Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School
2 St Andrews Blvd, Etobicoke, ON M9R 1V8
Opening Keynote Speaker: Derek Forgie
Eco-activist and public speaker
Closing Keynote speaker: Stephen Bede Scharper
Ph.D. Associate Professor, School of the Environment and Department of Anthropology (UTM)
City of Toronto - Melissa Marcelline-Samuel and Brian Wong, Solid Waste Management (AM, PM)
Development and Peace - Luke Stocking (AM, PM)
Evergreen- Karen Dobrucki, School Ground Design Consultant (AM, PM)
Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup - Susan Debreceni, Outreach Specialist (AM, PM)
Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning - Shelley McCabe, School of Liberal Arts and Science (AM, PM)
Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning - Ben Mitchell, Lakeshore Grounds Interpretive Centre (AM, PM)
Our Poles Our Planet - Robert Adragna (AM)
The Elder-in-Residence Program - Clayton Shirt, Aboriginal Elder (AM, PM)
The Mary Ward Centre - Ann McGowan (AM, PM)
TRCA (Toronto and Region Conservation) - Raja Raudsepp, Environmental Educator, Tommy Thompson Park (AM, PM)
York University - Alison Ozog, Faculty of Environmental Studies (AM, PM)
York University - Siwon Yi, York University Catholic B.ed Program (AM, PM)
City of Toronto - Nancy Ruscica
Earth Day Canada - Jane Pilskalnietis
Evergreen- Karen Dobrucki
Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup - Susan Debreceni and Kathy Nguyen
Humber College - Roma Malik, Amelia Velasco
Urban Forest Inventory: Neighbourwoods and VSP - Danijela Puric-Mladenovic and Andy Kenney
Ryerson University - Claus Rinner
The GARDENS - Wanda Buote, Kavelle Maharaj
University of Guelph - Lindsay Stallman
University of Toronto - David Powell
York University - Alison Ozog
Opening Keynote speaker: Derek Forgi Eco-activist and public speaker
Everyone cares about the environment to some extent. The question is, what are they willing to do about it? Even the most enthusiastic environmentalist can find their attempts to advance positive change daunting and frustrating at times. Eco-allies hones in on what your specific eco-passion is and streamlines it to a laser-point. We augment peoples drive and focus their enthusiasm. In short, we turn: “I want to help the planet” into: “I am now effectively helping the planet.”
Closing Keynote speaker: Stephen Bede Scharper, Ph.D. Associate Professor, School of the Environment and Department of Anthropology (UTM)
Dr. Scharper’s research and teaching are in the areas of environmental ethics, worldviews and ecology, liberation theology, as well as nature and the city. He has published many books. Embodying the values of “public scholarship” and a deep commitment to engaging with environmental issues, Dr. Scharper currently serves as a columnist for The Toronto Star, Canada’s largest newspaper.
Providing a unique blend of the scholarly and the accessible in both his teaching and public speaking, Dr. Scharper has addressed and inspired a wide range of audiences and remains a much sought-after lecturer.
Virtuous Ecology: Faith, Hope and Love in a Time of Climate Chaos
As climate change continues to whipsaw our planet, how are, and how might, Christians effectively respond from the wellsprings of their own tradition. By reflecting on the three “cardinal” virtues, faith, hope, and love, in light of our ecological challenge, some potentially fertile and transformative paths may emerge.
1. City of Toronto
Brian Wong graduated with an Environmental Science Degree and started working with the City of Toronto, Solid Waste Management Services in 2006 as an Environmental Technician. After working for the City of Toronto for 10 years in various positions he currently works as a Project Lead which promotes waste diversion initiatives, implementation and educational outreach.
Melissa Marcelline-Samuel works with City of Toronto, Solid Waste Management Services as a Project Lead. She has worked on waste diversion initiatives since 2007 and is currently working on educational outreach projects with schools and multi-residential buildings. In addition, she is actively involved in the Multi-residential Contamination Project reducing recycle contamination and increasing awareness.
2. Development and Peace
Luke Stocking was born in Toronto but grew up on a 50 acre farm in a town called Uxbridge.
Today, he works for Development and Peace, the international development agency of the Canadian Catholic Church. He joined the staff of D&P in November 2006 but was first involved with the movement as a high school student at the age of 16, when D&P had a special campaign to end sweatshop labour.
Most of Luke’s work with Development and Peace is done in Canada, educating and organizing Canadian Catholics to embrace the Gospel Call to international solidarity. However, he has led trips for volunteer members to visit D&P partners in Zambia, the Philippines, Paraguay and Ethiopia. When you count his pilgrimage to Palestine at the age of 20 – he has travelled in the four regions of the world where D&P is active – Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East.
Luke has a Master of Arts in Theology from St. Michael's at the University of Toronto with a focus on Catholic Social Teaching.
He is happily married with two young children and lives in the Junction neighbourhood of Toronto. He sees himself as blessed to be able to support his family while living his vocation, which is spreading the social justice message of the Catholic Faith.
