENUITY CONSULTING GROUP & Alumni CSC 1986


Ben leads the Canada Region for the Buildings & Infrastructure Americas Business Unit. Formerly, Ben was the Canadian Regional Managing Director for CH2M leading a team of 4,000 people across Canada and managing annual revenues of $1 billion. Prior to this role, Ben served as regional business group manager for CH2M's water business in Canada, as well as other leadership roles in CH2M's energy and industrial markets.

Before joining CH2M, Ben served in various program- and project-management posts with Suncor Energy and Imperial Oil. Ben was recently named one of Canada's Top 40 Leaders Under 40, which is a country-wide awards program that identifies outstanding young achievers in Canadian business, visionaries and innovators changing the way things are done. Ben B.S., Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Manitoba. Ben is a Caribbean Canadian Emerging Leaders' Dialogues 2011 alum.


Paula is of Hesquiaht and Squamish Nation descent, born and raised in the Nuu-chah-nulth territory on Vancouver Island. She has worked in leadership roles in the tourism industry for 20+ years. She has worked for the Indigenous Tourism Association of BC for the past 17 years and has been part of the industry's growth and success by driving results with strategies and marketing that work. Her extensive business development experience includes business planning, market research and market plans for Indigenous communities and businesses in every corner of the province.

She sat on the steering committee for the groundbreaking Blueprint Strategy for Aboriginal tourism in British Columbia. The Blueprint was the catalyst for developing Indigenous tourism in BC, and since its launch in 2006, the industry has grown by over 80 percent. Paula was also involved with the 2010 Aboriginal Tourism Working Group, in partnership with the 2010 Bid Corporation. Paula is an alum of the 2017 Emerging Leaders for Sustainable Community Development program.


A graduate of the University of Toronto (BA) ; University of Ottawa, (LL.B) ; and Cambridge University (M.Phil.), Mark L. Berlin was appointed as a Professor of Practice at ISID in 2012. He brings to McGill a wealth of experience in academia and government practice. For 25 years he was Adjunct Professor in the Law Faculty at the University of Ottawa and authored various articles and co-published "Human Rights in Canada" (Buttersworth). At the same time, he worked for the Department of Justice. Over the course of his career at Justice he had the good fortune to directly serve as legal and policy counsel to 4 Attorneys General; Senior Counsel - Criminal Law Policy; was Senior General Counsel to the Deputy Attorney General; Special Advisor on the Middle East to the Minister of Justice and Director General of International Legal Programmes.

His focus was on legal technical assistance and institutional capacity building in failed and fragile states establishing justice sector reforms in diverse areas such as Sudan, Bangladesh, Ukraine, and the Palestinian Authority to name a few. He was also appointed in 2012 to a 3 year term on the Law Commission of Ontario and continues to serve on various executive committees for both the Ontario and Canadian Bar Association.


Cheryl Brooks, an aboriginal woman from Sts'ailes, a Sto:lo community from the Fraser Valley of British Columbia has been the President of Indigenuity Consulting Group since 2000. Prior to this she worked in aboriginal commu¬nities and at a senior level in the federal government before founding BC Hydro's internationally known Aboriginal Relations Program. She was the only aboriginal woman to achieve Associate Deputy Minister status with the BC Government in its Ministry of Energy and Mines. As an Associate Professor at Royal Roads University she helped develop and taught in the Indigenous/ corporate relations program, she also developed and taught change management and leadership programs in the Justice Institute's Aboriginal Leadership Program.

Cheryl is the Vice Chair of the First Nations Safety Council, a director of the Northwest Indigenous Council and formerly served terms as President of the Provincial and National Association of Native Friendship Centres. Mrs. Brooks has published works including the book. "In Celebration of Our Survival; the First Nations of BC" and "Rights, Risk & Respect, a First Nations Perspective". 


Agnes is an alumna of the 1998 Canadian Duke of Edinburgh Study Conference and the current President of the Emerging Leaders' Dialogues Canada.

Agnes Di Leonardi is an executive who has spent most of her career in the automotive industry assuming increasing levels of leadership responsibility. Agnes has a reputation for adding value to the business and for taking initiative. She was most recently General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and a board director of Mazda Canada Inc. with overall responsibility for legal and corporate governance compliance matters. Prior to joining Mazda Canada Inc., she was with Ford Motor Company of Canada, Limited where she held several executive positions including Vice President Legal, Ford Credit Canada Limited and Vice President Law, Premier Automotive Group (Aston Martin, Jaguar Land Rover Canada and Volvo Canada).

