Board of Directors
Your Quick Gateway (Windsor) Inc. is governed by an experienced and skilled 10-member board of directors who serve a term of four years and are eligible for reappointment without term limits by the Council of the City of Windsor.
Drew Dilkens was elected Mayor of the City of Windsor on October 27, 2014. Mayor Dilkens ran on a platform of continued fiscal discipline and pushed for a more regional approach to government in Windsor and Essex County.
Prior to being elected Mayor, and during his eight years as a member of Windsor City Council, he chaired the International Relations Committee, the Essex Windsor Solid Waste Authority, and spearheaded the creation and implementation of the new Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island. He also served as the Vice Chair of the Windsor International Airport Board of Directors, the Planning and Economic Development Committee and EnWin Energy. Mayor Dilkens led the Steering Committee overseeing the construction of Windsor’s $78 million state-of-the-art aquatics facility – the Windsor International Aquatic and Training Centre and premier family attraction – Adventure Bay.
Mayor Dilkens has an extensive history of community involvement in Windsor. He spent 15 years with the Windsor Police Auxiliary where he was a Staff Sergeant. He was a founding Board Member for the Canadian Manufacturing Hall of Fame. He is also an annual Area Captain in the Windsor Goodfellows Paper Drive. He has served as President to both the Windsor and Essex County Crime Stoppers and Windsor Road Watch programs. Mayor Dilkens is also a past Executive Board Member of Windsor Regional Hospital, a Past Vice-President of the Windsor Jaycees and former Chair of the Windsor Red Cross Emergency Services Unit. He sat on the provincial board of the Human Resource Professional Association (HRPA) – the Ontario regulating body for the HR professionals serving 18,000 members. He currently serves as a member of the Appeals Panel and Government Relations Committee for HRPA.
The Mayor brings a wealth of economic development, international trade, human resource and labour relations experience to the office. He served as an International Trade Officer at the Canadian Consulate in Detroit, a labour relations consultant at a large consulting firm in Detroit, and most recently practiced in the areas of labour and employment law at McTague Law Firm in Windsor.
Mayor Drew Dilkens is a lifelong resident of the City of Windsor. He has a Bachelor of Commerce and a law degree from the University of Windsor, called to the bar in 2012. He also has a Master of Business Administration from Wayne State University and received his Doctorate of Business Administration from the International School of Management in Paris, France with a focus on municipal amalgamation in Ontario. He also holds the professional designation of a Certified Human Resources Professional (CHRP), along with training certificates from the Canadian Foreign Service Institute, Canadian Securities Institute and Federal Bureau of Investigations in the United States.
Mayor Dilkens is married to Jane Deneau and has two young children
Fred Francis was born on November 22, 1980 in Windsor, Ontario. He was raised in South Windsor and is the youngest of three sons to Farid and Arlette Francis, who immigrated to Windsor from Lebanon in the early 1970s.
Fred attended Notre Dame Catholic Elementary School and Holy Names Catholic High School prior to studying at Western University in London, Ontario. In London, Fred earned a Bachelor of Arts degree (combined hons History/Political Science) in 2003. After Western, Fred studied at the University of Windsor, earning both a Master of Arts degree (History) in 2006 and a Bachelor of Education degree in 2009.
Professionally, Fred has worked in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors prior to being elected to Windsor City Council in October 2014. He has significant management experience, having been the Director of Business Development for the region’s largest automotive retailer group and currently serving as the Director of Programs and Development for the Multicultural Council of Windsor and Essex County.
Fred resides within Ward 1 in the City of Windsor and is a first-term City Councillor. He was elected on a platform that places taxpayers first, while working to build stronger neighborhoods. As a Councillor, Fred has been a strong proponent of fiscal responsibility at City Hall. He has also focused on greater job creation in our city and region; holding the line on property taxes; continuing to decrease the City’s debt, increasing its financial reserves; and investing in our roads, sewers and park infrastructure. Fred believes in a strong and vibrant City of Windsor with a quality of life that is second to none.
Councillor Francis currently serves on the following Agencies, Boards and Committees:
- Environment, Transportation & Public Safety Standing Committee
- International Relations Committee (Chair)
- Museum Development Project Steering Committee
- Town & Gown Committee
- Windsor Essex County Environment Committee
- Essex Region Conservation Authority
- Essex Windsor Solid Waste Authority
- Roseland Golf Club Board of Directors (Chair)
- Windsor Canada Utilities
- Huron Lodge Committee of Management
- Your Quick Gateway (YQG) Board of Directors
- (IBLS) Institute of Border Logistics and Security Committee
Councillor Jo-Anne Gignac is a lifelong resident of the Riverside area. Jo-Anne was first elected to City Council in 2003 representing Ward 5. A few of Jo-Anne’s extensive committee appointments include Licensing Commission, Rail Issues, Essex Windsor Solid Waste Authority, Essex Region Conservation Authority, Lou Romano, Planning Advisory Committee, WFCU, Windsor Canada Utilities, Environmental Master Plan, Service Delivery Review and many more. Her work on the Operating and Capital Budget Committees has been very productive in addressing the financial challenges the City has and will continue to wrestle with.
