QUEST is a national non-government organization that works to accelerate the adoption of efficient and integrated community-scale energy systems in Canada by informing, inspiring, and connecting decision-makers. The organization commissions research, communicates best practices, convenes government, utility, and private-sector leaders, and works directly with local authorities to implement on-the-ground solutions. QUEST recognizes communities that have embraced these principles by referring to them as Smart Energy Communities.
Canada is a nation of Smart Energy Communities.
To accelerate the adoption of efficient and integrated community-scale energy systems in Canada by informing, inspiring, and connecting decision-makers.
Objective: Independent, non-partisan and committed to the public interest.
Informative: Trusted, credible and balanced information on Smart Energy Communities.
Collaborative: Respectful and inclusive of the QUEST network.
Innovative: Inspiring Smart Energy Communities policy and transformation.
Our Smart Energy Impact
Look at what we have achieved together over the past year!
As a non-profit, we could not do this important work without the support of you – our network! We hope you will consider getting involved so that we can continue to accelerate Smart Energy Communities together.
EQUAL BY 30
Equal by 30 is a public commitment by both public and private sector organizations to work towards equal pay, equal leadership and equal opportunities for women in the clean energy sector by 2030. QUEST’s commitments to being Equal by 30 are outlined in the following three goals:
our challenge to the sector
GOAL – Equal Pay
Establish and internally identify, pay scales for all staff positions and levels.
QUEST has established pay scales for all staff positions and levels and publishes salary ranges on all job postings.
GOAL – Equal Leadership
50% of leadership roles held by women.
QUEST is not only led by a woman, but the Senior Management team is made up of 80% women as of April 2020.
GOAL – Equal Opportunities
Creation of policies to support flexible work hours, telecommuting, and working part-time.
QUEST has adopted a cloud-based coordination and management approach that operates across Canada. We also encourage and support a flexible work environment.
Meet the Team
Kareema Batal - M.Sc., B.Sc.
Based in Edmonton, Alberta
“In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing. The worst thing you can do is nothing.” – Theodore Roosevelt
Senior Lead, Project and Stakeholder Relations
Based in Wolfville, Nova Scotia
Prior to joining QUEST, Kareema spent the last three years pursuing her MSc. in Human Ecology at the University of Alberta focusing her studies on the application of participatory engagement methods and social innovation to enhancing community development. Her masters’ research investigated the facilitators and barriers to the adoption of socially conscious business practices among local business owners in Edmonton’s core urban neighbourhoods. Kareema’s passion is investigating how business practices with a social and environmental dimension can be an asset to the development of sustainable urban communities. In addition to her studies, Kareema is a social entrepreneur, using her skills and experiences as a Food Scientist to create and market value-added food products in Alberta that are made with sustainable materials and packaging.
Since 2005, Omar has been working with communities across Canada and the world to identify and meet their sustainability, emissions reduction, and energy needs. As Senior Lead, Project and Stakeholder Relations, Omar chairs the Municipal Energy and Buildings Working Groups, and manages and develops QUEST’s projects and partnerships in Nova Scotia. In recent years he has worked as a project manager, and transportation and energy planner. Omar holds a BA (1999) from McGill University and a LLB (2005) from the University of British Columbia.
Laura joined the QUEST team in April 2020 to oversee QUEST’s projects, research and advisory services. She brings close to a decade of experience in the clean energy sector working with municipalities, Indigenous communities, utilities and other partners to develop and successfully implement a variety of energy efficiency programs across Canada. Prior to joining QUEST, Laura worked as Senior Director of Conservation Programs at Ecofitt. During this time, she was instrumental in the successful delivery of several initiatives, including the Residential Direct Install and Energy Review program – one of Canada’s largest direct installation programs – and the launch of the Remote First Nations Energy Efficiency Pilot program. Both of these programs were initiated by and funded through the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) in Ontario. As the Director of Energy Programs for Clean Foundation, Laura was involved in piloting and overseeing a diversity of projects with stakeholders like Efficiency Nova Scotia, Nova Scotia Power, Natural Resources Canada, the Town of Bridgewater and We’koqma’q First Nation. Laura has deep roots in the non-profit sector, beginning with her role as Coordinator for the Nelson Food Cupboard (now Nelson Community Food Centre) in 2009. Laura holds a Master of Natural Resources and Environmental Studies, specializing in local food systems, from the University of Northern British Columbia and a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and Environmental Sciences from McGill University.
