People Space: Colliers, Manulife, AY, Empire name new execs…

Managing Editor
  • Jan. 7, 2020
IMAGE: Ferial Sheybani has been hired as director of business solutions for Colliers International. (Courtesy Colliers)

Ferial Sheybani has been hired as director of business solutions for Colliers International. (Courtesy Colliers)

Ferial Sheybani has joined Colliers Canada as director of business solutions, bringing with her extensive experience as an IT and business transformation leader.

Sheybani joins Colliers (CIGI-T) from SNC-Lavalin, where she was the senior director of IT application delivery for infrastructure construction projects and head of IT for the operation and maintenance division. She oversaw the operation and expansion of the full IT ecosystem, managing application delivery and operation across the team.

Sheybani also worked as a management consultant to numerous organizations and spent two years as the director for transformation services with Telus Health.

Her experience includes supervision of large teams of technology and project management professionals. She has also managed planning and implementation of IT projects across many industries including health care, telecommunications, financial, energy, insurance, legal, construction and engineering.

Misutka new COO at Imperial Equities

Imperial Equities Inc. (IEI-X) has appointed Patricia Misutka as COO. Misutka will lead strategy development, operational procedures and external relations activities. 

“With our increasingly complex investment portfolio, a challenging economic context and our ambitious plans for future growth, Patricia’s perceptive strategic insights and operational expertise are poised to help us focus, refine and improve our internal processes and ready ourselves for future growth,” said Imperial CEO Sine Chadi in a release.

Her background includes extensive experience in corporate strategy, stakeholder issues, policy development and issues management, and in advising private and public sector clients and government and non-profit organizations.

Misutka served as principal secretary to Alberta premier Jim Prentice (2014-’15) and as chief of staff to Edmonton mayor Stephen Mandel (2004-’13). 

She has also completed course work toward her PhD at University of Victoria, Gustavson School of Business focusing on international business and sustainability.  

Based in Edmonton, Imperial Equities Inc. is a publicly traded company anchored by commercial and industrial real estate properties in targeted markets throughout Western Canada.

Gordon to head Manulife’s Canadian RE

IMAGE: Scott Gordon has been named Manulife Investment Management's senior managing director, head of real estate asset management for Canada. (Courtesy Manulife)

Scott Gordon has been named Manulife Investment Management’s senior managing director, head of real estate asset management for Canada. (Courtesy Manulife)

Manulife Investment Management named Scott Gordon its senior managing director, head of real estate asset management for Canada. Based in Toronto, Gordon will oversee Manulife’s Canadian real estate investment assets.

He will be responsible for enhancing portfolio performance through accretive asset management as well as leading due diligence of new markets.

Previously, Gordon was the executive director, Canadian investments at Starlight Investments Ltd. where he was responsible for the execution of all acquisitions, dispositions and financing of multifamily assets within Canada.

Prior to joining Starlight, he held progressive positions with Brookfield Office Properties in New York, working in Brookfield’s acquisitions/capital markets and development groups before moving in 2012 to Brookfield’s real estate private equity team in Toronto.

Gordon received his bachelor of commerce in marketing and entrepreneurship from McGill University and completed his masters of professional studies in real estate at Cornell.

Williamson, Pedersen join AY

Ken Williamson and Carl Pedersen have joined Avison Young’s Edmonton office as principals. They’ll be charged with helping grow AY’s expertise in energy markets throughout Alberta.

“Ken and Carl are a highly effective team who have honed their partnership for the past seven years, building an extensive body of work throughout Alberta’s energy markets,” said Cory Wosnack, principal and managing director of the Edmonton region.

Williamson and Pedersen bring to Avison Young a combined 37 years of commercial real estate experience. Williamson was a senior vice-president and Pedersen was an associate vice-president with Colliers International.

Prior to entering commercial real estate, Williamson was a CF-18 pilot, decorated for his service with NATO and in the Gulf War. Pedersen, with a background in finance, has completed more than 300 transactions in the commercial real estate industry.

Also joining Avison Young in Edmonton from Colliers are Marjorie Elliott and Jason Williamson, both as associates.

Empire Communities names two new execs

IMAGE: Tony Pucci is the new Senior vice president of product innovation at Empire Communities. (Courtesy Empire Communities)

Tony Pucci is the new senior vice-president of product innovation at Empire Communities. (Courtesy Empire Communities)

Empire Communities in Vaughan, Ont., has appointed Tony Pucci to set up and lead its new product innovation division as SVP, product innovation. Pucci has been a leader with Empire Communities for 20 years. His experience and background in architecture are perfectly suited to this new venture researching and evaluating advancements in residential construction and value engineering.  

