The Intengine Global Change Foundation will host young sustainability leaders and our growing roster of established industry-wide professionals, for the first annual Sustainability Leadership Congress.
The mission of the Intengine Global Change Foundation is to facilitate the transition to a more sustainable economy through the advancement of knowledge and awareness that aids in the generation of policies and practices, and their implementation.
The leaders of today and the changemakers of tomorrow are coming together as The Sustainability Leadership Congress on June 8 - 9, 2019 at The Fairmont Pacific Rim in Vancouver, BC, Canada to discuss some of the largest challenges and opportunities facing our future. By broadening the perspective of sustainability and fostering well-rounded discussions, we will bring awareness to some of the most impactful global industries. The Foundation is committed to educating and empowering future leaders with the knowledge, tools, and emotional awareness required to fulfill this mission, while Intengine bridges the gap between intention and action. The Sustainability Leadership Congress will help bridge the gap between shared social and environmental objectives, and the means and knowledge required to achieve their fulfillment.
Our roster of established industry experts is constantly being updated to include speakers who will be on stage as part of a panel discussing industry-wide matters, or individually, to present expertise around a specific topic.
Through surveying, we have identified the top industries and
issues of interest to the attendees, and will present the top
representatives in each relevant sector. They include water
and ocean conservation, climate change, clean energy, zero
waste, food & agriculture, ethics of sustainability,and the
role of government in sustainable procurement.
In alignment with the mission of the Intengine Global Change Foundation, this day will bridge together intention with practice. Millennials will learn from people who are on the frontlines in the above sectors and dealing with social and environmental issues in corporate or government roles. We intend to prepare the attendees with increased understanding of effective methods of pragmatic implementation, and empower their energy and enthusiasm for actionable sustainability.
Effective implementation of sustainability principles in business demands emotionally intelligent leadership. This day will support the individuals with personal tools that enhance their ability to be ethically-aligned, compassionate leaders and influencers.
Bea Johnson and her family produce a mere pint of trash per year since 2008. Dubbed "The Mother of Zero Waste lifestyle movement" by CNN, Bea has been featured on TV shows and in publications all over the world. She shatters misconceptions, proving that zero waste can not only be stylish, but also lead to significant health benefits, and time and money savings. With her simple 5R methodology and blog turned bestselling book (Zero Waste Home, translated in 26 languages, #1 on Amazon waste cat.), Bea initiated a global movement. She has inspired hundreds of thousands of people to adopt waste-free living, open unpackaged shops, conceive reusable products, and launch organizations. Leading spokesperson for the zero waste lifestyle, she has completed 18 international speaking tours and given English, French, and Spanish talks in 60+ countries on 6 continents. Her clients include Google, Amazon, Starbucks, TEDx, the European Parliament and the United Nations. She is a Grand Prize winner of The Green Awards and the founder of Bulk Finder, a web-based app with 46K+ bulk locations in 160+ countries. She is a French native who currently lives in Mill Valley, California.
Andrea holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration, specializing in Canadian Public Policy. Having been with the Government for almost 20 years, Andrea has extensive experience in federal, provincial and territorial government relations; negotiating and managing contracts, agreements and MOUs; and designing and implementing new programs in partnership with other departments. Andrea is currently an Executive Director in the Strategic Policy Sector at Public Services and Procurement Canada where she is responsible for strategic policy planning with a focus on procurement modernization, including leveraging federal buying power to achieve socio-economic goals.
Just over a year ago, Kim Buksa became City of Vancouver’s Sustainable and Ethical Procurement (SEP) Manager within Supply Chain Management for the purpose of introducing and implementing Social Procurement while updating and enhancing existing sustainable efforts & practices. These “2.0 updates”, looking both at what is purchased as well as from who purchased from, are currently being operationalized across the City.
Her recent past work experience includes working as a Strategic Partnership Manager for the Canada 150 Federal Secretariat successfully initiating and implementing over 30+ projects in a very short and tight timeframe. Moreover, she supported the social economy as the lead for Enterprising Non-Profits (ENP), a province wide, multi-funder program that supported business and revenue development in community, social and non-profit organizations. Through this experience, Kim managed the grant program, interacted and partnered with hundreds of organizations while stewarding dozens of corporations and communities to identify opportunities for sustainable procurement and community benefit agreements.