Based in Ottawa, Ontario
“Don’t miss out on something that could be great because it also could be difficult”~ unknown
Director, Stakeholder Relations
Based in Guelph, Ontario
Tonja Leach became Executive Director of QUEST on October 18, 2019, having been with QUEST since its inception in 2007 in a number of roles of increasing responsibility. She has been instrumental in establishing QUEST’s extensive national network and ensuring that QUEST is known as the Canadian organization that accelerates the adoption of efficient and integrated community-scale energy systems in Canada by informing, inspiring, and connecting decision-makers.
Having spent the past 15 years in the downstream energy industry, Tonja is highly regarded as a strategic thinker and a doer with a passion for finding solutions to complex energy issues at the local level. Most recently, having been the Interim Executive Director and prior to that the Managing Director, Operations and Services, Tonja has taken a leading role in the operations of the organization, developing and implementing the infrastructure, systems and human resources required for QUEST to grow and support the Smart Energy Communities marketplace.
Prior to QUEST, Tonja worked for the Canadian Gas Association in communications since 2003. During that time Tonja acted as the secretariat for a coalition of 19 energy industry associations known as the Energy Dialogue Group, who came together to encourage the establishment of a national energy framework for Canada.
As Senior Lead for Central Canada (ON & QC), Eric provides industry insights and direct support to QUEST’s Community Energy Planning Implementation Network and Distributed Energy working groups, and he engages policymakers on issues that are important to QUEST Subscribers in Ontario and across Canada. Eric brings comprehensive expertise through over nine years in Ontario’s energy sector, in the areas of research & development, conservation, regulatory affairs, stakeholder relations, and communications across both the Independent Electricity System Operator and the former Ontario Power Authority. A passionate facilitator, he has conducted customized facilitated sessions with executives, senior managers, and staff on interdisciplinary topics such as customer service excellence, policy research priorities, risk management, and strategic planning. Eric holds a bilingual Master of Public and International Affairs, specializing in energy and environmental policy, from Glendon College (York University), and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Studies and International Studies from Queen’s University.
Since 1998, Eddie Oldfield coordinated initiatives focused on local sustainability, GHG emissions reduction, clean energy and efficiency, transportation/fleets, climate adaptation and resilience planning. Eddie Chairs the QUEST NB-PEI Caucus, working to advance Smart Energy Communities, and is Senior Lead, Projects and Advisory Services, QUEST. In this role, he helps deliver regional and national projects and supports FCM Partners for Climate Protection members in Atlantic Canada. Eddie also co-chairs the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC)’s Energy and Utilities working group and is a Charter member of the OGC Smart Cities working group. He led development of innovative web-based map services & distributed spatial data infrastructure, to support decision making including for a cross-border pandemic exercise in 2007. He is a board member of the Canadian Risk and Hazards Network, and participated in the Resilient Communities Working Group of the National Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction. Eddie holds a BA (2008), with Interdisciplinary Honours (Sociology, Political Science, Environment, Science & Technology) from St. Thomas University, and owns and operates Spatial Quest based in Fredericton NB.
Lead, Stakeholder Relations
Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia
“Fill your life with adventures, not things. Have stories to tell not stuff to show.” ~ Anonymous
Cheryl Ratchford - MPA
Director, Communications & Marketing
Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia
“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” ~ Albert Einstein
As Coordinator for Research and Business Development, Anna supports a variety of activities across QUEST. Prior to joining QUEST, Anna spent two years in northern Germany pursuing her MSc. in Sustainability, Society, and the Environment at Christian-Albrecht University of Kiel. Her masters’ thesis investigated the city of Kiel and looked at its opportunities for becoming a circular city. In addition to her studies, Anna worked as a research assistant with community energy projects across the Baltic Sea Region. Prior to Anna’s time abroad she obtained an international Bachelor of Business Administration (2016) from Memorial University of Newfoundland.
