Leadership in Consulting Engineering Program

Skills & Knowledge for successful leaders.

Navigate change with effective tools for building inclusive, resilient teams.

Now accepting applications until February 15, 2023

A comprehensive eight month program that provides relevant skills, knowledge, and connection opportunities for building successful leaders in the Consulting Engineering industry.

Relevant Skills + Knowledge

We continuously update and refine the program structure and content to ensure it’s relevant to our industry today, and in the coming years.


Engagement & Collaboration

A program built around opportunities to engage with content, build connections, and collaborate with experts and peers across the province.


Innovation built in

Each course has been developed with innovative thinking and problem solving at it’s core.


2023 Program at a glance

Online Classes | 10AM-3PM PST  |  Program cost: $2150 + GST

March 15
April 5
April 26
May 17
June 7
October 4
October 18
November 8
November 29
Leading with Purpose
Effective Communications
Managing Organizational Change
Inclusive Workplaces
Business Development for Engineers
Contracts Part 1: Parts, Parties, and Risk Management
Contracts Part 2: Agreements Review, Management, and Negotiation
Finance for Consultants
Your Leadership Journey
Shelia Bouman, High Impact Lab
Catherine Ducharme, Fluency
Leslie Fast, Leslie Fast and Associates Inc.
Kai Scott, TransFocus Consulting
Erin Davis, Erin Davis Co.
Ralph Kison, Kison Inc.
Jeff McLellan, BFL Canada
Tanya Sadlo, McElhanney
Cameron Elder, Harper Grey LLP
Mike Currie, KWL
Janesa Charles, Hedgehog Technologies
Shelia Bouman, High Impact Lab

Session Details

Empty First
Session 1: Leading with Purpose

The very best leaders are restless in their desire to elevate their impact on people and results. Learners at the core, they constantly seek opportunities for improvement in themselves and in their organizations. This workshop will engage participants in discussions to explore what leadership means to them and the impact they want to have as a leader. Participants will start to define a clear purpose and articulate their goals and objectives for this program and their leadership journey, setting the foundation for leaders to learn with and from each other as they take the first steps in realizing their purpose.

Facilitator: Shelia Bouman, Principal, High Impact Lab

As a partner of High Impact Lab, Sheila and her team have partnered with hundreds of leaders to create exceptional organizations by elevating leaders’ individual and collective impact. Sheila’s purpose is to embolden leaders to build organizations where people can truly be and do their best in order to deliver results that matter. Sheila has 8 years as a CEO and an executive leading growth and change in public and non-profit organizations on top of her 15 years as a consultant.  Sheila’s strength is to help leaders have a remarkable impact by paying attention to the intersection between strategy, culture and their own leadership.

Session 2: Effective Communications

Communication has always been an imperative for leadership, but never as much as today. Massive change and persistent uncertainty in a distributed world, increases the need for relational communication not just transactional communication. More than ever people need human-centered leaders who are skilled and constantly investing in authentic communication to engage their teams, instill confidence and inspire performance. It is the quality of the communication that connects us and provides forward momentum and results, yet it isn’t given the priority it needs. This interactive session explores our beliefs about communications and what gets in the way of communicating more. It offers tools and focuses on communication practices that address our complex and distributed reality. We learn how to create the conditions for better communications and how a coach-approach to communications can build more self-sufficient, independent teams.


Catherine Ducharme ACC, CLC 

Founder and Chief Learning Officer of Fluency Catherine is a career communicator, entrepreneur and speaker who brings 30+ years communications and leadership experience in a range of industries. Over her career Catherine has held senior leadership roles in PR, Corporate, Internal and Marketing Communications, primarily in the high tech and biotech sectors. Her experience leading large teams, being part of senior leadership teams and running her own company is real, lived and relatable. Catherine is an ICF Associate Certified Coach and Certified Leadership Coach.  She is also a past President of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) regional board and local BC chapter. In 2021, she was recognized as IABC’s Regional Leader of the Year.

Colin Macrae ACC, CLC

Founder and Chief Business Officer of Fluency, Colin is an action-driven, people-focused marketing and communications leader and coach/facilitator who has worked across a full spectrum of industries. His experience has been shaped over his 25-year career in the marketing and communications field and brought to a full global scale and learning through almost 15 years in leadership roles at Electronic Arts. Colin is an ICF Associate Certified Coach and Certified Leadership Coach and a Certified Designing Your Life Coach. Colin is also certified in delivering the Leadership Versatility Index 360 assessment.

Session 3: Managing Organizational Change

With the rate and complexity of change increasing in people’s personal and professional lives, understanding strategies for navigating and leading successful change is more important than ever. In this course, we’ll explore the different roles in organizational change as well as strategies that can be used to prepare for, implement and sustain change. The course is based on a combination of change management thought leadership and the Global Standards in Change Management.

Facilitator: Leslie Fast, CPHR, CCMP, Senior Consultant and President, Leslie Fast and Associates Inc. 