Kim holds a Bachelor in Commerce from the University of Victoria and a Masters of International Relations from Alliant International University. She is a highly experienced manager with a track record leading, developing and implementing both programs and projects, working with and for all levels of government, including Indigenous entities and across various sectors, including telecommunications, education and health care. That strong business background is well rounded with great communication and public relations skills which has proven to be an asset for the development and implementation of her current role at the City of Vancouver.
Sarah is a Partner in PwC’s Risk Assurance group. She is qualified as a Chartered Accountant in both Canada and the UK, and has over 20 years of experience working closely with many organizations in developing and implementing third party reporting standards on business practices, both financial and non-financial, including many sustainability indicators. Sarah has specific experience assuring against GRI standards, GHG emissions verification, client-specific performance indicators, Conflict Free Gold Standards, International Council for Mining and Metals principles, Towards Sustainable Mining Protocols, ISO standards as well as BC Recycling Regulations.
Sarah is part of PwC’s Global Reporting and Assurance Working Group, which shares best practices and experience from across the network to streamline PwC’s approaches to sustainability report assurance, as well as gathering insights from our global practice to share here in Canada.
Sarah is also very passionate about sustainability and spent many years leading PwC Vancouver’s sustainability initiatives.
A physicist specializing in black holes and the early universe, Amita Kuttner is the Green Party of Canada's Critic for Science and Innovation Policy, and an MP candidate for the 2019 federal election.
Amita founded the Canadian chapter of Scientists4Future, providing an open letter for Canadian scientists and scholars to sign in support of the Youth Climate Strike / Fridays for Future movements, and is co-founder of the UC Santa Cruz chapter of 314 Action, an advocacy group that works to get scientists into elected positions to enact evidence-based policy. Amita's primary areas of concern are preparing communities for the effects of climate-induced natural disasters, and ensuring that Canada has a comprehensive plan for dealing with advancements in artificial intelligence and other emerging technologies.
As a local activist, Amita co-hosts monthly public events geared towards a self-sufficient and environmentally sustainable lifestyle, in partnership with small businesses and social groups in the Vancouver area.
Brendan is a marketing communications professional with more than a decade’s experience in journalism, communications, public relations, government relations and digital marketing. He currently manages communications for the David Suzuki Foundation – one of Canada’s most trusted and influential national, bilingual environmental non-profit organizations.
Before joining the David Suzuki Foundation, Brendan was a senior practitioner and account lead with New Brunswick’s leading digital marketing agency, Revolution Strategy, where he conceptualized and implemented fully integrated marketing campaigns for dozens of non-profit, governmental and private sector clients. Before that, he was director of marketing and communications for Volunteer Canada – the voice of Canada’s voluntary sector – and before that, communications manager for the Information Technology Association of Canada, a non-profit industry association representing Canadian ICT companies of all types of sizes.
Brendan initially studied journalism at St. Thomas University on the east coast, and went on to work for the CBC as a radio and television reporter. He has also completed a master’s degree in popular music and media studies from the University of Western Ontario.
Brendan loves to communicate with purpose – through the written word, orally, musically and otherwise. He is committed to leaving the world better than he found it, by serving social justice organizations and causes he believes in.
Brendan lives in Vancouver. He enjoys playing the guitar, surfing and paddle boarding, hiking, biking, yoga and just about anything else that gets him out into nature.
Rebecca has worked in fashion sustainability for over 10 years, starting her career at a FTSE 50 British luxury fashion brand in London and now leading Aritzia’s Sustainability Strategy. As a labour and human rights supply chain specialist, Rebecca has travelled extensively collaborating with factories to promote better work and community resilience.
Rebecca has led diverse and impactful supply chain programs working directly with communities and specialist civil society experts. Key achievements include delivering greater access to health education for female factory workers in India, developing community resilience programs in Mongolia for nomadic cashmere producing communities, and uplifting working conditions of the highly skilled embroidery artisans of Mumbai.
