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Canadian Committee Biographies

Trevor Bingler is the Director of the Municipal Finance Policy Branch at the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing. His branch is responsible for providing finance expertise to municipalities, Municipal Services Offices and other ministries. Some of the initiatives he oversees include: leading the implementation of tangible capital asset accounting (PSAB 3150); administering the Annual Repayment Limit; supporting the ministry's Open For Business agenda; and providing ongoing direction on revenue policy, economic development tools, debt and investment instruments, and development charges.

Prior to assuming this role, he served the Ontario government at Cabinet Office and the Ontario Growth Secretariat. While at the Growth Secretariat he played a key role in developing the Planning for Employment in the Greater Golden Horseshoe background paper in support of the Places to Grow Act. He obtained a Master of Public Administration degree with a specialization in local government management from the University of Western Ontario. While at Western, his MPA thesis examined alternative sources of revenue available to municipalities.

Trevor is a member of the GFOA Committee on Canadian Issues and sits on the Standards Task Force. He is also a member of the Municipal Finance Officers Association of Ontario.


 

Marlys Bilanski is the General Manager of Corporate Services at the City of Saskatoon in the Province of Saskatchewan, a position she has held since 2005.  She is a member of the senior management team and is responsible for the overall management and leadership of all aspects of the finance function, information technology and services, and administrative support services within the Corporation. 

Marlys received her Certified Management Accountant (CMA) designation in 1988 and her fellowship in 2004.  Marlys has worked for the City for 32 years in a number of financial positions.  Prior to becoming General Manager, Marlys held both the City Comptroller and Budget Manager positions. Marlys became a member of the Saskatchewan GFOA in 1994 and was a member of the Western Canadian GFOA Executive during 2000-2003.  Marlys has also been involved with her professional organization since 1989, including President of CMA Canada (Saskatchewan) from 2002 to 2004 as well as Chair of a number of committees.


 

Carl Bird is the Director, Corporate Services for the Municipal Corporation of the City of Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories. Corporate Services is responsible for Capital and Operating Budget preparation, Municipal Taxation and Property Assessment, a full range of financial services including: financial accounting and reporting; accounts receivable; accounts payable; utility billing; and collections. Additionally, Carl oversees the purchasing and general stores operations, risk management and insurance and all aspects of Information Technology Services.

Prior to joining the City, Carl was the Director of Corporate Services for the Department of Executive of the GNWT for 9 years and Manager of Corporate Reporting and Collections for 3 years during which time he was a key member of a team that negotiated the Division of Assets and Liabilities between the NWT and the new territory of Nunavut in April 1999. Carl spent 18 years in the Canadian Navy as a Naval Supply Officer and Comptroller until 1996.

Carl is a Certified General Accountant and has been a member of GFOA since joining the City of Yellowknife in 2008. Carl is also a participant in the Western Canada GFOA.


 

Robert Bishop is the Director of Finance and City Treasurer for the City of St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador.  He is responsible for all financial and accounting matters for the City which provides all the usual municipal services to its citizens and to much of the surrounding region through a series of cooperation agreements taking in such areas as the provision of treated water, waste water treatment and disposal, fire protection and public transit.

He is a Chartered Accountant and worked for the Provincial government for two years prior to coming with the City. Prior to that he worked in public practice with responsibility for many public and private sector clients.


 

Catherine Brubacher is the Treasurer for the City of Brantford, a single tier municipality located in Southern Ontario with a population of 95,000 and an annual operating budget of $260 million.  She is responsible for financial reporting, operating and capital budgets, general accounting, payroll, tax, procurement, tax and utility billings and is a member of the City's Senior Management Team.  

Prior to joining the City of Brantford in 2000, Catherine held various positions with the municipalities of Cambridge, Milton, and Mississauga over a 23 year municipal career.  She has been a member of the GFOA since 2003, and member of MFOA since 2000.

Catherine holds a Honours Bachelor of Business Administration from Wilfrid Laurier University and a is a Certified Management Accountant.


 

Cindy Fernandes is the Manager of Finance and Administrative Services for the Community Services Department of the City of Winnipeg, the largest city in Manitoba with a population of over 690,000.  The Community Services Department provides the public services of Recreation, Library, By-law Enforcement, and Animal Services where Cindy is responsible for leading or supporting all strategic inter and intra departmental public service delivery initiatives, business process reviews, and restructuring initiatives as a member of the department’s senior management team.  She is also responsible for the overall control and management of the financial aspects for the Department including financial reporting and performance measurement, general accounting (accounts receivable and payables), cash management, financial impact analysis, business case development, financial modeling and analysis, forecasting, and the Department’s capital and operating budget that exceeds $160 million.