Cheryl is a communications, marketing and policy professional with more than a decade of experience from government, stakeholder and political perspectives in the energy sector. She oversees the development, management, and delivery of QUEST’s marketing and communications. Her expertise includes communications and marketing, stakeholder engagement, project and event management, conference and event planning, network and partnership building, and public policy and research. Cheryl holds a Bachelor of Political Science and History from Saint Thomas University (2004) and a Master of Public Administration (2008) from Dalhousie University.
Eric is a sustainability and environmental professional with experience in planning and regulatory compliance in the energy sector, as well as with design and implementation of several renewable and energy efficiency projects throughout various sectors in Alberta. As Senior Lead, Community Resilience, Eric will be leading projects on community climate resilience and building resilient energy infrastructure in Alberta. Eric holds a Master of Science in Sustainable Energy Development and a Bachelor of Environmental Science from the University of Calgary.
Ericka Wicks - MBA, CEM, EP
Based in Montréal, Québec
“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.” ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Ericka became Managing Director of QUEST in 2020 and prior to that was QUEST’s Director of Projects & Advisory Services. Ericka was successful in growing Projects & Advisory Services department revenues by 138% over 2 years while diversifying revenue sources, leading numerous organizational effectiveness initiatives, and creating and implementing a variety of tools and supports to ensure QUEST can achieve its vision of Canada as a nation of Smart Energy Communities. As Managing Director, Ericka oversees the alignment and strategic growth of all of QUEST’s operational areas to support the acceleration of Smart Energy Communities in Canada, and is responsible for financial, human resource, and performance management of the organization.
Prior to joining QUEST, Ericka held roles at various non-profits including Efficiency Nova Scotia and the Colchester Regional Development Association, and has also held roles in local and provincial governments. Ericka has extensive experience working with governments at all levels, and the private and non-profit sectors. Her areas of expertise include demand-side management, program and project management and delivery, non-profit organization management, and economic development. Ericka is a Certified Energy Manager (CEM) with the Association of Energy Engineers, and a Certified Environmental Professional (EP) with ECO Canada. Ericka holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Saint Mary’s University and a Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree in Environmental Science from Dalhousie University
Board of Directors
Dale Beugin is the Vice President of Research and Analysis at the Canadian Institute for Climate Choices. An expert in environmental economics, policy and technical communications, he now leads the Institute’s work in developing rigorous analysis and practical climate policy advice for governments across the country. Dale was former Executive Director and Research Director of Canada’s Ecofiscal Commission, and has previously worked as an independent consultant. Notably, he worked with the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy as policy advisor and has provided analysis and advice to governments and organizations across Canada and internationally. He holds a Masters Degree in resource and environmental management with a specialization in energy-economy modelling, and an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering.
Ron Clark is a partner at Aird & Berlis LLP law firm based in Toronto, Ontario. Specializing in intersections amongst corporate, commercial, energy and municipal law, he has guided numerous clients through the historical and institutional development of the energy market in Ontario. His corporate and commercial practice includes advising corporations, financial institutions, municipalities and individuals on commercial agreements, asset and share purchase transactions, mergers and acquisitions, private placements and secured lending transactions. The energy side of his practice involves guiding clients through transactions, as well as counselling stakeholder groups, retailers, distributors and generators on legislative and policy matters relating to electricity markets. Ron is deeply interested in the intersection of law and public policy, and enjoys meeting the unique challenges of the evolving energy market.
