Director of Water Distribution and Transmission
EPCOR Water Services, Inc.
Susan Ancel is the director of water distribution and transmission for EPCOR Water Services, Inc. (EWSI) in Edmonton. Her group is responsible for the planning, engineering, construction, operation and maintenance of the water distribution and metering systems owned and operated by EWSI in Edmonton, serving a population base of one million residents. Her group is also responsible for the development of the GIS systems within the utility and provides analytical support in consumption and revenue forecasting for the overall utility.
Susan, a mechanical engineer, has been with the utility since 1992. She is also the past chair of the AWWA Engineering Computer Applications Committee and served on the board of directors for the Geospatial Information Technology Association (GITA) from 2001 to 2007 and in 2011, and served as president of GITA in 2006.
“Water resiliency for EPCOR means that we are able to meet the expectations and needs of our customers. It’s about tracking response and repair times to water main breaks, ensuring water quality standards are exceeded, water pressures are maintained and that work is completed within the timelines promised to our customers. EPCOR is unique in that performance is monitored daily and embedded across our entire operations to ensure all employees understand how we meet our customers’ needs.”
President and Chief Executive Officer
Ontario Clean Water Agency
Rob Andrews was appointed president and CEO of the Ontario Clean Water Agency on January 6, 2014. Since joining OCWA, Mr. Andrews and the agency’s senior management team have been working to expand the scope of OCWA’s business in the province of Ontario and solidify the agency’s reputation as Canada’s premier provider of total water and wastewater solutions. Prior to joining OCWA, Mr. Andrews was the chief executive of global water at AECOM, the world’s largest water engineering business with annual revenues exceeding $1B USD. Rob’s other previous industry experience includes Earth Tech’s executive vice-president, Global Water Projects and Products Division.
Mr. Andrews’s project experience includes engineering and project management of many of the largest water and wastewater treatment systems in the world, including Toronto, Peel Region, Boston, New York, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Hong Kong, Sydney and London.
“Once-in-a-generation storms are occurring with increasing frequency, and the cost of dealing with the after effects — like basement flooding, combined sewer overflows and plant bypasses, can be significant. By proactively working with our municipal clients to ensure that their water and wastewater infrastructure has the resiliency to withstand the impacts of severe weather, we are helping them to avoid these costs.”
Wastewater Program, Environmental Stewardship Branch
Industrial Sectors Directorate, Environment Canada
James Arnott is a regulator with Environment Canada’s Environmental Stewardship Branch and is based in the National Capital Region. He manages the regulatory program at Environment Canada, which is responsible for the administration of the federal Wastewater Systems Effluent Regulations. James also represents Environment Canada on federal-provincial-territorial committees related to wastewater management, including those under the auspices of the Canadian Council of the Ministers of the Environment.
Prior to joining Environment Canada in 2000, James spent twelve years with municipal governments in Ontario, where he was responsible for delivering and developing programs related to surface water and wastewater management.
Senior Managing Consultant
Smarter Cities, Water and Transportation at IBM
After joining IBM’s strategy consulting practice in 1996, Jean-François Barsoum began developing technology business plans and strategies.
In 2008, he was among the few Canadians selected by Al Gore’s Climate Project to receive training from the Nobel peace laureate. In 2011, he joined the board of directors of Mr. Gore’s Climate Reality Project – Canada.
Jean-François has been a keynote speaker around the world on the topics of smart cities, innovation, corporate responsibility and climate change. He is a member of the steering committee of the David Suzuki Foundation (Québec), a director at Canadian Water Network and is the leader of IBM’s Green Community, founded in 1999.
“For the past few decades, managing water has been evolving slowly, but surely. But climate change and rapid urbanisation are leading us to realise that change must come much more rapidly than it has in the past. Harnessing big data coming from masses of sensors and the Internet of Things is one of the avenues that holds much promise.”
Urban Design, City Planning
City of Toronto
Sheila Boudreau, OALA (with seal), CSLA, OPPI (Prov), MA, BLA, BA, is a landscape architect and urban designer in City Planning at the City of Toronto. Her work is city-wide and includes developing guidelines and standards, designing and constructing capital works projects (including innovative pilot projects), coordinating inter-divisional/multidisciplinary working groups, community outreach, and the initiation and development of the street tree triple-bottom-line benefit-cost analysis project, as well as the adopt-a-street-tree program.
As co-lead on the Green Streets technical guidelines project with Toronto Water (i.e., construction standards for green infrastructure in the right-of-way to meet Toronto Green Standards objectives), Sheila strives to integrate best practices in planning and designing a more resilient and vibrant city. She also represents the Ontario Association of Landscape Architects on the Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition, and City Planning on the Toronto Cancer Prevention Coalition and Toronto Public Health’s shade policy committee (advocating for natural shade through sustainable tree planting).
Prior to joining the city in 2011, she worked with the Toronto firm DTAH on projects such as the Evergreen Brick Works, Waterfront Toronto’s Central Waterfront Promenade, and Osgoode Hall Law School at York University. Early in her career she designed parks and ravine trail systems at the City of Waterloo, and created and managed a community-based tree planting program with Tree Canada Green Streets. Sheila is multi-modal and bikes, walks and takes transit whenever possible. She is passionate about ensuring urban dwellers — especially kids — have access to nature in order to create healthier communities and local ecologies.
Principal Advisor, Policy and Communications
George Claydon is a principal advisor in the policy and communications branch of Infrastructure Canada. He joined the department in November 2004.
George’s policy work over the past decade has focused on the design and implementation of new infrastructure programs, including the Gas Tax Fund and the New Building Canada Plan. Most recently, George has been worked on the design of the new 10-year infrastructure plan.
George has held a number of positions across the federal government, including the Privy Council Office, Treasury Board Secretariat and Parks Canada.
George attended McGill University, where he obtained a bachelor’s degree in political science. He also obtained a master’s degree in urban and regional planning at Queen’s University.
