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2019 Council Director election

Prior to OPPI's AGM on October 2, 2019 at the Beanfield Centre in the City of Toronto, members are asked to vote for their preferred slate of Council Director candidates. This webpage provides members with information on those individuals seeking a Council Director position and those who have been appointed and acclaimed. Only Full, Candidate and Retired members can vote and select nominees for Council. 

Notification of the Call for Nominations of Directors was sent to all members by way of the members e-newsletter in February and March 2019 and posted on the OPPI website. Nominations for the election of Directors at the AGM are received in accordance with section 3 of the OPPI General By-Law.

The members seeking Council Director positions were nominated by their peers during this period.  OPPI received eight (8) nominations for five (5) Council Director positions. OPPI is asking members to select five Council Directors from the nominations received. For more information on the Call for Nominations for OPPI Council, please visit our webpage

The election commences on Monday, July 29 and closes four (4) weeks later on Friday, August 23, 2019. Members (Full, Candidate and Retired members only) will be alerted in advance regarding the election voting period and reminders sent via OPPI e-blasts, newsletter and social media posts. 

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Emails from Simply Voting will originate from their vote@simplyvoting.com email address and from one of the following domains: simplyvoting.com or o3.email.simplyvoting.com. They request that members ensure vote@simplyvoting.com is added to your safe senders list to ensure you receive your ballot. 

If members are using their work email addresses, or any addresses using a private domain (ie. not hotmail, yahoo, gmail, etc.), Simply Voting recommends speaking with your IT department to ensure emails from Simply Voting are white-listed and received in your inbox. 

review candidate information

Members are asked to take a few minutes to review candidate information below. OPPI received eight (8) nominations for five (5) Council Director positions. OPPI is asking members to select five Council Directors from the nominations received. This information will also appear on your electronic ballot. If members have any questions, please contact OPPI at info@ontarioplanners.ca

A list of members seeking a Council Director position can be found on the right side of the webpage. Members can click on an individual and be directed to their statement. In addition to these candidates seeking a Council Director position, OPPI's President Elect, Paul Lowes, RPP, is acclaimed and OPPI's Public Interest Representative for OPPI Council, Curry Clifford, is appointed to Council. 
 

President Elect Acclaimed

 Paul Lowes, RPP

Paul Lowes, RPP

President Elect

I am excited to be acclaimed as your new President Elect. I have been a Full Member of OPPI since 1990, and for the last four years I have served as a Director of OPPI and for the last two as Secretary/Treasurer. In my day job, I am a founding principal of SGL Planning & Design, a 22-year-old planning firm based in Toronto but active throughout southern Ontario.

Envisioning OPPI is the Strategic Plan of the Institute. The second direction of the plan is to build RPP as the recognized brand to planners, decision-makers and key stakeholders. I call this "Build the Brand." 2019 is the 25-year anniversary of RPP. We have done a fantastic job in the last 25 years of building the brand amongst planners. But building the brand doesn’t stop with planners, we need to do more. We need to make RPP the recognized brand amongst our elected officials, our clerks and CAO’s and the public. It won’t be easy to build the brand amongst the public who often don’t know what planners do. But a challenge has never stopped planners. Most people recognize what PEng stands for. Think of the advertisements for CPA’s with them jumping out of a helicopter. Those ads have achieved brand recognition for CPA’s. Not that I suggest TV ads, and I am definitely not suggesting that your President Elect jump out of a helicopter, but I am suggesting that it is possible to build brand recognition amongst the public over the next 25 years of RPP. Through the next review of our Strategic Plan I want to work with you, your Council and our OPPI staff to set the footings for building our RPP brand with the public. 

Public Interest Representative Appointee

 Curry Clifford

Curry Clifford

Public Interest Representative for OPPI Council

I much value OPPI’s decision to seek a non-member to serve on the Council. This outside, but informed, perspective is important in building trust and confidence in OPPI.
 
OPPI members should know that I am a non-partisan, balanced, very fortunate Ontarian who has wide knowledge of public expectations across the diversity of Ontario, having lived in and kept contacts and worked professionally for over 35 years alongside planners in Toronto, eastern, central and southwestern Ontario. I’ve also worked over many years with municipalities in northern Ontario, but not lived there. After serving in management leadership roles with MMAH, the Region of Peel, AMCTO and finishing up as CAO for the Municipality of Clarington, I retired to Muskoka, my wife’s family’s community.
 
