Six named among Canadian young achievers

Six Western alumni have been named to Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 for 2018, awards officials announced Thursday.

Founded in 1995 by Caldwell Partners, Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 is an awards program that identifies “young achievers in Canadian business, visionaries and innovators changing the way things are done.”

Among the Western honourees:

Moez Kassam
BA’04 (Political Science)
Principal, Anson Funds

With more than a decade of experience as a successful entrepreneur, hedge fund manager, business partner, philanthropist, and board member, Kassam brings a wealth of experience and creative energy to all he does. As co-founder of Anson Funds, he manages a $750 million ranked by Bloomberg Magazine as Top 10 global performer and was named a top manager ‘bucking the trend’ by Barron’s for successful performance over five years. Alongside this demanding role, he applies his innate business acumen to the benefit of numerous charities through his public foundation including Doctors Without Borders, Kids Cook to Care and Ryerson University’s Lifeline Syria. He’s a member of the Young President’s Organization (YPO), and moonlights as an executive producer for production house Moringa Media, where he provides the critical link between business and art. In addition to his Western degree, Kassam also has an MBA from London Business School. He is proud to call Toronto home.

Rebecca McKillican
BESc/HBA’03
Chief Executive Officer, Well.ca

McKillican is the CEO of Well.ca and has been with the company since 2013. Before becoming part of the Well.ca team, she worked for the New York City-based private equity firm Kohlberg, Kravis & Roberts (KKR) within the retail and consumer group. While at KKR, McKillican spent the majority of her time driving operational improvements across the firm’s portfolio companies. She has also worked at McKinsey & Company. In addition to her Western degrees, McKillican also holds an MBA from Harvard Business School where she was a Baker Scholar. She is also a board member of the National Bank of Canada and sits on the Human Resources Committee.

Dr. Vipan Nikore
BSc’01 (Computer Science)
Medical Director, Dept. of Medicine, Credit Valley Hospital, Trillium Health Partners; Physician, Cleveland Clinic; Chief Medical Director, TD Bank

Nikore is the Chief Medical Director of TD Bank and Site Medical Director for the Department of Medicine at Trillium Health Partners Credit Valley Hospital. He is a practicing internal medicine physician at Trillium and Cleveland Clinic’s Toronto and Cleveland sites, a lecturer at the University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine and was a visiting research scientist at MIT where he was co-course director for their Global Health Informatics course and co-edited one of the first comprehensive Global Health Technology books.

Nikore is the founder of Homecare Hub, and as a medical student founded the non-profit Urban Future Leaders of the World (uFLOW), which empowers marginalized youth to start their own service projects. He expanded uFLOW to Chicago, Cleveland, New York City, Boston, and San Francisco and is building a Toronto headquarters with a new public health focused brand. He is an advisor at the Health Education Project in Haiti and part of the Toronto Foundation’s Inaugural Vision 20/20 Philanthropy Program.

Nikore is a former IBM software developer, and has led projects at the WHO in Switzerland, Ontario Ministry of Health, UNICEF in India, Sun Microsystems, Citibank, UCLA, and Lux Capital.

In addition to his Western degrees, Nikore completed his internal medicine residency at Cleveland Clinic, MD at the University of Illinois-Chicago and MBA at Yale. At Yale he was President of the Graduate & Professional Student body.

Dr. Andrea Sereda
BSc’03, MD’07
Physician, London Intercommunity Health Centre

Sereda is a family physician who practices street outreach medicine, caring for homeless women who are involved in the survival sex trade. She provides care through the London Intercommunity Health Centre in London, Ont. She provides health care within the program Street Level Women at Risk (SLWAR), a housing-first model of care that strives to rapidly house women while concurrently addressing a woman’s physical health, mental health and substance use problems. Unique within Canada, SLWAR brings together a team of women supporting women, comprised of Sereda, Sgt. Amy Birtch of the London Police Service and a hard-working group of women acting as street outreach workers and case managers. SLWAR is seeing profound successes in their work of housing and caring for chronically homeless women.

Jason Thacker
HBA’02
Senior Vice President, Head of Consumer Deposits & Payments, TD Bank Group

Thacker is the Senior Vice-President & Head of U.S. Consumer Deposits & Payments at TD Bank Group. At TD, he has held a variety of executive roles in North America, working across multiple businesses within the consumer, commercial and corporate/specialty divisions.

Thacker started his career in brand management at Procter & Gamble where he became the company’s youngest global expatriate, leading various brands in both the United States and Canada. In addition to his Western degree, he holds an MBA from The Wharton School.

Thacker has been honoured as a global 40 under 40 by both the Wharton School and Procter & Gamble. He remains active in the community, serving on various Boards in both Canada and United States

Blaine Woodcock
MBA’07
Chief of Staff and Chair, Deloitte Foundation, Deloitte

Woodcock is Chief of Staff at Deloitte and serves as the Chair of the Deloitte Foundation. He is a Partner from Monitor Deloitte where he has advised Senior Executives and Boards of both Canadian and international clients in both the public and private sectors. Woodcock was a co-creator of the Future of Canada Centre, an initiative dedicated to analyzing and advancing causes of significant importance to the country, including the issue of Canadian productivity. During this time, he co-authored publications, which have received extensive media coverage by a number of publications including the Wall Street Journal, Globe and Mail and National Post. Previously, Woodcock served as an advisor to three senior cabinet ministers in the Government of Canada. In addition to his Western degree, Woodcock holds a Baccalaureate of Social Sciences with a concentration in Political Science from the University of Ottawa.