WaterPower Canada is privileged and honoured to welcome many distinguished speakers to Canadian Waterpower Week 2021.
Please get to know some of our confirmed speakers by browsing below, and make sure to subscribe to our mailing list to receive program updates and special announcements!
President & CEO, WaterPower Canada
Anne-Raphaëlle Audouin has been working in the natural resources sector for over a decade. In her current role as President and CEO of WaterPower Canada she represents and is the national spokesperson for the largest electricity sector in Canada, one that generates billions of dollars for the Canadian economy every year and employs more than a 130,000 people across the country.
A tireless champion for sustainable development, her career has been focused on advancing technologies and industries that help better Canada’s environmental profile. She works with stakeholders at the political and policy levels, is regularly quoted in national media and sits on several Boards of Directors.
In 2019, Anne-Raphaëlle was appointed by the Canadian federal government to serve on the North American Commission for Environmental Cooperation (Joint Public Advisory Committee), a trilateral organization comprised of Canada, the U.S.A. and Mexico, with the mission to promote continental cooperation in ecosystem protection and sustainable economic development, and to ensure active public participation and transparency in the actions of the Commission. She is also a co-founder of the Canadian Council on Renewable Electricity (CanCORE).
Senior Vice President, WaterPower Canada
Patrick D. Bateman is a clean and renewable energy professional who has spent his career working in policy and market development leadership roles in Canada’s electricity industry.
As the Senior Vice President at WaterPower Canada, Patrick leads and shapes the association’s involvement in federal legislative, regulatory, and policy initiatives including on topics such as climate change policy, environmental assessment, and fisheries, wildlife and habitat stewardship.
Patrick holds a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Biology from University College Dublin’s School of Biology and Environmental Science (Ireland), and a Master’s degree in Renewable Energy from the University of Reading’s School of Construction Management and Engineering (England).
Patrick’s vision for Canada in 2050 is: 100% emissions-free electricity; electricity as our single largest energy source; and hydroelectricity as the flexible and dependable backbone of the reliable and resilient electricity supply-mix.
Anchor, BNN Bloomberg
Award-winning business journalist Amanda Lang has been covering business in North America for 25 years. Lang is the host of Bloomberg Markets for BNN Bloomberg, a global program airing daily from Toronto and New York. She is also host of the weekly radio program and podcast, Exponential with Amanda Lang. Previously, Lang was CBC’s senior business correspondent, reporting for its flagship nightly news program, The National, and host of The Exchange with Amanda Lang, a daily business program airing on CBC News Network. For five years before that Lang hosted The Lang and O’Leary Exchange, with Kevin O’Leary. And prior to that the pair co-hosted SqueezePlay, on BNN, for 6 years.
Lang studied Architecture at the University of Manitoba, before becoming a journalist. Her first job in journalism was for the Globe and Mail, and subsequently Lang joined the Financial Post newspaper, where she became the paper’s New York correspondent. In New York she made the leap to television, where she first was part of the team that launched BNN and before long wound up at CNN as a reporter and anchor.
Lang is a senior fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy. Lang is chair of the board of directors of Covenant House Toronto, the largest agency in Canada serving homeless and at risk youth. Lang is a member of the board of Canada’s Walk of Fame, which celebrates Canadian achievement. Lang is also a best-selling author. “The Power of Why,” (HarperCollins, October 2012) explores the connection between curiosity and success. “The Beauty of Discomfort” (HarperCollins, April 2017) examines how difficult change can be, and set out strategies for how to achieve it.
EVP Production and Industrial Ownership, Statkraft
Hilde Bakken is EVP Production and Industrial Ownership at Statkraft, Europe’s largest renewable energy producer. Bakken has been with Statkraft since 2000. Before assuming the position as EVP Production in 2013, Bakken was Chief of Staff. She has long experience in the business areas Production and Markets and has held several management positions in this field. Before she came to Statkraft she held several manager positions in industrial company Norsk Hydro. Bakken holds a MSc in Petroleum Engineering from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).
