We are Canada's home for democratic innovation and public strategy. Since 2007, MASS has led some of the country's most original and ambitious efforts to engage citizens in tackling tough policy choices while pioneering the use of Civic Lotteries and Citizens' Reference Panels on behalf of forward-thinking governments.
Fundamentally, we believe in people. Given the opportunity to participate in a thorough, fair, and inclusive process, citizens are ready to provide constructive advice, offering officials the intelligence, perspective, and sensitivity that difficult public issues require.
To date, MASS has conducted thirty-four major reference panels, citizens' assemblies, and commissions for governments involving more than 1,000 Canadians, and reaching 350,000 households. Cumulatively, this represents some 30,000 hours of deliberation on significant public issues, making MASS an internationally-recognized and unparalleled leader in the design and delivery of deliberative processes for government.
In addition, we provide a range of services to public sector organizations, including strategic planning and communications, custom research, facilitation and hosting, as well as event coordination and logistics.
Meet our team
Principal and Founder
Director of Civic Lotteries
Project Coordinator / Writer
Director of Research and Learning
Alumni and friends:
MASS is fortunate to have worked with many great people through the years, as staff, researchers and associates. We're proud of the careers our former colleagues are building and to count them as part of our extended family. Since 2007, there have been almost fifty staff, facilitators, and associates, and more than 40 interns who have made MASS their home. Learn more.
George Gosbee, Co-founder
George Gosbee was the Chairman, President and CEO of AltaCorp Capital Inc., an investment bank that he founded in 2010. Before AltaCorp, George was Chairman, President & CEO at Tristone Capital Global Inc., a global investment firm that he founded. He left Tristone in 2009 after it was purchased by Macquarie Bank. George was an Alternate Governor on the National Hockey Leagues Board of Governors, and he was the Co-owner of the Arizona Coyotes. He was a Director and past Chairman of the School of Public Policy at the University of Calgary, past Chairman of the Board for the Alberta College of Art and Design, and past Director of the Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta. George was also a Director and former Vice Chair of Alberta Investment Management Co (AIMCO) in Edmonton, a former board member of Chrysler Group LLC in Detroit, and a former advisor on the Government of Canada's Economic Advisory Council. George was named by the World Economic Forum as one of 200 Young Global Leaders, he received the Haskayne School of Business' Distinguished Alumni Award, he was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year for the Prairie Region by Ernst and Young, and he was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal by the Premier of Alberta.
Dana Granofsky, CSO (2010-2014)
Dana Granofsky has extensive experience in event and office management, community development, and small-business entrepreneurship. She has a strong interest in adult education and literacy and worked with the YWCA to develop Words for Women, an adult literacy program. She also co-founded the St. Henri Community Language Exchange, a free service that brings together adults in this low-income Montreal community to improve their French and English language skills. In 2003, she founded the telecommunications company Univocal Communications Inc., sold in 2006. Dana holds degrees in history and political science from Concordia University, and a Master's degree in political science from the University of British Columbia, where she wrote on the potential of deliberative democracy to resolve conflicts in multicultural societies.
Morwenna Marwah, Director, Communications and Planning (2009-2013)
Morwenna Marwah graduated from the University of Toronto with a degree in French Literature before moving to Paris, where she lived and worked for three years. She developed a strong background in bilingual communications and event management working for IBM and Starbucks and smaller non-profit agencies, including the Historica Foundation of Canada. She has executed local and national media campaigns, worked closely with Canadian dignitaries from Newfoundland to Nunavut, and is the features editor for an online design publication. In recent years, Morwenna has also taken up fencing, she has led an anti-packaging campaign, and she has hiked through Corsica. Morwenna has also been a member of Guiding for over twenty years.
