Justice Donald F. McLeod, Chair: Governance & Advancement
Justice McLeod has been an accomplished litigator for over a decade with a keen interest in community and social justice issues. The McLeod Group had a well-known and respected reputation as one of the leading boutique criminal, administrative and human rights firms in Toronto.
Justice McLeod has argued cases such as R v. Golden successfully in the Supreme Court of Canada in 1999 intervening for the African Legal Clinic. In 2009, the case of R v. Douse was a landmark case, which revolutionized the traditionally used racial vetting process to now take into consideration non-conscious racism. In 2005, McLeod argued R v. Hamilton and Mason in the Ontario Court of Appeal.
As confirmation of his good work and various achievements, October 2, 2014, marked a new chapter for Justice McLeod as an appointed judge of the Ontario Court of Justice.
Justice McLeod remains very active in the community, in addition to conducting seminars at various legal conferences and community meetings. Notable seminars included a presentation with Paul Burstein to Federal Crowns office with respect to Gladeau Court and Section 718 CC (sentencing applications); presented with Madame Justice Feldman (Ontario Court of Appeal) at the Provincial Judges Conference in London, Ontario with respect to Sections 8, 9, 10(b) of the Canadian Charter of Rights; and a guest lecturer at Queen’s University Law School in Criminal Advocacy.
Justice McLeod continues to provide legal commentary in high-profile media programs including CBC Newsworld, The Hour, CBC Radio’s Metro Morning, CFRB 1010, CNN, Fox News, CTV Morning as well as TVO’s Studio Two on a variety of topics and community-related issues.
Ainsworth Morgan, Chair: Strong Academy – Education
Ainsworth obtained his BSc. in Criminology from the University of Toledo. Following a successful career as a professional athlete at home and abroad, Ainsworth set his sights toward education and received his B.Ed and M.Ed from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) at the University of Toronto. In doing so, he came full circle and returned to Regent Park as a teacher. Ainsworth has been an educator for 17 years and as a testament to that achievement, he was promoted to Principal in September 2015. For the past 20 years, he served as a mentor and community organizer in the Regent Park community.
Marlon Reid, Chair: Finance
Marlon joined CIBC in 2015 to serve in the capacity of Director- Regulatory Complaints and Designated Complaints Officer (DCO). In this role he, among other things, provides leadership and strategic direction to his team and internal business partners of CIBC to resolve client complaints within a complex and stringent regulatory framework. Prior to this role, Marlon spent time exploring opportunities to raise and lead a FinTech alternative lender start-up.
Marlon Reid previously worked at TD Securities, the wholesale banking arm of TD Bank Group for over 11 years in progressive roles. As Vice President, Global Counterparty Credit – Investment Banking, Marlon led a high performing team of professionals supporting Global Energy Markets, Global Precious Metals, Global Foreign Exchange, Asset Securitization and Commercial Paper businesses. His focus involved negotiation and deal execution of TD’s energy origination transactions in addition to various other over-the-counter derivative and capital market transactions. In this capacity, Marlon developed an industry reputation as a skillful, but “disarming” negotiator. Marlon served as co-chair on the Black Community Subcommittee of TD Bank’s Diversity Leadership council for three years on which he held a seat among a team of TD executives.
Marlon is also a tireless and committed role model and community leader. He served two terms as President of the Canadian Association of Urban Financial Professional (formerly Urban Financial Services Coalition) in 2009 and 2010, and later served as Chair of the organization’s Corporate Advisory Board and Chair of the 2012 International Conference.
Marlon holds an undergraduate business degree from York University, a law degree from the University of Ottawa, and a Master of Finance degree from University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management. He received appointments to the AGO Next Committee of the Art Gallery of Ontario, YMCA Leadership Council for Innovative Education and to the Financial Services Advisory Board to the Rotman School of Management. Marlon currently sits as a Director on the Toronto Public Library Foundation Board, and the 100 Strong Foundation Board on which he serves as Treasurer.