In June 2018, Agnes was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada in recognition of her leadership in the automotive industry and for her commitment to mentoring and supporting Canadian women leaders through her work with the International Women's Forum of Canada, a global organization with a mission to advance women's leadership.

In 2016, Agnes was recognized as one of Canada's most powerful GCs by The Legal 500 Canada GC Powerlist.

William Good Tseskinakhen AY LELUM - THE GOOD HOUSE OF DESIGN

William Good is from the Hereditary Chief family of the Snuneymuxw First Nation, in Nanaimo, B.C. He is the Master Carver and Cultural Historian responsible for revitalizing the traditional Coast Salish Snuneymuxw art form. He has spent decades researching this almost extinct visual language of the Coast Salish people, and has spent years producing art and teaching it to students, as well as sharing it with the community. In the height of his career, he worked in many media, including hand-pulled limited-edition silk screens, painting, gold and silver jewellery, art restoration, garment manufacturing and carving-plaques, panels, steam bent boxes and totem poles.

In his retirement years, he continues to carve master works and he collaborates with his family to create garment designs for Ay Lelum-The Good House of Design with his daughters, Sophia and Aunalee, and with their mother, artist, Sandra Moorhouse-Good. Throughout this, he has also passed the traditional art form on to his son, accomplished artist and carver, W. Joel Good, and they spend their days carving side by side. William Good was awarded the prestigious City of Nanaimo Culture and Heritage Award, "Honor in Culture" for 2018.


Timothy Hodges joined ISID in 2015 as Professor of Practice focusing on the application of strategic foresight methodologies in global affairs and on the negotiation and implementation of international sustainable development treaties. A principal focus of his research at ISID is understanding how indigenous communities, in both the South and the North, participate in and benefit from the implementing international sustainable development treaties. Currently, he is reviewing the experience of Indigenous Peoples representatives in both negotiating the Nagoya Protocol on genetic resources and traditional knowledge and developing case studies in Indigenous community implementation of the Protocol.

Hodges aims to produce pragmatic results in the form of best practices and lessons learned -- which he hopes will in turn support reconciliation in Canada. Concurrently, Hodges is Adjunct Professor in the School of Liberal Arts and Science at the TransDisciplinary University (TDU) in Bangalore -- where he is developing a course on global sustainable development treaties for TDU's new M.Sc. in Conservation Futures. Hodges is a former career Canadian diplomat and the immediate past President of the Canadian Professional Association of Foreign Service Officers (PAFSO). He brings to ISID over thirty-five years of experience in a wide range of international forums, including within the United Nations System, the G8, World Trade Organization, APEC, OECD, Organization of American States, NAFTA, and the Arctic Council.


Joanne Hughes is an innovative leader of non-profit organizations with twenty years of experience in organizational development, project implementation, revenue diversification and stakeholder partnerships.

As the Executive Director of Emerging Leaders' Dialogues Canada, she is providing executive direction in the areas of donor stewardship, partnership development, brand and marketing capitalization, and in the augmentation of the alumni program. Joanne is also a Director on the Association of Emerging Leaders' Dialogues.

Prior to ELD Canada, Joanne managed the operational requirements of The Commonwealth Association for Public Administration and Management, and liaised between foreign national ministries, the private sector, civil service organizations and donor agencies, in the planning and implementation of projects on public administration across the Commonwealth. She is also well known in Ottawa for being the creator and Producer of the Ottawa Lumière Festival, which was voted one of the summer's best festivals by the National Post.


Grand Chief Edward John is a Hereditary Chief of Tl'azt'en Nation located in Northern BC.
Chief John was called to the BC Bar in 1980. He holds a B.A. from the University of Victoria, an LL.B from the University of British Columbia. As well, he holds Honorary Doctor of Laws degrees from the University of Northern British Columbia and the University of Victoria.

Chief John has served in many leadership roles at the local, provincial, national and international levels. Chief John is currently serving his eleventh consecutive term (June 2016 June 2019) as an elected leader on the First Nations Summit Political Executive. He is a former Expert Member of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (January 2011 December 2016) and was involved in the development of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in September 2007.

A fluent speaker of Carrier and one of the few people considered eloquent public speakers in Carrier, John was the founding President of the Yinka Dene Language Institute. He was also involved in establishing the University of Northern British Columbia. In 2000, he served the provincial cabinet as Minister for Children and Families.

Chief John continues to actively engage with all levels of government, as well as community groups and organizations, to advocate for the full recognition and implementation of the Declaration.


Prof. Sonia Laszlo is Associate Professor of Economics and Director of the Institute for the Study of International Development.