Director for Innovation and Technology, IRENA
Dolf Gielen is IRENA Director for Innovation and Technology since 2011. He has more than 25 years of experience with energy transition strategy development and implementation as well as technology policy in an international context. He has a PhD from Delft University of Technology in Delft in the Netherlands.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Hydro-Québec
Sophie Brochu took office as President and Chief Executive Officer of Hydro‑Québec in April 2020. She is the first woman in the company’s history to hold that office on a permanent basis. Ms. Brochu has over 30 years of experience in the energy sector. She helped develop Québec’s natural gas network and supports the growth of renewable energy sources such as hydropower, wind and solar, in both Canada and the U.S. Very active in the community, she is involved with Centraide of Greater Montreal and co-founded ruelle de l’avenir. She also chairs the board of Fondation Forces AVENIR and is a leader of L’effet A, an initiative whose aim is to promote the participation of women at all organizational levels. Ms. Brochu was awarded honorary doctorates by Université de Montréal (HEC Montréal) and Bishop’s University. She is a member of the Order of Canada and an officer of the Ordre national du Québec.
CEO, Drax Group
Drax Group CEO Will Gardiner is redefining the company’s future – building on its proud history with exciting ambitions for the business to be the cornerstone of a zero-carbon economy. Following an international career spanning the US, UK & Latin America, including Executive positions at JP Morgan, Easynet and CSR, Will joined Drax in 2015 as CFO, as it was completing the final stages of the largest decarbonisation project in Europe, following the conversion of the power station from coal to sustainable biomass.
Will is now leading Drax on another journey of transformation. Appointed as CEO in 2018, Will’s vision for Drax is firmly focussed on enabling a zero carbon, lower cost energy future, and spearheading the company’s world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030. Under his leadership, Drax is developing pumped storage hydropower projects, and pioneering the development of Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS), putting Drax and the UK at the forefront of negative emissions technology to fight climate change.
President and CEO , BC Hydro
Chris O’Riley is BC Hydro’s President and CEO. Chris leads B.C.’s largest Crown corporation, the fourth largest company in the province as ranked by annual revenue. With a clean energy advantage thanks to a long history of hydroelectric generation, BC Hydro delivers 98% renewable and clean electricity to its four million customers. To ensure a reliable supply of this critical product, BC Hydro will spend approximately $2 billion per year over the next 10 years to refurbish and expand its electricity assets. With construction of the Site C Project currently underway, Chris continues to seek opportunities to support clean development in B.C., such as through low carbon electrification. Chris built his career at BC Hydro, starting as an engineer-in-training fresh out of university in 1990. During his 29-year career, Chris has held positions throughout the organization and across the province, including roles working with customers, leading operations, overseeing capital projects, and working at BC Hydro’s trading subsidiary. He has been a member of BC Hydro’s Executive Team since 2007, and was appointed Deputy Chief Executive Officer in 2015.
Assistant Deputy Minister, Low Carbon Energy Sector, Natural Resources Canada
As Assistant Deputy Minister of the Low Carbon Energy Sector (LCES) at Natural Resource Canada, Mollie Johnson oversees the Government of Canada’s bridge to the future low-carbon economy. From its inception in October 2019 to now, Mollie and her team have worked at the vanguard of Canada’s efforts to advance national energy priorities in the global energy transition.
Mollie and her LCES team provides strategic advice on domestic and international energy matters, including energy efficiency and low-carbon power programs to help mitigate climate change, advancing the competitiveness of Canada’s energy sector, and promoting access to reliable, clean and affordable energy Canadians all while supporting broad and meaningful Indigenous participation.
During an unprecedented year, Mollie’s 450-member team has driven Canada’s transformation towards a net-zero future. From delivering key federal strategies like the 2020 Hydrogen Strategy for Canada and the National Action Plan for Small Modular Reactors to renewables, home retrofits and clean fuels programming. Mollie was previously Assistant Deputy Minister, Communications and Portfolio Sector; and, Director General, Policy, Major Projects Management Office, both at Natural Resources Canada. She has also held executive positions at Environment and Climate Change Canada; the Competition Bureau; and was a senior officer in Legislation and House Planning at the Privy Council Office.
Assistant Deputy Minister, Environment and Climate Change Canada
John is ADM of the Environmental Protection Branch at Environment and Climate Change Canada. He oversees the Department’s law reform work and numerous regulatory initiatives, including on carbon pricing and the forthcoming clean fuel standard. Prior to joining government in 2006, he consulted to NGO, corporate and government clients in Canada and in developing countries, was Executive Assistant to the Attorney General of Ontario from 1998 to 2000, and was a lawyer in Toronto.
President and CEO , Electricity Human Resources Canada
Michelle Branigan is the Chief Executive Officer of Electricity Human Resources Canada (EHRC). Branigan is a subject matter expert when it comes to the industry and works closely with employers and industry stakeholders to address their specific labour market and HR challenges. Originally from Ireland, Branigan holds a master’s degree in Training and Performance Management from the University of Leicester, U.K., and is a certified Project Management Professional.
