2017 OECD FORUM
Adam Camenzuli, Head Delegate
Sofiya Kominko, Communications Coordinator
Theresa Nadine Yurkewich
Ross Philip Linden-Fraser
Sara Elhawash, YDC Executive Representative, Recruitment Coordinator
Adam Camenzuli grew up in rural Ontario, Canada and has lived in Kilimanjaro, Tanzania for the last three years running a social enterprise empowering 20,000 people with his solar “hockey puck” lamps. Adam’s work experience spans the private (General Motors), public (Global Affairs Canada) and non-profit sectors (Street Kids International). With General Motors, he ran a production team of 50+ workers and with Street Kids International, he ran a year-long project empowering street youth in East Africa.
He holds an International Bachelor of Business Administration (iBBA) from the Schulich School of Business (York University), an Energy Innovation and Emerging Technologies Certificate from Stanford University and is a CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) Charterholder. He is a Canadian Top 30 Under 30, Laureate Global Fellow, G20 YEA Canadian Delegate, UN Global Accelerator and he holds a US patent. He has language skills in Swahili, French, Spanish, and German. His work has been featured in Forbes Africa, CNN, The Globe and Mail, and the CBC.
Sofiya Kominko holds an Honours BA from the University of Ottawa, graduating summa cum laude in Communications and Political Science. Growing up, Sofiya has lived in the United States, Ukraine, France, and both coasts of Canada, making her see firsthand the value international education and cross-cultural communication has, particularly for youth.
While a student, Sofiya pursued her interests in youth engagement and community building by helping develop and deliver programming to newcomer and refugee youth at one of the largest settlement agencies in North Vancouver. An advocate for inclusivity, pluralism, and local capacity building, in 2015, Sofiya brought her experiences in youth work to her native country of Ukraine as a recipient of the J. Armand Bombardier Community Service Learning Award. While in Ukraine, she put her own programming skills to the test by developing and facilitating workshops in leadership, goal-setting, and interpersonal communication with local students.
Internationally, Sofiya participated in a Canadian student delegation to the United Nations Student Conference on Human Rights and Development where she brainstormed ways that Canadian cities could combat homelessness and better social services for refugees. Following her grass-roots passions and professional experience in settlement work, Sofiya is now approaching the world of immigration from a public policy angle in her role as a Project Officer at Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.
Aside from her job, Sofiya sits on the executive of the Ukrainian National Federation (Ottawa-Gatineau) and acts as a communications advisor for several organizations in the Ukrainian-Canadian community.
Theresa has a multidisciplinary background in law, politics, and communications. She possesses a B.A. in Political Science (University of Western Ontario), a Juris Doctor (University of Calgary), and a Certificate in Public International Law (Hague Academy). During her academic time, she was actively involved in student council endeavours, focusing on financial-aid advocacy projects as well as several provincial political campaigns. Since then, Theresa has spent nearly four years working as a lawyer in Calgary, focusing on issues of municipal law and general civil litigation, before relocating briefly to The Hague, NL to perform work in international law and human rights consulting. She has been active in developing international criminal legislation, human rights policies, and advocacy strategies for sustainable development.
In her spare time, Theresa has been an active member of Global Shapers (both in the Calgary and Amsterdam hubs), where she has aided in community projects, worked as an External Relations Director, and attended global WEF conferences as a delegate from Canada. She has also performed communications work for the Kamala Foundation, which promotes sustainable development in Nepal. Now, Theresa is combining her experiences into acting as an effective advocate for international clients, as a consultant in crisis management and public relations.
Having frequently relied on the work of the OECD, and having participated at length in municipal, provincial, and national policy discussions around the world, Theresa is looking forward to taking an active role at the OECD Forum and working to increase global communities.
Yanish Bhoolaton is a graduating Public Administration and Political Science undergrad at York University and the former Expanding Community Program Editor at the NATO Council of Canada. Currently employed as a Research Assistant at the Regional Municipality of York, his background includes public administration and policy analysis, more specifically analyzing and researching accessibility and immigration issues. He has successfully built indicators to measure and monitor organizational change and researched the laws and regulations governing accessibility and diversity policies of different cities, municipalities and organizations within Ontario. Furthemore, Yanish worked as a conversational English teacher in Barcelona, Spain and participated in the International Student Festival in Trondheim, Norway. Yanish aspires to continue his education in international relations and business, with hopes to work within the Federal Canadian government. His interests include economic development, globalization, human rights, public policy and Canadian politics. In addition to school and work, Yanish enjoys travelling, skiing and tennis.
Ross Linden-Fraser is a writer and political analyst, currently living in Edinburgh, Scotland. He joins the delegation as a long-time student of international politics, having worked variously in political analysis, project coordination, and communication.
Currently holding a Junior Research Fellowship at the NATO Association of Canada, Ross writes weekly on Canadian foreign policy, touching on trade, defence strategy, civic engagement, and other issues. His work has been republished on various platforms, including OpenCanada. He also reports on British politics as a parliamentary reporter for DeHavilland UK.
Having worked with diverse interest groups, nationalities, and professions through experience in the engineering and maritime shipping industries, Ross has a particular interest in interdisciplinary communication and widening participation in political decision-making. In his masters dissertation, he examined the prospect of synthesizing Western and Chinese approaches to foreign policy analysis, and has studied means of strengthening political dialogue by democratizing international institutions.
Ross recently obtained an MSc International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science, which he attended as a Mackenzie King Travelling Scholar and a resident Canadian Scholar at Goodenough College. He completed his undergraduate degree in International Relations at Western University.
Sara Elhawash, YDC Executive Representative, Recruitment Coordinator
Sara holds a BA with Honours in Political Science from York University. She was very involved in University holding many volunteer positions and helping many students as a REDZone Student Ambassador for York University.
Of the many roles she held, Sara's leadership as President of UNICEF at York resulted in the Club being awarded York’s Club of the Year Award for all events, organized, advocating initiatives for children around the world, increasing membership to over a thousand, and donating over $2,000 to UNICEF Canada. Sara had worked on several projects including planning a successful Ottawa trip as the Managing Director of Political Science Council where she led and organized a meeting with 3 Counselors from the Embassy of the United States, a meeting with diplomats at Global Affairs Canada, Parliament tour, Rideau Hall tour, and meetings with MPs, and ministers at the Assembly of First Nations. Sara had participated in Model UN conferences, acted as the Minister of Education in Model Parliament, and was selected as a Delegate to represent Canada at Carleton Model NATO 2016.
Sara's political ambition and involvement led her to many awards one of which selected her to represent her own Political Science program and Liberal Arts faculty for York’s "this is my time" campaign with her vision of "2022: As a diplomat, I advance Canada’s international influence". She is currently working for the Ministry of Community and Social Services as an Enforcement Services Representative helping many divorced families in Ontario. Aside from her job, Sara is currently involved with the Toronto Youth Cabinet at Toronto City Hall and serves as the Director of Governmental and International Affairs at the Canadian Middle Eastern Council.