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Jun 12 2018
Recycling Council of Ontario (RCO) offers annual Waste Auditor Training sessions, which are based...
Home » Search » Procurement: Advancing the Circular Economy through Buying Power

Procurement: Advancing the Circular Economy through Buying Power

RCO Knowledge Sessions

Procurement: Advancing the Circular Economy through Buying Power 
Beyond Policy and into Practice

Circular economy is becoming a widely-used term that provides an important platform beyond historical concepts of the 3Rs and waste reduction. It introduces resource efficiency that expands our collective thinking on how we produce and consume materials. Transitioning to a circular economy requires production and consumption shifts that can be furthered through policy development, market practices, and behavioural change.

RCO is pleased host and facilitate a trio of Knowledge Sessions in 2017 that aim to educate and empower members, interested stakeholders and the public to better understand, support, and accelerate the transition from a linear model of take-make-dispose to a circular economy.

The series will inform participants on the theory of circular economy and how it is creating change around the globe. It will offer businesses, policymakers, and organizations innovative examples that outline ideas and opportunities how to leverage this emerging economic model. 

All Knowledge Sessions are full-day forums (lunch included) and at the Beanfield Centre in Toronto.

RCO Member Rate: $300

Non-Member Rate: $425

Featured Speakers


Michael Pacholok

Chief Purchasing Official & Director
City of Toronto

The Purchasing & Material Management Division at the City of Toronto partners with all City divisions, designated agencies, and corporations in order to procure goods and services at the best value. Utilizing a fair and transparent procurement process, the division provides leadership, quality customer service and implements the highest standards of business ethics across the organization. The division is committed to ensuring the City of Toronto applies open, fair, equitable and accessible business processes.

Michael Pacholok assumed the role of Chief Purchasing Official for the City of Toronto in 2012, with oversight of close to $2 billion spent on goods and services per year. Previously, Michael was a lawyer for the City of Toronto, providing legal advice on procurement law, contract law and other areas of municipal law.

In the role of Chief Purchasing Official, Michael leads a professional staff of 133 and has been instrumental in the development of the Social Procurement Program and introducing other large scale transformations into the City of Toronto procurement process. Outside of his duties, Michael is a self-published author of a fantasy novel that has nothing to do with procurement or law.

Frances Edmonds

Head of Sustainability
HP Canada

HP's greatest environmental impact (60 per cent of its carbon footprint) is through customer use of products and services. Its goal is to improve customers' lives and work by providing smarter more efficient products. HP’s Design for the Environment (DfE) program dates back to 1992. Since then, the approach, tools, and processes have become more sophisticated, but they still support the same goal: to consider environmental impact in the design of every HP product and solution.

Frances Edmonds works closely with HP’s many partners to drive sustainability practices across HP’s business and throughout Canada. From being a founder of WWF’s Living Planet @ Work program to creating sustainability reporting contests, Frances seeks new and innovative ways to bring the power of HP to create meaningful change in Canada’s businesses.

LouAnn Birkett

Chair, Governance Committee
Supply Chain Management Association

A non-profit association, the Supply Chain Management Association (SCMA) is a Federation of the National Secretariat, and the Provincial and Territorial Institutes, whose mission is to build leadership in supply chain management.

LouAnn's career in supply chain management began in 1979 as a purchasing clerk and most recently she was a purchasing manager for the Municipality of Durham. LouAnn is currently active in the field as a consultant and an instructor for SCMA programs; and has served on boards and committees both at the national and provincial levels, including terms as president of the SCMA Ontario Board and Chair of the SCMA National Board. Beyond SCMA, LouAnn has also been recognized by other organizations for her leadership in supply chain, including the 2017 SCMA Fellowship Award and an Award of Merit from the Ontario Public Buyers Association.

Chris Ferris

Assistant Comptroller, Administrative Services
Toronto District Schoolboard

Purchasing and Distribution Services (PDS) is responsible for buying and supplying all materials, equipment and services for the Toronto District School Board (TDSB), and supports student learning and the effective operation of our schools and administrative buildings by providing goods and services that meet the following criteria: high-quality, fair price, timeliness and accessibility.

Chris Ferris is the Assistant Comptroller of Administrative Services and is responsible for the Purchasing and Distribution Services departments among others.

He was an active member and a former Chair of the Governments Incorporating Procurement Practises that are Environmentally Responsible (GIPPER) committee, which brought together procurement professionals from all levels of government to discuss green initiatives and share experiences that allows participants to improve environmental awareness within their organizations and incorporate environmental criteria into their procurement documents.


Laura Cocuzzi

Manager, Purchasing Planning and Performance
Region of Peel

Laura Cocuzzi has more than 14 years of experience in municipal and provincial planning and leadership, with a focus on supply chain, portfolio, and project management. Laura's experience in designing and managing a variety of procurement strategies have supported enhancements to many of Peel's communities though a number of multi-million dollar infrastructure, social, and environmental projects.
In more recent years, leading both a Project Management Office and Business Planning team have enabled her to align key organizational stakeholders in the delivery of corporate priorities. She has particular expertise in partnering with organizational areas to identify, plan and deliver supply chain value through its people, processes and outcomes while leveraging business intelligence to drive decisions that matter. 
Laura is a Certified Supply Chain Management Professional (CSCMP), Project Management Professional (PMP) and an active member in both the Supply Chain Management Association and Project Management Institute.

