Our Team 

The CivicAction team makes up the staff for both CivicAction and the CivicAction Leadership Foundation.

View Civic Action Leadership Foundation

Our Team

Who We Are

Leslie Woo

Chief Executive Officer

Leslie Woo

Chief Executive Officer

Leslie Woo is a respected leader with over 25 years of experience building sustainable communities and shaping urban development in Canadas fastest-growing urban region, greater Toronto. Leslie assumed the role of CEO at CivicAction in September 2020. CivicAction is a premier civic engagement organization that convenes established and rising leaders from all sectors, backgrounds and experiences, CivicAction catalyzes actions and impactful solutions to address pressing challenges in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area and beyond. Before joining CivicAction, Leslie was at Metrolinx for over a decade including her time as Metrolinx Chief Planning and Development Officer. Leslie is a tri-sector athlete with experience in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors as well as her experience as a planner, architect and community activator. An accomplished leader, Leslie was named One of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in 2017 by WXN, Spacing Torontos Transit Changemaker in 2016 and Canadas Womens Infrastructure Networks 2015 Outstanding Leader. Founder of shebuildscities.org, Leslie uses her voice and platform to amplify and celebrate other women city builders.

Chris Adams

Chief Financial Officer

Chris Adams

Chief Financial Officer

Chris runs an accounting firm based out of MARS that serves primarily start-up technology companies along with other Toronto-based non-profit organizations. He has served as CivicActions CFO since 2009 supporting the CivicAction Board of Directors and Finance Committee. Chris lives in Etobicoke with his family and enjoys commuting by bicycle along the waterfront in the warmer months.

Hamna Awan

Hamna Awan

Manager of Communications and Marketing

Hamna Awan

Manager of Communications and Marketing

Hamna is a skilled storyteller who believes in the power of inclusive writing and its ability to elevate people. As the Manager of Communications and Marketing at CivicAction, she produces engaging content to connect with stakeholders and works to grow the CivicAction brand into a household name across the GTHA. Hamna brings over 6 years of communications experience primarily in the not-for-profit sector with a focus on public relations, developing campaigns that move people to action, and bringing innovative communications practices to life. Hamna holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Toronto and when she is not at her desk, she can be found practicing her backhand at the tennis court or sharing her life on Instagram.

Laraib Ashfaq

Project Lead, HireNext

Laraib Ashfaq

Project Lead, HireNext

Laraib Ashfaq holds an Honors BA in Psychology, Human Rights, and Equity Studies from York University. She has successfully integrated her passion for social justice and civic engagement by mentoring and inspiring youth to engage and become leaders in their community.

Before joining Civic Action, Laraib worked as a program coordinator for over 3 years in the nonprofit sector. She has and continues to highlight and address the gaps and barriers youth and newcomers face through her work. Laraib has curated programs that provide resources and information for youth and newcomers to become independent and successful in their academic, professional, or personal development. Laraib invests much of her time in youth as she believes that they deserve a seat at the table to have their voices heard. Laraib lives and works alongside her values and supports and advocates for human rights, mental health, and youth leadership. Laraib is excited to continue her work with Civic Action, which will allow her to impact more youth and contribute to an inclusive economy.

Laraib enjoys reading, cooking, and watching Netflix shows in her free time.

Photo of Leslie Domenico

Leslie Domenico

Program Director

Leslie Domenico

Program Director

Leslie is a program director with an extensive track record of delivering best-in-class programs for private sector and non-profit organizations. Since joining the organization Leslie has helped drive action on a number of social and environmental challenges in the region including reducing carbon emissions, supporting workplace mental health, and enabling workplaces to be more inclusive. Her career has included senior marketing and communications roles managing a variety of gold-standard programs for national and international clients. She has also contributed extensively to the success of several environmental non-profits organizations in the region. Leslie holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) and is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP).

Camilo Garay

Senior Manager, Development

Camilo Garay

Senior Manager, Development

Camilo Garay is a respected leader with over 5 years of experience in the not-for-profit sector and a relentless commitment to capacity building within diverse communities. Camilo is joining us from Visions of Science Network for Learning, where he served as the Director of Partnerships and Collaborations and was an instrumental member to their growth and success. Camilo finds great joy in building long-lasting partnerships, collaborating with multisectoral stakeholders, and developing creative solutions to community engagement that cultivate social and economic well being across the Greater Toronto Area.

As Camilo’s passion for civic engagement continues to grow, he has been fortunate enough to be elected to the Board of Governors at Ryerson University, elected as the Chair of the Toronto Community Housing Corporation Partnership Advisory Committee, selected as a member of FoodShare’s Advisory Committee, and selected as a 2020 CivicAction DiverseCity Fellow.

Camilo sees himself as a lifelong learner, disruptor, community-builder, and is passionate about building a vibrant, agile, and inventive Canada.

Janita Grift

Development and Operations Officer

Janita Grift

Development and Operations Officer

Janita is the Operations and Development Officer at CivicAction. She enjoys designing business processes and analytics to drive positive change in mission-driven nonprofit organizations.