Understanding the impacts of innovation and technology, Branigan is committed to developing forward thinking and cutting-edge tools, resources, and research to meet current and future workforce needs. As a champion of diversity and inclusion, she is passionate about leading real change for the advancement of women and minorities and has spearheaded many instrumental programs which have sparked a national movement for organization to become agents of change. Among these initiatives is the leadership Accord for Diversity Equity and Inlcusion- a public commitment by employers, educators, unions, and governments to build a workforce that is truly representative of Canada’s people.
She is currently an active Board Member with the Energy Council of Canada, the Irish Film Festival Ottawa, and a recipient of Women in Renewable Energy’s (WiRE) 2015 Woman of the Year award, which recognizes and celebrates professional women working in the energy sector who go above and beyond business as usual.
President and CEO , Standards Council of Canada
Chantal Guay, ing. P.Eng., FCAE, is the CEO of the Standards Council of Canada, where she oversees the promotion of standards and accreditation in Canada and abroad. Chantal is the first woman to both lead SCC and represent Canada on the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Council. She also holds many leadership positions in the international standardization community. Prior to SCC, Chantal was CEO of Engineers Canada, where she led the engineering profession’s adoption of the 30 by 30 strategy, which aims to raise the percentage of newly licenced engineers who are women to 30 per cent by the year 2030. Chantal was honoured with a fellowship from the Canadian Academy of Engineering in recognition for this work. Chantal is also actively involved in her community and sits on the Board of the Ottawa Youville Center. She is Vice-Chair of the Council of Canadian Academies and has been mentoring young engineers throughout her career.
President and CEO , Women in Renewable Energy
Joanna Osawe is the President & CEO of WiRE Women in Renewable Energy. Joanna attended Western University studying Languages, graduating with an Honours BA. Joanna works at ABB in the position of Business Development Manager, End Users & EPCs. Joanna has used her language skills on a focused, 15+ year management career at leading renewable and energy sector companies in Canada and the United States. By carrying complex projects through many stages she has seen firsthand the vital role renewable energy and emerging technologies serve in moving the Canadian, American and global energy mix forward.
Recently, Joanna Osawe, has been appointed to the Federal Sustainable Development Advisory Council, led by Minister Jonathan Wilkinson of Environment and Climate Change. She looks forward to engaging and contributing to the Council’s success. The Council is made up of the Canadian public that represent the views of different provinces and territories, Indigenous peoples, as well as environmental non-governmental organizations and business and labour organizations.
Senior Vice President, Renewable Generation and Power Marketing , OPG
Nicolle Butcher is the Senior Vice President, Renewable Generation and Power Marketing at Ontario Power Generation (OPG). She is accountable for the operation of 10 000 MW of hydroelectric and thermal generation in Ontario, as well as overseeing the management of Eagle Creek Renewable Energy, OPG’s US hydro subsidiary and Atura Power, OPG’s fleet of combined cycle gas plants. Nicolle is also accountable for commercial business functions including energy trading, commercial contracting, and market affairs at OPG. Prior to this role, Nicolle was accountable for OPG’s Corporate Business Development and Strategy team focused on implementing OPG’s long-term strategic plan, including executing on $5B of acquisitions, building an electrification strategy and driving an innovation culture at OPG. In her 20 years with OPG, Nicolle held a wide range of roles in OPG, including heading up Canadian Nuclear Partners (now Laurentis), leading a corporate-wide business transformation anddeveloping the Portlands Energy Centre in Toronto. Nicolle is the current Board Chair at Eagle Creek Renewable Energy and Atura Power. She also sits on the Board of Directors of WaterPower Canada and the MaRS-Advanced Energy Centre Advisory Board of Directors. Nicolle holds an MBA from McGill University, is a Chartered Business Valuator and has earned an ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors.
Director, Integrated Resource Planning, Manitoba Hydro
Terry Miles has been working in the hydroelectric utility industry for over 28 years, holding various technical and leadership positions at Manitoba Hydro during this time in the areas of hydraulic operations, energy operations planning, resource planning, water resource engineering and environmental monitoring and licensing. In his current role of Director – Integrated Resource Planning, he leads a team of engineers and technical specialists and oversees the integrated planning function for generation, transmission, and distribution as well as natural gas distribution infrastructure. This encompasses energy supply planning, grid infrastructure planning, load forecasting, and water resource engineering including the climate change and energy policy portfolios. Terry holds a Civil Engineering degree as well as a Master of Science degree in Engineering from the University of Manitoba.