Cindy has worked for the City of Winnipeg for over 20 years attaining financial experience with corporate financial systems, local improvements, realty and business taxation, other related municipal revenue streams, and operating and capital budget development.

Cindy holds a Certified Management Accounting (CMA) designation (1995) and a Bachelor of Commerce (Hon) degree from the University of Manitoba (1991).  She is currently working towards a Masters in Municipal Leadership through York University and is a member of the Western Canadian GFOA.


 

Suzanne Fillion is the Manager of Financial Services at the City of Surrey, the second largest city in British Columbia with a population of over 485,000.  The City of Surrey is a rapidly growing and changing organization, with many initiatives under way. In addition to Suzanne’s regular responsibilities, which include general oversight of all finance related activities as well as specific oversight of payroll along with property tax and utility billing and collections and bylaw collections, she is actively involved in various corporate initiatives.  Currently those initiatives include providing oversight and direction for the new financial system implementation which will go live in the summer of 2013 and providing input and guidance in many aspects of the planning for the move to the new City Hall which will open in the fall of 2013. 

Suzanne is a Certified General Accountant and holds a Master Degree in Business Administration. She has been a member of GFOA since she came to Local Government in 1998 and has been on the Board of Directors of GFOA BC since 2007.  Suzanne has also been actively involved in presenting at several GFOABC training opportunities.  Prior to joining the City of Surrey in 1998, Suzanne spent 17 years in the health care sector. 


 

Bruce Fisher is the Manager of Financial Policy and Planning for the Halifax Regional Municipality.  As such, he is responsible for providing strategic financial advice for the Region – a $750 million organization.

Since joining the Halifax Regional Municipality in 1996 he has served in a series of positions including Budget Coordinator, Senior Financial Consultant, Manager of Financial Planning and as Acting Chief Financial Officer.  He has been deeply involved in many key financial policies including debt policy, budgeting, property tax structure, tax reform and low income tax relief programs. 

Previously he was been employed by the Federal Department of Industry and the Nova Scotia Department of Finance.  He has acted as an expert witness for the Nova Scotia Utility Review Board and has lectured in financial management for Dalhousie’s School of Public Administration.  Recently, he served as a volunteer with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, advising municipal governments in Sri Lanka and the Ukraine.  Bruce is a member of the GFOA, where he sits on the Committee on Canadian Issues

He is a graduate of the University of Kings College and Dalhousie University with a Masters of Public Administration (MPA).  He is also a Certified Management Accountant (CMA).


 

Teresa Florizone is the Controller at the City of Regina.  Regina has a population of approximately 200,000 people, with a combined city operating and capital budget of over $500 million.  Teresa has twenty years financial management experience with ten of these years in a municipal environment holding a variety of different roles with diverse responsibilities including city budget, internal and external financial reporting, utility billing, procurement and corporate accounting.  Currently, Teresa is responsible for the financial governance including policies and risk management.  Recent undertakings involve creating an internal risk assessment and audit office, the development of a public-private partnership framework, asset management framework, and research of alternative revenue opportunities.

Teresa is a Certified Management Accountant (CMA), where she achieved the gold medal award.  She has served on several committees and boards across Saskatchewan over a number years.  Teresa is involved with the local Saskatchewan GFOA where she held the positions of president and vice-president roles.  She has also been actively involved with the Western Canadian GFOA.


 
Dr. Mark Gilbert is a professor with the School of Public Administration, Dalhousie University in Halifax Nova Scotia. Prior to joining Dalhousie he served as CEO for the Nova Scotia Municipal Finance Corporation and held a number of other local government  management positions.. He has participated in international local government finance reform projects in a number of countries which include South Africa, Indonesia, India and Bosnia. His current areas of research include the study of local government satisfaction levels with various types of  alternative service delivery, the municipal financial implications of urban sprawl, and local government techniques for citizen engagement.  He is an academic advisor to GFOA’s committee on Canadian Issues and a past GFOA executive board member.
 


 

Ron Kaufman is the Deputy CAO / CFO / Director of Corporate Services for the Town of Caledon, population 57,000. The Town is a lower tier local government within the Region of Peel in the Greater Toronto Area. He is responsible for corporate finance, corporate procurement and the new division of corporate asset management.

Ron has been a member of GFOA since 2003 and is currently a co-chair of the professional development sub-committee. He is a current member of the Ontario MFOA Board of Directors.

Ron is a Chartered Accountant and holds an Honours Bachelor of Mathematics degree from the University of Waterloo.



