Executive Director, Centre for Social Innovation
Raised by hippies, Tonya Surman has been making peace signs and raising a ruckus since the day she was born. Her most recent ruckus is the Centre for Social Innovation. As founding executive director, Tonya imagines the Centre as space that sparks creativity, connectedness and fun. Before this, she channeled her overzealous optimism into a national coalition of organizations working on children’s environmental health, a social enterprise offering e-mail to activists and an edgy online news hub for Canadian progressives. Between these experiments in social entrepreneurship, Tonya has found the time to create a coop daycare, host chaotic street parties and create community gardens. She is also the mother of two wonderful boys which, in the end, is what matters most.