2018 Speakers

Speaker details will be posted here as they become available.



Joanne Blake, Certified Image Consultant, Author, Speaker, Trainer & Etiquette Expert

Joanne Blake is an internationally known speaker, trainer and image consultant. She is a Certified Image Professional, one of only 200 image consultants in the world who holds this professional designation through the Association of Image Consultants International.  She is a lifelong learner who has also achieved her Professional Coaching designation.

Joanne is a valued commentator for television and radio and has been featured in publications such as The Globe and Mail and The New York Times to name a few.  In addition, she has co-authored a book called Executive Image Power.

Joanne Blake’s personal expertise lies in helping team members align their own brand with their organization’s brand to help build stronger relationships.  Her warm, down-to-earth approach helps her connect with and inspire people to be the best they can be.

View Joanne’s video at http://www.styleforsuccess.com

Alison McMahon, Founder & CEO, Cannabis at Work

Alison McMahon_SQ_150x150Alison McMahon (@alisonlmcmahon) is the CEO of Cannabis At Work, a Certified Human Resource Professional, educator and entrepreneur. After 10 years of providing HR solutions to customers across Canada, she founded Cannabis at Work in 2015. Cannabis at Work (@cannabisatwork) is the leading source in Canada for cannabis jobs, recruitment services, online industry training, and workplace impairment training.

Alison holds a Bachelor of Human Resources and Labour Relations (B.HRLR) and a Certified Professional in Human Resources (CPHR) designation. Alison served on the board for the Human Resources Institute of Alberta (HRIA) for 3 years. In addition, Alison is a former Term Instructor at the MacEwan University School of Business.


Dr. Francesco Mosaico, Medical Director, Boyle McCauley Health Centre

Dr Francesco MosaicoDr. Mosaico is a family-physician and the medical director of the Boyle McCauley Health Centre – an Edmonton-based community health centre that provides holistic and inter-disciplinary primary health care to marginalized populations. Dr. Mosaico completed medical school at the University of Alberta, residency at Queen’s University, and has practiced medicine full-time at the Boyle McCauley Health Centre for the past 10 years.

Additionally, Dr. Mosaico is a Clinical Lecturer with the University of Alberta Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, and regularly helps to train medical students and residents. He’s involved with the Alberta Health Services Addiction and Mental Health Strategic Clinical Network; Alberta Health Services Integration of Opiate Replacement Treatment in Primary Care initiative. He has also helped to lead and participate in the Change in Mind Initiative, a partnership between several Alberta non-profit organizations, including the BMHC and the Palix foundation. Change In Mind aims to integrate established and emerging science relating to the impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences. He has a passion for initiatives related to improvement of the health status of members of the community who are incarcerated or otherwise involved with the Justice system.

Marni Panas, Senior Advisor Diversity and Inclusion, ‎Alberta Health Services

Marni Panas_SQ_150x150

Marni Panas (@marnipanas) is a Senior Advisor Diversity and Inclusion with Alberta Health Services where she is co-leading the development and implementation of a provincial diversity and inclusion plan aimed at creating safe, welcoming and inclusive environments for AHS’s staff, patients and families.

She holds a degree in Health Administration and is currently working on her designation as a Canadian Certified Inclusion Professional. She has contributed to legislation and policy protecting human rights for individuals at the provincial and federal levels. She was also part of the Advisory Committee that helped draft the apology that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivered to LGBTQ people in Canada in the House of Commons on November 28, 2017 for discrimination and injustices faced by this community as a result of federal legislation, policies and programs.

Marni will share her experiences and expertise in inclusive health and cultural safety for LGBTQ+ people locally, nationally and internationally. Marni is also a transgender woman, who has been very transparent throughout her journey in the hopes of fostering acceptance through education and respectful dialogue.

Detective Guy Pilon, Edmonton Police Service

Detective Guy Pilon and leads the Clandestine Labs team at the Edmonton Police Service. With 37 years’ experience in policing, he has been declared a drug expert in Alberta Provincial Court and the Court of Queen’s Bench and has shared his expertise with professional organizations for the last 15 years.

His background includes many years in patrol, surveillance, and undercover operations. He was promoted to Detective in Vice Unit investigating pimping and prostitution related offences. He then transferred to the Gang Unit where he investigated crimes including homicide, abductions and drug investigations. In his current work with Clandestine Labs, he’s involved in interdicting and dismantling clandestine labs.

Petra Schulz, Parent Advocate

Petra Schulz_SQ_150x150Petra Schulz is a founding member of Moms Stop the Harm, a national network of Canadian mothers and families whose loved ones have died due to substance use. Petra lost her 25-year-old son, Danny, to an accidental fentanyl overdose in 2014.

