Anti-Black Racism – Best Practices 2021

Tuesday, November 30, 2021
10 am to 5 pm EST

​Join the City of Brampton’s Economic Empowerment and Anti-Black Racism Unit for this year’s free virtual conference to address Anti-Black racism and economic empowerment for Black Canadians.

This conference will bring together municipalities from across Ontario to listen, share, support and collaborate with one another as we identify and strategize ways to breakdown barriers for Black Canadians.

Who should attend:

  • Individuals working in Anti-Black racism, diversity and inclusion
  • Municipalities and organizations working towards addressing Anti-Black racism ​
  • Educational institutions and students specializing in Anti-Black racism​, diversity and inclusion

Register here

Click here to review the event agenda.​​

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​​Partners and Supporters


Event Speakers

  • Alethia Stevenson

    Guest Speaker: Alethia Stevenson​


      Founder, President, Dufferin County Canadian Black Association​

      Alethia is a highly sought-after speaker, author and community advocate who is passionate about Diversity Equity and inclusion initiatives and advancing the needs of her community.  She is the recipient of multiple awards including the RBC Global Citizen Award, the Town of Shelburne Community Excellence Award and a 2020 MyFm Woman of Influence honoree. 

      Alethia Holds a BA in Political Science from York University, an MBA in Leadership and Innovation from Edinburgh Napier University in Scotland and a Chartered Insurance Professional (CIP) Designation from the Insurance Institute of Canada.  

    • Angela Carter

      Guest Speaker: Angela Carter​


        ​Executive Director, ROOTS Community Services

      • Anthony Morgan

        Guest Speaker: Anthony Morgan ​


          ​Anthony Morgan is a lawyer and the Manager of the City of Toronto’s Confronting Anti-Black Racism (CABR) Unit. The CABR Unit is responsible for the implementation of the Toronto Action Plan to Confront Anti-Black Racism. 

          Prior to joining the City, Anthony was an Associate at Falconers LLP, specializing in the areas of civil, constitutional and criminal state accountability litigation. He has a special interest in anti-racist human rights advocacy, particularly in the area of anti-Black racism. He has appeared at various levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada, and has also represented the interests of African Canadians before United Nations human rights treaty bodies. In both 2016 and 2017, Anthony was nominated as one of Canada’s Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers by Canadian Lawyer Magazine.   

        • Bonnie Crombie

          Guest Speaker: Bonnie Crombie​


            ​Mayor, City of Mississauga

            Since first being elected as Mayor in 2014, Bonnie Crombie has worked diligently to improve the quality of life for Mississauga residents by holding the line on taxes, investing in improving traffic congestion, building regionally connected transit, and attracting major economic development all while managing the growth of Canada’s sixth-largest city.  

            Prior to being elected as Mayor, Bonnie served as the Ward 5 City Councillor, and previous to that, as Member of Parliament for Mississauga-Streetsville.

            Before entering public service, Mayor Crombie enjoyed a twenty-year career in business.  

            Building regionally-integrated transit, keeping Mississauga open for business, fostering innovation and creating a more open, engaging and inclusive city have been Mayor Crombie’s leading priorities since taking office. 

            She has an MBA from York University’s Schulich School of Business and earned a Corporate Director’s Certificate from the Institute of Corporate Directors at the Rotman School of Management. 

            She is proud to have raised three children, Alex, Jonathan and Natasha here in Mississauga.

          • Carolann Wright

            Guest Speaker: Carolann Wright​


              Director, Capacity Building and Strategic Initiatives- African Nova Scotian communities

              Carolann has an academic background in economics and business along with certificates in program management, project management and leadership development. 

              She has worked in the areas of Community and Community Economic Development for over 40 years in a variety of locales including Toronto, Nova Scotia, South Africa, Ghana.

              Born and raised in the community of Beechville, Carolann is the second oldest in a family of nine.  Beechville was originally settled in 1812 and is one of 30 historical black communities in the province of Nova Scotia.

              Carolann is also the descendent of Black Refugees; also known as Freedom Fighters.

            • Charmaine Williams

              Guest Speaker: Charmaine Williams ​


                Charmaine Williams has been a member of the Bramalea community since 1981.    

                As a homeowner and proud mother of five beautiful children, she knows the challenges that Brampton residents face and understands the need to build a better Brampton for all families, seniors and small business owners.

                Charmaine wants to truly engage residents in decisions at City Hall.  She wants to make streets safer, ensure that families have access to social and recreational services that they want and need, and restore respect for taxpayers.  She continues to work passionately to ensure that Brampton is an inclusive City with opportunities for all residents. Charmaine’s beliefs, values and courage to advocate for people are shaped by her professional and personal experiences.

