Our Team

portrait photo of Randal Boutilier

Randal Boutilier,
Sage of Shapes and Colours

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Creative Director

Randal has a wealth of knowledge in the nonprofit realm, understanding the key role that design plays not only in day-to-day communications, but in building community and philanthropy. This experience was built from his work at 12thirteen, a graphic design studio in Toronto that creates print and digital materials in the nonprofit sector. As a Registered Graphic Designer (RGD), he adheres to a set of ethical guidelines and applies them to his studio practice. He enjoys working with a variety of stakeholders involved in a project – and fosters an environment that is creative and collaborative.

His work passion is to distill complex stories and concepts into compelling and engaging visuals that are easy to understand and desirable to share. When not sitting in front of a computer or sketching out a complex theory of change, Randal occupies his time perfecting his mastery of the hula hoop!

portrait photo of Zahin Chowdhury

Zahin Chowdhury,
Alchemist of Dialogue

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Zahin is passionate about finding unique insights through a human-centred approach. She finds excitement in tackling difficult conversations and enjoys diving deep into chaos. Working across public and private sectors, research and analysis lies at the heart of Zahin’s work. She holds a Master’s in Industrial Relations with a focus on Human rights, Labor Law, Change Management, and Human Resources.

Being born in a young- developing Bangladesh, growing up in oil rich Libya, and landing in the days of booming Alberta, Zahin has an innate interest in human and social development.

portrait photo of Anuradha Dam

Anuradha Dam,
Time Sorceress

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Anuradha is a new Canadian who has worked for large and small technology organizations including Accenture Technologies, in Bangalore, India. In Canada, she has worked for Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC), a nonprofit organization which works to create economic inclusion for new immigrants in the Greater Toronto Area. She also has volunteered for United Health Network and Peel District School Board in various capacities.

Anuradha is an excel ninja, an art enthusiast and is passionate about writing her lived experiences on her journey as a new immigrant. She finds her inspiration in contributing to enhancing education and gainful employment for people and communities that experience marginalization.

She has a Master’s degree in Business Administration, specializing in Human Resources.

portrait photo of Tanya Darisi

Tanya Darisi,
Mistress of Measurement

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Tanya is known for her insatiable drive to make real and meaningful change happen. As our lead researcher and evaluator, she has a true passion for bringing data-driven insight in the fight for social justice. She’s a natural born problem-solver with a gift for navigating complexity and leading emergent strategy. For more than 20 years, Tanya has worked across the public, private and philanthropic sectors on a wide range of issues and initiatives that promote greater equity, inclusion and wellbeing for all.

Tanya’s great love is Theory of Change. She is ready to share with you her energy and enthusiasm for challenging assumptions, disrupting the status quo, and testing out new hypotheses as you pursue greater social impact.

portrait photo of CJ Deacoff

CJ Deacoff,
Data Wrangler

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What inspires CJ the most is working towards building a fair, equitable, and inclusive society. They want to be able to look back and feel their contribution made a difference in the world. They have 20+ years experience supporting adults with disabilities both in post-secondary and developmental services sectors. They are also a sought-after statistics and math tutor for students of all ages. CJ is known for being equally as genuine, compassionate, and insightful as they are rigorous and meticulous in their attention to detail.

Whether touring on their motorcycle or paddling the local rivers, CJ is always looking for the next story to tell. They have visited all of Canada’s provinces and territories.

portrait photo of Dylan House

Dylan House,
Olympian of Objectivity

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Dylan is determined to merge mathematics and humanity. He believes that numbers are a powerful tool in understanding and doing social good, and can be an integral force in uniting and inspiring action. Although a numbers wizard, he can just as often be found indulging in ancient texts. After all, he believes there is no better way to understand and challenge our present than by exploring the lessons of our past.

In understanding complexity, he takes inspiration from one of the greatest generals in antiquity: “Aut viam inveniam aut faciam.” I shall either find a way or make one.

portrait photo of Zaineb Noor Haq

Zaineb Noor Haq,
Dream Alchemist

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Zaineb  is an Interaction design student at George Brown, who is currently in her final year of the advanced diploma program. She has always been a visual storyteller driven by a need to understand and influence the audience. She enjoys the creative process but understands that creativity without empathy lacks purpose. Zaineb draws on a diverse background, with roots in textile design, graphic design, digital marketing and now is being trained in the field of experience design.

With a passion for creating meaningful experiences for users, Zaineb hopes to understand the users needs and frustrations and improve functionality and ease of use. Out of work, Zaineb is a foodie and addicted to spicy food and desserts. In her free time, she makes digital art.

portrait photo of Sohailia Saywack

Sohailia Saywack,
Data Whisperer

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Sohailia enjoys unravelling complex social problems using data. She holds an MA in Sociology and is currently a Master of Global Affairs candidate at the University of Toronto’s Munk School. Her research aims to demystify the relationship between the economy, politics, and social inequality. Sohailia has coordinated and conducted global research projects, analysed policies, and facilitated conversations which seek to promote equity in social and economic realms.

