CityAge Speakers Include:


CityAge: Build the Future
Hamilton, ON
The Cotton Factory, Main Event Space on the 3rd floor
270 Sherman Avenue N
May 24 & 25, 2017

A new kind of city is being built across Canada and the United States, as the industrial economy begins to implement new tools in innovation to build more prosperous, equitable opportunities in towns and cities across Ontario and the continent.

Places once defined by a single industry are building innovative and inclusive new economies. Towns mid-sized cities are partnering with business, colleges and universities to catalyze talent and build social equity, renew their urban spaces and accelerate the transition to a more prosperous future.

To build more opportunity, cities, companies, public and social institutions and Indigenous communities must build new partnerships to implement the tools of tomorrow. How can that happen more quickly?

Join us at CityAge: Hamilton on May 24 & 25, 2017

CityAge is delighted to partner with McMaster University and Evergreen to identify the opportunities, ideas, partnerships and investment models essential to building – and re-building – our towns and cities. It will gather a set of speakers and delegates from across North America to look at the replicable examples of how we can build a more prosperous and inclusive future.

Register and learn more at:


Day 1 ~ May 24th, 2017

8:00 am      Breakfast Served

8:45am       Conference Opening by Event MC:       Ralph Benmergui, CEO, Create Hamilton

9:00 am      Welcome Comments by:   Chief Stacey LaForme, Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation

9:15 am      Conference Welcome:     Fred Eisenberger, Mayor, City of Hamilton

9:30 am      John Preston, Associate Dean, Research and External Relations, Faculty of Engineering, McMaster University

9:50 am      Session 1:   Industry Meets Innovation: Embracing the blast furnace and our digital future
How are mid-sized and industrial cities across North America re-casting their futures and building economic opportunity? This session will look at how urban companies, universities and cities are partnering to implement new tools in innovation and train their citizens to prosper in our modern innovation economy.

  • Chris Murray, City Manager, City of Hamilton, ON
  • Rob Terry, Community Development Director, City of Reedley, CA
  • Philippe Dauphin, Director General, CanMET Materials, Natural Resources Canada
  • Ted Scott, Chief Innovation Officer, Hamilton Health Sciences
               Panel Chair: Avvey Peters, Vice President, Partnerships, Communitech

10:35 am      Hon. Tony Valeri, Vice President, Corporate Affairs, ArcelorMittal Dofasco

10:55 am      Morning Break

11:25 am      Session 2:        Building a Supercluster
The recent federal budget committed 950 million dollars to building superclusters of innovation in regions across Canada. Advanced manufacturing and building the globally competitive industries of the future is essential. What are the essential elements of these new innovation networks, and how should mid-sized cities be thinking about them?

  • Greg Spencer, Senior Researcher, University of Toronto
  • Robert Baker, Vice President, Research, McMaster University
  • Angela Pappin, Vice President, Technology, ArcelorMittal Dofasco
  • Jayson Myers, Principal, Jayson Myers Public Affairs (Former CEO, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters)
               Panel Chair: Giles Gherson, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Economic Development and Growth, Province of Ontario

12:10 pm     Jo Flatt, Senior Project Manager, Mid-Size City Building Program, Evergreen

12:30 pm      Lunch

1:30 pm       Session 3:        Building the Mid-Sized City
How can mid-sized cities and towns use their unique strengths to encourage livability, build prosperity and unleash entrepreneurial energies and culture? What are the right regulatory tools and investments in mid-sized cities, especially in those places that face outdated rules and regulations? How are mid-sized cities building global connections? This session will explore how next generation design, planning and branding can attract business, create jobs and build opportunity.

  • Vijay Bathija, President & CEO, John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport
  • Jason Thorne, General Manager, Planning and Economic Development, City of Hamilton, ON
  • Jason Segedy, Director of Planning and Urban Development, City of Akron, OH
  • Jonathan Tinney, Director, Sustainable Development & Community Planning, City of Victoria
              Panel Chair: Lauren Millier, Vice President, Consulting, MDB Insight

2:15 pm       Adam Sweet, Chief of Staff, Edmonton Economic Development Corporation

2:35 pm       Daniel Tuba D’Souza, Founder and Co-Director, Hack the City

2:55 pm       Session 4:        Partnerships to Build the Future
What is the role of regional, provincial and federal government to forge the partnerships essential to promote smart urban growth and urban renewal? How can communities across the country think about their role in a regional economy and its patterns of trade, and making the investments that encourage prosperity? With Canada about to spend billions on infrastructure, what should mid-sized cities be asking for?

