MAY 24, 2018 | OTTAWA

                                                                                       ALGONQUIN COLLEGE, 1385 Woodroffe Ave, Nepean, ON K2G 1V8

                                                                                                                           Building D (Salons A, B, C)

What is IMPACT AI?

IMPACT AI is Ottawa’s first artificial intelligence conference and this SOLD OUT event will take place on May 24, 2018.

The flagship MindBridge AI conference will feature over 15 speakers who will share a wealth of information on applied AI and its transformational impact on the future of the workforce.

introducing our speakers


CTO, Strategic Partnerships and Data Science at IBM Canada

Leon is an award-winning international speaker and a published author. A technologist at heart, Leon’s focus is always on value creation using technology rather than the technology itself. As the Director and CTO of Strategic Partnerships and Data Science Ecosystem, Leon leads a team of Data Scientists focused on Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, Big Data and Blockchain.


Senior Advisor at Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat

Michael Karlin is a Senior Advisor at the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, where he specializes in public policy considerations of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and the internet of things. Over his 10-year career with the federal public service, he’s had fun providing advice to senior officials and Ministers on complex ethical and public policy issues including digital identity, privacy, data sharing, and organizational change. In this capacity, he has won numerous policy and innovation awards.


Veteran BNN Anchor

Michael Hainsworth is Canada’s Most-Watched Business reporter and a veteran BNN Anchor. Michael spent 17 years distilling the day’s most important financial and technology stories into understandable and engaging reports for 2.2 million viewers on BNN and CTV News. A talented broadcaster and journalist, Hainsworth co-created the world’s first weekly television show dedicated to mobile technology, App Central, seen by more than a million viewers in Canada, Europe and Australia, and is the co-host of one of Canada’s most popular podcasts, Geeks & Beats with radio legend Alan Cross.


Vice President Information Technology at MD FInancial Management

Valerie is a seasoned technology executive, innovation and disruption enthusiast currently serving as a VP, Information Technology at MD Financial Management. Valerie identifies the opportunities created through social, political and technology disruption, creates partnerships, and applies a client-centered innovation process to create experiences, products, and services that delight customers.


CEO, collectiveIQ

Karla is the veteran of creating marketing and strategy experience for top global and domestic brands Canada Post, CIBC Wood Gundy, Empire Life, Homemakers Magazine amongst many. She is the CEO and co-founder of collectiveIQ, an open agency, comprised of over 200 freelance professionals from strategists to storytellers, designers to data scientists, in Canada. In her career spanning two decades, she held leadership positions namely, the Executive Vice President at WPP/Young & Rubicam Canada, responsible for country leadership of the Ford of Canada business spanning multiple marketing agencies. Karla is a speaker, mother and an influencer.


CEO at IMRSV Data Labs

Samuel is an engineer and a lawyer. He is the co-founder and CEO of an Ottawa startup specializing in natural language processing. Their customer list includes Fortune 1000 companies where IMRSV technology is used for a variety of data processing needs.


CEO at SalesChoice Inc.

Cindy Gordon is the Founder and CEO of SalesChoice, an AI SaaS predictive and prescriptive guided selling company. She is also an expert in SaaS, AI, business innovation, early-stage software commercialization and sales /marketing practices. She has held senior leadership and partnership roles in global B2B enterprises, including Accenture, Xerox, Citicorp and Nortel Networks.


SVP, Products & Innovation at Klick Health

Keith is a management professional with over 20 years of experience working on innovation enablement, product strategy, commercial team development and eco-system partnerships. He ‘connects the dots’ across industries and disciplines to create new market opportunities. Keith has co-founded an international innovation consultancy and help start a 250+ person interactive entertainment studio. He has worked with brands such as Nike, Microsoft, Sony, United Health Group and Boeing to bring new products, services, and experiences to market. Currently, he is focused on harnessing the potential of new technologies and techniques such as data science, behavioral science, cloud infrastructure and startup methodologies to drive innovation in commercial healthcare.


