RIC Centre is excited to welcome Shirley Speakman as the new Chair of the RIC Board of Directors. Speakman has been a board member since 2015, and now takes over the reins from Sunil Selby, Managing Partner at Trellis Capital.

Speakman is currently a Senior Partner with Cycle Capital. She was previously the Director of Investments for the MaRS Investment Accelerator Fund (IAF). IAF is a $40M+ venture capital fund established by the Ontario government to invest in seed and early stage technology-oriented companies based in the province.

Prior to joining the IAF, Speakman spent over 12 years acting as advising biotech, ag-biotech and advanced manufacturing and materials companies in areas such as strategy, finance, negotiations and fund raising. She spearheaded numerous financings and M&A transactions and participated in the creation of a $40M cross border life sciences fund and the close of a Canadian based $40M ag-biotech fund.

On her new role, Speakman said,

“The new board members strategically reflect RIC Centre’s priorities to support entrepreneurs and connect with industry in critical areas of IoT, cybersecurity, and investment.  I’m excited about the new members and the value they with bring to RIC Centre programs.  With the support of our new board members, RIC Centre is finalizing a new program to be launched in January that provides hands on how to launch a smart product”.

We are happy to have Speakman’s continued support in her new role as Chair.

RIC Centre also welcomes the following new members to the Board of Directors.

Trevor Bingham is an innovative and enthusiastic sales manager in the high-tech sector with extensive experience working with early-stage companies through fortune 100 global organizations.

He leads a talented team of Field Sales, Application Engineers, and Inside Sales professionals for Arrow Electronics. He is well versed in creative supply chain solutions and has a working knowledge of regional, and global outsourcing.

Bingham has twenty-two years of technical sales and marketing experience within the distribution, electronics components, and consumer electronics industries.

Michael Castro is an accomplished IT leader with 20+ years’ experience building and leading Information Security, Cyber Risk, and Compliance at the enterprise level. He has successfully led all aspects of Information Security Programs including, policies and procedures, oversight and controls, strategy, architecture development, and training. Castro has a unique blend of technical knowledge, business acumen, and decisive leadership to improve performance, protect data, and secure networking systems.

Michelle Chretien is passionate about the commercialization of innovation. She has over 10 years’ experience leading multi-disciplinary, globally dispersed teams in a fast-paced technology environment. She has also published 20+ scientific research papers and been issued >75 US Patents.

Chretien has substantial experience with Canadian funding programs for academia, entrepreneurs, and small/medium-size enterprises.

Raymond Kingdon is an economically aware MBA/CPA graduate with 30+ years’ experience in Financial Management, Operations, and Systems. He is a hands-on implementer of finance, system, and process solutions on five continents.

Kingdon is a trusted coach and board advisory to pre- and post-revenue startups. His roles vary but includes interim Cx, advisory board member, and access to the ecosystem network.  Kingdon assists in developing KPI’s given there are no historical financial data to rely nor pitches or projections (runway, monthly revenue return, churn, customer acquisition value, life time value).

Andrew Opala participates on various NFP boards in Peel like Earthshine Astronomy and Catholic Family Services.  He is also avid about building our suburb into a city and participates in various community planning events around the future of Mississauga.

Opala has been the business, operations or technical lead in several successful startups such as Addictive Mobility, Instaradio, TenfourLabs, Voxavox, Iseemedia and MGI Software.  He currently is the CTO of a marketing startup Simmons Sharpe Inc. Opala also finds time for angel investing and participates in the Mississauga Investor Network.

Opala brings knowledge of the startup product/financing lifecycles and hopes to contribute to exposing RIC Centre offerings to more startups, and follow-on investors.

Angelo Rizzo has over 20 years’ experience in the electric utility and industrial automation industry. He has been instrumental in developing and supplying leading edge technology solutions for electric utility customers in the areas of protection relays, communications systems, video and SCADA systems.

Rizzo is currently the President & CEO at SWI, and in the past has held senior commercial and technical positions at RuggedCom, and General Electric (Multilin). He is currently an active member of both the IEEE and IEC, where he participates in a number of technical standards committees.


The new Directors bring valuable expertise to grow RIC Centre programs to support tech-based companies.

Meet the rest of our team.

RIC Centre team consists of more than 100 highly qualified business professionals focused on providing RIC companies with the fastest path to success.

This is RIC Centre