Marjorie Brans is serial social entrepreneur and intrapreneur and Environmental Defence’s Green Champion of the Year, Marjorie Brans is co-Managing Director for the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) Ontario, co-founder of the League of Intrapreneurs Canada, and co-founder of CLARION, which has merged with CREW (Creating Resilience to Extreme Weather).
Marjorie’s practice focuses heavily on community-based responses to climate change. With her leadership, SSE launched the award-winning SELECT Climate Leaders Program serving communities of colour. Prior to SSE, she initiated and led HARITA (now R4), a project to create the world’s first scalable micro-insurance products for climate adaptation. The product is now scaling in five countries in Africa, and was designed by a team of 100 professionals, 13 institutions, over 3 continents.
Marjorie has held roles as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at NESsT, a social venture capital fund active in ten emerging economies, and as Senior Policy Advisor at Oxfam in the area of business and global poverty, where she advised some of the world's largest corporations including Wal-Mart, General Mills, Citigroup, and Swiss Re on corporate social responsibility and the opportunities that lie in blending social and financial goals.
Marjorie completed her studies at the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, Amherst College, and the Universite de Geneve. Before Oxfam, she held various positions at PhotoVoice, a London-based NGO, and Indochina Capital Corporation. She also served as the Acting and Associate Director of the Harvard Law School Fund.
Marjorie has held roles as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at NESsT, a social venture capital fund active in ten emerging economies, and as Senior Policy Advisor at Oxfam in the area of business and global poverty. She is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and academic institutions.
Katherine Bruce is Executive Director at the Planet in Focus International Environmental Film Festival, Canada's largest environmental media arts organization that promotes film as both an art form and a meaningful tool for social change. She has worked extensively in the arts sector as a producer in film, theatre and visual arts including the UK-based Cape Farewell - The cultural response to climate change as Development Director for Carbon 14: Climate is Culture in partnership with ROM Contemporary Culture. Katherine has an MA in Communication and Cultural Studies with a research focus on fresh water as both a commodity and a human right through the historical narrative of Toronto’s R.C. Harris Filtration Plant.
Lucy Cummings is the Executive Director of Faith & the Common Good, where she supports diverse faith communities contribute to greener, healthier, more resilient neighborhoods.
Prior to her work at Faith & the Common Good, Lucy lead Seacology UK, a non-profit environmental group devoted to protecting island biodiversity using a community-based approach. A Mandarin Chinese speaker (though rusty these days), she was a professor of global politics at the University of Hong Kong for ten years. There she explored the impact of environmental degradation on global security. She also consulted with the Hong Kong government on its global environmental reputation.
She holds a Bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Virginia, a Master’s in religious ethics from Yale University, and a Ph.D. in global politics from Johns Hopkins University.
She currently lives in Toronto with her husband and two teenaged daughters.
Lidia Ferreira is the former Executive Director of FutureWatch Environment and Development Education Partners, a leading organization in community based environmental and capacity building initiatives of the City of Toronto. Lidia trained in Argentina for seven years to become an architect and urban planner and came to Toronto from Paraguay in 1999. Since 2000, she has used her ability to engage with Toronto’s multicultural communities to form bridges with mainstream institutions. She has led projects related to urban naturalization, environmental protection, revitalization and community capacity building. She is known for bringing diversity and leadership to Canada’s environmental movement. After only four years of working in Toronto, her skills and talent were recognized when she received the Vital People Award, from the prestigious Toronto Foundation, for her outstanding community work.
Ron Nielsen is a senior Business and Sustainability Executive and Advisor to boards, corporations, government and sustainability groups and initiatives.
Positions he holds include: Senior Program Advisor, Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change; Leader, International Centre for Business Innovation and Sustainability; Fellow of Tomorrow's Company (UK); Member, the Executive Committee of the CSR Centre for Excellence (in mining); Chair, the Strategic Steering Committee for Business Management and Sustainability at the Canadian Standards Association; and, Advisor to current finance and sustainability initiatives including the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (US), the International Integrated Reporting Committee (UK) and the Montreal Finance and Sustainability Initiative.
Previous Positions: Senior Director, Sustainability and Strategic Partnerships, Alcan; and, General Manager, Cliffs Natural Resources.
Vincent Schutt is a Co-founder of Enviromentum, a Project of Tides Canada and an experienced sustainability consultant, trainer, facilitator, and “science guy”. Vince has a Bachelors of Science in nuclear engineering technology and a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in consulting. He is trained in Motivational Interviewing, and has conducted Climate Conversations™ with over a thousand young people. Vince has also provided behaviour change skills training workshops for hundreds of environmental activators in the United States and Canada. His areas of expertise include: root-cause analysis, behaviour change science, human factors and sustainability, metrics and evaluation, and workshop design.
Vince served on the board of the American Psychological Association Division 34 "Environmental, Conservation, and Population Psychology" and is a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT). MINT is a global network of trainers raising the profile and practice of motivational interviewing and evidence-based approaches to helping people change.