Managing Director, Hawk Capital Group

Tom is currently a Managing Partner of Hawk Capital Advisors, a mid-market firm providing independent financial and strategic advice including M&A, capital raise and restructuring services to clients in the defense, security, manufacturing, health technology, biotechnology and innovation sectors.Tom is also co-leading Hawk’s effort to launch a venture capital fund to support early-stage entrepreneurs in the tech innovation space. The fund is scheduled to launch in Q4 2018 as the largest debut fund in Canada.


CEO, Systelos

Jad is founder and CEO of Systelos, an AI powered platform that is reinventing how financial experts deliver value to their clients. After spending 15 years developing top producing advisors, Jad witnessed systemic breakdowns in the wealth management industry. Jad’s mission is to create a new breed of financial experts that is augmented with the power of machine learning and collective intelligence. Jad is a Harvard Business School alumni, holds a Bachelor in Engineering, and is a Fellow of the Canadian Securities institute.


Risk Advisory Partner, EY

Cathy Cobey is a Partner in EY’s Risk practice,advising clients on the risk and control implications of both legacy and emerging technologies. She leads a global team that considers the ethical and control implications of artificial intelligence and autonomous systems.Cathy leverages her unique background as a CPA and Technology Risk Advisor, with her involvement with EY’s Climate Change & Sustainability practice to consider the full spectrum of technological and societal implications in intelligent automation development.


CEO, Compass and country lead, vLex Canada
An entrepreneur and entrepreneurial thinker known for doing law differently, Colin is focused on changing the way legal intelligence is incorporated into research and knowledge management. During his time leading Canada’s most-used legal information resource (CanLII), Colin was profiled by the ABA Journal as a “Legal Rebel” (2014), by Canadian Lawyer Magazine as among the “Top 25 Most Influential” (2014), and by Fastcase as a member of the 2013 Fastcase 50 class of legal innovators and visionaries. He is a speaker, author, advisor, instigator and collaborator in legal tech and startup space, and a non-practicing member of the Ontario and Alberta bars. HIs professional background also includes senior legal, policy, business and government relations roles in the telecommunications industry.


Vice President, Innovation and Quality at the Ottawa Hospital

Alan J. Forster MD, FRCPC, MSc is a general internist; Vice President, Innovation and Quality at the Ottawa Hospital; Vice Chair Quality and Clinical Services, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ottawa. He is a Professor of Medicine at the University of Ottawa and Senior Scientist in the Clinical Epidemiology Program at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.


Chief Officer, Practice Innovation, Pricing & Knowledge Services, Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP

Before joining Blakes, Carla practiced commercial litigation, following which she was Senior Counsel for the litigation team at one of Canada’s largest banks. She is a Past President of the Association of Corporate Counsel’s Ontario Chapter. She joined Blakes in 2011 and leads the teams responsible for Practice Innovation, Knowledge Management, Pricing, Library and Research Services, Records Management and Enterprise Data and Analytics. Her role includes developing and supporting alternative fee arrangements and leading legal project management and process improvement practices.


Managing Director and Chief Risk Officer for Citibank Canada

Tony chairs the Risk Committee and manages credit, market, liquidity, operational and cyber risk on behalf of Citi in Canada.He is the Executive in Residence, Rotman School of Management.Tony has had leadership roles in asset liability management, capital market financing, structured derivatives, securitization and corporate insurance at several global banks and is also an active mentor of Fintech startups.


Litigator at McCarthy Tetrault

Carole is a litigator at McCarthy Tetrault. She is the firm lead on artificial intelligence and an active member of the firm’s Cybersecurity, Privacy and Data Management group. She co-authored the firm’s White Paper entitled “From Chatbots to Self-Driving Cars: The Legal Risks of Adopting Artificial Intelligence in Your Business”, and regularly writes and speaks on the topic of AI and the law.


Chief Information Officer Director General Knowledge, Information & Technology Services, National Research Council Canada

Paul is the Chief Information Officer at the National Research Council of Canada. In this role Paul provides the leadership for NRC’s Information Technology, Information and Data Management as well as the National Science Library. Paul is also very active in a number of collaborative Government initiatives with his colleague CIOs from across government and in tandem with key external stakeholders. A seasoned public-servant, Paul has held senior leadership roles since 2004 primarily in the area of Information Systems. Paul has lead IM/IT transformation initiatives as CIO of Justice Canada and Library and Archives Canada. He chaired an International consortium of 40 countries focused on web preservation and is a member of a number of councils and boards.