Ron has a background in public international law and previously served as a diplomat with the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade in Ottawa and Brussels. He is listed as a “Leading Lawyer” in Energy: Power by The Legal 500 Canada and in The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory in the area of Energy (Electricity). He was also recommended by Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business as a top practitioner in Energy, Power (Transactional) (Canada), and is recognized by Who’s Who Legal: Government Contracts. He has served as an Instructor of the Professional Master of Laws program in Energy and Infrastructure Law at Osgoode Hall Law School. Ron holds a BA in Political Science from Carleton University, a LL.B. from Osgood Hall Law School and a LL.M. from New York University.
Chair of the Board
Mr. Cleland is a private consultant with extensive experience in energy and environment policy.
Mr. Cleland was Former President and CEO of the Canadian Gas Association (CGA), as well as Senior Vice President of Government Affairs for the Canadian Electricity Association (CEA). Before joining CEA, he was Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM), Energy Sector in the Department of Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) and prior to that, Director General of the Energy Policy Branch. From 1987 to 1990, he was Assistant Director, Resource Policy Division in the Department of Finance.
Before joining the federal government in 1987, Mr. Cleland worked in Nova Scotia where he was a principal in the firm of Cleland, Dunsmuir Consulting Ltd. At that time, he was also a lecturer in business/government relations at the school of Public Administration at Dalhousie University and academic editor of Plan Canada, the journal of the Canadian Institute of Planners. From 1982 to 1985, he was Associate Director of the Centre for Development Projects at Dalhousie University where he was responsible for various management training projects in Zimbabwe and the countries of the Commonwealth Caribbean. Prior to joining Dalhousie University, he occupied a number of positions at the Nova Scotia Departments of Development and Municipal Affairs.
Mr. Cleland was born in Quesnel, British Columbia, and educated at the University of British Columbia (BA in political science 1972) and Queens (MPL urban and regional planning 1974).
Dr. Karen Farbridge
Vice Chair of the Board
Karen Farbridge is President & Urban Connector of Karen Farbridge & Associates where she works with business, governments and organizations to build healthy and prosperous communities.
She is well-connected in the community energy sector in Canada, and has over 25 years of experience leading community innovation. Karen has a diverse background managing complex multi-stakeholder environments to enable change. Her experience includes 17 years in municipal politics, 11 of which were as the mayor of Guelph, Ontario where she gained a reputation for sustainability leadership. She advises federal, provincial and municipal policy makers and industry leaders on building sustainable and resilient communities, with an emphasis on community energy.
Karen is a thoughtful change agent who effectively challenges status quo thinking to encourage new conversations and inspire innovation. In addition to QUEST, she currently serves as the Chair of the Board for Meridian Credit Union and motusbank as well as on the Board of Silence. She is also a member of the Sustainable Energy Initiative (SEI) at York University where she is adjunct faculty, and a partner with the Community Energy Knowledge and Action Partnership (CEKAP).
Karen is a respected speaker who has delivered hundreds of talks both locally and internationally on matters of current urban interest, including sustainability, engagement and community energy. She has a doctorate from the University of Guelph and a Chartered Directors designation from McMaster University.
Hon. Marty Klyne was sworn into the Senate of Canada on September 27, 2018. Prior to the Senate he served several organizations in the following capacities: Publisher / CEO of Saskatchewan’s two major daily newspapers, the Saskatoon StarPhoenix and Regina Leader-Post; President and CEO of the Saskatchewan Gaming Corporation; EVP, MAACO Systems Canada; COO, Regina’s Economic Development Authority; CEO, Sasknative Economic Development Corporation; Managing Partner, Royal Trust Corporation of Canada (Regina); and, Account Manager, Mercantile Bank of Canada (Regina).
Marty currently serves on the FHQ Development Ltd. Board of Directors and has served on numerous other boards and councils including: Vice-Chair of the SaskPower Board; Chairperson of the National Indigenous Economic Development Board; Economic Development Regina Board; Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce Labour Market Council; Globe Theatre Regina Board; Regina Palliative Care Board; the Mackenzie Art Gallery Board; and, Ignite Adult Learning Corporation Foundation Board. He was also President of Grey Cup 2003, “Flat-Out in Saskatchewan.”