She serves on Alberta’s Opioid Emergency Response Commission, is a research partner on a mother’s advocacy project with scientists from the University of Alberta, University of Calgary and University of British Columbia, and has been a guest speaker at numerous conferences and community meetings.

Through the lessons learned from her personal experience and by sharing Danny’s story, Petra has become an advocate for drug policy reform aimed at reducing the harm associated with substance use.

Glenda Tarnowski, Director of Professional Practice, College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta


Glenda Tarnowski achieved a Master of Arts in Leadership with Health specialization in 2017. Since completion of the practical nurse program in 1984, Glenda has practiced in a variety of acute care, long term care, clinic settings and specialized perioperative practice at the University of Alberta Hospital and Mazankowski Heart Institute, as an Adult/Pediatric Cardiac Scrub Nurse.

Expanding her skills in healthcare administration she moved to the Workers’ Compensation Board in 2008 as a Surgical Coordinator and College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta in 2014 as Practice Consultant.

Glenda is a strong believer in life-long learning and competence development as key to self-actualization as an empowered professional and she considers it a privilege to represent a profession that has afforded her tremendous opportunity for professional and personal growth throughout her years of practice.

Marliss Taylor, Program Manager, Streetworks

Marliss Taylor is currently the Program Manager for the Streetworks program in Edmonton and sits on the Steering Committee for the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition.

She received her Diploma in Nursing in 1982 and Degree in Nursing in 1992. After working for 11 years in adult and pediatric Intensive Care Units in Regina, Edmonton and San Antonio, she moved to the high Arctic. There, she received her certificate in Advanced Practice Nursing and worked as a Nurse Practitioner in the community of Kugluktuk, and Nurse Manager in the community of Gjoa Haven, Nunavut.

In 1995, Ms. Taylor returned to Edmonton as the Program Manager of the Streetworks program and has worked in Harm Reduction for the past 20 years. She has been involved in Health Promotion/Harm Reduction Initiatives in Siberia and Guyana, and a multitude of local, provincial and national research projects.

In 2006, Ms. Taylor won the YWCA Woman of Distinction Award in Health and Medicine, and the Nursing Honour Society Community Leadership Award. In 2014, she was awarded the Clinical Innovation Award, also from the Nursing Honour Society.

Dr. Greg Wells, Physiologist, Professor, Broadcaster, and Author

Dr. Wells is an assistant professor of kinesiology at the University of Toronto where he studies elite sport performance. He also serves as an associate scientist of physiology and experimental medicine at The Hospital for Sick Children where he leads the Exercise Medicine Research Program. There, he and his team explore how to use exercise to prevent, diagnose and treat chronic illnesses in children. Previously, he served as the director of sport science at the Canadian Sport Institute, and taught elite sport coaches at the National Coaching Institute.

Throughout his career, Dr. Wells has coached, trained and inspired dozens of elite athletes to win medals at World Championships, the Commonwealth Games and the Olympics. He has studied athletic performance in some of the most severe conditions on the planet, like the Andes Mountains and the Sahara Desert.

Dr. Wells has had his own personal experience with the challenges and opportunities of adversity and human extremes. Late in his high school career, he broke his neck in a freak accident while swimming in the ocean and was in a halo brace before undergoing neurosurgery. Told by his doctor that he would never perform as an athlete again, he went on to compete at the international level in swimming. He has competed in events such as the Nanisivik Marathon – 600 miles north of the Arctic Circle – Ironman Canada, and the Tour D’Afrique, a grueling 11,000-kilometre event that is the longest bike race in the world.

Dr. Wells is the author of Superbodies: Peak Performance Secrets from the World’s Best Athletes (HarperCollins, June 26, 2012), which explores how genetics and DNA, the brain, muscles, lungs, heart and blood work together in extreme conditions. His latest book is The Ripple Effect (HarperCollins, April 4, 2017) which is a fascinating look at the power of simple changes to transform your health and performance, drawing on Wells’ world-class scientific and athletic expertise. A sought after speaker on the topic of human performance, Dr. Wells has spoken at top events like TEDX and the Titan Summit, alongside Sir Richard Branson, Robin Sharma and Steve Wozniak.

Dr. Wells is a frequent contributor to The Globe and Mail and has been an expert source to other top media outlets like ABC News, “20/20,” The Discovery Channel, TSN, CBC and CTV. He also served as the sports medicine analyst for the Canadian Olympic Broadcast Consortium for the 2010 and 2012 Olympic Games.