The Team

These are the folks helping Small Change Fund succeed: our Board members, staff, consultants, experts and advisors. 

Board Members

Aisling Nolan
Aisling is a member of our board and has worked in the non-profit and social impact space for over a decade, designing, implementing, and managing local and large-scale projects locally and internationally. She’s had the pleasure of contributing to world-renowned organizations, working in disaster management, social enterprise, mental health, philanthropy consulting, and service design.
David Love

David Love is on our board and has been raising money, mostly for the environment, for over 50 years. His current obsession is helping organizations reap the benefit of the coming legacy tsunami. David inspired his first legacy gift in 1982. He shepherded his most recent one yesterday.

After fundraising from 1969 – 2012 for a number of charities, largely environmental organizations, he now occasionally works with his daughter’s direct response company, Agents of Good, where he is affectionately known as “The Godfather of Good.”

In 2013, the AFP Greater Toronto Chapter recognized his efforts by awarding him their lifetime achievement award. Far from marking the end of David’s career, this recognition spurns him on to be a better fundraiser every day. He does that by continuing to put donors first.

David lives near the Love Mountain Nature Reserve in Happy Valley Forest just north of Toronto. He spends his time there with his wife, children, grandchildren, and golden retriever discovering the magic of the forest.

David’s book summarizing lessons learned in 51 years of fundraising is available at https://hilborn-civilsectorpress.com/products/green-green Enter SN20 at checkout for a 20% discount.

Joyce Chau

Joyce serves on our board and is an award-winning senior leader who has worked in the non-profit environmental sector for the past 16 years. Joyce was the Executive Director of EcoSpark, an Ontario-based environmental charity, for eight years. In 2020, she joined Evergreen as a Senior Program Manager, leading national programs that support youth city builders and innovative solutions to increase the supply of affordable housing. Joyce has successfully led community education and citizen science monitoring programs across southern Ontario. She has been active in numerous environmental committees including the Ontario Greenbelt Alliance, Biodiversity Education and Awareness Network and the Southern Ontario Stream Monitoring and Research Team. Joyce is also a governor of the Ontario Land Trust Alliance.

Joyce’s proven success is based on a deep work ethic, strategic thinking, creativity and a collaborative approach. Her expertise lies in leading multi-stakeholder collaboratives, policy and governance, community-based monitoring, education and fundraising.

Mary McGrath

Mary is the boss: the Chair of the Board. Her passion is building and nurturing effective social profit organizations to create sustainable communities. She is the Co-Founder of Small Change Fund and currently is the Executive Director of Green Learning.

Home Staff

Abbie Branchflower McLaughlin

As Communications and Project Manager, Abbie (she/her) supports partners with messaging, grant writing, project management and digital strategy. She is the voice behind Small Change Fund’s daily communications, newsletter and social media and regularly produces visual and written content for both the Fund and our partners.

Abbie was born in England and now resides in Mi’kma’ki/Nova Scotia. She holds a BSc in Animal Sciences and an English Minor from Delaware Valley University. She earned her MSc in Animal Biosciences, Behaviour and Welfare from the University of Guelph where she also worked for the Campbell Centre for the Study of Animal Welfare.

Abbie got an early taste for advocacy – she began writing letters to various government agencies at eight years old and hasn’t stopped. She has a passion for wildlife and the natural world and volunteers as the Director of Education for the Friends of Sable Island Society, along with running her own educational blog about the Pryor Mountain Mustangs. She is a dedicated advocate for a variety of wild animal populations, numerous conservation causes and animal rescue. Abbie spends her free time doting on her horse and cat and nerding out over nature, music and history with her husband

Abigail Mendez Acedera

Abigail Acedera is a versatile professional with a strong background in finance and operations management. As the Operations Manager at Small Change Fund, she takes on a multitude of responsibilities including accounting, HR and project management.

With a solid foundation in finance, stemming from her BSc in Management Accounting, Abigail embarked on a career path in the finance industry, leveraging her analytical skills and financial acumen. Fueled by an entrepreneurial spirit, she ventured into the realm of freelancing, excelling in multiple roles such as Assistant to the CEO, Social Media Manager and Sourcing & Onboarding Officer. In these diverse positions, she showcased her talent acquisition expertise, digital strategy prowess and exceptional administrative skills.

In her leisure hours, Abigail finds joy in the company of her loved ones and indulges in outdoor pursuits. Away from her professional endeavors, she treasures quality time spent with her family, relishing moments of togetherness and creating lasting memories.