Janita has over seven years of experience in the nonprofit sector. Prior to joining CivicAction, Janita spent 4 years working in music licensing operations roles at Entandem and Re:Sound. She has also held various roles in venue management, development and event production. Janita holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music Administrative Studies from Western University and a post-graduate certificate in Arts Administration and Cultural Management from Humber College.

In her free time, Janita enjoys yoga, playing piano, DJing, spending time outdoors and trying out different recipes. She also enjoys volunteering for various policy-driven nonprofits and keeps up-to-date on cultural and economic policy issues.

Sarah Hashem

Vice President – Partnerships and Development

Sarah Hashem

Vice President – Partnerships and Development

A proud 2014-15 DiverseCity Fellow and a social-impact strategist, Sarah leads our Partnerships and Development team, working closely with key members of Team Action and our Board to cultivate intentional and long-term relationships with donors and partners.

Prior to joining CivicAction, Sarah worked at Music Canada where she created a strategic framework to guide industry partnerships and initiatives. Sarah also spent 10 years fueling young Canadian enterprise at Futurpreneur Canada. She’s passionate about equity and economic empowerment and is committed to multiplying impact through collective action.

Emma Hosein

Project Officer, CivicMatch

Emma Hosein

Project Officer, CivicMatch

Emma (she/her) has more than six years of experience in the non-profit sector, in those years she worked on various projects striving to build community strength by facilitating access to resources, knowledge, and networks in the Greater Toronto/Hamilton Area. Joining the team early in 2022, Emma’s work at CivicAction contributes to her long time interest in working toward cultivating meaningful equity in urban spaces.

Emma holds an MSc in Gender, Development, and Globalization from the London School of Economics and Political Science where her research looked at the ways in which public policy measures impact women’s economic empowerment in unplanned urban settlements. Before that she completed her Honours BA from Victoria College at the University of Toronto. In addition to her degrees Emma has earned certificates in Public Policy Analysis and Modern Diplomacy from the London School of Economics and the United Nations University Institute on Comparative Regional Integration Studies, respectively.

When she’s not at work you can find Emma out for a run, searching for the best gluten free food in town, or helicopter parenting her two cats.

Brian Joe

Executive Assistant and Senior Advisor to the CEO

Brian Joe

Executive Assistant and Senior Advisor to the CEO

Brian Joe is the Executive Assistant and Senior Advisor to the CEO at CivicAction, and comes to with a background in community-based programming, organizing, and post-secondary education. His passion for sharing ideas, creating space, and building connection in urban environments lead him to earning both a Master of Information, focused on public libraries and critical information studies, and a Master of Museum Studies. He has worked on arts-based city-building projects, including local oral history projects, artist talks, and public art projects. Prior to joining CivicAction, Brian was a Graduate Program Coordinator at OCAD University for the Strategic Foresight and Innovation and Design for Health masters programs. He will draw on his experience in bringing people together under common interests and goals, and help make things happen. Brian is also a pop-culture junkie, and he is ready and willing to discuss the finer points of many made-up universes, including Star Trek, Star Wars, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Daniel Lynn

Senior Manager, Operations

Daniel Lynn

Senior Manager, Operations

Danny leads the overall Operations of both CivicAction and the Leadership Foundation. With over 20 years experience in the private sector, he has held multiple operational roles managing diverse teams across North America. A firm believer in servant leadership, as well as continuous, iterative improvement, and operational excellence, with the goal of “always doing it better”.

As a proud 2018/19 DiverseCity Fellow, Danny’s passion for civic engagement and inclusive communities, along with his “need to solve problems”, led him to join Team Action in January 2022.

Most days, you can find Danny on the Hamilton escarpment hiking the Bruce Trail with his dogs, or if the weather agrees, an open road on the motorcycle.

Rebecca Klaassen

Program Manager, Emerging Leaders Network

Rebecca Klaassen

Program Manager, Emerging Leaders Network

Rebecca is passionate about supporting young people to become more civically engaged, connected to their communities, and equipped to take action on issues they care about. As the Program Manager of the Emerging Leaders Network, she works alongside the ELN Executive Committee to connect, develop and activate over 2800 rising leaders from across the GTHA. Prior to joining CivicAction, Rebecca coordinated the Toronto RISE project for Apathy is Boring, where she supported youth in becoming more civically and democratically engaged, and was a co-facilitator for Amplify, a transatlantic youth dialogue. Previously, she facilitated programming in Uganda, Costa Rica and Fiji as a Program Director for Insight Global Education. Since completing her Bachelor of International Development and Globalization at the University of Ottawa, Rebecca has been interested in exploring how young people can engage with global issues in ethical, meaningful and impactful ways. She is a passionate public speaker, an avid reader, and a yoga teacher in training.

