Alia is a social entrepreneur and lecturer at Simon Fraser University, where she teaches Sustainable Innovation and Introduction to Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Passionate about the fields of sustainability, poverty alleviation and impact investing, Alia is the Founder of Luv The Grub, an emerging social enterprise that operates at a number of levels in the food system by capturing produce seconds that would otherwise go to waste, hires newcomer refugees and immigrants through a paid employment training program and produces delicious chutneys and spreads for the local market. In addition, Alia is also the Co-Founder of Liv & Lola, a fair trade home decor business that works with artisans in rural areas of Nicaragua, Guatemala, and Thailand where employment opportunities are scarce in an effort to lift them, their families and their communities out of poverty.
Facilitator, Equity-Centred Accelerator
Bahar is a facilitator and business coach passionate about working with entrepreneurs with a mission to serve their community. She brings over 15 years of experience as an entrepreneur, program manager, and consultant. She has owned and operated a clothing store in Vancouver and worked in economic and community development with government bodies, not-for-profits, and educational institutions across BC. She immigrated to Canada with her family at the age of sixteen, living and working on the unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples since then. As a settler and a first-generation immigrant, she is deeply interested in initiatives that centre on building inclusive communities and focusing on the common good.
Associate Director, Operations
Bonnie has been with RADIUS since 2018, generally managing RADIUS’ needs in the fields of HR, finance, operations, and organizational project management. Previously, Bonnie spent 10 years in post-secondary education at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity’s Leadership Programming area. Bonnie’s introduction to high-paced logistics, communications, and operations came from her days as a licensed aeronautical radio operator with the Government of Alberta, spending several wildfire seasons at the Provincial Forest Fire Centre as an Aircraft Operations Dispatcher, and in the northern boreal forests as a Wildfire Radio Operator when crisis called.
Bonnie is new to these unceded Coast Salish lands, and is grateful to call them home. She has a music degree from Western University and sings with Elektra Women’s Choir. Bonnie completed her Executive MBA with the Beedie School of Business at Simon Fraser University in 2022.
Coordinator, Communications & Digital Media
Caitlin Hill (she/they) is an interdisciplinary creative living and working on undeded Coast Salish territory. With an eclectic background in opera, theatre, dance, design, and digital marketing, they are passionate about bringing stories to life through stage and screen. As a marketing professional and graphic designer, Caitlin has honed their skills in the non-profit and arts and culture sector, most recently working for community arts hub PoMoArts before pursuing a Diploma of Graphic Design as BCIT.
When not at RADIUS, you can find Caitlin working as a freelance graphic designer for local arts organizations, on the board of Too Fly Productions, as well as performing and teaching dance all over the West Coast of “Canada” and the US.
Manager, First Peoples Enterprise Accelerator Program
Candice is the manager of the RBC First Peoples Enterprise Accelerator Program (FPEAP). This program works in partnership with Indigenous-led organizations to co-create entrepreneurship programming that will best serve their communities. The FPEAP is committed to delivering entrepreneurship programming with an Indigenous lens, upholding Indigenous knowledge and worldview. Candice believes that an economy that is dynamic, just, sustainable, and resilient is one that supports and is informed by the wisdom of Indigenous entrepreneurs. She wishes to centre this wisdom and strength within the FPEAP, and work with partners who do the same. Candice brings a background in social enterprise development within urban Indigenous organizations to her role, as well as an MBA in Social Enterprise Leadership from the University of Fredericton.
Candice is of Secwepemc, Chinese and European ancestry. Growing up in northern BC has given her a deep appreciation for the wild parts of this province…and within herself 😉 She lives for exploring both while on her DRZ400.
Indigenous Business Stories Project Casewriter
Carnation is a native of Zimbabwe who came to Canada at the turn of the century. She has the privilege of serving and living in First Nations communities delivering health care services and capacity building as a Registered Nurse and a Band Administrator. Through both of these roles, she has witnessed the power of storytelling to heal, reprimand and motivate people. First Nations communities have traditional ways of knowing that are embedded in their culture and she believes it’s important to highlight these stories to decolonize dominant frameworks so that minority frameworks are also given the spotlight.
Carnation was drawn to RADIUS because of the principles that the organization upholds — they resonate with her passion for advocating for marginalized groups to have better access to services and equal community development. As a case writer, Carnation will bring exciting skills and experience to the RADIUS team, including a lifelong writing passion since grade school, her ease with writing academic papers since undergraduate studies, and her current studies as part of her MBA program.
During her limited leisure time, she enjoys listening to podcasts and TED Talks, watching period dramas, hiking, and making Jeff Bezos rich bargain hunting on Amazon.
Program Manager, Equity-Centred Accelerator
Humaira believes life is bigger than we might imagine, and that kindness is always called for. She is the Lab Manager for the emerging Equity Centred Accelerator portfolio at RADIUS. The portfolio explores how to support Better Futures For More Of Us, starting with lifting up the good work folks are already doing in their communities to address the most pressing social, economic, and environmental challenges they face.
