Board of Directors
Cathleen Edwards is the Education Manager for Family Councils Ontario, a non-profit organization that leads and supports families in improving the quality of life in long-term care. In her role, she develops, designs and disseminates educational materials. Managing FCO research projects, initiatives and surveys also falls under her current portfolio. She holds an Honours Bachelor of Human Kinetics from the University of Windsor (2006) and a Master of Arts in Health and Physical Education from Brock University(2009). Prior to her role at FCO, she served as the Project Coordinator at Abilities Centre for a Pan-Canadian program called EmploymentWorks a pre-employment program for Youth with Autism. Her passion to support individuals with physical and developmental disabilities continued to grow through her role as the Program Coordinator for Meticulon Assessment Services at Abilities Centre. More recently, she was a Research Associate affiliated with AGE-WELL based out of the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute and a Professor in the Activation Coordination in Gerontology Program at Durham College.
Inji Mekhemer is an accomplished Chartered Accountant and insightful finance professional with extensive international experience in compiling and analyzing business intelligence to help companies across various industries plan and make strategic decisions. She acquired a cross-functional accounting experience in Sales, Marketing, Operations, and Financial Services allowing her to support business owners and investors in her current position at RBC Royal Bank.
Her solid experience in corporate strategic planning leads the analytical efforts to support complex business transformation. The rich portfolio of success in both Corporate Finance and Business Development is complemented by an MBA with a specialty in Strategic Planning from Edinburgh Business School, Heriot-Watt University – Edinburgh, Scotland.
Currently semi-retired, Ann Dean brings to TWIG more than 30 years of post-secondary experience in the Ontario college sector. In her career, she progressed through a variety of academic and administrative positions relating to research, curriculum and program development culminating in the role of Dean of Program Planning, Development and Renewal for Humber College ITAL. Over the years, Ann worked on many institutional and provincial initiatives, projects and committees with government policy makers as well as stakeholders and representatives from a wide range of sectors. Her work was greatly informed by the dynamic intersection between post-secondary education and the labour market.
Salman Khan graduated with a degree in Computer Science from York University in 2009 and began his career as an Analyst at IBM where he supported Fortune 500 companies using IBM’s e-commerce platform. After completing his MBA in Technology and Innovation from the Ted Rogers School of Management, Salman joined the investment attraction team at Toronto Global in 2017 as a Senior Advisor. Toronto Global is a not-for-profit investment attraction agency that supports the expansion of foreign-owned businesses to the Toronto Region. Salman works in collaboration with the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service, Ontario Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade, municipal partners and local stakeholders to offer complimentary and customized services to growing international companies. Salman is passionate about the impact of emerging technologies and how they can make Toronto Region a great destination for international businesses.
Jo-Anne is a communications and marketing professional with more than two decades of experience delivering high-quality communications services. She began her career in the publishing industry working on consumer and trade publications, later moving to the financial services sector and finally the not-for-profit sector. In 2010, she launched her own consultancy where she has developed and executed communications and marketing initiatives for a range of corporate clients, including Cadillac Fairview, PricewaterhouseCoopers and MPS Interactive (formerly TATA), and not-for-profit organizations such as VHA Home HealthCare, various community health centres, and the Travel Health Insurance Association. She is an active volunteer and has sat on the boards of various charities and non-for-profits.
David has had a long and diverse career in the financial services sector in Toronto and has held roles in Finance, Corporate Communications, Operational Risk Management, Technology Risk Management and Information Security as well as serving as a special assistant to two Global CIOs at a major Canadian bank. Currently David is at Deloitte Canada where he leads a global team responsible for IT Financial Management for the Canadian member firm.
David lives in downtown Toronto and you will often find him in a gallery, at a French language event or being active along the lakeshore.
Interim Executive Director
John has a long and distinguished career in labour market dynamics, education and training both in Canada and internationally. He conceived of, developed and was the founding Executive Director of the Preparatory Training Programs (PTP) from its inception in 1990 through 2003. This was followed by six years of senior advisory roles in vocational education and training in South East Asia. Since returning to Canada, John has had extensive experience in developing innovative workforce programs and translating them into actual on-the-ground strategies. In 2009 John authored the ground-breaking Menial No More, one of the first papers to talk about accelerated technology and its impact on occupations in retail and hospitality. In 2014 he wrote 95 Months Later which sparked an important dialogue about the earning trajectories related to education. In 2011, John acted as principal designer of the Elevate, a program which trains individuals for entry level occupations in the food and beverage industry which has now been replaced in several jurisdictions. In 2017, he supported the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities in the design and launch of the Skill Advance Pilots across the province. Most recently, John recently co-authored the recent Metcalf Foundation paper, When Training Works: Promising Workforce Development Practices.
In 2012, John was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for his work and commitment to the cause of adult education and training.
Senior Manager of Research
Mahjabeen Mamoon is an economist by training with experience in socio-economic research and teaching. Her extensive academic background in Economic Development and Policy Analysis and research experience in Development Economics, the Canadian labour market and other social issues allows her to provide clearly thought out recommendations to senior management. She has a proven track record of using data from a diverse business and functional areas through insightful ways to aid informed action. Mahjabeen has been involved in the workforce development policy and programs since 2016 and has the capacity to engage stakeholders to develop innovative solutions to complex issues facing the Canadian labour market. Working at TWIG, she has had the opportunity to cultivate strong connections with different levels of government, unions, employment service providers, educational and training institutions. She has an international experience working as a lecturer in economics, teaching undergraduate level Applied Mathematics and Development Economics courses. Her research works have appeared in the International Journal of Economics and Finance and the World Review of Business Research.
Communications and Technology Coordinator
Megha is a senior analyst with a diverse background in business analytics, development, visual art, and communications. She brings a keen eye and unique perspective to data analysis, problem-solving and storytelling built on years of experience analyzing complex data sets, identifying trends, and working with C-suite executives to identify opportunities to drive growth.
She has a background in Psychology & Economics, a Master’s in Fashion Marketing & Merchandising, a degree in Industrial Techniques & Design and over 10 years’ experience in analytics where she honed her skills in creative thinking, design, and storytelling. These skills translate strongly to communications where she has successfully translated complex data into clear and actionable insights.
Throughout her tenure working in a national retailer, she was awarded multiple performance awards for exceeding financial targets, and for creating blog posts that were the most read post on vendor platforms, driving engagement.
Dubbed the “Official Statistician of the Creative Class”, Kevin combines expertise on cities, inclusion, urbanization, statistics, design, and economic development with an appreciation of the importance of finding and sharing the knowledge or “pearls of wisdom” gained from leveraging his research, writing, management and organizational skills. The author of over 100 peer-reviewed articles and commissioned reports, he has presented over 75 invited key-note speeches and presentations and over 100 print, radio, television, and on-line media interviews and appearances. He holds a PhD in Business Administration (Information Systems) and an MBA from Carnegie Mellon, a Masters in Higher Education Leadership, and a BS in Honors in Applied Computer Science. Kevin provided quantitative research and analytical support for Richard Florida’s books including The Rise of the Creative Class and Rise Revisited. He continues in collaboration with other researchers in the development of measures, indicators, and approaches for Creative Economy theory with a focus on the economic and social value of inclusion.
Marina is an experienced Chartered Professional Accountant. She brings her accounting and controllership, charity and non-profit expertise to TWIG and used it to fully update the organization to a modern cloud accounting platform. Marina’s other passions, besides accounting, are triathlon and marathon running.