Speakers

Adri Bravo

Adri Bravo

Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity

Adri Bravo (Pronouns: she/her) is the Intimate Partner Violence Prevention Coordinator at the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity. She travels across Canada promoting awareness of 2SLGBTQ intimate partner violence and facilitates workshops for service providers to increase capacity and better support survivors. Adri received her Bachelor of Arts in History from Kent State University before working for the U.S. government as a civil rights investigator and conciliator. When she isn’t advocating for social, economical, and political justice, Adri enjoys running, gardening, and traveling.

Alex Legendre

Alex Legendre

Policy Analyst, GBA+ Centre of Expertise, Strategic Policy Divisions, Service Innovation and Integration Branch

Canada Revenue Agency

Alex has been working at the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) for over 12 years, starting in 2007 as a junior analyst with the Corporate Tax Administration for Ontario project. Moving on to Policy work for the following 5 years, Alex provided guidance to Provincial and Territorial government departments on requirements for the sharing of personal taxpayer data and negotiated numerous Memoranda of Understanding. After a brief 2 year assignment in Toronto in support of the Ontario Region’s Director of Programs, Alex returned to the National Capital Region to take on the role of lead analyst for the CRA on Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA+). Alex now provides support services to program areas across the Agency, providing guidance and advice to ensure programs, services, and policies are inclusive and sensitive to the diverse needs of Canadians.

Colleen Goggin

Director, Evaluation and Advisory Services

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Colleen Goggin is the Director of Evaluation and Advisory Services at the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency. Working at ACOA since 2011, she works with a brilliant team of evaluation professionals to ensure that the Agency meets the evaluation requirements set out in Treasury Board Secretariat’s Policy on Results and the Federal Accountability Act. These requirements include applying a GBA+ lens to planning, conducting and reporting on the results of federal government programming evaluations. Colleen has a keen interest in GBA+, having started her career as a public health nutritionist and working primarily with women and families living on fixed incomes. She spent 10 years with Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada working on files related to women, food insecurity and HIV/AIDs. Colleen has a BSc in Human Ecology (Dietetic Internship) from Mount Saint Vincent University and a MHSc in Community Nutrition from University of Toronto. She lives in Dartmouth, NS where she enjoys hanging out with her teenaged daughters, local food and culture, and catching the ferry for Halifax to get to the office.

Deborah Simpson

Deborah Simpson

Manager of Program Impact, International Programs

Oxfam Canada

Deborah Simpson is the Manager, Program Impact for Oxfam Canada. She has over 25 years’ experience in the international development sector, including both as an academic and a practitioner. She has extensive research experience focused on South African Civil Society and Church responses to HIV&AIDS in South Africa. She also has a background in Feminist Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning, with Oxfam Canada and with the Evaluation Unit of the International Development Research Centre.

Dr. Sarah Viehbeck

Dr. Sarah Viehbeck

Ph.D., Associate Vice President, Research Programs - Strategy

Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

Dr. Sarah Viehbeck is the Associate Vice-President, Research Programs Strategy at CIHR. In this role, Dr. Viehbeck is responsible for all science-related strategy and policy development. She also leads the design of a comprehensive suite of programs and initiatives to support CIHR’s mandate, with a priority focus on growing and maintaining a strong and sustainable Canadian health research workforce. Prior to this role, Sarah was Head of Governance Renewal at the Agency and, in this capacity, led an agency-wide change and continuous improvement agenda to clarify decision-making processes and structures and CIHR’s Head Performance Measurement where she played an instrumental leadership role in the implementation of the Government of Canada’s Policy on Results. Sarah has offered leadership for strategic activities related to performance measurement and evaluation, population and public health ethics, knowledge translation, international partnerships, and Indigenous health research. Sarah is a member of the Canadian Evaluation Society and graduate of the International School on Research Impact Assessment. Through her role as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Waterloo’s School of Public Health and Health Systems and the University of Ottawa’s Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, Sarah maintains a research program and is engaged in teaching. Sarah is a proud mother and volunteers as a Board member of the National Collaborating Centre for Determinants of Health and as President of her neighbourhood’s Community Association Board.

Geoff Dubrow

Geoff Dubrow

Consultant

In February 2018, Geoff Dubrow chaired and facilitated Infonex’s inaugural GBA+ conference. An experienced, high energy facilitator, Geoff has worked with a wide range of stakeholders including parliamentarians, civil servants at all levels and civil society organizations. Geoff applies a variety of tried and true techniques to make participants feel engaged and willing to share.

Geoff is also a governance expert with over 15 years of experience in strengthening gender equality. Geoff has recently led several GBA+ analyses for the Government of Canada. This has included: identifying population groups that could be both positively and negatively impacted by proposed government policies; proposing strategies to address those impacts; and identifying methods to monitor these strategies and emerging gender impacts throughout policy or program implementation. Geoff’s experience also includes developing, monitoring and evaluating gender equality strategies for international development programs in Africa, the Caribbean and Eastern Europe. As a monitor for Global Affairs Canada’s public financial programs in the Caribbean, Geoff provides strategic advice to the Department on how executing agencies can strengthen and track the integration of gender equality into technical assistance programming.