Her biggest source of inspiration is the transformative power of simple human connections.

portrait photo of Elaine Stavnitzky

Elaine Stavnitzky,
Knowledge-to-Action Catalyst

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Elaine has experience leading and implementing a wide range of complex strategic, programmatic and quality assurance processes to support leadership, staff, communities and children in international development and humanitarian aid programs since 2002. To date her expertise has covered on-going learning and improvement in 30 countries across 15 sectors, including gender equality and youth.

Elaine is passionate about developing systems that ensure people have right-sized information to trigger change making decisions. She gets a high from experiencing with others the “a-ha” moment that tips the balance for transformation at the individual, community and/or systems level.

portrait photo of Helen Tewolde

Helen Tewolde,
Goddess of Synchronicity

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Senior Advisor

Helen has designed and developed a wide range of interventions in the grassroots, nonprofit, public and philanthropic sectors. Her work has supported leadership, program and policy development in the most complex areas of public policy – always with a lens for greater and better quality access and inclusion. 

She loves solving complex challenges with bright, curious minds who dream of improving or innovating archaic, dysfunctional and/or unresponsive programs, policies, systems and perspectives for the purpose of greater and deeper impact. Helen weaves people, processes, policies and purpose together to achieve synchronicity as a catalyst for sustainable and transformative social change.

portrait photo of Geetha Van den Daele

Geetha Van den Daele,

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Geetha was born in India and grew up in the east coast – Prince Edward Island. She left the Island after high-school, and several cities/countries/years later landed in Guelph in 2011. As a passionate community builder and strong believer in that “alone we can do so little, together we can do so much,” Geetha combines her knack for collaboration, research, and evaluation in ways to capture and amplify learning. 

Geetha is also known for her sensitivity, and attention to, working with diverse populations and her ability to hold the space for conversations and insights to emerge. She has over 15 years’ experience in qualitative and quantitative data collection methods, with a special focus and passion for participatory, culturally-responsive, and community based designs.  While she does find herself referring to her self as an anti-researcher researcher, professionally speaking, she is a community-based researcher, a credentialed evaluator, and an Erickson professional coach. What do those things have in common? She designs and ask questions, in multiple ways, to foster ‘fresh insights’ and spark change. Questions, she believes, can and do change the world.

portait photo of Kalyani Vartak

Kalyani Vartak,
Idea Germinator

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Kalyani enjoys thinking deeply about social problems and finding evidence-based solutions. She holds a Ph.D. degree from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. She has considerable qualitative and quantitative research experience. She believes in the power of research to make change in this world. Kalyani has taught over 250 undergraduate and graduate students and has worked with diverse stakeholders such as academics, self-employed women, indigenous groups, and refugees.

She has volunteered with several organizations in India, the US, and Canada. Kalyani is multi-lingual and in her free time loves obsessing over ideas and books.

portrait photo of Lisa Villeneuve

Lisa Villeneuve,
Witch of Why

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Lisa believes that every time humans come together in twos, tens or hundreds, a spark of magic can be ignited. As our lead strategist, she is committed to channeling this magic toward equity and justice. Lisa is a trusted coach and facilitator with 20+ years experience in transforming human systems through the alchemy of relationships, learning and purposeful action. Lisa believes that the seeds of an equitable tomorrow exist in the hopes, knowledge and stories we carry with us each day.

She is ready to help changemakers realize their aspirations by honouring and weaving this wisdom into strategic clarity and alignment. Her approach illuminates shared purpose, empathy and joy to fuel braver action toward our desired tomorrows.

portrait photo of Jillian Witt

Jillian Witt,
Network Gaffer

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Strategic Implementation Lead

Jillian is a community arts lover who has worked with a range of organizations and foundations across Canada to build community and shift philanthropy. Jillian has a Masters of Social Work from the University of Toronto.

Her volunteer time is spent helping grow La Ruche D’Art de NDG, a community project using the arts to build community in Montreal, Quebec. She is also the Community Engagement Lead for The Philanthropist Journal, a journal dedicated to the nonprofit sector in Canada.

portrait photo of Katharine Zywert

Katharine Zywert,
Complexity Pathfinder

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Strategic Implementation Lead

Katharine is dedicated to supporting social change processes that enable equity, health, and environmental regeneration. She knows that systems change work is full of paradox and complexity, and can help you hold these tensions to create greater impact. At Openly, Katharine uses her skills as a researcher, writer, and facilitator to help people make better decisions in contexts of emergence. Katharine is a PhD Candidate at the University of Waterloo, where she studies how to leverage unfolding social-ecological systems transitions to improve human and planetary health.

Katharine has academic qualifications in social innovation (GDip) and medical anthropology (MSc), and is an aspiring medicine gardener.

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We are grateful for our collaboration with Karimah Gheddai, whose talent and creativity allowed us to innovate when photo shoots were impossible.

We hope that these photos offer a glimpse into our personalities and the places we love.