Chi Nguyen, Director, Participation and Process (2007-2010)
Chi Nguyen has fifteen years of experience in developing community-based programs primarily for young women, including the McGill Women in House program, Young Women Vote: the 20,000 Project, and The Little Black Book: A Guide to Sexual Health for Grrrls by Grrrls (Annick Press, 2006, 2nd ed.). Chi has also worked with the Citizenship Foundation, the National Association of Women and the Law, the Toronto Women's City Alliance, and as political staff to Dr. Carolyn Bennett, MP, St. Paul’s. She also serves on the board of the Canadian Women's Health Network. A recipient of the 2004 Governor General's Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case, Chi holds an MSc from the London School of Economics in Health, Community, and Development.
John Grant, Director, Research and Learning (2007-2008)
John Grant has a PhD in political theory from the University of London. He has a special interest in participative research methodologies and has explored how political principles affect social order and transformation. His research on theories of public action has been presented at international conferences in Canada, the United States and Britain. He also lectures regularly on ideology and democracy.
Joslyn Trowbridge, Director, Research and Learning (2009-2011)
Joslyn Trowbridge received her Master of Public Policy at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, Germany, where she studied democratic theory and innovation. Her research interests include deliberative democracy as a method of public decision-making, citizen engagement, and opinion-shift through learning and dialogue. She garnered significant experience in a large-scale citizen dialogue with AmericaSpeaks in Washington, D.C., and collaborated on several projects on global governance, public space, and the social determinants of health at the Hertie School. At MASS LBP, Joslyn worked with municipalities and organizations in the health care and climate change sectors. Prior to her MPP, she founded and directed a Montreal-based youth program, managed violence-prevention programs for young women at the Girls Action Foundation, and assisted her Member of Parliament in his constituency office. She has consulted on youth engagement strategies for Canadian Policy Research Networks, UN Habitat, and the McGill Institute for Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies.
Aaron Ettinger, Project Coordinator (2009-2010)
Aaron Ettinger is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science at Dalhousie University. Aaron joined MASS LBP as an intern in November 2008 and joined the staff as project coordinator in February 2009. He has worked with Elections Canada, Elections Ontario and the Centre for Elections Studies at the University of Waterloo. Aaron holds an MA and a PhD in political studies from Queen's University.
Each year we offer three paid fellowships which track the academic year. Our Fellows come from many academic backgrounds, ranging from politics and sociology, to systems design and law. We value interdisciplinarity, and our Fellows gain experience in a wide range of skills, including strategy, communications, logistics, research, facilitation, and public programming. Learn more.
Who are we looking for?
We need bright and energetic people who want to work with a company that is changing the way public decisions get made. Although there are no specific prerequisites, candidates are typically interested in some combination of current affairs, politics, sociology, law, systems design, and public policy. As well, ideal candidates will be able to thrive in an open concept workplace where people are expected to muck in, champion their ideas, and work either collaboratively or independently as required.
But will this lead to a job?
The Fellowship will prepare Fellows for their next step in their career, but will not lead to a position at MASS. The Fellowship is an opportunity for professional development, not step one in securing a staff position. Fellows will spend a portion of their time at MASS preparing to secure their next opportunity, with the support and encouragement of the MASS team.
Preparing your application: We ask all candidates to provide a CV, one letter of reference from a former employer and/or teacher/professor, a reference name that we can contact, as well as a cover letter indicating in specific detail what you would bring to MASS LBP and why you would like to work with us. Take some time to tell us about your studies and any past work or experiences that you think are relevant and match the ethos of our company. It's also helpful if you can tell us what you're thinking about current affairs, public policy, or the future of democracy.
