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Meet the Judges

A panel of professionals from the fields of economic development, marketing, advertising, and tourism judge the entries in the Promotional and Collaboration & Partnership categories. A separate panel of EDCO past presidents will judge the submissions in the Planning & Building Initiatives category. All judges will refrain from evaluating any submission that may represent a conflict of interest. 

 Angela Gravelle 

 Executive Director, Ontario Municipal Leadership Institute (OMLI)

Angela has over 30 years + public and private sector engagement, complimented by direct municipal economic development, marketing, communications and project management. Angela is enterprising, a motivator of change and a passionate community builder. She enjoys seeking out and capitalizing on innovative best practices as well as emerging opportunities that forge new private-public sector partnerships. She provides networking and shared learning opportunities that propel organizations forward and has an expansive network of business and government relations. She continues to be active with several professional and municipal associations and organizations across North America.  

 Carl Knipfel, RPP, OAA, MRAIC

 Principal, lankinhouse design

Carl is a professional architect and city planner who has enjoyed a stimulating and varied career focused on urban design, economic development, marketing and communications. Following graduation from the University of Toronto, Carl worked on the design for Commerce Court and Canada's External Affairs Headquarters before developing planning policy for the Provincial government.

As Director of Urban Design for the former City of Scarborough, he initiated the first Ontario municipal urban design awards and developed development guidelines and Official Plan policies. As Scarborough Director of Marketing he managed business communications and developed a wide range of marketing materials.

He worked as a policy advisor to the Toronto Transition Team developing the delivery mechanism for economic development services in the new City of Toronto.  While Manager of Business Marketing and Brand Manager for the amalgamated City of Toronto, Carl's marketing initiatives were recognized by numerous marketing awards and the President's Award from both EDCO and EDAC. He concurrently served as a member of the Greater Toronto Marketing Alliance.

Carl was subsequently appointed Manager of Design Research for OCAD University where he promoted business partnerships and collaborated on innovative research projects. He is currently the Principal of the multidisciplinary design and marketing firm lankinhouse design. 

 Cheryl Giraudy 

 Architect, and Associate Professor at OCAD University

Cheryl is an Architect, and Associate Professor at OCAD University, Toronto. She recently completed an MSc. in Inclusive and Accessible Design at University of Salford, UK. She is a member of the Ontario Association of Architects, and Royal Architectural Institute of Canada, and affiliate member of the National Register of Access Consultants in the UK. She has been a licensed practitioner for over twenty years with a particular focus on accessibility, communication, and wayfinding design for public and commercial facilities. Cheryl has undertaken many architectural and interior design projects, and provided advice to private and public institutions, including municipal and federal government departments on facilities programming, user assessments, communication strategies, and planning policies to meet inclusive goals for end-users of buildings, products and services.

From 2008-2013, Cheryl held the position of Associate Dean, Faculty of Design, Ontario College of Art & Design University (OCAD U), a faculty that houses six undergraduate design programs including Advertising, Graphic Design, Industrial and Environmental Design, Illustration and Material Arts & Design. In addition, she held the position of Co-Chair, Accessibility Sub-Committee, OCAD University contributing to the implementation of Ontario’s accessibility regulations under AODA (2005) at the university. She is currently a design professor engaging students and institutions including hospitals, social change networks in real-world learning collaborations centred on accessible design.

 Bob Mills, B.A., RGD

 President, Pier 8 Group -Integrated Marketing

Bob is a talented brand strategist and communications specialist who works with municipalities and public sector agencies to develop branding strategies, marketing campaigns and communications programs.

He was the founder of Wordsmith Design & Advertising and currently serves as president and creative director at Pier 8 Group, an integrated marketing firm located in Hamilton, Ontario.

Bob works with municipalities across Ontario, managing research and branding projects, public awareness campaigns and destination marketing initiatives. He has directed several award-winning campaigns promoting tourism, public health, municipal recycling and the environment.

A graduate of McMaster University’s economic program (1986), he taught communication design in the post-graduate Public Relations program at the University of Western Ontario (2005-2010). Bob is a member of RGD Ontario, the provincially-chartered association of graphic designers. He is a resident of Dundas, Ontario.

 David J. Cash, BES, MCIP, RPP, CEcD

 President, Cash & Associates Inc.

David is President of Cash & Associates Inc., a management consulting company, which provides professional advice and consulting services in the fields of economic development, urban planning policy and organizational/service delivery review. Recent consulting projects include the development of Cleantech Investment Strategy for Town of East Gwillimbury; assessment of Economic Development functions (ED Check-up Service); Economic Development Strategy for Town of Georgina; training for elected officials on Economic Development; and mapping/analysis of the planning process for municipalities. Follow him on Twitter @cashdjd.

He is a Certified Economic Developers and a Registered Professional Planner. He holds an Honours Bachelor's Degree in Geography and Economics, from the University of Waterloo. David is involved in a number of volunteer capacities, including as a member of the Port Perry Rotary Club. 

