2019 Summit Speakers
We are excited to have a dynamic line-up of speakers, panelists and moderators at the ActiveCITY Summit.
Chief Evolution Officer of Vivo for Healthier Generations
Cynthia Watson has “reverse engineered” her life’s dedication to wellness by starting with palliative care and seniors, to working with adults and young developing athletes to now focusing on youth, children and future generations.
Currently, Cynthia Watson is Chief Evolution Officer of Vivo for Healthier Generations, a charitable enterprise on a mission to raise healthier generations in Calgary and beyond. She loves to tinker, test and prototype with evidence, innovation and collaboration to co-create local solutions to national challenges like physical inactivity and sedentary behaviour. She has a passion for being an explorer and leader with heart. She is happiest surfing ambiguity in a lifelong quest to embolden others to make a bigger difference in the world.
In her parallel universe, she is a yoga teacher, entrepreneur, mentor for developing leaders and business coach for small business owners and nonprofit organizations. She is a graduate of the Royal Roads University Master of Arts in Leadership.
Associate Professor & Associate Director Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Mount Royal University
Dr. David Finch’s professional background reflects a commitment to the convergence of theory and practice. David holds a PhD in management and is an active educator, scholar and practitioner. David currently holds several academic appointments including Associate Professor at Mount Royal University’s Bissett School of Business in Calgary, Alberta, a Visiting Professor at Ohio University and Visiting Fellow at the Henley Business School at the University of Reading in the UK.
Prior to joining academia, over two decades, Dr. Finch held progressively senior roles in areas of corporate strategy in Canada, the US and the UK with Bell Canada Enterprises, Rogers Communications and Harris Corporation. In addition, Dr. Finch was a founding partner at T1 Agency, Canada’s largest sports and sponsorship marketing agency supporting brands such as Esso, Nike, Hudson’s Bay, the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, BC Ferries, The Calgary Stampede and Yellow Pages.
Hafiz is a social entrepreneur dedicated to bringing people together, using play as a medium. After co-founding Katipult, a now-public company, he knew that he was not passionate about the field of finance and decided to sell his shares to start PlayCity - a company on a mission to make the world a better place, using technology to bring people together - offline. What started as an idea to find tennis partners in the same skill level has blossomed into a national company that is supported through partnerships with organizations like The University of Calgary, The City of Calgary and most recently MEC. He is looking to partner with organizations that share a mandate of promoting physical activity, diverse relationships and increasing wellbeing in a society that spends too much time isolated and on their phones.
Chief Executive Officer, Repsol Sport Centre
Jeff was born in Toronto and raised in Winnipeg. He has been active his entire life and, through this lifelong involvement in sport Jeff was encouraged to pursue degrees in physical activity & sports studies from the University of Winnipeg and recreation studies from the University of Manitoba. In 2015, he earned his MBA from Haskayne. Jeff’s 18-year track record of leadership and management excellence was recognized in 2009 with his selection to Calgary’s Top 40 Under 40, and in 2014 with a Leaders of Tomorrow distinction. Before taking on the role of Repsol Sport Centre CEO, Jeff acted as the Executive Director of the Calgary JCC for almost nine years.
VP, Community Initiatives, ATB
Chair, Hockey Alberta Foundation
John manages a team across Alberta focused on leveraging sponsorships and programming to enhance ATB Financials brand across the province.
With experience working in the banking industry for 30 years, John has a varied background but focussed mainly on Sponsorships, Community Events, Marketing and Communications. His career at ATB Financial has seen him as VP Retail Financial Services, VP Marketing and, currently, VP Community Initiatives. John has a strong community background, chairing the Northlands Board, Hockey Alberta Foundation, Canadian Tour Professional Golf Tour (Telus Opens Edmonton), numerous charities, and programming in Edmonton and Calgary. The majority of John’s career has been spent in fundraising and sponsorship from both a partner and donor standpoint. He brings many years of expertise in this field and is extremely excited to share his knowledge with you.