MASS Digit Hall of Fame:
046: Bolade Shipeolu (Summer 2019)
045: Ahmed Hegazy (Winter 2019)
044: Nadia Ahmed (Autumn 2018)
043: Ty Marks (Summer 2018)
042: Giuseppe Tolfo (Summer 2018)
041: Hewot Dawit (Winter 2018)
040: Zujajah Islam (Autumn 2017)
039: Ayla Shiblaq (Summer 2017)
038: Ana Qarri (Winter 2017)
037: Alexandra Lavasidis (Autumn 2016)
036: Cadhla Gray (Summer 2016)
035: Abbas Ali (Summer 2016)
034: Zahra Syed (Winter 2016)
033: Geordie Summers-Lubar (Autumn 2015)
032: Ian Scholten (Summer 2015)
031: Kate Wilkes (Winter 2015)
030: Shirven Rezvany (Autumn 2014)
029: Zannah Matson (Summer 2014)
028: Matt Ianucci (Winter 2014)
027: Sanjay Cisiecki (Wagemark / Autumn 2013)
026: Kourtney Pratt (Autumn 2013)
025: Alanna Fennell (Summer 2013)
024: Danielle Johnston (Winter 2013)
023: Peter Wills (Autumn 2012)
022: Max Marcus (Summer 2012)
021: Jon Whitzman (Winter 2012)
020: Rodnie Allison (Autumn 2011)
019: Josh Taylor (Summer 2011)
018: Nathan Perkins (Winter 2011)
017: Jasmine Frolick (Autumn 2010)
016: Andrew Phillips (Summer 2010)
015: Dana Granofsky (Winter 2010)
014: Louise Dalsgaard (Autumn 2009)
013: Joslyn Trowbridge (Autumn 2009)
012: Brandon Thao (Autumn 2009)
011: Mahmood Mustafa (Late Summer 2009)
010: Jennifer Sacco (Summer 2009)
009: Erene Stergiopoulos (Summer 2009)
008: Justyna Werbel (Spring 2009)
007: Aaron Ettinger (Winter 2008-2009)
006: Janette Yuen (Winter 2008-2009)
005: Jean-Sebastian Blais (Autumn 2008)
004: Jordan Benadiba (Autumn 2008)
003: Michelle Granatstein (Summer 2008)
002: Alex Way (Summer 2008)
001: Patrick Baud (Autumn 2007 & Summer 2008)
A timeline of our history:
For a decade, MASS LBP has been a leading pioneer of innovative democratic processes in Canada. Find out how it all began and about the milestones along the way. Learn more.
• With funding from the Ontario Ministry of Education, the Students' Assembly on Electoral Reform launches in 2006 as a parallel process to Ontario's Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform. It provides high school students in Ontario the opportunity to contribute their perspectives on electoral reform. The Students' Assembly is a developed by Student Vote Canada, The Students' Commission, and Peter MacLeod.
• Peter gives the convocation address at the Alberta College of Art and Design and meets then-ACAD board chair and future MASS co-founder, Tristone CEO, George Gosbee.
• The Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform recommends a new Mixed Member Proportional voting system for the province; it is subsequently rejected during a provincial referendum.
• Peter and George agree to set up MASS LBP as a company to 'reinvent public consultation' and build on the precedent and experience of the Ontario and BC Citizens' Assemblies.
• In October, Chi Nguyen and John Grant join as the first hires, along with the first MASS intern, Patrick Baud.
• In May, MASS moves to its first office, a storefront at 392A King Street East, near Parliament St — an auspicious address for a democracy company.
• MASS is hired by the South East LHIN to conduct its first Civic Lottery and Citizens' Panel, recruiting 65 Kingston-area residents to develop a vision for health care in the region.
• Chris Ellis brings his direct mail expertise from the Walrus Magazine where he oversaw subscriptions and joins the team as Director of Business Development.
• Peter receives the Public Policy Forum's Emerging Leaders Award.
• Several LHINs engage MASS to run longer Reference Panels to provide citizen input to their first Health Service Plans. The Ministry of Health and Long-term Care takes notice and commissions a report on patient and public engagement.
• Joselyn Trowbridge becomes the second Director of Research as John Grant leaves to take up a teaching post at Brock University.
• The Black Deck presentation gets its debut at a AMO conference in Hamilton.
• The Northumberland Hills Hospital Citizens' Reference Panel is formed to advise on local service priorities; it earns a positive mention from the health minister at Queen's Park.
• Dana Granofsky joins MASS becoming its first and only Director of Sunshine and Operations.
• MASS launches the first major event anticipating Canada's 150th anniversary in 2017 and invites 400 people to a two-day event complete with a public concert at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.
• MASS publishes Helen Davies' Politics of Participation: Learning from Canada's Centennial Year.