Judy Labelle

Advisor, Corporate Social Responsibility
Region of Peel

Judy Labelle has 28 years of municipal experience at the Region of Peel, and is currently Advisor of Corporate Social Responsibility in the Finance Department. Judy is responsible for developing, implementing, monitoring, evaluating and reporting progress for the Region’s Corporate Social Responsibility Strategy. The Strategy supports the environmental, social and economic well-being of the Peel community. Judy also leads the annual employee United Way campaign for the Region of Peel.

Judy’s past management leadership roles included multifaceted, cross-departmental and cross-system work driven by the Region’s objectives and outcomes. She possesses a diverse skill set including innovation, strategy planning and execution, change management, coaching, capacity building, collaboration, policy development, project management, performance measurement, and advocacy. Judy is a Registered Nurse with a Master of Arts (Leadership Studies) degree and Bachelor’s degree in Science & Nursing.  

Ed Rubinstein
Director, Environmental Compliance, Energy & Sustainability
University Health Network

The University Health Network (UHN) includes Toronto General and Toronto Western Hospitals, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, and the Michener Institute for Education. The scope of research and complexity of cases at UHN has made it a national and international source for discovery, education, and patient care. 
Ed Rubinstein is Director, Environmental Compliance, Energy & Sustainability, has been leading the hospital’s many environment programs since 1999 and helped UHN become a leader in greening health care. Both UHN and Ed’s leadership in the field of “greening health care” have been recognized by several awards, including from the Ontario Hospital Association, Natural Resources Canada, Practice Greenhealth and the Canadian Council of Ministers for the Environment.

Jake Westerhof
Vice-President, Corporate Strategy
Canada Fibers

Jake Westerhof oversees all municipal contracts and Material Recycling Facility (MRF) operations at Canada Fibers. His area of specialization includes MRF design and operations, and has successfully directed the development of seven facilities over the past 10 years. Mr. Westerhof also has extensive experience in the use of recovered materials, and has been a leading voice in waste reduction and recycling policy issues throughout his career. Mr. Westerhof is a former Chair of the Association of Municipal Recycling Co-ordinators (1992-1996) and was a member of Waste Diversion Ontario’s MRF Optimization Committee. Currently, Mr. Westerhof is on the Board of the Ontario Waste Management Association (OWMA) and is Chair of their Waste Diversion and Recycling Committee.


International Speakers

Mathy Stanislaus

In September 2016 the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a report for a G7 Alliance – Advancing Resource Efficiency and the Supply Chain (PDF) – that highlights abilities for private and public organizations to stimulate the development of products and services that are more resource efficient over their lifecycles. 

Joining us to elaborate on this report is Mathy Stanislaus, Senior Advisor, Accelerating Circular Economy Policy, World Economic Forum; and former Assistant Administrator in EPA's Office of Land and Emergency Management (OLEM).

Mr. Stanislaus will discuss how we can take immediate action to support greater circularity in Ontario’s production and consumption behaviours.  Mr. Stanislaus began work as Assistant Administrator for EPA's Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER) after being confirmed by the U.S. Senate on June 8, 2009, and responsibilities included leading EPA programs on hazardous and solid waste management, and hazardous waste cleanup. Mr. Stanislaus has also been an advisor to other federal government agencies, Congress, and the United Nations on a variety of environmental issues.

Dr. Mervyn Jones

Dr. Mervyn Jones is an independent sustainable procurement specialist who has provided technical support on the development and implementation of the 10YFP: Sustainable Public Procurement Programme a global framework of action to enhance international cooperation to accelerate the shift towards sustainable consumption and production (SCP) in developed and developing countries.  

He has also contributed to the EU LIFE REBus, a pioneering and testing a methodology that enables companies to transform their strategies to profitable, resilient, and more resource efficient business models (REBMs); and European Clothing Action Plan, which helps public procurers reach their environmental goals by using their buying power to stimulate a circular approach to workwear, and focuses on the clothing supply chain specifically to reduce waste and bring about effective waste recovery.

He previously worked for WRAP, where he led the Construction Waste Prevention programme, Sustainable Procurement, Manufacturing, and Products & Materials Programmes; and has a proven and independently audited track record in initiating and delivering projects that have demonstrated the business case for adopting and embedding more sustainable procurement policies and criteria into tenders and contracts.      


Panel Sessions

(each one-hour long; speakers to be announced)

Public Organizations

Governments are significant buyers of goods and services, and can use their funding influencing to drive market-based change. This panel will feature senior level representatives from the government, and highlight how the public sector has recognized the importance of recognizing and rewarding environmental performance with the same equality as price and service.

Panelists will also address how they are shifting to incorporate circular economy activities into the public bidding process, outlines barriers they have had to overcome to drive results, and what they feel are keys to success

Private Organizations

The private sector has a unique and dual opportunity through consumption and production activities to advance circular economic behaviour. This panel will provide examples of where suppliers and vendors have been challenged by their buyers to meet expanding environmental requirements.

Also to be discussed are business models being shifted by new consumption models, such as access over ownership.


Small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are rarely considered to have the necessary buying power to influence markets. Through consortium organizations, however, SMEs have discovered a mechanism to work collectively to reach scale and offer cost reductions and expanded services to their members.

This panel will focus on how SMEs can be an important part of moving the circular economic agenda.

RCO events are well attended by individuals and organizations with vested interest in the burgeoning circular economy: producers, manufacturers, processors, governments, policymakers, associations, and environmental non-government organizations. 


RCO Member Rate: $300

Non-Member Rate: $425





105 Princes' Boulevard


Categories: General Events, Member Events, RCO Events


2017-10-12 00:00:00 (All day event)

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