                Professionally, Charmaine is a certified Multi-Systemic Therapist, behavioural consultant and counsellor. During her 19-year career, she has been a voice on behalf of families and children of all ages coping with domestic violence, mental illness, substance abuse, neglect, trauma and other personal challenges.  She has worked in a number of therapeutic programs and organizations like Associated Youth Services of Peel, Youth Substance Abuse Program, Peel Children’s Center and the Reach Out Center for Kids in Peel and the Halton Region.  

                Charmaine believes that public service is the art of the possible, and her recent personal experience overcoming a debilitating health issue demonstrated her determination to pursue what is possible. Charmaine pushed through the obstacles to be able to enter public service in 2018, inspired and energized to work for her community.

                She and her husband, Steve, live in Ward 7.

              • Christopher Alexander

                Guest Speaker: Christopher Alexander ​


                  ​Mr. Alexander is an entrepreneur and a former banker with over 30 years of cross-functional experience in the financial service industry, Waste Energy, Construction and Business Consulting. He has experience in business development, not-for-profit and community organizations.

                  Mr. Alexander is a Business mentor and a coach with exceptional knowledge of strategy development, risk management, cost reduction, operational planning, and continuous improvement of technology and processes. He has an excellent grasp of strategy, strategic financial planning, business development, and operational management. With a unique ability to effect operational change leading to improved business performance, maximization of profitability as client satisfaction, creating value for his clients is his number one priority. He has a keen interest in with Micro Businesses in various industries and runs a Boutique Consulting firm that provides support to these businesses.

                  Chris is the CEO of Zhoosh Service Enterprise Inc. The Chief Operations Officer of the Festival Management Committee, the organization that produces the Toronto Caribbean Carnival. He is a Finance Executive for Alliance Financing Group, and an Executive Director of Connecting You Now.

                  He has a keen interest in his community and believes that improvements are necessary for the way forward. Improving and promoting our culture is critical to him. Also, focusing on economic, political, legal, communication and education are the areas very high on his agenda. He has been involved in a number of organizations and ran youth groups, small groups, and couples’ groups for a number of years.

                  Mr. Alexander holds an MBA from Dalhousie University, a Bachelor of Business Management Degree from Ryerson University. He is a Personal Financial Planner, and a Fellow of the Institute of Canadian Bankers.

                • Claudia McKoy

                  Guest Speaker: Claudia McKoy​


                    Ms. McKoy is the founder and principal of UpSurgence— a strategic engagement firm that identifies and bridges connectivity gaps for businesses, nonprofits and cities. In 2018, Ms McKoy teamed up with The Canadian Cultural Society of the Deaf, OCADU, TakingITglobal, Little Robot Friends and members of the Deaf community to identify how to create Deaf friendly cities in partnership with Sidewalk Labs as a part of its “Co-designing Inclusive Cities” initiative. In addition, the team created, designed and hosted a coding and robotics class specifically for Deaf children.

                    In 2020, Ms. McKoy coordinated and secured financing for Brampton’s first trade mission to Nigeria. The Canadian delegates included the city’s first Black female elected Councillor, Charmaine Williams and its Mayor Patrick Brown. She co-designed the mission with Brampton City Staff, Pertinence Ltd. as well as with the Nigeria Canada Trade & Investment Group (“NCTIG”). On September 30th 2020, Ms. McKoy presented the Nigerian trade mission to the City of Brampton’s Council. The success of the trade mission led to a unanimous vote in Brampton’s City Council to add both African and Caribbean nations to the city’s FDI program—making it the first city to do so in Canada.

                    Ms. McKoy is the consultant of Mississauga’s 2021 Black Community Engagement for its Mayor Bonnie Crombie to tackle systemic racism within the City of Mississauga. Ms. McKoy worked `with the Mayor’s advisory Black Caucus and her staff to develop the initiative’s engagement

                    strategies and content development for each of the six sessions that explored political inclusion, social services, health, housing, economic empowerment as well as policing.  The initiative also included a developed data acquisition strategy to ensure greater insights into the communities’

                    collective beliefs and desires to then conduct both qualitative and quantitative analyses. 

                    Through research and interviews, Ms. McKoy identified over 60 high-quality subject matter expert presenters that included Hon. Ahmed Hussen, MP; Greg Fergus, MP; Michael Coteau, MPP; The Hon. Justice Michael H. Tulloch, justice advocate Akwasi Owusu-Bempah, and the former director of Ontario's Office of the Independent Police Review (OIPRD), Gerry McNeilly. Ms. McKoy will deliver a full report of recommendations to address systemic racism by December 2021.  