Principal, Karen Ball & Associates
Karen is the Principal with Karen Ball & Associates, a culture, community and place making consultancy. She has been a thought leader and collaborator in key planning and engagement within Alberta for over 20 years including working as the Culture and Education Strategist for Calgary 2026, strategist for the Province of Alberta’s Premier’s Council for Culture and Canada 150 secretariat. She has been instrumental in creating policy and planning for infrastructure and investment programs, policies and the City’s cultural plan at the municipal level. Karen led Calgary’s year as Cultural Capital of Canada in 2012 and has worked nationally with the Canada Council for the Arts and the Banff Centre. She served on the Board of the Calgary Bid Exploration Committee (CBEC) and is on the Board of the Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations.
Senior Vice President, Resorts of the Canadian Rockies
Matt Mosteller, aka. Powder Matt is an outdoor industry executive, adventurer, blogger, author, and freelance journalist. He is a lifelong ski bum and outdoor adventurer, and sought-after writer whose work has been published in countless major city newspapers, magazines and outdoor centric websites. When not escaping Grizzly Bear attacks, running wild rivers in Northern BC, or lost in the Arctic in a mid-winter expedition, aka Powder Matt, can be found sipping craft coffee in Fernie, BC. Sharing powder tales from his role as Senior Vice President, Resorts of the Canadian Rockies.
Member of the Order of Canada
Professionally Patrick is a Petroleum Technologist (SAIT ’81) with an Education degree (UofC ‘89), facilitating his extensive international consulting work in the areas of training and organizational development. He is a Paralympian (1992 – athletics) and has served in several key roles within Paralympic and Olympic sport for 30 years. He has extensive board experience including three four-year terms on the Governing Board of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and served previously on the boards of the CPC, VANOC (2010 Winter Games), University of Guelph, WinSport, LiFT, Own the Podium currently serves on the SAIT Board of Governors. He retired from his full-time role as Executive Director of Canada Snowboard in the fall of 2018. Based on his extensive involvement with the Paralympic Movement, he was named as a Member of the Order of Canada in 2010 and the recipient of the Paralympic Order in 2018.
Director, Sport Calgary
Director at Sport Calgary, board member for Comrie's Sports Equipment Bank, ambassador for Kidsport Calgary, and on the selection comittee for the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame. Community volunteer with Kidsport and Heros Hockey. Event organizer of Flames Sportchek Summer Development Camp, Hockey Inspires Leadership Day, and Brian Burke's Targets For Kids. Asst. Manager with the Calgary Hitmen of the WHL. Community engagement and fan experiences are my priorities. Formerly of Sportsnet and Sportsnet 960 the FAN (2003-2018) as a broadcaster and talk show host.
Associate Professor, University of Calgary
Research Fellow at The School of Public Policy
Dr. Tombe is an Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Calgary and a Research Fellow at The School of Public Policy. Prior to joining the University of Calgary in 2012, he was an Assistant Professor of Economics at Wilfrid Laurier University. He received his BBA (Finance) from Simon Fraser University, and his MA and PhD (Economics) from the University of Toronto. His research focuses on a broad range of topics from international trade and public finance to energy and environmental policy. In addition to his academic work, he regularly promotes the public understanding of economics and policy issues through his numerous public policy papers through the School, active social media presence, and general interest writings in various media outlets, including regular contributions to CBC Calgary and other media outlets.
Tim Olafson is the co-founder of Stone-Olafson a research-based consulting firm based in Calgary and Toronto. Prior to Stone-Olafson we was Executive Vice President of Angus Reid Strategies, President of Ipsos Observer North America, and Regional Senior Vice president of Ipsos Canada West. He has spent his career in consulting and public opinion research working for organizations such as Air Canada, Farm Credit Canada, Blackberry, the Calgary Stampede, Microsoft, WinSport, Dell, and multiple arts and sports organizations in Alberta and across Canada.
President & CEO, Canada Sport Institute, Calgary
Dale Henwood devoted his life to sport development, the pursuit of excellence in Alberta, and to making sport in Canada better. Dale is a former hockey coach, having worked with collegiate and high-performance players in the USA and Canada. He was on the coaching staff of the 1984, 1988 and 1992 men’s Olympic hockey teams. He has worked with Hockey Alberta, Alberta Sport Council and in 1994 became the first President and CEO of the Canadian Sport Institute.
