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Carolinian Canada - Collaborating for a Heathy Ecoregion
Shifting The Paradigm Forum 2019: Growing Healthy Landscapes

A Critical Cross-sector Conversation presented by:
Carolinian Canada | WWF-Canada | Royal Ontario Museum | VERGE Capital

Tuesday, February 12, 2019
Royal Ontario Museum | 100 Queen's Park | Toronto, ON
8:30 a.m. – 7 p.m.


$175 | Student and membership discounts available

Join us at the 2019 Shifting the Paradigm Forum to explore diverse perspectives in accelerating the growth of healthy landscapes in southern Ontario. Look out for our e-blasts leading up to the forum featuring details from each of the panels.

Visit our Virtual Agenda page for more resources

Feature Panel: Big VISIONS

Join us to hear from Big Visions panelists share their win-win solutions for a green and healthy future.  The discussion will focus on the role of nature as the foundation for healthy landscapes and an important catalyst for healthy communities, relating to key questions like:

  • How can we collaborate to protect nature and create healthy, resilient landscapes where people and nature thrive?
  • What does a green future look like?

Moderated by WWF-Canada CEO, Megan Leslie

BIG VISIONS Panelists:

Janet Sumner, Executive Director, Wildlands League 

Kayri Havens, Director, Plant Science and Conservation, Chicago Botanic Garden

Smiling Water/Mackenzie Lespérance, PhD Student, Indigenous studies


By restoring and renewing our landscapes with native species, we can nurture native wildlife, protect our freshwater, mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, grow healthy communities that include nature and provide a better quality of life for people who call this region home.  Achievable solutions are within our grasp through new collaborations and ambitious targets for healthy landscapes.  Join the discussion as leaders from Indigenous communities, the non-profit sector, government and business share visions for resilient communities and concrete steps about how to get there.  Hear how diverse sectors and interests can work effectively together to grow habitat better, bigger and faster to meet planetary timelines for a healthy future.

More about the panelists:

Megan Leslie (Moderator): Megan began as head of World Wildlife Fund Canada in December of 2017 after nearly two years at the organization, first as a consultant on oceans governance, then as head of ocean conservation. Before joining WWF, Megan was a Member of Parliament, representing Halifax for two terms, during which she was deputy leader of the official Opposition, environment critic and vice-chair of the government committee on environment and sustainable development. In Ottawa, Megan introduced a motion and guided its unanimous passage to add plastic microbeads to the list of toxic substances under the Environmental Protection Act. She also worked across party lines to successfully expedite the passage of a bill to create Sable Island National Park Reserve. Megan was raised in Kirkland Lake, Ont., where in high school she helped organize against toxic waste coming to her hometown, with placards reading “No, no. We won’t glow.” After university and before entering politics, she was a community legal worker and presented at the 2005 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Montreal on the issue of energy poverty.

Janet Sumner, Janet has more than 25 years’ experience as an environmentalist. She has been the Executive Director of CPAWS Wildlands League since 2003. In 2017, Janet was appointed co-chair of the National Advisory Panel (NAP) with a mandate to provide recommendations on how Canada can meet the Aichi Target 11, protecting 17% terrestrial lands and inland waters in Canada by 2020. Janet is an expert negotiator, strategist and communicator with considerable policy reform experience. Janet believes the two greatest environmental challenges of our time are climate change and biodiversity loss. The solutions to both include protecting nature and addressing our land use footprint.

Kayri Havens, Kayri Havens holds a B.S. and an M.A. in Botany from Southern Illinois University and a Ph.D. in Biology from Indiana University.  She spent three years as the Conservation Biologist at Missouri Botanical Garden before joining the Chicago Botanic Garden in April 1997.  She is currently the Garden’s Senior Director of Ecology and Conservation and Senior Scientist.  Her research interests include the effects of climate change on plant species, restoration genetics, pollination networks, ex situ conservation, and invasion biology.  She is on the adjunct faculty of Loyola University, Northwestern University, and the University of Illinois-Chicago. She chairs the Non-federal Cooperators Committee of the Plant Conservation Alliance, is active in plant conservation advocacy with elected officials, and collaborates with a variety of academic institutions, agencies and stewardship organizations to help improve conservation efforts for plants and plant communities.

Mackenzie Lespérance, Shoobe ghee nee Niibish (Smiling Water) – is an Indigenous Research Fellow at the rare Charitable Research Reserve, an urban land trust and environmental institute in Waterloo Region/Wellington. She has completed a Bachelor of Science in Plant Biology and a Master of Science in Plant Agriculture from the University of Guelph and is now doing her Doctor of Philosophy in Indigenous Studies at Trent University.

Will you join us to discuss Big VISIONS for our healthy landscapes?


Carolinian Canada

Carolinian Canada wwf - Canada

This event is supported by Ontario Trillium Foundation, The Green Belt, and TD Friends of the Environment

Big Picture Collaborative: Join the Discussion