Partner and Ontario Consulting Practice Leader , Morneau Shepell
Nigel is a Partner at Morneau Shepell and is the Practice Leader of the Ontario Consulting Business.
Nigel is an experienced thought leader with a wide range of experience with plan design implementation and financial management, member education and communication, as well as integrated administration solutions.
An actuary with more than 20 years of experience providing strategic advice on pension plans and other benefit arrangements, Nigel serves as a trusted advisor to a large number of Morneau Shepell's clients. With a strong understanding of multiple lines of business, the industry, and our clients' businesses, he delivers responsive and forward-thinking solutions that best meet organizations' needs and objectives, while leveraging Morneau Shepell complete service offering.
Nigel is a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries and a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries. He has an Honours BSc in Actuarial Science and Mathematics from the University of Western Ontario. He is a regular author and industry speaker.
National Health and Safety Manager, Toys “R” Us Canada
Sonny Brar comes with over 13 years of Retail Health, Safety and Environment experience and is currently the National Health and Safety Manager for Toys“R”Us Canada. He is a honours graduate of Criminology, Justice and Public Safety from Manitoba and is active member of the Retail Council of Canada Safety Group Steering committee and sits on Canada’s Retail Health and Safety Committee . Sonny has also had great successes in his tenure in Health and Safety and has been a recipient of 3 Presidential Excellence Awards with Maple Leaf Foods and Toys“R”Us along with several H&S successes with his tenure at Sobeys and IKEA.
Director, Youth Initiatives, United Way Toronto and York Region
For the past 17 years Nation has dedicated his professional and personal time to supporting young people in communities across Toronto. He has played many roles throughout his career that have led to social, cultural and spiritual impact. He is a respected partnership builder, community animator and developer, artist, musician, teacher, and social change agent.
After 8 years at Dixon Hall serving the Regent Park community, Nation has helped to lead the Youth Challenge Fund (YCF), a 46.6 million dollar investment in youth led/ youth driven initiatives across Toronto’s inner suburban communities. The work focused on the needs of the city’s most underserved youth and led to the investment of 111 initiatives across the inner suburbs, including 17 legacy initiatives.
As United Way’s Director of Youth Initiatives he oversees the implementation of United Way’s Youth Success Strategy, working with the provincial and municipal government, private sector partners and community agencies to tackle the employment challenges that over 80,000 youth face in the GTA.
SVP - Human Resources, Loss Prevention & Customer Service, Town Shoes Limited
Kelly Davis is the Senior Vice President of HR, Loss Prevention & Customer Service for Town Shoes Limited (Town Shoes, The Shoe Company, Shoe Warehouse, Sterling and DSW Canada). She leads these three functions for the company’s 5 banners and 3000+ associates. Prior to joining Town Shoes Limited, she was the Vice President of People Development at Cara Operations (Milestones, Kelsey’s, Harvey’s, Montana’s and Swiss Chalet) where she worked with the corporate office and franchise partners to deliver HR services to the company’s 700+ restaurants and 30,000 associates. Kelly spent most of her career prior to joining Cara Operations with the Hudson’s Bay Company where she worked for over 12 years in a variety of progressive HR roles including leading the HR function for all Bay and Home Outfitters stores across Canada. Her last role with the Hudson’s Bay Company was in a more specialist function where she led Compensation, Benefits, Associate Relations and Services for the Hudson’s Bay Company in Canada and Lord & Taylor in the U.S. Kelly holds her B.A. from McGill University and her CHRE, CHRL and H.R.C.C.C. (Human Resources & Compensation Committee Certification) designations. Kelly is passionate about supporting not for profit organizations. She serves as a Board Director and Chair of the HR & Governance Committee for White Ribbon (the world’s largest movement of men and boys working to end violence against women and girls) and actively contributes to the HR Committee of the Board of Directors for Eva’s Initiatives and to the Leadership Committee of the Board of Directors for Big Brothers, Big Sisters Canada. Kelly is married with two sons and lives in Toronto.
Director of Human Resources and Organizational Effectiveness, Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety
Yvone Defreitas is the Director of Human Resources and Organizational Effectiveness at the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) where she is responsible for developing, implementing and monitoring the centers human resources plans and programs.
With over 15 years of experience in human resources management, Yvone provides the centre with council and expertise related to administration, management services, recruitment, performance management, training, development, compensation and benefits.
She’s a training and development skills-oriented instructor at Centennial College in Toronto, Ontario, and is a certified member of the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA).
