Keynote Speakers

Keynote Speakers:

Panel Speakers:


His Worship, Larry O'Brien.
Mayor of Ottawa

In November 2006, an overwhelming number of voters elected Larry O’Brien, who had campaigned on a platform of commitment to fiscal responsibility and a focus on excellence in delivery of core municipal services, as Mayor of Ottawa.

A newcomer to politics, Mayor O’Brien stated his commitment to run the city on a more business-like basis, a task, as the former Chairman and CEO of CALIAN Technologies Ltd., for which he is uniquely suited.

The first focus for Mayor O’Brien was to halt the proposed, controversial LRT project and to guide Council to accept a “0%” tax increase budget for 2007. He implemented the Mayor’s Task Force on Transportation, which has led to the initiation of an environmental assessment for a downtown tunnel to relieve traffic stress in the city centre as a first phase of an extensive regional traffic and transportation plan; he changed the nature of the Trash debate from land fill to waste-to-energy; and has been successful in changing the agenda on social engineering projects, such as the City’s crack pipe program.

In April 2007, Mayor O’Brien announced “1,000 Days of TRANSFORMATION” as a way to focus city staff and Council on building a sustainable financial model for the city.

Mayor O’Brien was born in Ottawa and graduated from the Algonquin School of Technology 1972 with a diploma in Technology. He founded CALIAN in 1982 as a one-person consulting company and built it into an internationally competitive technology firm, a testimony to his commitment, work ethic, strong values and fiscal prudence.

Mayor O’Brien is a past member of the Prime Minister’s Advisory Council on Science and Technology (ACST), a past chairman of the Sectoral Advisory Group on International Trade (SAGIT) on Information Technologies and Telecommunications (IT&T), as well as co-chair of the Regional Economic Diversification Opportunities (REDO) committee and chairman of the Canadian Advanced Technology Association (CATA) from 1994 until 1996.

He was co-chair of Saint Vincent Hospital’s capital campaign in 2004 that successfully achieved its goal of $7.5 million and in 2006 he was awarded the United Way Community Builder of the Year award.


Ray Mantha, P.Eng.
Executive Director, Asset Management
Ministry of Transportation Ontario

Ray Mantha has a distinguished career as an engineer and a generous volunteer. He has been with Ontario Ministry of Transportation for 31 years and has worked in both the head office and field operations environment in Engineering, Construction and Maintenance. In 2004, he became Chief Engineer for the Ministry and had responsibility for a broad range of policy, standard and procedure development for Ontario’s roadways.

In 2005, Ray Mantha became the Executive Director, Windsor Border Initiatives Implementation Group, a newly created MTO group dedicated to implementing all transportation initiatives at the Windsor Gateway, including the new Windsor-Detroit crossing, bi-national relationships, and Windsor/Essex gateway projects

Mr. Mantha was appointed Executive Director, Provincial Highways Management Division in 2006. He is responsible for the development of policies and standards associated with the management of the province’s highway network. This includes investment planning, contract management and operations including design, construction and maintenance of highways, as well as the continued delivery of Windsor border initiatives.

Ray continues to be very involved in community development.

He was elected to the national board of the YMCA in 1995 and served as its Chair from 1999 to 2002. Internationally, Ray has served for four years as Canada’s representative on the World Alliance of YMCA Executive Committee.

In 2006, the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers (CCPE) honoured Ray with a Meritorious Service Award for Community Service, which highlights engineering excellence as well as contributions to the profession, community, and to the safety and well-being of citizens. Similarly in 2001, Ray received PEO's Citizenship Award for contributions to the engineering profession and Ontario’s cultural community.

Ray is also a long-time Rotarian, serving as President of the North Bay Rotary Club on 1996, and an active participant in the North Bay chapter of the Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), in the North Bay Canoe Club and North Bay Ski Racers.


Kathy Bethany
Office of Cost Management, US Department of State

Ms. Bethany is the Director of the Office of Cost Management, a position she has held since June 2007. The office identifies all costs associated with OBO work, during all stages of project development from concept to construction completion. This results in multiple current working estimates and independent government estimates per project. Cost management maintains historical cost data; performs analysis of system costs and constant verification that design and budget are in sync. The office identifies, with project teams, project risk items then quantifies these risks in the cost estimates. Cost Management is also responsible for OBO’s Value Engineering program. This program recommends alternatives to project management that improve function and value to the US taxpayers. Cost Management has 25 employees that include twenty cost managers and two value engineers. In addition, the office uses several 3rd party contractors to achieve its mission.

Positions held at OBO before becoming the Cost Management Director, include Value Engineering (VE) manager and Configuration Manager/A/E Liability Coordinator. Other positions in her 25+ years of Government employment include: Cost Estimating Branch Chief, Project Manager, Cost Estimator, and Scheduler at the Voice of America; Project Controls Specialist at Sandia National Laboratory; Civil Engineer with the Department of Army, Training and Doctrine Command; Engineering Aide for the US Army Corps of Engineers, Middle East Division, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Kathy has held several positions on the Board of Directors for been SAVE International, the Value Society. She has participated in Construction Industry Institute (CII) activities including: a member of the CII Education Material Development Board; team leader of the CII Scope Control and Change Management Education Team; and Chair of CII’s Value Management Toolkit Development Team.

Kathy has presented/published technical papers at SAVE International and CII conferences, and in “Value World.” She has received numerous awards and recognition for her work.

Ms. Bethany is a Certified Value Specialist. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from Old Dominion University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of New Mexico.


