Contributors Bios

Catherine Swift

Catherine Swift is President of the Coalition of Concerned Manufacturers & Businesses of Canada (CCMBC). She was previously President of Working Canadians from 2015-2021 & President & CEO of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) from 1995-2014. She was Chief Economist of the CFIB from 1987-1995, Senior Economist with TD Bank from 1983-1987 & held several positions with the federal government from 1976-1983.

She has published numerous articles in journals, magazines & other media on issues such as free trade, finance, entrepreneurship & women business owners. Ms. Swift is a past President of the Empire Club of Canada, a former Director of the CD Howe Institute, the Canadian Youth Business Foundation, SOS Children’s Villages, past President of the International Small Business Congress and current Director of the Fraser Institute. She was cited in 2003 & 2012 as one of the most powerful women in Canada by the Women’s Executive Network & is a recipient of the Queen’s Silver & Gold Jubilee medals.

She has an Honours BA and MA in Economics.

Janet Ecker

Janet Ecker is a former Ontario Finance Minister, Minister of Education, Minister of Community and Social Services and Government House Leader in the governments of Premier Mike Harris and Premier Ernie Eves. After her political career, she served as the founding CEO of the Toronto Financial Services Alliance, a public-private partnership dedicated to building Toronto region into an international financial centre. She currently sits on a number of corporate and non-profit boards, agencies and advisory committees.

Ms. Ecker received the Order of Canada for her public service contributions and was recognized as one of the “Most Influential People in the World’s Financial Centres” by Financial Centres International. She also received a “Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award” from the Women’s Executive Network and the Richard Ivey School of Business, among other awards. She is also one of the founders of Equal Voice, a national, multi-partisan organization working to elect more women.

Rod Mawhood

Rod Mawhood is a lifelong Niagara native who has had the pleasure of working in all three mediums - Radio, Print and TV - for over 20 years. His first announcing gig was with the then St. Catharines Stompers. Since then he's worked in radio and TV in Toronto, and currently is the announcer for the Niagara IceDogs and Niagara River Lions.

Rod also covers the Buffalo Bills for FOX Sports and the Buffalo Sabres for NBC Sports.

Chris George

Chris George is an advocate, government relations advisor, and writer/copy editor. As president of a public relations firm established in 1994, Chris provides discreet counsel, tactical advice and management skills to CEOs/Presidents, Boards of Directors and senior executive teams in executing public and government relations campaigns and managing issues. Prior to this PR/GR career, Chris spent seven years on Parliament Hill on staffs of Cabinet Ministers and MPs. He has served in senior campaign positions for electoral and advocacy campaigns at every level of government. Today, Chris resides in Almonte, Ontario where he and his wife manage Contact Chris at

Sheryl Johnson

Sheryl L. Johnson brings a proactive, creative, and vibrant attitude to her labour, employment and human resource law practice. Sheryl has extensive experience in representing clients in both the provincial and federal jurisdictions on all matters relating to employment and labour law, including for example construction labour law, employment related civil wrongful dismissal, human rights, and labour board litigation; privacy, governance, statutory and regulatory compliance, and executive compensation matters; as well as conducting workplace training and workplace investigations. Sheryl is also an avid educator and writer, including authoring a bi-weekly business column in The Niagara Independent and the text: Sexual Harassment in Canada: A Guide for Understanding and Prevention. Sheryl enjoys in her free time giving back to the Niagara community. She is a member of the WIN Council, Chair of the Board of Directors for the Niagara Jazz Festival, Vice-President of the Board of Directors for the YWCA Niagara Region, Secretary of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Niagara Falls Board of Directors, a board member of the Niagara Home Builders Association, and a board member of the Women in Construction group of the Niagara Construction Association.

You can connect with her on LinkedIn or contact her at

Dave Redekop

Dave Redekop is a retired elementary resource teacher who worked part-time at the St. Catharines Courthouse for two years before accepting a position as Executive Director at Redeemer Bible Church in Niagara Falls in 2023. He has worked on political campaigns since high school and attended university in South Carolina for five years, where he earned a Master’s in American History with a specialization in Civil Rights. Dave loves reading biographies.

Daniel Perry

Daniel Perry is a Senior Consultant with Hill & Knowlton. With over a decade in politics, Daniel is an experienced campaigner and has provided political advice to all levels of government. Daniel has received a number of awards during his career including being voted Ottawa's top consultant by his peers.

Lee Harding

Lee Harding is a Research Fellow for the Frontier Centre for Public Policy and a freelance journalist. He is a former Saskatchewan Director for the Canadian Taxpayers Federation and parliamentary assistant to a Member of Parliament. He also reported for CBC, CTV, and Global in Regina, Saskatchewan, and produced features for 100 Huntley Street.

Lee has a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Calgary, a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Regina, and a Bachelor of Arts in Theology from Briercrest College and Seminary.