• MASS hosts major events in Toronto and Vancouver for leading inequality researcher and best-selling author of the Spirit Level, Richard Wilkinson.
• Morwenna Marwah joins as the first Director of Communications.
• MASS convenes the first municipal Reference Panel for Halton Region, and follows quickly with panels for Toronto Community Housing, and a special panel addressing growing income inequality in Toronto.
• MASS provides the first of several years of programming support to YMCA Canada following the completion of its new strategic plan.
• The Citizens' Reference Panel on Ontario Health Services prompts significant interest from the province and other jurisdictions.
• MASS is commissioned to develop a panel to review Ontario's Condominium Act; amendments to the act receive all-party support in the legislature two years later.
• MASS develops a new strategic plan for the Trans Canada Trail and assists the United Way of Greater Toronto to connect with its community.
• Alex Way returns from Harvard becoming the first Director of Strategy.
• New Reference Panels tackle privacy and regional transportation investment.
• MASS hits the road with CBC to host 12 conferences across Canada marking the upcoming 150th anniversary of Confederation.
• MASS works with Vancouver Coastal Health to develop a next generation health strategy in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.
• Concerned with growing inequality, MASS launches the Wagemark Foundation.
• Danielle Johnston returns from a year in Zambia and becomes a project coordinator.
• The New Canada Conference lands in PEI welcoming 100 young Canadians who spend four days imagining the future of the country.
• Peter MacLeod gives the convocation address at Denmark's Kaospilots where he has been a long-time guest lecturer.
• Rachel Magnusson becomes our first MASS West associate; the Grandview-Woodland Citizens' Assembly is formed in Vancouver to review more than 200 land-use proposals from the city.
• A second panel is formed to project new direction to incoming regional councillors in Halton; a Reference Panel in Toronto advises the LHIN on protocols for opening the city's first supervised injection site.
• Caitlin Myles joins as the newest Director of Research.
• Working with the Community Foundations of Canada, MASS launches the 150 Alliance — with more than 500 civic and cultural organizations celebrating 2017.
• MASS hosts the first national and bilingual Reference Panel for the Mental Health Commission of Canada.
• MASS launches new panels on municipal finance in Calgary and urban planning in Toronto.
• MASS partners with the Public Policy Forum to launch Wonk Prom.
• Peter MacLeod becomes co-chair of the Wellesley Institute.
• MASS celebrates its 1000th Canadian panelist and its 250,000th civic lottery package — an international precedent.
• Alex Way becomes the first Managing Director.
• MASS moves fifty metres to its new home at 3A Gilead Place — a remarkable space owned by Agathom Architects.
• Peter MacLeod and former MPP Ron Kanter are asked by Peel Region to facilitate its governance review.
• Working with the Canadian Association of Community Living MASS develops the Vulnerable Persons Standard — a seminal contribution to the national debate on physician-assisted dying.
• MASS hosts its second national Reference Panel, this time on pharmacare, and a municipal panel on councillor employment and compensation pay in Lethbridge, Alberta.
• Adam Hasham, Joanna Massie, and Eva O'Brien join as Project Coordinators.
• MASS launches a reference panel on municipal amalgamation on Vancouver Island.
• MASS beings a long program of work with the Ministry of the Attorney-General in Ontario to develop the province’s first Community Justice Centres
• Working with the Trudeau Foundation, MASS launches the Canada's Drug Futures Forum — with more than 200 participants to discuss the future of drug legalization in Canada.
• MASS launches reference panels on airport growth and noise fairness, and regional transportation in the Greater Toronto Hamilton Area.
• Laurie Drake joins as the newest Director of Research and Learning.
• MASS joins as a founding member of the international deliberation network, Democracy R&D.
• Our work is featured in a column in the New York Times.
• “The People’s Verdict: Adding Informed Citizen Voices to Public Decision-Making” by Claudia Chwalisz is published and features case studies from MASS and the newDemocracy Foundation in Australia.
• MASS celebrates its 10th anniversary with a party, poster and special publication.