Chief Executive Officer
Canadian Water Network
Bernadette Conant is the chief executive officer of Canadian Water Network (CWN), where she has been working since 2003. Established in 2001 by Canada’s Networks of Centres of Excellence, CWN plays a vital role in ensuring that Canada benefits from its investments in research to manage its water resources more effectively and becomes a world leader in water management.
Bernadette has a Master of Science in hydrogeology from the University of Waterloo and holds the Faculty of Science Alumni of Honour Award from that institution. She currently serves as a director on the boards of the Global Water Research Coalition, Hydrogeologists Without Borders, and the Water Economics, Policy and Governance Network, and is a member of the Water Partner Advisory Committee to the Water Stewardship Committee of the Canadian Council of the Federation.
Partner, Digital Operations Practice Lead
Brian Corbishley leads a digital transformation practice for Canada focused on emerging technologies in the Internet of Things, digitizing operations, predictive asset optimization, and smarter infrastructure. Disruptive business models are evolving with operations becoming increasingly critical to enterprise performance, connected, ecosystem-centric, real time and insightful with enterprise decisions and action being taken in context.
Debra G Coy
XPV Water Partners
Debra Coy is a partner with XPV Water Partners, the largest water-focused growth equity fund in North America. She has been an advisor to XPV since 2010 and joined the firm full-time in early 2015. From 2010 to 2015, she was also a principal with Svanda & Coy Consulting, providing strategic advisory services for investors, companies, and municipal utilities from a capital markets perspective.
Ms. Coy is well known in the water sector from her 20 years on Wall Street as an equity research analyst, where she developed a leading franchise and broad expertise in covering the global water sector for investors at firms, including Janney Montgomery Scott, Schwab Capital Markets and HSBC Securities. She was named a Financial Times/Starmine “Best Brokerage Analyst” in 2008 and 2009 and a Forbes “Best Brokerage Analyst” in 2010 for water utilities coverage. She is a frequent speaker at industry events and a regular columnist on water finance and policy matters for Global Water Intelligence and other publications.
“One of the biggest challenges that water systems face in becoming more resilient is finding the money for infrastructure upgrades. Innovation around more efficient ways of monitoring, forecasting, and managing the performance of infrastructure systems can help bring down the cost of much-needed investments, making resiliency more affordable.”
Public Sector Digest
Matthew has served as the project manager/team lead for more than 250 successful local government implementations of Tangible Capital Assets (TCA 3150) across Canada. Since 2013, Matthew has lead the delivery of more than 120 municipal asset management plans, surpassing the requirements set by provincial and federal governments. He has also worked with communities to integrate their asset management strategies with their water rate studies for a more holistic approach to asset management. Matthew has significant experience working with senior levels of elected and appointed local government leaders and he is a published expert on asset management and Long-Term Capital Planning. He graduated from the University of Western Ontario with a degree in economics.
Engineering and Construction Services, City of Toronto
Michael D’Andrea, MESc, PEng, is executive director of engineering and construction services for the City of Toronto, where he leads a division of about 540 professional and technical staff and is responsible for the engineering design and construction of the City of Toronto’s water, wastewater, stormwater, transportation and solid waste infrastructure. In 2015, the division managed over 400 contracts, with a total capital budget valued at over $560 million.
Previously, Michael was director of water infrastructure management for Toronto Water, where he was responsible for infrastructure planning, capital programming, asset management and policy development in support of the City of Toronto’s water, wastewater and stormwater management infrastructure. In this role, he led several environmental stewardship initiatives, including the City’s climate change adaptation strategy to reduce the risk of flooding from extreme storms, and the development and implementation of Toronto’s Wet Weather Flow Master Plan and guidelines, which promote green infrastructure approaches and low impact development in support of Toronto’s Green Standard.
Michael represents the City of Toronto on the provincially-mandated committee that developed the source water protection plan for water treatment plant intakes along the north shore of Lake Ontario. Most recently, he contributed a chapter on the City of Toronto’s water management experiences in the book, “Urban Water Challenges in the Americas,” jointly published by the Inter-American Network of Academies of Science and UNESCO.
“Older municipalities dealing with frequent basement and surface flooding from extreme storms must retrofit their systems to build in resiliency through costly and disruptive upgrades. This is further compounded by competing municipal priorities and limited financial resources. Drawing on these experiences, growing municipalities can and should seize the opportunity to build resiliency into their systems through proper planning and design, especially when considering the cost of building resiliency into their systems versus the losses that we can be expected if they don’t!”
Lou Di Gironimo
Lou Di Gironimo is general manager of Toronto Water, a division of the City of Toronto. Under his leadership, the 1,700 staff in Toronto Water focus on providing quality water services – supplying drinking water, treating wastewater and managing stormwater, essential for protecting public health, property and the environment. The division serves 3.4 million residents and businesses in Toronto and portions of York and Peel, and has more than $28.2 billion in infrastructure.
Lou has a diverse background in both the private and public sectors at the municipal and provincial levels of government. Some of the organizations he has been associated with include the City of Hamilton, the Ontario Clean Water Agency and Ontario Development Corporation. He has also worked for private engineering and land development companies. During his career, Lou has had extensive experience managing municipal infrastructure and urban development issues.
Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Waterloo
Monica Emelko is an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of Waterloo. Her research interests are focused on drinking water supply and treatment, particularly as related to sustainable technology design and optimization, risk analysis, integrated resource management, climate change impacts on water, groundwater under the influence of surface water and quantitative microbial risk assessment. Dr. Emelko is the co-principal investigator of the Southern Rockies Watershed Project, which focuses on evaluating the effects of wildfire and forest harvesting disturbance on hydrology, water quality, aquatic ecology and treatability.
Her ongoing work involves active participation from over a dozen utilities and conservation authorities. She has advised federal and provincial/state agencies in Canada, the United States and Australia on drinking water treatment, source water protection and integrated resource management policy. She is the lead author of the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change revisions to the Terms of Reference on groundwater under the direct influence of surface water (GUDI). In 2014, the Southern Rockies Watershed Project team was awarded an Alberta Emerald Foundation Award and the Canadian Council of the Federation Excellence in Water Stewardship Award — this is the highest environmental honour of its kind given out by the Canadian government.