I am a member of the Gravenhurst Rotary Club, the Bracebridge Chamber of Commerce, the Township of Muskoka Lakes Economic Development Committee, one of the Founders of Muskoka Founders Circle and a Board member of Muskoka Community Futures. I am a registered real estate salesperson, operating under the trade name Life in South Muskoka.
 
I am honoured to serve the public on OPPI’s Council.

Council Director Nominees

Jump to an Individual:


 
 Claire Basinski, RPP

Claire Basinski, RPP

Council Director nominee

The past two years have significantly opened my eyes to the opportunities and challenges associated with serving on OPPI Council. While the work that OPPI has done in the past couple of years has been significant and meaningful, there are still issues, ideas and opportunities that arise over the course of the year which need to be methodically and tactfully addressed.

The confidence of our membership as well as the future of the planning profession are heavily dependent on how we address these issues and the way in which we present ourselves and the organization. There are significant social, environmental and political issues at play in the current planning landscape and the next two years will be an important point for our profession. Our organization needs to reflect our membership – the opinions, interests and priorities of those who we represent.

As a Director on Council, I want to continue to help shape the profession through effective engagement with our membership as well as our partner organizations, continuing to address and support meaningful and respectful involvement and consideration of Indigenous communities through our Indigenous Planning Perspectives Taskforce and continuing to think to the future through the excellent opportunity that is our review of OPPI’s Strategic Plan.

Having now practiced professionally as a planner for over 10 years, I have been able to gather a wide range of experience which I believe strongly impacts and influences my ability and approach to being on Council and the perspectives and values that shape my involvement. As an active member of OPPI through the district leadership teams, I continue to try and understand and improve how we work and collaborative with volunteers at the local level and bring our members the best information and education possible.

My first term on Council has provided me with significant insight into the processes, protocols and structures of OPPI allowing me to understand how we can continue to influence professional practice and create change. Communication and engagement are my passion. My professional and personal experiences allow me to consider and integrate the perspectives of different groups and help individuals come to a well thought out and considerate conclusion. The principles and values of teamwork shape my approach to Council meetings as well as our engagement and involvement of volunteers and our membership. My professional work also focuses on strategic and master planning. With the upcoming review of OPPI’s Strategic Plan I am excited to continue the exceptional work that was undertaken for Inspire OPPI: Vision 2020 to ensure that our organization is setup for long-term success and has a strategy to achieve the goals, objectives and targets that we set for ourselves.
 Calvin Brook, RPP

Calvin Brook, RPP

Council Director nominee

My interest in serving on OPPI Council stems from my belief in planning as the primary profession specifically created to address the rational and just disposition of land. In this period of climate change we have a critical role to play as advocates for sustainable land stewardship. Similarly, we have a leadership role to play in advancing Truth & Reconciliation.
 
As both a Planner and an Architect I’m excited about the role that the place-making professions are embracing in advancing sustainable and creative communities and infrastructure that advances a high-quality of life across the province. However, these opportunities and resources are not available to everyone, especially in remote communities and reserves. I believe OPPI can give voice to the needs of these communities and play a role as advocates to reshape the policies that compound these conditions.
 
I have a keen interest in OPPI's work related to the Indigenous Planning Perspectives Task Force of which I am a member. I am interested in serving on Council to assist in the implementation of recommendations adopted by Council emerging from the Task Force's work. I'm hopeful that OPPI, an important institution working in the province with Canada's largest Indigenous population, can become a national leader in advancing a progressive future for all of Ontario.
 
I have a unique perspective on the profession and its potential that results from a multi-disciplinary career (as a planner/architect/urban designer). At the same time, as co-leader of three offices (Toronto, Thunder Bay and Winnipeg), I have an understanding of the role of planning in a very broad context spanning the worlds of business, government and institutions in communities of all sizes - facing diverse opportunities and challenges. This experience spans from youth work in Attawapiskat to the design of high-density mixed-use communities in urban centres.
 
