Board of Directors

MediaSmarts is governed by an elected, volunteer Board of Directors, which includes representatives of leading media companies and stakeholder sectors, including education, libraries, and community and youth-serving organizations.

Executive Committee 2021 - 2022

Chair
David Fowler
Vice-president
Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA)

Past Chair
Suzanne Morin
Vice President, Enterprise Conduct, Data Ethics and Chief Privacy Officer
Sun Life

Treasurer
Mara Tramontin
Director, Program Business Management
 TVO

Members-at-Large

Mary Cavanagh
Associate Professor, School of Information Studies
University of Ottawa 

Michael Hoechsmann
Associate Professor
Lakehead University

Board Members 2021 - 2022

Ruby Barber
Assistant General Counsel, Legal & Regulatory Affairs
Bell Canada

Nathalie Bourdon
Director, Distribution & Market Development
National Film Board of Canada (NFB)

Kevin Chan
Head of Public Policy, Canada
Facebook and Instagram

Steve de Eyre
Director of Public Policy & Government Affairs
TikTok Canada

Sam Hammond 
President 
Canadian Teachers’ Federation 

Monika Ille
Chief Executive Director
Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN)

Nimtaz Kanji
Director – TELUS Wise and Connecting for Good
Telus Communications Inc.

Normand Landry
Professor
TÉLUQ University

Colin McKay
Head, Public Policy and Government Relations, Canada
Google Inc.

Ramona Pringle
Associate Professor of Media and Director of The Creative Innovation Studio
Ryerson University

Official Observers 2020 - 2021

Nanao Kachi
Director, Social and Consumer Policy
Consumer, Research and Communications
Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC)

Past Board Members

Serge Carrier  
 1997-2021 

Shelley L. Morse 
 2019-2021 

Helen C. Kennedy
 2016-2021 

Biographies of Board Members

Ruby Barber (first elected to the Board in 2017)
Ruby is Assistant General Counsel, Legal & Regulatory Affairs, at Bell Canada and is based in Ottawa. She joined Bell in 1997 and has a broad range of legal and regulatory experience with telecom issues. She is currently responsible for privacy and compliance. Previously, she managed Bell Canada’s consumer legal team which on a day to day basis addresses legal issues impacting Bell’s customers, including the Wireless Code of Conduct. Prior to that, she supported the Mergers & Acquisitions team at Bell as Assistant General Counsel, M&A.

Before joining Bell, Ruby was an associate at Fasken Martineau in Toronto practising corporate and securities law. She is a graduate of Queen’s University (Honours Politics) and Osgoode Hall Law School and was called to the Bar in Ontario in 1991.

Nathalie Bourdon (first elected to the Board in 2021)
Nathalie is an MBA-certified marketing and communications consultant, and has the rare distinction of holding MBAs from both the Université de Montréal (HEC) and McGill University. She is a recognized leader in the distribution industry, having spent the last 25 years specializing in this area.

Nathalie was the VP Business Development of the EverApp. She has served as President of FarMore Distribution, a full-service television format and ready-to-air international distributor. She then spent 12 years at the internationally-acclaimed Just for Laughs as Director of International Sales and Senior Director of Development and Acquisitions.

Nathalie worked as an Executive Producer on Têtes à Claques, which produced more than 500 clips and 39 half hours of animation. These clips garnered over 750 million views. She was a board member for three multimedia companies and a jury member for the IEMMY Awards. She regularly hosted comedy juries at the annual Banff World Media Festival.

Nathalie knows how to put forth a creator’s vision within an evolving international market. The production knowledge and expertise in overseeing a project from beginning to end, including post-production, is essential in planning the globalization of a brand. She now works at National Film Board of Canada as head of Sales (all territories, all platforms and Educational), Archives and Customer Service.

Nathalie Bourdon, an MBA-certified marketing and communications consultant, has the rare distinction of holding MBAs from both the Université de Montréal (HEC) and McGill University. She is a recognized leader in the distribution industry, having spent the last 25 years specializing in this area.