Over the years Marty has been the recipient of multiple awards and recognition including the University of Regina Alumni Award for Distinguished Professional Achievement, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, Business Hall of Fame Inductee – Junior Achievement, Southern Saskatchewan, Saskatchewan, Men of Influence – Saskatchewan Business Magazine, and the Saskatchewan Centennial Medal.
Hon. Marty Klyne graduated With Distinction from the University of Regina, B.Admin., Finance Major and has achieved a Pro.Dir™ designation from the Johnson-Shoyoma Graduate School of Public Policy and Brown Governance Inc.
Chair of the Governance Committee
Karen Lockridge is Director of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Investing at Canada Post Corporation (CPC) Pension Plan. Named one of Canada’s Clean 50 leaders in the field of sustainable capitalism in 2019, she is responsible for developing and implementing the CPC Pension Plan’s ESG investment strategy and risk management framework.
Prior to joining Canada Post, Karen was a member of Mercer’s global Responsible Investment team. There she developed “Investing in a Time of Climate Change – The Sequel” (2019) a research report, and co-authored “Building a Bridge to Sustainable Infrastructure” (2016) and “Crossing the Bridge to Sustainable Infrastructure Investing” (2017) during a 25-year long career with Mercer.
Karen has held a variety of leadership roles in defined benefit risk management, strategy execution, knowledge management, and operations. In addition to her time at Mercer, she spent 18 months as Director, Pension and Benefits at BMO Financial Group. Karen was also a member of the Government of Canada’s Expert Panel on Climate Change Adaptation and Resilience Results (2017/18).
Karen graduated from the University of Alberta with an Honours Bachelor of Science in Applied Mathematics in 1990. She is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries and the Canadian Institute of Actuaries.
Morgan McDonald works on high performance buildings and process innovation with Ledcor Construction. He leads Ledcor Renew, which supports commercial and institutional building owners in understanding the financial and technical feasibility of high performance projects for both new construction and retrofit. He also heads up Ledcor Construction’s Innovation Lab. Morgan has a background in renewable energy, carbon finance, and sustainability education. In addition to QUEST, he also volunteers with Living Future Vancouver and the Canada Green Building Council. Morgan has a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Queen’s University.
Jess Nieukerk is Vice President of Investor Relations and Corporate at AltaGas Canada Inc. (ACI). Prior to ACI, Mr. Nieukerk spent 10 years working in capital markets where he led investor relations for two multi-billion dollar companies, one of which was dual listed in Canada and the United States. He was a Director on the Canadian Investor Relations Institute (CIRI), Alberta Chapter Board, for six years and served as both Treasurer and Chair. He also served on the CIRI National Board for two years from 2015 to 2016.
Mr. Nieukerk has almost 20 years of experience working in the energy industry in progressively senior roles in commercial management, corporate development, communications and investor relations.
Chair, Audit & Finance Committee
Dr. Shahrzad Rahbar is President of the Industrial Gas Users Association (IGUA). Dr. Rahbar brings 20 years of progressively senior experience from the gas industry.
Prior to joining IGUA, she served as Senior Vice-President with the Canadian Gas Association for over a decade, and has been an active contributor to the development of energy, technology and regulatory policy in Canada. Dr. Rahbar served on the Executive Committee of the International Gas Union and on the Board of Natural Gas Technology Centre as Vice-Chair. She is also founding director of QUEST and a director on Eastern Breeze, a community-based art initiative.
Dr. Shahrzad Rahbar has a PhD in mechanical engineering from the UK and two patents to her name.
Geoff Wright is the Vice President of Market Research at Brookfield Renewable where he contributes to global market and commercial strategies for renewable and distributed generation businesses at the utility scale. In this role, Geoff has been actively involved in underwriting multi-billion dollar transactions in numerous countries. Geoff is keenly interested in understanding how local energy systems need to evolve in the face of an increasingly carbon constrained world and finding cost-effective solutions to enable this transition.