Aneesa Piracha

Aneesa is the Director of Technology Strategy for Small Change Fund and an advocate for using technology for positive social impact. With a background in technology consulting at IBM, she has experience designing and implementing a range of technical solutions such as mobile apps and data platforms.

She is driving a digital transformation for Small Change Fund and will support digital and AI endeavours for programmes and partners.

Aneesa is also pursuing a Masters in International Development, and is passionate about driving change in a sustainable, human-centered and decolonial way.

In her free time, Aneesa is a potter and practices both wheel-throwing and hand-building techniques. She also enjoys yoga to keep her mind and body active!

Burkhard Mausberg

A leader in Ontario’s environmental/food sector, Burkhard Mausberg has worked for non-profit groups for three decades. He was the founding CEO of the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation and the Greenbelt Fund and CEO of several environmental organizations, including Environmental Defence and Great Lakes United, which he transformed into essential forces for change. He’s served on the boards of NGOs and Government agencies/commissions.

As President of Small Change Fund, Burkhard works closely with grassroots organizations, provides expert fundraising advice and creates innovative programs to propel change. He leads our efforts at sustainable development through preserving, conserving and protecting the environment, fighting poverty, and informing the public.

Burkhard also inspires change by mentoring young talent to become skillful leaders. He writes extensively on vital issues in diverse settings, and in 2017 published the critically acclaimed book Ontario’s Greenbelt: Protecting and Cultivating a Great Ontario Treasure (Barlow Books).

Burkhard studied environmental science at the University of Waterloo and the University of Toronto, where he also taught for eight years.

Caedmon Wilson

Caedmon is the CFO and Accountant for Small Change Fund. He joined as a volunteer in 2019 and has been proud to support the Fund’s expansion and transformation throughout the unique challenges of rapid growth and the transition to remote operations. He developed a robust accounting system and new reporting tools to accommodate SCF’s rapid expansion and the inclusion of dozens of new partners and projects.

Prior to his time with SCF, Caedmon spent three years in Tanzania as Finance and Operations Consultant on rural healthcare, maternal health and education initiatives. He believes that transparent, effective financial management allows organizations to build trust with their partners and de-mystify the accounting process. He loves giving back to his community, one budget at a time.

Jennifer Teixeira

Working with grassroots organizations fighting to make the world a better place has become Jen’s passion, and through this work, she’s been able to refine a variety of skills from fundraising and graphic design to communications and campaign development and execution.

Working with Showing Up for Racial Justice Toronto (SURJ-TO) and other social justice organizations across the GTA has provided Jen with the opportunity to learn from others with different lived experiences, and to examine her own privilege and oppression. Jen’s aim is to help educate folks on various social issues and inspire positive change in communities.

Whether it’s planning actions for social justice locally or supporting initiatives globally, Jen strives to keep herself informed so that her passion for change can inspire others to move to action.

Jim Diorio

Whether it’s developing creative strategies and executions, positioning an organization to command attention and stand out, or translating a founder’s vision into words they can get behind, Jim’s strategic and creative skills move supporters, stakeholders and consumers alike.

As Creative Director/Writer, Jim helps both Small Change Fund and its partners with creative ideas, writing and strategies across all platforms, from speeches to social. Recognized with dozens of international creative awards, Jim has worked on hundreds of Canadian non-profits in addition to corporate and government clients. For over 10 years he was Vice-President and Creative Director of Manifest Communications, a social marketing pioneer.

In his non-existent spare time, Jim enjoys running and kayaking and has just published his first book.

Kim Bilous

Kim is VP, Development for Small Change Fund, and a lifelong and vocal advocate for nature and a healthy environment. Thanks to helpful mentors, she became a fundraiser early in her career, to help make change faster. Raised on a working farm, she studied at U. of T. and landed a job at WWF-Canada, helping to grow that organization from 6 locals to 130 staff, with projects from Brazil to the Arctic.

She has served on many boards and assisted large and small organizations to greater success, mostly in Canada, with time in Singapore. At Small Change Fund, she is responsible for plotting strategic direction and growth of the organization with the team, working closely with our partners and donors.

The Chippewas of Georgina Island are her closest First Nation community. They are water and land protectors and she joins them in these responsibilities. Kim and her husband have two sons and one ancient dog. She prefers to be outdoors, wondering at the details of nature.

Mike Balkwill

Mike Balkwill is Small Change Fund’s VP, Campaigns and Engagement. He develops effective campaign and advocacy strategies to impact public policy and shift decision-makers towards policies that help people, communities and the environment.

