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UM Properties GP Inc. Chair & Board of Directors

A board of directors, chaired by Robert (Bob) Silver, has been appointed by the Board of Governors to UM Properties GP Inc., which will lead the development of the Southwood Lands, the former golf course adjacent to the Fort Garry campus, into a vibrant, mixed-use, pedestrian friendly, transit-centred neighbourhood.

Silver, a Distinguished Alumni Award recipient of the University of Manitoba, is president and co-owner of Western Glove Works, a Winnipeg based manufacturer of casual apparel; co-owner of clothing chain Warehouse One; and co-owner of the Winnipeg Free Press and the Brandon Sun newspapers. As the former chair of the University of Manitoba’s Smartpark, he played an integral role in developing this successful innovation and technology park.

Biographical Information of Directors

Mr. Robert (Bob) Silver, Chair
An alumnus of the University of Manitoba, Mr. Silver is an accomplished business and community leader. As president and co-owner of Western Glove Works Ltd, he has helped grow the company’s revenues to upwards of $190-million. Mr. Silver is co-owner of the Warehouse One and Urban Barn retail chains. He is also co-owner of the Winnipeg Free Press, the Brandon Sun, CanStar Weeklies and Derksen Printers. Mr. Silver has served on many boards, including CentrePort Canada, the Business Council of Manitoba and the First Peoples Economic Growth Fund. He spearheaded the redevelopment of the Millenium Library, he led the Grow Winnipeg initiative of the Jewish Federation and served as chair of Destination Winnipeg and the United Way of Winnipeg. He has also served as Chancellor of the University of Winnipeg.

Mr. Rick Adams
An alumnus of the University of Manitoba in Arts and Law, Mr. Adams is a lawyer and Partner with Thompson Dorfman Sweatman LLP. Mr. Adams confines his practice to real estate law, with particular emphasis on and expertise in commercial sale, purchase, financing and lease transactions, and real estate development projects. He is frequently called upon to provide expert evidence opinions in real estate litigation matters. In the course of his career he has worked on major development files, including the development of the Forks.

Mr. Bob Ellard
An alumnus of the University of Manitoba in Architecture, Mr. Ellard is a 40-year veteran of the design and architecture industry with experience in both the corporate and post-secondary educational sectors. As Vice-President, Facilities Management and Development at the University of Calgary from 2008 to 2013, Mr. Ellard led the West Campus Development Trust, including recruiting the initial Board of the Trust and hiring the first CEO of the Trust. Prior to joining the University of Calgary, Mr. Ellard was Vice-President, architecture and interior design (facilities planning and operations) at Stantec. A member of the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, Mr. Ellard has a long track record of professional and community service.

Ms. Diane Gray
An alumna of the University of Manitoba in political studies and public administration, Ms. Gray is a recognized leader with extensive experience in business and real estate development, trade, intergovernmental relations and finance. As the founding President & CEO of CentrePort Canada Inc., she is responsible for working with all levels of government and the private sector to develop a 20,000 acre trimodal inland port in Winnipeg. Ms. Gray has an extensive background in governance with organizations including Mitacs, World Trade Centre Winnipeg, the Canada West Foundation, the Public Policy Forum of Canada and the Associates of the Asper School of Business.

Dr. David Barnard
Dr. Barnard has served as President of the University of Manitoba since July, 2008. His career has includes serving as president of the University of Regina (1998-2005) and in other senior leadership roles at the University of Regina and Queen’s University. From 2005-2008 he was chief operating officer of iQmetrix, an IT company that provides information and technology solutions for the retail and health sectors. He has extensive Board experience and currently serves on the Boards of Universities Canada, the Royal Society of Canada, CentrePort Canada, Greystone Managed Investments and Payments Canada.

Ms. Lynn Zapshala-Kelln
Ms. Zapshala-Kelln has served as Vice-President (Administration) of the University of Manitoba since June, 2017. A Chartered Professional Accountant, Ms. Zapshala-Kelln has an extensive background in public sector leadership, having served in the senior ranks of the Province of Manitoba civil service for almost two decades, most recently as Secretary to the Treasury Board. She also served as Assistant Deputy Minister with the Treasury Board Secretariat, Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation, and Manitoba Conservation and Water Stewardship.

Mr. Steve Demmings
Mr. Demmings is an alumnus of the University of Manitoba in City Planning. His background is in real estate, economic development and implementation of community business attraction strategies. He has managed a diverse, mixed-use national real estate portfolio consisting of office, retail and industrial buildings. His experience includes the creation of investment and job creation strategies in the technology sector with the Province of Manitoba and Site Selection Canada. As the founding CEO of the Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission he developed strategic plans to transition the economy and implement job creation strategies in Thunder Bay and North-Western Ontario in a variety of sectors. He has served the community in a number of ways including the on the City of Winnipeg Board of Adjustment, Heritage Winnipeg, the Fort Whyte Foundation, the Downtown BIZ and the Ontario North Economic Development Corporation.

UM Properties Holdings Inc.


Mr. Jeff Leclerc
Mr. Leclerc is the University Secretary at the University of Manitoba, a role he has held since 2003.  As University Secretary, Mr. Leclerc is the senior governance officer of the University, providing advice and guidance on jurisdiction, strategy, policy and process and ensuring the effective operation of the University’s bicameral governance system. Mr. Leclerc holds a Master’s degree in Educational Administration from the University of Manitoba, completed the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University and holds the Chartered Director designation.  Active in his community, he also currently serves on the Board of the Canadian University Boards Association, a member of the Pension Committee for the University of Manitoba Pension Plans and as Trustee of the United Way of Winnipeg.

Dr. Terry Sargeant
An alumnus of the University of Manitoba in Arts and Law and the recipient of an honorary degree, Mr. Sargeant served as a member and chair of the Board of Governors of the University of Manitoba. Mr. Sargeant retired in 2016 as Chair of the Manitoba Clean Environment Commission having served in various roles in the public service in Manitoba, British Columbia and Yukon. He was also twice elected to the House of Commons. He has served on many boards, including as President of the Winnipeg Folk Festival, Prairie Theatre Exchange, the Manitoba Theater Centre, and the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, which he currently chairs.