Gavin Douglas, Finance & Governance
Gavin is a financial services professional with over 20 years of experience in the Property Casualty insurance industry. He is known for his relationship management, sales management, negotiation, coaching as well as business development competencies. Gavin is currently a business transformation consultant for one of the largest insurers in the world. He is responsible for creating a business environment that promotes continuous improvement, increases in operating model consistency, reduces customer pain points, and empowers employees to enhance the value of service.
Gavin has served on non-profit boards and foundations in both Canada and the U.S. where the focus has been professional development, community outreach and the development, coaching, and the encouragement of youth within his community.
Ray Williams, Chair: Advancement, Communications & Strategy
Drawing on his achievements within major financial institutions in the London, New York and Toronto markets and in various trading, sales & management capacities, Mr. Williams is currently Managing Director, Risk Management Solutions Group, Government & Institutional for National Bank Financial, one of the top six investment dealers in Canada. In this role, he is responsible for advisory & execution of derivative solutions to a wide range of clients across Canada (with the exception of Quebec). His client base includes large corporations, Financial Institutions, the Federal, Crown and Provincial governments, Mortgage Institutions and Asset Managers.
From 2000 to 2006, Mr. Williams was an advisor to the federal government as part of an external advisory group on Embracing Change, a program designed to reconcile the evident disparities of visible minorities within the federal public service and federally-regulated industries, advising specifically though not exclusively, the President of the Public Service Commission (PSC), the President of the Public Service Human Resource Management Canada (PSHRMAC), and the Clerk of the Privy Council (at the time Alex Himmelfarb).
He is an outspoken champion of workplace diversity and is a Past President (2000) and continuing member of the local chapter of the Urban Financial Services Coalitions (UFSC), the pre-eminent professional trade organization for minorities in the financial services industry. He has been actively involved in the local chapter of UFSC since its inception in 1997 at all levels, and in that capacity acts as a mentor to a number of individuals. Additionally, Mr. Williams was an Advisory Board Member to UFSC for 3 years.
A firm believer in inspiring change within his community, Mr. Williams volunteers in various capacities as a mentor and has sat on the Board of numerous organizations, including the Canadian Foundation for Aids Research (CANFAR 2007-2012). Mr. Williams was also Co-Chair of CANFAR’s Investment Committee and is an ongoing Advisory Board Member. He was also member of the Investment Committee of the United Way of Greater Toronto (2008 -2013).
Mide Akerewusi, Advancement
Mide uses the breadth of his international perspective, academic credentials, fundraising expertise and experience in social change to help nonprofits develop formulas for exponential revenue growth. He is an inspired and energetic fundraising specialist with a uniquely diverse perspective. He has successfully led fundraising teams in a variety of the UK’s best known social impact charities, including the British Red Cross, The Children’s Society, and Scope. His Canadian journey began in 2008 when the YMCA of Greater Toronto sought him to be their Chief Development Officer.
Mide’s inspiration to establish AGENTSC, a fundraising company specializing in social impact, came after he served nearly five years as Director of Leadership Philanthropy at Canada’s pioneering and award winning social innovation – Pathways to Education. At Pathways, Mide led the leadership philanthropy strategy for the charity’s successful $185 million Graduation Nation campaign, which saw the rapid expansion of the program across Canada. Mide was personally responsible for raising more than $20 million from high-net- worth individuals and corporations, and was a member of the leadership team that brought in an additional $60 million towards the charity’s campaign to help children graduate and transition to post-secondary education.
Mide graduated with a B.SC.(Hons) in Business Studies and Sociology from the University of Surrey. He also possesses an M.Sc.(Econ) in The Politics of Asia and Africa, from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London – UK. He is a Certified Corporate Social Responsibility Practitioner (CSR-P), has a designation as a Dialogue Education Practitioner (CDEP), and is a visiting lecturer at George Brown College for the department of Business and Legal Studies.
