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Board of Directors

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Jon Hantho

Chair of the Board

​Jon is a seasoned business executive with over 25 years of experience, including general management of mid to large size organizations, corporate development, business development, product/service development, business operations, and strategy.  He has a proven track record for extraordinary revenue growth, operating performance and developing sustainable, thriving organizations.

In 2015, Jon completed nine years as CEO of Maxxam Analytics, Canada's largest and leading analytical services company serving the energy, environmental, food and DNA markets. Under his leadership the business more than doubled in size and financial performance through business expansion, innovation and a culture of integrity. The business was private equity and management owned prior to its successful sale to global industry leader, Bureau Veritas in January 2014. Jon is now pursuing new opportunities to advance business creation and leadership development in Canada.

Prior to Maxxam, Jon was the founder and President of a business communications services company as well as holding several successful senior leadership roles across a variety of industries and company sizes/stages.

Jon has an MBA from the Ivey Business School and an Honours BA from Queens University He has served on the Board of ECO Canada as well as the Foreign Affairs and International Trade Cleantech Canada. He is currently a member of the Ivey Business School Advisory Board and the Ivey Leadership Institute Council. Jon is a 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® award winner for his successful leadership at Maxxam. He was also awarded a Special Citation for Entrepreneurial Leadership as part of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year® National Awards. In 2013, Jon was recognized for his contributions to Canadian industry in the field of chemistry and awarded the Purvis Memorial Award of the Society for Chemical Industry. Jon has been both a regional and national judge for the EY Entrepreneur of the Year® for 2014, 2015 & 2016.


Tom Closson

​Tom is currently the principal of Tom Closson Consulting. Prior to this, he held the position of President and CEO of the Ontario Hospital Association, stepping down in 2012.

Tom has previously held roles as President and Chief Executive Officer of the University Health Network (UHN) in Toronto; President and CEO of the Capital Health Region in Victoria; and President and CEO of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.

Tom obtained experience in healthcare consulting as an owner of Medicus Canada and as a partner with KPMG. He has government experience with the Ontario Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Community and Social Services and the Management Board.

He is currently on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement, Health Quality Ontario and LifeLabs. He co-chairs the Health Policy Advisory Panel for C.D. Howe and is a volunteer advisor to entrepreneurs at the MaRS Discovery District.

Tom earned an MBA from York University in Toronto and graduated from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Industrial Engineering.  Tom has been a member of LifeLabs' Board of Directors since October 2009.


John Knowlton

​In his role at Borealis and OMERS as Executive Vice President, Legal John is responsible for leading the legal group at OMERS Private Markets which includes the Borealis and OMERS Private Equity legal teams. John is a member of the executive management team of Borealis and of OMERS Private Equity.   Within the Private Markets transaction teams, the legal team members that he leads play a key role in the pursuit, acquisition and management of assets within the Infrastructure and Private Equity portfolios. In addition, John plays a leading role in the asset management of a number of Borealis investments.

John joined Borealis in April 2005 as Vice President, Legal and General Counsel. He led the Borealis legal team for several years prior to moving into a co-lead role of the Borealis transaction team between 2011 and 2014, playing a key role in the execution of numerous investment transactions. He has considerable experience in structuring international infrastructure projects, negotiating and closing acquisitions and financings.

John is a former associate at Torys LLP, and former senior legal counsel at Bombardier Transportation.

He is a member of the board of directors of Lifelabs, a member of the board of directors of DynaLife and Teranet and a member of several board committees. He holds an Honours BA (Economics) degree from the University of Western Ontario, and an MBA and LL.B. from the University of Ottawa.


David Podmore

​Widely recognized as one of Vancouver’s most influential contributors to the real estate industry, David Podmore has been in the business for more than 40 years. David brought years of planning and development experience to the table when he co-founded Concert with Jack Poole in 1989. Today, David serves as Concert’s Chairman & Chief Executive Officer.  As of January 2015, the Concert entities (owned by 19 Canadian pension funds representing 200,000 British Columbians) had shareholders’ equity of over $1.7 billion and assets of over $2.8 billion with significant increases expected in the 2015 operating year.

David holds a Bachelor’s Degree specializing in community planning from the University of British Columbia and a Master’s Degree (Earth Sciences) specializing in urban planning from the University of Alberta. He is a Registered Professional Planner (MCIP), a Professional Member of the Real Estate Institute of British Columbia (RIBC) and the Real Estate Institute of Canada (FRI).  In 2005, David was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Technology from the British Columbia Institute of Technology.

David has served as Chair of the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) Foundation, President of the Urban Development Institute (Pacific Region), President of the Greater Vancouver Home Builders Association, member of the BC Progress Board, Chair of the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation (BCCHF) and spent eight years as a director of the Canadian Tourism Commission.  He currently serves as Chair of the FortisBC Board of Directors and is a Director of LifeLabs Inc.  He recently returned as Chair of the BCCHF.