President, Graff Retail
Kevin Graff is the President of Graff Retail, based in Toronto, Ontario. Since 1988, Graff Retail has specialized in working with retailers around the globe to increase their revenue through improved staff performance. For 27 years they have had the privilege of working with many of world’s best and brightest retailers.
Kevin is widely respected as one of North America’s best retail speakers and trainers and was recently chosen as one of the Top 50 Retail Influencers. His principle belief is that retailers are losing too many sales each day in their stores that they should be capturing. Kevin’s approach to store operations and his intense focus on real, bottom-line issues continually produce outstanding results. In fact, work he has completed for his retail clients has captured the Retail Council of Canada’s Award for Best Employee Development Programs on six separate occasions.
Kevin is also the creator of Graff Retail TV, the retail community’s leading source of online sales and management training. Since being launched in 2008, Graff Retail TV has provided thousands of sales associates and store management teams with the skills they need to succeed.
Chief Talent Strategist, Qwalify, former Talent Sourcing Leader, Starbucks
Phil started his career in executive search in the 90’s and then worked in talent acquisition at Sapient, Fannie Mae, Starbucks and Apple. He now works at Qwalify to help companies build brand-based recruiting strategies that help find, engage and recruit the talent that drives their business. His goal is to create a better candidate experience while connecting people with opportunity on a large scale. Phil is driven to challenge the status quo in HR technology and has enabled new platforms, mobile solutions and talent channels for his teams. He enjoys building programs and initiatives that transform how companies approach the talent marketplace. He has built global recruiting teams, centralized sourcing teams and created programs that target veterans and people with disabilities. Phil a member of the LinkedIn 100, an international group of professionals that steer LinkedIn's product development and improve its functionality. He's a founding member of the Advisory Council for GettingHired, a career portal for people with disabilities. Phil has been on the board of the Northwest Recruiting Association (NWRA) since 2011. Recruiting is about changing someone’s life for the better and it never gets old.
Author, Education and Training Facilitator, The 519
Jack Hixson-Vulpe is a Ph.D candidate at York University, an education and training facilitator at The 519 and author of The 519's Creating Authentic Spaces, gender identity and gender expression toolkit. His research focuses on Gay-Straight Alliances and inclusive policy in primary and middle schools. He has been invested in community activism and education work for over a decade and is a qualified primary school teacher.
Vice-President, Human Resources, Canadian Tire Corporation
Minal Kamath is the Vice-President of Human Resources Operations at Canadian Tire Corporation. She is responsible for overseeing the business’ critical human resources services and providing specialized expertise in the areas of talent acquisition, employee relations, total rewards, including executive compensation. Minal manages a team of over 75 human resources professionals that support over tens of thousands employees across the country.
Before joining Canadian Tire, Minal held positions with Bombardier and Sears Canada where she supported key priorities critical to the success of the business, such as cultural transformation, leadership review, employee engagement and training. She has also led training and workforce planning functions in the financial and public sectors.
Minal holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from York University in Toronto and has a Canadian Human Resource Certification.
Managing Partner, Founder, LEVEL5 Strategy Group
David Kincaid is among the most recognized and respected opinion leaders in the North American marketing industry. He is the Founder and Managing Partner of LEVEL5 Strategy Group, one of Canada’s leading strategic brand consultancies.
Prior to starting LEVEL5, David was Chief Marketing Officer at Corus Entertainment where he helped set the organization’s corporate vision, values and positioning. Before Corus, David was Senior Vice-President of Marketing and Director of Strategic Planning at Labatt Breweries of Canada, where he led the company’s expansion into the United States, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Cuba as well as the successful turnaround and launches of brands. Through the 80’s he worked at American Express and General Foods.
David is a frequent lecturer and speaker at some of Canada’s leading business conferences and schools and serves as an Adjunct Professor of Marketing at the Queen’s School of Business. In 2013, David was recognized by his industry peers when he was inducted into the American Marketing Association’s “Marketing Hall of Legends”.
Most recently, he has become a published business writer with the launch of his book – "The Value of a Promise Consistently Kept™".
Partner, Dentons Canada LLP
Anneli LeGault is a partner in the Toronto office of Dentons Canada LLP. Her employment law practice focuses on human resources policy issues, including employment agreements, human rights, pay equity, employment equity, reorganizations, outsourcing, secondments and terms and conditions of employment. As a member of Dentons’ Canadian Retail practice and its global Luxury, Fashion & Beauty practice, Anneli works with national and international retailers on a broad range of human resources management issues.
