Team

Executive

Robert Hornung

President & CEO

As the founding President and CEO of the Canadian Renewable Energy Association (CanREA), Robert Hornung leads a member-based organization focused on ensuring that wind energy, solar energy and energy storage play a central role in transforming Canada’s energy mix. He was the longstanding president of the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA), which united with the Canadian Solar Industries Association (CanSIA) to form CanREA. Robert previously worked on climate-change issues with the Pembina Institute and Environment Canada, among other organizations. He serves on the Advisory Council of Positive Energy, a University of Ottawa research project that seeks to strengthen public confidence in Canadian energy policy. Robert is based in Ottawa.  

Wesley Johnston

Vice-President, Business Development, Finance and Operations

As CanREA’s Vice President, Business Development, Finance and Operations, Wesley Johnston provides business and organizational leadership and manages the membership and business-development team. In his previous role as President and CEO at the Canadian Solar Industries Association, he led its merger with CanWEA to form CanREA in 2020. Wes holds an MBA (Queen’s University), a MAES focusing on the economic benefits of renewable energy (University of Waterloo) and a BBA in Business and Economics (University of PEI). Wes has been passionate about renewables ever since installing a solar water-heating system on his first home in PEI, back in 2004. Wes is based in Ottawa.

Brandy Giannetta

Vice-President, Policy, Regulatory and Government Affairs

As CanREA’s Vice-President of Policy, Regulatory & Government Affairs, Brandy Giannetta leads the Association’s stakeholder advocacy and public engagement efforts throughout Canada. She was the Ontario Regional Director at CanWEA for eight years previously. She has also worked as a political staffer at Queen’s Park and as an administrator of the NRCan Home Energy Retrofit Program. Brandy holds an MA in Political Science and Public Policy from the University of Windsor. She currently serves as Vice-Chair of the Stakeholder Advisory Committee at the Ontario Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO). Brandy is based in Toronto.

Policy and Government Affairs

Nicholas Gall

Director, Distributed Energy Resources

As CanREA’s Director, Distributed Energy Resources, Nicholas Gall leads policy development and advocacy on issues related to DERs across Canada. Prior to joining CanREA, he worked as a Senior Policy Analyst at Solar Energy UK, and in Ottawa in government relations and advocacy within the environmental sector. Nick holds an MSc in economics with a focus on energy and environmental policy from University College London, a BA in economics from Dalhousie University and a certificate in climate and renewable-energy finance from the Frankfurt School of Finance and Management. Nick is based in Ottawa.   

Jean Habel

Director for Quebec and Atlantic Canada

As CanREA’s Director for Quebec and Atlantic Canada, Jean Habel serves as CanREA’s bilingual key representative and spokesperson in these regions. He leads the Quebec Caucus and the Nova Scotia Caucus, working closely with CanREA members. Prior to joining CanREA, he was Senior Advisor, Public & Government Affairs at the Association québécoise des pharmaciens propriétaires for two years, and the MNA for Sainte-Rose (Laval) for four years before that. Jean holds a BBA from HEC Montréal and is a CPA. In his spare time, he enjoys sports and outdoor activities. Jean is based in the Montreal area.

Phil McKay

Senior Director, Operations

As CanREA’s Senior Director, Operations, Phil McKay leads the Operations Caucus, with committees on health & safety, workforce development, grid integration, site operations and construction & decommissioning. He also spearheads CanREA’s data-analysis and cyber-security efforts. He was in a similar role at CanWEA for four years, where he formalized operation and maintenance best practices for the industry. Prior to this, Phil worked as an engineer at the Wind Energy Institute of Canada, and in automotive thermodynamics. He holds a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Windsor, specializing in the group dynamics of commercial-scale wind turbines. Phil is based in Southern Ontario.  

Leonard Olien

Director, Energy Storage

As CanREA’s Director for Energy Storage, Leonard Olien designs and implements the Association’s plan for advancing energy storage in Canada. Leonard started performing storage-dispatch analysis in 2011 and has spent many years as a consultant in electricity markets and renewable energy in Canada, the US and Ireland. He holds an MSc in Mathematics from McGill University and is currently pursuing a PhD in Mathematical Finance at the University of Calgary. When not working, Leonard can be spotted racing about the city on his e-bike. Leonard is based in Calgary.  

