Speakers 2017-05-09T11:20:02+00:00

Morning Keynote

Marc Miller

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Infrastructure & Communities

Marc Miller is the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities and the MP for Ville-Marie—Le Sud-Ouest—Île-des-Sœurs. Until this year, Mr. Miller was the Chair of the Quebec Liberal Caucus. From Montreal, Marc graduated from McGill University and the Université de Montréal and prior to being elected, he practised law in mergers and acquisitions.

Marc Miller est secrétaire parlementaire du ministre de l’Infrastructure et des Collectivités et député de Ville-Marie—Le Sud-Ouest—Île-des-Sœurs. Jusqu’à cette année, M. Miller était président du Caucus libéral du Québec. Natif de Montréal, il est diplômé de l’Université McGill et de l’Université de Montréal, et il pratiquait le droit dans le domaine des fusions et acquisitions avant d’être élu.

Keynote Speaker

David Graham

Deputy Chief Operating Officer – Neighbourhood Services,
City of San Diego

David Graham is a veteran local government advisor having worked for the County of San Diego and the City of San Diego as well as a stint in private sector public affairs. Serving on Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s Executive Leadership team as DCOO for the Office of Neighborhood Services, he oversees a group of departments including Libraries, Parks & Recreation, Development Services, Economic Development, Planning and the Arts and Culture Commission.

Graham has worked for several San Diego Mayors and has represented the City on planning and civic innovation initiatives including Smart City San Diego, CleanTECH San Diego, Envision America and the national MetroLab Network. His smart cities work includes the first all-electric car-share fleet in North America, an open-data platform for development permitting, a partnership with GE to deploy sensors in LED enabled smart streetlights and using technology to achieve municipal climate change goals.

Representing the City as a core team member, Graham was instrumental in developing the region’s Go Global strategy and represents the City on the Global Cities Initiative, a partnership of Brookings and JPMorgan Chase. His passion for land use, civic engagement and intelligent infrastructure has led him to be a regular speaker from the metropolitan perspective on these issues including Bloomberg Philanthropies City Innovators Summit, Globe 12, Minds + Machines, Connected Futures, City Innovate Summit, CityAge and VERGE.


Justin Trevan

Associate Principal, Digital Consulting Leader Canada, Arup & Co-Chair, Smart Cities Working Group

Justin is an Associate Principal at Arup with a specialization in Technology Consulting. He leads the Digital business for Canada and is based in the Toronto office.  He works with clients across many different industry sectors, but with particular focus on cities and transportation.  He is also co-chair of the Toronto Region Board of Trade Smart Cities Working Group which is working to establish a formal smart city agenda in the GTHA.

Panel Speaker

Carl Bodimeade 

Senior Vice President Business Development, Hatch 

Carl is Senior Vice President of Hatch Infrastructure, responsible for strategy and business development. He has over 35 years of experience in project management, engineering and planning for a wide range of projects in the urban infrastructure, brownfield development, water and power sectors.

Carl is currently a member of the City of Toronto / Toronto Region Board of Trade’s Smart City Working Group, the role and activities of which are the subject of this panel. As a past member of the Board of Trade’s Infrastructure Committee, Carl helped develop policy positions and advocated for the strong infrastructure important to the GTA’s economic competitiveness. He was the long-time chair of the Ontario Coalition for Sustainable Infrastructure and was a member of the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure’s Global Committee.

Carl is regularly invited to moderate and participate in expert panels on subjects such as infrastructure funding, the value of water, sustainability and urban resiliency. He has also contributed to several thought-leadership reports on water and urban sustainability.

Panel Speaker

Mike Williams

General Manager, Economic Development & Culture Division
City of Toronto

Mike’s main responsibilities include the implementation of the City’s Economic Development Strategy, Collaborating for Competitiveness, and its Culture Plan, Creative Capital Gains. He also sits on the boards of a number of local agencies and Corporations connected to the City of Toronto, and in a volunteer capacity, the board of George Brown College. Before joining the City in 2009, Mike spent the majority of his career in general management, research, marketing and consulting, locally and internationally.

Mike has an M.A. in Urban Geography and is a Certified Management Consultant (C.M.C.).