Humaira brings experience from a breadth of roles across industries, including early-stage startup coach and resource navigator, college instructor, bespoke event producer, and program designer in the non-profit sector. Her most valued roles are as Auntie, sibling, daughter, partner, and friend. Humaira holds certifications in community choir leadership, Movement Flow, and community capacity building, and holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of British Columba. A naturalized Canadian with Bengali heritage, she continues to weave formal learning with cultural teachings and a complex historical legacy.
She makes home on the lands of the Okanagan syilx with a sassy bunny, a loving partner, and a hearty appetite for potatoes.
Manager, Health Promotion Lab
Ilhan is a Somali-Canadian whose parents’ migration journey brought her to these unceded Coast Salish Lands at a very young age. Stemming from her family’s experience of being racialized newcomers, Ilhan has been passionate about addressing social and health inequities and developed a commitment to social justice. Having spent some time in community activism, youth work and health promotion in the Lower Mainlands of Vancouver, Ilhan then moved to Toronto to pursue her Masters in Public Health and gain a critical intersectional analysis on what promotes vulnerability to health inequities. She has recently returned to BC and is ecstatic to get involved in health equity and community work. When she’s not working, you can find her embarking on solo travels somewhere in the world.
Manager, Communications & Recruitment
Jessie is an empathetic communicator and digital media practitioner supporting RADIUS’ communications and programmatic recruitment portfolio. Previous to this role, she spent a decade in marketing and business development at a national LGBTQ2IA+ media organization.
Jessie’s interest in growing food and just food systems led her to a board position on a poverty reduction organization in Metro Vancouver, where she provided communications support. In 2019, she launched her own venture, a small-batch kombucha business.
Jessie is an alum of SFU’s School of Communication and Women + Gender Studies. She is a mother, daughter, sister, and settler living on Coast Salish Lands and can be found exploring farmers’ markets and vintage shops on weekends.
Associate Director, Education & Training
Leah is the Associate Director for the Education and Training Programs at RADIUS. Her leadership includes community and government partnerships on social innovation lab projects, social innovation education and training activities, and oversight of RADIUS social venture development, curriculum, and facilitation.
With over 20 years in the business, community, and educational sectors, Leah’s big-picture dream is to see innovation and creativity embedded into every corner of these sectors, while centering justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion. She has experience as a director, program manager, facilitator, faculty member, and consultant and has led the development, implementation, and assessment of multiple major institutional projects. Her work experience, research & publication areas, education, and passions are all grounded in understanding and advancing social innovation, equity, social-justice, intersectionality, and anti-racism.
Leah is a bi-racial, cis-gender woman who has spent the past 10 years raising her amazing daughter and working on the unceded territory of the Syilx (Okanagan) peoples. Her career and family has brought her back to the unceded Coast Salish Lands, and when she is not working, you can find her spending time with her daughter, exploring the beautiful lands on which we live, and continuing her research and learnings on all things social innovation and social justice!
Miranda is a Portfolio Manager joining the growing Consulting Services team at RADIUS. She is an experienced engagement specialist and project manager, from the tuberculosis and housing crises in Nunavut to campus action on the climate emergency. She is passionate about bringing together community, stakeholders, and decision-makers to make more people-centred, equitable and creative decisions, projects and policies. With a Masters in strategic management and planning from University College Dublin and ten years working in and consulting for public sector organizations, her interest is working with the messiness of human behaviour (emotions, power structures, etc.) in social innovation and civic leadership and engagement, and facilitating safe spaces for tough conversations and for underrepresented voices to shape their futures. Her worldview and ways of being have been rooted and influenced as a second-generation immigrant, her lineage of strong Chinese matriarchs, and as a settler born on Algonquin Anishinabe territory and spending the last 15 years on unceded Coast Salish territory.
When not working, she is an avid noodle-eater, runner, road tripper, outdoor adventurer with her little family, and founder and seamstress of a small clothing project nooi (a play on ‘neui’ 女, the Cantonese word for daughter) raising funds for community organizations. She is also the co-chair and board member of the hua foundation, a non-profit working towards racial equity and building civic engagement and capacity in the East Asian diaspora to work towards social change.
Manager, Refugee Livelihood Lab
Nada El Masry (she/her) is a Libyan-born Palestinian who came to the unceded land of the Coast Salish peoples just over 10 years ago. Due to her life experiences and education, Nada has fostered a deep passion for social justice and has shaped her life goals around values rooted in that field. She has been working with and engaging newcomers for several years, and currently manages the Refugee Livelihood Lab, which aims to build social, economic, and political capital for racialized refugee and migrant communities.