Head, Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation
University of Waterloo
Blair Feltmate is head of the Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation (ICCA) in the Faculty of Environment at the University of Waterloo. The primary purpose of ICCA is to mobilize practical and cost-effective means to help de-risk Canadians from climate change and extreme weather events.
Previous positions Dr. Feltmate has held include: vice president of sustainable development at the Bank of Montreal; director of sustainable development at Ontario Power Generation; and partner at Sustainable Investment Group/YMG Capital Management.
Dr. Feltmate has published scores of papers on adaptation to climate change, the additive value of sustainable development applied to business, and population and community ecology. He has co-authored two textbooks, Aquatic Insects (1992) and Sustainable Banking (2015). He holds a PhD in theoretical and applied ecology, master’s degrees in zoology and environmental science and was an NSERC post-doctoral fellow. Dr. Feltmate is also a member of various business and NGO boards.
“Under the umbrella of climate change, extreme weather and flooding, every day that we don’t adapt is a day we don’t have if we are to avoid ongoing management by disaster scenarios.”
General Manager, Business Strategy and Resilience (retired)
Sydney Water, Australia
Sandra Gamble was the general manager of business strategy and resilience at Sydney Water (Australia) from July 2012 to March 2016. While she was a member of the executive team, Sydney Water developed a new strategy to take its place as the Lifestream of Sydney for generations to come. This means adopting a new operating model that will put customers at the heart of everything it does. It also means taking a constructive role in the conversation about the future of Sydney.
Sandra also has a long experience in the gas and electricity industries, spanning the value chain from generation, production, transmission and distribution to retail and end-use customers. As a consultant and executive, she has provided advice to governments, regulators and businesses on utility reform, market development, and corporate and regulatory strategy.
Sandra has a bachelor of engineering (electrical) with honours, and a master of business administration. She is a fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Assistant Professor and Philomathia Chair of Water Policy, McMaster University
Adjunct Professor, UN University Institute for Water, Environment and Health
Dustin Garrick specializes in environmental and water policy. He seeks to understand the drivers of and policy responses to the global water crisis by engaging theoretical perspectives on property rights, federalism and policy change and by using interdisciplinary and comparative methodology. His current research investigates water allocation policy and river basin governance in water stressed regions of Western North America and Southeast Australia. In this research, he has a particular interest in adaptation to climate change in transboundary rivers of North America, including a project investigating federalism and extreme climate events.
Dr. Garrick has a special interest in interdisciplinary and science-practitioner networks. He currently serves on the management committee of the Food, Energy, Environment and Water Network. He recently served on the Global Water Partnership / OECD task force on Water Security and Sustainable Growth and is active on a number of international and comparative water policy projects. In his capacity as Philomathia Chair of Water Policy, Dr. Garrick is working with faculty, students and community and international partners to build a McMaster Water Network focused on connecting water science, technology and policy to deliver local and global impacts.
Dr. Garrick’s work has been published in Science, Annual Review of Environment and Resources, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society and several public policy and economics journals. He currently holds grants from the Canadian and Australian Research Councils.
Prior to joining McMaster in January 2014, Dr. Garrick was a research fellow at the University of Oxford (2011-13) and a Fulbright Scholar (2010-11) in Australia, where he remains a research associate of the Centre for Water Economics, Environment and Policy at Australian National University.
Chief Technology Officer
Linda Gowman, PhD, PEng, is chief technology officer at Trojan Technologies in London, Ontario. She has degrees in engineering (University of Toronto) and biophysics (University of Western Ontario).
Linda has been with Trojan in various senior roles leading research and engineering, including vice-president of science and technology and vice-president of research. Her teams have been engaged in developing product innovations that have won numerous international awards in the water and wastewater treatment sectors.
She enjoys the challenges and opportunities of bringing internal and external cross-functional teams together to provide innovative solutions to issues related to water, and believes that bringing people together with diversity in experience and approaches leads to the best outcomes.
Linda participates in various water-related organizations, and has participated on the board of several, including Canadian Water Network, some years ago.
Trojan is the recognized leader in ultraviolet light treatment of water, with the world’s largest installed base of municipal UV sites, in more than 80 countries. Trojan has more recently diversified into new product offerings for several applications, including water, wastewater and ballast water treatment; ultrapurification of water for manufacturing; filtration; and solids separation.
Canadian Water and Wastewater Association
Robert Haller is the executive director of the Canadian Water and Wastewater Association (CWWA), which is the national voice of the water and wastewater sector in Ottawa. Robert took on this leadership role after almost 20 years as a senior municipal administrator; most of those years serving as a CAO for small- and medium-sized communities.
With a geography degree from Carleton and an MPA from Western, he now serves as a spokesperson for the Canadian water sector at the national level. He relies heavily on his members for their expertise and support; especially on technical matters of treatment methods. Robert’s interests lean toward utility management issues and facilitating national dialogue and information sharing.
Robert served as a municipal advisor to the most recent RBC Public Attitudes Survey and represented the water and wastewater sector as an advisor to the Canadian Infrastructure Report Card. Robert recently coauthored Public Attitudes 2015 as a starting point for public education plans around infrastructure. CWWA is now leading a national project with provincial partners to develop tools to support utility leaders on issues around asset management and infrastructure renewal.
Independent Consultant, thinkBright Environmental Innovations
Coordinator, Columbia Basin Water Smart
Meredith Hamstead is an independent consultant specializing in sustainable community development. Since 2010, Meredith has led an innovative water conservation initiative (Columbia Basin Water Smart) in southeastern British Columbia that has supported 26 small and medium sized local governments to sustainably reduce community water demand by up to 40%.
Through her consulting firm, thinkBright Environmental Innovations, Meredith partners with a diverse range of professionals to deliver sustainability projects in water conservation, green building, climate change adaptation and mitigation, and sustainable land use planning.
Meredith’s has a Master’s Degree in Environmental Design from the University of Calgary. Her 15-year consulting career includes senior local government experience. She has served on public advisory and steering committees in water sustainability, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and community sustainability, most recently including the BC Water and Waste Association’s Water Sustainability Committee and the Columbia Basin Trust’s Advisory Committees on Climate Resilience and Climate Change Adaptation.
