Senior Director, Marketing
McDonald's Restaurants of Canada
Hope Bagozzi has been part of McDonald’s Canada marketing for 13 years, and now leads the entire national team. She’s most proud of the work done over the years to engage in conversations about the brand that help shift perceptions. She was instrumental in the development of Our Food. Your Questions, and more recently on the ‘Not Without Canadian Farmers’ campaign.
Executive Vice President and Senior Partner
Christian has over 20 years of experience in the fields of public opinion and market research. Christian is Executive Vice-President at Leger and manages its Montreal research team. He is also a partner in the firm and acts as a senior consultant to the firm’s major clients. As a spokesperson for the company, Christian is a political commentator for the CBC and consumer trends columnist on Radio-Canada. One of the many projects that Christian oversees is the Leger annual WOW Customer Experience Index which is an industry benchmark that provides amazing insights for Retailers. Christian still teaches research methodology at Université de Montréal
CEO and Co-Founder
Steve Buors is a leading authority on digital marketing for multi-location businesses. He works with national and international brands to develop inventive strategies using existing and emerging technologies to find new customers, increase sales, and combine the best of national brand strength with local relevance. Steve is CEO and co-founder of Reshift Media, a full-service digital agency that specializes in developing and implementing industry-leading social media, search and website/mobile strategies to enable brands to achieve tangible business results. Reshift Media often collaborates with other advertising agencies to develop, implement and manage digital strategies that amplify existing media campaigns. As a senior executive, entrepreneur and thought leader in the digital marketing industry, Steve has spoken at a variety of events, hosted many webinars and actively contributes to a number of blogs.
Sr. Director of Marketing Communications
Heather Loosemore leads Walmart Canada's creative, content and PR strategy as the Sr. Director of Marketing Communications. With over a decade of client, agency and publisher experience, Heather has contributed to iconic brand identities such as Johnson & Johnson, Panasonic, RIM, HGTV, Food Network, Microsoft and Rogers.
Top Drawer Creative Inc.
Howard Chang came by his passion for retail marketing honestly. Long before running an ad agency was even a twinkle in his eye, Howard (at the tender age of 20) created a bicycle retail concept and quickly grew it to 3 GTA locations through innovative marketing and exceptional customer service. His passion for branding found its perfect expression when he established Top Drawer Creative in 1992. With his retail pedigree, Howard focused on helping specialty retailers win share through great storytelling and innovative channel strategy. With Top Drawer now celebrating its 25th anniversary, Howard has had the privilege of helping many blue-chip North American retailers win in an ever-challenging environment. Howard continues to spread the gospel that the brand story must lead in every channel.
Vice President, Ecommerce and Marketing
James is responsible for leading the marketing efforts at Roots with a focus on brand, non-traditional and the blend of digital marketing and commerce. Additionally, he is responsible for the company’s digital and integrated omni-channel commerce programs. He joined Roots 20 years ago and has functioned in a number of roles within the organization primarily focused in the areas of digital commerce, marketing and direct to consumer sales.
Vice President, Retail Strategy
Darrell is currently the Vice-President of Retail Strategy at Geomedia, a consumer research analytics and media company focused on retail marketing. His career as an executive leader spans a wide range of marketing and technology companies throughout North America and the UK. For the past 10 years, Darrell has consulted with retailers helping build their offline & online marketing strategies. He is a former Board of Director for IAB and RAC and has spoken at many retail conferences in both Canada and the United States.
Paula Courtney, a retail strategist with 20 years’ experience, published in 35 countries and advisor to Fortune 100 companies, is trusted by Canadian and American retail leaders to help them refine and create a superior customer experience. She is the product founder and chief strategist of WisePlum®, a SaaS-based research tool designed to measure retail customer insights. WisePlum® is a collaboration between LoyaltyOne, a global leader in customer analytics and loyalty program design, and the Verde Group, a customer insights consultancy specialized in identifying, measuring, analyzing and resolving the financial impact of customer dissatisfaction.