Leslie helps clients successfully implement strategies through advice and support on business transformation, change management and organizational development. Leveraging experience with a variety of industries, companies and projects, Leslie partners with clients to develop strategies, plans and activities aligned to their business context, culture and desired outcomes. She is a Chartered Professional in Human Resources (CPHR) and a Certified Change Management Professional (CCMP). Leslie is trained in Change Management methodologies, including: Prosci (ADKAR) and Accelerating Implementation Methodologies (AIM) and is an Instructor with Sauder School of Business at University of British Columbia. 

Session 4: Inclusive Workplaces

Equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) are top of mind for most organizations and leaders, but in many cases, there is a gap between awareness and having the skills and knowledge required to lead meaningful action that will effectively cultivate inclusive workplaces. The facilitators will engage participants in exploring topics of personal responsibility, bias awareness, and effective inclusive practices. The workshop will lead participants to consider redefining EDI as an opportunity rather than as a challenge to be managed and will explore actions for creating inclusive workplaces at the personal, interpersonal, and organization level.


Erin Davis

Erin Davis (she/her) is an award-winning expert, inspirational speaker, and global thought leader in the field of diversity and inclusion – and is committed to challenging the status quo and helping others make the same commitment authentically and bravely. As Lead Inclusion Strategist at Erin Davis Co. (est. 2021), she has supported over thirty organizations in unlocking their role in creating a more inclusive world by empowers diversity and inclusion champions at all levels to find their voice and supports their journey to create a more inclusive world, one conversation at a time.

Kai Scott, MA, President of TransFocus Consulting (He/Him)

Kai pairs his technical skills from 15 years as a social scientist conducting social impact assessments in the mining industry with his lived experiences as a transgender man to develop innovative solutions for greater inclusion of gender diversity and other equity-seeking groups. He uses quantitative and qualitative methods—like interviews, surveys, systems reviews, structured decision-making, and spatial analyses—to develop solutions that create positive, measurable change. 

Session 5: Business Development for Engineers

The Professional Selling Skills workshop provides participants with the critical business skills to enable them to succeed in today’s competitive and ever-changing market. This workshop will provide participants with a proven framework and foundation from which to secure work from existing clients and proactively engage in business development activities with new prospects.  The workshop will also provide participants with strategies to differentiate themselves from their competitors in a professional manner and earn the right to do business by understanding client requirements and offering high-value solutions that motivate clients to make informed buying decisions.

Facilitator: Ralph Kison

Ralph Kison serves as President of Kison Inc, where he’s helped individuals and organizations achieve their goals faster through a mix of coaching, training, consulting, and strategic planning services for more than 30 years. He is also Founder of Growth Through Learning Academy, an online training platform equipping today’s professionals with the skills they need in Personal Branding, Priority Management, Business Development, and Sales. 

Ralph is a graduate of the University of British Columbia Marketing and Sales Management Program. He is also a Certified Marketing Executive (CME) and Certified Sales Executive (CSE). Ralph is also a member and past President of Sales and Marketing Executives International of Vancouver (SMEI) and past President of the Canadian Society for Marketing Professional Services of Vancouver (CSMPS).

Ralph has taught professional sales courses at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT), as well as for Sales and Marketing Executives International of Vancouver (SMEI).

He brings his passion and an experienced perspective to everything he does — transforming organizations and their employees so they can maximize their impact and achieve their true potential.

Session 6: Contracts Part 1: Parts, Parties, and Risk Management

In this first of two workshops on the topic of contracts, participants will learn about key elements of contracts, agreements, and risk management. The facilitators will provide a diverse and comprehensive review of key elements of contract terms, contract timing, insurance, errors and omissions, claims, and fields reviews. Participants will learn about current contractual language challenges facing the consulting engineering industry. Contract terms will be explored, considering scope of work, standard of care, representation and warranties, intellectual property and ownership of work product, reliance on documents, as well as compensation and payment terms.


Jeff McLellan, Professional Services Division, Practice Leader (Western Region), BFL Canada

Jeff joined BFL in 2005 and in his role as Practice Leader for the Professional Services Division, he works with engineering and architecture clients across Western Canada.  Jeff is committed to supporting the architectural and engineering community, presenting for different programs and events, including the Engineers and Geoscientists BC and AIBC annual conferences in the past as well as providing seminars for ACEC-BC’s general membership and YPG groups, presentations to the BCIT architecture students, and offering in house seminars to professional services organizations.  Jeff serves on the boards of the Architecture Foundation of BC’s board as well as ACE-BC.  He is chair of the ACEC-BC membership committee and the Architecture Foundation of BC’s golf tournament chair.