                  • Dahabo Ahmed-Omer

                    Guest Speaker: Dahabo Ahmed-Omer​


                      ​Executive Director, Black North Initiative

                      Ms. Ahmed-Omer has accumulated a wealth of experience andaccomplishments in the performance measurement, policydevelopment, HR planning analysis, and employment equity anddiversity sectors. Ms. Ahmed-Omer has been the recipient of notableawards over the years, including the exceptional service within theFederal Public Service, the Canada150 Community Builder Award, theHope Academy community contribution award, the Ottawa BlackHistory Community Leadership Award, the top 100 under 40 MostInfluential Person of African descent in support of United Nationsdecade and most recently, the Globe and Mail’s Inaugural BusinessChangemakers Award (2021)

                      In the professional realm, Ms. Ahmed-Omer was recently appointed asthe Executive Director of the BlackNorth Initiative. In her previousrole, Ms. Ahmed-Omer was the Human Resources Specialist within thePublic Sector and primarily responsible for the Visible MinorityAdvisory Steering Committee of the Agency and working in theagency-wide Employment Equity Action Plan and Anti-racism Strategy.

                      Ms. Ahmed-Omer is a founding member of the Justice for AbdirahmanCoalition, which advocated securing justice for the late AbdirahmanAbdi and his family. A previous member of the Black Agenda Noirorganization, a Circle of United Black Citizens whose goal is to cementBlack presence on the national radar. Ms. Ahmed-Omer is also theChair of the Federation of Black Canadians, a national non-profitorganization driven by Black organizations across Canada, whichadvances the social, economic, and cultural interests of Canadians ofAfrican descent.

                      Among the many other organizations she has been a part of, Ms.Ahmed-Omer has played an instrumental leadership role in theOttawa Mayor’s taskforce combatting anti-black racism. Ms. Ahmed-Omer was a lead researcher for Justice for Abdirahman for itssubmission to the Justice Tulloch Independent Police Oversight Reviewand street check review. Ms. Ahmed-Omer has also played an integralrole in the rollout of the new Ottawa Police Service’s recruitmentstrategy and being a lead member of Black Agenda Noir. Her crucialrole in the Nyansapo Wisdom, which promotes equity and inclusionfor African, Caribbean, Black Canadians (ACBC) students in education,has seen Dahabo make deputations at the School Board to addressseries of challenges facing children and teens of African descentwithin the Ottawa school Board. Ms. Ahmed-Omer stands as a strongrole model, particularly to members of all-Black communities, and hasplayed a transformative role in improving the quality of life ofCanadians of African descent and the community at large.​

                    • Danavan Samuels

                      Guest Speaker: Danavan Samuels​


                        Danavan Samuels has spent a career working at the intersection of the social determinants of health, Anti-Black racism and policy. He has worked in leadership roles at all levels of government and has been at the helm for the distribution of over $100M in investments in Black Communities.He believes conversations on Anti-Bkack racism must begin and end with the creation of systems of economic empowerment. 

                        Danavan gives of his time and knowledge freely to support the current and next generations of young leaders through his work supporting infrastructure development for grassroots organizations. He strongly believes that the changes we seek for our society have to be embedded in the approach we use to mentor young leaders and to challenge the status quo.

                        Danavan is currently the Manager of the Supporting Black Canadian Communities Initiatives, a Federal initiative to strengthen infrastructure in Black Communities across Canada.

                      • Dolly Williams

                        Guest Speaker: Dolly Williams​


                          Co-Chair, of the African Nova Scotian Road to Economic Prosperity Advisory Council

                          Dolly is very active in Social-Activism and works in many communities across Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Canada.

                          She is the President of the Preston & Area Housing Fund Housing Board; a non-profit organization that has served communities for over 45 years.

                          Dolly works and volunteers on many issues including housing rights, human rights, racism and other issues that negatively impact women and their families.

                        • Dr. Akwatu Khenti

                          Guest Speaker: Dr. Akwatu Khenti​


                            ​Akwatu Khenti is an affiliate scientist with the Institute for Mental Health Policy Research (IMHPR) at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) and an assistant Professor within the Dalla Lana School of Health.  He is formerly the Assistant Deputy Minister for Ontario’s Anti-Racism Directorate (2017-2020) as well as CAMH’s Director of Transformative Global Health. (1997-2017).  Akwatu has a Specialist Degree in Economics, a Masters in Political Science from the University of Toronto, and a PhD in health policy and equity from York University.   

                            Dr. Khenti has inspired many local efforts to improve Black mental health across Latin American and Caribbean communities through intensive regional substance abuse training for addictive disorders.  He also developed an anti-stigma intervention in primary health care in Ontario and has co-led drug research capacity building for the past decade years with the Inter-American Drug Control Commission (CICAD, OAS) involving 30 universities across Latin America and the Caribbean.  Akwatu was a researcher on the development of easy-to-follow, culturally adapted cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) interventions for working with individuals of Latin American origin as well as those of African Caribbean origin (both English and French speaking).  This CBT intervention has been applied with Vodou spiritual leaders in Haiti to assess whether it can strengthen the system of informal care.  Akwatu also led the development of a specialized drug treatment and prevention programs for Black youth in Toronto, entitled the Substance Abuse Program for African and Caribbean Youth (SAPACCY).  His doctoral research chronicled the effects of social determinants of racialized gun violence in Toronto’s 140 neighborhoods from 2004-2014.  

