An Annual Conference on the Future of Content in Digital Media
John Anderson is the Principal at Anderson Consulting. John was previously Director of Policy for the Official Opposition and Special Advisor on Economic Policy to the Leader. He has been Director of Government Affairs and Public Policy for the Canadian Co-operative Association, Vice President for Research for the Canadian Council on Social Development and senior policy analyst for the National Council of Welfare. He is the author of numerous studies on policy, media and communications including the 2016 study for the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives "An Over-the-Top Exemption: It's Time to Fairly Tax and Regulate the New Internet Media Services" and "Why Canada needs Postal Banking. He is the co-editor of a two volume study on work and technologyRe-shaping Work. He has taught at many Ontario universities, McMaster, Western, York and Brock and was educated at McGill, Sussex and London School of Economics. He is fluently bilingual and appears regularly on English and French media.
Milan Baic is the Founder and brainchild of Pinch VR, a Toronto based Virtual Reality company located in the heart of the city. His unwavering passion and vision for product integrity and design has put him on a course to expand Virtual Reality beyond 'quick and shallow' experiences to an open stage of creative and commercial capabilities. As a young serial entrepreneur this is Milan's fourth business, with each new endeavour having a bigger, hairier, more audacious goal than the last.
Milan's talent and success has been honoured and awarded through several publications including national finalist for the 2013 Business Development Canada Young Entrepreneur Award for his project DealTap, a ground-breaking app that aims to change real estate transactions. He is also Applied Arts Magazine 2011 Q2 Young Blood Winner and 2010 Young Blood Interactive Winner for “The New Garden”; and the 2013 Interactive Media Award winner, just to name a few. His mission in life? To be in perpetual conflict with the status quo in order to redefine what's possible.
Shawn Brixey is Dean of the School of the Arts, Media, Performance and Design (AMPD), at York University. Preceding his appointment, Brixey was professor and The Floyd and Delores Jones Endowed Chair in Arts and Sciences at the University of Washington. Previous to UW, Brixey was a professor at the University of California Berkeley, where he was Founder and Chair of the Digital Media Program. He has received a wide range of digital arts and sciences grants and awards, including National Endowment for the Arts, National Science Foundation, Apple Computer, AVID Incorporated, Adobe Systems Incorporated, Intel Corporation, Silicon Graphics, Newport Research Corporation, IBM and Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Brixey's research accomplishments include a 2003 Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship for New Media. He currently serves as a member of the International Scientific Advisory Council, for GRAND a centrally funded National Research Council Canada, Center for Excellence.
Grant Buchanan is a leading communications lawyer, a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP and head of the firm's Communication Group. His practice covers a wide range of telecom, broadcast and copyright matters. His experience includes acting as counsel to Blue Ant Media Inc. in respect of its acquisition of GlassboxTelevision Inc.; acting as counsel to the Ontario Ministry of Culture and the Ontario Media Development Corporation and the Directors Guild of Canada in numerous CRTC proceedings; acting for various radio broadcasters, including Standard Radio Inc., Astral Media Radio, Ryerson Radio Inc., Newcap Radio, and SiriusXM Canada; and acting as President of Canadian Broadcasters Rights Agency Inc., a copyright collective. He is listed in the 2015 edition of Best Lawyers in Canada, in Communications Law, and in Who's Who Legal Canada 2014 in Information Technology.
Valerie Creighton is President and CEO of the Canada Media Fund. Valerie is an industry leader in arts, culture and media, recognized for reenergizing some of the country's most important organizations in the sector over the last thirty years. An expert in organizational change, Valerie has been recognized as a visionary in promoting Canada's cultural wealth. Valerie positions Canadian programming at the forefront in world markets advocating successful, innovative Canadian content and software applications for current and emerging digital platforms. Valerie has taken part in foreign trade missions, and is regularly called upon to present the CMF model internationally. She has been recognized with numerous awards nationally and from her home province of Saskatchewan, where she owns and operates the Red Horse Ranch. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Saskatchewan, has served on a variety of regional, national and international juries and boards and has produced radio dramas for the CBC in Saskatchewan.