Tanya Sadlo, Executive VP and General Counsel, McElhanney

Tanya joined McElhanney in 2007 and is currently the Executive Vice President, Internal Operations and General Counsel.  Tanya is responsible for risk management at McElhanney, and is involved in major contract negotiations, insurance procurement, claims handling, corporate governance and all other legal matters and general business advice.  She also oversees the efficient and effective delivery of support services, including legal, human resources, marketing and communications functions, across McElhanney.  Prior to joining McElhanney, Tanya practiced law at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP in the commercial real estate group.  She is also a founding member of the Woman Infrastructure Network (WIN), Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW), and active in the Employment, Construction, Corporate Counsel and Business subsections of the Canadian Bar Association.  Tanya is committed to community service and enthusiastically supports equity, diversity and inclusion in leadership, particularly in STEM roles.  She lives in Ladner with her husband and three amazing children, traveling the world, hiking, skiing, and cooking.    

Cameron Elder, Partner, Harper Grey LLP

Cameron is a Partner with Harper Grey and chair of their Construction & Engineering Law Group. Cameron’s civil litigation practice is diverse, spanning the areas of health law, construction, commercial litigation, and real estate disputes.

Cameron’s construction law practice is focused on defending engineers and architects against error and omissions claims, and advising on risk management, including contracts, insurance, and pre-litigation dispute resolution.

He has many years of experience defending construction defect and delay claims relating to public infrastructure, residential, and commercial developments.  He has acted for architects, structural engineers, mechanical engineers and geotechnical engineers, among others.  He has particular expertise dealing with geotechnical claims arising out of erosion, differential settlement, landslides, and drainage.

Session 7: Contracts Part 2: Agreement Review, Management, and Negotiations

In this workshop, participants will build upon the foundational material covered in Contracts Part 1. Contracts Part 2 focuses on the importance of fair agreements to consulting engineering companies. This includes detailed discussion of typical problematic contract clauses, and review of standard agreements that have been developed with the objective of being fair and balanced. The workshop also reviews emerging agreement issues arising from the implementation of the Professional Governance Act and the associated regulation of firms. The workshop will provide suggestions for setting up a system for contract management within a consulting engineering company, and tips for negotiating agreement clauses with clients.

Facilitator: Mike Currie, Principal, Senior Water Resources Engineer, KWL

Mike Currie is an accomplished water resources engineer and has been with KWL for over 30 years, following 7 years with the Water Management Branch of B.C. Environment. Mike was President of Kerr Wood Leidal Associates from 2006 to 2015, and developed KWL’s internal system for contract management. His technical experience encompasses virtually all aspects of water resources engineering. He is one of the province’s leading experts in debris flow hazard mitigation, flood emergency response and recovery, flood protection and floodplain management. He is a national past-president of the Canadian Water Resources Association and past president of the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – British Columbia. Three projects he managed have been recognized for excellence by the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – British Columbia. He has also been recognized with service awards from the Canadian Water Resources Association, Engineers and Geoscientists BC, and Engineers Canada.

Session 8: Finance for Consultants

This workshop will provide participants with a foundational knowledge of financial statements and the use of key financial analysis methods/tools. These financial concepts will be discussed in the context of consulting engineering and will include example case studies, scenarios, and interactive activities to drive a practical understanding of the material.

Facilitator: Janesa Charles, CPA, MM, Corporate Controller, Hedgehog Technologies

Janesa brings with her a background of accounting and customer facing expertise across a wide variety of industries. Her experience and expertise have been driven by her belief in accountability to all stakeholders in any business. She believes in continuous learning and aims to remain current with ongoing changes in technology and all accounting standards and policies that guide the way we work and do business.

Session 9: Your Leadership Journey

Wrapping up the leadership program, participants will reflect upon their experience in the program, share their learnings with each other, be encouraged to share real-time leadership challenges and support each other to solve them. The program will close with an introduction to the importance of cultivating focus and energy in order to stay purposeful as a leader, inviting leaders to use the learning to refine their leadership purpose and chart the path for moving forward as their journey continues.

Facilitator: Shelia Bouman, Principal, High Impact Lab

As a partner of High Impact Lab, Sheila and her team have partnered with hundreds of leaders to create exceptional organizations by elevating leaders’ individual and collective impact. Sheila’s purpose is to embolden leaders to build organizations where people can truly be and do their best in order to deliver results that matter. Sheila has 8 years as a CEO and an executive leading growth and change in public and non-profit organizations on top of her 15 years as a consultant.  Sheila’s strength is to help leaders have a remarkable impact by paying attention to the intersection between strategy, culture and their own leadership.

Ready to elevate your leadership skills?

Applications are open until February 15, 2023 |  Program Fee: $2150+GST

Consulting Engineering firms are partners, experts, and innovators working for British Columbians.

Our mandate is to advance the business interests of consulting engineering firms in BC by advocating for fair business practices and building awareness of the industry’s contributions to society and innovative technical expertise.

Association of Consulting Engineering Companies British Columbia

Suite 1258 - 409 Granville St.
Vancouver, British Columbia V6C 1T2
604.687.2811 | info[at]acec-bc.ca

© 2023 Association of Consulting Engineering Companies British Columbia