A national panel of public policy thinkers and practitioners
Senior Vice President, Policy – Business Council of Canada
Robert leads the policy team and the Council’s work on economic and fiscal policy. He has written extensively on innovation and industrial policy. Robert brings more than 10 years of experience in providing policy advice to government, including in roles as Policy and Budget Director to Canada’s Finance Minister and as Advisor to Prime Ministers Paul Martin and Justin Trudeau. Prior to joining the Council, he spent two years at BlackBerry as Senior Global Director, Public Policy. Robert also spent nearly a decade in academia as Associate Director of the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Ottawa and as Visiting Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C. He continues to serve as a Fellow at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy and at the Public Policy Forum.
Dr. Adam Kassam
Physician and past President of the Ontario Medical Association
Born and raised in Toronto, Dr. Adam Kassam is passionate about improving his patients’ quality of life by helping them functionally recover from injuries affecting muscles, bones and nerves. Dr. Kassam is a board-certified physician in physical medicine and rehabilitation and a clinical associate at Sinai Health and Runnymede Healthcare Centre. Dr. Kassam has an undergraduate degree in biology from Cornell University, an MD from Dartmouth Medical School, and a Master’s in Public Health from Columbia University.
Dr. Adam Kassam is past president of the OMA and is dedicated to sharing his knowledge about public health, diversity and equity, and research and education with the medical community and the public. Dr. Kassam has written for CNN, The Atlantic, CBC and The Globe and Mail and has appeared on CTV, TVO, CPAC and Global News.
Host, Taking Stock
Amanda Lang is award-winning business journalist, best selling author and chair of the board of directors of Covenant House Toronto, the largest agency in Canada serving homeless and at-risk youth. Lang studied Architecture at the University of Manitoba, before becoming a journalist. Her first job in journalism was for The Globe and Mail, and subsequently Lang joined the Financial Post newspaper, where she became the FP’s New York correspondent. Returning from New York, she was part of the team that launched BNN which in turn launched her 25 year on-air career that includes time as a CNN reporter, then various anchor roles at BNN before joining the CBC’s as its senior business correspondent, reporting for The National, and hosting The Exchange with Amanda Lang.
Lang is currently a senior contributor and on-air personality for BNN Bloomberg, CP24 and CTV News Channel. Lang is also a senior fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy and a best-selling author. Her book The Power of Why explores the connection between curiosity and success. The Beauty of Discomfort examines how difficult change can be, and set out strategies for how to achieve it.
Karen Restoule is a Vice President at Crestview Strategy based in Toronto. She is adept at fostering collaboration among parties to bring divergent views together to develop shared success, and specializes in organizational governance, change leadership, policy development, and stakeholder and Indigenous engagement. Prior to joining Crestview, Karen led an environmental consulting firm working with Indigenous communities, building on a prior role supporting First Nations leaders as Director of Justice at Chiefs of Ontario where she advanced innovative policy solutions to legacy challenges. She also co-founded BOLD Realities, to advance the industry-Indigenous relationship. Previously, Karen led the modernization of Ontario’s administrative justice system at Tribunals Ontario, including key transformations at the Ontario Parole Board, Human Rights Tribunal Ontario, and most recently the Landlord and Tenant Board. A graduate of the University of Toronto and of the University of Ottawa’s French Common Law Program, Karen sits on governance boards for the Banff Forum and Canadian Club Toronto, and advisory bodies for the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, Indigenous Partnerships Success Showcase, and Connected North. She serves on juries for both The Donner Prize and is a contributing writer at thehub.ca Karen is Ojibwe from Dokis First Nation.
Professor of Economics – University of Calgary
Trevor Tombe is a Professor of Economics at the University of Calgary and a Research Fellow at The School of Public Policy. He received his PhD in Economics from the University of Toronto in 2011 and has been at the University of Calgary since 2012. His research focuses on international and internal trade, public finances, and fiscal federalism. He has published in top economics journals, such as the American Economic Review, Journal of Monetary Economics, and the Canadian Journal of Economics, and is co-author of the forthcoming textbook Public Finance in Canada. He is also Co-Director of Finances of the Nation, has served on several editorial boards, and advises various governments on issues related to internal trade, public finance, carbon pricing, and more. In addition to his academic research and professional service, he is an active contributor to Canadian policy development, with publications through The School of Public Policy, general interest articles, and active media engagement.