Chief Innovation Officer and Executive Vice President, Hydro-Québec
After having served as Chief Operating Officer of Hydro-Québec and President of Hydro-Québec Production from 2018 to 2020, and as Chief Innovation Officer of Hydro-Québec and President of Hydro-Québec Production from 2020 to 2021, David Murray became Chief Innovation Officer and Executive Vice President – Generation, Health, Safety and Environment in February 2021, when Hydro-Québec transformed its operating divisions into groups. As Chief Innovation Officer, he is tasked with developing an overall innovation vision and strategy to develop the full potential of the company’s technologies for the benefit of Québec’s energy future. He also spearheads the company’s R&D efforts and the activities of its commercial subsidiaries, including Hilo, EVLO, Dana TM4 and the Electric Circuit. As Executive Vice President – Generation, Health, Safety and Environment, he manages the operations, development and maintenance of the company’s generating facilities, whose total installed capacity exceeds 37,000 megawatts, as well as electricity sales and energy trading on wholesale markets. He also oversees occupational health and safety, as well as environmental governance and expertise. Mr. Murray joined Hydro-Québec in 2015 as Vice President – Information and Communications Technologies and was promoted President of Hydro-Québec Distribution in 2016. Previously, he held a number of strategic management positions at Bombardier Aéronautique, where he contributed to the launch of Bombardier Avions d’affaires and served as Vice President and General Manager responsible for the Learjet 70/75 programs and the Learjet plant in Wichita, Kansas. He also worked for Flextronics, Nortel Networks and Rolls Royce. David Murray holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from HEC Montréal. He is a governor of the Mouvement québécois de la qualité, co-chair of the Canadian Red Cross Campaign – Emergency Support When You Need It currently under way in Québec and a member of the board of Centraide du Grand Montréal.
President & CEO, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business
Tabatha is Anishinaabe and a proud member of Nipissing First Nation near North Bay, Ontario. She is currently the President & CEO of Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business working with Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal businesses to help strengthen a prosperous Indigenous economy and Canadian market. Also, a member of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce board, Tabatha is committed to working with members to improve business competitiveness across all industry sectors. Prior to her current role as CEO, Tabatha joined CCAB in the fall of 2018 as Chief Operating Officer.
Tabatha, an electrical engineer from the University of Waterloo, led the First Nations and Métis Relations team at the IESO, Ontario’s electricity system operator. Supporting and advising Canada’s energy sector, academics and organizations to ensure a collaborative approach with Indigenous leaders, communities, heads of industry and government, Tabatha sits as a member on both the Positive Energy Advisory Council and the C.D. Howe Institute’s Energy Policy program.
As a testament to her passion to better the lives of Indigenous people and stay connected to her community, Tabatha serves as a director on the board of Wigwamen Housing Inc.; the oldest and largest urban Indigenous housing provider in Ontario.
Tabatha is also an active member on the board of Young Peoples Theatre in Toronto and the Canadian advisory group to UN Women “promoting women’s economic empowerment through responsible business in G7 countries”.
Senior Editor, The Globe and Mail
Ryan MacDonald is a senior editor at The Globe and Mail heading the climate, environment and resources team. He has held editorial positions at the Globe since 2007, including head of programming and political editor. Previously, he was the national editor at the Ottawa Citizen.
Senior Engineer, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Greg Brinkman is an expert in power systems modeling and renewables integration with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. He studies the impacts of variable renewable generation on the electric power system, primarily focused on high-renewable scenarios and the enabling technologies and operational practices that allow for efficient integration of variable renewables. He has a Ph.D. from the University of Colorado and recently completed the North American Renewable Integration Study (NARIS).
Assistant Professor, University of Victoria
Dr. Madeleine McPherson is an Assistant Professor in the department of Civil Engineering at the University of Victoria and the principal investigator of the Sustainable Energy Systems Integration & Transitions (SESIT) Group. McPherson and her team is developing an integrated modelling framework to explore electrification and energy systems integration for system-wide deep decarbonization. Dr. McPherson serves as an Executive Member on the Energy Modelling Initiative, which is convening a national dialog between modelers and stakeholders around decarbonizing Canada’s energy system.