Meredith has delivered a wide range of sustainability projects for federal, provincial and local governments, and for the non-profit and private sectors. She is a certified Environmental Professional (EP) specializing in environmental communications and public awareness, and environmental policy and legislation.
With passion for a bright future, Meredith has dedicated her career to the pursuit of sustainability solutions that meet that needs of small, rapidly changing communities.
“Innovation without data is a gamble. As climate change impacts become apparent at the local scale, the usual approaches to water conservation will no longer suffice. Water utilities must develop more robust data about how water in their systems is really being used in order to ensure that locally appropriate water conservation innovations are targeting the best opportunities to sustainably reduce water consumption and increase water system resilience.”
Chief Executive Officer and General Manager
District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority
George Hawkins serves as chief executive officer and general manager of the District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water). On his arrival in 2009, Mr. Hawkins launched an ambitious agenda to transform DC Water into a customer-oriented enterprise that is driving innovation and delivering improved value to its ratepayers. The core goal is to improve aging infrastructure while complying with stringent regulatory requirements.
DC Water is implementing the $2.6 billion Clean Rivers Project to nearly eliminate overflows of sewage and stormwater to the Anacostia and Potomac rivers and Rock Creek. DC Water has also invested $950 million to achieve the next level of nutrient reductions to help restore the Chesapeake Bay. DC Water is nearing completion of a $470 million waste-to-energy program to help manage solids being removed from reclaimed water while generating 13 megawatts of green power. Mr. Hawkins tripled the rate of DC Water’s program to replace water and sewer infrastructure.
DC Water is also driving industry-leading efforts in customer engagement, including a vibrant social media presence, in science and engineering research and development, and in product development and licensing. DC Water is designing a social media program to encourage innovative ideas from staff and to support a utility-driven business incubator for businesses and local jobs. George has also launched DC Water Works! — a program to experiment with cost-efficient techniques to encourage local workforce development and hiring.
Prior to joining DC Water, Mr. Hawkins served as director of the District Department of the Environment. Previously, Mr. Hawkins was the executive director of several non-profit organizations in New Jersey, including New Jersey Future, the Stony Brook Watershed Association and the New Jersey Council of Watershed Associations. Mr. Hawkins held senior positions with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and served Vice President Gore on the National Performance Review, playing an integral role in strengthening environmental protection programs at EPA and OSHA.
Mr. Hawkins began his career practicing law for the Boston firm Ropes & Gray, and is a member of the Bar in Massachusetts and the District of Columbia. He graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University and cum laude from Harvard Law School. Since 1999, Mr. Hawkins has taught Environmental Law and Policy for the Princeton Environment Institute at Princeton University.
“Extreme weather joins a long list of challenges that confront water utilities… like aging systems, increasing rate pressures, limited customer interaction and expensive regulatory mandates. Each challenge is daunting – but then resiliency in the face of hurricane and drought comes along to trump all the rest. Our industry is up to the challenge! We will succeed by adopting strategies that respond to multiple challenges, like DC’s innovative digester project, which recovers energy, creates a revenue stream and reduces our carbon footprint.”
Trevor T. Hill
Chairman and CEO
Trevor Hill has over 25 years’ experience in building and leading water companies, including four successful startups, and has significant experience in both public and private markets having raised $75M through an IPO and over $500M for private ventures. Mr. Hill co-founded Global Water Resources, an investor-owned utility in the water scarce south-west that through his leadership, and direction built FATHOM, a suite of software products that provides state of the art back office services to municipal water utilities. With his continued vision, FATHOM is now an independent software company that just recently secured Round B funding with Silver Lake Kraftwerk to further enhance and expand the platform.
His Worship Keith Hobbs
Mayor, City of Thunder Bay
Keith Hobbs was elected mayor of Thunder Bay, Ontario in the 2010 municipal election as a first time political candidate. In 2014, he was re-elected for a second term.
Previously Mayor Hobbs served as a member of the Thunder Bay Police for 34 years, which offered a unique insight into the community’s challenges. Being on Council allows him a venue to address community poverty, ethnic and cultural equality, and economic diversification that offers good-paying jobs and housing for all citizens. Mayor Hobbs is compelled to raise the bar in community safety and crime reduction, with a commitment to having a safer, inclusive, cleaner, greener, prosperous and proud community with the assistance and partnership of every citizen and business in the City of Thunder Bay.
In 2013, Mayor Hobbs was appointed Chair of the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Cities Initiative (GLSLCI), a bi-national coalition of U.S. and Canadian mayors and other local officials that work with federal, state, and provincial governments to advance the protection and restoration of the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River.
Mayor Hobbs feels social progress and economic opportunities go hand-in-hand and advocates that belief on behalf of everyone who lives in the City of Thunder Bay. President John F. Kennedy said, “Economic growth without social progress lets the great majority of people remain in poverty while a privileged few reap the benefits of rising abundance.” Mayor Hobbs is part of a growing undertaking of citizens who continue to share in the growing determination to make Thunder Bay a better place to live and enjoy through social and economic progress.
Mayor Hobbs also enjoys spending time with his wife Marisa and their blended family of five.
Steve E. Hrudey
Professor Emeritus, Analytical and Environmental Toxicology
Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Alberta
Steve Hrudey has maintained a diverse, interdisciplinary career in the environmental health sciences and risk management. He has been recognized with a number of major awards, including a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal from the Royal Society of Canada for service to scholarship in science, the 2013 Research Excellence Summit Award of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta and the top research award (2012 A.P. Black Award) of the American Water Works Association, the world’s largest professional association dedicated to safe drinking water.
Dr. Hrudey was elected a fellow of the Academy of Science – Royal Society of Canada in 2006, the Society for Risk Analysis in 2007, the International Water Association in 2010 and the Canadian Academy of Engineering in 2014. He has served as an elected member of APEGA Council from 2012 to 2015 and in April 2015 was elected as president for 2016 of this 75,000-member agency that self-regulates these applied science professions.