Mike’s approach to campaigning inspires hope. In his 40 years of campaign and community organizing experience, he has helped numerous communities oppose development projects that seemed to be “done deals” and win victories with broad public benefits. Mike tells communities that, while a campaign to mobilize broad public engagement will not guarantee a community can win, failure is guaranteed if they don’t fight back.

Mike agrees with Herve Kempf, author of ‘How the Rich Are Destroying the Earth’ when he says, “…the future success of everything depends [on environmentalists] thinking about social arrangements and power relationships; [and for] those who think about social arrangements to take the true measure of the ecological crisis and how it relates to justice.” Mike is the co-author of the Campaign Planning Handbook, publisher of  CommonAct Press, and has lectured at colleges and universities on community organizing, social change and social movements.

Nell Sykes
Nell is working for Small Change Fund as a Project Assistant for the summer of 2024. As a student in Political Science and Environmental Studies at the University of Toronto, her interest lies in the intersection between equitable social governance and sustainable climate action. Nell’s experience working in sustainable agriculture, food waste management, and international research complements and empowers her interests and principles.
Nell is passionate about protecting the environment and believes strong intersectional roots must ground climate action in every shape and form. She is excited to work with the diverse SCF team and enhance her knowledge and experience expanding advocacy networks and creating meaningful impact. Outside of work, Nell enjoys hiking, camping, running, field hockey, watercolour painting, gardening, and reading.
Robert Lombardi
Robert is the CFO for Small Change Fund. A graduate of the Ivey Business School (Western University), Robert received his Chartered Accountant (CA) designation from Ernst & Young. He then spent the next 25+ years working with various media and technology companies, including guiding start-ups. He loves thinking big as well as rolling up his sleeves and getting into the detail.

Robert lives in downtown Toronto with his wife and daughter. When he’s not working, you can find him on very long walks, exploring Toronto’s ravines and urban forests.
Sarah Ceci

Sarah is Project Manager with Small Change Fund. Her academic training, including a Bachelor of Commerce and MSc in Sustainability Management, allows her to bring an analytical and detail-oriented approach to the role. Along with her academic background, Sarah draws on her previous experience in accounting for a well-rounded and holistic professional outlook. This allows her to link accounting, programming, reporting, human resources and financing to ensure smooth daily operations and progress toward organizational goals.

Sarah is inspired by her passion for exploring nature, gardening and her furry friends. When she’s not hard at work, she is spending time camping or gardening, or with her partner, family or her two feisty tabby cats.

Sophia Young
After facing transportation barriers and watching her friends experience the same, Sophia became a public transportation advocate to create more opportunities for youth. At the age of fifteen, Sophia helped direct fourteen months of outreach, media coordination and a lobbying campaign for fare-free transit for youth thirteen and under in Regina, Saskatchewan. In response, the City of Regina unanimously passed a motion providing 36-thousand children access to equitable transportation. 
 
Since then, Sophia has continued to advocate for fare-free transit for all youth eighteen and under. As our Edmonton consultant, Sophia is building capacity and community for our free youth transit movement, Get on the Bus. Sophia has taken on the additional role of Program Coordinator with Small Change Fund for the summer of 2024. 

Project Staff

Andrea Visser

Andrea grew up in an oil community in Southern Alberta where she developed a love and respect for the outdoors and the importance of careful stewardship of the land. She realized early on that she wanted to spend her life living and working peacefully within nature’s intrinsic systems. 

Andrea studied environmental science and Geographic Information Systems and worked in the mining sector after completing her degree. As the Director of Operations and Administration at Iron & Earth, she now uses her skills and passion for the environment to help others transition their careers to the net-zero economy. One of Andrea’s favorite aspects of this role is connecting with workers across Canada who are passionate about putting their skills to work in service of their communities and our collective good. 

Andrea brings her skills and passion to Small Change Fund on the Climate Career Portal and Renewable Skills projects to empower fossil fuel industry and Indigenous workers to create and implement climate solutions.