Additionally Jo-Anne has represented the community at the School Board level; she was elected in 1988 as a Trustee and subsequently served as Vice-Chairperson and Chairperson of the School Board until 2000 when she decided not to seek re-election. Jo-Anne has also been involved with a number of Community organizations including the Children’s Achievement Centre, Windsor Catholic Family Services, Habitat for Humanity, Maycourt and Committee of Adjustment.
Councillor Gignac says her continuing priorities are to attract diversified investment in Windsor to create jobs; continuing our fiscal focus on reducing costs and taxes; promoting safe and clean neighbourhoods, and investing in improved sewers and roads.
Jo-Anne says she is committed to working tirelessly with residents and business, making the tough decisions to achieve an attractive, vibrant community at the forefront of social and economic innovation.
Kevin Laforet has been a member of the executive team at Casino Windsor since the company was formed in 1994. He held a number of positions and was named President & CEO in June, 2003. He has been in the unique position of opening four casino properties – the interim Casino Windsor facility in 1994, the Northern Belle Riverboat Casino in 1995, the permanent facility in 1998 and the expansion and rebranding to Caesars Windsor in 2008.
He is currently a member of the Board of Directors for the Canadian Gaming Association, The Windsor/Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce and AutoGlow Honorary Committee. He has served as a member of the Board of Governors for the University of Windsor, a member of Windsor’s MRI Fund Raising Campaign, the Board of Directors for the United Way of Windsor-Essex County and the Windsor branch of the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Ontario.
Before entering the gaming industry, his prior employment experience included positions with the Canadian and U.S. operations of Hiram Walker & Sons Limited, Union Gas Limited and Ernst & Young. He is a graduate of the University of Windsor (Bachelor of Commerce) and holds a Chartered Accountant’s designation. Kevin received the `Gaming Professional of the Year’ Award from the Casino Management Association in 2004 and the `Industry Leadership and Outstanding Contribution Award’ from the Canadian Gaming Association in 2007.
Information coming soon.
Renato Discenza is the President and CEO of Invest Toronto, Toronto’s foreign direct investment marketing and sales corporation.
Invest Toronto is rooted in one of the fastest-growing metropolises in North America. Invest Toronto’s mission is to promote Toronto as a prime destination for businesses to invest and grow. This goal is realized by securing corporate expansions and relocations and driving the marketing and positioning of Toronto in global corporate investment markets. In his role as President and CEO, Renato Discenza will strive to build relationships with international partners and businesses, to sell the benefits of this great City.
Discenza’s background both in the private and public sectors as a senior executive and leader, has allowed him to gain valuable experience in economic development, public-private partnerships, sales, corporate functions, technology and operations. He was educated at the University of Toronto as an electrical engineer and received his MBA from York University.
Prior to joining Invest Toronto, Discenza was the Senior Vice President of Technology and IT Projects at Infrastructure Ontario. Discenza also brings extensive private sector corporate experience from Bell Canada and AT&T where he held several senior officer level functions in Business Sales, Wholesale, Operations, Customer Service, Capital Management, Engineering, Procurement and Chain and Business Transformation.
Mr. Payne has almost 20 years experience in the international air transportation industry with Fraport AG, the publicly-traded Frankfurt Airport company and one of the leading players in the global airport management industry. Frankfurt Airport ranks among the top 10 airports in the world for both passenger and cargo traffic. Fraport is a pioneer of intermodal concepts (especially air/rail connections) and airport city and sustainability concepts. He serves as the international spokesman and Senior Manager of International Press and Public Relations for Fraport AG. His activities range from corporate media relations and corporate copy writing, to public relations, strategic communications, marketing communications and support, international projects, and strategic development. His work experience outside the aviation industry covers broadcasting as well as high-tech market research and consulting. He brings to YQG strong business knowledge of aviation, Canadian and international gateway initiatives and trends, science and technology, green developments and sustainability, as well as other social and business trends affecting travel and tourism, transportation and logistics, and the European, North American and global marketplaces. He has been widely published in a wide range of international airport, cargo, transportation, travel, and other publications, including in Japan and China.
Ms. Scislowski is the City Council appointee to the YQG Board of Directors. She is a Registered Nurse by background. For the past 15 years she has worked for the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board in a variety of roles as a Nurse Consultant, Nurse Case Manager, Service Delivery Manager and now as a Work Transition Specialist. Her specialty is working with employers, unions and workplace parties.
She is currently a Director for the Windsor Essex Community Health Center. Her past community involvement includes 7 years as a Director for the Windsor Police Services Board, serving the last 3 years as Vice Chair. As part of her role on the Windsor Police Services Board, she was actively involved in the development of the Human Rights Charter for the Windsor Police Service.
Before working for the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board, Ms. Scislowski’s prior experience included positions with Windsor Regional Hospital facilitating the cardiac rehabilitation and diabetes programmes. She is a graduate of the University of Windsor (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) and holds a graduate diploma in Disability Management from Dalhousie University. She holds the designation of Certified Vocational Rehabilitation Professional (CVRP) with the Canadian College of Vocational Rehab Professionals, and is a Registered Rehabilitation Professional (RRP) with the Vocational Rehab Association of Ontario.
Executive Management Team
Carolyn Brown – Chief Executive Officer
Denise Lipari – Director of Finance
Errol McKenzie – Director of Safety and Security
Steve Tuffin – Director of Operations