Greg Kliparchuk is currently the Executive Director and Senior Financial Officer for Alberta Corporate Human Resources.  His role involves providing budgeting, accounting, reporting and financial operations support to Corporate Human Resources as well as for all Government of Alberta employee benefit programs.  He also leads the business planning and reporting functions for Corporate Human Resources.  Previously, as Director of Financial Policy and Research at the City of Edmonton, he was involved in a variety of major financial projects such as policy development, business case reviews, financial modeling and analysis, process reviews, research and major agreements.  Greg joined the City in 1999 as the operating budget coordinator, later becoming Director of the Budget Office for the City.  Before joining the City of Edmonton, Greg worked for the Province of Alberta for ten years in the areas of budgeting, business planning and royalty forecasting. 

Greg holds a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Commerce with Distinction.  He held the Secretary Treasurer and President positions of the City of Edmonton Management Association.


Esther Lee is  the Director of Financial Services at the City of Vancouver, the largest city in British Columbia. The City of Vancouver was the Host City 2010 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games and  has a population of over 642,000 with  operating and capital budget of  over $1.3 billion. Her responsibilities include financial reporting, general accounting (accounts receivables and accounts payable) and payroll, tax and utility billing and collections and bylaw collections. She is also involved with the city's  service review projects implementing business process transformations including shared servcies (procure to pay), bylaw adjudication, electronic pay statments and related  technology implementations.

Esther is a Chartered Accountant and holds Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of British Columbia. She has been a member of GFOA for almost 20 years and was on the Board of Directors of GFOA BC from 2004 to 2007, serving one term as vice president and also a member of the Tangible Capital Asset Subcommittee. Esther has been with the City of Vancouver since 2000, and prior to joining the city, Esther held senior management positions at the University of British Columbia, City of New Westminster, and the Vancouver Stock Exchange after articling with Ernst & Young (formerly Clarkson Gordon).


John Martin is currently Chief Financial Officer and City Treasurer with the City of Moncton. In this role he is responsible for financial planning, accounting and reporting, capital and operating budget preparation, accounts receivable, accounts payable, purchasing and central stores, operations administration, and utility billing and collection.
John is a Chartered Accountant and has been a member of GFOA since joining the City of Moncton in 2006. He is the Co-Chair of the GFOA Standing Committee on Canadian Issues.

Prior to joining the city, John was a Vice President of a regional wholesale, retail business and has extensive experience in public practice throughout Eastern Canada and Bermuda.

 

Lorna Rosen is the Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer for the City of Edmonton, Alberta’s Capital City.  She oversees all of the finance functions at the City as well as the assessment and taxation function and coordinates the City’s strategic planning and corporate performance measurement.  Lorna is a member of the City’s Corporate Leadership Team.  She joined the City in 2008, first as the General Manager of Asset Management and Public Works moving to the role of Chief Financial Officer in 2010.  Prior to joining the City of Edmonton, Lorna was the City Manager for the City of Fort Saskatchewan.

Lorna started out her career in public service 23 years ago in the education sector, serving as Internal Auditor for Edmonton Public Schools and Associate Superintendent of Operations for St. Albert Protestant Schools prior to moving to the municipal government sector in 2000.  Lorna is a Certified Management Accountant and is a new member to GFOA.


 

Eric Sawyer is the Chief Financial Officer for The City of Calgary, which is Canada ' s 3rd largest city with a population of more than 1 million. He oversees all of the finance functions at The City, including, planning, budgeting, reporting, treasury, taxation, regulatory affairs, accounts payables & receivables, supply chain management, and provides overall long – term financial strategy, policy and advisory support to the entire organization. Eric serves on numerous boards and committees within The City. He joined The City in 2004, and previously worked for Ontario Hydro and Hydro One in various finance roles.

Eric holds a B. Comm. and MBA in finance from the University of Toronto and has been a member of GFOA since joining The City of Calgary. He became a member of the GFOA Standing Committee on Canadian Issues in 2006, and became Co-Chair of the CCI in 2008. Eric is also a participant in the Alberta GFOA and Western Canadian GFOA.


 

Richard C Sun is the Director General of the Town of Hampstead. Hampstead is a local municipality on the Island of Montreal which is distinguished by its wholly residential nature and its heritage homes modeled after the English Manor style of the past century.  Prior to being appointed by the Provincial Government as the DG; Mr Sun was with the Ville de Montréal as the Director of Administrative Services for the Borough of Côte Saint-Luc, Hampstead, Montreal-West where he was responsible for Finances, Human Resources, Purchasing and Information Technology. He was also the City Treasurer for a number of cities of varying population sizes spanning a career of over 30 years in municipal and public services.


Richard is a member of the GFOA, he sits on the Committee on Canadian Issues and is a co-chair of the Professional Development Sub-Committee. Richard is a member of numerous other professional organizations such as the ACFM, ADGMQ, GRHMQ, APWA, ATPA etc.