Annisa Maryam

Anis Annisa Maryam was born in Bandung, Indonesia. Annisa started her career in the bustling art scene of Indonesia, both as a gallerist in Bale Project (2015 – 2017), and a program manager at Wot Batu museum (2015 – 2017). Annisa received both her Bachelor Degree (2013) and Master’s Degree cum laude (2017) in Intermedia Art and Art History from Bandung Institute of Technology and has received a fellowship from MEXT Japan as a research student in the Department of Intermedia Art, Tokyo University of the Arts (2017-2018). She moved to Vancouver in 2018 and was almost immediately pulled into the fascinating intersection of nonprofit organizations and the arts community that brought her to work closely with great organizations and initiatives, such as Cinevolution, The World is Bright (Impact Campaign), Story Money Impact and Inside Green. Currently, Annisa works on Protecting and Promoting Youth Mental Health in the Climate Crisis as an engagement producer, designing and distributing digital content for the weekly Generation Dread newsletter and various social media as part of the offerings of coping strategies, stories and resources to support the global community and organizations in moving through ecological distress.

Blessing Owamah

As Executive Assistant, Blessing Owamah plays a vital role in providing administrative and coordination support to the Protecting and Promoting Youth Mental Health in the Climate Crisis initiative with Small Change Fund.

Born in Nigeria, Blessing holds a B.Sc. in Biochemistry from the University of Port Harcourt, as well as a Master’s Degree in Environmental Management. Prior to her relocation to Canada in 2022, she held various positions spanning administrative roles in the Aviation industry and oversaw environmental administration and compliance in the energy sector in Nigeria.

Outside of her professional life, Blessing finds joy in creating cherished memories while spending time with her son and husband outdoors.

Britt Wray

Dr Britt Wray is an award-winning author and researcher working at the forefront of climate change and mental health. She is the Director of CIRCLE at Stanford Psychiatry, a research and action initiative focused on Community-minded Interventions for Resilience, Climate Leadership and Emotional wellbeing in the Stanford School of Medicine. Britt is the author of two books, Generation Dread: Finding Purpose in an Age of Climate Crisis, which was a finalist for the Governor General’s Award, and Rise of the Necrofauna: the Science, Ethics and Risks of De-Extinction (a New Yorker “best book” of 2017). She is the recipient of the 2023 Canadian Eco-Hero Award. Britt holds a PhD in science communication from the University of Copenhagen and she completed her postdoctoral training at Stanford Medicine’s Center for Innovation in Global Health and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine’s Centre on Climate Change and Planetary Health. As a practicing science communicator, she has hosted several podcasts, radio and TV programs with the BBC, NPR, CBC, and is a Canadian Screen Award winner. She has spoken at TED and the World Economic Forum and is a Chicago Council on Global Affairs Next Generation Climate Changemaker. Britt is also the creator of Gen Dread (gendread.substack.com), a popular newsletter about building courage and taking meaningful action on the far side of climate grief.

Dan Hendry

Dan Hendry has a simple but powerful model to transform public transportation and it starts with training youth. His success in Kingston, Ontario with on-bus orientation and free passes increased high school ridership from 28,000 to close to 600,000 annually. Dan is now working with Small Change Fund to apply Kingston’s model to cities across Canada through the Youth Transit Program. Dan’s concern for the environment is what drives him to take initiative in promoting sustainable solutions within the Kingston community and beyond. His combined interest in sustainability, innovation, entrepreneurship, student mentorship, and community have been well integrated into his personal, academic, and professional experiences.

Dan’s credentials include a Masters in Strategic Leadership towards Sustainability from Blekinge Institute of Technology (BTH), a Bachelor of Commerce from Royal Roads University and an International Business Diploma from Seneca College. In Sweden at BTH, Dan studied under Dr. Karl Henrik Robèrt, the founder of the Natural Step. Dan spent a couple of years teaching English in South Korea and is an active volunteer with YourTV and the local Canadian Red Cross Disaster Management Team.

Dani Lindamood

Dani Lindamood has worked across multiple sectors, including social enterprise, academia, and the nonprofit sector. She has a successful track record of program development, funding, and implementing digital tools for community engagement, as well as supporting grassroots campaigns. Dani holds a Masters of Environmental Management with a focus on water resources, as well as a certificate in Collaborative Water Management. She loves working on the Water For Life, Not Profit project because water touches all life and grounds us to be in the right relationship with nature and each other.

Erin Blondeau

Erin is a Métis mom, currently living and working on the west coast of BC. Her paternal family comes from the Red River Settlements and the Qu’Appelle Valley, and her maternal family is British and Jewish. Erin has nearly a decade of communications experience, having worked in anti-racism, entrepreneurship, and climate justice. She holds a bachelor’s degree in anthropology with interest in climate communication. Erin is a board member with Cowichan Women Against Violence Society and now works as a freelance writer in addition to her role on the Advancing Climate Emergency Policy in Canada project with Small Change Fund.