Dr. Hrudey has published extensively in both academic and public venues, having co-authored or edited 10 books, including the widely acclaimed 2004 book inspired by the Walkerton tragedy: Safe Drinking Water – Lessons from Recent Outbreaks in Affluent Nations and in 2014: Ensuring Safe Drinking Water – Learning from Frontline Experience with Contamination; as well as 27 book chapters and 180 refereed journal articles.
Dr. Hrudey’s service to expert panels includes the Research Advisory Panel to the Walkerton Inquiry (2000-2002), the Expert Panel on Safe Drinking Water for First Nations for the Minister of Indian and Northern Affairs (2006), Chair of the Technical Advisory Committee to the British Columbia Minister of Health on turbidity and microbial risk in drinking water (2007-2008), Chair of an international expert panel on disinfection by-products and bladder cancer in Washington, D.C. (2014-15), for the Water Research Foundation (WRF) — an international expert panel based in the United Kingdom that developed a 2013 publication, Risk Governance: An Implementation Guide for Water Utilities, and Chair of the Royal Society of Canada Expert Panel on Environmental and Health Impacts of Canada’s Oil Sands Industry (2009-2010).
“The dictionary defines resilience as, ‘the ability to become strong, healthy, or successful again after something bad happens.’ Because bad stuff inevitably happens, the exercise of providing high quality, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, year-round safe drinking water can only be achieved by ensuring that a water utility is resilient. What separates a good water utility from a mediocre one? — Its ability to deal successfully with those inevitable challenges.”
Partner, Metroline Research Group Inc.
Dave Kains has been practicing the art and science of marketing research for 30 years. He is passionate about the world of marketing research, exploring concepts, new ideas and underlying motivation in the minds of consumers.
Metroline Research Group is based in Kitchener-Waterloo and Toronto, and serves a diverse global client base. Their work for the public sector is focused on resident perceptions, attitudes and behaviour related to strategic planning, water efficiency and waste management. Past projects have included research related to water efficiency master plans, conservation programs, watering restrictions, rainwater harvesting, greywater systems and communications about water efficiency.
In addition to being a partner at Metroline, Dave spends time with the team at Communitech, a Kitchener-Waterloo based technology incubator, mentoring high tech start-ups in the areas of marketing, marketing research and communications.
Dave is a member of the Marketing Research Industry Association (MRIA) and the Qualitative Research Consultants of America (QRCA). He spearheaded an initiative by the field committee of QRCA in 2014 to survey members of QRCA, MRIA and other researchers throughout North America about respondent quality in qualitative research.
Professor of Civil Engineering
Associate Dean of Cross Disciplinary Programs in Engineering
University of Toronto
Bryan Karney graduated from the University of British Columbia, first in 1980 with an engineering UG degree, and then in 1984 with a PhD in Civil Engineering. He is currently a professor of civil engineering and associate dean of cross-disciplinary programs in engineering at the University of Toronto. He is also a principal of the engineering consulting firm HydraTek & Associates.
Bryan has over 30 years of experience in teaching, research and hydraulic consulting services and has worked on a wide range of fluid pipe systems, including water, wastewater, oil, gas and jet fuel.
Bryan has taught, spoken and written widely on subjects related to water resource systems, energy issues, hydrology, climate change, engineering education and ethics. He’s published several hundred papers and articles, co-authored the book, Comprehensive Water Distribution Systems Analysis Handbooks for Engineers and Planners, and won a number of teaching and research awards.
Director of Water Services
Region of Waterloo
Nancy Kodousek has more than 30 years of senior management experience with both municipal and private sector water and wastewater systems. Prior to her current position as director of water services at the Region of Waterloo, Ms. Kodousek held similar management-level positions at AWS Engineers & Planners (formerly Azurix) and the Region of Ottawa-Carleton.
Ms. Kodousek is a member of Professional Engineers Ontario, the Ontario Society of Professional Engineers, the American Water Works Association and the Ontario Water Works Association. Ms. Kodousek participates and volunteers on a number of committees including the Canadian Water and Wastewater Association and the Canadian Water Network Canadian Municipal Water Consortium. Ms. Kodousek also holds certification as a level IV operator in water treatment, water distribution, wastewater collection and wastewater treatment.
“Building resilience in our water systems is like building a quality management process that continually assesses risks and looks to improve reliability and redundancy of the supply and system for the future.“
Manager of Municipal Programs
Canadian Water Network
Bu joined Canadian Water Network in May 2015. He is responsible for the ongoing development, management and implementation of Canadian Water Network’s municipal water programs, including the Canadian Municipal Water Consortium. He oversees the development and management of research programs and activities that collectively support and advance solutions for managing, regulating and supporting municipal drinking water, wastewater and stormwater systems.
Previously, Bu was the director of community infrastructure for the Department of Community and Government Services with the Government of Nunavut. He has an extensive and broad municipal background, including the initiation and delivery of municipal capital programs and community sustainability planning. He led the planning and implementation of water treatment and distribution systems and wastewater systems in Nunavut, and established research initiatives that have supported the ongoing refinement of northern wastewater standards.
Bu holds a PhD in environmental chemistry from the University of Toronto and an Honours Bachelor of Science in biochemistry from Bishop’s University.
Commissioner of Environmental Services
Erin Mahoney is commissioner of environmental services for York Region, overseeing water and wastewater services, waste management, forestry and corporate energy for almost 1.2 million residents and 28,000 businesses. She has over 25 years of public and private sector experience on projects involving water and wastewater treatment, environmental legislation, and public engagement.
Ms. Mahoney is a board member of the Water Technology Acceleration Project (WaterTAP) and past chair of the Regional Public Works Commissioners of Ontario. As an active member of the public works community Erin holds memberships with American Water Works Association, Toronto Board of Trade, Canadian Chamber of Commerce and American Public Works Association.
“One of York Region’s goals has been to reduce peak water use to ensure a resilient and sustainable water supply. Our ‘Water for Tomorrow’ program saves 26.2 million litres of water each day. At the centre of this program is social collaboration, where we engage the public to build ideas around conservation, rather than build more infrastructure.”