As Director of Sustainability at Aritzia, Rebecca focuses on human rights and the environmental performance of both its own operations and its supply chain. Through a full-scope materiality and environmental lifecycle assessment she has led the development of an ambitious sustainability strategy currently underway.
Peter van Stolk is the CEO of Sustainable Produce Urban Delivery or SPUD.ca TM, and Food-X Urban Delivery Inc. As founder of Jones Soda Company in 1997, van Stolk served as CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors until 2007.
Sustainable Produce Urban Delivery Inc. has expanded into one of the largest online grocery companies in Canada, employing over 700 delivering fresh, local, organic produce and groceries. SPUD’s goal is to use its connection to local and organic food to help improve the places where we live and work. From this vision, Be Fresh Local Market was proudly cultivated by SPUD, with the first of five stores opening in Vancouver’s Kitsilano neighbourhood in 2015. In 2017, Blush Lane Organic Market joined the SPUD family supporting Edmonton and Calgary across five locations. van Stolk believes: “Food will have the greatest impact on our generation. How we think about food, how we buy food, and how we consume food will change, and we are excited to be a part of this transformation.” Food-X Urban Delivery Inc. is a food delivery platform that allows multiple third-party retailers to access industry-leading technology, warehousing, food preparation and delivery services. Food-X is able to fulfill online orders for all of its customers through purpose-built distribution centers and proprietary route optimized last mile delivery services. Food-X is part of the SPUD integrated food business eco-system that includes online retail, community retail locations, commissary/food preparation services and distribution.
Vanadis is a resourceful, resilient and poised professional with over 7 years of experience in the dynamic field of sustainability. She applies a proactive and conscientious work ethic in developing and implementing initiatives rooted in economic, social, and environmental sustainability.
Her rich background integrates sustainability strategy, program/project management, carbon accounting, sustainability analytics, communications, and research. She currently implements this knowledge at Mountain Equipment Co-Op (MEC) as their Sustainability Specialist. Thriving in a collaborative, dynamic work setting, she develops multi-faced solutions and promising opportunities for tough sustainability issues in both operations and supply chain, all while aligning them with corporate business strategy.
Within the context of K-12 schools, student behavior, and creating bridges between teachers and parents on this path, Larry Davis has been nationally recognized as one of the leading Educational Advocates since 1998. As an author, trainer, and guest speaker, his message continues to inspire audiences through the simple theme: Love, Understanding, and Other Best Practices: The title of his first book. This theme resonates for a wide range of audiences outside of the education community for we are all needing to explore how relationship, connection, and compassion are a critical part of the 21st century tool kit.
Today’s presentation highlights his recent project, SELFIRST, what he calls “The most important work I have ever done”. SELFIRST features valuable lessons found within resilience research and First-Responder coherence training. “Simply, in these most challenging times, we need to shift our approach from a “reactive” perspective to a responsive framework. We all benefit by taking a less reactive approach toward collaboration, problem-solving, and co-creation. This work is founded upon heart-centered relationship building, regulation skills, relevant & meaningful connections, and resilience at the core”. Training will feature HeartMath* strategies and resources as part of the presentation. You will be impressed by the efficacy of the Heartmath toolkit as you explore development of your own personal approach to wellness and being the best version of ourselves.
Lesra Martin’s heartrending story has mesmerized and inspired millions through the major Hollywood feature “The Hurricane”. Its’ star, Denzel Washington, marvelled over Lesra’s real life odyssey from a poorly educated Brooklyn teen to a respected attorney. Inspired by his experiences, The National Film Board of Canada produced the documentary “The Journey of Lesra Martin”, and the compelling film has been screened at film festivals throughout North America. In his book, The Power of a Promise, Lesra shares inspirational life lessons from his personal journey.
Lesra spoke at an international convention of world leaders held at Cambridge University. He was also invited to speak to the General Assembly delegates at the United Nations, where he gave an impassioned speech about the devastating effects of illiteracy and poverty. Lesra has been featured on countless television and radio shows, most notably as a special guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show and the Larry King Live Show. The Washington Post, Sports Illustrated and Reader’s Digest Magazine, have chronicled aspects of Lesra’s life.