Grégoire J.F. Laforce

Grégoire J.F. Laforce

Adult Learning Facilitator

Grégoire is a former officer in the Royal Canadian Air Force. In 2016, he began volunteering for I Can MANifest Change, a project of the Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women (OCTEVAW). The goal of this project was to bring men onboard in ending gender based violence by helping them to become more gender aware, to develop a solid understanding of consent, build their skills as allies, and learn how to support victims of gender based violence. This early work later led to Greg working with the Canadian Armed Forces Strategic Response Team on Sexual Misconduct, where he was in charge of training gender based violence prevention workshop facilitators, and developing new engaging material to catalyze the Forces’ culture change initiative.

Greg has since left the military to spend more time with his two year-old daughter, and is currently a freelance adult learning facilitator, having recently taught GBA+ courses to Global Affairs Canada, the Ottawa Police Service, Gatineau Police, and other parts of the Federal Public Service.

In his free time, Greg can often be seen leading wild kitchen dance parties with the family that he adores.

Karla Cote

Karla Cote

Issue Strategist

City of Calgary

Karla Cote has 10 years of experience working in municipal government and currently is an Issue Strategist with The City of Calgary. Her work primarily involves developing strategies to respond to emerging (or persistent) social needs in Calgary. Recently she has led the development of a new social policy that includes a focus on the delivery of equitable services. She is supporting the introduction of GBA+ to advance equity in planning and decision making in city service delivery.  Karla holds a Master of Social Work degree from Wilfrid Laurier University where her studies focused on social policy. Karla has extensive experience in the areas of community development and civic engagement. Previous to The City, she worked to support immigrants and refugees both in Calgary and abroad.

Kathleen Lahey

Professor and Queen's National Scholar, Faculty of Law

Queen's University

Kathleen Lahey is Professor and Queen’s National Scholar, Faculty of Law, Queen’s University, Co-director, Feminist Legal Studies Queen’s, cross-appointed to Queen’s Gender Studies, and affiliated faculty, Queen’s Cultural Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Program. She is a member of the Ontario and Illinois bars, Associate member, Garden Court Chambers, UK, sits on the boards of the UK-based Tax Justice Network and the steering committee of its global parent, the Global Alliance for Tax Justice, and specializes in tax, corporate, gender, international tax, property, and human rights law.

Her current research revolves around three core questions: Until substantive equality of outcomes for all individuals can be attained, how can societies eliminate deeply- rooted structural inequalities and discriminatory practices? How can the power and wealth concentrated in global ‘north’ corporations and individuals through unequal property, political, tax, and budget laws be replaced with redistributive programs that maintain individual sustain/abilities throughout life? And, what truths arise from Indigenous and diverse peoples’ living knowledges and learnings about how to match rates of human innovation and development with the evolutionary rates of other members of the biosphere in order to increase the sustain/abilities of all forms of life?

She has pursued these questions while on numerous government commissions, while meeting with and advising governments, civil society, academic groups in Canada, across China and on every continent, as well as when working with the European Parliament, EU governments, the UN and other treaty bodies, international financial institutions, and with Indigenous, circumpolar Arctic, human rights, and diverse peoples’ organizations, watching and learning how to expand current research and dissemination methods capable of addressing these increasingly urgent issues

Marcie Hawranik

Marcie Hawranik

Founder and President

Canadian Equality Consulting

Marcie is the founder of Canadian Equality Consulting; an Alberta-based company that supports workplaces to become leaders in gender equity, diversity and inclusion. Marcie has a Master’s degree in international relations from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University in New York focused on conflict resolution, a Bachelor (Hons) degree in Political Studies, and extensive experience in gender analysis, gender mainstreaming, diversity and inclusion, policy and program development, and stakeholder engagement.

Marcie also co-hosts a podcast called “(ex)clusion,” an exploration of all things equity, diversity and inclusion.

A few highlights of Marcie’s work include:

  • Speaking on Alberta’s advancements towards gender equality to the United Nations Panel on Business and Human Rights and to the World Bank;
  • Creating the new Alberta Status of Women ministry;
  • Designing consultation and engagement strategies for non-governmental organizations at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva;
  • Leading the prep and organization for the Government of Canada at the United Nations Human Rights Council during the review of Canada’s human rights record;
  • Designing and implementing “Co-Action” (collective action) sessions, bringing together stakeholders on an issue and facilitating a discussion to develop an action plan to create positive change (topics included: the recruitment, retention and advancement of women in STEM fields; preventing, ending and healing violence against girls, etc…);

In 2019, Marcie was recognized by UN Women as a “SHE Innovator” and in 2018, she won the Premier’s Award of Excellence for her innovative work to advance gender equality in Alberta.