Regional Vice President for Canada
Reid McDougall has over 15 years of experience in the environmental sector. He is currently the regional vice president for Canada with Pure Technologies, a world leader in the development and application of technologies for the inspection, assessment and monitoring of pipelines and other critical infrastructure.
Before joining Pure, Reid worked with Sustainable Development Technology Canada and the SD Tech Fund,™ where he managed a portfolio of oil and gas and water treatment technologies, working with Canadian entrepreneurs to commercialize innovative, clean technologies.
Previously, Reid was responsible for managing the oilfield and industrial solid waste management facility business for CCS Midstream Services, and was a Musk Ox farmer in Palmer, Alaska.
Dan McKinnon is the director of Hamilton Water. He has worked in a variety of progressively more responsible roles at the City of Hamilton since 1994, and has been a director since 2009. His portfolio includes water and wastewater treatment, distribution and collection, meter operations, customer service, environmental laboratory, environmental monitoring and enforcement, as well as water and wastewater planning and engineering.
As a graduate of Mohawk College in Hamilton, Dan has spent the last 28 years in the water and wastewater industry, including nine years with private contracting firms in the Hamilton area.
Dan lives in Ancaster with his wife and two sons. He is a proud, lifelong Hamiltonian who never misses an opportunity to advocate for… and brag about… Hamilton.
Chief Executive Officer
BC Water & Waste Association
Tanja McQueen is a seasoned business leader with over 25 years of experience driving organizational change and transforming strategy into results in private sector, public sector, and not-for-profit roles, including CEO of a provincial association, senior executive with a water technology company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange, and senior manager within regional and municipal government.
She is presently the chief executive officer of the BC Water & Waste Association (BCWWA), a member-based not-for-profit association that serves 4,600 water sector professionals who are responsible for the design, supply, operation and maintenance of drinking water and wastewater systems that safeguard public health and the environment in British Columbia and the Yukon.
Over her career, Tanja has provided leadership for strategic planning, governance, and business operations. She holds a BBA in accounting and an MBA in marketing, both from the Schulich School of Business at York University.
Directrice du Service de l’eau
Ville de Montréal
Chantal Morissette has been the head of City of Montreal’s Water Services since 2011. She manages some $30 billion worth of assets related to drinking water production and distribution for 2 million people, as well as wastewater treatment and storm water management. In recent years, Ms. Morissette’s focus has been on the continuous improvement of operations and maintenance activities, as well as on increasing investment in water infrastructure in order to ensure a sustainable service for future generations.
Water Services operates on various sites of the island of Montreal, with six drinking water treatment plants and a major wastewater treatment plant, said to be the 3rd largest in the world. Montreal’s three main drinking water plants have recently been upgraded with the addition of UV and ozone disinfection. Ozone disinfection is also being added to the wastewater treatment plant’s operations. Due to size of this plant, the main challenge – and probably a world’s first, is to go about upgrading the systems while maintaining full-time operations.
Ms. Morissette has been in the water business for 22 years, mostly in the municipal sector. Her career began at École Polytechnique de Montréal, then continued at the city of Laval as a water quality improvement program consultant and subsequently manager of distribution system operations. She spent the last 10 years working for the City of Montreal, initially to set up a new business unit responsible for water and wastewater distribution systems. Maintenance and investment programs have more than doubled during her term.
Chantal holds a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from McGill University and a master of applied science from École Polytechnique de Montréal. She also holds certification as a board of directors administrator from Collège des administrateurs des sociétés and Laval University. She was a board member of the American Water Works Association and currently sits on the board of directors of CERIU (Centre d’expertise et de recherche en infrastructures urbaines).
Chantal Morissette est la directrice du Service de l’eau de la Ville de Montréal depuis 2011. Elle gère des actifs de près de 30 milliards $ liés à la production et la distribution d’eau potable pour environ 2 millions de personnes, ainsi que la gestion et le traitement des eaux usées et pluviales. Au cours des dernières années, son accent a été mis sur l’amélioration continue des opérations et des activités de maintenance, ainsi que sur l’augmentation des investissements dans les infrastructures d’eau afin d’assurer un service durable pour les générations futures.
Le service fonctionne sur différents sites de l’île de Montréal, avec notamment six usines de traitement d’eau potable, et une station de traitement des eaux usées, parmi la plus grande dans le monde. Récemment, trois principales usines d’eau potable de Montréal ont été modernisées par l’ajout de procédés de désinfection par UV et à l’ozone. La désinfection à l’ozone est également en cours d’installation à la station de traitement des eaux usées. En raison de la taille de la station, cela représente tout un défi et probablement une première mondiale car il faut maintenir toutes les opérations de traitement à temps plein tout en effectuant ces travaux d’amélioration.
Chantal Morissette travaille dans le secteur de l’eau depuis 22 ans, principalement dans le domaine municipal. Sa carrière a débuté à l’École Polytechnique de Montréal ; elle s’est poursuivie à la Ville de Laval, en tant que responsable du programme d’amélioration de la qualité de l’eau et puis comme superviseure aux opérations du réseau de distribution. Depuis les 10 dernières années elle travaille pour la Ville de Montréal. Elle a mis en place une nouvelle unité responsable de la gestion des réseaux d’eau potable et d’eaux usées. Les programmes d’entretien et d’investissement ont plus que doublé au cours de son mandat.
Chantal Morissette est titulaire d’un baccalauréat en biochimie de l’Université Mc Gill et d’une maîtrise en sciences appliquées de l’École Polytechnique de Montréal. Elle détient également une certification universitaire en gouvernance des sociétés au Collège des administrateurs des sociétés de l’Université Laval.
Elle est impliquée dans diverses associations, notamment comme membre du conseil de l’American Water Works Association, et elle siège actuellement au conseil d’administration du CERIU (Centre d’expertise et de recherche en infrastructures urbaines).