Of his eight siblings, Lesra is the only one with a high school diploma. He completed high school as an Ontario scholar in 1983 and received an Honours B.A. from the University of Toronto in 1988. He achieved his law degree from Dalhousie Law School in 1997 and served as a Crown Prosecutor in BC. He now has his own law firm, Martin & Martin Lawyers.
Lesra has received numerous awards and certificates of recognition for his willingness to be a role model and mentor for youth. “The power to make a difference exists in each of us,” he tells audiences.
As an entrepreneur and business strategist, Connie is recognized as one of Canada's top leaders and sustainability professionals and has been involved with helping develop successful companies in the clean energy space. For her work, Connie has received numerous awards, including the TECHGREEN Award from the Applied Science Technologists & Technicians of BC, the Women of Worth Sustainable Living Award, a Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal, the Minerva Leadership Award, the BC Innovation Council's New Ventures Award, and she was named one of Canada's Top 100 Most Powerful Women as a Trailblazer/Trendsetter. Connie has an MBA from the University of British Columbia, and securities and insurance licenses from the Canadian Securities Institute. She is also a certified personal development counsellor and she studied business in Sweden, Germany, and at the renowned HEC Paris.
Camil Dumont is Co-Founder, Head Farmer and Executive Director of the Inner City Farms Society (ICF). ICF is a not-for-profit urban farm in Vancouver, established in 2009. ICF is comprised of a network of front and backyard gardens that have been built throughout the city. The farm is hosted by local land-providers who support the project. In aggregate, ICF farms over an acre of space within the Vancouver city limits. The farm distributes via the Community Shared Agriculture (CSA) model, with a restaurant/chef stream and one for families as well. One of the farm’s primary goals is to gently resist the industrial food system with positive, community-based action while ensuring food production and food consumption remain in the foreground of the sustainability conversation. Camil completed his MSc. at the Faculty of Land and Food Systems at the University of British Columbia (UBC). He works in collaboration with the Centre for Sustainable Food Systems at the UBC farm in the context of ICF’s Urban Farming Internship. Each year since 2012, ICF has welcomed 6-14 urban farming interns and provided an immersive, hyper-local food growing opportunity for city-dwellers who are interested in sustainable farming. In October 2018, Camil was elected to the Vancouver Park Board. He currently sits as a first-term Park Board Commissioner. Camil lives in East Van. His limited and precious spare time is spent with his young family, cooking fine food or playing baseball with the (2018 Champion) Strathcona Stevedores of the East Van Baseball League (EVBL).
Joanne Sawatzky (BTech, MSc., CPHC, LEED AP BD+C) has worked in the green building sector throughout her whole career. She decided on a career in architecture when she was in the seventh grade, which inspired her to pursue a Bachelor in Architecture + Building Science, and a Masters in Energy Efficient Building. As Light House’s anchor employee since 2007, Joanne has led many of Light House’s most challenging and innovative projects, including The Whistler Athletes Village, The Foundry, and Telus Gardens Office and Residential. She works closely with a wide range of clients—from developers to architects—on implementing green building projects, technical policy development, contractor training, and post occupancy evaluations.
Joanne has two decades of experience working in design, construction and operation on commercial, residential, and healthcare building projects across Canada. She is the first female BuiltGreen Canada High Density Verifier and has taught contractor training through the Vancouver Regional Construction Association (VRCA). She has also taught and mentored building science students in the Architectural Science Department at Ryerson University.
When asked about her proudest accomplishments, she’ll tell you that getting a project—any project—complete, and seeing her clients get what they need, is the best feeling. To Joanne, sustainability is about making small but measurable changes that add up…and lead to better buildings and a better quality of life.
An engineer-planner, Kim Stephens has more than four decades of experience. This covers the continuum of water resource and infrastructure engineering issues and applications, from master planning and modelling to implementation of capital projects.
He specializes in public policy and professional development, and has played a leadership role in a series of initiatives in British Columbia related to water sustainability, watershed health, rainwater management and green infrastructure.