Executive Director, Center for Machine Learning and Health, Carnegie Mellon University

Joe Marks has been a technological innovator in five different industries over the past 30 years. Joe holds degrees in Applied Mathematics & Computer Science from Harvard University. His areas of expertise include AI, human-computer interaction, and computer graphics. He has managed over $100M of research spend at Mitsubishi Electric and at The Walt Disney Company. He has also worked on DARPA-sponsored research projects for the US government, and he has co-founded two start-ups. He is currently the Executive Director of the Center for Machine Learning and Health at Carnegie Mellon University.


Institute Director, Research at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute - University Health Network

Dr. Popovic is also a Professor (Tenured) in the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Toronto. He is the co-founder and director of (i) MyndTec; (ii) the CentRe for Advancing Neurotechnological Innovation to Application (CRANIA) at the University Health Network and the University of Toronto; (iii) the Neuromodulation Institute at the University of Toronto; and (iv) the Canadian Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Association. He is also the founder of the Rehabilitation Engineering Laboratory at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute – University Health Network. Dr. Popovic held the Toronto Rehab Chair in Spinal Cord Injury Research appointment from 2007 until 2017. Dr. Popovic’s fields of expertise are functional electrical stimulation, neuroprostheses, neuro-rehabilitation, neuromodulation, brain machine interfaces, physiological control systems, assistive technology, modeling and control of linear and non-linear dynamic systems, robotics, and signal processing.


Dean of the Faculty of Engineering at University of Ottawa

After graduating from the University of Ottawa with a bachelor’s degree (Physics, 1985) and a master’s degree (Physics, 1987), Jacques Beauvais obtained his Ph.D. in physics from Université Laval in 1990. He then pursued post-doctoral studies in electrical engineering at the University of Glasgow, UK. His training in optics coupled to his experience in engineering led to his appointment as professor of electrical engineering at the Université de Sherbrooke (UdeS) in 1993.In 2007, Jacques Beauvais was named Vice-president, Research, at the Université de Sherbrooke and then Vice-president, Research, Innovation and Entrepreneurship in 2014. He was responsible for the Université for the development of the concept, the funding and the launch of the MiQro Innovation Collaborative Centre (C2MI) in Bromont, Québec, in partnership with IBM Canada and Teledyne Dalsa, and he developed and implemented the Innovation, Partnership and Entrepreneurship strategy of the Université. He is currently a member of the research council of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CiFAR) and a board member of Mitacs. He was a member of the council of the National Research Council of Canada (2009-2012) and also a member of the board of directors of the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et Technologies (2009-2016).


Director of Legal Knowledge Engineering at Kira Systems

Anne manages a team of legal professionals who create Kira’s built-in machine learning models. She previously practiced M&A and securities law at Goodmans LLP in Toronto. Anne holds a J.D. from Osgoode Hall Law School, a B.Soc.Sc. from the University of Ottawa and a B.Com from McGill University

Mohamed Musbah

Head of Product at Microsoft Research Montreal

Mohamed Musbah is Head of Product at Microsoft Research Montreal, and former vice president of product at Maluuba, a Canadian AI company that’s helping machines to think, reason, and communicate seamlessly with humans (acquired by Microsoft in January 2017). Mo leads the development of products at Microsoft Research Montreal alongside the lab’s language understanding and deep learning teams. Previously, Mo worked in product management at Microsoft and Facebook.