The Honourable Glen Murray
Ontario Minister of the Environment and Climate Change
Glen Murray has had a lifetime of activism in urban planning, sustainable development and community health, and is a founding member of the Canadian AIDS Society. Minister Murray served as mayor of Winnipeg from 1998 to 2004. He has also served as a visiting fellow at the Faculty of Architecture and Landscape Design at the University of Toronto, was appointed chair of the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy in 2005, and was named president and CEO of the Canadian Urban Institute in 2007. Murray was first elected to the Ontario legislature in 2010, and currently serves as Ontario’s Minister of the Environment and Climate Change.
Helen C. Noehammer
Director of Transportation and Infrastructure Planning
City of Mississauga
Helen Noehammer, MASc, PEng, is the director of transportation and infrastructure planning with the City of Mississauga’s Transportation and Works Department. Helen is responsible for overseeing a broad range of activities, including the review of development applications from a transportation and public works perspective; the preparation of asset management programs for multi-year capital budgets for roads, bridges and stormwater management infrastructure; conducting Class Environmental Assessment studies for expansions to the City’s road and stormwater infrastructure networks; management of contaminated properties; the Active Transportation Office; and long-range planning for the City’s transportation and transit networks. A recent accomplishment was obtaining approval from Mississauga Council for the implementation of a stormwater charge, making Mississauga the largest Canadian municipality to currently administer such a charge.
Prior to joining the City of Mississauga in 2014, Helen worked for Metro Transportation and the City of Toronto in a variety of roles, most recently as the director of engineering review within the Engineering & Construction Services Division.
Professor, Economics, Brock University
Scientific Director, Water Economics, Policy and Governance Research Network
Steven Renzetti is a professor of economics at Brock University and scientific director for the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council-funded Water Economics, Policy and Governance Research Network. His research has been published in leading journals and has addressed issues related to water demands, pricing and the structure of water utilities’ costs of supply.
Dr. Renzetti attained his PhD in economics at the University of British Columbia in 1990. He has extensive experience working with interdisciplinary teams and as an advisor to governments. He serves on the editorial board of Water Resources Research and was recently appointed by the International Joint Commission to serve on the Science Priorities Committee of the Great Lakes Science Advisory Board.
“One part of creating more resilient communities involves providing households and companies with the information they need in order to be able to adapt, mitigate and respond to risks. Prices are important but sometimes underappreciated pieces of information. These prices need to fully reflect the values of natural capital, external costs of production and environmental risks in order to fully inform decision-makers.”
Councillor Jaye Robinson
Chair of the Public Works & Infrastructure Committee
City of Toronto
Re-elected in 2014 with one of the city’s highest pluralities and appointed Chair of the Public Works & Infrastructure Committee, Jaye oversees a $2 billion portfolio that includes Transportation Services, Toronto Water, Solid Waste Management and Engineering & Construction Services. In her role as Chair, she launched the city’s first ever Road Safety Strategic Plan – a comprehensive strategy to develop and deliver international road safety practices in Toronto.
She also sits on the Executive Committee, Striking Committee, Art Gallery of Ontario Board and the Canadian Film Centre Board, among others.
In her first term, Jaye played a key role in four fiscally responsible budgets and helped put Toronto back on a solid financial foundation. Accountability and integrity were central to her approach, and she spoke out repeatedly about the need for professionalism and transparency in city government. She also oversaw the continued growth and success of our renowned library system as Vice Chair of the Toronto Public Library Board.
Ward 25’s priorities were front and centre and Jaye delivered results. She passed more than 100 successful motions improving traffic and pedestrian safety, creating new avenues for engagement on planning issues and keeping our neighbourhoods strong and vibrant.
Jaye brings a 20-year track record as a community leader and Director in the city’s Economic Development & Culture Division to City Hall. She successfully merged arts and community building initiatives with economic development strategies and spearheaded a vibrant roster of annual events with significant economic impacts, including Nuit Blanche, Summerlicious and Winterlicious.
Jaye lives in Ward 25, Don Valley West, with her husband and three sons.
Chief Technology Officer
Public Utilities Board, Singapore
Harry Seah is currently chief technology officer of the technology department for Public Utilities Board (PUB), Singapore’s national water agency. The technology department coordinates the research and development initiatives in PUB, and supports PUB’s mission through technology, innovation, industry partnership, expertise development and the introduction of best practices.
The technology department manages research and development projects in partnership with experts from local and overseas water industry players, academia and research institutes. These projects cover strategic fields of water technology, including water and wastewater treatment, chemical and biological water quality, membrane technology and seawater desalination.
Regional Director for North America
Brendan Shane serves as the regional director for North America at C40. In this role, he supports C40 cities in the United States and Canada in their climate action and sustainability planning, measurement and implementation, and facilitates inter-city, regional and global collaboration.
Prior to joining C40, Brendan served as chief of policy and sustainability for the District Department of the Environment in Washington, DC, where he worked across district government and with private sector stakeholders to develop and implement the city’s first comprehensive sustainability plan. He also managed programs that included green building and climate change, and supported a range of cutting-edge initiatives across energy, waste and sustainable development.
Brendan served as Washington’s C40 coordinator and was an active member of the Urban Sustainability Directors Network, a network of sustainability officials from more than 120 North American cities. He previously served as environmental director for the Anacostia Waterfront Corporation, a district-owned redevelopment authority, and practiced energy and environmental law at Van Ness Feldman, LLP.
Brendan is a watershed hydrologist and attorney by training, with a bachelors in government from Franklin & Marshall College, masters in geology from the University of Maryland and law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Deputy General Counsel
National Association of Clean Water Agencies
Erica Spitzig serves as deputy general counsel for the National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA), where she works to advance NACWA’s legal advocacy on behalf of publicly-owned stormwater and wastewater utilities nationwide.
Prior to joining NACWA, Erica worked as an attorney in private practice for firms with offices in Ohio and Kentucky, where she gained significant experience representing clients on municipal clean water legal and regulatory issues, including NPDES permitting and consent decree compliance. Erica also served as an assistant attorney general for the State of Ohio, where she litigated Clean Water Act and Safe Drinking Water Act enforcement matters.