In 1997, he was a member of the Ministry of Environment Working Group that developed A Water Conservation Strategy for British Columbia, released in 1998.
Circa 2000, Kim looked at rainfall differently and developed the Water Balance Methodology that the provincial government then incorporated in Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia, released in 2002.
In 2003, Kim was asked by the provincial government to develop the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia, released in 2004. Ever since, Kim has been responsible for Action Plan program delivery and evolution. This program includes leading the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Educational Initiative. Five regions representing 75% of BC’s population are partners in the initiative.
Kim has received wide recognition for his pioneering efforts. This includes a Premier’s Award for Excellence and Innovation (2009). Also, he has been invited to speak on ‘the BC experience’ and make keynote presentations at forums throughout North America, as well as in Australia (2001, 2016). In 2015, for example, he was invited by United States Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont to provide inspirational remarks at the 2nd Leahy Environmental Summit.
Prior to his retirement in 2014, Ted worked for the Ministry of Agriculture for 35 years specializing in irrigation, water management and water resources planning. During his career Ted built an international reputation for his leading edge work in agricultural water management. He has been the lead author on many irrigation and water management papers and manuals and has taken the lead on the development of the Agriculture Water Demand Model and BC Agriculture Water Calculator. This was demonstrated as a recipient of the International Irrigation Association’s 2000 Crawford Reid Memorial Award. Ted was awarded the Premiers Legacy award in 2014 for the many initiatives and models that he spearheaded while with the province. He currently is president of the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC, a not for profit society established to help implement a Water Sustainability plan for the province.
Dr. Carin Bondar is a biologist, author and TV host. Her work is aimed at drawing a greater awareness to the vast overlap between human and animal worlds – specifically in the context of sustainability. Bondar is the author of the books Wild Sex and Wild Moms (Pegasus). She is writer and host of the online series based on her books (Wild Sex and Wild Moms) which have garnered over 120,000,000 views. Her TED talk on the subject has nearly 3 million views. Bondar is an adventurer and explorer, having discovered 11 new species of beetles and snails in the remote jungles of Borneo – as part of a global effort at species mapping and conservation. Bondar is a mom of 4 kids, two boys and two girls.
Kurtis is the Commercial & Fisheries Manager for the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) in Canada West. In this role he works with the entire seafood supply chain from the source fisheries to the companies that process and sell seafood to consumers. Kurtis helps support them on their journey toward sustainability, helping ensure the long-term health of oceans while providing sustainable and traceable products to increasingly discerning consumers.
Kurtis holds a master’s degree in marine biology from the University of Alberta and throughout his career has touched various aspects of marine conservation and biology. He began with Coral Cay Conservation in the rural Philippines, focusing on building community and fisher supported marine protected areas. He then gained deep knowledge of supply chain engagement and sustainable seafood policy building working with major Canadian grocers in his years with SeaChoice. In between Kurtis has worn many other hats including ecological educator and river rafting guide at RiverWatch in Edmonton, fishmonger at The Fish Counter, and in his spare time he volunteers as an ecological reserve warden on a remote Fraser River island.
For Alison, it all started with a love for British Columbia's coast and a mission to conserve its beauty for generations to come. Shortly after completing her BA from UBC's Geography Department, Alison decided to focus her energy on issues within the waste sector. Since co-founding Nada and working closely alongside Vancouver's top industry experts, she's taking her new-found entrepreneurial skill set and working on creating an unpackaged future!
Meg O’Shea is the Manager of Small to Medium Enterprises and Program Manager of Thriving Vancouver at the Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC). VEC‘s mission is to build a prosperous and resilient city for all Vancouverites. Meg drives Thriving Vancouver, VEC’s platform for business engagement and connection to greening opportunities, addressing social challenges, and recognition of business leadership in the green and impact economies. Meg holds a PhD in Environmental Studies with a focus on community-scale collaboration for sustainability solutions. She has supported transformation in many arenas including the commercial sector, the circular economy, higher education, performing arts, and community initiatives.
