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@MarketPlace Speakers

We pride ourselves on offering some of the best and most diverse speakers for the @MarketPlace Conference. If you're an expert looking at future trends, then we'd like to hear from you!

Confirmed Speakers


Piero Fusco  

Piero Fusco is Director of Sales – Ontario.

Piero has over 16 years experience in sales & marketing and currently holds the position of director of sales for TELUS in Ontario.

Piero has a passion for empowering his customers with the right tools to connect them with their customers, while also giving back to local communities.

Ashraf Kamel  

Ashraf Kamel is an Account Executive on the Marketing Solutions team at LinkedIn Canada. The Canadian Marketing Solutions team works with marketers and advertising agencies to connect them with LinkedIn's audience of thought leaders and decision makers within Canada and across the world.

Ashraf is an interactive and social media expert who advises Canada's top corporations on how to market their brand on emerging platforms and LinkedIn.  Prior to joining LinkedIn, Ashraf helped launch and grow four high tech start-ups in the GTA and Waterloo areas.

Ashraf currently lives with his wife and three children in Toronto's Little Portugal.  He is an avid cyclist, endurance athlete and social media advocate.

Andrew Coppolino  

Andrew Coppolino is a freelance writer, broadcaster, and food commentator. A former restaurant reviewer with the Waterloo Region Record and Echo Weekly, he is cuisine correspondent for Rogers TV "Grand River Living," food columnist with Kitchener Post, and editor and publisher of Rare Republic, a new online community focusing on food in Waterloo Region.

With Mark Morton of the University of Waterloo, he published the cook book and Elizabethan culinary history Cooking with Shakespeare (Greenwood Press, 2008).

Dan Silvestru  

Dan Silivestru (on Twitter as @confusement) has been a technologist ever since he can remember. He started at a young age, by taking apart his toys and his grandfathers pocket watch just so that he could see how they worked. This passion for learning was funnelled into a career as a software developer and entrepreneur.

Over the years Dan has applied his skills and passion to various projects, always learning and never being afraid to challenge the status quo. Dan was one of the co-founders and CTO of tinyHippos Inc. which was acquired by RIM in 2011.

Dan is the host of Startup Drinks Waterloo Region as well as the highly successful MoBeers event for mobile application developers.

In his spare time (which is almost non existant) Dan is a whiskey connoisseur, a fine chef, eats a paleo diet, a proud father and engaged to everyone's sweet NomNomTreats baker, PJ Lowe.

Mike Morrice   Mike Morrice is the co-founder and Executive Director of Sustainable Waterloo Region, a not-for-profit that advances the environmental sustainability of organizations across Waterloo Region through collaboration.

Currently, Sustainable Waterloo Region is working with dozens of local organizations – including Wilfrid Laurier University, Sun Life, and the Region of Waterloo – to help them set and make progress against voluntary carbon reduction commitments. More information is available online at

In 2009, Mike was selected by The Waterloo Region Record as one of Waterloo Region's inaugural Top 40 under 40. In February 2012, Mike was awarded Young Entrepreneur of the Year by the Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce.
Tim Westhead  

Tim Westhead, OCT, BA, MA, BEd., is an award-winning Canadian educator, actor, author, and internationally known speaker.

For more than 25 years he has delivered his popular keynotes and seminars for business organizations, financial institutions, universities, and educational associations.

A nominee for Canada's prestigious Prime Minister's Awards for Teaching Excellence, Tim has been honoured by the Ontario Public School Boards' Association and the University of Waterloo Faculty of Arts Alumni Association for "outstanding contributions to his professional field." He was also acknowledged on national television at Canada's 2003 Walk of Fame by his former student and world-renowned actor, Mike ("Austin Powers") Myers.

Asim Siddiqui  

Asim Siddiqui has been working in the corporate world for the past 7 years in the realm of Information Technology, after graduating from the University of Toronto in 2004 with a degree in Computer Science. Having reached a saturation point, Asim decided to create something of his own.

Being an active community member, Asim enjoys participating in local community events and is interested in connecting local communities through the virtual world.

His passion for connecting local communities and support for local small businesses led him to create a portal called

Nikos Rentas  

Nikos Rentas, PMP, OCT, BSc, B.Ed., is an Entrepreneur, Project Manager, Corporate Trainer, Teacher, Keynote Speaker, Mentor, and Coach.

He assists businesses on a daily basis teaching the art of growth and market penetration through communication and technology.

With technology making immense leaps in the online world, Nikos' focus has been focusing on mobile application development. Together with SiliconW, they have launched the new LiveApp Designer Platform, that enables graphic designers to build and deploy managed mobile apps.

Nelson Dunk  

Nelson Dunk loves movies. He is a filmmaker and owner of Skylight Productions, helping companies across North America convey their message in a creative and cinematic way.

Nelson started creating videos in the Non-profit sector and quickly discovered that HOW you communicate is just as important as WHAT you communicate. Nelson is always looking for opportunities to create impacting and creative films, whether in the creative or corporate arenas.

Capturing and conveying stories is what he finds most exciting.

Brendan Waller  

Brendan Waller has been engaged in the creative industries for over 10 years now. From his early days in film and design, through to years of experience in the Marketing and Advertising world, he can hardly remember a day he wasn't involved in doing something creative.

He acts as a designer, Project Manager and Marketing Manager for clientele ranging from Kitchener-Waterloo to Toronto and Ottawa. He also is fuelled by a deep entrepreneurial spirit. In 2010, Brendan founded the DSGN network, a creative, collaborative environment where freelancers work together to provide a complete end-to-end creative solution. 

This entrepreneurial desire and curiosity has Brendan continually evaluating emerging technologies to inspire future innovations, and further opportunities to partner with the many inspirational people he's met within Waterloo Region.

Cian O'Sullivan  

Cian O'Sullivan is the Principal Negotiator at Desire2Learn Incorporated. He studied his undergraduate at McMaster University in Kinesiology and has a Law Degree from the National University of Ireland.

Through the last 15 years Cian has managed extensive projects, and programs at an executive and strategic level, including construction projects, data centre's, and national wireless projects. From a contracting perspective Cian has over 10 years of global contracting and negotiating experience at all levels of government and with fortune 500 companies.

In addition Cian sits on the Board of Directors for THEMUSEUM, consults for a Family Health Team in London Ontario, is and a Canada leading fundraiser for Cystic Fibrosis. Cian enjoys local sports, golf and spending time with his family.


Discussion Panel - Women in Business


Attendees at the @MarketPlace Conference are in for a real treat as we present a panel discussion with some of the region's smartest women in business!

Click on a photo below to find out more about each panelist.


Dorothy Fry Sharon Bennett Stephanie Rozek Steph Tanner
Dorothy Fry Sharon Bennett Stephanie Rozek Steph Tanner




Thank you to our sponsors

SBCN LinkedIn Prime Information Security Motivational Steps THEMUSEUM
Skylight Productions Flourish Florals Never Forget Photo Digitcom
SATNER Mobile Smith Graphics Photography
Waterloo Region Record - Community Partnerships Program Libro Kitchener BIA