Karen Dobrucki is a graduate of the Landscape Architecture program at University of Guelph with over twenty years experience in design, project development and management in the municipal, institutional, residential and commercial land development areas.
In creating opportunities for her own children to experience nature, Karen not only recognized how this contributed to their health and wellbeing, but also that it instilled a sense of environmental stewardship in them.
Karen has shared this insight with others for the last eight years in her role with the Evergreen Foundation as the School Ground Design Consultant, embedded within the Toronto Catholic District School Board, creating environments where children in urbanized areas can benefit from a more direct connection with nature through green infrastructure projects.
As a volunteer in her home town of Markham, Karen was the recipient of the 2016 Landscape Ontario Community Leadership Award for her work in supporting the creation of James Robinson Public School’s universally accessible school yard.
4. Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup
Susan Debreceni, Outreach Specialist (Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup)
Susan is the Outreach Specialist for the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, proudly supporting a national network of volunteers for more than 10 years. Environmental stewardship has always been an important part of her life and it is a true pleasure to empower dedicated volunteers from coast to coast to coast.
5. Humber College
Shelley is a Humber College School of Liberal Arts and Sciences professor who specialises in communicating science to non-scientists. She is also an ecologist whose research investigates the role of the physical environment (which includes climate) in maintaining biodiversity. Shelley has compared the diversity of moths and butterflies on Ontario’s conventional and organic farms, and has investigated the diversity of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Canada’s Arctic Ocean, and Ontario’s freshwater ecosystems.
6. Humber College
Ben Mitchell was born on a Canadian military base in occupied Germany during the Cold War to a Scotian father and a Scouser mother. At the age of four, he and his family moved to rural Nova Scotia, where they remained for the rest of his formative years.
He received his MA from the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at the University of Toronto and his PhD from York University’s Science and Technology Studies Programme. He also holds a diploma in German and European Studies and will be pursuing a Masters of Library and Information Science in September.
He is currently the assistant curator at the Lakeshore Grounds Interpretive Centre at Humber's Lakeshore Campus.
7. Our Poles Our Planet
Robert Adragna is a young environmental advocate in action! He has had the opportunity to visit Antarctic through the Students on Ice Program and he has founded Our Poles Our Planet. – a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the majesty of the poles. He will speak briefly on how to start your own environmental initiative.
8. The Elder-in-Residence Program
Clayton Shirt is a Father and Traditional Teacher. He is the Wolf Clan
of Saddle Lake Alberta, Treaty 6. Clayton had been working as a
Traditional Teacher for more than 10+ ears in the Native and
multi-cultural community in Canada. He was taught in the old way,
working for many years with the guidance of a number of Aniishnawbe
Elders and other First Nation Elders in Canada and the USA, and was
taught to do traditional ceremonies, teachings, circles, one to one
work and to help all people to "walk in a good way" though life.
9. The Mary Ward Centre
Ann McGowan, OCT, B.Ed., M.Div.
A Catholic educator for over 20 years, Ann McGowan presently serves as Director of The Mary Ward Centre for Education, Justice and Spirituality, a ministry of the Loretto Sisters. Her previous professional experience includes instruction in pre-service teacher education at OISE/UT, York University and Niagara University in Ontario, course direction and instruction of Additional Qualifications programs, and the design and delivery of professional development programs for educators. Her passion for education and justice was developed over years as a classroom teacher, counselor and chaplain with the Toronto and Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Boards.
Raja Raudsepp, Environmental Educator, Tommy Thompson Park, Toronto Region Conservation
Raja Raudsepp has been an educator with Toronto Region Conservation for the last ten years, guiding students through numerous outdoor lessons and experiences. Currently, Raja develops and delivers programs at Toronto's urban wilderness of Tommy Thompson Park. In looking closely at shorelines in the park, Raja has seen, first-hand, microplastics washed up on the sands of Lake Ontario - many of these are plastic pellets, created for use in products but never meeting that end before polluting our waterways. The more she learns about microplastics, the more she sees how important it is to share this reality with others so that we can all take action.
11. York University
Recruitment and Liaison Officer, Faculty of Environmental Studies, YORK UNIVERSITY
The first of its kind in Canada, the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University explores the relationship between the natural, built, social, political, and artistic environments. Offering undergraduate and graduate programs, we are dedicated to inspiring active learners and engaged citizens who seek to create social and environmental change. At the forefront of cutting edge research, teaching, and learning, the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University encourages students to challenge what is, imagine what could be, and transform the future.
12. York University
Siwon Yi, Sandra Nagowska, Khiara Chua, Lydia Shin
York University Catholic B.Ed Program
We are a group of Teacher Candidates studying at the Catholic Education Centre that strives to incorporate environmental education into the daily classroom. We desire to spread awareness and collective understanding of what we ought to do as global citizens to provide, nurture and maintain the planet. As we graduate in 2017, we will enter the Ontario College of Teachers to continue to solidify the importance of our environment amongst our peers, friends and our students.