Diversity@Work 2016 Speakers

Our speakers will be exploring innovation and change in addressing current and future workplace diversity, equity and inclusion trends and issues: inter-generational differences, legal perspectives, unconscious biases, sexuality and sexual identity, visible and non-visible disabilities, impact of technology on workplace diversity, diversity and the marketplace.


Renu Mandhane | Chief Commissioner | Ontario Human Rights Commission

Renu Mandhane is the former Executive Director of the International Human Rights Program at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law. She has an LL.M in international human rights law from New York University, and is a recognized expert. Renu sits on the Canada Committee of Human Rights Watch, and has appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada and the United Nations. She has also trained Canadian and foreign judges through the National Judicial Institute of Canada. Renu has worked at several domestic and international organizations to advance women’s human rights, and has represented survivors of domestic and sexual violence and federally sentenced prisoners. Renu was appointed Chief Commissioner of the Ontario Human Rights Commission in October 2015.


Zanita DiSalle | Regional Vice President, West Brampton  |  RBC Royal Bank

As Regional Vice President, West Brampton, Zanita DiSalle leads a team of 150 employees in providing financial advice and services to RBC’s personal and small business clients across 12 branches in one of Canada’s fastest growing communities. Since joining RBC in 2005, Mrs. DiSalle has held a variety of leadership, account management and sales coaching positions in personal, business and commercial banking. Prior to that, Mrs. DiSalle also held commercial and personal account management positions at other leading Canadian financial institutions. Mrs. DiSalle is currently on the United Way of Peel Region Campaign Cabinet, serves on the  Advisory Committee for: Opening Doors: Improving Prosperity for Immigrant Women and is on the Diversity Leadership Council for Canadian Banking at RBC Royal Bank. Mrs. DiSalle received her MBA from the Ivy School of Business, where she was on the Dean’s Honour Role.


Morris Beckford | Director, Community Health and Wellness | Access Alliance Multicultural Health and Community Services

Morris has been actively involved in education and social services sector for over 15 years and believes that having physical spaces in communities where people can gather and help build their own health and wellbeing is a key determinant of good health that both the public and private sector needs to nurture.


Angela Connors | Embracing Inclusion Project Manager | The Ontario Network of Employment Skills Training Projects (ONESTEP)

Angela Connors is an Ojibway from the Saugeen First Nation whose strong commitment to social justice is fuelled by her ancestry. Angela is currently managing the Embracing Inclusion Project, working towards sustainable social change within the non-profit sector.


Colin Druhan | Executive Director | Pride at Work Canada

Colin Druhan is passionate about improving the climate of inclusion for LGBT employees in Canadian workplaces. As Executive Director of Pride at Work Canada he maintains operational accountability for the delivery of the organization’s national strategy, programs, and initiatives.


Wade Poziomka | Human Rights and Labour Lawyer | Ross & MsBride

Wade joined Ross & McBride LLP in 2010 and practices predominantly in human rights law, appearing frequently before the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario.


Megan Thomas | Executive Director | Vaughan In Action Community Program Inc.

Megan has been working in the Social Service sector for 15 years. Formally the Director of Disability Services with JVS Toronto, she recently accepted the position of Executive Director with a non-profit organization in York Region that assists individuals with developmental disabilities / Vaughan in Action. Megan has extensive experience with not only disability programming, but also with Self Employment, Employment, Youth Justice and Youth Leadership programming as well.


Mike Richards | Partner | DLA Piper

Michael S. Richards is a partner specializing in employment and labour law in Toronto.  Michael was called to the bar in both Ontario and British Columbia and has represented clients before various levels of courts in both provinces, before administrative tribunals, at  arbitrations, in mediation and at other negotiations, including collective bargaining.


Laura Gibbon | Specialist, Education and Training | The 519

The 519 is committed to the health, happiness and full participation of the LGBTQ community. A City of Toronto agency with an innovative model of Service, Space and Leadership, they strive to make a real difference in people’s lives, while working to promote inclusion, understanding and respect


Tana Turner | Principal | Turner Consulting Group

Located in the Toronto area, the Turner Consulting Group offers a range of services to help clients create a diverse workforce and inclusive work environment, comply with employment equity legislation, meet their research and policy development needs, and evaluate programs.


Genevieve Farrell |Instructor |Ted Rogers School of Management | Ryerson University

Genevieve Farrell is an Instructor of Organizational Behaviour and Human Resources Management in the Ted Rogers School of Management and the Chang School of Continuing Education, Ryerson University. Genevieve has won 5 teaching awards at and has been recognized by the Ryerson Aboriginal Student Services team for her support of their work. Genevieve firmly believes in student engagement and is very committed to diversity and equity.  Genevieve is a member of the Positive Space and No Barriers committees at Ryerson University.


Monica McKay|Director, Aboriginal Initiatives | Ryerson University

Monica currently works as the Director of Aboriginal Initiatives at Ryerson University. She is a member of the Nisga’a Nation and from Laxgalts’ap (Greenville), British Columbia,  Huwilp (house) of Heewa’a, and of the Gisk’aast (Killerwhale) Pdeek(clan). She has and continues to be involved with Aboriginal initiatives at the local, provincial and national level.  Monica utilizes Nisga’a edicts, and key philosophies to create, sustain and advance Aboriginal Initiatives at Ryerson University.


Ian Sun | Director | Anansi Tek

Ian Sun was a CBC camera footage producer and editor for over 20 years prior to opening his own television and movie production studio. Ian is the Director of Anansi Tek; a not-for-profit technological educational firm that helps young people understand how to become influencers in this ever changing world of technology.