David Wilson, P.Eng., CVS, CPF
SAVE International President

David Wilson is a Certified Value Specialist and a Certified Professional Facilitator with NCE Value Engineers Inc. in Markham, ON. He is a professional engineer in five provinces with over 27 years of experience in the planning, design, construction, and maintenance of capital-intensive projects and 14 years as a value professional. As a value professional, David has led or been involved in over 250 value studies of building, infrastructure, transportation/transit, healthcare, institutional, and energy projects in the United States, Canada, Middle East, and the Caribbean. He is actively involved in the value community as a member of the Canadian Society of Value Analysis, Institute of Value Management, and SAVE International (worldwide accreditation organization for value certification). He currently serves as the President of SAVE International.

Marie Lemay, P.Eng, ing.
Chief Executive Officer


National Capital Commission

In January 2008, Marie Lemay became chief executive officer (CEO) of the National Capital Commission (NCC), the first to occupy this position since the role of chair and CEO was split into two positions. In her role as the inaugural CEO, she is leading the drive to make the NCC a more dynamic and transparent organization, one that engages in collaborative partnerships to ensure that the Capital continues to develop as a true reflection of Canada and Canadians. Her commitment to environmentally sustainable practices has led to the introduction of the NCC’s Environmental Strategy, with the objective of making the nation’s capital an environmental leader.

Ms. Lemay is a professional engineer: she graduated from the University of Ottawa (1983), is a member of the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec (OIQ) and Professional Engineers Ontario, and a fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering. As an engineer, she served the City of Gatineau (1986 to 1995), first as a project manager involved in infrastructure and new city developments, and later as chief of the project development division. Ms. Lemay also worked for the Municipality of Chelsea (1995 to 2000), initially as director of technical services and subsequently as director general. She has gained a national perspective during her career by living, travelling and working in Canada, notably during her seven years as CEO of Engineers Canada, a national organization that represents some 160,000 engineers and 12 provincial and territorial regulatory bodies. In 2005, Gatineau’s Chamber of Commerce named Ms. Lemay Engineer of the Year and presented her with the Excelor 2005 award for her contribution to the social and economic development of the region. In 2006, the OIQ presented her with the Mérite du Conseil interprofessionnel du Québec to honour her outstanding service as an ambassador for her profession. She was selected as the recipient of the 2009 Faculty of Engineering Alumni Excellence Award by the University of Ottawa.

Ms. Lemay continues to develop her strong ties with her local and national communities. She is a member of the University of Ottawa’s Board of Governors, and she sits on the Board of Directors of the Regroupement des gens d’affaires de la capitale nationale.


Graham Bird, P.Eng

Since graduating from Applied Science at Queen’s, Graham has gained experience in the practice of engineering, politics, and the management of major real estate development. With more that 20 years of experience in the development business, Graham has managed a wide variety of multidisciplinary projects and related activities for both the public and private sectors.

Graham is noted for understanding the business requirements of development. He understands the need for building design solutions and processes, which are flexible and respond to the requirements of the client or market in a timely fashion.

Graham and his project specific teams of architects and engineers have been successful in meeting the project objectives, working through complex processes and key elements such as the financial parameters, design and development parameters, and ongoing operational requirements.

Graham has experiences in all types of challenges involved in the development of institutional, commercial, residential, and mixed-use projects, through all of the applicable phases such as planning, marketing, financing, approval and implementation.

During the past 15 years Graham has been an integral part of resolving and managing complex development projects using the ‘public private partnership’ or P3 methodology. He is President of GBAssociates, a development and project management company which focuses on alternative financing solutions. Currently, GBA is leading the Ottawa Convention Centre redevelopment project, working with the City of Ottawa on the Lansdowne Partnership Plan and providing development advisory services to the Bank of Canada renewal project, amongst others.

Don H Stafford, CVS

Don H Stafford is an internationally recognized Value Engineering practitioner, having conducted over 300 Value Engineering studies over the past 26 years for clients across North America. He is President of Robinson, Stafford & Rude, Inc., U.S. Value Engineering firm. He is a former national board member of SAVE International, and currently a member of the SAVE International Certification Board, the SAVE International Board of Directors, and is Vice President of SAVE Education. The VE studies conducted under Mr. Stafford’s direction have saved his clients over two billion dollars. He was instrumental in setting up the Value Engineering program at the Ontario Ministry of Transportation in the late 1990s. He has been teaching Value Engineering for more than 15 years, including serving as a guest lecturer at the University of Washington, the American Society of Civil Engineers, The Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering, SAVE International and others. He has conducted Value Engineering studies for more than 50 City, County, State and federal government agencies, including Calgary, Vancouver, Toronto, New York, Seattle, San Diego, San Francisco, Tucson, The Province of Ontario, the States of Florida, Washington and Utah, and the U.S. Army, Navy and Coast Guard.


Alain LeBlanc
CD, MSc, MEng

Alain LeBlanc is a graduate of the Royal Military College of Canada in Mechanical Engineering, with postgraduate studies at Queen's and McGill Universities. He has over 25 years of experience in Value Engineering, risk management, and project management in the Canadian Forces, large utility projects, aerospace product development, and supply chain management. Alain has been a member of the CSVA since its foundation in 1993 and has since held different positions including four years as President.


Lucie Parrot, CVS

Mrs. Parrot is an industrial engineer. Since 1991, she has been involved in optimization projects of products or processes, using the Value Engineering methods. She has worked before in the aerospace and IT sectors. As a Value Engineering consultant, Mrs. Parrot has helped numerous clients increase the value of their products or services, .services, by reducing costs and/or increasing the performance and the needs satisfaction. This approach has been used successfully at small and large companies. She implements the methodology more and more often in the development of new innovative products. Mrs. Parrot has facilitated over 200 workshops. She is a certified value specialist from the Society of American Value Engineers (SAVE International) and is a member of the Canadian Society for Value Analysis, which gave her in 2003 an award for her outstanding contribution to the methodology. In 2007, she received the life certification from SAVE International.