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Understanding I IDEA (Intersectionality, Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Anti-Black Racism)



The Event is on Thursday August 19th, 2020 from 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm.


We have observed the global protests, including here in Canada, demanding the Black Live Matter (BLM) acknowledgement. Many believe that we are experiencing a pandemic (racism) within a pandemic (COVID-19). Based on this upheaval, numerous organizations, including PMI Globally, are noticing, encouraging uncomfortable conversations related to equity, and acting. Locally, at the Chapter, we take our making strides by having a conversation with panellists experienced with intersectionality, inclusion, diversity, equity and Anti-Black racism (IIDEA).

Please join us for the conversation. Send questions for our panellists HERE


Speaker Bios


Meryl Afrika


Meryl is the current President of CAUFP, a non-profit organization that provides a link between corporations and the Black community, through innovative programing that increases Black talent pipelines, provides educational opportunities, and fosters economic growth.

Meryl’s career within Canada’s Financial Services industry started when she emigrated from South Africa and began working at Mogo Finance Technology Inc., an emerging Fintech company located in Western Canada. After 3 years within the start-up space, Meryl embarked on a sales career in Commercial Banking at CIBC where she managed the sales portfolio for Northern Alberta and the North West Territories. Meryl transitioned from Sales to Product Management, where she leveraged her client experience to manage payment and liquidity products for clients within the Small Business, Mid-Market and Large Corporate segments. Additionally, Meryl managed corporate partner relationships with multi-national organizations, such as US Bank and Global Payments while launching CIBC’s first suite of credit cards for Commercial Banking clients.

After 3 years within Product Management, Meryl transitioned back to a sales role at Scotiabank as a Senior Manager, Payments & Cash Management. Meryl currently works as a Payments Expert, Marketing & Innovation at Peoples Group, where she is responsible for representing the organization’s interests in the industry wide Payments Modernization program lead by Payments Canada. Meryl holds a Bachelor of Information Technology with a specialization in Business Systems from Monash University.


Margarita de Guzman


Margarita de Guzman is an Associate Vice President who leads the Fraud, Payments, and Projects global portfolios within TD Bank's Audit Division. She started her career at Deloitte, where she earned her Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CA) and Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) designations. Margarita is passionate about strategy setting, innovation, and talent management. Within TD, she is an active member of the TD Finance Indigenous Peoples committee and participates in various mentorship programs. She has also participated in Inclusion and Diversity panel discussions for International Women’s Day, the TD Finance Mentorship Program, and Filipino Heritage Month.

Margarita is also Vice President, Volunteer Engagement at Ascend Canada, a 100% volunteer-run organization that aims to enhance the presence, visibility, and influence of current and future Pan-Asian business leaders by providing programs and events that inspire and educate.

Margarita obtained her graduate and undergraduate degrees from the University of Waterloo.

Jeffrey Thompson, DBA, PMP


Jeffrey Thompson is the newly elected President of the PMI Toronto Chapter. Formally serving as Director, Technology and Analytics, Jeffrey has been a volunteer with PMI Toronto since 2000.

Jeffrey is an accomplished and dynamic Certified Project Manager, Six Sigma Green Belt, MS Project Trainer, Agile, and ITIL professional. He has over 30 years of experience and proven effectiveness with successful implementations in the financial, pharmaceutical, brewing, Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) industries, and government (Ontario Lottery and Gaming). He currently works at TD Bank as an Agile Scrum Master in Infrastructure Technology Solutions (ITS).

He also gives back to the community as a volunteer in his church and as a board member with the York Region Alliance of African Canadian Communities (YRAACC).

Jeffrey holds a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) in General Business from Northcentral University (NCU), Arizona.


Aman Dhesi


Aman is a trained career counsellor with over ten years of combined experience working in the not-for-profit, corporate and higher education sectors. He has worked in various government-funded programs advocating for newcomers and refugees to Canada, as a corporate diversity recruitment professionals to increase representation of black professionals in Canadian corporate culture and in his current role provides career support to business school students at the Ted Rogers School of Management.

A proud member of Toronto's LGBTQ2A+ community, Aman volunteers and raises awareness for organizations such as the 519 that provides programming for Toronto's thriving community. 

Outside of his professional and volunteer endeavours, Aman is an active recording artist in the queer pop music scene.



​PDU: 1.5 Leadership



6:30 - 6:40: Introductions

6:40 - 7:40: Panelist Discussion

7:40 - 8:00: Q&A from Audience

Cancellation and Refund Policy

Cancellations must be received by 5:00 p.m., 5 business days before the event and must be sent in writing by email to your chapter registrar. There will be a 20% administration fee charged for cancellations, subtracted from the refund. Please contact info@pmitoronto.ca to cancel your registration.  Cancellation/refund requests will not be accepted less than 5 business days before the event. However, substitutions are welcome.

It is no longer possible to register for this event

It is no longer possible to register for this event


Type of activity: PMI Toronto Monthly Meeting

Date: August 19th, 2020

Hour: 6:30PM to 8:00PM

# of PDUs: 1.5


Members: Free

Non members and Guests: $10.00