Core Team

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Emily Jones Joanisse, Co-Founder & CEO

Emily holds a Bachelor of Computer Science and an MBA in International Development Management and has worked in Information Technology for over fifteen years, in Canada, Europe and Australia. Emily is also a passionate educator, having worked for several years as a part-time Management Professor at the Algonquin College School of Business, and also as an elementary and middle school ICT teacher in Italy.

Emily is an alumna and former employee of the Canadian Shad program and has held variety of leadership roles in other STEAM and educational initiatives.  She is also a DJ and has performed both in Canada and internationally, and released music on the Italian jazz label Schema Records. Technology is an integral part of Emily’s life, and her belief that everyone should be able to use it as fluently as she does is one of her core motivations.

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Tas DAmen, Co-FoundeR & CIO

Tas Damen is a first-generation immigrant who moved here for her advanced studies and stayed for Love! She holds B.Sc. Honours in Computer Mathematics from Carleton University and Graduate Certificate in IT Project Management from uOttawa. She is a Software Architect by vocation with over a decade of professional experience. Her true passions of learning and teaching are currently channeled through instructing part-time at Algonquin, tutoring, and volunteering at OCISO, assisting new immigrants with tech job placement.  
She is a hacker, tinkerer, cook, mother, world traveler and Pilates enthusiast all rolled into one driven social entrepreneur, with the goal of leaving her community in a better place for future generations.


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Tamimi Ahmad, Director of community engagement and special events

Born and raised in Jordan, Tamimi moved to Canada to pursue an education in Communications Engineering from Carleton University. Having worked in the IT DevOps and automation industry in Ottawa, Tamimi developed a passion for technology while still being an active member in the community.

Apart from being a full time geek, Tamimi is enthusiastically involved in event planning, relationship building and volunteering in the community. Having successfully directed an event in collaboration between the Beijing Municipality and The City of Ottawa, he aims to have more impact in society. As well, Tamimi continues to be a contributing volunteer with the Syrian refugees' community in Ottawa helping them with translation and adaptation to their new environment in Canada.

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MONA ALTAWIL, Outreach and Feedback Coordinator

Mona hold a Master of Education degree and an Honour's Bachelor degree from the University of Ottawa. She has worked as an educator, skills trainer and coordinator in a variety of contexts internationally. She is interested in the development of learner autonomy in adulthood and didactic learning. She is a reader and a technology enthusiast.

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Marcos Rezende, Digital Analyst & Designer

Marcos is Brazilian, a graduate of Graphic Design, Post-Graduate in Digital Marketing Management, MBA in Marketing-applied Big Data and International Certification in User Experience for Project Managers by the UX Alliance. He has worked for different companies and market segments in the fields of Design, Web metrics and Media Performance.

Involved with volunteer work since childhood, he carries within himself the desire to change the world with small actions. Marcos loves technology, has a strong wanderlust and believes in the differential of experiences experienced by the intersection of ideas, concepts and cultures. He works with our team remotely from Brazil.


Board of Directors

Chair, Board of Directors

Chair, Board of Directors

Gerald Grant

Dr. Grant is Director of the Centre for Information Technology, Organizations, and People (CITOP) and Associate Professor at the Sprott School of Business, Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. He obtained his PhD in Information Systems from the London School of Economics and Political Science, London, United Kingdom. He is a co-author of the book The Value Imperative: Harvesting Value from your IT initiatives (www.itvalueimperative.com).  Dr. Grant has worked with many organizations in Canada and across the world promoting the strategic and effective use of information and communications technologies for social and economic growth and development.  He has consulted with The Commonwealth Secretariat in London, UK on issues related to national IT strategies, digital divide, and digital inclusion. Dr. Grant was a member of two Mayor’s Task Forces for the City of Ottawa (Canada): the e-Government and IT Taskforce and the Governance Taskforce set up by the Mayor of Ottawa in 2008 and 2009 respectively. He is also a member of the Advisory Council of DPI-The Association of Public Sector Information Professionals


Vice Chair, Board of Directors

Vice Chair, Board of Directors

Skye Cameron

Currently corporate secretary and EA to the President and CEO at the Canadian Museum of Nature, Skye previously worked for nearly a decade at MediaSmarts, a Canadian organization dedicated to media and digital literacy for youth, and has also taught part-time at Algonquin College. She has been a community volunteer through her sons’ school’s Home and School Committee as a member and as Vice-President. She has tremendous experience pertaining to nonprofit financial and operational management, and is also extremely knowledgeable in the realm of digital literacy. She is an avid baker and ukulele tinkerer.