Having a place that provides athletes and their coaches with all the support they need to perform their best has always been a dream for Dale. And for the last twenty-five years, he has had the opportunity to work with a team of committed, passionate and caring experts to help keep this dream alive. In 2013, Dale was also named President of the Association of Sport Performance Centres. The Association has over 80 members from around the world.
Dale also promotes and advocates the benefits of physical activity and sport, writing and speaking to our politicians for the need for greater government commitment and involvement. He works tirelessly to speak up and advocate for the value that sport and healthy lifestyle brings to our youth. When Dale is not working, he is very involved in serving the community through his church, The Drop-in Center, Samaritans Purse and with several local or international sport organizations.
Professor, Mount Royal University & President, International Federation of Adapted Physical Activity
David Legg is a Professor and past Chair for the Department of Physical and Health at Mount Royal University in Calgary. He is the Past President of the Canadian Paralympic Committee and past board member for the 2015 Pan Parapan American Games in Toronto. David has also served on the International Paralympic Committee’s Sport Science Committee. In June he was elected President of the International Federation of Adapted Physical Activity. Dr. Legg also worked with the Calgary BidCo for the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Director of Strategy, Calgary Economic Development, Ph.D. Candidate, Curator of Global Shapers Calgary
Jason Ribeiro is a corporate leader, community advocate, and one of Canada’s most awarded social science graduate students. As Director of Strategy at Calgary Economic Development, Jason is responsible for setting and implementing corporate and community vision through the city's new economic strategy, "Calgary in the New Economy." Jason is simultaneously completing his Ph.D. research at the University of Calgary, which is funded by the prestigious SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship and aims to assist organizational leaders in shaping, leading, and sustaining innovation efforts in cross-sector partnerships. He is an active member of the international academic community, and has taught over 600 university students, written 13 scholarly works, delivered over 20 national/international conference presentations, and received over $180,000 in competitive funding.
Jason is committed to improving the lives and well-being of Canadians across the country and has represented Canada at the World Bank/IMF Annual Meetings, United Nations Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial, and Young Leaders Program of Atlantik-Brücke. He was recently elected as Curator of the World Economic Forum Global Shapers Calgary Hub for the 2019-2020 year. A passionate leader, Jason currently sits on boards and standing committees within Sport Calgary, EducationMatters, and the Calgary Public Library. Finally, Jason weighs in regularly on civic, national, and international affairs as a commentator on CBC.
John Francis is a passionate leader known for building high-performing teams with 20 years experience in sales and marketing. He has lead teams in entertainment, hospitality, financial services and sports & recreation industries. Over the past five years John has been focused on leading WinSport’s marketing and communications team working to help guests find what inspires them. In the last year he has taken over the guest services team and is working to develop a guest centered culture that inspires guests at every interaction. John is focused on service-based organizations that have the guest at the centre and work to deliver a shared purpose.
President & CEO, Calgary Economic Development
Chair, Sport Calgary
Mary became President and CEO of Calgary Economic Development in 2015. Mary initially joined Calgary Economic Development as Vice President of Marketing, Communications and Research in 2010. She brought extensive leadership experience in the development of strategy, marketing, stakeholder relations and fund development with leading companies, including TELUS Delta Hotels, Canadian Airlines and Wardair.
At Calgary Economic Development, Mary led teams that created the Calgary Be Part of the Energy promotional brand adopted by all civic agencies, the award-winning 2013 flood recovery campaign YYC is OPEN, and oversaw development of two iterations of the city’s economic strategy, Calgary Building on our Energy and Calgary in the New Economy. Mary is the CEO of the Opportunity Calgary Investment Fund, a board director of the Calgary Film Centre, and was CEO of Calgary 2026 Bid corporation developing and promoting a bid to host the Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Mary earned an MBA from Royal Roads University. She is active in the Calgary community and serves as a director for the Calgary Petroleum Club, O’Brien Institute for Public Health and is the Chair of Sport Calgary. She is a past Chair of Ronald McDonald House Southern Alberta.
