Each year at the Top Employer Summit, we present a spectacular line-up of world-class speakers, thought-leaders and the best case studies from our annual competition — each hand-picked by our editors to bring you the latest thinking on becoming an employer of choice. Case studies are drawn from current winners of the Canada’s Top 100 Employers project, as well as the 18 other regional and special-interest competitions that our editorial team manages.
We will be posting our full list of speakers for this year’s event in the coming months, but in the meantime you can read about our keynote speakers from previous years here.
With a career spanning five decades, George Takei is known around the world for his founding role in the acclaimed television series Star Trek, in which he played Hikaru Sulu, helmsman of the Starship Enterprise. But George Takei’s story goes where few stories have gone before. From a childhood spent with his family wrongfully imprisoned in a Japanese Internment Camp during WWII, to becoming one of the country’s leading figures in the fight for social justice, LGBTQ rights, and marriage equality—George Takei remains a powerful voice on issues ranging from politics to pop culture.
Takei, who is openly gay, has long been a passionate advocate for social justice. He has served as the spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign “Coming Out Project,” and was Cultural Affairs Chairman of the Japanese American Citizens League. He is also chairman emeritus and a trustee of the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles. He was appointed to the Japan-US Friendship Commission by former President Clinton and the government of Japan awarded Takei the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, for his contribution to US-Japanese relations. The decoration was conferred by His Majesty, Emperor Akihito, at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. In 2007, Asteroid 7307 Takei—located between Mars and Jupiter—was named in the performer’s honor in appreciation for his social work.
In 2012, Mashable.com named Takei the #1 most-influential person on Facebook, currently with nearly 10 million likes and more than 1.81 million followers on Twitter.
Kristina Leung is the Editor of the Canada’s Top 100 Employers project at Mediacorp Canada Inc. In addition to working on selections for the Canada’s Top 100 Employers competition, Kristina also is active on the editorial work for the 19 regional and special-interest “top employer” competitions that are affiliated with the national project. Kristina received her Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Toronto and, prior to her current role, was an Editor on the Eluta.ca project at Mediacorp. Originally from Oakville, Ontario, Kristina currently resides in Toronto.
Tony Meehan is the Publisher of the Canada’s Top 100 Employers project, now in its 15th annual edition. The Top 100 project, which started as a best-selling paperback, now reaches millions of Canadians every year through numerous newspaper and magazine partners as well as online through the popular Eluta.ca job search engine. Mr. Meehan also serves as President of Mediacorp Canada Inc., the nation’s largest publisher of employment periodicals, and is Founder of the Eluta.ca job search engine. Since its inception, Mediacorp’s employment guides have sold more than one million copies in 17 countries and, last year, the Eluta.ca search engine was used by over 5 million Canadians. Originally trained as a lawyer, Mr. Meehan holds degrees from Harvard University, the University of Toronto and the University of Western Ontario. He also holds a Certificat from the Université de Paris IV (Sorbonne). Raised in Nova Scotia, Mr. Meehan currently resides in Toronto.
JoAnn Sheahan is a Senior Human Resources Manager at Procter & Gamble. JoAnn joined Procter & Gamble in 1987 after graduating from Queen’s University with a Bachelor of Science. JoAnn has extensive human resources experience in both a manufacturing and general office environment, and is currently leading HR for P&G’s Marketing and Product Supply functions. JoAnn has led Procter & Gamble’s Health and Wellness strategy since 2010, most recently creating Procter & Gamble’s Mental Health strategy and policy.
Richard Yerema is the Managing Editor of Canada’s Top 100 Employers and is this country’s most widely-read career author. Mr. Yerema oversees the editorial team that manages the Canada’s Top 100 Employers project, which has been called one “of the most prestigious lists” in Canadian business, as well as a series of 20 regional and special-interest competitions. Mr. Yerema is also the author of The Career Directory, now in its 21st edition, which lets young people find great employers that are looking for people with their academic qualifications. His editorial independence and quality of work is one of the most enduring and respected in the Canadian career field. Raised in Southern Ontario, Mr. Yerema is a graduate of the University of Toronto and currently resides north of Toronto.