Who's Coming to the Buy Social Canada Summit

Read about featured speakers, panelists and participants attending the upcoming Summit


The honourable carla qualtrough
Minister of Public Services and Procurement canada

A successful lawyer, dedicated volunteer, and Paralympic swimmer, Carla Qualtrough’s commitment to addressing inequality and championing diversity makes her a strong advocate for Delta.

Committed to equity and inclusion, Carla has practised human rights law at the federal and provincial levels. She chaired the Minister’s Council on Employment and Accessibility in British Columbia, and was an adjudicator with the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Tribunal. Carla has been visually impaired since birth.

Passionate about the power of sport and physical activity to change lives, Carla has volunteered locally, nationally, and internationally, including with the International Paralympic Committee and for the Toronto 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games. She has been President of the Canadian Paralympic Committee and Chair of the Sport Dispute Resolution Centre of Canada. Carla was on the Board of the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport, and was Vice-Chair of the Delta Gymnastics Society. As an athlete, Carla won three Paralympic and four World Championship medals.

Carla has degrees in political science from the University of Ottawa and law from the University of Victoria. Among many awards for her work, she has been named one of Canada’s Most Influential Women in Sport six times, and received a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.


steven mackinnon

Parliamentary Secretary
Public Services and Procurement Canada

Member of Parliament, Gatineau

Prior to his election to Parliament, Steven was senior vice president at a global consultancy, where he was a practice director for mergers, acquisitions and financial communications. He has been involved in national and international transactions worth hundreds of billions of dollars. Bloomberg recognized his practice as Canada’s leading mergers & acquisition advisory, which was also a recipient of the Canada-China Business Council’s Gold Award.

Steven is an experienced figure in the Liberal Party of Canada, which he served as national director from 2003 to 2006, serving also as an advisor to former Prime Minister Paul Martin. In 2009, he was Co-chair of the party’s Reform Committee, and he was the national returning officer for the Liberal leadership contest in 2013. He also served as an advisor to New Brunswick Premier Frank McKenna from 1988 to 1995. Over the course of his career, Steven has participated in constitutional negotiations, the negotiation of trade agreements, collective agreements, and major health, education, and election reforms.

In January 2017, Steven was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Services and Procurement by the Prime Minister. He is Vice Chair of the Canada-United States Inter-Parliamentary Group and Counsellor on the Canadian NATO Parliamentary Association (NATO PA). He is also a member of the Canadian Branch of the Assemblée parlementaire de la Francophonie (APF).


anne-marie saulnier

Directrice de l’ECPAR, un réseau canadien de leaders dédiés à l’achat responsable depuis 2008. 

"Augmenter la part des achats publics et privés auprès du secteur économie sociale, c’est possible et ça contribue au développement durable."


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Wes REgan

Community Economic Development Planner, City of Vancouver

Wes Regan has worked in Community Economic Development since 2009 in a range of non-profit, private sector and government roles. He is the City of Vancouver's first Community Economic Development Planner, currently leading poverty reduction and CED initiatives city-wide.

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larry berglund

Presentations Plus Training & Consulting and Author of Good Planets are Hard to Buy

"Social procurement is a conscious strategy to contribute to the social and economic development in a community."



jessica breen

Construction Manager - Design & Construction, Parq Vancouver

Jessica Breen has worked in the construction industry for over 12 years, both as a general contractor and most recently as developer.

She developed the protocol and worked to not only meet but exceed the CBA procurement requirements for Parq Vancouver.

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lynda rankin

Manager of Sustainable Procurement
Department of Internal Services, Procurement
Government of Nova Scotia

Lynda Rankin is a passionate environmental specialist and practical problem solver who believes how and what we choose to consume can be a force for good.

Trained as an agriculture biologist, she has a unique background as strategist and advisor on environmental protection and sustainability issues in the public, private and non-profit sectors.

In her current role with the Government of Nova Scotia she leads the implementation of the Sustainable Procurement Policy for the Government of Nova Scotia.  She works with procurement managers and specialists across government and MASH to develop sustainable procurement guidance, standards, specifications and criteria for a wide range of purchases.




darcy penner

Social Enterprise Policy Manager for the Canadian CED Network Manitoba

Darcy Penner is the Social Enterprise Policy Manager for the Canadian CED Network Manitoba, advocating and advising social procurement in Manitoba, and resourcing a social purchasing intermediary through the Manitoba Social Enterprise Strategy."

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marcia nozick

Founder and CEO, EMBERS
Eastside Movement for Business and Economic Renewal Society

"Social Procurement opens a pathway for social enterprises to employ people with barriers to employment, thus building hope and self-sufficiency for low income individuals and their communities.


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Jeff Waters

Business Development Coordinator, EllisDon Corporation

"Social procurement is looking for the innovative solution and leveraging it to create sustainable local employment and business opportunities in the communities we do business in."



Dr. Tessa Hebb

Distinguished Research Fellow, Carleton Centre for Community Innovation

Dr. Hebb is a Distinguished Research Fellow with the Carleton Centre for Community Innovation, Carleton University, Canada.  Her research focuses on Responsible Investment and Impact Investing. The Carleton Centre for Community Innovation is a leading knowledge producer on these topics together with non-profit and philanthropic leadership, northern communities and community economic development.