An important and rewarding focus of my career has been in the area of volunteer work. I served for five years as a member of the City of Toronto’s Design Review Panel. I am presently a Board Member of the Indigenous Place Making Council and the Ontario Crafts Council, and I recently had the honour to serve on OPPI’s Indigenous Planning Perspectives Task Force and would like the opportunity to see that work move to the next phases of implementation. I believe this provides me with a unique lens and an ability to facilitate the partnerships that I believe are required to address such vast challenges as prosperity, sustainability and reconciliation. Land is at the core of all of these challenges and the planning profession has a central role to play in advocacy. We are blessed in Ontario with the means to get things right.
 Tim Chadder, RPP

Tim Chadder, RPP

Council Director nominee

I would like to continue to give back to our profession by serving as a member of Council. I would like to work with Council to provide focus upon a few key areas where planners can benefit our communities. The value of the organization to the membership and the public can be bolstered through an effective demonstration of how planners add value to decision making.
 
The completion of Bill 70 needs to be a cornerstone for OPPI. Its completion would be very appropriate as a part of our 25th anniversary celebrations. The identification of planning as a profession, with recognized legal status, will allow us to establish a clear role that will not be usurped by others. This will provide a clear opportunity to give OPPI the added credibility required to define a space where planners will clearly be in the leadership role as professionals representing the public interest in decisions for sustainable growth. The consistent application of our values and ethics in providing advice to decision makers where we can address issues such as climate change, public health, new technology and their impacts upon communities can benefit our ‘actual’ clients – the public. OPPI Council can, and should, provide the opportunities for our members to be viewed in this positive light. In addition, our internal focus on the implementation of the Strategic Plan and the need for OPPI to undertake our next review can be done with this newly articulated role as a clear guidepost.
 
Planners need to continue our role as facilitators and bring people together in the implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Recommendations. The recently received Report of the Indigenous Planning Perspectives Task Force (June 2019) provides OPPI with a path to enable planners to re-examine how our past practices needs have affected indigenous people and how we can better represent our communities as a whole.
 
I would like to work to improve the understanding of the role of planners and how we have played an important role, for decades, in providing growth that is safe and smart. We need to promote our successful history as we continue to push for inclusive communities and create a better understanding of how to move forward in an era where climate change, public health and adaptation are critical challenges. One of the keynote speakers for the conference this year is Mikael Colville-Andersen who will share his pioneering philosophies about simplifying urban planning and urban cycling, and how cities and towns should be designed instead of engineered. This is the type of role planners need to take – leading discussions. OPPI needs to help with this through our Districts and our events where we can provide the venue for planners to learn, discuss and understand how we can, and should, be continuing our long tradition in promoting sustainable communities for everyone.
 Matthew Cory, RPP

Matthew Cory, RPP

Council Director nominee

OPPI continues to undertake several strategic issues facing the profession. Having volunteered with OPPI on the Planning and Knowledge Exchange Committee for five years and having served on Council for two years I have become versed in strategic and professional practice matters. I feel the vocation to continue in a leadership role in the profession, doing all that I can to ensure our professional practice legislation is passed in the current term of government. OPPI’s initiatives require ongoing work, tending, and buy-in from the membership; I have a passion for this profession and advancing its practice and recognition in Ontario. I believe another term on OPPI Council will be the ideal role for completing the work we are mid-stream on and furthering the interests of Council and the membership. I also have an extensive range of skills and attributes that I think can continue to complement and add diversity to Council. I am committed to advancing OPPI’s new initiatives and am driven to advance the brand of Registered Professional Planner within Ontario and look forward to doing this as a Director of OPPI Council.
 Rob Dowler, RPP

Rob Dowler, RPP

Council Director nominee

As an experienced ADM and corporate director, I would be thrilled to assist OPPI in its mission of advancing professionalism, building the trusted RPP credential and facilitating knowledge exchange among planners.
 
In 2017, after retiring as Assistant Deputy Minister, Policy in the Ontario Cabinet Office, I became an Adjunct Professor in the graduate planning program at UofT and a lecturer in the undergraduate planning program at Ryerson. My 30-year career in planning and related fields has included positions in private consulting, non-profits, a municipality and as an ADM in various ministries in the Ontario Public Service. I have served as a corporate director on various boards including: TSSA, Tarion Home Warranty, ESA and was founding Chair and Interim President of the Ring of Fire Infrastructure Development Corporation. I hold the ICD.D certification from the Institute of Corporate Directors. My volunteer experience includes active involvement with various local charities as well mentoring a number of Indigenous Ontarians.

