Skip navigation

Social Innovation Summit

Social Innovation Summit, presented by Vancity

Social Innovation Summit

Surrey City Hall, 13450 104 Ave

Date & Time:
November 23, 2016
8:00 AM - 2:00 PM




2016-11-23 08:00:00 2016-11-23 14:00:00 America/Vancouver Social Innovation Summit Transform our times by engaging in the 2nd annual Surrey Social Innovation Summit. Surrey City Hall, 13450 104 Ave

Transforming Our Times: Social Innovations that Change People, Places and Priorities

Wednesday, November 23, 2016
8am to 2pm, Surrey City Hall

Register now for the Surrey Social Innovation Summit

Register for the 2016 Social Innovation Summit and be part of social change in Surrey. The 2nd Annual Social Innovation Summit will continue on conversations from the 2015 Surrey Social Innovation Summit and the Social Innovation Leaders Breakfast Series in the search for better solutions to some of the significant issues that face today's urban centres.

About the Summit

Presented by the City of Surrey, and building on the success of the 2015 summit, this year’s meeting features more than a dozen sessions and two dozen speakers and presenters.

Whether it’s new ways to engage communities, health technologies that provide tools for social innovation, developing local economies, growing people with urban agriculture, putting technologies to work in aboriginal communities, or funding great ideas that work, this year’s summit takes a deep dive into social innovation solutions to some of our most pressing community issues.

For more information, contact

City of Surrey Social Innovation Summit Agenda 2016

Time Session Location
7:30am Registration Opens Atrium, City Hall
7:30am - 8:15am

Networking Breakfast

Atrium, City Hall
8:15am - 8:30am Welcome Remarks Council Chambers, City Hall
8:30am - 9:15am

Opening Plenary - Transforming Our Times: The Case for Social Innovation

“All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.” It’s been almost two centuries since German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer penned those words, but they still ring true today, particularly when it comes to the wave of social innovation moving across countries and cultures. The opening plenary of the second annual Surrey Social Innovation Summit features a preview of the day ahead, with an emphasis on the future of social innovation and its capacity to apply unique solutions to long-standing social problems

Moderator: Al Etmanski, Author, community organizer and social innovator


  • William Azaroff, VP of Community Investment, Vancity
  • Hazel Borys, Managing Principal, PlaceMakers
  • Michael H. Shuman, Board Member, Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE)
Council Chambers, City Hall
9:15am - 9:30am  Transition (Refreshments served) Atrium, City Hall
9:30am-10:15am Concurrent Breakout Sessions  
9:30am - 10:15am

Session 1 - Champions of Change: Engaging Communities, Building a Movement

Change for the better, particularly when it comes to complex and persistent social issues, needs more than just a great idea. It requires risk taking, new ways of thinking and the capacity and willingness to build new networks of support and collaboration. With an eye to providing “how to” details, panelists will highlight the formula for creating successful movements and generating broad community engagement that can tackle old issues with new approaches.

Moderator: Shawn Smith, Director, RADIUS, Simon Fraser University


  • David Dalley, Community Advocate
  • Ajay Puri, Cofounder, ChangeMakers Vancouver
  • Sarah Schulman, Partner, InWithForward
  Session 2 - Philanthropy, Foundations and Investing in Social Innovation

Across British Columbia and Canada, foundations have become leaders in supporting and financing social innovation. Whether it’s through social finance, impact investing or targeted philanthropy, each foundation has its own particular priorities and funding models.

Moderator: Liz Lougheed Green, Director of Business and Community Development, Vancity


  • Kevin McCort, President & CEO, Vancouver Foundation
  • Darcy Riddell, Director of Strategic Learning, J.W. McConnell Family Foundation
  • Mary Ellen Schaafsma, Director, Social Innovation and Research, United Way
  Session 3 - From Drawing Board to Reality: Innovative Approaches that Build and Brand Better Neighbourhoods and Cities

It all starts with being free “to change the default setting” when it comes to designing and creating neighbourhoods and communities. Bolstered by the community’s empowerment of a free market, partnerships and accountability, the result is the greatest possible returns on investments of money, sweat and time.

Introduction: Preet Heer, Community Planning Manager, City of Surrey


  • Hazel Borys, Managing Principal, PlaceMakers
  • Grant Murray, Senior Vice President, Sales, Concord Pacific
10:15am-10:30am Transition (Refreshments Served) Atrium, City Hall
10:30am-11:15am Concurrent Breakout Sessions  

Session 4  - Generating Social Innovation: People Partnerships and the Evolution of Ideas and Inventions

At its heart, social innovation is rooted in the drive to see positive change in people, places and priorities. So, what’s the catalyst for collaboration and how do people, communities, government and business generate, nurture, evolve and implement the sort of socially innovative ideas that can tackle issues as diverse as poverty, climate change, addiction and livable communities?