                            Akwatu Khenti is an affiliate scientist with the Institute for Mental Health Policy Research (IMHPR) at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) and an assistant Professor within the Dalla Lana School of Health.  He is formerly the Assistant Deputy Minister for Ontario’s Anti-Racism Directorate (2017-2020) as well as CAMH’s Director of Transformative Global Health. (1997-2017). 

                            Dr. Khenti has inspired many local efforts to improve Black mental health across Latin American and Caribbean communities through intensive regional substance abuse training for addictive disorders.   

                          • Dr. Denise O'Neil Green

                            Guest Speaker: Dr. Denise O'Neil Green​


                              ​Vice President, Equity and Community Inclusion, Ryerson University

                              Dr. Denise O'Neil Green was appointed Ryerson University’s first Vice-President, Equity and Community Inclusion in 2017. With a passion for advancing inclusive excellence, Dr. Green draws on her teaching, scholarly and leadership background of 30 years, establishing new and innovative pedagogical initiatives and programs. Dr. Green is accomplished in building rapport and networks, effectively collaborating with diverse stakeholders both inside and outside the university sector. Dr. Green brought the first White Privilege Conference (WPC) Global to Toronto in 2018 and convened the first University and Research Funding ​Agencies’ Equity Officers Roundtable . Dr. Green is well published in the area of EDI and is the Executive Editor for . A frequent speaker on EDI in higher education, she has received numerous awards including the 2017 Association for the Study of Higher Education Council on Ethnic Participation Founders’ Service Award and the 2016 Pioneers for Change Award.​

                            • Hon. Parm Gill

                              Guest Speaker: Hon. Parm Gill​


                                Parm Gill, Member of Provincial Parliament for Milton, is a diligent advocate for public safety and maintaining equality in the community and Ontario. Parm was appointed to Cabinet in 2021, and currently serves as the Minister of Citizenship and Multiculturalism.

                                Prior to his work in public service, Parm was involved in numerous family businesses in the manufacturing and hospitality industries. Parm studied at the Ivey School of Business at Western University, earning his Master of Business Administration degree.

                                Before being elected to the Ontario Legislature in 2018, Parm was the Federal Member of Parliament in the House of Commons from 2011-2015.

                                Parm was appointed by the Prime Minister as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Veteran Affairs, and later, the Minister of International Trade. Throughout his tenure, Parm was a member of many committees including the Standing Committee of Public Safety and National Security, Health, Canadian Heritage, Veterans Affairs, and International Trade.

                                Parm has always felt strongly about keeping the youth of Ontario, and Canada as a whole, safe. He believes that the youth is the future of our great country, it is important to keep them safe and on the path to success.

                                In 2012, Parm introduced a Private Member’s Bill, C-394. His bill introduced a new Criminal Code offense: prohibiting the recruitment or encouragement of a person to join a criminal organization. The bill passed and became law in June 2014. Since most criminal organizations look to youth when recruiting new members, the bill works to keep our streets, neighbourhoods, and communities safer, which has always been a top priority for Parm.

                                Parm is working hard to achieve a safer Ontario. As a resident of Milton, he is committed to working tirelessly for his constituents.​

                              • Hon. Wanda Thomas

                                Guest Speaker: Hon. Wanda Thomas​


                                  Senator Wanda Thomas Bernard is the first African Nova Scotian woman to be appointed to the Senate of Canada, representing the province of Nova Scotia and her hometown of East Preston. Senator Bernard champions issues impacting African Canadians and people living with disabilities. She is particularly invested in human rights, employment equity, and mental health. Through her involvement in community projects, her social work career, her time with Dalhousie School of Social Work, and now her work in the Senate and as Deputy Chair of the Standing Senate Committee on Human Rights, Senator Bernard has maintained a deep dedication to social justice and racial justice. Senator Bernard advocates for reparations for the historic and continued anti-Black racism impacting the lives of African Canadians in her work.​

                                • Hon. Zanana Akande

                                  Guest Speaker: Hon. Zanana Akande ​


                                    ​Zanana Lorraine Akande (born c. 1937) is a former politician in Ontario, Canada. She was a New Democratic member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario from 1990 to 1994 who represented the downtown Toronto riding of St. Andrew—St. Patrick. She served as a cabinet minister in the government of Bob Rae. She was the first woman from the African Diaspora elected to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, and the first woman from the African Diaspora to serve as a cabinet minister in Canada.

