Leslie Woo

Leslie Woo Hi Res small

Leslie Woo leads innovative and award-winning urban planning initiatives transforming urban development in one of the world’s most liveable city regions, the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area, Canada.

As Metrolinx’s Vice President of Policy, Planning and Innovation, Leslie is a driving force behind the region’s first ever regional transportation plan – The Big Move – a comprehensive 25 year mobility plan envisioning transportation that will meet the needs of an additional one hundred thousand new residents every year for the next twenty years. The Big Move is the regional transportation authority’s blueprint for delivering over $16B in rapid transit expansion in the next 10 years. Leslie is the executive champion for driving innovation and design excellence and leads Metrolinx’s network for women in management.

Leslie’s strategic expertise in addressing complex urban challenges is evidenced in her leadership role, from discovery to delivery, of the provincially legislated Greater Golden Horseshoe Growth Plan (2006). Over the last five years this growth plan has resulted in urban intensification totalling an 18% increase in multi-family residential development and a two-thirds reduction of greenfield lands consumption and, conserving about 800 square kilometres of agricultural and rural land.

Formally trained in architecture, environmental studies and urban planning at the University of Waterloo, Leslie’s career portfolio includes senior roles with the Toronto 2008 Olympic Bid and Toronto Waterfront Regeneration Trust.

Leslie is a 2011/12 Fellow of the International Women’s Forum, a global association of more than 4,500 women leaders from over 24 countries. She is a member of the Scientific and Strategy Council of the Institut pour la ville en mouvement (IVM), the Urban Land Institute – Toronto Advisory Board, the Transportation Association of Canada’s Urban Transportation Council Executive, the American Planning Association, and a retired member of the Ontario Association of Architects. Leslie has been a volunteer board director with the YMCA for the Greater Toronto Area since 2009.

Born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, Leslie is a mother of two and an active community volunteer.


Natalia Ortiz Moreno

Natalia Ortiz, student of Project Management Environmental (PME) program in Seneca Polytechnic, has an Environmental Engineering background completed at Universidad El Bosque in Colombia. She has always been involved in sustainability roles and projects that included Environmental Management Systems implementation, Water Treatment Systems’ design and operation, Hazardous and Conventional Waste management and minimization practices, as well as Ecosystem’s Conservation and Energy
Efficiency programs.

For the PME – Applied Project Management Course, Natalia developed a Green Roof Assessment Tool for Seneca Polytechnic’s Office of Sustainability, with the aim to provide green roof technology recommendations best suited to a particular scenario, taking into consideration multiple aspects of green roofs and buildings; infrastructure, design, materials, environmental factors, and costs, as well as the Toronto Municipal Code – Green Roof bylaw. Natalia also has a scientific journal publication as the main author of the project “Selection and sizing of industrial wastewater treatment units required at the
new maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) aircraft facility owned by Avianca S.A. in Rionegro Antioquia” in the El Bosque University Journal of Technology.

Natalia strongly believes there are several research topics left to be developed, and the importance of
working towards Sustainability from different backgrounds, knowledge, and cultures to build strong, productive, and resilient communities.
With the vision of growing cities and infrastructure along with nature, always preserving and respecting the ecosystems’ attributes and services, Natalia would like to keep researching and acquiring more experience in Sustainability roles.

Emily Smit

Emily is a second-year PhD student in Geography at the University of Toronto, and a co-operator of a small home renovation company, Magnus Home Improvements. Her research seeks to determine how single-family homes can quickly and best be retrofit to achieve Toronto’s emissions reductions targets – including net-zero by 2040 – as part of the TransformTO climate action plan. Specifically, she will assess the impact of municipal home energy reporting and disclosure programs, as well as produce recommendations for growing the retrofit labour force in ways that attend to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Further, her research seeks to understand how home retrofit activities can be regenerative and produce net-positive impacts for humans and the environment towards transformative, place-based sustainability. When not at her computer, Emily can be found cycling with her kids to and from school or making funky sounds on her analog synthesizer.

Bofa Udisi

Bofa is a sustainability professional with over seven years in the energy and environment industry. He has a Bachelor of Science in Energy and Petroleum Studies from Novena University in Nigeria and graduate certificates in Energy Management and Environmental Project Management from Seneca College in Toronto. In 2020, he graduated from the University of Waterloo with a Master of Environment and Business degree. He is currently a Ph.D. Candidate in the Building Science program at Toronto Metropolitan University, researching whole-life carbon reduction in new construction and building renovations.

Bofa‘s work experience is primarily in the built environment, working in the private and public sectors in roles that involve structural and environmental assessment of building structures, HVAC engineering design and sales, and facilities management. Bofa is a member of several industry associations, such as the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE), the American Society for Heating Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), and the Project Management Institute (PMI). SBC’s bursary will go a long way in supporting Bofa‘s research and his desire to learn.