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 from the University of East London, a Master's in Digital Media theory from the University of the Arts London and an Honour's Bachelor of Arts in History and Communications from Simon Fraser University. 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 and the Digital Pioneer Award from the GRAND Networks of Centres of Excellence. She is also a Senior Fellow at Massey College, University of Toronto. In 2014, Toronto Life described her as one of "Toronto's 50 Most Influential People." Diamond is a data visualization, wearable technology and mobile media researcher, artist, designer and scientist. Her artwork is held by prestigious collections such as the Museum of Modern Art, NYC and the National Gallery of Canada. Her recent publications include 'Euphoria and Dystopia'.
Charles Falzon is Dean of the Faculty of Communication and Design at Ryerson University. Charles Falzon has had a distinguished career in media and creative industries with an accomplished track record in production, brand development and commerce. An industry veteran in Canada, Charles has managed media enterprises in the UK, US, Japan, Latin America and Malta. His breadth of executive experience includes distribution, marketing, publishing, as well as live events, production studios, theme parks and brand development. Falzon was global president of such properties as Thomas The Tank Engine, Guinness World Records and Art Attack. He was the founding chair of the Canadian Film and Television Production Association (now CMPA) and a Governor of the Banff Film Festival. Charles's creative work has been recognized with numerous awards including two Canadian Screen Awards for best children's series and an International Emmy nomination.
Kristin Grant is the founder of Westcott Multimedia, a strategy consulting and content creation firm specializing in how consumer data is affecting the music industry. Kristin received her undergraduate degree in Entrepreneurship at Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University. Soon after, Kristin moved to NYC to pursue a masters degree in Music & Business from New York University. To date, she has published over 35 articles on Billboard.com, Billboard.biz, Hollywood Reporter and Medium. In May 2015, she submitted her masters thesis on "Empowering Independent Content Owners through Actionable Consumer Insights: A Focus on Digital Distribution in Jamaica." Most recently, Kristin worked as an entertainment analyst at a boutique investment firm on Wall Street, called Magna Investment.
Julia Johnston is a serial entrepreneur having co-founded Skills.com, where she was the COO, and mEgo Inc., where she served as its CEO. She is currently a business affairs advisor to internationally-renowned photographer Edward Burtynsky, including on the Anthropocene Project, Burtynsky's next film, museum show, book and print project, and on Burtynsky's Toronto-based 3D printing atelier, Think2Thing. Prior to founding mEgo in 2007, Julia worked for many years for Richard Li's Pacific Century Group (PCG) including in the U.K. as the Senior Vice President of Business Development for PCCW, where she was a business development manager and worked on the roll out of a pan-Asian satellite telecommunications business and on the evaluation and execution of a number of investments in the real estate, telecommunications and technology spaces globally. From 2012-2014, Julia was the Vice President and head of the Corporate Communications Group at NATIONAL Public Relations in Toronto, and was part of the Telecommunications, Media and Technology group at CIBC Work Markets in 2000.
Julia graduated from Princeton University and obtained her law degree from the University of Toronto. She currently sits on the board of ZoomerMedia Inc., the Toronto-based media company controlled by Moses Znaimer.
The Honourable Mélanie Joly is the Minister of Canadian Heritage and the Member of Parliament for Ahuntsic-Cartierville. A lawyer by training, Mélanie Joly is passionate about her city of Montréal and the power of positive politics. Mélanie worked at two major law firms in Montréal before making the leap into communications, as a managing partner of the Montréal office of the international communications firm Cohn & Wolfe. Founder of Le Vrai Changement pour Montréal party, Mélanie ran for mayor of Montréal in 2013.
Mélanie has served on numerous boards of directors, including those of the Régie des rentes du Québec, Fondation du CHUM, and Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal. She has also served as a spokesperson for Logis Rose-Virginie and as an ambassador for Herstreet. Mélanie was selected by Elle Québec as the 2008 Woman of the Year in the “up and coming" category, and was later honoured as the first Quebecer to receive the Arnold Edinborough Award for her involvement in the cultural community.
Mélanie holds an Honours Bachelor of Law from Université de Montréal and a Magister Juris in European and Comparative law from the University of Oxford.