AVP, Marketing and Brand
Andrea is a seasoned marketing professional with 25 years of experience. She also has extensive knowledge and experience in brand strategy. Andrea has been a driving force behind the evolution of the Interac brand. While Interac services have been an integral part of Canadian consumers’ and business’ daily lives, there was an imperative to improve brand awareness, relevance and motivation in a time of significant change in the payments landscape. During her time at this organization Andrea relaunched the Interac brand, notably with the award-winning Be In The Black platform, recognized for its sustained success and brand building efforts.
Solution Specialist - Customer Intelligence
Philippe helps companies optimize customer relationships via actionable analytics. Philippe specializes in applying insights from advanced analytic techniques to produce concrete interactions with clients. In essence, he develops the best combination of technology and solutions to foster growth, and expand a loyal customer base.
Chief Revenue Officer
Claude is the former Country Manager of Yahoo Canada. Previously Claude was Chief Operating Officer, at Syncapse; Senior Vice President and General Manager, Digital Media, at Rogers Media Inc.; Vice President, Interactive Media, Astral Media Inc.; Senior Vice President, Digital Media, Alliance Atlantis Communications Inc.; and Executive Director, Digital Programming and Business Development, at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation; Vice-President, Broadcasting, Alliance Atlantis; and Vice President, at Salter Street Films. Claude also worked as a senior adviser to the Government of Ontario’s Cabinet Office, Premier’s Office and Ministry of Intergovernmental Affairs; a senior advisor and lobbyist at the World Association of Newspapers based in Paris; and, from 1990-1991, Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Administration at the University of Ottawa. Claude’s current Board work includes Vice Chair, OCAD University Board of Governors. Claude is bilingual (French/English) and has a Ph.D. from the University of Toronto, a M.A. from Queen’s University and a B.A. Honours from Bishop’s University. He is the author of Isaiah Berlin’s Liberalism (Oxford, 1994), as well as numerous articles on political theory and Canadian politics and public policy.
Chief Customer Officer
Joyce Gray is responsible for the oversight and integration of LCBO’s customer-facing divisions including Marketing, Merchandising, Store Development & Real Estate and Retail Operations of +600 store network. Serving as the critical voice of our customers at the leadership table, Joyce ensures a seamless, efficient, and engaging experience across LCBO’s physical and digital channels. Joyce joined the LCBO in July 2017 and is a seasoned retail executive with global operational experience. She spent eight years as COO/EVP at Indigo Books in Toronto and prior to that was Vice President of Gap Inc. in New York. Additionally, Joyce spent nearly a decade working for the Walt Disney Company in a number of progressively senior roles including stores, product development, entertainment and global strategy operations.
Vice President, eCommerce & Omnichannel
Lowe’s Companies Canada
Tanbir Grover is the Vice President, eCommerce & Omnichannel for Lowe's Canada. He joined Lowe's in the summer of 2012, to lead and establish Lowes.ca as a comprehensive destination for home improvement products and inspiration. In that time, he has worked to bring both of those banners fully transactional while also expanding the customer experience on both websites. Prior to joining Lowe's, Tanbir was the Director of eCommerce at The Hudson's Bay Company where he successfully launched the site and was instrumental in its growth and success. Tanbir has also worked for Sears Canada in managing their online business and has a diverse set of experiences through his work with Coca-Cola and Bombardier. With an Honours Degree in Commerce from McMaster University and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, Tanbir is a well-known and well-respected advocate of Canada's eCommerce industry.
Chief Commercial Officer
Maroun has extensive international experience in Marketing, Communications, Business Development and Project Management. He creates purposeful customer engagements that win more sales, where his main responsibilities are to promote and to drive growth for his customers. Maroun recently returned to Montreal after working overseas in Dubai and Bahrain for more than 11 years, providing him with the amazing opportunity to work and travel across many Asian, African and European countries. In 2014, passionate about business and technology, Maroun took on a new challenge to build the North American business for Exponent Technology Services, a technology company specializing in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAS) and auto-ID technologies.
Chief Commercial Officer
OTT Pay Inc.
