Bernie M. Farber
Bernie M. Farber was appointed Executive Director the Mosaic Institute in 2015. Bernie is a native of Ottawa and a graduate of Carleton University. His long-spanning career in the not-for-profit sector includes the role of CEO of the Canadian Jewish Congress (2005-2011) where he spearheaded multiple human and civil rights initiatives, inter-faith and inter-ethnic dialogues among Canada’s wide-ranging diverse communities including Rwandan genocide survivors, Darfurian survivors of the Janjaweed as well as working closely with the Canadian Roma community. Most recently, Bernie has served as Senior Vice President of Gemini Power Corporation and CEO of the Paloma Foundation. In these capacities he worked in partnership with First Nations peoples towards economic development and community self-reliance in a way that respected both the environment and First Nations’ traditional values. With the Paloma Foundation he worked providing grants and educational opportunities for homeless shelter staff in the GTA. Bernie is a recipient of the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada Medal, the Zaionz Award for Jewish Communal Service, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, and the St John Provincial Commendation.
Director of Development
Wendy joined the Institute in 2014, bringing with her a wealth of experience in helping both international and local charitable organizations establish effective development practices. Wendy holds a BA in Communications from the University of Toronto, and a Master’s Degree in Economics and Public Policy from the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing. Wendy has dedicated her personal and professional life to eradicating violence, and advancing the principles of diversity, equity and inclusion.
Rachel first joined the Mosaic Institute in 2012 as the inaugural MGA intern. Upon completing her studies and obtaining her Master of Global Affairs, Rachel joined the Next Generation: South Asian Canadian Global Citizenship Project (2012-2014) as its Project Coordinator. She subsequently became our Senior Project Officer & Executive Assistant, until she moved to the UK in 2014 where she continued to work in the non-profit sector. In 2016, Rachel (re)joined Mosaic as its Operations Manager. When she is not at Mosaic, Rachel is an aspiring polyglot and enjoys experimenting with calligraphy.
Program Manager, UofMosaic
Virginia comes to the Mosaic Institute with a strong passion for co-creating programs with young people who have a desire to make a positive difference in their communities. She has spent the last six years in the youth development field, supporting youth in underserved communities both in Toronto and Nairobi, Kenya, in establishing sustainable microenterprises, education and career planning. Prior to joining Mosaic, Virginia led a range of research, communications/social media and administrative projects at Tropicana Employment Centre (TEC). Previous to TEC, she was a Youth Entrepreneurship Officer at Street Kids International (Kenya liaison) where she was responsible for monitoring and evaluating field projects, partnership development, event planning and facilitating workshops. Prior to transitioning into the non-profit sector, Virginia worked in the banking industry for six years. Virginia currently serves on the boards of For Youth Initiative and the Canadian Institute of Cultural Affairs, and is a member of the Canadian Evaluation Society. Virginia holds an MA in Adult Education and Community Development and a BA in Political Science. In addition to her professional work, Virginia is an avid dance fitness enthusiast.
Program Manager, Next Generation 2.0
Gina has been a part of the Mosaic Institute team since 2011 as the Program Manager of the Next Generation program for high school students. Gina has been an educator for 15 years, and as a member of the Hungarian Romani diaspora, Gina has been at the forefront of the Roma Civil Rights Movement in Canada since 2008. Gina’s awards for her commitment to human rights and social justice include the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, and the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers’ 2012 Advocacy Award, among others. Gina brings her passion for education and human rights to the Mosaic Institute in her capacity as program manager of the Next Generation Program. Gina is currently based in Vancouver, B.C.
Project Coordinator (British Columbia), Next Generation 2.0
Usman joined the Mosaic team in 2015. He is the Project Coordinator for Mosaic’s Next Generation Program in British Columbia. Usman has years of experience working with migrant and diasporic youth in Ontario, British Columbia, and the United States. He comes from a background in engineering – he holds a bachelor’s degree in Computeer Engineering and a master’s degree in Civil Enginerring- and has worked extensively as a web designer and and software engineer; as well as from a background of community organizing and advocacy. Usman brings with him a wealth of experience on the South Asian experience in Canada and a passion for working with youth in order to help them become active agents of change.