Nathalie was the VP Business Development of the EverApp. She has served as President of FarMore Distribution, a full-service television format and ready-to-air international distributor. She then spent 12 years at the internationally-acclaimed Just for Laughs as Director of International Sales and Senior Director of Development and Acquisitions.

Nathalie worked as an Executive Producer on Têtes à Claques, which produced more than 500 clips and 39 half hours of animation. These clips garnered over 750 million views. She was a board member for three multimedia companies and a jury member for the IEMMY Awards. She regularly hosted comedy juries at the annual Banff World Media Festival.

Nathalie knows how to put forth a creator’s vision within an evolving international market. The production knowledge and expertise in overseeing a project from beginning to end, including post-production, is essential in planning the globalization of a brand. She now works at National Film Board of Canada as head of Sales (all territories, all platforms and Educational), Archives and Customer Service.

Mary Cavanagh (first elected to the Board in 2012)
Having completed her doctorate at the University of Toronto in 2009, Mary Cavanagh is now an Associate Professor with the School of Information Studies at the University of Ottawa. Her teaching and research focus on the future of public libraries, knowledge management and organizational learning, information ethics in the public domain and open access. Mary worked as a librarian and manager in both Ontario and Saskatchewan for 18 years. Between 2003 and 2009, she was coordinator of the SmartLibrary consortium in the National Capital Region. A number of Canadian public library organizations have engaged Mary as a consultant and researcher on projects related to library services for aboriginal people, libraries and the digital divide and professional practice.

Kevin Chan (first elected to the Board in 2015)
Kevin Chan is Head of Public Policy, Canada for Facebook and Instagram, engaging on a broad range of issues that impact the Internet sector.

Previously he was Deputy Secretary-General of McGill University and a Non-Residential Fellow at Stanford’s Center for Internet and Society. Earlier he served in executive roles in the federal public service.

Kevin sits on the boards of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada and the Dean’s Council at Ryerson’s Ted Rogers School of Management.

He graduated from Harvard Kennedy School, the Ivey Business School and the Royal Conservatory of Music, and is a recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.

Steve de Eyre (first elected to the Board in 2021) 
Steve de Eyre is the Director of Public Policy and Government Affairs for TikTok Canada, where he works with all levels of government to share TikTok’s commitment to user safety and privacy, and to demonstrate how Canadians are using TikTok to create, share, and find uniquely Canadian content online. Prior to joining TikTok in 2020, he was Head of Public Policy at Amazon.ca from 2016 to 2020, where he established and led Amazon’s government relations team for Canada. 

Steve has extensive experience in internet and technology policy, international and digital trade, and Canada-US relations. He previously served at the Canadian Embassy in Washington D.C. as the representative for Innovation, Science & Economic Development. 

Steve serves on the Boards of Sheridan College and MediaSmarts. He holds a B.A. (Honours) in Political Studies from Bishop’s University, where he was named a “Top 10 after 10” alumni in 2019; and J.D. from Case Western Reserve University School of Law (Cleveland, Ohio), where he served as a Senior Fellow with the Canada-United States Law Institute. He resides in Oakville, Ontario with his wife and two children. 

David Fowler (first elected to the Board in 2012)
David Fowler is Vice-president, Marketing and Communications at the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA), the organization that manages .CA, Canada’s Internet domain. Reporting to the President, he is responsible for developing and implementing the organization’s marketing and communications strategies. This includes providing executive leadership for all corporate communications/advertising programs, managing the .CA product and channel relationships.

Sam Hammond (first elected to the Board in 2021) 
Beginning his two-year term as CTF/FCE President in July 2021, Sam Hammond was elected President-Designate of the CTF/FCE by acclamation at the Federation’s 100th Annual General Meeting in 2020. 

First elected to the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario Provincial Executive, Hammond served as Vice-President and First Vice-President before becoming President in 2009. He has served as a President-Designate and Vice-President on the CTF/FCE Executive Committee and has chaired both the Finance and Constitution and Bylaws Committees as well as the Advisory Committee on the Teaching Profession. 