Evan Wilson

Senior Director, Western Canada

As CanREA’s Senior Director, Western Canada, Evan Wilson represents members in Alberta and Saskatchewan. He previously served as Regional Director, Prairies, for the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA), where he worked in the same provinces. Prior to joining CanWEA, he worked for three years with the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association, and for four years with Global Public Affairs, where he was a consultant on transportation and energy files. Evan has an MA in Political Science from the University of Calgary. He is based in Calgary.  

Business Development, Finance and Operations

Sharon Fryer

Events Manager

As CanREA’s Events Manager, Sharon Fryer skilfully executes the Association’s events, including national conferences, regional golf tournaments and networking receptions, and webinars and other virtual events. She came to CanREA from CanWEA, where she was the Manager of Meetings and Events for 13 years. She is a Certified Meeting Professional with a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Guelph. In her spare time, Sharon was a competitive gymnast who coached rhythmic gymnastics for more than 30 years. Sharon is based in Stittsville, Ontario.

Julie Mair

Membership and Business Development Manager

As CanREA’s Membership and Business Development Manager, Julie Mair implements the Association’s strong member-benefits program and facilitates partner relationships and sponsorships. Prior to the launch of CanREA in 2020, Julie was the Membership and Business Development Manager at the Canadian Solar Industries Association (CanSIA). She previously managed member services at BIOTECanada, served with the Public Health Agency of Canada, and managed residential group homes for people with developmental disabilities for nearly two decades. Julie is based in Ottawa and, as an avid hockey fan, she proudly supports the Ottawa Senators.  

Norma Panetta

Membership and Business Development Specialist

As CanREA’s Membership and Business Development Specialist, Norma Panetta delivers a member experience going above and beyond the ordinary. She was CanWEA’s Member Program Specialist for five years prior to the launch of CanREA. Her previous experience also includes administration, marketing, graphic design and communications. Norma holds a diploma in graphic design from St. Lawrence College in Kingston, Ontario, as well as certificates in web design, JavaScript and CSS. She is currently the Co-Lead of the Ottawa Chapter for Women in Renewable Energy and enjoys cycling, painting, and spending time with her cat.

Sandi Wensink

Finance & Operations Manager

As CanREA’s Finance and Operations Manager, Sandi Wensink ensures CanREA’s books are balanced, its HR policies are optimized and its internal operations are on point. She was previously CanWEA’s Finance Officer for three years, and before that was in a similar role for 23 years at another not-for-profit association. In her spare time, Sandi is an avid soccer player and crafter, and loves spending time with her grandkids. She is based in Ottawa.

Communications

Bridget Wayland

Director of Communications

As CanREA’s Director of Communications, Bridget Wayland leads a coordinated effort to inform and engage target audiences about the key role that wind, solar and energy-storage technologies will play in achieving Canada’s climate-change targets. Bridget is a veteran, bilingual communicator with 20+ years of experience in Canadian environmental non-profits and national green publications, including ALUS Canada, Trans Canada Trail and Harrowsmith. She holds an MA in English and Creative Writing from Concordia University and a BA in Humanistic Studies from McGill. She likes to hike, grow native plants and write. Bridget is based in southern Quebec.

Katherine Picard

Bilingual Communications Manager 

As CanREA’s Bilingual Communications Manager, Katherine Picard leads a wide range of communications projects, including e-newsletters, publications and web development, ensuring they are top-notch in both English and French. She previously worked at the Medical Council of Canada for seven years, most recently as a Writer/Editor in Communications and Marketing. Katherine holds a BA in the study of conflict and human rights from the University of Ottawa. In her spare time, she likes to play classical music and movie soundtracks on the piano. Katherine is based in Quebec.

Lauren Scott

Communications Specialist

As CanREA’s Communications Specialist, Lauren Scott (she/they) delivers the association’s dynamic social media presence, coordinates media relations, and assists with all manner of communications and marketing projects. Lauren has a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton U and a certificate in data analytics. Prior to joining CanREA, they spent five years as a multimedia journalist and copy editor at such titles as the Waterloo Chronicle, Hamilton Spectator, Canadian Press and Annex Business Media, where they handled digital communications, websites, newsletters, social media and analytics. Lauren has a passion for sustainability and spends her free time hiking and watching horror movies. Lauren is based near Toronto.