Melanie Omeniho

Melanie Omeniho

President

Women of the Metis Nation

Melanie Omeniho is a descendent of the historical Métis community of Lac Ste Anne and is a proud member of the Métis Nation of Alberta.  As a young person, Melanie attended meetings and assemblies alongside her mother and other strong Métis women role models who set the stage in creating spaces for Métis women’s voices to be heard. Her political and advocacy career led her to play a role in the development and incorporation of Les Femmes Michif Otipemisiwak (LFMO) and to her four terms as President, elected by Métis women across the homeland. Melanie has been the President of Edmonton Métis Local 1886 for nearly thirty years.  She is also a former President of Women of the Métis Nation in Alberta.

Melanie has extensive experience in the areas of community development, social programming, family and children services and Economic Development.   She has developed many community programs and advocates on behalf of her community and Métis women to effect changes to the various social programs to better meet the needs of the Indigenous community.

Melanie plays an integral role in Métis Nation governance.  She sits on the Board of Governors of the Métis Nation as a non-voting member, while ensuring consistently that the interests of Métis women are considered in every decision.  She also played a key role in the development of Métis Nation priorities to be addressed at the Permanent Bilateral Mechanism table between the Métis Nation and Canada. Melanie has acted on behalf of the Métis Nation on several critical matters as they relate to the duty to consult and engage.

Natalie Appleyard

Natalie Appleyard

Socio-economic Policy Analyst

Citizens for Public Justice

Natalie Appleyard is the Socio-Economic Policy Analyst for Citizens for Public Justice (CPJ), an organization “inspired by faith to act for justice”. CPJ seeks to equip and mobilize communities and individuals across the country to advocate for just policies in the areas of poverty, refugee rights, and ecological justice. Natalie uses her background in education to help convene and share knowledge with a variety of stakeholders. She is a member of the Steering Committees for Campaign 2000 and the Canadian Poverty Institute and represents CPJ as a co-lead of the Dignity for All campaign.

Nataliia Stepaniuk

Nataliia Stepaniuk

Senior Policy Analyst

Citizenship, Refugees & Immigration

Nataliia Stepaniuk is a Senior Policy Analyst with the Citizenship and Passport Program Guidance Branch, IRCC. She holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Ottawa. Her research interests include gender, politics of identity, citizenship and war studies, with a regional focus on Eastern Europe. Prior to enrolling in the PhD, Nataliia worked as a researcher and project assistant for the United Nations Development Program in Ukraine, focusing on gendered aspects of community engagement. Since 2018, Nataliia has developed a policy plan to increase the responsiveness of the Passport Program to client needs, in accordance with GBA+ comm.

Odelia Bay

Odelia Bay

Doctorate Student

Osgoode Hall Law School

Odelia Bay works at the intersection of law and disability studies. She is currently a doctorate student at Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. Her dissertation project examines how workers with an episodic disability balance the competing needs of self-care and work. Before landing at Osgoode, Odelia completed her Master of Laws at Columbia Law School in New York City and graduated with highest honours as a James Kent Scholar. She has a Juris Doctor in English Common Law from the University of Ottawa and a Bachelor of Journalism from Ryerson University in Toronto. Odelia’s academic awards speak to her work in the areas of labour law, human rights and equality, and disability. She holds a Canada Graduate Scholarship to Honour Nelson Mandela from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), Odelia has taught courses on labour law, statutory interpretation, and critical race theory at the University of Victoria’s Faculty of Law. Prior to studying law, she worked as a broadcast journalist.

Serisha Iyar

Serisha Iyar

Founder

Leading in Colour

Serisha comes from a family of South African refugees and is a first-generation Canadian. This has shaped her interest in diaspora issues, refugee rights, intersectionality, anti-oppression and decolonization through a lens of liberation theology. She graduated from McGill University in 2017 where she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a minor in World Religions. Serisha is an alumna of The Mosaic Institute’s UofMosaic Fellowship and the Founder of Leading in Colour, an organization that equips young racialized leaders with the tools necessary to conduct their advocacy efforts. Most recently she served as the 2018-19 Refugee Rights Policy Intern at Citizens for Public Justice in Ottawa.

Thierry Rousseau

Thierry Rousseau

Assistant Director

Entitlement Instruments Citizenship, Refugees & Immigration

Thierry Rousseau is Deputy Director of operational policy for the Passport Program at Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. He has over 20 years of experience in the federal public service working in policy, corporate governance, and program development. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Social Science, and two certificates in public administration and management from the University of Ottawa. Recently, he has managed to expand the scope of the policy analysis at the Passport Program to consider GBA+ impacts and to enable the program to become more inclusive of the needs of vulnerable individuals.