Florence Lachapelle

Florence (elle) a grandi et habite à Tio’tià :ke/Mooniyang/Montréal. Allochtone diplômée du Cégep du Vieux-Montréal en arts visuels, elle poursuit maintenant ses études à l’université Concordia à la mineure en études autochtones. Durant son parcours, elle s’est impliquée dans divers initiatives de justice sociale et climatique, et milite de façon continue au sein de la Coalition étudiante pour un virage environnemental et social – CEVES depuis janvier 2020. Elle y a notamment fait du travail de mobilisation de grève étudiante dans différents établissements scolaires ainsi que de l’organisation d’actions. En tant que membre de l’équipe de Small Change Fund, Florence est fière de soutenir les organisateurs locaux à travers le Climate Justice Organizing Hub en tant que coordinatrice adjointe de la communication en français.

Florence (she/her) is a settler who grew up and lives in Tio’tià:ke/Mooniyang/Montreal. As a member of Small Change Fund’s team, Florence is proud to support grassroots organizers through the Climate Justice Organizing Hub as the Assistant French Communications Coordinator. She graduated from Cégep du Vieux-Montréal in Visual Arts and is now pursuing her studies at Concordia University with a minor in Indigenous Studies. She has been participating in various social justice and climate justice initiatives and has been involved in the Coalition étudiante pour un virage environmental et social – CEVES since January 2020. She has done mobilization work within various schools for the student strike movement as well as action organizing.

Franz Hartmann

Franz collaborates with Small Change Fund on select projects as our Special Advisor in Community Engagement. He is the Coordinator of the Alliance for a Liveable Ontario and has a long history in building alliances and community engagement.

Franz served as Chair of the Ontario Greenbelt Alliance for four years and helped the Alliance build vast community support for the Greenbelt. He is currently serving as the OGA Coordinator.

Franz was the Executive Director of the Toronto Environmental Alliance (TEA) for eleven years. Under his leadership, TEA succeeded in getting key environmental policies adopted at City Hall, including a new climate action plan and a zero waste plan. Franz expanded TEA’s community engagement activities in all areas of the city and enlisted many non-environmental community partners. Prior to working at TEA, Franz was the Environmental Advisor to City Councillor Jack Layton and oversaw Jack’s civil society engagement activities in Ottawa.

Franz has taught numerous environmental policies courses at the University of Toronto and is regularly asked to deliver lectures and talks across Ontario. Franz has a PhD in Political Science at York University, enjoys science fiction and wood working and lives in Toronto.
Horeen Hassan

Horeen joined the Water for Life Not Profit project as the Guelph Campaign Organizer in 2021.  She has a strong history of advocating for students and has a deep connection to the justice movement in Guelph. Her time in the student movement allowed her to mobilize young people around environmental issues. Whether it was ending water bottling contracts, challenging plastic waste on campus, or pressuring her post-secondary institution to divest from fossil fuels, Horeen has always demanded better of those in positions of power. In 2021, Horeen walked over 100 kilometres visiting and interacting with communities whose drinking water is being threatened by gravel mining, developers, and other corporate interests. She has also been working to amplify the voices and work of those at Six Nations and advocating that the Nestlé/Blue Triton bottling plant be returned to Six Nations.  Currently, Horeen is working to explore the many intersections between the climate crisis, poverty, and houselessness, while also exploring ways to make water accessible to all communities in Guelph.

Jacqueline Tam

Jacqueline Lee-Tam (she/her) grew up on the unceded territories of the Squamish, Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations, in so-called Vancouver as a settler of Chinese descent. She now resides in Tio’tia:ke (Montreal). She has organized around pipeline resistance, fossil fuel divestment and mutual aid and is passionate about community care and dreaming into practice the world we want to live in. She studied Gender, Sexuality, Feminist and Social Justice Studies at McGill University. Jacqueline works with Small Change Fund as Co-director of the Climate Justice Organizing Hub.

Jaimie Vincent

Jaimie Vincent (she/her) is a coordinator with the Environmental Justice Research Alliance and works in academia at Carleton University. She is Anishnabe (Algonquins of Barriere Lake) from her dad’s side and of mixed English and settler-Canadian descent on her mom’s side. She grew up in Hull, Quebec, on unceded and unsurrendered Algonquin territory.

Jaimie’s background is in ecology and conservation science. Her credentials include a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Université Laval, a Master of Science in Biology and a Graduate Diploma in Indigenous Policy and Administration from Carleton University. When not in front of her computer, Jaimie enjoys reading, gardening, swimming, trail running and trying to get the hang of mountain biking. She lives in her hometown with her partner and their tiny grey cat, Comet.