                                    A daughter of immigrants from the Caribbean, she became a teacher and school principal in the Toronto public school system. After her election in 1990, she was appointed to cabinet as Minister of Community and Social Services but resigned because her private financial arrangements appeared to violate cabinet guidelines. A subsequent review cleared her of any wrongdoing. In 1992, she was named parliamentary assistant to Premier Bob Rae. In 1994 she quit politics after a dispute over the handling of an investigation and firing of Ontario civil servant Carlton Masters.

                                    As of 2009, Akande is retired but continues to be involved in the community, serving as a volunteer on boards and committees of local organizations including the YWCA and Centennial College.

                                  • Irvine Carvery

                                    Guest Speaker: Irvine Carvery​


                                      ​Co-Chair, The Halifax Partnership

                                    • Jenee Jarvis

                                      Guest Speaker: Jenee Jarvis​


                                        Program Coordinator, Capacity Building and Strategic Initiatives - African Nova Scotian Communities – Halifax Partnership

                                        Jenee has a background in office administration but her heart and passion lies in community work.  

                                        As program coordinator for the African Nova Scotian Communities – Halifax Partnership, it is Jenee’s role support the work of the African Nova Scotian Road to Economic Prosperity and all of the committees completing this work.  She is responsible for the management of special projects, event logistics, meetings, and everyday office tasks.

                                        Jenee has worked in government for over 10 years which has given her an understanding of policies and practices used by each level of government.  Her work with and on behalf of my community contributes to the strength of work with the Halifax Partnership and the African Nova Scotian Road to Economic Prosperity. 

                                      • Juliet Jackson

                                        Guest Speaker: Juliet Jackson​


                                          ​Director, Culture & Inclusion, Region of Peel

                                          Juliet Jackson is the Director of Culture and Inclusion at the Region of Peel and has held many leadership positions during her 29 years, which has contributed to her becoming an accomplished strategic leader, coach and influencer in the Public Sector.  In addition, Juliet sits on a number of advisory boards and committees, has been the President of the Peel Children’s Aid Society Board since June 2017 and has actively supported the development of wrap wound service models for Afro-Canadians and south Asians and Arabic families involved in the child welfare system.  

                                          In February of 2017, the Office of Culture and Inclusion was established.  Juliet is responsible for facilitating a shift in organizational culture which is foundational to creating a diverse and inclusive workplace and influencing inclusive program design and delivery to meet the diverse needs of the Peel Community.  In response to Anti-Black Racism being declared a crisis in Peel Region by Regional council in 2020, Juliet is tasked with leading the charge in partnership with local municipalities and internal and external stakeholders to address and dismantle anti-black racism and systemic discrimination in Peel.  

                                          Often considered a disruptor, Juliet is committed to safety for all, supporting leaders to find comfort in uncomfortable spaces, and modeling the characteristics required to make inclusion a reality; care, compassion and empathy. 

                                        • Kenneth Jeffers

                                          Guest Speaker: Kenneth Jeffers ​


                                            ​Ken Jeffers' career spans over 45 years in which he has worked with diverse communities, individuals, agencies and organizations in the field of recreation and community development providing training, program design and implementation.

                                            Ken was the manager of the Access and Diversity Unit in Parks, Forestry and Recreation, City of Toronto with management responsibility for all aspects of equity, diversity and human rights as they relate to the delivery of programs, services and activities.

                                            Through his work, Ken has recognized the need for greater outreach and participation by culturally and racially diverse communities. Some of his major responsibilities included but were not limited to, training on the benefits of diversity and inclusion for all levels of staff, including senior management, active leadership on the Interdivisional Staff Teams on Access, Equity and Human Rights, chaired and trained the Corporate, Staff Team on Immigration and Settlement, and the development of a succession plan with an emphasis on equity and diversity.

                                          • Kerry-Ann Douglas-Powell

                                            Guest Speaker: Kerry-Ann Douglas-Powell​


                                              ​Manager, Organizational Transformation, Anti-Racism Directorate, Ministry of Citizenship and Multiculturalism

                                              Kerry-Ann Douglas-Powell uses the pronouns she/her. 

                                              She is a proud Bramptonian and the Manager of Organizational Transformation in the Anti-Racism Directorate within the Ministry of Citizenship and Multiculturalism.

                                              Kerry-Ann has the privilege of leading the team responsible for identifying and addressing organizational and cultural systemic race barriers within the OPS, building anti-racism competency and capacity across the organization, in addition to supporting leaders as they navigate through their anti-racism leadership journey.

                                              She is a graduate from Ryerson University’s Human Resources Management Program with 15+ years of experience in Human Resources, Change Management, Learning and Development and most recently equity within both the private & public sectors. Before going to the ARD in June 2019, Kerry-Ann led technical and leadership development learning initiatives within the Ministry of Community and Social Services and served as a member of Board of Directors of AMAPCEO supporting educational and equity related portfolios.