William is the Chief Commercial Officer of OTT Pay Inc., a FinTech company focused on connecting Canadian retailers with Chinese consumers through WeChat Pay and Alipay. William has over 10 years of experience in the financial services industry specializing in business strategy and payments. He has lived in Canada, China, the United States and Japan. William strongly believes in the power of globalization. He is passionate about global disruptive innovations and how proven technologies can be tailored and localized to connect businesses with consumers. William holds a joint honours degree in Systems Design Engineering and Economics from the University of Waterloo.
Senior Retail Advisor
Retail Council of Canada
Michael has 20+ years of brand/retail/marketing leadership experience and is considered by many as a pioneer in the Canadian omni-channel and e-Commerce retail space. As an award-winning insight driven strategic marketer with a passion for holistic retail brand/customer experience, Michael has been on the front lines of retail industry change for his entire career with brands such as Black & Decker, Levi Strauss & Co, Hudson’s Bay, CanWest Media, The Shopping Channel and Herbal Magic. After spending almost three years advocating and lobbying for the Canadian retail industry at Retail Council of Canada (RCC), Michael formed M. E. LeBlanc & Company to leverage this knowledge and experience back onto the front lines and regularly is invited to share his insights on the current and future retail industry in Canada and around the world.
Partner, National Retail Leader and Consumer Analytics Practice Leader
Jennifer's mandate is to leverage her Retail and Consumer expertise in Omnichannel to help clients make sense of the vast quantities of data which exists in their organizations. She focuses on assisting clients in developing strategies to deal with an increasingly connected consumer. These strategies include -transitioning from a multi-channel organization to an Omnichannel organization by building and operationalizing eCommerce platforms, mobile capabilities and the re-designing the retail network. She also assists clients in embedding Advanced Analytics into her clients’ business to deliver a one-brand (“Omnichannel”) experience. Jennifer leads a multi-faceted and cross-functional team ranging from strategists to and advanced analytics teams including market researcher and data scientists.
Mario joined DAC Group in the 1990’s as an Account Director after spending a few years in leading marketing roles at Hertz Canada. Over the course of his career at DAC, Mario has been a driver of change at the agency – leading the three Canadian offices and working with senior management to transition 45 year-old DAC Group from a largely directory shop to one of the largest independent digital marketing agencies in North America with a growing international footprint in the US, Canada and Europe.
Vice President, Marketing
David is VP, Marketing for Mark's. He is responsible for the omnichannel brand strategy of a $1.2 Billion apparel and footwear retailer with over 385 stores across Canada, Marks.com and Lequipeur.com in Quebec. As an industry thought leader, David is passionate about the ever-changing retail market, supporting the needs of marketers and retailers, and has been recognized through multiple business awards for his excellence in the industry. David currently leads a high performing team of marketing professionals to expand Mark’s identity through the development and implementation of innovative brand, digital, ecommerce and marketing strategies. Over the course of his career, he has experience in B2C, B2B, apparel, food, grocery, specialty retail and software development industries. David has held senior executive roles with global brands, including Nygård, The North West Company, The Daiso and Esprit. In addition to his 25 years of experience with these multinational corporations, he has dedicated his time to support non-profit organizations such as United Way Winnipeg, Habitat For Humanity, Canadian Tire Jumpstart and Diabetes Canada. David currently sits on the Board of Directors for Hypertension Canada and the Calgary Marketing Association.
Leon's Furniture Ltd.
With 17 years of Marketing and Merchandising experience in top Canadian retailers across Food, Fashion and Home Furnishings, Darryl is a strong believer that the fl yer is a key sales and tra c driver for all retailers in the market place. His strategic vision and background in integration across media platforms has been key in helping organizations reach the customer with a cohesive and aligned message. His passion for the customer path-to-purchase, guided by insights and data, drove the creation of 700+ pages of content in 2016.
Director, SAS Solutions Consulting
Danielle is responsible for building trusted advisory relationships with clients across industry verticals to provide guidance regarding the business value of SAS marketing analytics technology and services. Danielle works collaboratively with strategic marketing and technical services teams at 89 Degrees to define and deliver innovative solutions that produce the outcomes marketers care about most – higher customer acquisition, retention, loyalty, and share of wallet.
