Silicon Valley & the Bay Area has long been the global epicentre for innovation and the disruptive forces reshaping our world in ways we are just beginning to understand. Its firms, funders, trendsetters and talent have outsized impacts on Canada. Join Rana Sarkar, Canada's Consul General to San Francisco & Silicon Valley on January 29th, as he discusses what's next for 2019, potential surprises and lessons learned and most critically, how Canadians should get ready to navigate what's ahead.
Sarkar will also be drawing on insights from a report on Canada by the Bay Area Council Economic Institute and from his experience as our chief diplomat shaping Canada's economic, political and cultural ties with Northern California/Silicon Valley at this unique moment.
Rana will be joined in conversation by Alison Loat (Managing Director, Focusing Capital on the Long Term).
Counsel General of Canada in San Francisco
Sarkar was appointed to his role as Consul General to San Francisco Silicon Valley in August 2017 when he was also named a member of Canada's NAFTA Advisory Council. Prior to his appointment, Sarkar was National Director for High Growth Markets at KPMG and Co-chair & Senior Fellow at The Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto. From 2009 - 2013 he was President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canada -India Business Council.
Before returning to Canada in 2008, Sarkar was a UK based entrepreneur who co-founded and sold a global content agency in 2009. Sarkar began his career as a consultant at Roland Berger Strategy Consultants in London and Munich and helped establish Roland Berger in India.
Sarkar attended the London School of Economics, Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario, and the INSEAD Executive Program in France.
Mr. Sarkar is married to best selling author and founder Reva Seth, they have three children.
Managing Director, FCLT Global
Alison Loat entrepreneurial, globally oriented executive with twenty years’ experience building, growing and managing high-impact, purpose-driven businesses and organizations.
She is currently the managing director of FCLTGlobal, a U.S. 501(c)3 founded by the CEOs of BlackRock, The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Dow, McKinsey & Company and Tata and supported by 45 other asset owners, managers and corporations, to develop practical approaches to encourage long-term behaviors in business and investment decision-making.
She is also the board chair of Ai-Media Canada and a director of the global board of Ai-Media, a technology company that makes educational, workplace, conference and media content accessible to everyone.
Alison’s career began at McKinsey & Company, where she focused on healthcare and financial services. She was the chief marketing officer for a venture-backed healthcare technology company, established a retirement income plan for Canada’s charitable sector workers, and worked on the founding team of the Medical and Related Sciences (MaRS) Discovery District, a 1.5 million square foot scientific commercialization facility in Toronto.
She is also a passionate Canadian dedicated to public service. She co-founded Samara Canada, a charity that works to build better politics. She is also a Senior Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, taught for six years at the University of Toronto, was a member of the Premier of Ontario’s Highly Skilled Workforce Expert Panel, served as the president of the Canadian Club of Toronto, vice-president of the Banff Forum board, and as a director of the Toronto Community Foundation. She is also the co-author of the #1 best-selling book Tragedy in the Commons: Former MPs Speak Out About Canada's Failing Democracy.
Alison is currently a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, where she serves on the program’s Advisory Board, a fellow at the Public Policy Forum and a governor of Ridley College. She is also a modest investor in Canada’s newest journalism start-up, The Logic, and has advised several organizations on democracy and the future of journalism.
She received both the Queen’s Gold and Diamond Jubilee Medals and was named one of the WXN 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada. She has degrees from Queen’s University and the Harvard Kennedy School.