Senior Advisors

Our Senior Advisory Team provides RSI with an unparalleled resource of extraordinary expertise and performance, in business, government and academia. Each one stands at the top of their field, combining a record of pioneering innovation in sustainability and future-ready management, with a reputation for thoughtful engagement and decisive action.

Our Senior Advisors collaborate with RSI at the highest leadership level to deepen and enrich our strategic insight, and to expand our expertise in developing organizational, technological, social and economic solutions, for energy and climate preparedness on a medium- and long-term horizon.

Yannick Beaudoin
Yannick BeaudoinDirector General, Ontario and Northern Canada, David Suzuki Foundation
Yannick Beaudoin is Director-General for Ontario and Northern Canada with the David Suzuki Foundation. He brings a ‘new economics for transition’ lens to the organization to enable the transformation of Canada towards social and ecological sustainability. Until recently, he was Chief Scientist of GRID-Arendal, a center collaborating with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, located in Norway, which provided him with the opportunity to explore stories of sustainability in all corners of the world.

He applies a science of change and participatory social processes to a variety of themes that include: adaptation to uncertain climate futures; embedding of local, traditional and indigenous knowledge in policy-, decision- and choice-making; enabling conversations and innovation for new development and economic paradigms; promoting a transition to a sustainable relationship between society and Nature. Activities involve working with governments, local communities, industry, academia and other actors to design societal systems, processes and approaches that increase human well-being while preserving and enhancing Nature.

Most recently, Yannick has been facilitating conversations with decision makers around the world, highlighting various examples of post-GDP economics and post-extractivistic development paradigms. Yannick holds a Phd in Marine Geology from the University of Toronto and an MA in Economics for Transition from Schumacher College/University of Plymouth in the UK.

Peter Boyd
Peter BoydSenior Advisor & Climate Lead, Founder & CEO, Time4Good Group
Peter Boyd enjoys working where strategy, marketing and sustainability meet. In 2014 he moved from launch director and COO of the Carbon War Room, to independently launching The Time4Good Group. This now spans a social startup and consultancy, that includes advising The B Team on its Net-Zero initiative, and an Executive Fellowship at Yale’s Center for Business and the Environment.

He has over fifteen years of commercial experience with the Virgin Group, latterly serving as CEO of Virgin Mobile South Africa. He started his career with McKinsey & Co. after graduating BA Hons. from Oxford University reading Philosophy, Politics & Economics.

In parallel to his work at Time4Good, he is a member of the board of trustees at Earthplace and serves on the mayoral Green Task Force in his hometown of Westport, CT (which also recently targeted a ‘Net-Zero by 2050’ sustainability goal).

Blair Feltmate, PhD
Blair Feltmate, PhDAssociate Professor, Faculty of Environment, University of Waterloo
Dr. Feltmate is Associate Professor, Faculty of Environment, University of Waterloo. Positions he holds include: Chair, Climate Change Adaptation Project, Canada; Chair, Pollution Probe; Senior Advisor, Sustainable Electricity Program, Canadian Electricity Association; Board Member, Willis Energy Services; Co-Chair, WeatherWise, City of Toronto; Co-Chair, Greening Greater Toronto. He works extensively with Canada’s Property & Casualty insurance sector on matters pertaining to extreme weather and flooding.

Previous positions Dr. Feltmate has held include: Vice President, Sustainable Development, Bank of Montreal, and Director of Sustainable Development, OPG. Dr. Feltmate has developed the sustainable development programs for two dozen multi-national companies.

Sanjay Khanna
Sanjay KhannaDirector and Futurist, Whitespace Legal Collab by Baker McKenzie
Sanjay Khanna is Director and Futurist of Whitespace Legal Collab by Baker McKenzie. The first futurist appointed to a global law firm, he consults with businesses, governments and civil society on big-picture challenges, such as artificial intelligence, climate change, future of work and smart cities.

Sought out for actionable insight on social, technological, economic, environmental and political trends, Sanjay has been a strategy consultant to Insurance Bureau of Canada and Centre for Social Innovation’s Agents of Change: Climate Solutions Program. Ford Motor Co.’s chief futurist invited Sanjay's contributions to Ford Trends 2017 and Ford Trends 2018. He is a founding member of the Loblaw Food Council, launched in 2016 by Loblaws, Canada's food and pharmacy leader.

Media outlets featuring Sanjay include The Globe and Mail, CBC’s The Current, and AMA Quarterly, the journal of the American Management Association.