• MASS launches the second iteration of the Toronto Planning Review Panel.
• Katelynn Northam joins as Project Coordinator.
• A partnership with the Toronto Public Library leads to the launch of the award-winning “Know Your Vote” platform.
• MASS develops an extensive program of work with Sidewalk Labs that includes a fellowship, kids camp, reference panel and series of large format public meetings.
• MASS hosts its third Reference Panel for Metrolinx, and launches its second ever Standing Reference Panel — requiring a two year commitment from the residents.
• Peter MacLeod travels to Australia to give a series of talks about our work.
• The MASS internship is renamed the Gosbee Fellowship in memorial of our co-founder, George Gosbee.
• Megan Tasker joins as Office Coordinator; Rukhsaar Daya and Rosemary McManus join as Project Coordinators.
• MASS hosts the first Canadian Reference Panel on Climate Change.
• MASS runs its first french-language Reference Panel in Québec for the Montréal transit agency, ARTM.
• Peter MacLeod joins the board of the YMCA of Greater Toronto — the world’s largest YMCA.
• MASS publishes its “Nine ideas” — a list of concepts that shape our thinking and work.
What we read:
What we read shapes what we see and what we do. Often we're asked to recommend books and this prompted us to put together a list of the most important and sometimes iconoclastic books that we return to again and again. Learn more.
Christopher Alexander, The Timeless Way of Building
Ben Barber, Strong Democracy
Michael Barber, Instruction to Deliver: Fighting to Transform Britain's Public Services
Zygmunt Bauman, Liquid Modernity
Marshall Berman, All that's solid melts into air: The experience of modernity
Stewart Brand, How Buildings Learn
Mike Davis, City of Quartz
Oliver Dowlen, Sorted: Civic Lotteries and the future of public participation
Albert W. Dzur, Punishment, Participatory Democracy, and the Jury
Uffe Elbaek, Kaospilots A-Z
Stephen J. Gould, Punctuated Equilibrium
Ronald Heifetz, Leadership without Easy Answers
Ivan Illich, Deschooling Society
Ivan Illich, Tools for Conviviality
Jane Jacobs, Systems of Survival
Tony Judt, Ill Fares the land
Anne Kingston, The Edible Man: Dave Nichol, President's Choice, &
Rem Koolhaas, Delirious New York: A Retroactive Manifesto for Manhattan
George Lakoff, Moral Politics: How Liberals and Conservatives Think
Doug Lemov, Teach Like a Champion: 49 Techniques that Put Students on the Path to College
Arend Lijphart, Patterns of Democracy: Government Forms and Performance in Thirty-Six Countries
Ellen Lupton, Design, Writing, Research
Jane Mansbridge, Beyond Adversary Democracy
David Oligvy, Confessions of an Advertising Man
Hannah Pitkin, The Concept of Representation
Robert Putnam, Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community
Richard Rorty, Achieving our Country Leftist Thought in Twentieth-Century America
Peter Rowe, Civic Realism
Richardo Semler, Maverick: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace
Richard Sennett, The Fall of Public Man
Theda Skocpol, Diminished Democracy From Membership to Management in American Civic Life
Roberto Unger, Democracy Realized, the Progressive Alternative
Roberto Unger, False Necessity: Anti-Necessitarian Social Theory in the Service of Radical Democracy
Mark Warren and Hilary Pearse, Designing Deliberative Democracy: The British Columbia Citizens' Assembly
Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett, The Spirit Level: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger
Daniel Yankelovich, Coming to Public Judgment: Making Democracy Work in a Complex World
Compensation and transparency:
MASS LBP is a highly collaborative organization that we think works better and smarter when we're open and honest about money. We know the value of a dollar and the importance of conducting our business in full public view. We are fortunate to work on projects often funded with public monies and we want our clients and citizen-participants to know where we stand – and we think that includes knowing what we earn. Learn more.