                                              As a HR professional, an organizational educator and a change leader, Kerry-Ann thrives on designing innovative solutions that allow for people and organizations to navigate their way through the chaos, especially during times of change (whether those changes are operational, cultural or technological) - all under the guise of learning.

                                              Outside of her working hours, you will find her cheering on the Raptors as they look to reclaim their Championship title in 2024.

                                            • Kevin Yarde

                                              Guest Speaker: Kevin Yarde​


                                                Kevin Yarde was elected as the Member of Provincial Parliament for Brampton North in June 2018. 

                                                Kevin understands that our communities need and deserve good leadership that will bring change for the better to our neighbourhoods of Brampton North. He continues to be our champion at Queen’s Park to ensure affordability for Brampton North families through housing, integrating new Canadian into our economy, lower hydro rates and lower auto insurance rates.

                                                Kevin obtained a political science honours B.A. degree at York University and has made a name for himself as a weather expert on The Weather Network for over 17 years. Kevin has been involved with the National Association of Black Journalists and volunteered at Covenant House – helping at-risk and homeless youth.​

                                              • Kirk Mark

                                                Guest Speaker: Kirk Mark ​


                                                  ​Kirk Mark is a recent retiree as Senior Coordinator of the Community Relations Department in Toronto Catholic District School Board.  He has been involved in diversity programs in corporations, communities and schools for over thirty-five years with extensive travel to and consultation within the Caribbean, Europe, The Continent of Africa and the United States of America. 

                                                  His areas of expertise, while residing in the Provinces of Quebec and Ontario, are: Systemic Change Management, Development of Boards of Directors, Professional Learning, Equity and Inclusive Education, Culturally Relevant and Responsive Pedagogy, Student-Athletic Development, Parent and Community Capacity Development. 

                                                • Mark Harrison

                                                  Guest Speaker: Mark Harrison​


                                                    ​Founder, MH3 Group

                                                    Mark wants to change to world for the better. And with over 30 years of experience-driven sponsorship and marketing expertise, he has learned how strategically thoughtful storytelling can engage, influence, and motivate audiences in immeasurable ways.

                                                    A lifelong volunteer and entrepreneur, Mark is a passionate believer in purpose, be that brand purpose or encouraging people to be purposeful in everything that they do. Twenty-seven years ago, these beliefs lead Mark to create award-winning marketing agency, The T1 Agency, and global sponsorship conference, SponsorshipX.

                                                    More recently, Mark founded The MH3 Group, a group of ventures that span from advertising and sponsorship marketing to integrated communications and education, with each MH3 Group company sharing a collective consciousness that focuses on empowering people, promoting social equity, and reimagining a world where entrepreneurial passion and purpose comes to life.

                                                  • Michele Byrne

                                                    Guest Speaker: Michele Byrne​


                                                      ​Manager, Equity Office, City of Brampton

                                                    • Nitin Pardal

                                                      Guest Speaker: Nitin Pardal​


                                                        ​Nitin Pardal joined the City of Brampton on June 28, 2021 as a Senior Advisor, Human Rights.  He joins us from the Toronto Transit Commission where he worked at the Human Rights and Investigations Department for over five years. Nitin has extensive experience conducting workplace investigations and has a JD degree from the University of Ottawa and an LLM degree from Osgoode Hall Law School in Dispute Resolution.​

                                                      • Nosa Ero-Brown

                                                        Guest Speaker: Nosa Ero-Brown​


                                                          ​Assistant Deputy Minister, Ontario Anti-Racism Directorate

                                                        • Patrick Brown

                                                          Guest Speaker: Patrick Brown​


                                                            Mayor, City of Brampton​

                                                            Patrick Brown was elected Mayor of Brampton in October 2018 on a platform of getting Brampton back on track and receiving a fair deal from our provincial and federal governments.

                                                            Patrick was born in Toronto in 1978 of Irish and Italian descent. He graduated from St. Michael’s College, then studied political science at the University of Toronto and graduated with a law degree from the University of Windsor. He began his law practice in Brampton where his father Edmond has practiced for more than 40 years. Patrick’s mother Judy is a retired high school principal.

                                                            Patrick has had a long involvement in serving in government. He was first elected in 2000 as a Councillor in the City of Barrie. He served two terms on City Council before getting elected as the Member of Parliament. He was re-elected in 2008 by a landslide and 2011 by the largest margin in City of Barrie history. From 2006-2014 Patrick was the Chair of the Canada-India Parliamentary Association and he also served as Chair of the GTA Caucus from 2011-15.