Nada is pursuing a Master’s in Equity Studies in Education at SFU, and was recipient of a 2019 BC Anti-Racism Award. She has also been nominated by the Future of Good as a 2020 Top 21 Founders to Watch, and received a 2018 Leadership Award from Voices of Muslim Women. In her free time, Nada enjoys playing and watching soccer.
Born and raised in Ghana, West Africa, Raphael has over five years of experience managing and coordinating community development projects such as Hope For Life, an initiative he co-founded in 2015 that aims to provide mentorship, motivation, and networking opportunities for students in deprived areas in Ghana.
Raphael was the youth program coordinator for DIVERSEcity, where he created youth-led settlement programs for newcomer and refugee youth with a trauma-informed approach, overseeing the growth of the portfolio.
In 2019, Raphael worked with RADIUS’ Health Promotion Lab as a research and evaluation officer. He coordinated the work of five health-promoting ventures and supported the Lab with evidence-informed research and analysis, helping to create a theory of change and evaluation plan.Raphael believes that systems change can effectively be achieved with a community-driven, multi-faceted, and inclusive approach that centres equity.
He holds a master’s degree in Political Science from SFU, specializing in public policy and international relations, and in his leisure time, loves to watch and play sports, especially soccer, basketball, and table tennis.
Shawn Smith is the co-founder and Director of RADIUS, as well as an Adjunct Professor at the Beedie School of Business and Director of Social Innovation for Simon Fraser University. Having spent the last 15 years working with, in and on social impact organizations on three continents, he is also a founder at several other organizations including IMPAQTO (Ecuador), Global Agents for Change and Education Generation, co-led the ALT/Now Economic Inequality systems change program at the Banff Centre, and speaks and consults regularly on social innovation and entrepreneurship.
Shawn is a top rated educator, Business in Vancouver top 40 under 40 recipient, and completed his MBA at the University of Oxford in 2010 as a Skoll Scholar in Social Entrepreneurship.
Shikhank has been actively involved in the social impact space academically and professionally for a number of years in areas of social innovation, impact investing, education, and sustainability.
His journey to grow and learn led him from his home in the vibrant city of Delhi in Northern India to North America over ten years ago. During this time, Shikhank has been grateful for the communities that he has been a part of, his own lived experiences, and the shared knowledge of those around him for helping him better his understanding of the world in all its brilliance and juxtapositions. Over the years, Shikhank has collaborated with various impact organizations – nonprofits, universities, and social enterprises – in roles and projects related to strategic planning, community engagement, capacity building, and research.
It brings Shikhank utmost joy when he is able to help individuals and groups facing a sticky issue related to an idea or a project have the “a-ha” moments where they are able to figure out a path forward.
Associate Director, Labs
I am many things. It’s a mix of beautiful with some unresolved learnings.
Here at RADIUS, I am one of the Associate Directors. I get fired up when I witness or am part of teams that challenge the conventions and embrace what it means to centre each other’s and our communities’ health in our decisions. And I get peaceful and soft inside when I see the team truly and vulnerably hold each other and cry/laugh at the size of the work ahead. What is asked of me and what I genuinely love to offer is to be a listener of the venting, a problem solver when asked, a truth-teller to the greater powers, a convener of creativity, and an astute strategist (which sounds yucky but is actually powerful). In some ways, I help nurture the environment, the nest, needed for this team to thrive at work and beyond and for this team to create the systemic change they want to see. I am immensely proud of this. And yet, sometimes, the responsibility of it all keeps me up at night.
At RADIUS, I also bring with me all of these other foundational identities I have. I am the daughter of Yvan & Diane, who decided long ago to live their lives differently than what was expected of them. I am a granddaughter, a sister, a friend, a lover, a colleague. Most recently, I added mother to this list. It’s an identity that has completely turned my world upside down, and I’m still grappling with all of its immensity. I am a heterosexual, cis-gender, non-visibly disabled, francophone white human of French and Scottish ancestry. I reside, as an uninvited guest, on the territories of the Squamish people. What RADIUS taught me is that my actions, more than my words, are the proof of how I walk this earth aware of these identities and the impact they have.
Oh, and I love food.
Project Manager, Refugee Livelihood Lab
Born and raised in Dubai (UAE), Yara is a Palestinian refugee who had felt detached from her ‘home’ in the Gaza Strip for the longest time. Now, having spent years contemplating and unlearning colonial narratives, she considers the meaning of statelessness, as well as how systems of power co-opt and shape refugee experiences. Prior to settling on unceded Coast Salish lands, Yara worked at the Delma Institute in Abu Dhabi as a MENA research analyst and as the deputy advisor and project coordinator for the UAE Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development. She completed her MA in International Studies at Simon Fraser University, where she was a Researcher for the Centre for Comparative Muslim Studies. In her spare time, Yara enjoys reading sci-fi, listening to heavy metal, and walking for long hours to nowhere in particular.