Currently, directors with at least one year of service earn approximately $80,000 per year. Coordinators with at least one year of service earn approximately $60,000. The Managing Director and Principal earn approximately $90,000 and $95,000 respectively. Every three years, the MASS salary grid, which is indexed to inflation, is established collaboratively. Staff advance along the grid based on years of service. Why disclose our salaries? MASS earns the majority of its revenues from public sector contracts. Consequently, we believe it's important to be transparent about our personal incomes, and also show that we believe in actively limiting the wage ratio between our top and bottom earners.
MASS LBP processes are released under a GNU General Public License.
Peter MacLeod is the co-founder and principal of MASS LBP, and one of Canada’s leading experts in public engagement and deliberative democracy. Since its founding in 2007, MASS has completed more than 200 major policy projects for governments and public agencies across Canada while pioneering the use of Civic Lotteries and Citizen Reference Panels and earning international recognition for its work.
Peter frequently writes and speaks about the citizen’s experience of the state, the importance of public imagination, and the future of responsible government.
A graduate of the University of Toronto and Queen’s University, he is an Action Canada fellow (2003) and a recipient of the Public Policy Forum’s Emerging Leaders Award (2008). In 2013, he launched Wagemark, the first international wage certification standard aimed at reducing workplace pay disparities while promoting corporate competitiveness. He was also appointed to serve on the Ontario government’s open government task force. He is the past chair of Toronto’s Wellesley Institute for Urban Health, and currently serves on the boards of Tides Canada, an environmental charity, as well as the Environics Institute and the YMCA of Greater Toronto. He is also an adjunct lecturer at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto.
Caitlin provides in-house research and analytic skills at MASS. Most recently she has worked on projects for the Toronto Arts Council, the Trans Canada Trail Foundation, the Mental Health Commission of Canada, and the Government of Ontario. Caitlin is passionate about the use of new open technologies and the prospect for grassroots social change - interests that arose from her work in international development. In 2014, Caitlin completed an MSc at the University of Oxford in Social Science of the Internet, where she wrote her thesis on a crowd-mapping application that enables women to report instances of sexual harassment and assault in Egypt.
Previously, Caitlin worked with the Think Tank Initiative at the International Development Research Centre in Ottawa, driving their efforts to better track and evaluate their grantees’ work. She has also worked with community organizations in Zanzibar, Tanzania, as an Aga Khan Foundation Canada International Development Management Fellow, and with microcredit recipients in the Dominican Republic. Caitlin also holds an MA in Economics from the University of Western Ontario and a BSc in Physics and International Development Studies from McGill University. She brings strong quantitative and analytics skills to the MASS team from her background in science and economics, and she is also fluent in French and Spanish.
Alex Way is the managing director and works with clients to develop more collaborative approaches to decision-making. He is a graduate of the Trudeau Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Toronto and Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, where he completed his Master in Public Policy as the Pforzheimer Non-Profit Fellow. While at Harvard, he also completed research for the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation. He has worked as a community organizer for a social service agency in Toronto's inner suburbs, as a support worker in northern First Nations communities and with youth groups in East and Southern Africa, and as an advisor to foundations focused on economic inclusion. Alex has led many high profile projects while at MASS, including a Health Strategy for Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, digital privacy rules for the BC government, responses to patient safety incidents in Ontario hospitals, transportation funding for Metrolinx, condominium law in Ontario, radioactive waste remediation and disposal for AECL, Health Quality Ontario’s Patient Engagement Framework, United Way Toronto’s strategic plan, and a new national action plan for the Mental Health Commission of Canada.
Chris Ellis is Director of Civic Lotteries where he has pioneered and professionalized the use of sortition, or in MASS LBP's parlance, Civic Lotteries. The Civic Lottery is a tried tested and true approach to convening groups of randomly-selected residents. Under his stewardship, more than 1000+ Canadians have been selected and enjoyed the opportunity to provide insights to government. Chris is also reponsible for the development of the Civic Lottery guidebook, which is based on his expierence managing 40+ Lotteries. Chris is the former Director of Circulation and Marketing for The Walrus magazine, Canada's premiere magazine of ideas and culture. He holds a Masters degree in Publishing from Simon Fraser University, and an Honours degree in History and General Economics from Wilfrid Laurier University. He is a longtime volunteer in Toronto, serving several local organizations.