Heather Evans

Senior Advisor, Advanced Technologies, Province of Ontario

Heather is an entrepreneur turned civil servant (for now). She works for the Province of Ontario as a Senior Advisor in Advanced Technologies specifically, focused on Artificial Intelligence (AI), Quantum Technologies as well as internal adoption of new technologies.Prior to joining the public sector, Heather cofounded a deep learning automatic speech recognition company, Spreza (now open sourced) and a 3D printing technology company, Mosaic Manufacturing (still in operation, learn more at She is a graduate of Queen’s Commerce and is an alumnus of the Next36 program. She also co-hosts the AskAI podcast (coming soon) and has been overseeing the Negotiations and Policy components of the Youth Seven (side engagement for the G7) Summit in alignment with the Canada’s Presidency. In August 2018, she will be moving to Beijing as a Schwarzman Scholar to expand her understanding of global politics and technology policy.She is passionate about discussing and discovering the best ways to prepare for the future of work, and to raise awareness and understanding of technological advances.

Julie Leese

Chief Information Officer and Director General, Technology and Information Management Services at Transport Canada

Julie has been with Transport Canada since May 2016 and is leading the modernization and renewal of the department’s national IM/IT program and is facilitating the development of Transport Canada’s Digital Strategy in collaboration with her colleagues across the department.As part of the transformation of the IM/IT program at Transport Canada, Julie has engaged her team using design thinking practices to redefine how they work, how they engage, and how they will embed ‘digital’ into the business of the department and for its clients. Working with her colleagues, Julie is helping to drive oversight modernization at Transport Canada in key areas such as online services delivery, mobilizing the inspectorate, building capacity in BI and advanced data analytics and publishing the department’s open data, as well as the renewal and rationalization of the department’s portfolio of safety and security applications.Julie’s started her career with the federal public service as a cartographer with the Department of National Defence. Her career spans close to 33 years and eight different departments in a number of different areas including geomatics, program delivery, service excellence, change management and of course, IM/IT. Julie is an active member of the Government of Canada’s CIO community and has also established a Women CIO forum to advance dialogue and action in promoting women in technology.

Dr. Chris Janzen

Dean of the Faculty of Technology and Trades at Algonquin College

Dr. Christopher Janzen is an educator and a scientist. He received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Hamline University in St. Paul Minnesota. After earning his Ph.D. in chemistry from Texas A&M University and spending two years as a post-doctoral fellow at the US National Institutes of Health, he spent 20 years teaching and conducting research in environmental science. During this time, Dr. Janzen also spent seven years serving in municipal government as an elected public official. Upon moving to Canada in 2012, he joined Algonquin College and took on the role of Dean. He provides leadership and support for the large and diverse collection of programs in technology and skilled trades and Algonquin College.

Rafik Goubran

Chancellor’s Professor and Vice-President (Research and International) at Carleton University

Rafik Goubran received the B.Sc. degree in electronics and communications engineering and the M.Sc. degree in electrical engineering from Cairo University, Egypt, in 1978 and 1981, respectively, and the Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada, in 1987.
He is now a Chancellor’s Professor and Vice-President (Research and International) at Carleton University. He was involved in several research projects with industry and government organizations in the areas of digital signal processing, biomedical engineering, sensors, data analytics, microphone arrays, and the design of smart homes for the independent living of seniors. Dr. Goubran co-supervised 85 Master’s and PhD students at Carleton, and co-authored over 300 international publications and 10 patents.
Dr. Goubran served as Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Design from 2006 to 2016 and as Chair of the Department of Systems and Computer Engineering from 1997 to 2006. He was the Founding Director of the Ottawa-Carleton Institute for Biomedical Engineering from 2006 to 2009. Dr. Goubran is a fellow of the IEEE, a fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering, a member of the Association of Professional Engineers of Ontario, and an affiliate investigator with the Bruyère Research Institute.

Darin Briskman

Data Scientist and Engineer with Amazon Web Services

Darin Briskman is a data scientist and engineer with Amazon Web Services, working on Database, Analytics, and Machine Learning services, connecting developers with the AWS engineering team and helping technical professionals worldwide get the greatest benefit from a range of data architectures, including Amazon SageMaker and other Machine Learning services. DR Briskman joined Amazon in 2016 after 30 years of experience in Enterprise Technologies, including work at NASA, IBM and Silicon Valley startups.

