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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 e    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. 




Meg Ronson, M.E.D.I

Outreach Intern, University of Waterloo Economic Development Program

Meg Ronson holds a Masters of Economic Development and Innovation and is the Outreach Manager of the Economic Development Program at the University of Waterloo. A former communications and client services professional, she has spent the last year breaking into the field of economic development, specializing in data analysis and research at the graduate level. Having finished second in University of Waterloo's Velocity Problem Pitch in the summer of 2017, she hopes to continue advancing awareness, funding and support for small business succession solutions, as well as helping expand the co-operative sector in Ontario and across Canada as a crucial facet of the social economy. 





 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.


 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. 


Sandra Kedey, AOCA, RGD

Professor & Chair of Advertising, Faculty of Design, OCAD University 

Sandy Kedey is Chair of the Advertising Program at OCAD University, and has recently been promoted to Full Professor, Faculty of Design. With over 25 years of experience in both Industry and Academia, Sandy is continuously developing and advising on key programs, committees and initiatives for the institution to ensure OCAD U retains their leading edge in the global communications and creative market. She is fellow to several industry associations, University committees and governance, and has been awarded the prestigious Price Award for Excellence in teaching at OCAD, having also taught over 25 years at the institution.

Sandy is both speaker at both academic and industry conferences, has been published in both academic and industry publications, and is conducting on-going research in the field of design education and consumer behaviour.

During Sandy’s 25 years of advertising experience in Tier One international agencies, she has received countless advertising awards in Canadian and International markets for integrated creative campaigns and innovation. These awards include two Cannes Lions, the most coveted in the Advertising industry. She continues to run a robust professional practice.

Her experience allows a unique and extremely cutting edge perspective that helps clients navigate the communications waters of today. With a deep understanding of how Convergent Communications works today, Sandy is adept at making strategically correct assessments of communications solutions that will ultimately ignite brand loyalty and revenue.


 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,  www.BizMapPtbo.com, #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.  


 Stephanie Pagnucco, CMMP 

 Marketing and Communications Senior Coordinator, Tourism Northern Ontario

Stephanie Pagnucco joined the field of marketing and communications seven years ago after graduating from the University of Western Ontario with a comparative literature and technical writing degree. She has held various positions with the Municipality of Sault Ste. Marie, the Ministry of Natural Resources and most recently, Tourism Northern Ontario. As Senior Marketing and Communications Coordinator, Stephanie oversees all tactical tourism marketing contracts for the region and is responsible for all corporate communications.

Stephanie enjoys volunteering and sits on several boards and committees including the Young Professionals Network of Ontario, EDCO's Young Professionals Committee and the Sault Ste. Marie Community Development Corporation Board of Directors. She completed her EDAC Year One and Two in 2012 and recently graduated as a certified marketing manager through the International Institute of Marketing Professionals.


Stephanie lives with her husband, Steve, in Batchawana Bay and enjoys fishing, camping and spending time with her friends and family.


 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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