                                                            In May 2015 Patrick was elected Leader of the Ontario PC Party. He became the Member of Provincial Parliament in September 2015 for the riding of Simcoe North. He served as Leader of the Official Opposition and Education Critic. Patrick’s focus in the provincial parliament was controlling sky rocketing hydro rates, enhancing mental health services, ending cash for access political donations and ensuring proper funding for autism support.

                                                            As Mayor of Brampton, Patrick is focused on creating the economic climate for new investment and jobs. Mayor Brown has added 86 new police officers to the Peel Regional Police as part of his plan to keep Brampton safe. Patrick will continue to fight for more funding for better healthcare, transit, affordable housing and education. With a very fast-growing youth and senior population, Patrick wants to expand the recreation facilities and programs so Bramptonians remain active. Mayor Brown and Council have passed two consecutive budgets with municipal tax freezes.

                                                            Patrick was recognized in 2013 with the Canadian Human Rights Voice Award for his role in exposing Tamil genocide. He was the first MP to talk about the Tamil genocide in the House of Commons.

                                                            Patrick organized Hockey Night in Barrie and since its inception 11 years ago, the game has raised more than $2 million for local charitable organizations. He has now started Hockey Night in Brampton to raise funds for the William Osler Health System Foundation. The first year raised an incredible $411,000.

                                                            Patrick and his wife Genevieve live in Downtown Brampton with their son Theodore. Patrick is also a best-selling author of the book Takedown: The Attempted Political Assassination of Patrick Brown released in November 2018.​

                                                          • Petra Wolfeiss

                                                            Guest Speaker: Petra Wolfeiss​


                                                              Petra Wolfbeiss is the Director of Membership for the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO). She has extensive experience in the municipal sector in various areas including building municipal capacity, strategy and policy development and governance. Petra’s experience also includes social work and teaching.

                                                              Petra is involved in leading AMO’s human rights and equity efforts including the “We All Win” campaign that is actively promoting diversity in municipal politics.​

                                                            • Quammie Williams

                                                              Guest Speaker: Quammie Williams​


                                                                Rudi Quammie Williams, project manager for the CIPAD feasibility study that was turned in to the Employment and Social Development Canada in the fall of 2020, is an independent consultant working in organizational development. Quammie is a mentor to youth, community businesses, organizations, and individuals. He is business consultant and facilitator with a passion for non-profits, community, entrepreneurship, and small business.

                                                                Quammie has a long history of service to the public through his work in various levels of government and in several communities serving organizations. In addition to his love of business and dedication to creating strong qualified leadership, sustainable community serving organizations and a community that embraces diversity, equity and inclusion and is free of anti-Black racism, Quammie is a multi-disciplinary artist who specializes in the use of arts and culture in African centred learning opportunities. He has dedicated his career to amongst other things the re-education of the African Canadian community on the value of their ancestral instrument, the drum. In addition to his study of African and Caribbean drumming traditions, Quammie is a graduate of York University’s Fine Arts and MBA Programs and has contributed his skills and knowledge of the drums to the music of Joe Sealy, Judy Mowatt, The Parachute Club, Martha and the Muffins, Dr. John, and many others. He is a co-founder of Usafiri, Sankofa, and Baro Dununba, three ensembles dedicated to educating and entertaining through the presentation of African and African Diaspora Music and Dance.​

                                                              • Richard Forward

                                                                Guest Speaker: Richard Forward​


                                                                  Commissioner: Planning, Building and Economic Development, City of Brampton

                                                                  With a passion for City-building, Richard’s approach to guiding community expansion and intensification programs focuses on making connections through common ground that attracts, excites and unites community partners and professionals about investment decisions.

                                                                  An avid humanitarian, as part of the clean water team for Global Medic, Richard has travelled to Pakistan, Iraq, Philippines, Eastern Ukraine, the Congo, Haiti and most recently Grand Bahamas to deliver aid and support to those affected by war or natural disaster. 

                                                                  Knowing the powerful and positive impact that people have when they are united around a shared cause, working together, sharing expertise, and delivering on a promise to positively contribute, Richard is well positioned to be part of guiding Brampton to implement Vision 2040.

                                                                • Richard Sharpe

                                                                  Guest Speaker: Richard Sharpe​


                                                                    ​Director, Equity, Anti-Racism, Diversity & Inclusion, Department of Justice Canada

                                                                    Richard has worked within the Canadian Federal Public Service for over 25 years. He is currently the Director of the Equity, Anti-racism, Diversity and Inclusion Leading the Anti-Racism and Anti-Discrimination Secretariat at the Department of Justice Canada where his work focusses on ensuring equity and inclusion for all equity seeking groups within the organization. Over the years, his work has involved leading initiatives in support of Government of Canada commitments to the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent. Richard is one of the founders of the Federal Black Employee Caucus that has been working with federal public service and union leadership to address anti-black racism in the federal public service. 