Jaouad Laaroussi

Jaouad (he/him) is an organizer and activist who grew up on the unceded territories of the Abenaki nation, in so-called Sherbrooke. He has lived in Tio’tià:ke (Montreal) since 2008, where he studied history and has been active in several social movements (student, union, anti-racist, environmental, housing rights, etc.). Through his involvement in community organizing, he has always sought to draw links between different systems of exploitation and oppression in order to nurture a convergence of movements between different social struggles. Popular education and knowledge transmission are at the heart of his priorities at the HUB. 

Jen Gobby

Jen Gobby (she/her) is a settler activist-researcher with a focus on climate justice, systems change and settler-Indigenous relations in climate movements in so-called Canada. She completed her PhD at McGill in 2019 and is now an Affiliate Assistant Professor at Concordia University. Jen teaches environmental studies courses at McGill, Concordia and Bishops Universities.  She is the author of More Powerful Together: Conversations with Climate Activists and Indigenous Land Defenders.

Jen lives on a small farm in the Eastern Townships of Quebec. She is a Research Coordinator for the Environmental Justice Research Alliance. 

Joan Faux

Joan’s role is Administration & Communication with the Keep the Greenbelt Promise Campaign. She developed an early love for water and nature while growing up along the shore of Lake Erie in the Niagara peninsula. Her mother, a high school geography teacher and her father, a superintendent of wastewater treatment plants, were big influences. Joan has fond memories which range from beach days, family camping and visiting farm markets to poring over maps and rock samples with her mom and visiting pump stations with her dad. Joan studied  Chemistry, earning a B.Sc.(McMaster University), a M.Sc. (University of Toronto) and a B.Ed. (Queen’s University) and taught high school chemistry, science and math in Toronto and Niagara.

Joan now lives with her family in Paris, ON, along the Grand River in the Haldimand Tract on the traditional territories of Haudenosaunee, Anishinaabe, Huron-Wendat and Attawandaron Nations. Joan volunteered at her children’s schools and became an advocate for public education. In more recent years, Joan has broadened her advocacy to include environmental issues and sustainability. She is one of the founders of the Greenbelt West Coalition, a board member of the Brant Land Trust and volunteered with the Keep the Greenbelt Promise campaign prior to taking on her current role.

Juan Vargas

Juan works with Small Change Fund and the Climate Emergency Unit as the Prairie Organizer based in Edmonton, on Treaty 6 territory. Through grassroots organizing, Juan has engaged with hundreds of Albertans about a just transition, mobility justice, and worker-oriented municipal advocacy. Born in Colombia, multiracial and cross-border perspectives deeply inform Juan’s work, having completed research capstones on environmental peace-building and energy transitions in South America. When they’re not organizing, Juan can be found enjoying local art and theatre, bird-watching, or scheming to amplify the presence of communities of colour in these spaces.

Kenzie Harris
Kenzie (she/they) is a settler residing on the traditional territories of the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee, the Wendat people and many other Nations. They are finishing up a Masters in Applied Human Nutrition at the University of Guelph. Kenzie has been involved in the movement for climate justice since 2019. A former member of Climate Strike Canada, most of their efforts have related to banks fossil fuel divestment, Indigenous solidarity efforts and climate justice education. Kenzie is currently a part of Climate Justice Guelph which she cofounded in late 2020. Kenzie also works as the Education Lead for Banking on a Better Future, and is a Trainer with the Climate Justice Organizing HUB.
Laura Doyle Péan
Laura Doyle Péan (they/them) is a queer Haitian-Quebecois poet and multidisciplinary artist, as well as a law and gender studies student and Climate Justice Organizing HUB Trainer, who is committed to social justice and fascinated by the relationship between art and movement work. Born in Nionwentsïo (Quebec city), where they first got involved in intersectional feminist, LGBTQIA2S+, migrant justice and racial justice organizing, they moved to Tiohtià:ke/Mooniyang (Montreal) in 2019, to attend university, and joined the fossil fuel divestment movement at the beginning of their first year. As an active member of the Divest McGill campaign, they got to participate in the 2021 Divest Ed fellowship, where they got to do research on school governance and democratization, and make space for reflection and learning along with other climate justice organizers from across turtle island and beyond. They are also one of the founding members of Collective 1629, a Black-led Quebec-city-based collective fighting against racial profiling and other forms of anti-Black state violence in Nionwentsïo. Laura published their first book, Coeur Yoyo, in 2020, and has participated in many artistic productions with the queer feminist collective Les Allumeuses, as well as with l’Espace de la Diversité. They hold a column in the literary magazine Lettres Québécoises, and have published poems and short stories in many others. The English translation of their book, Yo-yo Heart, will come out in London in the fall of 2022, with 87th press.
Luisa Da Silva