In addition, Mark Tutton was named president, low-rise. Tutton most recently served as COO for Camrost Felcorp Inc. Tutton has held positions of increasing seniority including COO at Plazacorp Investments, SVP at Tribute Communities, and VP at Dorsay Development. Tutton holds a bachelor of applied arts in urban and regional planning from Ryerson University. 

“As Empire grows and with increasing affordability challenges in the residential sector, we have positioned ourselves with great leadership to continue to grow our low-rise business in Ontario and ensure that our products are at the upper echelon of quality, customer satisfaction and innovation,” said COO Tim Royds in a statement.

Empire is a residential builder/developer of both low‐rise and high‐rise built forms. Since its inception in 1993, Empire has built over 20,000 new homes and condos across North America.

Schwan new Tim Hortons president

Restaurant Brands International (QSR-T) CEO Jose Cil announced Axel Schwan will join the company’s global leadership team. Schwan was appointed the regional president of Tim Hortons for Canada and the U.S. in October. 

Schwan will add the Latin America region to his accountabilities. 

“I am very proud to welcome Axel to the leadership team. I have worked closely with him in Europe, the U.S. and now in Canada and he has proven himself to be a valuable leader of our Tim Hortons business, as well as a strong leader of people and teams,” said Cil in a release.

Additionally, Alex Macedo has chosen to leave the company in March 2020.

“Alex was invaluable in establishing a strong growth trajectory for Burger King in the United States and led Tim Hortons through a period of transition earlier last year,” Cil said.

RBI owns and manages over 26,000 restaurants including Tim Hortons, Burger King and Popeyes.

 Tremblay joins CAPREIT board

CAPREIT (CAR-UN-T) has appointed René Tremblay to its board of trustees. Tremblay has over 35 years of real estate experience and has been involved in investment in numerous countries, including Brazil, Poland, France, Scotland, Spain, China, South Korea, Mexico, Germany, Canada, Luxembourg, Russia, Turkey and the United States.

Tremblay joined Taubman Centers in 2010 as president of Taubman Asia, responsible for driving Taubman’s shopping centre expansion region. He is the chair of Cominar REIT and a board member of Cogir Real Estate and the International Council of Shopping Centres. 

CAPREIT manages over 64,000 residential rental apartment and townhouse suites and manufactured home community sites in Canada, the Netherlands and Ireland.

Gifford becomes CEO at REFBC

IMAGE: The Real Estate Foundation of BC has selected Mark Gifford as CEO. (Photo courtesy Sarah Race / REFBC)

The Real Estate Foundation of BC has selected Mark Gifford as CEO. (Photo courtesy Sarah Race / REFBC)

The Real Estate Foundation of BC has selected Mark Gifford as CEO. He will assume the role in February, as long-time CEO Jack Wong retires at the end of March.

Gifford’s background includes over 20 years of executive and philanthropic leadership experience. Currently, Gifford is executive director at the Kiwassa Neighbourhood House in East Vancouver. Previously, he held managerial roles at the Vancouver Foundation and the Fund for Children at the Philadelphia Foundation.

The Real Estate Foundation of BC is a philanthropic organization that works to advance sustainable land use.

Slavens retires from Altus board

Altus Group (AIF-T) announced long-time director and past audit board chair Eric Slavens has retired. The position of chair of the audit committee was transitioned to Janet Woodruff in 2019.

“When Eric first joined the board, Altus Group was a Canadian consultancy with approximately 300 employees and approximately $60 million in revenues,” said board chair Raymond Mikulich in a release.

“Today, we are a global company with over 2,500 employees, serving clients with diversified offerings spanning services, software and data solutions, generating over $500 million in annual revenues with exciting growth opportunities ahead.” 

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article has been updated to correct erroneous information about Ferial Sheybani’s previous position. That information had been supplied to RENX in an email announcing her new role.


Don is a veteran editor and journalist with three decades of experience in print and online news, including 20 years at the Ottawa Sun. Most recently, he was the Sun’s…

Read more

Don is a veteran editor and journalist with three decades of experience in print and online news, including 20 years at the Ottawa Sun. Most recently, he was the Sun’s…

Read more





Industry Events