QUEST Senior Associates are independent practitioners committed to the success of the organization and collaborate to deliver QUEST initiatives. Senior Associates have specialized knowledge and expertise, and contribute to the development of Smart Energy Communities by advancing innovative practices and projects, delivering support services, and participating in broader knowledge exchange and mentoring.
Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia
Bruce Cameron is the Principal Consultant and Founder of Envigour Policy Consulting Inc. Bruce is a long-time leader in energy policy development. From 1999 to 2016 he was with the Nova Scotia Department of Energy (including its precursor the NS Petroleum Directorate), leading the development of energy policies, strategies, plans, programs and regulatory/legislative initiatives. Prior to his retirement in 2016, he was Executive Director, Electricity, Renewables, and Efficiency. From 2014-2015, he led the development of the Province’s electricity plan, which emphasized the importance of energy data collection and management as part of an energy innovation agenda. From 2009-2016 he was a leader in regional energy collaboration (Atlantic Energy Gateway). He retired from the Province of NS in 2016 and founded Envigour Policy Consulting Inc.
Bruce works with QUEST as a Senior Advisor and Consultant on a number of projects including proposal development and policy support to the QUEST Nova Scotia Caucus.
To learn more about Envigour Policy Consulting Inc. visit http://www.envigour.ca/
Rebecca Fiissel Schaefer
Rebecca Fiissel Schaefer is a leader in the energy efficiency industry in Canada. With almost 20 years of experience, Rebecca has a depth of experience in leading teams to research, design and deliver on climate change policy and DSM plans from coast-to-coast.
For the first decade of her career, Rebecca worked within the public service to forward environmental initiatives and make a difference. She was instrumental in designing and launching some of the first ever residential energy efficiency programs in Saskatchewan and Alberta. More recently, Rebecca has been spearheading corporate strategic growth for industry leaders in the energy efficiency implementation space in Canada. During this time, Rebecca has gained perspective from outside of government and been honoured to support and advise government agencies and utilities across the country on their respective DSM plans and program portfolios.
In 2020, Rebecca founded RFS Energy Consulting to apply her experience and knowledge to push climate change policy, research and planning into action across Canada.
A mission driven, results-oriented professional passionate about energy efficiency, climate change policy and her kids. Rebecca believes that individuals can make a difference and hopeful to support in some small way through volunteer roles in her community – including Acting Chair of the Board of Directors for the Alberta Energy Efficiency Alliance (AEEA); Acting Chair for the Climate Change Innovation Fund Executive Advisory Committee for the City of Calgary; and Brownie Leader for Girl Guides of Canada.
Rebecca holds a Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Geography and Geology, as well as a master’s degree in Public Administration, and Public Management (MPA) from the University of Regina.
Rob Kerr is currently an independent consultant, based in Guelph, Ontario, providing community energy services. Rob has over 35 years of experience in many facets of the transitioning energy market with a focus on policy development and implementation of energy and climate change projects/programs in the municipal and community space.
Mr. Kerr’s work experience has been a balance between the private and public sector, having worked with the cities of Guelph and Mississauga, Honeywell, Hydro Quebec, Toronto Hydro Energy Services Inc., and Energy Advantage. Rob has held senior positions at ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability providing policy and program support to cities around the world committed to climate mitigation and adaptation activities. He has developed expertise in managing inter-governmental relationships – from his advocacy work at the global level (starting with the UN Climate Conference in Kyoto, Japan in 1997) – to ongoing advisory relationships with the Canadian federal and provincial governments as well as the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.
Rob works with QUEST as a Senior Associate to further the development of Smart Energy Communities and the implementation of Community Energy Planning through policy support.
Based in Toronto, Ontario
To his own astonishment, Richard has now been working on energy and climate policies and technology for nearly 15 years with a variety of public, private and non-profit organizations and has facilitated and spoken at dozens of workshops and events across Canada.