Allen Lau is Co-founder and CEO of Wattpad. He leads the company's efforts to transform how people discover, create, and engage with stories across multiple platforms, including the top-rated Wattpad app. Today, entertainment companies work with Wattpad to adapt stories for other platforms; these stories have become blockbuster movies, hit television series, and bestselling books around the world. Allen is also a member of the Canadian Council of Innovators, a group that advances the interests of Canadian technology companies startups at all levels of government. He is also the co-founder of Two Small Fish Ventures, a fund that invests in Toronto and Waterloo-based early stage internet companies with strong network effects. Prior to Wattpad, Allen co-founded FeedM8, a mobile advertising company. Previously, he co-founded Tira Wireless where he helped leading brands optimize content for mobile delivery. Allen received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the University of Toronto's Electrical Engineering program.
Sherry D. Lee is an Associate Professor of Musicology and Associate of Trinity College at the University of Toronto. She serves as Associate Dean, Research for the Faculty of Music. Her research and teaching interests are focused in the 19th and 20th centuries and include music and culture in fin-de-siècle Vienna, opera, and music and technology. She has specialized in the music of Wagner, Mahler, Schoenberg, Berg, Schreker, Zemlinsky, and Britten, and the musical thought of Theodor W. Adorno. Her research is informed by literary and critical theory, gender studies, philosophy and aesthetics, and her book 'Adorno at the Opera' will be published by Cambridge University Press in 2016.
Jim Lidestri is CEO of BuzzAngle Music, NYC. Mr. Lidestri is a highly experienced executive in the Internet and technology markets, having spent more than three decades in the space. In that time, he has handled corporate management for Fortune 500 companies IBM and Sprint, as well as guided a startup from inception to a $70 million IPO and a $175 million secondary offering. With Border City Media, he is revolutionizing music analytics via BuzzAngle Music, which gathers data on a song or albums sales, streaming history, airplay history, and social media metrics to provide a comprehensive picture of music consumption. Jim holds a bachelors degree in computer science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and an MBA in general management from NYU. He was named one of the Top 25 Leaders of the New Millennium by Computer Reseller News magazine.
Reynolds Mastin is President and CEO of the Canadian Media Producers Association (CMPA). He develops strategic relationships with key external stakeholders, in order to ensure the continued success of Canada's independent production sector and a future for Canadian content. Prior to becoming President and CEO, Reynolds served as Chief Negotiator and Chief Legal Officer, providing strategic leadership and on a range of matters; these included intellectual property, industrial relations, Terms of Trade, Canada Media fund policies and guidelines, CRTC regulatory proceedings and corporate governance. In his professional capacity, Reynolds is a member of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Retransmission Collective (CRC) and the Executive Committee of the International Federation of Film Producers Associations (FIAPF). Prior to joining the CMPA in 2008, Reynolds served as Legal Counsel for the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB), where his files included tariff proceedings before the Copyright Board of Canada, copyright reform, and corporate governance. Reynolds began his legal career as an articling student with the CRTC, a position which gave him broad exposure to both broadcasting and telecommunications matters. Reynolds completed his Common Law (LLB) and Civil Law (LLL) Degrees at McGill University, with an exchange semester spent at the University of Arizona in Tucson. He has an Honours BA in International Relations from the University of Toronto, and his Baccalauréat en éducation from the University of Ottawa
Don McLean is Dean of the Faculty of Music of the University of Toronto, a post he has held since 2011. He was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal through the Canada Council in 2012 for his "exploration of the changing context of music in the academy and society, and innovations in infrastructure development and interdisciplinary teaching and research." From 2001 to 2010, he was Dean of the Schulich School of Music of McGill University and Chair of the Board of its award-winning Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media and Technology. On leaving McGill for UofT, Maclean's magazine columnist Paul Wells (Inkless Wells 2010) described McLean as "perhaps one of the most successful faculty heads in any discipline in any university in the past decade." He speaks internationally on the changing context of music in the academy and in society.