Luisa brings over 20 years of diverse experience in the energy, mining, education, and not-for-profit sectors. She began her career in the fossil fuel industry of northern Alberta, and has been influenced by her mining experiences in Canada and abroad. After a successful career as a professional geoscientist, Luisa moved to the United Kingdom to pursue an Executive Master’s of Business Administration. While in the UK, Luisa managed digital transformations at a leading private school. After her return to her hometown in Ontario, she worked in the not-for-profit sector with one of Canada’s top environmental charities.

In her spare time, Luisa is an outdoor enthusiast and spends as much time in nature as possible; transitioning to green solutions has been a life journey. Along the way, Luisa has learned that she is enthusiastic about educating others and enabling them to transition to fulfilling careers. She is thrilled to work with Small Change Fund on the Climate Career Portal and Renewable Skills projects.

Marcia MacDonald

Marcia is a research coordinator for the Environmental Justice Research Alliance project. For over a decade, Marcia has worked with non-profit groups to serve the research needs of community end-users. She was Associate Director, Research at the World Anti-Doping Agency and Director, Research Programs at Genome British Columbia. Her background in genetics and biochemistry prepared her to produce rigorous evidence-based research outputs, while her Secwépemc ancestry drives her responsibility to practice solidarity with Indigenous-led movements for climate and environmental justice.

Margaret Prophet

Margaret has a Bachelor of Education, specialized in Adult Education, and a BA of Psychology from Brock University. She worked in the corporate education sector for seven years at a director level, including as Director of Communications and Operations. Margaret decided to pursue her love of community and environment by volunteering for her local ratepayers association (Midhurst Ratepayers’ Association) while taking time to raise her family. This led to her getting involved with complex land-use planning matters and municipal politics as the Communications Director for the association. Her work led to enlisting the support of Margaret Atwood, Maude Barlow and David Crombie in support of the MRA’s call to protect the internationally significant Minesing Wetlands from urban sprawl. In late 2015, Margaret and Sandy Agnew founded the Simcoe County Greenbelt Coalition (SCGC) with 15 like-minded groups from across the region in support of an expanded Greenbelt. Today, as co-founder of the SCGC, Margaret is proud to partner with Small Change Fund on the Growing the Greenbelt project working towards gaining permanent protection for Ontario’s sensitive habitats.

Meghan Clout
Meghan is the Communications Manager for the Water for Life, Not Profit project. Meghan is a University of Guelph alumni with a degree in environmental governance. Her experience as an aquatic biologist during her undergrad solidified her passion for water. Shortly after graduation, Meghan started her career in the ENGO world working in communications. Meghan grew up in Northern Ontario, on the shore of lake Nipissing, where her interests in all things outside and riverside began. She enjoys backcountry camping, hiking, kayaking, canoeing and is an avid rock climber. “I do this work because everyone and everything deserves clean, drinkable, swimmable water. Water is life, we are water.”
Michelle Xie

Michelle Xie (she/her) is a community organizer, facilitator, and sociology student at the University of British Columbia. She resides on the unceded homelands of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples, colonially known as Vancouver. Michelle is passionate about building anti-oppressive spaces that are rooted in care and abundant in creativity. Through her work, she strives to strengthen cross-movement solidarity and shift power into the hands of the people. Michelle is a trainer with our Climate Justice Organizing Hub, as well as a coordinator with Climate Justice UBC and the Climate Resilient Communities Lead at the UBC Sustainability Hub.

Rae Oquirrh Dial

Rae Oquirrh Dial is communications strategist and social entrepreneur working at the intersection of climate change and mental health. She has a passion for taking unformed or complex ideas and transforming them into effective campaigns and captivating platforms that compel audiences towards action. She’s drawn to the power of narrative strategy and coalition-building at the intersection of culture, creativity, and climate. Rae has been featured in Outside Magazine, Forbes, Adventure Journal, B the Change Media, and is the co-founder of Wylder, the first female-founded benefit corporation in the state of Utah. She’s cultivated her entrepreneurial spirit by building three businesses, while also bringing two non-profits to life. 