Andrew Bromfield, Education & Communications
Andrew Bromfield has one main professional goal: to help organizations and people grow through the alignment of information technology and business strategy. This commitment has been the inspiration behind the founding of Formative Innovations Inc.
The Toronto based creative and technology firm specializes in the design, development, and management of technology solutions that power business and workforce competitiveness.
As Formative’s President, Andrew’s primary responsibilities include the creation and management of strategic initiatives and the realization of the company’s long-term vision.
As Formative’s Chief Technology Officer, Andrew also plays a key role in the creative development of all product and service offerings.
Prior to founding Formative Innovations Inc.,Andrew played key roles at DoubleClick and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC).
Andrew has a Bachelor of Commerce,Information Technology Management degree from Ryerson University.
Andrew’s commitment to community includes a director role on the following boards:
Driven Accelerator and 100 Strong Foundation. Andrew is a past board member of
The African and Caribbean Board of Industry & Trade and The Francophone Workforce Development Council.
Charmain Emerson, Communications
Charmain has more than 20 years of experience in the communications industry which includes time spent as a broadcaster with Rogers Media, Global Television, and the CBC.
Following a broadcast career, Charmain segued into corporate communications. She has worked in provincial government as legislative/communications advisor to Ontario government ministers and later founded her own public relations agency—Building Blocks Communications.
Her agency experience transferred over to client side as VP, Communications and Marketing for the iconic UK fashion brand French Connection.
Charmain currently enjoys time consulting and serving as a director on the boards of: the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI), Factory Theatre, OCAD University’s Onsite Gallery, and Board Advisor for Hot Docs (Canadian International Documentary Festival).
Charmain holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from McMaster University.
Eleanor MacIntosh, Education
Eleanor MacIntosh has been a driving force in the field of education for over 15 years. She began her career in education as an Assistant Language Teacher (A.L.T.) with the Japan Exchange and Teaching (J.E.T.) Program in Kani City, Japan.
After several years in Canadian classrooms, Eleanor transferred her experience into management where she spent nine years as a secondary school Vice Principal.
Eleanor is a founding member of the Durham Black Educators’ Network (DBEN); a community role she has enjoyed since its inception in 2004.
Eleanor holds a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and Administration from Niagara University.
Dr. Ato Sekyi-Otu, Education
Dr. Ato Sekyi-Otu has been practising orthopaedic surgery at Willaim Osler Health System since 1998 and currently the Division Head of orthopaedics at the Brampton Civic Site. He is also currently a Lecturer in the Department of Surgery at University of Toronto and a mentor in the Diversity Mentorship Program in the Faculty of Medicine at University of Toronto.
Sudz Sutherland, Education
Sudz Sutherland (Writer/Director) works on both sides of the fence as a freelance writer and director for TV dramas and feature films. Sudz’s latest feature film, Home Again, won the prestigious PAFF/BAFTA Festival Choice Award in Los Angeles and was recently nominated for Best Direction from the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC). Home Again was the follow up to his multiple award winning and Genie nominated debut feature film Love, Sex and Eating the Bones, which won the best first feature at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).
Sudz is developing two new feature films, Operation Red Dog and Duppy. His latest project ‘Shoot the Messenger,’ is his first Dramatic series and co-created with writer/producer Jennifer Holness; the series aired in the US on WGN and in Canada on CBC.
Sudz was granted a Canadian Screen Award for Best Direction for the TV movie, The Phantoms, which also ngarnered a nomination for Best Direction from the Director’s Guild of Canada.
Sudz is the writer/director of the triple Gemini award-winning series, Doomstown (re: Best Direction, Best Supporting Actress, Best Television Movie).
Donna Walwyn, Governance
Donna Walwyn is a multidisciplinary professional focused on maximizing global opportunities, with a professional history of governance, regulatory compliance and risk assessment.
Donna is committed to giving back to the community. She is a past president of the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers, a former chair of the Governance Committee of the Black Business & Professional Association, and is a co-founder of Black Opportunity Fund where she also serves as a director on the board, and the chair of the Grants Committee.