Jamie’s experience is in solid waste management from both a ground level as well as from a policymaking perspective. Jamie’s area of expertise lies within international best practices in Zero Waste and in respect to internationally accepted Zero Waste policies and programs. Jamie works with fellow policy advisors to create strong, practical and enforceable policies that drive change towards Zero Waste. With 27 years of active engagement in the waste diversion industry working for HSR, Jamie has developed extensive experience in understanding how regional policies and bylaws affect the existing waste management system from the perspective of the service provider, the client, as well as the region as a whole. As the lead policy advisor for Zero Waste Canada, Jamie represents the primary reference point in the field of Zero Waste nationwide.
Minto Roy is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Social Print Paper in Vancouver, Canada. Minto is also the co-creator of the forest-free "Sugar Sheet” and “Wheat Sheet” paper brands.
With the vision to create a world that no longer uses trees to make paper, Minto and his team work to advance the greater awareness and use of agricultural paper to support the paper and printing requirements of industry, gov’t and academic institutions.
In collaboration with clients and distribution partners, Social Print Paper has saved millions of trees and reduced the release of millions of kilograms of green house gas emissions.
Minto was recognized "One of Canada’s Top Emerging Immigrant Entrepreneurs" by the National Post and was also recognized in 2016 by Canada’s Clean50 as “One of Canada’s Top 50 Leaders in Sustainability”.
Minto was also the co-owner of the Canadian Immigrant Magazine and has published many articles in national and regional publications. Minto also created and hosted 4 popular radio shows in Vancouver related to H.R.,Sales, Marketing and Business.
Minto is a committed family man and participates in local charities and associations. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters and proudly supports the work of Junior Achievement in Canada and The David Suzuki Foundation.
As the Program Director for Dan’s Legacy, Tom manages the entire team of contract counsellors, as well as develops the organization’s therapeutic counselling and life-skills programs for at-risk youth. Tom received his B.A. in Psychology in 1985 from Simon Fraser University, and spend the next six years completing his Masters in Psychology. He developed one of the first diversion programs for at-risk youth while working as a police counsellor, and established the original Affinity Card campaign as the founding Executive Director for the Selkirk College Foundation. Tom also founded and served as the Executive Director for the Sanctuary Foundation which, for fifteen years, provided work and life-skills programs, counselling and first jobs for thousands of at-risk youth in the Lower Mainland. For the last fifteen years Tom has managed and volunteered at a local food cooperative, personally attending to the pick-up and delivery of surplus food donated by a national grocery chain. The recovered food is central to the success of Dan’s Legacy’s outreach programs for youth, as many of them have food security issues directly contributing to mental health and addictions challenges. Tom’s work ensures that over 500 at-risk youth, seniors, and low-income residents receive healthy and nutritious food on a weekly basis, valued at close to $1 million per year.
Lily is a marine biologist, an outdoor instructor, a science communications enthusiast, an avid SCUBA diver and a budding nature photographer. Above all, she aims to empower and inspire the next generation of ocean stewards.
Lily currently works as the Environmental Programs Manager at Sea Smart, a Vancouver-based non-profit that helps young people love, connect with and protect our oceans. Through innovative outdoor education programs, Lily teaches students every-day strategies to reduce their carbon footprint, eat more sustainably and use less plastic. Before Sea Smart, Lily spent a year in the Bahamas, where she combined coral reef research with experiential education opportunities for local schools. Specifically, Lily studied ways to improve coral restoration on the tiny island of Eleuthera, she conducted island-wide coral reef health assessments and designed outreach programs that engaged Bahamians in ocean-based coral gardening.
Last October, Lily graduated with a Master of Science at Simon Fraser University. Working closely with her supervisor, Dr. Isabelle Côté, Lily won the prestigious NSERC Canadian Graduate Students research grant to investigate invasive Indo-Pacific lionfish ecology in the Dutch Caribbean. Before diving into the world of underwater education, however, Lily lived in Norway’s High Arctic and worked full-time as an environmental journalist. There, she reported on controversial eco-issues ranging from traditional seal hunts to Russia’s empire of nuclear-powered icebreakers.
