2018 Surrey Social Innovation Summit – September 6

Surrey – Nearly fifty local and national experts will gather at the Surrey Social Innovation Summit on September 6th to explore how organizations are using social innovation to tackle some of the most pressing issues facing Canadian cities. Among the issues and topics that will be explored are Indigenous reconciliation, housing, social inclusion and mental health.

Presented by Century Group, the theme of the 2018 Social Innovation Summit is Social Innovation Leadership: From Thought to Action. The theme recognizes that when it comes to social innovation, getting from “thought to action” is critical if good ideas are going to move from the drawing board to reality. Innovative ideas alone are not enough to make the kind of progressive change that builds a better city.

To that end, the Summit will include 10 breakout sessions and four workshops that emphasize the need for thoughtful and passionate leadership, project and program partnerships, capacity building, and the practical “how to” tools needed to generate social innovation in organizations, neighbourhoods and cities.

“As a city that is committed to inclusivity, diversity, reconciliation and innovation, we recognize the power of collaboration and welcome the opportunity to bring new ideas and voices to bear on issues facing our city,” said Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner. “With over half a million people living in Surrey and 1,000 more arriving every month, we need to harness our collective creativity and expertise to ensure everyone shares the benefits of living in such a diverse, fast-growing and exciting city.”

The summit’s complete list of speakers, panelists and moderators includes:

  • Sarah Blyth, Founder, Overdose Prevention Society
  • Jessica Bolduc, Executive Director, 4Rs Youth Movement
  • Frances Bula, Freelance Journalist, Urban Issues and City Politics
  • Valentina Branada, Senior Service Designer, InWithForward
  • Kathleen Burke, Senior Lecturer, Beedie School of Business SFU, Envision Financial CLIC
  • Robert Byers, President and CEO, Namerind Housing Corporation
  • Curtis Carter, Peer Support Worker, Lookout Housing and Health Society
  • Darryl Condon, Managing Principal, HCMA Architecture + Design
  • Sean Condon, Managing Principal, Vancity Community Foundation
  • Joanne Curry, Vice-President, External Relations, Simon Fraser University
  • Marsha D’Angelo, Faculty, School of Business, Kwantlen Polytechnic University
  • Dr. Lyn Daniels (Cree), Director of Instruction, Aboriginal Learning Surrey Schools
  • Bruce Dewar, President and CEO, LIFT Philanthropy Partners
  • Camille Dumond, Program Manager, Refugee Livelihood Lab, RADIUS SFU
  • Brenda Fernie, Vice-President, Seyem Qwantlen Business Group
  • Michael Geller, Architect and Property Developer, The Geller Group
  • Daljit Gill-Badesha, Manager of Healthy Communities, City of Surrey
  • Michael Heeney, President and CEO, Surrey City Centre Development Corporation (SCDC)
  • Claudia Hepburn, CEO, Immigrant Access Fund (IAF)
  • David Hutniak, CEO, LandlordBC
  • Dr. Rajiv Jhangiani, Special Advisor to the Provost on Open Education & Psychology Instructor, Kwantlen Polytechnic University
  • Am Johal, Director, Simon Fraser University ’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement
  • Dan Kershaw, Executive Director, Furniture Bank
  • Hanieh Khataee, Strategy Consultant
  • David Lanphear, President, Envision Financial
  • Victoria Lee, Vice-President Population Health and Chief Medical Health Officer, Fraser Health Authority
  • Vera LeFranc, City Councillor, City of Surrey
  • Keir Macdonald, Deputy Executive Director, Lookout Housing and Health Society
  • Patrick Meehan, Director of Policy and Campaigns, Capilano Students’ Union
  • Shilpa Narayan, Mental Health and Social Justice Activist
  • Michelle Ninow, M.C.P. and Principal, M. Ninow Consulting
  • Steve Patty, Ph.D., Dialogues in Action
  • Jody Rechenmacher, Community Catalyst, Urban Matters CCC
  • Diane Roussin, Project Director, The Winnipeg Boldness Project
  • Cheryl Rose, Associate Director, Social Innovation Residency
  • David Sadoway, Instructor, Department of Geography & The Environment, Kwantlen Polytechnic University (Surrey)
  • Neelam Sahota, CEO, DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society
  • Mary Ellen Schaafsma, Director, Social Innovation and Research, Social Purpose Institute at United Way
  • Jeska Slater, Indigenous Youth Coordinator, Fraser Health Region Aboriginal Friendship Centre Association (FRAFCA)
  • Karine Smith, COO, Inspire Nunavut
  • Angela Sterritt, Reporter and Guest Host, CBC Vancouver from the Gitxsan Nation
  • Danica Straith, Director, Venture and Strategic Partnerships, Ashoka Canada
  • Tina Strehlke, CEO, Minerva BC
  • Katheren Szabo, Grassroots Leadership, People Placemaking, Friends of the Grove
  • Sheldon Tetreault, Lead Consultant, Surrey Urban Indigenous Leadership Committee (SUILC)
  • Kim van der Woerd, Principal, Reciprocal Consulting
  • Steve Veinot, Director, Supply Management Vancouver Airport Authority
  • Ben Weinlick, Senior Leader of Research and Social Innovation, Action Lab and Think Jar Collective
  • Dr. Fiona Whittington-Walsh, Chair, Department of Sociology, Kwantlen Polytechnic University and President, Inclusion BC


This year’s summit keynote addresses, breakout sessions and workshops include:

Keynote addresses

  • Reconcile This: The Power of Story, Indigenous Voice and the Truth
  • Leading to Develop People

Breakout Sessions

  • Social Innovation Leadership: The Changemaker’s Journey
  • Social Enterprises: Economic Strategies for Social Good
  • Suburbanization and the Compounding of the Housing Challenge
  • Social Innovation: Beyond the Buzz
  • Designing for Social Inclusion: Purposeful Cities
  • Nurturing and Building Social Innovation Leadership
  • Innovating Through Crisis: Challenging the Opioid Epidemic
  • Thinking Inside the Circle: 10,000 Years of Indigenous Innovation
  • Social Innovation Labs: From Drawing Board to Reality
  • Creating A Culture of Commitment

Workshop Sessions

  • The Practice of Social Innovation Labs
  • Getting to What Matters: How to Evaluate and Communicate your Impact
  • How a Struggle Became a Journey: The Importance of Connection & Conversation for Youth and Mental Wellness
  • ‘Afterschool for All’: A Shift in Planning, Policy, and Leadership Potential


For more information about the Surrey Social Innovation Summit, visit http://www.surrey.ca/community/19760.aspx

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