 Joanne Wolnik

 Tourism Development Manager, Southwest Ontario Tourism Corporation

Joanne is the Tourism Development Manager at Southwest Ontario Tourism Corporation. In this role, Joanne has the pleasure of working with tourism operators and other industry leaders to develop new and innovative experiences for visitors to enjoy in Ontario's Southwest. Joanne appreciates that travel is a time of adventure, new experiences and making memories. 

Joanne completed her Masters in Business Administration from Lakehead university in Thunder Bay, where she also completed her Honours degree in Outdoor Recreation, specializing in Tourism. 

When she's not at work, she's finding new trails on her horse or setting up camp somewhere in the backcountry. 

 Peter Gingrich, PMP

 Managing Director, eSolutions

With twenty two years of experience managing a wide range of website development, custom applications, graphic design, and marketing projects, Peter brings a broad perspective to each assignment. A Managing Director of eSolutions, he is responsible for the growth and development of Eastern Canada while continuing to contribute to the team as a whole.

A certified Project Management Professional (PMP), Peter has a high level of familiarity with all aspects of web development: analysis of business objectives; site architecture; site design; application development; search engine marketing; web hosting infrastructure; and content management systems. His clients include public sector (health care and municipal) as well as NGO organizations and private sector firms.

Peter’s background is entrepreneurial, having owned and operated a website development company dating back to the early days of the web. From small website projects to large custom applications Peter applies the same passion and enthusiasm for every job and every client. Priding himself on responsiveness and mutually beneficial customer relationships, he brings that extra element to each project that has resulted in the establishment of a loyal and satisfied customer base.

 Richard Innes

 President, Brain Trust Marketing & Communications

Richard has a background steeped in the advertising, travel and hospitality industries. As a marketing specialist he has held senior roles in both national and international advertising agencies and managed assignments for some of the countries largest advertisers including Nestle, Honda, Chrysler, the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Delta Hotels, the Canadian Tourism Commission, and Tourism Toronto.

As Vice President Marketing at Tourism Toronto, a position he held for seven years, he helped establish Toronto’s position as a leading destination for leisure, meetings, convention, sport and incentive travel.

 Richard established BRAIN TRUST in 2000. It is a firm specializing in tourism experience and destination development, marketing plan development and creative execution. The clients they serve are a long list of private and public sector organizations primarily from the travel, tourism and hospitality sectors.

Richard lives in Mississauga Ontario, is an avid golfer and is active on several not-for-profit Boards. Richard recently served on the Board of the Tourism Industry Association of Canada. In 2012 he was awarded the Queens Jubilee Medal for his contribution to Canada’s tourism industry.

 Saj Jamal

 VP Marketing and Product Development, Communitech 

Communitech is an industry-led innovation hub that supports, fosters and celebrates a community of over 1,100 tech companies. We support companies at all stages of growth and development—from startups to rapidly-growing mid-sized companies and large global players—and we have fun doing it!

Born in Mbarara, lived in the UK, and chose Kitchener. His greatest teachers are his wife & 4 children. His 2 dogs are his tutors & extra help during detentions.  education:  Ontario College of Art & Design, Schulich Executive at York;  titles: Director of Global Brand, Creative Director, Managing Partner, VP Marketing;  clients and work: Semex, Jiffy Lube, Pep Boys, Manulife, ED Smith, PEI Tourism, Memorial University, Whitehorse, Cambridge, and Owen Sound. 

 Sofie Andreou, M.Eng 

 Sofie Andreou & Associates, Digital Marketing Education Services

Sofie is the author of the Your Social Strategy series. She delivers her popular and sought after business seminar series Leveraging the Power of the Internet  to 100s of professionals monthly. Sofie has recently started an Economic Development Business Series,, #Ptbo's Business Vlog, helping Peterborough be the place to Live, Play and Prosper! For the past decade, Sofie lectures to a "sold out" third year class, Online Marketing Principles, at Trent University.

Sofie is recognized as digital marketing leader in various groups including; economic development, Chambers of Commerces, small business enterprise centers, fortune 500 companies and the online business community. Her practice is focused on digital marketing training for both small, large, local and international companies. Regularly, Sofie is asked to appear on regional television shows speak as the local expert providing updates on digital marketing as it impacts business practices of all sizes.  

Sofie holds her undergraduate degree in Computer Science and her Masters of Engineering in Information Systems from the University of Toronto.

Sofie's passion is working  with Entrepreneurs and mentoring University Students. She is currently the Chair of the Bears' Lair Entrepreneurship Competition, founding member of StartUpPeterborough, active on a Humane Society Annual Walk fundraiser name Duke Trail Tours (named after her oldest pup)  and on the Trent University Business Council.  

 Tara Vinodrai, Ph.D. 

Associate Program & Program Director, University of Waterloo

Tara is the director of the Local Economic Development program at the University of Waterloo. She is also an associate professor in the School of Environment, Enterprise and Development as well as the department of Geography and Environmental Management. Tara holds an undergraduate and Masters degree from Queens University, as well as a Ph.D. from the University of Toronto. 

At the core of her research program is a concern with understanding and theorizing the dynamics of contemporary economic change and the emerging and evolving geographies of the knowledge-based economy. Her research is highly interdisciplinary in scope, drawing on the social sciences, and innovation, organizational and management studies. 

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