  • John Fleming, Managing Director of Planning and City Planner, City of London, ON
  • Paul Johnson, Director, LRT Project Coordination, City of Hamilton
  • Angelo Miceli, Director, Public Segment, Philips Lighting
  • Michael Lindsay, Global Director, Infrastructure Planning and Advisory, Hatch
              Panel Chair: Josipa Petrunic, Executive Director, Canadian Urban Transit Research and Innovation Consortium

3:40 pm       Day 1 Closing Comments and Invitation to Evening Program

3:45 pm       Day 1 Close

May 24th, 2017 ~ Evening Program 7-9 pm

Your City, Your Spaces: Adaptive Reuse for Community Benefit
Hosted by Evergreen and McMaster University

Location: David Braley Health Sciences Centre, 100 Main Street West, Hamilton

Join us for a panel discussion on how Ontario’s mid-sized cities are transforming underutilized physical spaces for community benefit. We’ll hear stories from community leaders from across Ontario who have leveraged local assets to create vibrant cities and neighbourhoods.

Day 2 ~ May 25th, 2017

8:00 am       Breakfast Served

8:45 am       Day 2 Welcome by Conference MC:            Ralph Benmergui, CEO, Create Hamilton

9:00 am       Session 5:        Connecting the City
A fundamental foundation for the renewal of mid-size cities is the development of digital infrastructure and practices that make use of quickly developing data technologies and improve engagement with their citizens. We will look at the new investments in technology are essential in mid-sized cities, and how new practices can help cities improve operations and livability.

  • Ashleigh Weeden, Communications Manager, SWIFT Network
  • Gabe Sawhney, Executive Director, Code for Canada
  • Bob Lytle, Founder,
  • Fei Chiang, Assistant Professor, Department of Computing and Software, McMaster University
               Panel Chair: John Preston, Associate Dean, Research and External Relations, Faculty of Engineering, McMaster University

9:45 am        Walter Sendzik, Mayor, City of St. Catharines, ON

10:05 am       David Schwartz, Vice President, Economic & Planning Systems (Denver, CO)

10:25 am       Break

10:45 am       Session 6:       Leveraging our Talent
This session will explore the strategies that attract and develop talent — of newcomers, indigenous communities and youth populations — to help mid-sized cities thrive and build social equity. What are the best strategies for investing in education – from primary through post-secondary? How can communities support re-training their populations for the needs of the modern economy, and ensure that no one is left behind?

  • Judy Travis, Executive Director, Workforce Planning Hamilton
  • Sean Fedorko, Co-Founder, Radius CoWork, (Erie, PA)
  • Chandran Fernando, Principal and Founder, Matrix Search Group (Toronto, ON)
  • Jim Vanderveken, Mohawk College, Dean, Centre for Community Partnerships & Experiential Learning
             Panel Chair: Ron McKerlie, President, Mohawk College

11:30 am     Session 7:       The Sustainable Mid-Sized City
Mid-size cities, because of their scale, are becoming leaders in implementing best practices in urban energy, sustainability and building new clean tech industries. We will look at the best practices in sustainability and also the strategies to manage growth, build new clean tech companies and retain the livability that is one of mid-size cities’ key attractions for people and investment.

  • Brianna Salmon, Executive Director, Peterborough GreenUP
  • John Knight, Manager, Corporate Research Partnerships, Trent University
  • Chris McLaughlin, Executive Director, Bay Area Restoration Council
  • Jay Carter, Hamilton Program Manager, Evergreen
               Panel Chair: Suzanne Brown, Director, Neighborhood and Community Initiatives, City of Hamilton

12:15 pm     Conference Close