Rachel is the Director of MASS West and has been a senior facilitator with MASS in both BC and Ontario since 2008. Most recently, she was Chair of the Grandview-Woodland Citizens Assembly for the City of Vancouver, and led the Citizens Commission on Municipal Infrastructure in Calgary. Rachel has a PhD in Political Science from York University, and has a Bachelor’s of Education from the University of Toronto. She is a former researcher at the Centre for the Study of Democracy at Queen's University and at Sarai: the New Media Initiative in Delhi, India. Her academic research focuses on democratic engagement, and is inspired by her work in the field.
Rachel is a passionate educator, with extensive experience as a teacher. She has taught high school in Toronto, worked as an educator and facilitator for the YMCA, taught courses for the School of Environmental studies at the University of Victoria, and currently teaches courses on democratic theory and public engagement at Simon Fraser University. Over the past 15 years, Rachel has also been involved in community work as a support worker for a crisis phone line, a disability advocate, an organizer for youth engagement initiatives, and an event coordinator for an international film festival.
Adam Hasham is a project coordinator at MASS, where he supports project management, data analysis, and program design. His efforts ensure that projects run smoothly, allowing clients and citizen participants the comfort to focus on their recommendations. In his time at MASS, Adam's projects have included a Citizens' Reference Panel on Pharmacare, Canada's Drug Futures Forum, the Toronto Planning Review Panel, and a Residents' Reference Panel on the Regional Transportation Plan for Metrolinx.
Adam holds a Bachelor of Civil Engineering from McGill University, where he was a Loran Scholar. While at McGill, Adam’s research involved the analysis of geospatial transit emissions data, and the design and financing of urban infrastructure in Toronto and Montréal. Adam draws on this experience, distilling complex technical processes and policies into clear concepts for use during engagement activities. Through former roles at Engineers Without Borders Canada, the Government of Ontario, and the UNESCO World Heritage Site in Zanzibar, Tanzania, Adam has led corporate partnerships for Canada’s largest social innovation conference, coordinated provincial advocacy campaigns, evaluated an international impact investment process, and conducted historical and financial analysis into public assets in Ontario.
Eva O'Brien is a project coordinator at MASS, where she is responsible for project management and logistics, citizen outreach, and some of the behind-the-scenes operations work that makes MASS function. In her time at MASS, she has managed local and national consultations on issues ranging from airport growth, to prescription drug coverage, to community health. Eva is sensitive to the unique needs of participants in public engagement exercises. She works to ensure participants are given the support and tools they need to contribute in a meaningful way, and that they face no accessibility barriers to participating.
Eva came to MASS with a background in community development, large-scale event logistics, and publishing and communications at HackerYou, House of Anansi Press and Groundwood Books. In her previous work, she organized and ran large community engagement processes and small-scale working events, planned and executed nation-wide marketing campaigns, and developed and managed an engaged student and alumni community at Toronto’s first coding school. Eva has a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in History and Political Studies from Queen’s University. She currently sits on the board of Planned Parenthood Toronto.
Shane Pointe (Ti’te-in) is a highly respected Musqueam community member, ceremonial traditional speaker and cultural educator, and he is a proud member of the Musqueam and Coast Salish people. Shane has advised MASS and provided support and counsel to panel and event participants on projects including the Citizens’ Reference Panel on the Mental Health Action Plan for Canada and the Grandview-Woodland Community Plan Citizens’ Assembly in East Vancouver.
Shane provides protocol and ceremonial guidance for local, national, and international cultural events. He has worked in various capacities, including Aboriginal Support Worker, Trial Support Coordinator for the Indian Residential School Survivors Society, Native Alcohol and Drug Awareness Program worker with the Musqueam Indian Band, in the Longhouse Leadership Program at the First Nations House of Learning (University of British Columbia), and most recently providing support as an Elder Advisor to the Aboriginal Mothers Centre.