Yasmine Mohamed

Director – Activation

Yasmine Mohamed

Director – Activation

Yasmine Mohamed is a Director on CivicAction’s Activation team, where she leads the design and implementation of new programming, while also managing projects related to scaling and evolving existing programs. Yasmine is an experienced program leader, joining CivicAction from the Institute for Canadian Citizenship, where she provided strategic and operational leadership in shaping digital civic engagement projects that supported tens of thousands of new Canadians across Canada. Prior to this, Yasmine was the Director, Canoo, where she led the design and execution of a national program connecting new Canadian citizens to more than 1,400 arts and culture spaces across the country, used by +70,0000 new citizens annually.

Yasmine currently sits on the City of Toronto’s Programming Advisory Group for Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility supporting the city’s strategy for community engagement at Toronto’s history museums, and in 2019 was named one of the Top 21 Young Impact Leaders in Canada by Future of Good. With an academic anchoring in environmental racism (including an MA in Geography and Environmental Studies) as well as a diploma in Refugee and Migration Studies and certifications in user experience project management, she is well equipped to do the important work of building more equitable and inclusive cities. Yasmine enjoys spending time with her nephew, Aydin, and looks forward to camping and portaging every summer in Algonquin Provincial Park.

Stacey Murie

Development Manager

Stacey Murie

Development Manager

Stacey Murie is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) with over 10 years of experience working in the non-profit sector. Stacey is joining CivicAction from Horizons for Youth, where she served as the Manager of Development & Communications and played a leading role in growing their fundraising revenue by 198% in four years. She is passionate about working with diverse stakeholders to build strong, equitable and vibrant communities.

Previously, Stacey completed a master’s degree at the University of Toronto and her research analyzed the intersections between food insecurity, gender and race in Toronto. Stacey is excited to join CivicAction to help address the greatest challenges in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area and be part of innovative and meaningful change.

In her free time, Stacey enjoys hiking and biking, spending time with friends and family and discovering new recipes to bake.

Joanna Rodrigues

Project Manager

Joanna Rodrigues

Project Manager

Joanna Rodrigues joined CivicAction as a Project Manager in Summer 2021. She is an Equity Studies graduate from the University of Toronto. She has over 10 years of experience in project management, communications, and stakeholder management in a diversity of settings.

Prior to joining CivicAction, Joanna worked in the private sector on large-scale international projects. She has played integral roles in building companies from the ground up, including a successful public listing on the TSX, and securing over $30 million in private placements. Joanna completed the Certified Professional in Investor Relations (CPIR) program at Ivey Business School, a multidisciplinary certification program that includes capital markets, corporate governance, securities law, finance, and communications. Having spent the past few years in the private sector, Joanna is happy to be a part of CivicAction, and to work on issues that closely mirror her personal values.

In her free time, Joanna loves devouring novels, discovering new restaurants, and chasing after her two kids.

Jodie Rawn

Vice President – Activation

Jodie Rawn

Vice President – Activation

A member of the CivicAction team since March 2015, Jodie is an executive member of the CivicAction and the CivicAction Leadership Foundation leadership team. She leads all aspects of program development and advancement and is responsible for multi-year and long-range planning, outcome analytics and participant experience. Prior to this, Jodie led the launch of the CivicAction Leadership Foundation in 2016 and was responsible for the delivery of programming within the Foundation with a focus on identifying and preparing next-gen leaders.

Prior to CivicAction, Jodie held progressively senior roles with the Ontario government in key areas including marketing/communications, issues management, strategy, organizational transformation and leadership development. A graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University, she has completed certificate programs at both the Rotman & Schulich Schools of Business and is a past graduate of the Ontario government’s Leadership Development Program.

In 2019, she was recognized with a Star Metroland Media Urban Hero Award in the Social Issues category and, in 2020, co-founded the Hayden’s Hope Foundation to raise awareness of childhood cancer and support pediatric oncology families in southwestern Ontario.

quan tran

Quan Tran

Design and Digital Lead

Quan Tran

Design and Digital Lead

Quan Tran is the Digital and Design Lead at CivicAction.

She is passionate about bringing ideas to life and creating change through design. Prior to joining CivicAction, she worked with TEDxToronto, the Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic and Real Madrid Foundation.

Fun fact: she can type 92 words per minute.

Aman Vellani

Project Officer

Aman Vellani

Project Officer

Aman is joining CivicAction as a Project Officer. She holds a business degree from the Ivey Business School with a Certificate in Sustainability and brings her passion for the arts, culture, and community.

Prior to joining CivicAction, Aman worked at the Aga Khan Museum for 6 years in a dynamic role supporting public programming & visitor-facing operations. She managed both the contracting and ticketing administration for the Museum’s programs and was an important collaborator across departments internally, and with community partners, artists, performers, and presenters externally. She also played a hand in developing and implementing several institutional policies, procedures & best practices over the years.

Aman loves live music and finds joy in creative and crafty pursuits – most recently, tie-dying with dyes made from food scraps. She spends her free time reading email newsletters, perfecting her favourite recipes, and keeping up with the latest developments in sustainable fashion.