He can be contacted at Mike.Williams@toronto.ca

Panel Speaker

Rob Meikle

Chief Information Officer
City of Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Rob Meikle is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the City of Toronto. In his role as CIO, Rob provides visionary leadership for the delivery of flexible and integrated information and communication technology solutions that enable and drive Service Excellence.

Rob is a strategic business leader who is innovative and results driven with a proven track record of 20+ years experience planning, developing, and implementing award winning global business and technology solutions in the private, public and not for profit sector.

He has received globally recognition for his visionary leadership and ability to maximize the potential of teams to achieve transformational results.

Rob became the first Canadian municipal CIO to be named on the prestigious global CIO 100 honoree list. In addition, he has received the Global Computerworld Premier 100 IT Leadership Award and the National Government (GTEC) Next Generation Leadership Award.

Prior to the City of Toronto Rob was the Chief Information Officer at the City of Brampton and has held various leadership roles in the private sector including Global Operations, Customer Service, Marketing, eBusiness and Information Technology.

Rob is a graduate of the University of Waterloo and holds an Honours BMath in Computer Science & Business Administration. He holds a Masters Certificate – IT Executive Leadership Development from Ryerson University.

Panel Speaker

Sara Diamond

President of OCAD University

Dr. Sara Diamond is the President of OCAD University, Canada’s “university of the imagination”. She holds a PhD in Computing, Information Technology and Engineering, a Masters in Digital Media and Honours Bachelors of Arts in History and Communications. Diamond is an internationally celebrated data visualization, wearable technology, mobile media researcher, media artist, designer and historian. She is an appointee of the Order of Ontario and the Royal Canadian Society of Artists and a recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for service to Canada.  She is the winner of the 2013 GRAND NCE Digital Media Pioneer Award.  Diamond served on the 2011-2012 Council of the Canadian Academies’ expert panel on the State of Science & Technology in Canada.  She founded the Mobile Experience Innovation Centre; was co-principal investigator of the Centre for Information Visualization/Data Driven Design; theme leader for Data Visualization for iCity which focused on Big Data and transportation, is a member of the BRAIN Alliance, in visual analytics.  She has held funding from the Social Science and Humanities Research Council, Canada Foundation for Innovation, MITACS, the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council, Ontario Centres for Excellence and the Canada Council for the Arts. She is a member of the Council of Ontario Universities executive and sits on not-for-profit boards, including Baycrest, and ORION. She is the Chair of the Toronto Nuit Blanche Advisory Committee.  In 2014 Toronto Life named her as one of Toronto’s most influential individuals.  She currently serves on the Toronto Regional Board of Trade and City of Toronto Smart City working group.


Steve Van Binsbergen

Senior Director, Ontario Public Sector, Rogers

Steve Van Binsbergen leads the Connected Communities initiative nationally and the Public Sector business in Ontario.  For over 25 years in the technology industry, Steve has worked to bring together innovative solutions to meet specific customer needs.  He’s had a broad range of roles, including sales, marketing, brand, engineering and executive leadership.

Prior to Rogers, Steve ran his own company called Kubos Transformations, focusing on transforming go-to-market strategies for clients.  Before founding Kubos, he was Vice President, Channel Strategy & Performance at Telus; Vice President and General Manager, Computing Systems at Celestica; and held consulting roles at Accenture and Courtyard Group.

Steve has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Waterloo, a MBA from Queen’s University and is a Professional Engineer.

Panel Speaker

Dr. Patricia McCarney

Director, Global Cities Institute, University of Toronto
President & CEO, World Council on City Data

Patricia McCarney is President and CEO of the World Council on City Data (WCCD) and is a Professor of Political Science and the Director of the Global Cities Institute at the University of Toronto, Canada.

Professor Patricia McCarney received her Ph.D. from M.I.T. in 1987. She has served as Associate Vice President, International Research and Development at the University of Toronto.

Before joining the University of Toronto, between 1983 and 1994, Professor McCarney worked as a professional staff member in a number of international agencies, including the World Bank in Washington, and the United Nations – HABITAT in Nairobi.

