The Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Transport, today announced the appointments of Ms. Melissa Sonberg of Montreal, and Ms. Deborah Robinson, of Toronto, to the board of directors of VIA Rail Canada, each for a three-year term.
BEng, Chemical Engineering, McGill University
PhD, Chemical Engineering, Cambridge University, UK
Bronfman Building, [Map]
1001 rue Sherbrooke Ouest
Dr. Avedesian joined McGill's Faculty of Management in September 2003 as an Executive-in-Residence and Adjunct Professor after a long career in industry. He teaches courses in strategic management in the Faculty of Management and technological entrepreneurship in the Faculty of Engineering. Currently, he is also Business Development Group Manager, in the Office of Technology Transfer at McGill.
In addition to his McGill activities, he currently serves on the Board of Directors of several companies including HQ CapiTech, HQ IndusTech, Avestor Inc. and TM4 Inc. He most recently retired from the Boards of Ningxia Huayuan Metallurgical Industry Corp. based in Yinchuan China, Lab 7 Networks Inc. located in Ottawa and the International Magnesium Association in Washington D.C. He was also Chairman of the Board of Lab 7 Networks Inc., an early stage security software company with proprietary new technology. Previously, he was the CEO of Liponex Inc., a bio-pharmaceutical therapeutic drug research company originating at the Ottawa Heart Institute. Prior to that, Dr. Avedesian was President of Noranda Magnesium Inc., which culminated a 21-year career with Noranda in various operations and business management functions. He also had a seven-year career at Domtar Inc. where he worked as Manager of Business Development and Director of Corporate Research. He left Domtar to start up ITM Inc., a highly specialized engineering design and prototype foundry for magnesium component parts for the automotive industry worldwide. He was the first President COO, later to become Chairman of the Board before its eventual sale.
During his 31-year career in operations, business management and entrepreneurial start-ups, Dr. Avedesian published over 15 papers, received 4 patents, edited two Proceedings of conferences and recently edited a reference book titled Magnesium and Magnesium Alloys published by the ASM International. He is a member of many professional associations including the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec and Professional Engineers Ontario. He was elected a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of the Chemical Institute of Canada. Dr. Avedesian has received many distinctive awards including the Athlone Fellowship to study at Cambridge University, the Airey Award and the Canada Council Lecturer Award of the ASM.