RCA 2023 Conference Speaker Session Announcement – Fellowship of the Ring: Embracing the Circular Economy

Join us at the RCA Circular Economy Conference, at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise from October 18th to 20th, 2023. Immerse yourself in the theme, “There and Back Again: The Journey to Circularity,” inspired by the epic Lord of the Rings saga. Get ready for three days of captivating insights and engaging discussions on the circular economy!

Let’s explore the featured speaker session, titled “Fellowship of the Ring: Embracing the Circular Economy.” The circular economy holds significance in various industries, such as insurance and fashion, where sustainability goals are molded by the environmental impacts of those sectors. Acquire invaluable insights from a panel of industry experts on effectively integrating the principles of the circular economy into a range of industries.

Session Moderator: Isabelle Faucher (Carton Council)

  • Sustainability in the Insurance Industry:
    • Karen Flamand – Cooperators Group Limited
    • Steve Nitschke – Cooperators Group Limited
    • Ross Huartt  – MBC Group / EcoClaim
    • Jodi Scarlett – EcoClaim
  • Sustainability in the Fashion Industry:
    • Andréanne Dandeneau – Anne Mulaire Designs
    • Jodi Benson – Anne Mulaire Designs
  • Repair for Good and Goodwill’s Landfill Reuse Pilot
    • Mortimer Capriles – Goodwill Industries of Alberta

Full speaker bios for this session can be found below. Stay tuned for updates on speakers for our other sessions!

Secure your registration now and explore sponsorship options or host a tradeshow exhibit during the event. Visit www.conference.recycle.ab.ca for the program and more details – Early-bird pricing ends on September 8th, 2023! For any further inquiries, please contact the RCA at 403-843-6563 or email us at info@recycle.ab.ca.

Karen Flamand – Cooperators Group Limited

Karen Flamand has been with the Co-operators Group Limited since 2003 and has held various positions within the claims organization. Currently, she is the Associate Vice President for Claims Shared Services and the Initiative Lead for the Resiliency & Sustainability Program across the enterprise. In her career with Co-operators, she has led the claims response to large disasters such as the 2011 Slave Lake Wildfire, 2013 Southern Alberta Flood, and 2016 Fort McMurray Wildfire. She graduated in September 2021 with a Masters in Management, Co-operatives and Credit Unions, and found a passion for the circular economy and democratic governance, which she brought back to her work. As the Initiative Lead for the Resiliency and Sustainability Program, she is leading a project to embed the circular economy within Co-operators products and services.

Steve Nitschke – Cooperators Group Limited

Steve Nitschke has worked with the Co-operators since 2002, primarily working in the property claims operations. He is currently a senior manager and a lead within the Resiliency & Sustainability program. The program is focused on integrating sustainability, resiliency, and circular economy into our core business, embedding the principles into our products and services. Within the program, Steve is responsible for the identification of emerging sustainable restoration practices, adoption of sustainable restoration practices and creating opportunities to divert waste within the claims process. Steve is a graduate of Mount Royal in Calgary, and completed his FCIP in 2022, receiving both national and provincial awards.

Ross Huartt – MBC Group / EcoClaim

Ross Huartt is the Chair of EcoClaim and the President and Chief Executive Officer of MBC Group. He is an experienced and dynamic leader, leveraging his nearly 20 years of experience and driven by a desire to innovate to disrupt traditional engineering processes. His strategic vision and leadership has grown MBC Group from a single offering appraisal firm to a multi-disciplinary services powerhouse. Ross is an active member of the YPO, the Business Council of Alberta, frequently collaborating with public & private partners. He has been a featured speaker at events worldwide and has received numerous awards and accolades.

Jodi Scarlett – EcoClaim

Jodi Scarlett, CEO of EcoClaim, has an impressive background including a B.Comm and MBA from the University of Calgary. She is renowned for her insight into business leadership, insurance, and the restoration industry in Canada. During her two-decade-long ownership and operation of a restoration contracting business, Scarlett earned widespread recognition. Her accolades include being named one of the W100 Top Female Entrepreneurs in Canada by Profit, Canadian Business, and Chatelaine magazine for three consecutive years, Alberta Venture’s Fast Growth 50, and Chase Morgan’s Women 2 Watch in 2021. Passionate about sustainability and team-building, Scarlett is poised to lead EcoClaim into a bright future.

Andréanne Dandeneau – Anne Mulaire Designs

Andréanne (Anne) Mulaire Dandeneau was born in St. Boniface, Winnipeg, Manitoba—homeland of the Red River Métis Nation. Anne was raised to embrace her Anishinaabe/French Métis heritage, respect all people, and honour the planet we share. Anne is the CEO and lead fashion designer at Anne Mulaire. Her experience in sustainable fashion stretches well over 20 years and she is a leader within the Manitoba textile industry. Andréanne’s speciality lies in natural fabrics and knitwear for all women. She has intensive knowledge in pattern making, jersey knits, zero-waste design, tailoring, and couture. She has been featured in many fashion magazines across North America including Fashion Magazine, Elle Canada/US, Good Housekeeping, Supply Chain Manitoba, APTN, CBC, Air Canada Enroute, The Globe and Mail and many others. Anne has the capacity to usher in the next era of sustainability in the Canadian fashion industry. Anne sits on the board at St. Bonfice Chambers of Commerce and is part of the planning committee for the Manitoahbee Festival.

Jodi Benson – Anne Mulaire Designs

Jodi has been with Anne Mulaire since 2020 and holds the position of CVO/Head of Sustainability. She holds a master’s degree in Social Work and a degree in Environmental Science. She has over 22 years of experience working with hospice and end-of-life care. Through her experience, she brings a unique set of skills, experience, and insights to developing truly circular systems that are good for the planet and good for people. Her extensive background in research and development has positioned her well at Anne Mulaire where she leads the infrastructure for circular manufacturing and textile development. Mrs. Benson also leads a multi-disciplinary research project on the degradation of Anne Mulaire textiles at the University of Manitoba. She is a true advocate of the environment and enjoys mountaineering and ice climbing when she is not developing circular systems.

Mortimer Capriles – Goodwill Industries of Alberta

Mortimer Capriles is the Director of Sustainability and Innovation at Goodwill Industries of Alberta since January 2018. His responsibility includes leadership of all sustainability projects, including sustainability reporting and stakeholder engagement.

Capriles is also responsible for the Goodwill Impact Centres in Edmonton and Calgary. The Goodwill Impact Centre is an amazing concept where millions and millions of items are diverted from local landfills every year while providing training and employment opportunities to persons with disabilities in Alberta.

In his previous role as the Regional Director of Sustainability at Fairmont Hotels and Resorts, his responsibilities included leadership of the sustainability program for the four resort properties that form Fairmont’s Canadian Western Mountain Region.

Capriles holds an Executive MBA, a Bachelor’s degree in Geography, and several postgraduate certificates related to sustainability, the circular economy, environmental planning and leadership. He also holds the Environmental Professional Certification awarded by Eco Canada and the Global Sustainability Practitioner certification (CSR-P).

Capriles is fully committed to diverting as much as possible from the landfill and increasing community awareness about the positive environmental impact of reusing and shopping second-hand. As a result, he volunteers at the Emerald Foundation since 2018 to support the non-profit efforts to showcase the most relevant environmental achievements in Alberta, setting an example for all to follow.