Vice-President of National and Multi-Market Sales
Lisa Orpen is the Vice-President of National and Multi-Market Sales at Metroland Media, a dynamic media company with a proud history of connecting communities across Ontario. With over 30 years of sales experience at Metroland, Orpen leads the team responsible for building and executing cross-platform campaigns on behalf of some of the country’s biggest advertisers. Orpen sits on the board of directors for the Retail Council of Canada’s RAC (Retail Marketing & Advertising Canada) and is a CCAB Canadian Newspaper Advisory Board Member.
Vice President, Marketing
Canadian Tire Retail
An innovative and entrepreneurial marketing executive with a proven track record for delivering award-winning creative and delivering strong results. Eva oversees the Canadian Tire marketing team, where she is responsible for brand building, creative ideation, and marketing initiatives for Canada’s most beloved retailer. Eva brings a unique combination of international, corporate, and entrepreneurial experience to her marketing strategies, each one offering a fresh perspective, backed by solid messaging and achievable business plans that turn heads and power growth.
Chief Executive Officer
Gillian Stein is the CEO of Henry’s, the largest specialty imaging retailer in Canada. Under the tagline “Canada’s Greatest Camera Store” she is leading the transformation of the traditional retailer to a true omni-channel specialty business that prides itself on listening to its customers and the community. Born and raised in a retail environment, Gillian began working with the Henry’s team early on in her career in retail and has worked across a number of functions giving her a thorough understanding of the inner workings of the business.
Senior Vice President, Integrated Communications
APEX Public Relations
Jennifer is Senior Vice President of Integrated Communications at APEX Public Relations, an independently owned Toronto-based communications agency. As an innovative strategist, Jennifer leads planning and ideation for APEX clients leading to full 360 degree programs that include earned and owned media, digital and social. She works in tandem with account teams to develop breakthrough brand campaigns. With over a decade of hands-on experience, Jennifer has contributed to iconic brand identities such as Walmart, Samsung, Husqvarna and Google.
Founder & President
Doug Stephens is one of the world’s foremost retail industry futurists. His intellectual work and thinking have influenced many of the world’s best-known retailers, agencies and brands including Walmart, Google, Home Depot, Disney, BMW, Citibank, and Intel. Doug is also listed as one of retail’s top global influencers by Vend.com. Prior to founding Retail Prophet, Doug spent over 20 years in the retail industry, holding senior international roles including the leadership of one of New York City’s most historic retail chains. His unique perspectives on retailing, business and consumer behavior have been featured in many of the world’s leading publications and media outlets including The New York Times, The BBC, Bloomberg Business News, TechCrunch, The Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal and Fast Company.
Vice president, Marketing
Giant Tiger Stores Ltd.
Karen Sterling, VP Marketing, Giant Tiger Stores Limited, has an impressive track record of helping companies break through the clutter to create impactful and memorable omni-channel marketing. To elevate the Giant Tiger brand, she has created targeted private label brands, developed integrated customer strategies to fuel growth, and has achieved record levels of digital engagement. She’s an advocate for customer insight based innovation and is known for delivering a highly efficient marketing ROI. Karen’s a global brand builder and innovator who has proven marketing expertise in over 60 countries. As a creative, dynamic strategic thinker she has contributed to the growth and success of leading brands such as Kraft, Kellogg’s, Levi’s, GlaxoSmithKline and Yogen Fruz. Her straight forward philosophy is to put your customers first, deliver on your brand promise, continuously innovate, and above all else, be genuine.
Born and raised in Ottawa, Jeff received an honours degree in Economics from Princeton University and achieved his Chartered Accountant Designation, while holding a position with Ward Mallette Chartered Accountants. Making the leap to retail, Jeff joined Giant Tiger Stores, where after a number of years in operational and management roles, assumed the presidency. In this capacity, Jeff helped grow the business from a regional discount chain with 250 million in sales, to 1.4 billion in sales nationally as the third largest discount chain in Canada. In 2009, Jeff joined Farm Boy with a mandate to expand the business. Under his leadership, the company has grown from a nine store chain in the Ottawa region to now 26 stores in Ottawa, Kingston, the GTA and Southwestern Ontario with further expansion plans underway