Evening Event Speakers

Star Staff LogoCarol Goar (moderator) has been a reporter, editor and columnist for more than 30 years.

She spent the first phase of her working life in the nation’s capital as a member of the parliamentary press gallery. She moved from the Ottawa Citizen to Canadian Press to Maclean’s magazine and finally to the Toronto Star which became her journalistic home.

In the mid-1990s, she moved to Washington as the Star’s bureau chief for the United States. When her posting ending, she returned to Toronto as an editorial writer, then became editorial page editor.

She is now a columnist writing three times a week about politics, social justice, the voluntary/non-profit sector and a wide range of policy issues. Her aim is to shine a light in dark places and salute people who roll their sleeves to make Canada a better place.

DonAbelsonDr. Don Abelson is Professor and Chair, Department of Political Science, at The University of Western Ontario where he specializes in American Politics and US foreign policy. He is the author of several books, including A Capitol Idea: Think Tanks & US Foreign Policy (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2006) and Do Think Tanks Matter? Assessing the Impact of Public Policy Institutes, Second Edition (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2009), which has been translated into both Arabic and Simplified Chinese. He is currently completing a book entitled, Northern Exposure: Revealing the Canadian Think Tank Landscape which will also be published by McGill-Queen’s University Press. His work has also appeared in over four dozen journals and edited collections. In addition to his teaching and research interests, Dr. Abelson is a regular commentator on radio and television stations throughout North America and Europe.

Mary Babic 001Sister Mary Babic is a sister of the Congregation of Our Lady of Sion. She is trained as an educator and has worked at both elementary and secondary levels, in regular as well as special education, adult, ESL and alternative education settings, with at-risk, street involved youth and teenagers and in community development projects with First Nations peoples, refugees and immigrants. She has studied and holds Bachelor Degrees of Arts, of Education, a Masters in Theological Studies and is completing a Certificate in Conflict Management, Mediation and faith-based Community Leadership. She has lived and worked in Toronto, Winnipeg, and Brooklyn NY, in the UK and in Argentina. She now works at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Toronto. Through her work she engages in community and faith development, is involved in social outreach and advocacy and feels keenly the challenge and joy of the biblical call to celebrate and work towards dignity, freedom, and right relations for all.

Photo G FoxGraham Fox is President and CEO of the Institute for Research on Public Policy (IRPP) – a national, independent, non-partisan think tank headquartered in Montreal.  Prior to joining the IRPP in 2011, Graham was a strategic policy adviser at the law firm of Fraser Milner Casgrain (now Dentons LLP).  He is a former vice-president of the Public Policy Forum and executive director of the KTA Centre for Collaborative Government.  In politics, Graham contested the 2007 Ontario general election as a candidate in the constituency of Ottawa-Orléans. He was chief of staff to the Rt. Hon. Joe Clark, and an adviser to Members of Parliament.  In 1998, he served as press secretary to the Hugh Segal campaign for the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada.

A policy entrepreneur, Graham’s research interests include parliamentary reform, democratic renewal and citizen engagement. He holds an undergraduate degree in history from Queen’s University, where he was a Loran scholar, and a master’s degree in political science from the London School of Economics.

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