Katelynn is a project coordinator at MASS where she works on project logistics and participant support and outreach. She brings a passion for helping people have more of a say in the decisions that impact them, and her past work has focused on helping broad and diverse groups of stakeholders to take collective action on the biggest issues of our time.
Prior to joining MASS, Katelynn worked in advocacy on issues related to democratic reform and renewal. She oversaw national engagement strategies on a variety of public policy issues. She was primarily responsible for strategy, project management, and communications on democracy-related campaigns with Leadnow, and worked with the organization to organize large scale, national online and offline engagement strategies to help people collectively shape their futures. She also worked with groups like the Springtide Collective to develop toolkits and plain-language educational materials explaining the political process. She has training in event facilitation and design, and has delivered dozens of workshops and trainings on community organizing and democratic reform.
Katelynn has a Master of Arts in Political Science from Dalhousie University.
Laurie is the director of research and learning. With strong research skills and an interest in learning she helps clients make complex policy issues accessible and engaging for the public. She can quickly assess the intellectual landscape of many issues to develop unbiased programming and balanced curriculum that support citizen engagement and improve policy development.
Since joining MASS, Laurie has co-hosted and facilitated a day-long session on the attitudes and aspirations of Canadians in Quebec City and was also the French-language facilitator for the Citizens’ Reference Panel on Pharmacare in Canada. Laurie is also an experienced project manager and facilitator. She worked closely with the YMCAs of Quebec to successfully launch their first eCommerce website, and designed training manuals and workshops that were used throughout the organization to support this transition. She has also designed curriculum and taught a wide variety of courses at both the high school and university level. She also works as a Teaching Assistant Trainer at the University of Toronto, where she facilitates workshops on effective pedagogy and accessible curriculum design.
Laurie is currently a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto where she conducts qualitative and archival research, and writes in both English and French.
Joanna joins MASS LBP with a background in policy, public engagement, project management and communications. At MASS, Joanna uses this experience to ensure projects run successfully and effectively, that the right information is presented to the right audiences, and that people have the tools to host the most productive discussions. Joanna has managed local consultations and large-scale events for MASS clients on a range of issues, including municipal amalgamation, provincial amateur sport policy, and airport planning. Joanna aims to create an environment where all contributors, including participants and speakers, feel assured and confident.
Before joining MASS, Joanna worked for a UK-based think tank, The RSA. She was the founding member of the Engagement Team, where she oversaw public participation in public service and community policy development, and supported local projects to achieve funding and growth. She has worked in policy and communications roles in think tanks for a number of years. Joanna has a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Social Policy from the University of York, United Kingdom.
Rosemary McManus is a project coordinator and writer at MASS, where she helps shape communications and supports project management and program design. She brings to MASS a belief that a community is best understood not as a static collection of city blocks or boundary lines, but as a continuous act of creation by those who live in it.
Prior to joining MASS, Rosemary brought her writing and research skills to diverse not-for-profit organizations—from the Sierra Club to the Biblical Archaeology Society—in her hometown of Washington, DC. She spent several years as an adult education teacher in Thailand and North America before returning to her roots in nonprofits with the Samara Centre for Democracy. For the past decade, Rosemary has worked as a freelance writer for a wide range of clients including Vice, Cablevision, and the Kikkoman Corporation.
Rosemary has a Master of Arts in Literature from the University of Toronto.
At MASS, Rukhsaar is responsible for project management, logistics, and participant outreach. She ensures that all project components are successfully executed on time and on budget, working closely with the rest of the project team so that clients are supported with the tools they need. Rukhsaar comes to MASS with a background in citizen engagement and health policy innovation. Working locally is what matters most to Rukhsaar. In her previous work, she worked closely with vulnerable communities to co-create programs and solutions that better serve their needs.
Rukhsaar holds a Master of Science in Global Health from McMaster University with a specialization completed at Maastricht University, Netherlands in implementing innovations on a global scale. She also holds an Honours Bachelor of Health Science from the University of Western Ontario.
Megan Tasker, bio to come.