Rebecca Hamilton is a 16 year old climate justice activist from Vancouver. She organizes with Climate Strike Canada, a movement of young people people across the country organizing climate strikes and other actions to build community and shift the narrative of climate emergency. In November, she founded Sustainabiliteens, the Vancouver Climate Strike group. She is enthusiastic about uniting young people though the climate justice movement: the movement of their generation. She also enjoys biking, learning guitar and reading about plants.
Elected as a trustee of Clearbrook Waterworks District (CWD) in 2014, Paul Leppky has been the chairman since 2018. He and his family have been part of the Abbotsford community for over 29 years. Paul is a professional in the financial services industry with over 18 years tenure at a local BC based credit union. His business education and experience are an asset in ensuring the long-term sustainability of the water supply and distribution at CWD. CWD is fortunate to be a repeat winner at the annual Berkley Springs International Water Tasting Awards. Last month the district was awarded top honours (Gold) in the municipal water division.
A social entrepreneur and an avid advocate of the Circular Economy and Sustainability in the Fashion Industry.
Taking special interest in Textile Waste, Irina founded FABCYCLE, a B2B collection service of textile waste to enable designers to disrupt the cycle of garment production and transform waste into resources by finding innovative outlets to Reuse, Recycle and Recover Fabric Waste.
Prior to FABCYCLE, Irina has founded Frameworq, an event-based initiative that brings together designers and consumers to explore the relationship we have with our clothes using a hands-on experiential approach.
Frameworq has partnered with various organizations to fuse collaboration and curiosity into sustainability in apparel, hosting events such as design challenges, recurring fix it events, clothing swaps, exhibitions and fashion shows.
Jen Gamble is the Executive Director of Operations for the Certified Organic Associations of BC (COABC), a non-profit organization that oversees organic certification in BC. COABC aims to lead, support and enhance the certified organic food system in BC. Over the past several years in her role with COABC, Jen has been working with the Ministry of Agriculture to help smooth the transition into the new provincial regulation that will ensure organic claims are verified by certification.
Jen has a long history of involvement in the food system, from farming to advocacy. As a farmer, she could see the disconnect between farmers, consumers and the food system which inspired her to became a deeply dedicated member of the organic food movement.
Jess Montgomery is the founder of Think the World Differently, a non-profit organization based in Vancouver that offers educational workshops on the environmental impacts of the global clothing industry, and empowers participants to embrace sustainable alternatives. Jess is a contributing writer for Not Just A Label, and a revised version of her MA thesis will be published in the peer-reviewed publication Ethical Fashion and Empowerment in 2019. She speaks regularly on the environmental impacts of clothing overconsumption and the need for values-based change, including at: Young Women in Business UBC Couture for a Cause Gala, Grace Club, Victoria Eco Fashion Week, and TEDxChilliwack.
Gwen Gnazdowsky, founder of “ONE Conversation Coaching & Facilitation” has been helping people resolve issues and achieve personal, professional and relationship goals, One Conversation at a time for over 25 years. She has mentored and coached thousands of people, helping them to empower themselves and to transform their lives. Her public-speaking engagements include a Ted Talk called “Happiness is a Paradigm Shift” for TEDxBCIT; she was the Speaker Coach for two years at TEDxECUAD. Gwen has also taught Assertiveness, Communication and Public Speaking Courses at Langara College and Vancouver School Board. She was the National Mentorship Program Developer and Coordinator for two cohorts at the Women in Leadership Foundation. Gwen has designed and delivered workshops for a number of clients including: British Columbia Institute of Technology, (BCIT), for Human-Resources Management Association (HRMA), Certified Management Accountant Association, (CPA), University of British Columbia (UBC) Anthropology Students, Canadian Women in Science and Technology, (SCWIST), Crofton House School, the YMCA and YWCA. Gwen is the Co-Chair of The Laurier Institution a national, non-profit supporting diversity. She began her career in Social Services and as a Life Skills Coach; she worked with people in crisis, especially Youth at Risk and their families.
Sam Waddington is a lifelong lover of everything in the natural world and is the founder and owner of Mt. Waddington’s Outdoors, an outdoor equipment and guiding business in Chilliwack BC. Sam’s unique childhood on a sailboat throughout the Pacific Ocean was foundational in setting him on a life path of adventure, travel, activism and entrepreneurship. His travels have taken him to over 40 countries and his work has included tree planting in Northern Canada, scuba diving guiding in Egypt, aid photography in West Africa and guiding in Alaska.