A recipient of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal and Toronto Pflag’s Ally Award, Hammond is unconditionally committed to the essential work of the CTF/FCE and has been a member of the Federation’s Board of Directors for 12 years. He taught all grades from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 8, was an instructor in the Labour Studies Program at McMaster University, and taught Collective Bargaining for the CLC and qualification courses for Brock University. 

Michael Hoechsmann (first elected to the Board in 2012)
Michael Hoechsmann is an Associate Professor and the Chair of Education Programs at Lakehead University, Orillia. He is co-editor and co-author of several media education titles including The Handbook of Media Education Research (IAMCR-Wiley, 2021), and Media Literacies: A Critical Introduction (Wiley, 2012; 2nd Edition in 2023). 

Monika Ille (first elected to the Board in 2020)
Monika Ille is a member of the Abenaki First Nation of Odanak. She has built a rich and diverse portfolio over the course of nearly 30 years in the broadcasting industry. After graduating with distinction from the Université du Québec à Montréal, she entered the industry by working for the Société Radio-Canada and then, for the National Film Board (NFB).

During her time at the NFB, she was instrumental in the development of a new training program for Indigenous filmmakers. This experience introduced her to the world of film production, eventually inspiring her to film her first documentary, French Man, Native Son. She has also worked with Quebec Native Women in Montréal and the Assembly of First Nations in Ottawa.

Monika brought her strong creative vision to APTN in 2003. She joined the team as the Quebec liaison officer before moving into the programming department. Most recently, she served as the executive director of programming and scheduling. Her accomplishments at the network led to her appointment as chief executive officer of APTN on Dec. 16, 2019.

Monika sits on the Boards of Youth Media Alliance and Théâtre Espace Go and sits on the NFB Indigenous Advisory Group. She is also a member of the Nominating and Governance Committee at MediaSmarts and an industry adjudicator on the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council – Quebec Regional Panel. In 2019, Monika was named one of Maison Saint-Gabriel’s Exceptional Women. She recently completed the McGill-HEC Montréal Executive MBA program.

Nanao Kachi (first appointed to the Board in 2012)
Nanao Kachi is the Director of Social and Consumer Policy at the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), a position he has held since 2012. The mandate of Mr. Kachi’s team encompasses both telecommunications and broadcasting elements. His team is responsible for a diverse array of files, from the Wireless Code to cultural diversity, closed captioning, video relay service (VRS), Described Video, the establishment of the Broadcasting Participation Fund and the Broadcasting Accessibility Fund. Mr. Kachi began his career at the CRTC in 2003 as a senior analyst working on television related issues, including closed captioning and described video.

Nimtaz Kanji (first elected to the Board in 2018)
Nimmi Kanji is the Director for the TELUS Wise, a free educational program offered by TELUS that seeks to empower Canadians to stay safe in our digital world.  She started her career at TELUS nineteen years ago, while she was a student at the University of Calgary.  After graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce in Marketing and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, and prior to leading TELUS Wise, she spent several years in TELUS Business Marketing. Nimmi is passionate about smartphone and online safety and is eager to help curb cyberbullying.

Normand Landry (first elected to the Board in 2018)
Normand Landry is Canada Research Chair in Media Education and Human Rights and Professor at TÉLUQ (Université du Québec). He holds a Ph.D. from McGill University and conducted postdoctoral research projects at Concordia University. Normand’s work focuses on communication rights, media education, social movement theory, law and democratic communications.

Colin McKay (first elected to the Board in 2012)
Colin is on Google’s global public policy team, where he tries to keep the internet brimming with discovery and delight.

In addition to privacy and data protection, Colin worked on innovation agendas, launched science and technology strategies, planned for copyright reform and encouraged the development of intelligent transportation systems over a 15 year career in the Canadian public service.

