About | Advisory Board
Our Advisory Board is a collection of individuals who bring unique knowledge and skills which complement the knowledge and skills of the team members in order to more effectively govern the organization.
Lana is one of Canada’s most respected Aboriginal relations strategists, well-known in the mineral exploration, development and mining sector for her depth of knowledge regarding aboriginal engagement, economic development strategies and for helping companies to earn a social license to operate. Her work focuses on facilitating partnerships so aboriginal communities and industry can work together.
Lana worked as an independent consultant for more than 10 years, advising mining and energy companies around consultation and engagement strategies, skills and employment training and economic development. Her extensive background started in banking with growth in wealth management and community economic strength.
Lana was the first Aboriginal woman to Chair a junior mineral exploration company. Lana currently serves as Chair for the Aboriginal Relations Committee for the Association of Mineral Exploration British Columbia and is the President Industry Council for Aboriginal Business (ICAB). Lana frequently presents at conferences and recently was Diversity 101 Session Chair - CIM 2014 and Chair at the Aboriginal Opportunities Forum 2014 at the Vancouver Board of Trade. She is a member of the Whitecap Dakota First Nation.
Yvonne Fizer launched her professional life in the Public Sector. As Educator and Partnership Coordinator in the Consumer and Corporate Affairs Department, she was a member of the taskforce which enacted Plain Language legislation; coordinated and delivered media messages to create awareness on a variety of consumer and corporate issues; and liaised with industry stakeholders. Her consumer experience prepared her to advocate for home-based businesses and women in business in the Economic Development Department. Yvonne advised entrepreneurs on setting up successful enterprises and helped City Governments reconcile their local regulations to allow businesses to incubate from home.
In 1996 Yvonne left the public sector to invest 14 years developing the market for Enterprise Facilitation, developed by Dr. Ernesto Sirolli. As Executive Director responsible for business development at the Sirolli Institute International, Yvonne negotiated and partnered with all levels of Government, Crown Corporations, Financial Institutions, Non-profits, Colleges and Universities and private sector firms that wanted to take on support for enterprise in fulfillment of their economic development agendas. She coached leaders to articulate the rationale for local Enterprise Facilitation and advised on fundraising strategies.
Yvonne left the Institute and has joined SEF Canada bringing with her enormous experience. Yvonne has a personal passion for strength-based team building strategies, helping organizations to realize their potential.
Michael (Mick) Lazar
Mick Lazar retired from Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce in 2000. His banking career spanned 42 years with extensive experience in commercial and retail banking He held a wide variety of positions with CIBC culminating in his appointment as Regional General Manager for the Alberta Region. Primary areas of responsibility and focus included Credit Assessment, Small Business Support, Corporate and Government Account Management, Regional Risk Management, Team Building, Strategic Planning and Corporate Leadership.
In 1997 Mick volunteered his abilities to help establish Sirolli Institute Canada Ltd. This was a Non Profit Company formed to provide communities with education and training in economic development through support of their local entrepreneurs. Its objectives were aligned with principles espoused by Ernesto Sirolli, founder of Sirolli Institute International Enterprise Facilitation Inc. In 2000 he was appointed a director and Chief Financial Officer for both companies. He continued in these positions until 2009.
Education includes completion of courses in Economics, Accounting, Financial Management and Human Resource Management at the University of Manitoba. He attended courses at the Banff School of Advanced Management on Invitation along with numerous other courses and training in Leadership, Team Building and Strategic Planning. His skills include a high level of computer literacy and interpretive information management. On a somewhat different note, Mick exercises his artistic passion by designing and building concert classical guitars for serious students and professional musicians. He has served in excess of 100 clients in various locations throughout the world over the past 31 years.
Mick resides near Edmonton, Alberta with his wife Gaylene and son Tyler.