Rae believes that entrepreneurship and activism often require publicly staking a claim for a world that could be, and walking an unknowable path so that others might follow. This way of being is a driving force in her life, and her hope is that it’s contagious. She has dedicated her career to building and amplifying organizations tackling climate justice, sustainability, health equity, and regenerative enterprise. Rae works on the Protecting and Promoting Youth Mental Health in the Climate Crisis project.

Sally Lin
Sally is a student leader with strong roots in community development initiatives and urban planning. She is a skilled graphic designer, dialogue facilitator and project coordinator. With experience ranging from student government to the United Nations, she is passionate about human wellbeing and sustainability, an issue that connects her deeply to the mission of the Climate Career Portal.
Sameen Ashraf


Sameen Ashraf (she/they) is an educator and workshop facilitator who believes that climate justice and racial justice are inextricably intertwined. She was born in Bangladesh and grew up on the unceded territories of the q̓ʷɑ:n̓ƛ̓ən̓ (Kwantlen), SEMYOME (Semiahmoo), q̓ic̓əy̓ (Katzie), kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem), and qiqéyt (Qayqayt) First Nations. Sameen graduated from Simon Fraser University with a degree in psychology and has developed and facilitated anti-racism and anti-oppression workshops since 2018. And now, Sameen is a trainer with our Climate Justice Organizing Hub which provides capacity building and training workshops to grassroots activists working toward a just transition.

Sara Adams

Sara (she/her) is an educator, facilitator and organizer who grew up on the unceded territories of the Algonquin nation in so-called Ottawa. Based in Tio’tia:ke (Montréal), Sara has been involved in climate justice organizing since 2019 and currently organizes with Small Change Fund for the Climate Justice Organizing Hub. 

She is a committed socialist and feminist dedicated to building a livable world for all.

Sophie Kohn

Sophie Kohn (she/her) is a writer and comedian whose most meaningful experiences have happened outdoors: her blissful summers at overnight camp in the Haliburton Highlands; her travel writing job with Outpost magazine where she spent a month hiking in the Borneo rainforest and getting devoured by leeches; the summer she paddled the Yukon River.

After earning a graduate degree in journalism, Sophie became a writer for Ecojustice and went on to write for many CBC shows including George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight and q with Tom Power. Her written work has appeared in The New Yorker, McSweeney’s, Chatelaine, Reader’s Digest, Hazlitt, Outpost, and The Globe and Mail.

Sophie is a graduate of the Second City conservatory program and has performed stand-up comedy for many years. She’s now a humour writing instructor at Second City and the founder of Brave New Word, a therapeutic writing workshop that helps people write their way through painful and disorienting life events.

Sophie works as an engagement producer on Protecting and Promoting Youth Mental Health in the Climate Crisis. She writes the weekly Generation Dread newsletter and offers readers coping strategies, stories, and a strong community to help them move through various forms of ecological grief. Sophie lives in Nelson, B.C. with her partner and their son.

Tom Liacas
Prior to founding our joint project, the Climate Justice Organizing Hub, Tom (he/him) worked as an advocacy mobilization consultant serving NGOs in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia and New Zealand. As a researcher and analyst, he has released several reports on emerging campaign practices and publishes frequently in the Stanford Social Innovation Review. To share knowledge openly with other campaigners, Tom devotes his volunteer hours to bottom-lining the Blueprints for Change network, which produces free “how-to” guides for progressive change makers.
Waasekom

Waasekom is Turtle Clan Anishinaabe from Saugeen First Nation and the Kettle & Stoney Point First Nations on the southeastern shores of Lake Huron. He is an avid paddler, having led four ceremonial canoe journeys throughout the Great Lakes to raise awareness about Water, Climate Change, and Indigenous sovereign responsibilities. His journey began in response to the Water Walks where he has been a protector and Eagle Staff carrier on seven Walks.

Waasekom is taking on the Agency for Water Pilot ‘Residency’ with Small Change Fund.

He is known for starting Picking Up the Bundles Canoe Journey, Niwiijiiwok Doodemak (Gathering of Clans), the Great Lakes Petition, Gganoonigonaa Zaagigan (The Lake is Speaking to Us), and most recently the Elegy of Ancestors. His great passion is in building generational tools and agency for Indigenous-led nation building.

Waasekom was also the recipient of NDN Collective’s prestigious Changemaker Fellowship, recognized for his work in restoring Indigenous governance, water protection and food sovereignty. Waasekom is presently engaged in the formation of an Indigenous Land Trust Charity and in creating the Elegy of Ancestors project.