In 2013 Mt. Waddington’s Outdoors founded 1% for Chilliwack Trails, an initiative aimed at channeling 1% of Profits from member businesses, back to trail building, maintenance and backcountry environmental work.
Waddington also served a term as a City Councillor in Chilliwack, and 2 years on the Federation of Canadian Municipalities as its youngest ever board member, and a standing member of the Environment Committee. Sam’s impacts on the City of Chilliwack can be seen in the creation of a cycling masterplan, the doubling of its transit system, waterways restoration plans, and a general shift in environmental consciousness within the municipality. At the Fraser Valley Regional District Sam chaired the Indigenous Relations Committee, focusing on reconciliation, and spearheaded the ongoing Outdoor Recreation masterplan that stretches from the Central Fraser Valley to Manning Park and the Fraser Canyon. Sam was a Mayoral Candidate in Chilliwack in the 2018 Municipal Election.
Adam is a serial entrepreneur with an extensive background in deconstruction, reclaimed woodwork & Passive House construction. Flipping his first house with his father at the age of 16, he was instantly hooked on crafting old, weathered projects into new, fresh and well-built homes and spaces. After founding and running Naturally Crafted Contracting for 6 years, Adam saw a need for major changes in the demolition industry. Validating a deconstruction company through several projects and fine tuning the processes, Unbuilders Deconstruction was launched in January 2018. Passionate about skiing, hiking mountains and spending as much time outdoors, he is committed in providing a sustainable future for generations to enjoy.
Unbuilders is Canada’s foremost deconstruction company. Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, we unbuild homes by hand and salvage almost everything, including irreplaceable old growth lumber, windows, doors, cabinets, fixtures and appliances. Unbuilders maximizes the material salvage to minimize the cost, hassle and environmental footprint. The salvaged goods are then donated to charity generating a tax receipt for the building owner and reducing our cost below traditional demolition. Our preferred charity, Habitat for Humanity, uses proceeds from the material sales to build affordable housing. Thus hiring Unbuilders satisfies the triple bottom line - planet, people, profit. We are proud to hold the City of Vancouver’s highest recorded salvage and recycle rate at 99% of a single-family home.
Peggy Vogler is the owner and operator of Aphrodite’s Organic Café and Pie Shop, an independent restaurant and bakery located on Vancouver’s West side that is fiercely dedicated to serving only organic food to their customers.
Aphrodite’s was founded in 2003 by Peggy’s father, Allan Christian, as part of his journey into health and wellness and eventually strongly advocating support for the local organic food movement in BC. Allan passed away in 2008 and Peggy immediately stepped away from her career(s) in her home town of Whistler, BC to ensure that his legacy would live on.
While Peggy calls herself an “accidental restaurateur” yet she has vast experience working in customer service and has a similar entrepreneurial spirit to her father; co-founding the Whistler Waldorf School, an independent non-profit school serving families from K – 12. Peggy was the Director of Development at the school and also served on the Board of Directors for 16 years seeing the school grow from 3 children in 1999 to over 200 children today. Peggy’s first career was working at Whistler Blackcomb, starting out as a children’s ski instructor and working her way up into senior leadership roles in the Ski School/Intrawest management team, until she left after 22 years to focus on Aphrodite’s full time.
Sara Dent is the Co-Founder and Executor Director of Young Agrarians, a Canada wide farmer2farmer resource network. With a focus on supporting new and young people on their journeys into ecological and regenerative agriculture, Sara dreams of a future where all beings can potentiate through healthy food systems and relationships to the land. Sara has a background in photography, communications and agroecology. She has put her passion and skills towards building a suite of programs and services for new farmers in B.C.
Young Agrarians provides four main programs: the B.C. Land Matching Program which matches new farmers to land, the Business Mentorship Network that connects new farms to production and business mentorship, educational events on and off farms year round, and aggregation of online resources and opportunities. Join us and help grow our community of engaged new and young farmers and friends!