Vice President, Development (Architect, AAA, MRAIC)
Kate joined CMLC in January 2013 to lead our Construction & Development division in delivering the master plan vision for East Village and the Rivers District. Currently, she is leading development of the city’s New Central Library, overseeing the project management team while working closely with Calgary Public Library, City of Calgary, project consultants and stakeholders.
A registered member of the Alberta Architects Association (AAA) and active Member of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (MRAIC), Kate manages architectural controls for East Village, ensuring all plans for new development align with CMLC’s vision for the neighbourhood.
Kate is active in the community through her role as Vice Chair of the YWCA Calgary Board of Directors and as a member of the Dean’s Circle of Environmental Design (EVDS) at University of Calgary, where she has been a sessional instructor since 2004.
Investment Advisor, National Bank Financial, NHL, Alumni
Perry has been an Investment Advisor since 1996. In 2003, Perry was proud to spearhead the opening of the first Wellington West Capital Inc. office in Calgary, Alberta. Since then, National Bank acquired Wellington West Inc. in July 2011. Before becoming an advisor, Perry played nine seasons in the NHL for the Calgary Flames (1985-1989), Minnesota North Stars (1989-1991) and the San Jose Sharks (1991-1993). In 1986 he was credited with the infamous “Steve Smith goal” that won the Calgary Flames the series in Game 7 against the Edmonton Oilers. After retirement, Perry returned to school to complete his Business Degree at the University of North Dakota. Perry still stays active in the NHL through colour commentary work on television and radio with the Calgary Flames. He is renowned for his community involvement through his work with the Calgary Flames Alumni and numerous charitable organizations in Southern Alberta. Perry was recently recognized by the Rotary Club of Calgary with the distinguished Integrity Award for his community work and showing the qualities of sound moral principles, honestly and sincerity.
Associate Professor, University of Calgary
Coach Educator, Banff Alpine Racers
Academic leader with a deep commitment to creativity, innovation, ethics, and integrity. Award-winning speaker, thoughtful researcher, and foremost knowledge translator. Process-driven, visionary, translating broad strategic initiatives for students into operational mechanisms that produce successful outcomes. A patient, resilient, and tenacious problem solver; empowers groups and individuals to take an integral role in the betterment of their health and subsequently their workplace. Politically astute educational ambassador and team builder; fosters an environment where individuals can develop a deep sense of meaning. Strategic ability to recruit and guide in selection processes thereby strengthening the academy’s positioning as a global centre of excellence in research, education, and service. Rallies leaders, employees, students, government officials, and all stakeholders toward a better future.
President, Manifesto Sport Management
Russell is the President of Manifesto and a consultant specializing in sport marketing and content production; Olympic, action sports and pro athlete management; and major event bid strategy and fund development. An active member in Canada's sport community, Russell founded a community movement promoting FREE sport discovery for kids in Calgary (All Sport One Day), developed an award-winning program to promote tobacco-free lives to Alberta’s youth (Sport For Life), led successful bids to bring major sport events to Canada, and currently works as the Project Lead for X Games Calgary. Russell has worked successfully with world leaders in sport for the past 18 years – including nine Olympic Games, ten World Championships and over 25 World Cups – as an executive event volunteer, athlete brand and marketing advisor, national sponsorship sales and activation lead, content producer, and major event bid strategist.
Vincent is the Founder and CEO of StellarAlgo, a company focused on fan data analytics through the usage of machine learning technology and their SaaS customer data platform. The Company is based in Calgary, Canada and works with some of North America's largest sports and entertainment brands.
Vince has wide experience in the sports industry having worked as the Senior Vice President of Business Operations for Portland Trail Blazers focusing on organizational strategy, revenue strategy, ticket operations, CRM/consumer insights, business opportunity analysis, innovation and technology, and marketing automation. Prior to his stint at the Trail Blazers, Vince was the Director of Business Operations and Analytics for AEG Sports where he provided analytic support to AEG's North American and European sports properties including the LA Kings and LA Galaxy.