Over the years I’ve been a keen supporter of OPPI serving as Jury Member and Chair for the OPPI Planning Awards, Program Director for the OPPI/CIP/APA World Planning Conference and providing input into the preparation of various OPPI policy submissions. I would be delighted to help OPPI become even better in the challenging years ahead!
 Andria Leigh, RPP

Andria Leigh, RPP

Council Director nominee

I am seeking an OPPI Director position to continue to serve the profession that has supported me for over 20 years and has provided me numerous volunteer opportunities to advance both the profession and the organization. As a Director, I would like to continue the great work done by my colleagues and past Council Directors in advancing the OPPI mandate, the profession, and its regulations. As a sponsor, mentor, and previously an examiner, one of my focuses as a volunteer has been mentoring new planners; and if elected as a Director I would strive to ensure that OPPI and the profession continues to be relevant for new members. In my over 25 years of progressive public and private sector experiences, I have acquired a diverse range of skills and experiences that would assist me in this exciting and challenging role as a Director. My broad skill set (governance, leadership, collaboration, communications, strategic thinking) would strongly assist me in working with a dynamic Council to continue to advance the OPPI mandate. My work and volunteer experiences, including the Governance and Nominating Committee and currently the Professional Standards and Registration Committee, have provided many opportunities for me to work with a variety of Board/Committee structures that collaboratively advance their mandates. I would welcome the opportunity to continue to serve the profession in this key role as a Council Director and look forward to your support.
 Mike Sullivan, RPP

Mike Sullivan, RPP

Council Director nominee

The OPPI is embarking on a very ambitious direction, which includes developing positions and advocating for emerging issues on some topics that are very important to members. Some of these include: mega issues; role of public participation; role of technology in planning; and the standing of our profession. These topics are each of importance to me and I am very interested in helping to guide implementation of the Strategic Plan in these areas.
 
As a Director of OPPI, it would be my goal to guide the Institute towards stronger, more visible branding of the RPP designation, to develop and clearly present the Institute's perspective on mega issues and to assist our membership in implementing changes on these issues in a meaningful way.
 
Having previously served on Council (2005 - 2009), and in various volunteer capacities with OPPI & CIP over the years, I will bring my experience to the table to ensure that discussion is focused, respectful and to the benefit of all OPPI members. It is also important that Council's decisions are recorded and shared for OPPI members to review and consider.
 
Operating a boutique land use and environmental consulting firm in the Niagara area, I have watched the growth of OPPI over the years and wish to take a more hands-on approach in governance. I will bring this small business experience to the OPPI Council table to ensure Council decisions are well considered.
 
Please vote for Mike Sullivan as Director of OPPI! Thank you in advance for your support!
 Eldon Theodore, RPP

Eldon Theodore, RPP

Council Director nominee

I am a partner with the planning, urban design and landscape architecture firm MHBC, who I have been with for over 17 years. I have a Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Waterloo and a Master of Urban Design Studies from the University of Toronto. My work experience includes a broad range of projects in all community contexts related to development approvals, project management, urban design, master planning, planning policy, visioning exercises and community engagement. My volunteer work includes, but is not limited to, being past Chair of the Community Design Working Group for OPPI, past director for the Congress for the New Urbanism Ontario Chapter, member of Lambda Alpha International and the past chair and current member of the University of Waterloo Planning Alumni of Toronto. I have demonstrated experience working collaboratively with multi-disciplinary groups including my past work on OPPI Council, and I believe my background and experience provides a unique perspective and voice around the table.

I have always felt a personal drive to contribute to the advancement of our profession. From my first volunteer position on the OPPI Toronto District to my current role as a Director on OPPI Council, I choose to volunteer because I believe in giving back for the betterment of our profession as a whole. Given the recent rapid changes in provincial policy, regulation and governance, the current public perception on planning, and our steady move toward self-regulation, I believe that our profession is at a critical juncture where the decisions we make today will have lasting impact on the future of our profession. If elected again, I would want to continue to build on the good work that has occurred to date and find new opportunities that ensure our profession is forward-thinking, stronger and ready for the future.