Anneli advises clients on Ontario's accessibility legislation, workplace harassment, and workplace violence regulations. Anneli also advises and represents a wide range of both federally and provincially regulated unionized and non-union clients on labour relations and employment law issues before various administrative tribunals, and advises clients on the administration of collective agreements, hiring and termination procedures and all facets of employment law. Working in close partnership with vendors and purchasers of corporate assets and shares, Anneli negotiates, drafts and reviews the employee and privacy-related terms of acquisition and sale agreements.
Anneli has co-authored Your Employment Standards Questions Answered – Federal and Provincial Guidance, 4th Edition, 6th Edition and 7th Edition. Anneli is widely recognized for her expertise by directories such as Best Lawyers in Canada, The Legal 500 Canada and The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory that rank her among the leading employment lawyers in Canada.
Area Human Resources Manager, H&M Canada
Wilfred Lumilan is the Area Human Resources Manager for H&M’s largest region. In this role Wilfred is responsible for the recruitment, engagement, training and development of employees in 31 stores (and growing!) and over 900 employees. He started his journey with H&M before the first store opened its doors in 2004. In his 10 years with H&M Wilfred has grown from a part-time Sales Advisor to a Store Manager of some of the Country’s largest volume stores, to a Business Analyst and now to Area HR Manager. Wilfred is famous for his infectious energy, his skill and efficiency in store operations and most importantly his ability to train and develop his colleagues. Will has trained and developed some of H&M’s current store leaders and recently travelled to San Francisco to deliver leadership training to H&M USA’s Senior Leadership Team.
EVP, Human Resources, Katz Group Rexall Pharma Plus
Brian joined Katz Group Canada in 2003 and has held his current position of Executive Vice President, Human Resources and Corporate Relations since 2006. He is responsible for Human Resources, Organizational Development and Training, Recruitment and Retention, Communications within the company. As President and Chair of the Rexall Foundation, Brian leads a team of passionate people dedicated to helping build strong and vibrant communities by supporting numerous charitable organizations. Prior to joining Katz Group Canada, Brian held several senior positions at TD Canada Trust in Information Technology, Operations and Development and was also the Vice President, Human Resources, at Money Foods North America
Program Support Manager, City of Toronto, Employment & Social Services
With broad experience in program development, management and oversight, Jennifer is responsible for a number of Workforce Development initiatives on behalf of the City, including the Partnership to Advance Youth Employment (PAYE).
Jennifer is a charismatic and public sector professional with exceptional leadership, decision-making, networking and communication skills. Over her 23 year career with the City, Jennifer has fostered relationships with a variety of stakeholders including leading private sector employers, civic and thought leaders and community based organizations She has successfully leveraged these partnerships to advance key initiatives such as poverty reduction and youth employment.
Collaborative by nature, Jennifer is always look for opportunities to tackle big issues in cooperative ways.
Vice-President, Partner Resources, Starbucks Coffee Canada
As vice-president, Partner Resources, Sara is responsible for leading Starbucks Canada’s partner (employee) experience and integrated talent management initiatives. Under her leadership, a team of HR business partners support more than 17,000 partners (employees) in over 1,000 retail locations and regional offices across Canada. A 12-year Starbucks partner, Sara has been instrumental helping significantly grow the Canadian business during her tenure.
With more than 15 years of human resources experience, Sara has been a vocal champion for Starbucks values and culture and has helped the company achieve external recognition from Best Workplaces in Canada and Canada’s Top 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures. She has is an active ambassador for women and is launching a Women’s Development Network, is a member of the advisory council for the Ryerson School of Retail Management and mentors youth with the Yonge Street Mission.
Sara holds a Masters of Psychology from Wilfrid Laurier University and is a Certified Human Resources Professional (CHRP).
Vice President, Human Resources, The Home Depot Canada
Aliana Rozenek is vice president, human resources, communications and sustainability with The Home Depot Canada leading human resources, public relations, internal communications, community affairs, learning and sustainable operations across the Canadian division.
Aliana joined The Home Depot in 2014. She leads the human resources functions across 180 stores, the store support centre and distribution centres and ensures that The Home Depot’s business strategies reflect the company’s values. She also plays a key role in overseeing internal and external communications, leading The Home Depot Foundation, which is committed to helping put an end to youth homelessness, and advancing the company’s sustainable initiatives.
Prior to joining The Home Depot Aliana held the position of chief human resources officer at MTS Allstream as well as senior human resources and labour relations positions at CIBC, Sobeys Canada, Allied Signal Aerospace Canada and Bata Limited.