David McFaul retired in 2010 as Senior Vice President-President International at Boston Scientific Corporation and a member of the Company's Executive Committee. During his 15 year tenure at Boston Scientific, he was an Operating Committee member, Regional President of Asia Pacific & Japan, President Japan, Vice President Sales Development Intercontinental, Vice President of Latin America, Canada and sub-Saharan Africa and responsible for the start-up and development of the Canadian business. He was the Company Chair for Worldwide Diabetes Day from 2007 to 2009. With over 25 years experience in the medical industry, Mr. McFaul has also held sales, marketing and general management positions at a variety of other companies including Stryker Corporation, EBI Medical Systems, Baxter Corporation, and Abbott Labs. He is a past Board member of Covalon, a publicly traded Canadian medical device company. He most recently sat as CEO for a Contract Research Organization start-up enterprise. He is a new Board Member for Orpyx Medical Technologies. Orpyx develops sensor-based technologies that address the growing demand for self-monitoring devices in medical & athletic applications.
Douglas Myrdal provides executive expertise and creative thinking in taxation, corporate structure, strategic and business planning, seed capital, investment approaches, wealth creation, accounting and bookkeeping. He began his career with Price Waterhouse in 1986 and obtained his Chartered Accountant designation in 1989. After eight years and continuous promotion up to the management level, he ventured out into his own business of providing consulting, business and financial services. Past clients include Gizella Pastry (general manager from 1994 to 1997 of one of the largest privately-held bakeries in B.C.), Golden West Bakery (corporate controller from 1994 to 1997 of the exclusive manufacturer of buns and bagels for McDonald’s Restaurants in B.C., Alberta, and the U.S. Northwest states), Simons & Associates (manager from 1998 to 2001 of a full service accounting firm), Douglas R. Myrdal, Inc. C.A. (owner from 2001 to 2005 of a full service C.A. firm), Total Care Home & Office Services (president from 1999 to 2000 of a construction and cleaning services company), Greenbelt Renewable Energy Inc. (president and CFO from 2003 to 2005 of an independent electrical power producer), Clear Vantage Inc. (president from 2003 to 2007 of an acquisition and market expansion company), Alpha Technologies/Boundary Bay Airport (corporate controller in 2008 of a commercial battery and power supply manufacturer and a local airport), and Broco Glass Group (CFO from 2009 to present of the second largest auto glass company in B.C.).
Douglas is a graduate of the University of British Columbia in 1986 and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of B.C. in 1989. He has continued his professional development through ongoing, extensive education and courses. He is currently studying real estate investing and is in the process of obtaining his real estate license in B.C.
Douglas joins SEF Canada as CFO, with his extensive background in both accounting and management, he can make great contributions to our movement forward.
George Ritchie is currently President of Strand Securities Corporation in Vancouver. Since 1986 he also holds the title of Director of Marketing and Chief Compliance Officer. Strand Securities Corporation is involved in development, acquisitions and financing of over 1 Billion dollars worth of projects across North America over the last 20 years. George graduated from Carleton University with a 4 year Honors Bachelor Degree. After Graduation, he spent 7 years at IBM as a Marketing Representative. During his final year with IBM he made the top 2% of sales people and was awarded the Golden Circle in 1980 in Singapore. Before Strand Securities, George’s experience in the markets came from Imperial Securities as Branch Manager.
George Ritchie has expertise in public markets. His experience in a wide variety of public companies provides him the understanding of large corporation shareholder values with the need for corporate social responsibility. He brings to SEF Canada an appreciation of the social license to operate challenges in both resource sectors and land use.
Michael Saint is founder, CEO and chairman of The Saint Consulting Group, the world’s largest and most experienced firm in the new management consulting discipline of land use politics. He is co-author of the book, NIMBY Wars – The Politics of Land Use, published in 2009.
After a career in journalism, politics and public relations, Mike founded The Saint Consulting Group in 1983 in Massachusetts. Today, it serves clients from four offices in the United States and international affiliates in Toronto, Vancouver, London and Berlin.
The Saint Consulting Group has worked on more than 1,700 controversial projects in 47 U.S. states, in Canada and in England. Assignments have included office parks, hotels, hospitals, retail centers, power plants, quarries, landfills, casinos, ports, mixed-use developments, malls, heliports, golf courses and an oil refinery. Mike Saint and his colleagues have developed specialized political techniques that help clients generate public support to ensure that they prevail in the local governmental approval process.
