The Future of Toronto Real Estate — Bios

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Philip Preville, Host

As a contributing editor with Toronto Life, Philip Preville writes regularly on city politics, public infrastructure, urban living and civic mythology. Preville has written extensively on Toronto’s rapid metamorphosis from a settled and orderly city of neighbourhoods to a dense, towering glass metropolis. His work chronicles the transformation of Toronto’s urban landscape, the upheavals in the lives of its residents, and the city’s shifting sense of itself and its place in the world. Preville is a National Magazine Award winner and a former Canadian Journalism Fellow at Massey College in the University of Toronto.

Craig Alexander, Panellist

Craig Alexander is the senior vice-president and chief economist for TD Bank Group. In that role, he manages a large team of economists that supports all of the divisions and clients of TD—the second-largest bank in Canada and the eighth-largest bank in the United States. Alexander has 18 years of experience in the private sector as an economic and financial forecaster. He is also a regular commentator on public policy. Prior to joining the private sector, Craig spent four years as an economist at Statistics Canada.

Each year, Alexander travels across the United States and Canada speaking at more than a hundred events about economic and financial developments. He researches and writes on a wide array of subjects. In addition to his role at TD, Alexander is a strong advocate for the cause of literacy, for which he was recently awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, and is a champion of the charitable sector. He also serves on the board of directors for several non-profit groups. Alexander is a trustee of two pension plans and is on the editorial board for the quarterly journal Canadian Public Policy. Alexander is the former two-term president of the Canadian Association for Business Economics. He holds a graduate degree in economics from the University of Toronto.

Paul Bedford, Panellist

Paul Bedford is a member and Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Planners with 45 years of experience in urban planning. As Toronto’s chief city planner for eight years, he championed numerous innovative planning strategies for the King-Spadina and King-Parliament districts, a new city-wide Official Plan and a principles plan for the Central Waterfront called Making Waves. He served eight mayors over his 31-year career at the City of Toronto

Since his retirement in 2004, he has been appointed adjunct professor of urban and regional planning at the University of Toronto and Ryerson University. He also serves on the National Capital Commission’s Planning Advisory Committee, the Waterfront Toronto Design Review Panel and the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health Property Committee, and is a senior associate of the Canadian Urban Institute.

He served two terms on the Metrolinx board of directors and in September 2013 was appointed by Premier Kathleen Wynne as vice-chair of the Transit Investment Strategy Advisory Panel. He is passionate about Toronto and is actively involved in the life of the city.

Paul Golini Jr., Panellist

Paul Golini is the executive vice-president and co-founder of Empire Communities, a leading Ontario-based real estate development company. In addition to his role at Empire, Golini Jr. was the chair of the Building Industry and Land Development Association from 2011–2012, and a tireless champion of ethical building practices as they relate to the environment. He remains an active member at BILD as a board member and co-chair of the Builder Council.

He was a member of the steering committee for the Canada Green Building Council LEED Canada for Homes Project. He is a member of the EnerQuality Corporation board of directors, and president on the board of directors for Toronto’s Italian Contemporary Film Festival.

Golini Jr. has been an advisory council member at Habitat for Humanity Toronto since 2012 and was most recently appointed to the Tarion Warranty Corporation board of directors.

Eve Lewis, Panellist

Eve Lewis has been active in the Toronto real estate and development industry for almost three decades. She is founder and principal of Toronto condominium market research company Urbanation Inc., and of Toronto-based residential condominium marketing experts, MarketVision Real Estate Corp. Under her direction and expertise, these two organizations have achieved unsurpassed success and have gained a reputation of excellence. In partnership with an array of industry-leading clientele, MarketVision has successfully marketed and sold close to 22,000 residential units since its inception in 1993, and Urbanation has come to be regarded across the GTA as the foremost authority on condominium market research and data analytics.

In addition to these two ventures, in 2011 Lewis assumed the position of president and CEO of Woodcliffe Landmark Properties, a real estate company focused on developing and managing heritage properties in the Summerhill and St. Lawrence neighbourhoods of Toronto.

Like her late husband, the passionate urban visionary Paul Oberman, Lewis is committed to the enhancement and preservation of architectural landmarks that reflect the rich heritage of the local community. The projects under Woodcliffe’s portfolio continue to garner recognition as definitive examples of expertly-executed urban renewal initiatives, having been honoured with awards such as the Governor General’s Award for Architecture, the Heritage Canada Foundation Corporate Award, and several City of Toronto Urban Design awards.

Lewis’ expert insights, passion for her craft, tireless dedication, and in-depth industry knowledge are complemented by her involvement in local organizations, and by her unwavering commitment to her family, friends, and community at large.

Mazyar Mortazavi, Panellist

Mazyar Mortazavi, president and CEO of TAS, is a prominent Toronto city builder with a passion for community-based initiatives. As an entrepreneur for the public good, Mortazavi operates on the philosophy that connected communities lead to more beautiful, resilient cities. With this passion for cities, he spearheads building projects and initiatives that support local economy, celebrate culture and art, prioritize sustainability, and foster positive neighbourhood relationships.

TAS was founded in 1983 by Mortazavi’s parents, Babak and Tooran, who established the company as a custom home builder. After receiving his undergraduate degree in environmental studies and master’s in architecture from the University of Waterloo, Mortazavi joined the family business. Under his direction, TAS is on the leading edge of change, developing beautifully designed buildings in multiple emerging urban neighbourhoods. Aesthetics aside, Mortazavi is committed to creating communities that follow TAS’s Four Pillars of Sustainability, which highlight the company’s commitment to social, cultural, economic and environmental impact. Over the past 15 years, he has applied a progressive, environmental approach to the business, earning B Corp certification.

In 2012, Mortazavi launched TAS’s real estate fund, which he now oversees as managing partner. The TAS DesignBuild LP was a founding member of the SVX, an initiative spearheaded by MaRS and the TSX Group, and is the only accredited real estate fund in the Social Impact Investment space.

Mortazavi’s passion for community-based initiatives and his understanding of the socio-cultural underpinnings of design and development have played a guiding role in his work. He is actively involved with a variety of different not-for-profit and community groups: Mortazavi currently sits on the board of Artscape and the Artscape Foundation, and formerly chaired the Foundation’s Board. He instructs at George Brown College’s Institute Without Boundaries, and chairs its Professional Advisory Committee.


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