Richard provides customized energy and carbon policy, strategy and communications expertise to corporate, utility and government clients under his consulting firm, Laszlo Energy Services.
As a Senior Associate at QUEST, Richard Chairs the Ontario CHP Consortium, Alberta CHP Working Group, and National District Energy Network, representing hundreds of energy leaders from over 200 organizations committed to moving combined heat and power and district energy policies and projects forward.
Richard’s research and advocacy work with QUEST includes Resilient Pipes and Wires, examining energy distributor actions and government policies in response to extreme weather events and Getting to Implementation in Canada! an initiative aimed at helping communities implement their Community Energy Plans.
Richard is the proud author of Pollution Probe’s first Primer on Energy Systems in Canada, and contributed to the development of the Ontario’s Renewable Energy Approval under the Green Energy and Green Economy Act.
To learn more about Laszlo Energy Services, visit www.laszloenergy.com
Based in Toronto, Ontario
Michael Lee is a sustainability professional and community energy planning expert with nearly a decade of experience working with communities across Canada. Michael’s related areas of interest include strategic planning, community engagement, municipal finance and governance, data and analysis, and land use planning.
Michael’s work with QUEST has included projects and research related to effective implementation and collaboration for community energy planning, policy and regulation, such as the Smart Energy Communities Benchmark and Getting to Implementation in Canada initiatives. Michael also previously chaired QUEST’s District Energy Network and Ontario Community Energy Planning Implementation Network.
Michael holds a Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Biology from McMaster University and a Master of Planning (MPl) in Urban Development from Ryerson University.
Based in Toronto, Ontario
Andreea Lupascu is a Partner and Co-Founder of Sapling Financial Consultants Inc. Andreea is a finance and consulting professional with a specialization in financial modelling, forecasting and data analytics. Andreea’s work experience in the electricity space is focusing on developing Energy As A Service financial models, used to secure financing and analyze customer savings for microgrids projects across North America, evaluating electricity and gas pricing tariffs, DER programs, and regulatory requirements for various electricity markets in Canada and the US, as well as auditing and enhancing financial models developed by various energy developers and distributors in the public and private sector.
Sapling Financial Consultants Inc. is a consulting firm focusing on financial modelling and data analytics. In the electricity space, the goal of our practice and our philosophy is to come up with creative finance solutions that assist our clients to price projects sustainably while fully reflecting the capabilities of the technical solution and all the potential costs and risks and regulations related to the project, while also providing a solid financial picture that makes it appealing to an investor.
Andreea Lupascu holds a Bachelor of Science (BSc) from Utrecht University, and a PhD in Condensed Matter Physics from University of Toronto.
Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia
Motivated by the climate emergency, Emma has been working in Nova Scotia’s energy sector for nearly a decade, specifically in the areas of energy efficiency and deep energy retrofits. Emma has effectively intervened in provincial utility hearings to ensure increasing ambition of demand-side management programs. She ran the Climate Jobs Roundtable, a series of events that focused on job creation and transitioning the energy economy. As the Nova Scotia lead for the international project Smarter Energy Communities in Northern and Arctic Regions of Europe, Emma facilitated knowledge transfer between communities in Canada and Europe who were seeking to reduce their carbon footprint through smarter energy use. Currently, Emma is the Director of Communications and Atlantic Organizer for the Climate Emergency Unit, a project of the David Suzuki Institute. Emma is also one of the founders and co-directors of the ReCover Initiative, a deep energy retrofit solution that responds to the climate crisis at the speed and scale necessary to meet our greenhouse gas targets.
Emma has a certificate in Building Science and Net Zero Building Design from Yestermorrow Design/Building School in Vermont. In 2012, she graduated from the University of King’s College with the University Medal in Environment, Sustainability and Society (ESS), and combined honours in ESS and International Development Studies. She holds her levels 1 and 2 in Co-Resolve, Deep Democracy Facilitation.
