Keynote Speakers and Plenaries

Welcoming Remarks

Sunday, October 2
10:00 am – 10:15 am

Conference Co-Chairs, Janel Smith-Duguid and Shree Shinde,
with the APPI President, Misty Sklar 


Keynote Speaker – David Miller
The Modern Green Economy & Climate Change

Sunday, October 2
10:15 am – 11:30 am

Beauvert Room

Learning Units: 1.5

President & CEO, WWF Canada & 63rd Mayor of Toronto. David Miller is President and CEO of World Wildlife Fund – Canada, Canada’s foremost conservation organization. He was Mayor of Toronto from 2003 to 2010 and Chair of the influential C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group from 2008 - 2010. David Miller is an adjunct Professor at York University and a member of the Board of Governors for Centennial College.


Plenary – Dennis Cuku
The Mosaic Centre: A Case Study on Alberta’s Building of The Future

Monday, October 3
9:00 am - 10:00 am

Learning Units: 1.0

Now complete, The Mosaic Centre for Conscious Community and Commerce stands proud in south Edmonton as the world’s most northerly net-zero office building and the crown jewel of Edmonton’s sustainability movement. In this presentation, Dennis will share all of the ingredients in the Mosaic Centre’s special (but not secret) recipe. Taking a planning and financial focus, he will discuss creative solutions – from leasing strategy to technology all the way to internal and external community integration. In addition, Dennis will address the physical, economic and social impacts the building had on the surrounding community. If successful, this presentation will leave you inspired to re-imagine what is possible in the built environment.

In 2007 Dennis co-founded Oil Country Engineering and the Mosaic Family of Companies — a knowledge-worker collective designed to effect positive social change through business. Dennis is trained as a mechanical engineer and has expertise in drilling rigs and corporate culture design. Paradoxically, his passion lies in the arenas of human happiness and sustainable innovations. Dennis’ recent project, The Mosaic Centre for Conscious Community and Commerce, was completed in February 2015 and is the crown jewel of sustainable building in Edmonton, becoming the first Net Zero energy commercial office building in Alberta — an example of oil and gas abundance igniting innovative sustainable projects. He operates on the manifesto that Normal is Broken and has dedicated his work to enthusiastically abolishing status quo.


Closing Plenary — Gary Willson and Doug Leighton
Promoting Planning: A Call to Action

With a new government, an opportunity exists to promote the role of planners.  Doug Leighton of Brookfield Residential and Gary Willson of GW Associates have recognized the opportunity and will inform conference attendants of the ongoing efforts in planning advocacy. 

Learning Units: 1.0

Gary Willson RPP, MCIP, GW Associates

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Gary obtained a BA in Urban Geography from UBC and a Masters of Environmental Design (Planning) from U of C.  He focuses about 25% of his career on Public Sector Planner, 25% on Senior Management Private Sector and about half on career consulting all focusing on various aspects of community and environmental planning, stakeholder involvement, government relations. He’s worked on the Community Engagement component of the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Environmental Impact Assessment; the permitting of the Air Liquide facility in Strathcona County; the Bow River Impact Assessment; and worked with the Ontario Waste Management Corporation.

Doug Leighton RPP, MCIP Brookfield Residential

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Doug Leighton is a proponent of planning and urban design as a way of creating more successful and sustainable communities. He has over thirty years’ experience as a professional planner and architect working in both the public and private sectors.

Doug was recently appointed as VP, Sustainability for Brookfield Residential Properties, one of North America’s leading homebuilding and residential land developers. Doug’s previous positions with Brookfield included VP Planning, Calgary Communities and Director of Planning, Vancouver Island (2009).

Before joining Brookfield, Doug was principal of a leading New Zealand consultancy; where he helped to develop the NZ Urban Design Protocol, co-founded Urban Design Forum NZ, led the master-planning of the government’s sustainable development showcase (Hobsonville Point), and advised clients as diverse as Auckland International Airport, Housing NZ, Waterfront Auckland and Shania Twain.

Doug was founding Director of Planning and Development for the Town of Banff (where he helped establish the Banff Housing and Heritage Corporations and led the Downtown Enhancement project); served as Senior Planner for Whistler (where he oversaw the planning and design of Whistler Village North); and worked as an architect/planner in Vancouver and Calgary on projects including Expo 86 and the Calgary LRT system.

His projects have won multiple planning and design awards; he has served on several design panels and as a regular guest lecturer, critic and expert witness.

Doug holds degrees in geography (BA Hons Geog) and environmental design (ME Des Arch) from the University of Calgary; and has served as a director of the Alberta, New Zealand and British Columbia Planning Institutes.

Learning Units: 1.0


Closing Remarks

Tuesday October 4
11:45 am – 12:00 pm

Conference Co-Chairs, Janel Smith-Duguid and Shree Shinde