Aliana enjoys travelling and gardening but is most passionate about her family including husband Josef and daughter Ariela.
Aliana studied industrial relations and holds a diploma of collegial studies in biological sciences from McGill University in Montreal.
Senior Vice President, Retail & Chief Human Resources Officer, Best Buy Canada
As Senior Vice President, Retail and Chief Human Resources Officer for Best Buy Canada, Kamy Scarlett is accountable for sales and profits in over 180 stores across Canada, in addition to enacting the human resources and talent management strategies for the company.
Kamy began her career in retail over 30 years ago, starting with a role at the Hudson’s Bay Company. She has harnessed invaluable experience in both line and support functions, for iconic Canadian retailers such as Dylex, Hudson’s Bay, Loblaws, Grafton Fraser and now Best Buy Canada.
Often referred to as a ‘unicorn’ for her uniquely defined experiences in retail, Kamy’s background has included such roles as VP of Retail at the Bay, and SVP of Marketing for Hudson’s Bay Company and its four banners, as well as serving as the SVP of Talent Management at Loblaw. In her role at Best Buy Canada, Kamy brings a wealth of knowledge, a strong leadership mentality, and an acute skillset to lead her teams.
Known for her passion for people and ability to lead cultural transformation, Kamy believes the qualities that lead to successful change are the same qualities that make a strong leader. Enacting the willingness to change requires a culture that’s based on faith in leadership and firmly rooted in open strategy and transparent communication. Kamy helps to embody this message of trust and relay it to her teams, remaining firm on the idea that people only fear change when they don't understand or trust the intention behind it.
Founder & CEO, Clearfit
Jamie is the Founder and CEO of Clearfit, the leader in performance insights. Clearfit’s patented performance insights engine delivers the critical missing information that empowers leaders to consistently select, develop, and promote top talent.
He believes job performance depends on people working in roles in which they are built to succeed. He has long been an advocate of creating a world where the right people are in the right jobs, resulting in happier employees and more productive organizations.
Jamie has spent over 20 years building companies like Procter & Gamble, and Rogers Communications, along with several technology start-ups.
Jamie has a Commerce Degree from the University of British Columbia and an MBA from Harvard.
He currently lives in Toronto, Canada, with his wife and two children.
Vice President, Salesforce Canada
Senior Principal, Korn Ferry Hay Group
Carina has a unique combination of Rewards, Executive Compensation and Organizational Effectiveness experience, specifically in rewards and compensation strategy design, organizational design and talent management combined with deep industry expertise in Retail and CPG industries, and technical expertise in job evaluation, pay structures and incentive design and competitive benchmarking.
Prior to joining Hay Group, Carina worked for private and public sector organizations, such as British American Tobacco, HDS Retail North America, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, Katz Group Canada (Rexall family of pharmacies) and Sofina Foods.
Director, David Sobey Centre for Innovation in Retailing and Services, Sobey School of Business
Ramesh Venkat is the Director of the David Sobey Centre for Innovation in Retailing and Services at the Sobey School of Business. He was previously Associate Dean and Director of MBA Program at the Sobey School of Business, Saint Mary’s University.
Ramesh’s research expertise is in customer experience and engagement and brand strategy. Ramesh is the author the book “E-Marketing: A Strategic Approach” (by McGraw-Hill) and has a forthcoming book on Customer Engagement (by Springer). Ramesh is also founder and president of CeQuotia Consulting, which provides customer experience measurement and analytics solutions. Ramesh holds an MBA degree Simon Fraser University and a Ph.D. in Marketing from the University of British Columbia, Canada.
Dr. David Weiss
President & CEO, Weiss International Ltd.
Dr. David S. Weiss, ICD.D, CHRE is the author of six bestselling business books including “Innovative Intelligence” and “Leadership Driven HR.” David is the President & CEO of Weiss International Ltd. a Toronto-based firm specializing in innovation, leadership and HR strategic consulting. Previously, David was an affiliate professor at the Rotman School of Management and Chief Innovation Officer in a multi-national consulting firm. He has been honored by many organizations globally including by the Asia Pacific HR Congress with the “HR Leadership Award,” by HR Israel “HR Distinction Award,” by HRPA with the lifetime designation as “Fellow” member, and by the Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario with the “Distinguished Lecturer” certificate. David has delivered over two hundred conference presentations and has written over fifty journal and trade articles. David has conducted executive sessions in Canada, USA, China, Russia, Israel, Uganda, South Africa, Malaysia, Chile, Hungary, Paris and England on his innovative ideas and its practical applications. For more information see www.weissinternational.ca.