Leading the World Council on City Data, Patricia McCarney is building a globally standardized data base for cities worldwide inviting cities worldwide to build city data in conformity with ISO 37120. As host of this new knowledge platform, the WCCD is positioned to be the leading global city data base with standardized, verified, comparable and open city data.

Panel Speaker

Dave Telka

Managing Director in Accenture’s Health & Public Service Practice

Dave Telka is a Managing Director in Accenture’s Health & Public Service Practice. He leads Accenture Digital across all levels of government within Canada. Dave is a committed and passionate leader, focused on working with public service clients on their digital transformation. Dave is known for bringing perspectives and solutions to a wide array of public sector clients on the intersection of technology, data and insights, and digital services to enhance outcomes for both citizens and employees.

Dave strongly believes that continuous transformational change is required for evolving organizational effectiveness, as witnessed by the success of organizations that learn to adopt and leverage next-generation digital solutions. Over his 21-year career with Accenture, Dave has consulted extensively across both private and public industries, helping Accenture’s clients with their most complex transformational initiatives, technology adoption, digital solutions and workforce strategies.

Dave leverages his Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Carleton to apply the core concepts of human-centred design in the innovation and creation of services and solutions for some of Accenture’s largest clients in Canada. Dave is active across a number of community organizations such as the United Way, Military Family Services and the Toronto Region Board of Trade. He is taught many life lessons while coaching his two young children in soccer, hockey and piano.

Panel Speaker

Birgit Kredel

Corporate Vice President, Siemens AG, Munich

Birgit Kredel is Corporate Vice President of Siemens AG at the global Headquarters in Munich. Since October 2016 she is Head of Siemens One and Head of the Global Center of Competence for Cities & Smart Urban Development in London, overseeing business development in 106 cities worldwide, focusing on
intelligent infrastructure in the domains of Buildings, Energy and Transportation.

Mrs. Kredel is also Member of the Corporate Sales Board, Siemens AG.  With 22-years of experience in business development, key account management, project and program management Birgit has a strong record of driving growth in large, global businesses in the Oil& Gas, Power Utilities, Information Technology and Telecommunications Industries for  Siemens. Having worked in Europe, Asia and Americas she is a truly global player, being highly effective in leading cross-functional and cross-cultural teams.  In her studies she earned her master’s in International Management and Marketing at the University of Paderborn (Germany), St. Olaf College (USA) and the Pacific Lutheran University (USA).


Omar A. Rashid

Lead for City of Toronto, Microsoft Canada Inc.

Omar is responsible for managing Microsoft’s relationship with the City of Toronto and its Agencies, Boards and Commissions. He speaks regularly in-country and abroad on the intersection of technology, politics and public policy, the use of social media in government and how Information & Communication Technologies (ICT) can be used to drive public engagement and participation, improve public safety outcomes, increase cultural awareness and optimize citizen service.

Omar graduated the University of Waterloo in 1995 earning an Honours Bachelor Degree of Science (with a specialization in Chemistry) and has been with Microsoft for 22 years. Outside of work, Omar volunteers with the Muslim Association of York Region and speaks regularly to community members on the necessity and virtues of civic participation and public service.

Born in Parkdale and raised in Scarborough, Omar and his wife Zarina currently reside in Thornhill and are the proud parents of three boys, Isa (13), Adam (10) and Zakariya (2).


Tom Rand

Managing Partner, MaRS and ArcTern Ventures

After a number of years as a successful software entrepreneur Tom now focuses his efforts on carbon mitigation. He’s active in Cleantech venture capital, technology incubation & commercialization and public advocacy. Tom is Managing Partner of ArcTern Ventures, a Senior Advisor at the MaRS Discovery District and sits on the board of a number of clean energy companies and organizations. Tom also developed Planet Traveler, a low-carbon hotel project in downtown Toronto. Tom’s first book Kick the Fossil Fuel Habit was published in early 2010 (winner of the 2011 Whitepine Non-Fiction award) and his second book (Waking the Frog) became a bestseller in Spring 2014.