                                                                    Richard's work regionally, nationally and within the federal public service is intended to improve the condition of Black and African diaspora communities in Canada. Over the last few years Richard has been a speaker on addressing systemic racism, anti-black racism and how to be an ally within the Black Lives Matter movement.

                                                                  • Rob Ireland

                                                                    Guest Speaker: Rob Ireland​


                                                                      Senior Vice President, National Sector Lead, Financial and Professional Services

                                                                      With more than 27 years of relevant experience, Rob brings a uniquely wide and business-centric perspective to his engagements. He has led both international and regional marketing and communications teams for clients within many vertical industries such as technology, financial services, professional services, mining, public sector and real estate. Additionally, Rob is known for his functional expertise in public relations, international public affairs, crisis management and communications, corporate structuring, channel communications and relationship management, internal communications and sales force engagement. 

                                                                      As the Toronto-office lead for financial and professional services, Rob provides strategic counsel and program oversight to some of H+K Canada’s largest clients. He has specific working experience supporting schedule 1 banks, financial advisory and investment management, pension funds, alternative investments, international wealth management, fintech, legal and accounting. 

                                                                      As the national specialty expert for H+K’s Better Impact offering, Rob often works with corporate leaders at the C-Suite and Board of Director level on transformational issues that impact corporate reputation. Rob has been a strong advocate and a sought-after advisor on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues. Rob leads H+K’s AOR engagement with the BlackNorth Initiative.

                                                                      Previously–, Rob has been president of two Toronto-based public relations firms, Director of Executive and Internal Communications for HP Americas Region, Manager Corporate and Public Relations for HP Canada and Compaq Canada, and Manager of Corporate Affairs and Internal Communications for Xerox Canada. While at HP, Rob worked directly with Hill + Knowlton in both Canada and the US – forming a highly effective relationship that lasted throughout his 3-year corporate tenure.  Rob holds an Honours Bachelor of Science from Western University. 

                                                                    • Steve Anderson

                                                                      Guest Speaker: Steve Anderson​


                                                                        Steve is the Deputy Mayor for the Town of Shelburne and a Regional Councillor for the County of Dufferin. In addition, Steve is a practicing litigation lawyer with over 16 years with the Toronto Transit Commission where he was received a number of awards for his distinguished service. Steve has extensive community Board experience serving as the former Vice-President for the Ontario College of Kinesiology, Board Member with Prologue to the Performing Arts, Citizen Appointment for Community Care Access Centre (CCAC), Citizen Appointment for the City of Brampton task and currently serves as a Director for Defence Construction Canada.

                                                                        Among his personal accomplishments, Steve was proud to be named by the Toronto Star as one of the Top 50 Jamaicans in the GTA in 2013 and equally proud of his acknowledgement by the House of Commons for his community service also in 2013.

                                                                        Steve is a strong believer in family and is a proud father of 2 children Asia and Devante.

                                                                      • Supa D Meikle

                                                                        Guest Speaker: Supa D Meikle​


                                                                          Strategic Thinker & Creative Problem Solver with a unique blend of skills, achieving goals and delivering measurable results for great organizations.

                                                                          Personal Mantra: Listen, Learn, Lead. Be inspired and inspire others!

                                                                          High Performance Leader and Energetic Team Player. People working together can do almost anything. I enjoy working with people and on teams. I have learned that the happiest and most fulfilled people in life, are those who do what they love, do what they are great at and do what helps others.  I am a passionate team player who understands key internal and external objectives, influencing and gaining support to achieve goals.  I have strong experience leading and being part of amazing teams!  I bring an exciting background with me from both the public and private sector.  I believe in strong accountability for results – taking action and ownership to address obstacles and to overcome challenges, while carefully identifying solutions.  

                                                                        • Tiffany Callender

                                                                          Guest Speaker: Tiffany Callender​


                                                                            Community developer and social entrepreneur, Tiffany Callender has spent her 16 year career developing and implementing programs to support Montreal’s Black community. In addition to being the youngest female Executive Director of one of the oldest Black organizations in Quebec, she was recognized by MIPAD as one of the 100 most influential person of African-descent under 40 in 2020 and in 2021, Tiffany was a co-founder and inaugural CEO of the Federation of African Canadian Economics (FACE). 

                                                                            FACE, a coalition of Canadian Black business support organizations, that worked with the federal government to co-develop and now administers the $291.3 million Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund. She has presented recommendations for policy change to public institutions, notably as a signatory for Montreal’s consultation on racism and systemic discrimination as well as Quebec’s Laurent commission on the overrepresentation of Black children in the Youth Protection. 

                                                                            She also regularly presents sensitivity and equity training to private institutions. Her career is inspired by her personal life as she is a proud mother of three.​



                                                                          City of Brampton​​
                                                                          2 Wellington Street West
                                                                          Brampton, ON L6Y 4R2​