Moderator: Stephen Dooley, Executive Director, SFU Surrey


  • Vickie Cammack, Senior Fellow - Social Innovation Generation
  • Al Etmanski, Author, Community Organizer and Social Innovator
  • Darcy Riddell, Director of Strategic Learning, J.W. McConnell Family Foundation
  • David Young, Chief Executive Officer, Sources Community Resource Centres

Session 5 - Local Living Economies: Principles and Practices for Prosperous Communities

At its core, economic localism is about building communities that are healthy, equitable and regenerative, all backed by resilient local economies. While it can start with something as simple as buying locally, its success rests with reconnecting communities with its entrepreneurs, investors, farmers and local business owners, as well as an understanding that we’re all in this together, and that we’re all better off, when we are all better off.

Introduction: Donna Jones, GM, Investment & Intergovernmental Relations, City of Surrey


Michael H. Shuman, Board Member, Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE)

Session 6 - Aboriginal Social Innovation: People, Potential and Prosperity

Whether it’s creating new urban partnerships, accessing technology to build capacity, or giving young entrepreneurs a launching pad, social innovation in aboriginal communities is key to changing lives for the better. In a collective culture that has been socially innovating for thousands of years, what’s needed to scale up solutions to persistent social issues among aboriginal British Columbians?

Moderator: Sheldon Tetreault, Partner, Sheldon Tetreault Consulting


  • Derek Hansom, Research Lead, Stó:lō Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Project - RADIUS Ventures
  • Leslie Varley, Executive Director, BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres
  • Denise Williams, Executive Director, First Nations Technology Council

Session 7 - From Housing to Homes: Building Solutions with Social Innovation

Few topics cut across as many demographics, or social issues, as housing. From affordability and supply, to housing for special populations, a roof over your head is something all of us can relate to, and for many of today’s core social issues, creative housing solutions are key.

Moderator: Doug Tennant, Executive Director, Semiahmoo House Society


  • Robert Brown, President, Catalyst Community Development Services
  • Tiffany Duzita, Director of Development, CLTF BC's Director of Development
  • Jon Stovell, President, Reliance Properties Ltd.
11:15am-11:30am Transition (Refreshments served) Atrium, City Hall
11:30am-12:15pm Concurrent Breakout Sessions  
  Session 8 – Art, Creativity & Placemaking that Transforms Communities

The very best communities and neighbourhoods are much more than their bricks and mortar. Today, placemaking leverages the power of the arts, culture and creativity to shape change, growth and the transformation of communities such as Surrey.

Moderator: Hazel Borys, Managing Principal, PlaceMakers


Mark Busse, Director, Creativity + Engagement, HCMA Architecture + Design

Tim Jones, Chief Executive Officer, Artscape

Session 9 - Capital Ideas: Financing Social Innovation

It’s no secret that getting a good idea off the drawing board and turning it into reality requires capital and a financial commitment. At the same time, any kind of innovation, social or otherwise, implies risk. Finding practical solutions to that risk-reward conundrum is at the heart of financing social innovation.

Moderator: Liz Lougheed Green, Director of Business and Community Development, Vancity


  • William Azaroff, VP of Community Investment, Vancity
  • Andy Broderick, Managing Director, New Market Funds
  • Jill Earthy, Chief Growth Officer, FrontFundr
  • Patrick Nangle, Chief Executive Officer, MODO

Session 10: Make Yourself at Home: New Canadians, Communities and the Economy

When new immigrants prosper, communities prosper. Guided by that fundamental truth, the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) brings leaders together who are committed to helping immigrants and employers succeed. For more than 10 years, TRIEC has been helping employers make the most of the Greater Toronto Area’s culturally diverse workforce, while working with immigrants to connect to employment that fully leverages their skills and talents.

Introduction: Anita Huberman, CEO Surrey Board of Trade, Co-Chair Local Immigration Partnership


Beth Clarke,  Acting Executive Director and Director, Employer Programs, Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC)

Session 11: Growing People, Growing Communities: Jobs that Change Lives

It’s long been said that a job is the best social program. Not just because it provides a pay cheque, but because work connects us to each other and our communities. Social innovation on the job front, particularly when it comes to providing meaningful employment to marginalized members of the community, has the potential to change both lives and our communities.

Moderator: Mike Starchuk, Councillor, City of Surrey


  • Janice Abbott, Chief Executive Officer, ATIRA Women's Resource Society
  • Sean Condon, Founder, Megaphone & Social Enterprise Developer, Vancity Community Foundation
  • John Volken, Founder, John Volken Academy
12:15pm-1:00pm Networking Lunch Atrium, City Hall

Closing Plenary

Moderator:  Shawn Smith, Director, RADIUS, Simon Fraser University


  • Al Etmanski, Author, Community Organizer and Social Innovator
  • Vera LeFranc, Councillor, City of Surrey
  • Ajay Puri, Cofounder, ChangeMakers Vancouver
Council Chambers, City Hall

Closing Remarks

  • Vera LeFranc, Councillor, City of Surrey
  • Stephen Dooley, Executive Director, SFU Surrey
  • David Laulainen, Director, Communications & Marketing, Century Group
Council Chambers, City Hall
2:00pm End of Day  


Presenting Sponsor

Breakfast Sponsor


Luncheon Sponsor                              
SFU Beedie School of Business        

Session Sponsors
 KPU Kwantlen Polytechnic University                   
Community Sponsors
Century Group and Fraser Surrey Docks