Industrial Program


Kazim Agha, Ridout & Maybee LLP

Symposia and Organizers: 

The four symposia below will take place on Wednesday, June 5, 2019.

Contract Research Organizations: Canadian Pharma Rebooted

Deborah Nicoll-Griffith, EndoParagon Inc. and President, Canadian Society for Chemistry

This symposium will feature chemistry and biochemistry leaders from several Canadian Contract Research Organizations (CROs) which deliver services across the pharma R&D continuum.  They will speak to the CRO model of operations and career opportunities for chemists in the CRO industry.  From 2007 to 2010, a huge reduction in pharmaceutical R&D spending occurred in Canada due to the closure of numerous Canadian R&D centers owned by multi-national pharmaceutical companies.1 Many Canadian chemists took the initiative to found contract research laboratories which support pharmaceutical R&D from discovery through preclinical and clinical testing.  In a recent study initiated by BioQuébec,2 CROs which provide services for the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries were identified as a major socio-economic engine.  In Québec, for example, some 71 CROs were identified with total revenues of greater than $550 million; encompassing more than 4300 employees with total annual salaries of $224 million.  Across Canada, as of 2016, some 325 CROs existed with the majority in British Columbia (40), Alberta (32), Ontario (153) and Québec (71).3

1 IMAP Global Pharma & Biotech M&A Report 2014.
2 Les Organisations de recherché contractuelle au Québec: Un moteur socio-économique fort pour le Québec.  2016.
3 Contract Research Map,  en ligne 1e mars 2016 et Etude de caractérisation KPMG: Caractérisation des ORC du Québec.  Janvier 2016.

Invited Speakers:
Sabitha Anchoori, SV ChemBioTech
Francis Beaulieu, OmegaChem
René Coulombe, IniXium
Marie Di Maso, COREALIS Pharma Inc.
Boris Gorin, Eurofins Alphora Research Inc.
Anahita Keyhani, Altasciences
Lisa Studnicki Hunt, GL Chemtec International Ltd.

*Submitted abstracts for this symposium will be considered for posters only. Please feel free to submit a poster abstract through the prescribed process for review.*

Chemistry for Sustainability: Sustainability in the Canadian Chemistry Industry

Ian Jobe, Executive Director, Chemical Institute of Canada

Sustainability encompasses much more than responsible environmental practices, green chemistry and engineering, and green house gas reduction.  Sustainability is a about addressing global challenges including those related to poverty, inequality, climate, environmental degradation, prosperity, and economic growth encompasses cities and communities, responsible consumption and production, innovation and infrastructure, education, good health and welling as well as occupational health and safety, and process safety.

In this session, we will learn from industry leaders

  • what sustainability means to their organizations and to them personally
  • how sustainability drives their company, the chemistry industry in Canada and globally
  • how sustainability is integral in doing the business of chemistry today

Join us to learn how Canadian chemistry industry is making a difference for society to make life healthier, easier and safer.

Students, academia, government scientific professionals, university and government administrators will learn and development knowledge around what a career in industry encompasses, learn about sustainability in the Chemistry Industry in Canada and expand your network of connections.

Invited Speakers:
Fred Godbille, Dupont
Zhongxin Zhou, Gilead Sciences
*Additional speakers to be announced shortly.*

*If you wish to submit a proposal for a talk, please feel free to submit an abstract through the prescribed process for review.*

Research --> Startup: What is That?

Adrien Côté, Velocity

Are you a researcher that believes the application of your work? Do you want to actually solve the grand challenges facing the world that inspired your thesis? You know careers in the sciences are not what they used to be and are up for a different career path? Capitalistic? Want to take your research to market, but not sure what the road from research to startup looks like? Curious where and how you build a science-based company? Want to know what it is like to work for a startup? Wonder what people who think this way are like? Then…

...the “Research --> Startup: What is That?” session is for you! We are going to do things differently and look to skip the PowerPoint and have founders of early stage chemistry-based companies share their journey and experiences. We’re going to really get into it and talk about all the tricky bits: financing, IP, hiring, and stress and the exciting bits: realizing personal missions, harvesting opportunities, and creating change through commercialization. We will also hear from those that help founders of science startups become successful and understand their observations of what works and what does not.

Inspiration and demystification are the goals of this session. You should come.

We are planning three panels on the following topics:

Panel 1: The founder journey
Ryan Marchewka, Halion Displays
Serxho Selmani, Carbon NanoPure
Christina Motillo, ACSYNAM, Inc.

Panel 2: What works and what doesn’t and who can help
Matt Heuft, Xerox Research Centre of Canada
Caroline Piché, Association for the Development and Innovation of Chemistry in Quebec
Jacques Simoneau, Univalor
Jim Skinner, FedDev

Panel 3: Town hall: Questions answered by those who are in the trenches

Additional panelists to be announced.

Call for panelists: If you are a founder, advisor, investor, incubator, or accelerator and are open to an ‘Ask Me Anything’ style of panel discussion, please tell us about your background and interest in participating by submitting an abstract into this session using the abstract submission form.

Cannabis in Canada: A Promising Industry for Chemical Professionals

Kyle Boniface, Zenabis Global Inc.

Canada’s 95-year prohibition on cannabis is over! In October 2018, Canada transitioned from a state of cannabis prohibition to cannabis regulation. Canadians are now able to purchase, possess, and use cannabis medically and recreationally. Increased global cannabis consumption and domestic cannabis production poses new challenges and opportunities for Canadian chemical professionals in the cannabis industry.

This symposium will feature talks from chemical professionals and industry experts, who have leadership roles within the cannabis industry. They will speak to their roles within the Licensed Producer model of operations, career opportunities for chemical professionals in the cannabis industry, and opportunities for academic and industry collaborations.

All are welcome to attend, join us to learn more.

Invited Speakers:
Jonathan Page, Aurora Cannabis Inc.
Natasha Ryz, Zenabis Global Inc.
Joshua Eades, Tilray
Judy Booth, UBC Michael Smith Labs

*If you wish to submit a proposal for a talk, please feel free to submit an abstract through the prescribed process for review.*