A graduate of Holy Cross College with a degree in political science, Mike earned his master’s in business administration from the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt University. He has done additional study at the University of Chicago Business School and at the Harvard Business School.
Mike is president of the Nashville Opera Association and has served on the board of directors of the Association of Management Consulting Firms in New York and as a trustee on the board of the Foundation for Excellence in Consulting and Management Inc. He serves on the governance committee of the Nashville District Council of the Urban Land Institute.
Mike is a former board member of the George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
He is a member of the Urban Land Institute, the National Sand, Stone & Gravel Association and the International Council of Shopping Centers.
Mike has been a guest lecturer at the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt University and the Jack C. Massey Graduate School of Business at Belmont University. He is the author or co-author of articles published in Land Development magazine, Urban Land magazine, Shopping Center Business, the Stone, Sand and Gravel Review, REBusiness Online and Design Intelligence magazine.
He has addressed the International Council of Shopping Centers Conference on Open-Air Centers and it’s ReCON Global Retail Real Estate Convention in Las Vegas, the Commercial Retail Council of the Urban Land Institute, the Missouri Limestone Producers Association, the Government Affairs Committee of the National Sand, Stone & Gravel Association, the Ontario Sand, Stone & Gravel Association and the Pennsylvania Gaming Congress and Racing Forum, and other international, national and regional business organizations.
Mike, his wife and two daughters live in Franklin, TN.
Jim Simpson is an experienced mining engineer with focus on copper gold projects. He brings hands on mining, operating and with senior management roles worldwide and corporate M&A. Jim is currently a Corporate Consultant providing merger and acquisition services to a variety of companies, and has been involved in the resources industry for 24 years. Mr. Simpson was the Chief Operating Officer for Pybar Mining Services, a leading mid - sized mining contractor. From 2007 through 2008 Mr. Simpson was the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of Peak Gold Ltd. and a Director of Peak Gold Asia Pacific. In that role, Mr. Simpson was responsible for operations in Cobar, NSW; and MPBA in Amapa, Brazil. He was also part of the acquisitions and mergers team. From 2003 through 2007, Mr. Simpson was General Manager and Director of Goldcorp Asia Pacific and was the General Manager of the Peak Gold Mines including the New Cobar Open Cut and was also charged with the responsibility of mergers and acquisitions in Australia. Mr Simpson holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Mining) from the University of NSW. He is also a Member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy.
Jay Vincent is an management consultant who specializes in organizational effectiveness, stakeholder engagement and technology development.
He principally advises organizations and businesses on effectively engaging the public and their stakeholders in a world transforming from enhanced connectivity. His core expertise is developing online and offline stakeholder engagement programs for businesses and organizations that must convert key organizational and external stakeholders into meaningful and persuasive advocates. More than anything, he is an Outreach Expert.
Additionally, Jay is adept at the development of sales plans and enhancing sales organizations. He specializes in helping small to medium size consulting enterprises achieve their goals when it comes to marketing and selling their products and services.
Today, he leads at the intersection of business; government and technology, helping clients develop business solutions to navigating the challenges posed by a more active public and stakeholders.
He is a lifetime member and alumni of the American Council of Young Political Leaders having served as delegate to Taiwan and as lead facilitator and representative of a USAID funded program in Moldova for a 14 – Nation Eastern European Young Political Leaders Conference. He was also honored to serve as the delegate escort for the U.S. to China 2010 trip.
He also serves on the New Leaders Council Leadership Board of Advisors as an ambassador. He also sits of the prestigious Board of Governors for the 100 Club of Chicago which helps the families of first responders killed in the line of duty with immediate financial support and ongoing educational assistance.
Jay is a graduate of Marquette University and the Les Aspin Center for Government Studies. He holds a Masters in Business Administration degree from the University of Notre Dame's Mendoza College of Business, which recently awarded Jay, the Recent Alumnus Service Award for his work in creating Notre Dame's Conversations on Leadership and Ethics program.
Jay is married to Kelly and lives in Chicago with their children Jack and Vivienne along with his dog Maggie.