David is often recognized for his tireless efforts to give back to the community, both professionally and personally, serving as Chair of the BC Pavilion Corporation between 2007 and 2012 when he was asked to assume responsibility to oversee completion of the Vancouver Convention Centre Expansion in preparation for the 2010 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, and subsequently refurbishment of BC Place Stadium. He also played a key role in development of facilities plans for Vancouver’s bid to host the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games and chaired the 2003 “Vote Yes” plebiscite campaign successfully urging Vancouver voters to support the Vancouver 2010 Olympic bid.

David is the recipient of numerous community and professional awards including the first Award of Excellence granted by the Real Estate Institute of BC.  In February 2011, he was selected as British Columbia's "Residential Construction Person of the Year".  He is a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, and in 2014 was invested to the Order of British Columbia. David has been a member of LifeLabs’ Board of Directors since October 2009.


James Scognack

James Scongack is currently the Vice-President of Corporate Affairs for Bruce Power, Ontario's largest independent electricity producer and operator of the largest nuclear facility in the World.

Reporting to the President and CEO, the Vice-President of Corporate Affairs is responsible for media/investor relations, external communications, employee communication, community relations, corporate social responsibility, aboriginal affairs, environment and sustainability and stakeholder relations.

Prior to his role in Corporate Affairs, James held the role as Executive Assistant to the President & CEO, while managing various company initiatives including new build development projects for the company. Prior to that James worked within Bruce Power in the areas of Business Development and in Corporate Communications.

James is currently a Board member of the Energy Council of Canada and serves as Chair of World Nuclear Association Communications Committee as well as the Bruce Power-Saugeen Shores-Kincardine Physician Recruitment Committee.

James also sits on the Board of Directors for Easter Seals Ontario and the Southwest Economic Alliance. James has a Master's Degree from the University of Guelph College of Management and Economics in Leadership and a BA (Hons.). James is also a Chartered Director through the DeGroote Business School Directors College.


Dr. Gavin Stuart

​Gavin has been Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia since September 2003. Upon his renewal in September 2009, he also was appointed as UBC's Vice Provost Health, which involves representing the University in health-related interactions with other universities and health authorities.

A native of Manitoba, he attended the University of Western Ontario for his undergraduate medical and postgraduate training in obstetrics and gynecology. He pursued a fellowship in Gynecologic Oncology at Wayne State University in Detroit, where he stayed on as a faculty member. He then moved to the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary, where he was the first Director of Gynecology. After a short period as Head of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, he was appointed as Professor and Head, Department of Oncology and Director of the Tom Baker Cancer Centre. In 1999 he was appointed as Vice-President of the Alberta Cancer Board.

As Dean since 2003, Gavin has worked with government, health authorities, and a large number of other academic partners to enhance health research in British Columbia and oversee the implementation of a provincially-based Faculty of Medicine across four campuses. He is past Chair of the Board of the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada, and was made an Honorary Alumnus of UBC Faculty of Medicine in 2009.

In addition to carrying out his duties as Vice Provost and Dean, Gavin continues to be an active teacher, clinician and researcher. His clinical research and publications have been in the area of gynecologic cancer, including population-based screening programs and the conduct of clinical trials as therapeutic interventions in gynecologic cancer.

His clinical activity is as a member of the outstanding gynecologic oncology team based at Vancouver General Hospital and the BC Cancer Agency. He is the principal investigator of an international phase III trial of the human papillomavirus vaccine. Dr. Stuart has held multiple leadership positions in the field: past Chair of the Gynecologic Cancer Intergroup, leading international trials with several national cooperative groups; past Co-Chair of the Gynecology Site Committee of the NCI Canada; and past President of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology/La Societe de Gyneco-Oncologie du Canada (GOC). In 2009, Dr. Stuart received the Presidential Medal Award from the GOC.

Gavin has been active in leadership roles in many national and U.S. committees on medical education, health human resource planning and evidence-based guideline development. In 2010, he was elected to the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. Dr. Stuart has been a member of LifeLabs' Board of Directors since February 2010.


Annesley Wallace

Annesley Wallace, M.Sc. (Eng), M.B.A., P. Eng. is Managing Director, Asset Management at Borealis Infrastructure

In this role, Annesley is a Director on the Boards of Bruce Power, Midland Cogeneration Venture (MCV), Enersource and LifeLabs. Annesley holds a Bachelor of Science (Mechanical Engineering) degree and a Master of Science (Mechanical and Materials Engineering) degree from Queen's University, as well as a Master of Business Administration degree from the Schulich School of Business at York University. She is also a registered Professional Engineer in Ontario.

Previously, as Vice-President, Operations at SNC-Lavalin, Annesley was responsible for engineering, procurement, project controls and project management for the Energy and Infrastructure business, which executes work in multiple sectors including power, industrial, chemicals and petroleum and renewable energy. Prior to that role she was the Director of Strategy & Special Projects for SNC-Lavalin's Global Power group, bringing extensive experience in multiple sectors including nuclear and thermal power, transmission & distribution, industrial and renewable energy. Annesley coordinated strategy and marketing initiatives for all SNC-Lavalin’s Global Power business units, and was responsible for developing SNC-Lavalin’s Global Power strategy. Annesley also evaluated and reviewed potential mergers and acquisitions for the Global Power group.


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