Ron Nielsen
Ron NielsenSenior Executive, Global Sustainability
Mr. Nielsen is a senior Business and Sustainability Executive and Advisor to boards, corporations, government and sustainability groups and initiatives.
Positions he holds include: Senior Program Advisor, Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change; Leader, International Centre for Business Innovation and Sustainability; Fellow of Tomorrow's Company (UK); Member, the Executive Committee of the CSR Centre for Excellence (in mining); Chair, the Strategic Steering Committee for Business Management and Sustainability at the Canadian Standards Association; and, Advisor to current finance and sustainability initiatives including the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (US), the International Integrated Reporting Committee (UK) and the Montreal Finance and Sustainability Initiative.

Previous Positions: Senior Director, Sustainability and Strategic Partnerships, Alcan; and, General Manager, Cliffs Natural Resources.

Kenneth Poon
Kenneth PoonEnergy Research Manager, Blackstone Energy Services
Kenneth Poon is the Energy Research Manager for Blackstone Energy Services Inc. In his current role, Ken handles energy analytics, market intelligence, and carbon management. Before Blackstone, Ken was the Associate Director for the Institute for the Advanced Study of Food and Agricultural Policy, which serves to consult on a number of economic and policy questions for various public and private stakeholders in the agri-food sector. Ken worked as a Research Associate at the Department of Food, Agricultural, and Resource Economics in University of Guelph, where his research focused on economic and environmental impact of agri-food policies. He has worked with and provided consulting services for a number of NGOs and think tanks involving business sustainability and the agricultural markets. Ken received his Master of Science in Agricultural Economics at University of Guelph.
Jeanette M. Southwood
Jeanette M. SouthwoodVice-President - Strategy & Partnerships, Engineers Canada
An award-winning engineer, Jeanette Southwood is Vice-President - Strategy & Partnerships at Engineers Canada, the national organization of the 12 engineering regulators that license Canada's 280,000 members of the engineering profession. She leads a team focusing on the future of the engineering profession, in particular strategies to sustain and grow the profession for the continued benefit of society.

Prior to joining Engineers Canada, she led the Canadian Urban Development & Infrastructure Sector and the Global Sustainable Cities teams at a large global consulting firm where her teams focused on the strategic integration of cutting-edge international innovation and knowledge into value-creating solutions for public and private clients. For more than 20 years, she has directed and participated in numerous projects related to urban intensification and the sustainable revitalization of communities.

A dedicated volunteer on several Boards over the years, Jeanette is a Fellow of Engineers Canada and a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering, a recipient of the Province of Ontario “Leading Women Building Communities Award”, and a Canada’s Clean50 2014 honouree. In 2015, she received the Ontario Professional Engineers Awards (OPEA) Engineering Excellence Medal and was named one of the WXN Top 100.

Melanie Steiner
Melanie SteinerChief Risk Officer, PVH
Melanie Steiner is Chief Risk Officer for PVH. Based at the company’s New York City headquarters, Melanie is responsible for managing risk efficiently and effectively within PVH. This position includes overall responsibility for internal audit, enterprise risk management, corporate social responsibility, and human rights

Prior to joining PVH, Melanie worked at Ernst & Young as Market Leader, Climate Change and Sustainability Services. There she provided her clients with assistance across a range of services including risk assessments, internal audits, strategy development, and non-financial reporting advisory and assurance. Before that, she spent 15 years in law and policy, first practicing commercial and environmental law, and then working as a Senior Policy Advisor at the international level.

Melanie lives in Toronto and attended Osgoode Hall Law School of York University, where she received a Bachelor of Laws. She also holds a Master of Laws from the University of London. Melanie sits on various boards and committees and is a regular speaker on corporate social responsibility and risk management.

James W.S. Young, Ph.D., P.Eng., P.Met.
James W.S. Young, Ph.D., P.Eng., P.Met.President, Jim Young Atmospheric Services Inc.
Jim has over 41 years of experience in applied atmospheric research. He has served on international scientific panels and is the author of over 100 scientific and applied papers and articles. Jim is President of Jim Young Atmospheric Services Inc. in Toronto, Ontario, which he created in March 2005 after 33 years in the private sector (as VP and Senior Air Quality Expert with SENES Consultants Limited), the federal government (Acting Director General Research, Atmospheric Environment Service) and as Chief, Air Quality Section, Environment New Brunswick. Jim joined RWDI in 2015 as a Senior Consultant to grow their weather related services. Jim was Canadian Co-Chairman of the International Air Quality Advisory Board of the International Joint Commission for 12 years providing advice and guidance to the Commission on transboundary air quality issues. Jim is a Past Director of the Air and Waste Management Association (Ontario Section), Past President of the Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society (CMOS) and is a Professional Engineer in the Province of Ontario.