Her research expertise covers many aspects of applied microeconomic analysis in economic development. Specifically, she is currently working in two broad research areas: decision-making under uncertainty (namely concerning technology adoption among subsistence farmers) and the micro-economic effects of social policies and conditions (in the area of education, health and labour markets), with a focus on women. Prof. Laszlo has conducted her research in Peru, Kenya and in the Caribbean, using laboratory experiments, surveys or randomized controlled trials.
She is also a member of the Centre Interuniversitaire de Recherche en Organizations (CIRANO) and the Grupo de Analysis para el Desarrollo (GRADE). In 2005 she co-founded and has since been an executive member of the Canadian Development Economics Study Group (CDESG), which groups both academic and policy development economists in Canada.


Dr. Nilson is the President and Vice-Chancellor of Vancouver Island University. He has extensive teaching and administrative experience at undergraduate and graduate levels in Universities across Canada and the United States and developed an active research program in physical activity, population health and community development. He advo¬cates for excellence in teaching and scholarship.

Dr. Nilson has been actively engaged in working with communities and recognizes the important role of the university in the economic and social prosperity of the region it serves. His active support for building capacity in aboriginal communities through access to Education has been evidenced throughout his career.


Chris Roberts, a member of the We Wai Kum First Nation, is the Regional Economic Development Coordinator for the Nanwakolas Council and has been working with First Nation communities to explore economic development aspirations and training needs. He has assisted the communities to acquire funding for community assessment work, labour market analysis and job/training initiatives. Chris received a Bachelor's Degree in Economics with a minor in Indigenous Studies from the University of Victoria. He entered the workforce as an Aboriginal Youth Intern with the Province of BC's Ministry of Technology, Trade, and Economic Development, working with their Aboriginal Economic Development Team.


Wendy Simms has a B.Sc. (Ecology), M.Sc. (Toxicology), and recently completed her Doctorate degree in Education (Learning Sciences), with a focus on sustainability education. Her research explored environmental identity development and the role of reflection in connecting learning experiences to sustainability thinking and stewardship. Her dissertation was just voted as a finalist for the best science education dissertation in Canada. Wendy has been a faculty member at Vancouver Island University for eighteen years. She crosses disciplinary boundaries by teaching a wide variety of undergraduate and graduate courses in the Faculties of Education, Science and Technology, Management, and Social Sciences.

She is passionate about supporting all students' awareness of their own identity and worldview and is committed to weaving Indigenous Worldviews into the curriculum. Wendy contributes extensively to community outreach educational initiatives, as she is a longtime volunteer for Science World's Scientists in the Schools program and is a Board Member for the Nanaimo Science and Sustainability Society.


Dr. Stuart has dedicated her career to working in higher education. She has been with VIU since 2011, first as Dean of the Faculty of Health and Human Services, then as Associate Vice-President, Academic in 2016, and now as Interim Provost and Vice-President, Academic. Previously, she held academic appointments at MacEwan University, the University of Victoria and at Ryerson University. She holds an extensive background in human services, with particular interest in the concerns and challenges of young people and Indigenous peoples; and has maintained an agenda focused on applied, community-engaged research which enhances service quality and the personal, relational approach to change.

Carol has taught graduate and undergraduate students in a variety of flexible post-secondary educational delivery models including community-based delivery in Northern Alberta and Manitoba with Indigenous students. She is the author of 2 foundational texts in Child and Youth Care and has made significant contributions to professional certification and educational accreditation in the field of Child and Youth Care.

She holds degrees from Queen's University (B.P.H.E. Physical and Health Education and B.A. Psychology); the University of Alberta (M.Ed. Counselling Psychology); and the University of Victoria (Ph.D. in Psychological Foundations).


Eliane Ubalijoro, PhD, is the founder and executive director of C.L.E.A.R. International Development Inc., a consulting group harnessing global networks for sustainable systems development. She is a professor of practice for public and private sector partnerships at McGill University's Institute for the Study of International Development, where her research interests focus on innovation and sustainable development for prosperity creation.

Eliane teaches and advises in Leadership programs to help equip executives in international development with tools that support inner and outer sustainable transformation towards global prosperity. She was a facilitator in the International Health Leadership Development Programme (IHLDP) commissioned by the Kenya Red Cross and the International HIV/AIDS Alliance offered by Lancaster University's Management School. She teaches leadership in the International Parliamentary Executive Education program run by McGill University (in English) and by Universite Laval (in French) in conjunction with the World Bank Institute.

She also recently took part in several panels at the 2018 Next Einstein Forum Global gathering and the Gender Summit 14 Climate Change through the Gender Lens: Focus on Africa.