It is his belief that we have yet to have a serious, public conversation about the threat of climate change, and the economic opportunities afforded by the global transformation to a low-carbon economy. Tom holds a BSc in electrical engineering (U of Waterloo), an MSc in philosophy of science (University of London and LSE) and an MA and PhD in philosophy (U of Toronto). He is an Action Canada Fellow and was recently appointed to the Government of Ontario’s Climate Action Group. In addition, Tom is a regular contributor on Canada’s leading op-ed pages and is a regular contributor on CBC’s On the Money.

Panel Speaker

Bilal Khan

Founding Managing Director of OneEleven

Bilal Khan is the Founding Managing Director of OneEleven, a post-seed technology accelerator focused on helping Canada’s most promising, highgrowth start-ups commercialize their technologies and scale their operations. OneEleven is a unique partnership between industry, venture capital, government and academia with the objective of making Canada a global leader in the innovation economy. Bilal is a Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto where he advises on innovation policy and is also a Fellow at the Brookfield Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Ryerson University. Prior to joining OneEleven, Bilal was the Director of Policy and Senior Advisor to three consecutive Minister’s of Economic Development, Trade and Innovation for the Province of Ontario where he was responsible for establishing and implementing policies to help advance Ontario’s economy. A lawyer, Bilal spent his early career practicing corporate and securities law as Legal Counsel to Russell Investments, a U.S. based multi-asset manager (acquired by the London Stock Exchange Group). Bilal has also worked at the United Nations at the Centre for Business and Human Rights.

Bilal sits on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Club of Toronto, the Business Advisory Group of the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan (ORPP), the Advisory Board of IBM’s I^3 Project (an IBM Watson initiative), the Advisory Board of the Canadian Innovation Exchange (CIX), and the Advisory Board of Technicity at the City of Toronto. Bilal is an alumnus of Singularity University at the NASA Ames Research Centre California in the area of exponential technologies and holds a JD from the University of Windsor, Faculty of Law.

Panel Speaker

Mike Cotton

Director of Zone Startups Sports & Media, Ryerson Futures

Mike Cotton is a sports business executive and currently serves as Director of Zone Startups Sports & Media at Ryerson Futures, Canada’s first sports and media accelerator. Situated on the campus of Ryerson University in the heart of Toronto, Ryerson Futures operates a network of accelerator programs under the brand Zone Startups. Here, Mike helps provide companies with working space at its Toronto headquarters, giving access to advisors, customers, and corporate clients to give them additional distribution channels for their products and services. Mike takes signals from partners and stakeholders to scout technologies and companies according to their business priorities.

Prior to his work with Zone Startups, Mike managed analytics, marketing, and business operations for the Saint John Sea Dogs of the Canadian Hockey League, and created hockey analytics materials for multiple National Hockey League teams. He also worked for SportsNet New York, Major League Soccer, and as a media-accredited member of the New York Rangers.

Prior to working in the sports industry, Mike served as an economist for the Canadian Federal Government. He has a Bachelor of Arts, Economics from Queen’s University, a Master of Arts, Economics from McMaster University, and a Masters of Sports Business from New York University.

Panel Speaker

Kristina Verner

Vice President, Innovation, Sustainability and Prosperity for Waterfront Toronto

Kristina Verner is the Vice President, Innovation, Sustainability and Prosperity for Waterfront Toronto, where she is responsible for a variety of strategic initiatives for one of the world’s preeminent urban revitalization projects. Her portfolio includes the digitalization of the urban experience, sustainability and resiliency priorities, as well as the economic development and partnership engagement aspects of the organization.

She is active both nationally and internationally in the intelligent community movement. In 2014, she lead the City of Toronto bid to be named the Intelligent Community of the Year.

In 2012, she was honoured to receive the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for her leadership and commitment to the creation of intelligent communities and collaborative ecosystems that support the transparent, connected, vibrant communities and economies that will foster national prosperity.

Panel Speaker

Gabe Sawhney

Executive Director, Code for Canada

Gabe Sawhney is a designer, creative technologist and innovation strategist. Gabe design and technology to address civic, creative and business challenges. He is the co-founder of Civic Tech Toronto, and the Executive Director of Code for Canada, a nonprofit which enables civic tech and digital government.