The WiRE Advisory Committee consists of exceptional professional women drawn from sectors across the spectrum of the energy industry in Canada. Committee members commit their time voluntarily to manage WiRE programming, business and operations.
Joanna Osawe, WiRE Co-Founder & Chair
Joanna Osawe is the Global Business Development Manager – Major Projects at DMC Power Inc.. Joanna attended Western University studying Languages, graduating with an Honours BA. Joanna has used her language skills on a focused, 15+ year management career at leading renewable and energy sector companies in Canada and the United States. By carrying complex projects through many stages she has seen firsthand the vital role renewable energy and emerging technologies serve in moving the Canadian, American and global energy mix forward.
Rebecca Black, WiRE Co-Founder
Rebecca Black applies project management, marketing and business development expertise to help Black Current Marketing clients achieve their sustainability and sales goals on time, on budget and in style. She specializes in clean energy, social finance and the sustainable built environment. Rebecca has a Master of Environmental Studies (FES) and Diploma in Business and the Environment (Schulich Business School) from York University (Toronto). She serves on the Board of TREC Renewable Energy Co-op.
Brandy Giannetta, WiRE Executive Board Member & Director
Brandy Giannetta is the Regional Director for Ontario at the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA). CanWEA is the voice of Canada's wind energy industry. An integral member of a dedicated and passionate team, Brandy and her colleagues actively promote the responsible and sustainable growth of wind energy on behalf of CanWEA’s members, and for the benefit of all Canadians. A national non-profit association, CanWEA serves as Canada's leading source of credible information about wind energy and its social, economic and environmental benefits.
Aisha Bukhari, WiRE Executive Board Member & Director
Aisha has a background in engineering, business, and social entrepreneurship. She enjoys work that creates positive social impact, leading change and developing integrative solutions, and is passionate about clean energy, innovation and social justice. Aisha worked in engineering and business development at Toronto Hydro and is a co-founder of EdTech startup, Attollo Social Enterprise. She has a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering (University of Toronto), a Masters in Electric Power Engineering (University of Waterloo) and an MBA (Rotman School of Management, U of Toronto).
Over the last 15+ years, Jen has lead the charge in the insurance industry in consultation with sustainability and renewable energy leaders, by creating a suite of risk mitigation and insurance products specific to their unique demands for performance and bankability. A passionate community volunteer, Jen is prior Board Chair of Touchstone Youth Shelter focusing on nutrition sustainability; served as the Chair of CanSIA’s PV Fire Safety Committee with multi-stakeholders to develop the current PV Fire Safety Manual; currently serves on the Governance Committee of Solarshare.
G&W Canada, Sales Manager-Ontario, 25+ year veteran. "Global supplier of electric power equipment since 1905". Products manufactured in Brampton for the Renewable Industry: Wind tower load and fault interrupting switches designed to fit within the access door of the tower; Padmount load and fault interrupting switchgear designed for application on collector systems; Padmount Sectionalizing Cabinets designed for application on collector systems; and Reclosers designed to provide overcurrent protection permitting an economical alternative to circuit breakers.
Valerie Kitchell has been driven by her passion for environmental sustainability, energy, education, and stakeholder engagement for the past 10 years. Valerie is active in wind energy development. With a background in health science, business and environmental policy, Valerie worked with the Ontario Sustainable Energy Association to drive the expansion of renewable energy in the province. A proud member of the Women in Renewable Energy Advisory Committee, Valerie is dedicated to furthering education and awareness surrounding renewable energy development and policy.
Mary Warner has worked at TREC for over 8 years. As Finance Manager, she manages the bookkeeping and financial reporting for TREC and its many renewable energy co-operative and charity clients. Mary is dedicated to helping boards better understand their financial position through clear, timely and customized reporting. A passionate cyclist, Mary commutes by bike most of the year and loves exploring the city's bike paths and trails with her husband and daughters.
Julia Cushing is a Senior Environmental Planner at Savanta with over 10 years of experience conducting environmental assessments with a focus on renewable energy projects. In her role, Julia is responsible for managing projects, liaising with clients and developing business opportunities. Through her involvement with WiRE, Julia looks forward to meeting and supporting other professionals in the industry. She values the networking and career development focus of WiRE, in addition to the mentorship opportunities.
Catalina Castillo is a Manager in Brookfield Renewable's Asset Management group and has over 7 years experience working in the energy and resources sector. In her current role she provides management and oversight for Brookfield Renewable's global investments in renewable platforms and works closely with the investment and capital markets teams. Catalina is passionate about growing the involvement of women in the sector and looks forward to supporting WiRE's initiatives and mission.
Sara has spent the last 10 years establishing partnerships and economic opportunities between Indigenous communities and non-Indigenous stakeholders. She has worked with a wide range of industry partners to facilitate discussions with Indigenous groups on major projects across Ontario. A results-oriented strategist, Sara is a skilled organizer, researcher, writer and facilitator from Six Nations of The Grand River Territory.
Laura Van Soelen is a lawyer who works as a partner in Gowling WLG’s Toronto office. Laura advises clients in the energy sector on regulatory compliance, dispute resolution and transactional issues. Her clients include electricity generators, suppliers, competitive energy retailers and operators, with a particular focus on clients operating in the solar industry. Laura has appeared before all levels of court in Ontario, the Federal Court and the Federal Court of Appeal, as well as arbitration panels and regulatory tribunals.
Sarah Simmons has 9+ years experience in the electricity sector working with generators, distributors, transmitters, load customers and technology providers. She provides expert advice on matters of regulatory affairs, generation procurement, power system planning, energy policy and emerging trends.
Previously, Sarah worked for Sussex Strategy Group, SunEdison Canada, and the Ontario Power Authority. She has a Master’s Degree of Environmental Studies (University of Waterloo), a Bachelors Degree in Environmental Science (University of Guelph) and received the Canadian Solar Industries Association President’s award in 2012.
If you would like to be considered for a position on the WiRE Advisory Committee, please contact email@example.com.