Erica received her Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center, and her Bachelor of Arts in political science from Franciscan University of Steubenville.
Chairman of the Board, Canadian Water Network
City Manager, City of Coquitlam
Peter Steblin joined the City of Coquitlam in 2008 as the city manager. He oversees the broad requirements of the organization, and is responsible for the execution of Council’s decisions and the work of City departments that includes more than 1200 employees and a total capital and operating budget of over $200 million.
Previously, Mr. Steblin was the general manager of environmental services and the city engineer for the City of London from 2002 until 2008. He was also the chief administrative officer for the joint boards of management for the Elgin Area Primary Water Supply System and the Lake Huron Water Supply System.
Mr. Steblin began his career with the City of Vancouver, where he remained until 1995. He then joined the City of Delta as director of engineering and was later promoted to chief administrative officer. Mr. Steblin’s municipal government experience is complemented by his experience in the private sector as a consultant specializing in management and engineering services.
Mr. Steblin is a past chairman/president of the Municipal Engineers Division of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia, the British Columbia chapter of the American Public Works Association, the decision making and investment planning technical committee of InfraGuide and Regional Public Works Commissioners Ontario. He is currently the Chair of Canadian Water Network’s Board of Directors, as well a member of a variety of municipal organizations.
In 2007, Mr. Steblin was elected as a Top Ten Public Works Leader from across North America. This award recognizes outstanding career service achievements of individual public works professionals in both the private and public sectors. He has also received nation-wide recognition for his efforts to promote a better way to select consulting engineers – including the Consulting Engineers of Ontario Award of Recognition (given for the first time to a public servant).
Mr. Steblin received his degree in civil engineering from the University of British Columbia in 1977 and attained his professional engineer’s designation in 1979.
Kirk Stinchcombe is a sustainability specialist with Econics. His work is driven by a passion for water sustainability and conservation. Prior to founding Econics, Kirk was the manager of operational policy with the BC Ministry of Environment’s water stewardship division.
Kirk spent much of the last decade in South East Queensland, where he was responsible for developing and delivering critical large-scale demand management projects as part of the response to the “Millennium Drought”.
Kirk has published and spoken internationally on various topics related to water efficiency and sustainability, including leakage and pressure management, rainwater harvesting, water use accounting, community-based social marketing and water pricing.
Kirk is a special advisor to the University of Victoria’s POLIS Water Sustainability Project and is a board member of the Chicago-based Alliance for Water Efficiency (AWE). He has a Master’s degree in environmental studies from the University of Waterloo, an MBA from Griffith University in Australia, and is a certified Project Management Professional.
John St. Marseille
General Manager, Infrastructure and Municipal Works
City of Cornwall
As a General Manager and a member of the City of Cornwall’s senior management team, John St. Marseille has a mandate for municipal works, infrastructure and environmental services as well as the transit division. He has branded and championed the City of Cornwall’s Blueprint, which is an urban water strategy. His career includes nearly 24 years in consulting engineering before joining the City of Cornwall.
Mr. St. Marseille received a Master of Science in engineering from Queen’s University, as well his degree in civil engineering. He also has a science degree from the University of Waterloo and a technology diploma from Georgian College. He has instructed at St. Lawrence College and is a volunteer with various technical and community committees.
“In the fall of 2013, following a catastrophic rain event, the City of Cornwall launched Blueprint, its urban water strategy. The goal was to assure citizens and key stakeholders that the city had an appropriate plan and budget to respond. We provided regular updates though social media, the City’s website, at town hall meetings and in one-on-one discussions. Extreme weather presented an opportunity to raise awareness about our infrastructure challenges.”
His Worship Berry Vrbanovic
Mayor, City of Kitchener
Berry Vrbanovic was elected as Mayor of the City of Kitchener in 2014, after serving as a City Councillor from 1994-2014. During his time as a councillor, Berry’s commitment to his constituents resulted in the fire station at Ottawa Street and River Road, the Grand River-Stanley Park branch of the Kitchener Public Library and the Stanley Park Community Centre.
In addition to serving on all regular standing committees of Kitchener city council and Region of Waterloo council, Berry is also an appointee and active participant on many boards and committees. He is also Treasurer of United Cities & Local Governments and is President Emeritus (2011-12) of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.
In 2014, Berry ran for the elected office of mayor and with an outpouring of community support was successful. He is committed to improving the quality of life for residents in Kitchener and throughout the Region of Waterloo.
Carl D. Yates
General Manager, Halifax Water
Carl Yates has extensive experience in the water utility profession, having served as project engineer, chief engineer and general manager of the Halifax Water Commission from 1988 to 1996. In 1996, he was appointed general manager of the Halifax Regional Water Commission, which assumed a regional mandate after the municipal amalgamation of the greater Halifax area in 1996. In 2007, Mr. Yates oversaw the formation of the first regulated water, wastewater and stormwater utility in Canada with the transfer of wastewater and stormwater assets from the Halifax Regional Municipality. Halifax Water is a body corporate municipal utility, generating approximately 130 million dollars in annual revenue with assets of over $2 Billion.
Mr. Yates obtained a bachelor of engineering from Memorial University of Newfoundland in 1984 and a master of applied science from the Technical University of Nova Scotia [now Dalhousie University] in 1992.
Mr. Yates is past chair of the Potable Water Committee for the National Research Council InfraGuide project, past chair of the Security and Emergency Management Committee of the Canadian Water and Wastewater Association, chair of the Focus Area Council of the Water Research Foundation, a board member of Canadian Water Network, a member of the American Water Works Association, National Association of Corrosion Engineers, International Water Association, and a member of the Board of Directors of Special Olympics Nova Scotia.
“Resiliency is crucial for successful water management. It speaks to implementing best practices for the long term and promoting intergenerational equity, and ensures that both revenues and expenses are in line with the cost of service provided. When wastewater and stormwater assets were transferred from Halifax Regional Municipality to Halifax Water in 2007, the utility formalized its cost of service for wastewater and stormwater service. Inherent in the cost of service was the establishment of depreciation as an operating expense to align with “pay as you go” principles for infrastructure renewal.”