Sessions available to delegates at the announced date.

Live Session

Why an ECE is likely to be an EDO’s BFF in 2022 and beyond!

Kelly Emery
Director of Children’s Services & Recreation, Municipality of Chatham-Kent
Dr. Emis Akbari
Professor, George Brown College / Atkinson Centre
Armine Yalnizyan
Economist, Atkinson Fellow on the Future of Workers
Michelle Schurter
Millennial Strategist
Audrey Ansell, Ec.D.
Director Community Attraction & Promotion, Municipality of Chatham-Kent
Mon, Oct 3
Time of Session
10:00 am
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Kelly Emery
Director of Children’s Services & Recreation, Municipality of Chatham-Kent
Dr. Emis Akbari
Professor, George Brown College / Atkinson Centre
Armine Yalnizyan
Economist, Atkinson Fellow on the Future of Workers
Michelle Schurter
Millennial Strategist
Audrey Ansell, Ec.D.
Director Community Attraction & Promotion, Municipality of Chatham-Kent

EDOs thrive in the language of land use, brownfields, business retention, start-ups and talent.  We foster conditions of economic growth through infrastructure investment, and we strive to build communities rich in live, work, play amenities.  So why on earth would we add child care to our lexicon?  Why should we (EDOs) be talking to the other side of City Hall – isn’t child care a social service department responsibility?   Join this session to hear more about why digging in deep to child care as an investment in your community could possibly be the most impactful infrastructure you focus on in 2022 and beyond. 

In this session, we will explore questions such as….

  • Why are we talking about Child Care at an Ec Dev conference?  What is the she-cession and what did we learn about child care during Covid?  How do employers, talent attraction, child care, and ‘hybrid’ return to work models align? What is the broader ‘care economy’ that child care fits into…and what can EDO’s do about it?
  • What is the state of ECE Workforce in Canada?  What happens if we do nothing to support this sector?  What is the impact of ECE on other workforce sectors / employment rates?  What role do EDO’s play?
  • What is CWELCC all about (the Canada Wide Early Learning Child Care Agreement)?   Won’t $10/day child care fix any of the issues for families and local communities?  Why do we need to address the child care workforce capacity to influence the outcome of CWELCC? 
  • What is happening now in communities across Canada to address ECE and the child care workforce?  What can local Ec Dev Officers do?

About the Speakers

Live Session

Kelly Emery

Director of Children’s Services & Recreation, Municipality of Chatham-Kent
Kelly Emery is a versatile people person and problem solver with over 30 years of experience in the field of social services with proficiencies in project leadership, policy development, budgeting, and operational facilities management.  Kelly is a Registered Early Childhood Educator, who received her ECE from Lambton College straight...
Speaker Bio
Live Session

Kelly Emery

Director of Children’s Services & Recreation, Municipality of Chatham-Kent

Kelly Emery is a versatile people person and problem solver with over 30 years of experience in the field of social services with proficiencies in project leadership, policy development, budgeting, and operational facilities management.  Kelly is a Registered Early Childhood Educator, who received her ECE from Lambton College straight out of high school.  Kelly knew she wanted to work with children from the start, and was driven to create positive, enriching learning environments where children flourish and families feel they belong.  Not only does Kelly know how to create the conditions that allow children thrive during the early years, she is a ‘big-picture’ systems builder and community champion.  Having worked with the Ministry of Children and Youth Services and Chatham Kent Lambton School Services, Kelly forged relationships among the many players in community systems, while navigating policy, budget and legislation to create local solutions for children and families.  Currently, Kelly is the Director of Children’s Services and Recreation with the Municipality of Chatham-Kent, working with her provincial and local partners to implement the Canada Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement within Chatham-Kent.  Kelly is a champion not only of the multiple facets of children’s services within a community, but a passionate mentor for future child care leaders.  If Kelly isn’t making slime with her grandchildren, she is planning her next retail or sunny adventure!