In recent years with the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, his team researched the impact of the digital economy on personal privacy, and then built tools to help individuals understand their privacy rights.

Colin is also a member of the Government of Canada Advisory Panel on Open Government.

Always fascinated by information networks and new technology, he blogs and tweets more than he probably should. As a pre-teen, he preferred his Star Wars digital watch to the Casio calculator watch.

Colin has an M.A in international relations from the University of Toronto, although his understanding of politics was largely shaped by Monty Python.

Suzanne Morin (first elected to the Board in 2008)
In September 2015, after more than 20 years in the communications industry, spanning Stentor, the Bell Canada family including a brief stint as BlackBerry’s first global privacy officer, Suzanne shifted industries and joined Sun Life Financial Canada. She is now responsible to lead the team providing legal support to the business in Québec combined with overall leadership for privacy at Sun Life and its subsidiaries worldwide.

Since her call to the Bar, Suzanne has been working in the areas of privacy, copyright, communications and electronic commerce generally, including areas such as network neutrality, lawful access, unsolicited bulk email or spam, jurisdiction, consumer protection and online child exploitation. 

A big believer in giving back to the community, she continues to be involved with many organizations including the Canadian Bar Association’s National Privacy and Access Law Section, the Canadian Center for Child Protection and MediaSmarts, a leader in media and digital literacy. Suzanne was an appointed member of the board of the Standards Council of Canada for over a decade and was a member of the Canadian Spam Task Force. 

She speaks frequently at Canadian and international conferences and is an Advisory Board Member and occasional contributor to the Internet and E-commerce Law in Canada and the Canadian Privacy Law Review.

Ramona Pringle (first elected to the Board in 2020)
Ramona Pringle is an Associate Professor in the RTA School of Media at Ryerson University, and Director of The Creative Innovation Studio, a creative network comprised of multiple incubators, including the Transmedia Zone, Design Fabrication Zone, and Fashion Zone, as well as the Global Campus Studio, a unique digital studio devoted to fostering international co-productions through the use of contemporary collaboration tools. 

As a writer, producer, researcher and journalist, Ramona’s work examines the evolving relationship between humans and technology. She is a technology analyst and columnist for CBC, where she tackles current affairs and explores the impact of technology and social media on all aspects of people’s lives, from work to relationships.

Ramona was the writer and director of the interactive documentary “Avatar Secrets, the interactive producer of PBS Frontline’s “Digital Nation,” and editor in chief of “Rdigitalife,” and has edited and guest edited several “IEEE” publications.

Ramona’s projects have been featured at festivals and conferences including i-docs, Power to the Pixel, TFI Interactive, Sheffield Doc/Fest, Hot Docs, SXSW, NXNE, Social Media Week, TEDx, and in publications including the New York Times, Mashable, Cult of Mac and the Huffington Post. She is a member of the City of Toronto Film, Television and Digital Media Board, and the Chair of Interactive Ontario’s Emerging Talent Committee.

Ramona has a Master’s Degree from NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program.

Mara Tramontin (first elected to the Board in 2017)
Having worked in or supported almost all areas of TVO, has a depth of knowledge and breadth of experience at the level of senior management. Her career at TVO has spanned production, operations management, finance, administration and human resources. Mara played an integral part in transforming TVO from an over the air broadcaster to the multi-platform digital organization that it is today, focused on Digital Education and Current Affairs & Documentaries. Mara is a graduate of the Schulich School of Business at York University. Mara was instrumental in two projects that recently won innovation awards.

Celebrating Exceptional Learning and Development Professionals (Canadian Society for Training and Development Professionals): TVO in partnership with OCAD University developed an innovative program that empowered employees to embrace continual change and created a digital mindset to “future proof” TVO.

Innovatio Award Celebrating In-House Innovation (Canadian Lawyer Magazine): TVO developed a content and program rights system to track media content deals from development to distribution. This innovation successfully moved beyond a simple rights database to a customizable reporting tool that facilitated reiterations of existing products as part of a more sustainable business model.