Shadi Khalifa

Postdoctoral Fellow at Queen's Centre for Advanced Computing

Currently a Post Doctoral Fellow at the Queen’s Center for Advanced Computing, Kingston, Shadi works on Cognitive and Big Data Analytics projects that have both an industrial and an academic partner. Previously, he was an IBM CAS researcher, a member of the Database Systems Lab (DSL) and an NSERC CREATE graduate specialized in Ultra Large Scale Systems. He earned my PhD in 2017 with a specialization in distributing machine learning algorithms to work on Big Data. This work was done under the supervision of Prof. Patrick Martin at the School of Computing in Queen’s University. He is the developer of the QDrill, the Distributed Analytics for Big Data engine and the HSBT, the NS2 high speed Bluetooth simulation model.

Sophia Leong

Executive Director, Telfer Executive MBA Program, University of Ottawa

Sophia is currently Executive Director of uOttawa Telfer Executive MBA Program, Council Member of Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, Executive-in-Residence of Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance and Advisory Board Member for Startup Canada. She co-founded three companies and was previously Vice-President of Business Development of KLOCwork Solutions, a software solution company she commercialized from Nortel Networks.
Sophia has extensive strategic and general management experience working with technology companies and on executive education. Sophia had advised over 100 companies and worked with Ottawa’s Forty Under 40 business leaders on Self Leadership and Self Branding. While she was with Nortel Networks, she was directly engaged in commercializing business ventures by leveraging angel and venture capital markets. Sophia was involved with management of seven business ventures, three of which were global, involving technologies such as neural technology, speech recognition, e-commerce payment, digital content management/protection and mission critical assessment applications for software assets. She represented the interest of Nortel Networks when working with respective General Managers and was responsible in providing timely reporting to the respective Board of Directors.
She is a recipient of numerous awards for outstanding contribution and was awarded a patent on software business process for Mergers and Acquisition during her time at Nortel Networks and Nortel Technology. She is currently Chair/Board Member of a few start-ups and has successfully exited from two startups that she co-founded.

Justin Ferrabee

Chief Operating Officer, Payments Canada

As Chief Operating Officer at Payments Canada, Justin Ferrabee is responsible for information and payment technology, corporate functions – including security and human resources – as well as market strategy and industry engagement.

Justin is an accomplished senior leader with more than 20 years of executive experience growing and transforming organizations, from complex global businesses to advanced public sector entities. Justin’s transformational change expertise has been a critical part of the evolution of the Payments Canada organization and continues to shape the transformation taking place in the payments ecosystem through Payments Canada’s Modernization program.

Anthony de Fazekas

Head of Technology and Innovation, Canada

Anthony de Fazekas’ practice focuses on all areas of information technology law, including the formation of winning IP strategies and the development and prosecution of original patent applications in a wide range of IT-related technologies. He has also handled all aspects of high-profile in-bound and out-bound technology licensing transactions and has developed cutting-edge legal templates for numerous significant IT companies. He is the head of Norton Rose Fulbright’s technology and innovation practice in Canada. Mr. de Fazekas has worked extensively in the innovation sector with many research institutions, large corporate innovators, startups and scaling technology companies. He has a proven track record in helping drive the acceleration, and increased valuation, of technology startups. Mr. de Fazekas has a thorough understanding of the technology and business objectives of his clients and transfers this knowledge to client service teams. He brings creativity, sector insight and business-mindedness to all client projects.

The Honourable Navdeep Bains

Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

Navdeep Bains was a distinguished visiting professor at Ryerson University’s Ted Rogers School of Management and holds an MBA with a specialization in Finance. As a Certified Management Accountant, he has worked several years in accounting and financial analysis for the Ford Motor Company of Canada.

Navdeep is a long-time resident of both Mississauga and Brampton and has strong ties to the social and cultural associations of Mississauga–Malton. Navdeep has been active in a variety of community organizations, as a board member for the Mississauga Food Bank, having worked with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the Guru Gobind Singh Children’s Foundation, as well as having served as an Ontario board member with the Heart and Stroke Foundation. He is the recipient of a number of awards recognizing his work in promoting diversity within his community.

Having served as the Member of Parliament for Mississauga–Brampton South from 2004 to 2011, Navdeep gained extensive experience as the Parliamentary Secretary to Prime Minister Paul Martin and as the Critic for Public Works and Government Services, the Treasury Board, International Trade, Natural Resources, and Small Business and Tourism.