Alan Rebane is an emergency management subject matter expert with specialized knowledge and experience with all-hazards risk assessment methodologies, tools, and datasets required to assess potential impacts to communities and organizations. Alan has over 15 years of risk and asset management experience working with government and private sector clients. His educational background includes a B.Sc. in Geography and Environmental Science, a Technical GIS Application Specialist Certificate and a Master’s degree in Disaster and Emergency Management. Alan’s work is dedicated to helping communities and organizations become more resilient.
Alan’s Emergency Management Business Practice provides consulting services and solutions to public and private sector clients including government, infrastructure owner/operator, commercial and industrial organizations. Services provided include all hazard risk and resiliency assessments, emergency management planning (mitigation, prevention, response and recovery phases), business continuity planning, physical and cyber security threat assessments; all of these services which are critical to increasing the resiliency of our communities and nation. His risk-informed approach considers that the risks are changing in the face of climate change and considers all aspects including people, the built environment, the natural environment and the economy and is tailored to the appropriate scale from structure level to country level and all levels between.
Alan Rebane has joined QUEST as a Senior Associate offering expertise in community resilience and emergency management planning.
Based in Fredericton, New Brunswick
Integrated Planning has always been of interest to Daniel Savard. Energy efficiency and its integration in development projects are facilitated through integrated planning. Throughout his career, Daniel worked in research and development in planning with the Province of New Brunswick, and with his own firm Decodesign. He developed the balanced weighted IRM concept, the Sustainable Community Design (SCD) Approach, and he oversaw planning innovations and administration of the Community Planning Act, holding temporarily the positions of Senior Planner and Director of planning for the Province of New Brunswick.
Daniel holds a Master’s Degree of Urban Planning from McGill University, and an Master’s of Business Administration from UNB. He coordinated the implementation of the first SCD subdivision project in Canada at ‘Le Village en haut du Ruisseau’ (Dieppe NB), which received national and international awards and recognitions. His work with the SCD Approach was recognized in 2014 with an international Visionary Award. Daniel was one of the founding members of the Sustainable Communities Partnership in New Brunswick.
QUEST objectives and the SCD Approach fit very well together with mutual benefits for communities and sustainable developments. Daniel is proud to be a Senior Associate with QUEST.
To learn more about Decodesign: http://www.decodesignds.ca
If you are interested in making Canada and our communities more energy-smart, check out our current vacancies below.
QUEST is an equal opportunity employer which has been operating since 2007. We welcome diversity and inclusion in the workplace and encourage applications from qualified individuals in traditionally marginalized groups such as racialized people, Indigenous people, LGBTQIA2S+ people, and persons with disabilities to apply. We encourage applicants to self-identify in their cover letter or application if they are a member of a marginalized community. QUEST is committed to and working toward developing inclusive, barrier-free selection processes and work environments. If you are contacted to be considered for a job opportunity, advise the human resources representative of accommodation measures which must be taken to enable you to be assessed in a fair and equitable manner. Information relating to these measures will be addressed confidentially.
Benefits of Working at QUEST
You’ll work with a team of fun and passionate people interested in making a positive impact. Here are some other benefits of working here:
- Flexible working arrangements and telecommuting
- Competitive salary
- Health and dental benefits
- Paid vacation time
- Training and development budget to support your professional goals
Senior Lead, Projects & Research
We are seeking a full-time Senior Lead, Projects & Research. The ideal candidate has a background in the energy sector; demonstrated experience working collaboratively with Indigenous communities, organizations, Nations and peoples; community engagement and facilitation skills; an understanding of reconciliation and decolonization strategies; and experience managing complex, multi-year initiatives.
QUEST has adopted a cloud-based coordination and management approach that operates across Canada. We also encourage and support a flexible work environment.
Deadline for Application
This position will be posted until filled. We thank all applicants in advance for their application, but be advised that only applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.
Job Contact Information
To apply for this position, please submit a cover letter, résumé and an indication of start date availability. The anticipated start date is November 15th, 2021.