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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

Learn more about Indigenous Education and Cultural Services

Keynote speaker

Gina McCarthy photo

Gina McCarthy, Former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator, Director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment and Professor, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

A passionate advocate for sustainability, public health and environmental protection, addressing climate change and increasing renewable resources, Gina McCarthy is one of the world’s most respected voices on the critical interconnection between the environment and global public health. For more than 30 years as a career public servant in both Democratic and Republican administrations, and now, at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, she has championed common sense strategies that protect the environment and public health while fostering economic growth.

McCarthy gained international recognition as head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under President Obama, leading historic progress to achieve the administration’s public health and environmental protection goals and Climate Action Plan. In 2015, McCarthy signed the Clean Power Plan, which set the first-ever national standards for reducing carbon emissions from existing power plants, underscoring the country’s commitment to domestic climate action and spurring international efforts that helped secure the Paris Climate Agreement. During her tenure, EPA initiatives cut air pollution, protected water resources, reduced greenhouse gases and strengthened chemical safety to better protect more Americans, especially the most vulnerable, from negative health impacts. Internationally, McCarthy worked with the UN and World Health Organization on a variety of efforts and represented the U.S. on global initiatives to reduce high risk sources of pollution.

McCarthy has earned the respect of the environmental, public health and business communities with her thorough understanding of all sides of climate, air quality, chemical safety, environmental justice and health equity, and water, land and natural resource protection and restoration discussions. 

McCarthy now serves as Director of Harvard Chan’s Center for Health and the Global Environment, leading the development of the School’s strategy in climate science, health and sustainability. Previously, she was both a Menschel Senior Leadership Fellow at Harvard T.H. Chan and a Senior Fellow at the Institute of Politics at Harvard Kennedy School. Before joining EPA, she served five Massachusetts Democratic and Republican administrations and was Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection. She joined EPA in 2009 as Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation. 

For more information on this Speaker, please visit apbspeakers.com