Dr. Larry Heck

Senior VP and Co-Head of Global Artificial Intelligence Research at Samsung Electronics

Dr. Larry Heck is a Senior Vice President and Co-Head of Artificial Intelligence Research at Samsung Electronics. From 2014-2017, he was a Research Director at Google, leading an advanced Dialogue R&D effort behind the Google Assistant. From 2009-­2014, he was the Chief Scientist of the Microsoft Speech products team and later a Distinguished Engineer in Microsoft Research. In 2009, he co­-founded the initiative that led to Microsoft’s Cortana personal assistant. From 2005-2009, he was Vice President at Yahoo! responsible for Search and Advertising quality. From 1998-2005, he was with Nuance Communications and served as Vice President of R&D. He began his career as a researcher at the Stanford Research Institute (1992-1998) initially in acoustics and later in speech research with the Speech Technology and Research (STAR) Laboratory. Dr. Heck received the PhD in Electrical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1991. He is a Fellow of the IEEE, published 100+ scientific papers and holds 50+ United States patents. He was inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Engineering Alumni at Georgia Tech and received the Distinguished Engineer Award from the Texas Tech University Whitacre College of Engineering.

Dr. Joel Martin

Director of Research and Development for Digital Technologies at the National Research Council of Canada

Dr. Joel Martin leads a group of 80+ researchers and developers focusing on data analytics and machine learning applied in a variety of areas such as machine translation and computer vision. Dr. Martin spent his 25-year career both in academia and in the government investigating machine-learning techniques applied to natural language and bioinformatics. He holds an M.Sc. and Ph.D. from Georgia Institute of Technology in Artificial Intelligence (1987, 1992). He also earned a Master’s degree in Cognitive Psychology from the University of Manitoba (1986).

                         Introducing our Sponsors


Algonquin College Amazon AWS


Microsoft Samsung


Carleton University Norton Rose FulbrightuOttawa Telfer


Invest Ottawa L-Spark Kanata North BIA Startup Canada eSax Tie


seoplus+ digital marketing sponsor Iversoft



                         Message from the Chair

Dear IMPACT AI attendee,

It is a pleasure to warmly welcome you to our foremost IMPACT AI conference and I thank you for being a part of it. Our vision is to put Canada and Ottawa on the map with regards to leadership in artificial intelligence (AI). The innovation landscape in Canada is supported by the talent, research hubs, government funding and a growing base of AI companies. With such backing, Canada is poised to drive AI leadership on the world stage. AI is an exciting area in which to work/study/ play, and we’ll continue to meet and bring inspired leaders together in forums like this, to ensure IMPACT AI is able to help Canada and Ottawa claim its rightful position as an AI leader.

There is no shortage of future forecasters to tell us how the changes brought by AI will play out, but at the end of the day, every change requires enterprises, industries, governments and academic institutions to be open towards it, to break the myths, accept it and then adopt it into their everyday lives and business visions. IMPACT AI will focus on the here and now of AI, with its 2018 theme— Applied AI: Artificial Intelligence in the Real World and the Transfor-mation of the Future Workforce. We believe this year’s theme will inspire many such conversations. Our inspiring speakers will be presenting on a range of topics within the Applied AI theme, such as using AI to improve the delivery of government services, the presentation of awe-inspiring use cases of AI, preparing the workforce for the AI revolution and AI’s impact on healthcare, financial and legal services.

I hope you will enjoy this opportunity to be a part of IMPACT AI 2018. Before I close, I’d like to thank each of you for attending our conference and bringing your expertise to our gathering. You, as organization leaders, have the vision, the knowledge, the wherewithal and the experience to help us pave our way into the future. You are truly our greatest asset today and tomorrow, and we could not accomplish what we do without your support and leadership. Throughout this conference, I ask you to stay engaged, keep us proactive and help shape the future of AI.

Sincerely yours,

Eli Fathi



Algonquin College 1385 Woodroffe Avenue Ottawa, ON K2G1V8

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