Trina McQueen is Adjunct Professor at Schulich School of Business where she teaches in courses on Media Management, Business and Strategic Solutions for Digital Media, and the Business of Creativity. In her media career, she has been Head of CBC TV News, Founding President of Discovery Channel, and President and COO of CTV Inc. Currently, she is vice-chair of TVO and of Historica Canada; and a board member of Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, and the Literary Review of Canada. In education, she has been a governor of the University of Waterloo, and board member of Canadian Institute for Advanced Research. She has been named to the Canadian News Hall of Fame, the Canadian Broadcasters Hall of Fame; and is an Officer of the Order of Canada. This year, she was appointed an honorary member of the Directors' Guild of Canada.
Barbara Motzney is the Chief Consumer Officer at the CRTC. In this role, she serves as a focal point ensuring that the interests and concerns of consumers are considered in Commission decision making.
Barbara's responsibilities include: data collection and industry monitoring; research; economic and financial analysis; ownership and acquisitions; social, consumer and strategic policy; corporate planning and reporting; multiplatform and network technology; and international affairs. Together, these functions provide the tools, information, and intelligence necessary for the work of the CRTC to be accessible and responsive to the needs and expectations of Canadians.
Barbara has held policy and corporate leadership positions with Public Safety Canada, Canadian Heritage, Health Canada, and Industry Canada where she has worked on government priorities including: the Beyond the Border Action Plan; copyright reform legislation, the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games; and the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.
Barbara graduated from the University of Western Ontario with a Bachelor of Arts in Financial and Administrative Studies, and holds a Master of Business Administration from Concordia University.
Rachel Noonan is currently the Director of Marketing, Communications, Creative and Editorial at the Toronto International Film Festival. Rachel has 12 years of experience in strategy development, integrated consumer brand marketing and insight development in the entertainment and media industries. She has worked in film, fashion, technology and music; leading efforts for brands such as Pony Footwear, The Canadian Film Centre, Worldwide Short Film Festival, Alliance (now eOne), Rdio/Vdio, Samsung and Microsoft. Rachel has launched two brands during her career, re-launched a heritage brand, developed first-to-market API integration partnerships and built a hybrid technology/music brand from the ground up. She has just completed her Masters of Design in Strategic Foresight and Innovation at OCAD.
Ami Shah is a Co-Founder & CEO of Peekapak, an edtech startup that teaches social-emotional learning skills like self-regulation, empathy and team work in the class and home. Peekapak is backed by; Silicon Valley based accelerator, Imagine K12, the Edtech vertical of Y Combinator.
Ami has earned a MBA from INSEAD. She has gained extensive marketing experience through roles at Procter & Gamble, and most recently, as Director of Retail Marketing at a consumer products start-up. Ami is passionate about improving youth education, and has previously taught in K-4 classrooms and advised & volunteered at education-related non-profit organizations.
Chris Unwin is Founder and Executive Director of Free, a cultural incubator catalyzing mass collaboration between companies and creators. Their community-powered channel, #TheCreatorClass, is a collaborative dispatch on creator culture reaching millions globally, with recognition from Booooooom, Creativity, Fast Company, Highsnobiety, Hypebeast, It's Nice That, Nowness and Vimeo.
Free's corporate partnerships are transforming the way in which companies relate and create with their audience, while providing a new generation of creatives a new outlet for education, distribution, resources, and commercial opportunities so they can build a career doing what they love.
Free's community comes together in a 6500 square foot studio located in the heart of Toronto's creative core. The collaborative environment features training, production resources, and on-going cultural experiences, providing a vivid image of the future of millennial work.
Prior to Free, Unwin was a senior strategist at Bell Media, most notably helping guide leading youth brands MuchMusic and MTV Canada through digital, social transformations.
Dr. David A. Wolfe is Professor of Political Science at the University of Toronto Mississauga and Co-Director of the Innovation Policy Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs. From 2009 to 2014 he was the Royal Bank Chair in Public and Economic Policy at the University of Toronto. He has been the Principal Investigator on two Major Collaborative Research Initiatives funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the first on Innovation Systems and Economic Development: The Role of Local and Regional Clusters in Canada and the second on
Prof. Wolfe has published extensively on cluster dynamics, innovation policy and related knowledge-based economic development. He is the editor or co-editor of ten books and numerous scholarly articles. His most recent book, co-edited with Meric Gertler, is Growing Urban Economies: Innovation, Creativity and Governance in Canadian City-Regions.