Live Session

Dr. Emis Akbari

Professor, George Brown College / Atkinson Centre
Emis Akbari is a Professor and Program Coordinator in the School of Early Childhood at George Brown College, an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Applied Psychology and Human Development, and the Senior Policy Fellow at Atkinson Centre at OISE/University of Toronto.  A behavioural neuroscientist by training, she now...
Speaker Bio
Live Session

Dr. Emis Akbari

Professor, George Brown College / Atkinson Centre

Emis Akbari is a Professor and Program Coordinator in the School of Early Childhood at George Brown College, an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Applied Psychology and Human Development, and the Senior Policy Fellow at Atkinson Centre at OISE/University of Toronto.  A behavioural neuroscientist by training, she now evaluates both current and changes in policy related to early childhood education at all levels of government.  Emis is also the co-author of the Early Childhood Education Report.  This report provides a snapshot of provincial and territorial early education services and performance on various criteria of quality including access to child care programs and investments in early education.  It also compares Canada to other developed economies.  She is ardent and committed to evidence-based change in policy and global development and its connection to improving child education, child development, and outcome.

Live Session

Armine Yalnizyan

Economist, Atkinson Fellow on the Future of Workers
Armine Yalnizyan is the Atkinson Foundation’s Fellow on the Future of Workers, and a leading voice on Canada’s economic scene. She was Senior Economic Policy Advisor for the Deputy Minister at Employment and Social Development Canada from 2018 to 2019, and served on Ministers Freeland and Fortier’s Task Group...
Speaker Bio
Live Session

Armine Yalnizyan

Economist, Atkinson Fellow on the Future of Workers

Armine Yalnizyan is the Atkinson Foundation’s Fellow on the Future of Workers, and a leading voice on Canada’s economic scene. She was Senior Economic Policy Advisor for the Deputy Minister at Employment and Social Development Canada from 2018 to 2019, and served on Ministers Freeland and Fortier’s Task Group on Women in the Economy in 2021. She helped shape the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives' Inequality Project from 2006 to 2017. Armine provided weekly business commentaries on CBC radio and CBC TV from 2011 to 2018 and now writes a bi-monthly business column for the Toronto Star. She is past President of the Canadian Association for Business Economics.

Live Session

Michelle Schurter

Millennial Strategist
Michelle Schurter is a sought after community change agent.  Practical, poised and passionate to help communities take it to the next gear, Michelle has worked in both economic development and social services.  Her early career was rooted in children, youth and families.  With a Child Studies undergraduate degree and...
Speaker Bio
Live Session

Michelle Schurter

Millennial Strategist

Michelle Schurter is a sought after community change agent.  Practical, poised and passionate to help communities take it to the next gear, Michelle has worked in both economic development and social services.  Her early career was rooted in children, youth and families.  With a Child Studies undergraduate degree and a Masters in Social Work, Michelle brought her energy, compassion and curiosity to children in early years settings, outdoor treatment programs, hospitals and school counselling.  Michelle knows kids!  Mid-career, Michelle dove into a full-time MBA, and shifted her focus toward downtown revitalization at the City of Kitchener, research to commercialization with the University of Guelph at MaRS, and leadership roles in Innovation teams at the provincial government (Ministries of Child and Youth Services; Agriculture and Rural Affairs; and Education).  In 2017, Michelle took another leap, and started her own consulting practice with keynotes and training on the multi-generations in the workforce, and more dynamic strategic projects that bridge municipalities, industry and all things community growth!   Buckle up, Michelle will have you connecting with stakeholders far outside your typical coffee club, and pushing your limits on what success means for you! 

Live Session

Audrey Ansell, Ec.D.

Director Community Attraction & Promotion, Municipality of Chatham-Kent
Audrey Ansell graduated with a Master’s Degree in Economics from University College Dublin, Ireland and having worked as an investment analyst/stockbroker in the UK, she then immigrated to Chatham-Kent.  Audrey is a Certified Economic Developer and the Director of Community Attraction & Promotion for the Municipality of Chatham-Kent. With...
Speaker Bio
Live Session

Audrey Ansell, Ec.D.

Director Community Attraction & Promotion, Municipality of Chatham-Kent

Audrey Ansell graduated with a Master’s Degree in Economics from University College Dublin, Ireland and having worked as an investment analyst/stockbroker in the UK, she then immigrated to Chatham-Kent.  Audrey is a Certified Economic Developer and the Director of Community Attraction & Promotion for the Municipality of Chatham-Kent. With a portfolio focused on attracting and retaining talent/workforce, residents and visitors, Audrey’s work is centered on applying the core principles of economic development to community economic development initiatives. Communities grow when everyone shares a common goal and works toward achieving it and Audrey believes that finding goals is possible when a community’s assets, culture and people are understood. Understanding and hearing the community helps everyone to see where and how they can contribute.

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