Treasurer, Board of Directors

Treasurer, Board of Directors

 Ikram Zouari CPA.CGA. 

Ms. Zouari is the CFO at the Canadian Museum of Nature, and a Chartered Professional Accountant with over 20 years of experience in Financial Reporting, Auditing and Management accounting and extensive knowledge of accounting standards and practices. 

Ms. Zouari holds a master’s degree in management accounting from L'Institut des Hautes Études Commerciales de Carthage – Tunisia, High Studies in Accounting and Auditing from L'Institut Supérieur de Compatibilité – Tunisia, a Certified General Accountant designation from CGA Ontario, a Chartered Professional Accountant designation from CPA Ontario and recently a Public Sector Certificate Program from CPA Canada

Ms. Zouari is also a CPA financial literacy volunteer, a CRA Tax clinics coordinator – Ottawa Chapter and a member of the Financial Executives International Canada (FEI Canada ) and the Financial Management Institute of Canada. 


Gov. & Media Relations, Board of Directors

Gov. & Media Relations, Board of Directors

Janelle Feldstein

Janelle has a comprehensive understanding of Canada’s political system, government machinery, central agencies, programs and policies, gained over 30 years’ experience working in the Parliament of Canada. After 17 years as a senior executive she left Parliament in 2015 to devote more time to her interests in non-profit work. She serves on the board of the St. John Ambulance Federal District, the largest volunteer organization in Canada and the Board of the Roberts/Smart Centre an accredited children’s mental health centre that delivers specialized treatment and clinical services to improve the lives of youth living with complex behavioural and emotional needs. She is currently the Chair of the Governance Committee of the R/SC Board. Janelle's international travel experience both professionally and personally has given her a deeper understanding of culture and diversity.


Advisors

Strategic Advisor

Strategic Advisor

Helen Hirsh Spence

With three decades of leadership in the public and private sectors, Helen's extensive career in education has been the perfect foundation for her social enterprise, the Top Sixty Over Sixty. The T60 focuses on retooling older adults with an entrepreneurial mindset and helps organizations transform their multi-generational workforce into intergenerational teams.

As a respected facilitator and motivational speaker, Helen is also a strong performer in multicultural environments. She easily gains trust and builds rapport quickly among those with diverse backgrounds, interests and life circumstances. She is fluent in French, German and Spanish.

Helen dedicates her spare time to support numerous causes.  


Senior Advisor, Sponsorships and Philanthropy

Senior Advisor, Sponsorships and Philanthropy

Paul Dickson, BA, CFRE

Paul is a non-profit sector professional with over sixteen years of experience in relationship building, philanthropy, communications, and stakeholder relations. His career has included leadership roles at post-secondary institutions, public libraries, in STEM education, and healthcare.

An active community builder, Paul volunteers with several organizations and has a strong affinity for STEM, healthcare, international development, Indigenous rights, social justice, and literacy.


Advisor

Advisor

Lisa LaRochelle

Lisa currently is a Registered Massage Therapist specializing in palliative massage and therapeutic care. Previously, she had a 17-year career in the digital and technology space as a technical communicator, project manager, and marketing strategy specialist. Lisa has both non-profit and for-profit work experience, a depth of cultural sensitivity through extensive worldwide travel, skills managing global and national projects, and a master’s degree in business.

Lisa's volunteer portfolio has also been varied, including Big Sisters, Random Hacks of Kindness, Search and Rescue Global 1, Hospice Ottawa and girltank. 
Together, Lisa's current and past careers have helped her shape her experience of using communications and technology to engage and delight clients and partners. She enjoys finding opportunities to share her positive energy and collaborate with innovative and creative people.  


Strategic Advisor

Strategic Advisor

Jack Noppé

Jack has worked in the technology sector for over 30 years and held various senior leadership and board member roles at Canadian organizations. He has a strong technical background, loves working with people, and enjoys learning as much as he can.