Project Coordinator (Ontario), Next Generation 2.0
Shirin joined the Mosaic Institute in 2016 as the Ontario Project Coordinator for the Next Generation: Canadian Global Citizenship Project. She is a community organizer, researcher, and arts administrator in Toronto. Her interests lie at the intersections of cultural production, memorialization, youth engagement, and progressive-feminism. She has worked with a variety of non-for-profit organizations in the city, and most recently coordinated the first two years of the first ever program addressing issues of gender identity and sexual orientation within Toronto’s Farsi speaking diaspora. Shirin brings with her a steadfast commitment for working with youth, and standing in solidarity with marginalized groups, to ensure a more just world, free of oppression, prejudice, and exploitation.
“People of Colour & Reconciliation in Canada” Project Coordinator
Yasmeen is a recent graduate of the University of Toronto where she achieved an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree, specializing on the roles of diasporic communities in transnational settings. As a member of the Iranian diaspora living in Canada, she hopes to bring her experiences as an immigrant to the forefront of her work. Yasmeen is primarily interested in human rights issues, particularly those affecting Indigenous communities, and international migrants and refugees. Her work with the Toronto Youth Cabinet involves working alongside marginalized youth in the City in developing a municipal strategy to combat rising levels of unemployment. She is also a strong advocate for affordable and accessible post-secondary education. Outside of work, Yasmeen is a beach volleyball enthusiast, a self-proclaimed ‘foodie’, and loves learning new languages.
Intra-Jewish Dialogue Project Coordinator
Allie joined the Mosaic Institute in 2017. She is passionate about working together with young people and diverse communities to foster cross-cultural understanding, inclusion, and peace. Allie completed her Master’s degree in Human Rights from The London School of Economics and Political Science in London, England. She also received her Honours Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Communications from McGill University. Allie is a published author on subjects dealing with the societal treatment of ethnic and religious minorities, immigrants, and women in Canada. Outside of her work and studies, Allie loves hiking and canoeing, and always seems to be working on a few art projects at a time.
PCJ Winter 2017 Intern
Timothy is currently in his final year of study at the University of Toronto, studying International Relations and Peace, Conflict and Justice Studies. Timothy has served previously with academic journals and events, specifically the Peace Conflict and Justice Studies Undergraduate Conference and Synergy: The Journal for Contemporary Asian Affairs, in addition to work experience in an investment firm in Hong Kong and with the Federal Government in Canada. In the coming years, Timothy will pursue a Juris Doctor (JD) at the University of Ottawa, hoping to specialize in International Law. Having interests in East Asian Affairs, International Relations, International Development and Transnational Justice, Timothy hopes to utilize his experience and knowledge in these matters in his position at the Mosaic Institute.
Luula Hassan, University of Toronto Scarborough Campus, double majoring in Public Policy and Health Policy.
Elena Lifshits Carrera, Master of Global Affiars Program at the Munk School of Global Affairs
Akshay Sharma, Master of Global Affiars Program at the Munk School of Global Affairs
Maddie Wolfond, Masters of Social Work, Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work in New York City
2016 Dinner Committee (click here for more information)
Elizabeth Levitt, Chair
Isabelle Fish, Founder, Rue Pigalle
Susie Kololian, Mosiac Institute Advisory Council & co-founder, Variant Path
Paul Noble, Vice-President & Deputy General Counsel, BMO Capital Markets
Yusra Siddiquee, Partner, Norton Rose Fulbright
HumanityWins Committee (click here for more information)
Chair: The Hon Ron Atkey, former Minister of Employment and Immigration
Hind Aboud Kabawat, School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, Geroge Mason University
Izzeldin Abuyelaish, OO, Associate Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Founder, Daughters for Life Foundation
The Hon Louise Arbour, CC. G.O.Q, former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Sarkis Assadourian, three-term Federal Member of Parliament (retired), Canadian of Syrian/Armenian origin
The Hon. Dr. Ed Broadbent, PC CC, Leader, NDP (retired); Founder, Broadbent Institute
Dr. Pamela Divinsky, Principal of the Divinsky Group
Atom Egoyan, OC, Academy Award Nominated Writer and Director
Bernie M. Farber, Executive Director of the Mosaic Institute
Vahan Kololian, Chair and co-Founder of the Mosaic Institute
Norman Inkster, OC, 18th Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Past President of Interpol
Donald H. Morrison, Founder and Chair, the Thomas Merton Centre
HumanityHouses Sub-Committee (click here for more information)
Chair: The Hon Ron Atkey, former Minister of Employment and Immigration
Mitchell Cohen, Daniels Corporation
Hanita Braun, Verdiroc
Robert Eisenberg, York Heritage
Randal Frobelious, ECI Real Estate
Benjamin Shinewald, BOMA