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Alumni Updates

Keeping up to date with Laurier graduates

Mary BergWilfrid Laurier University alumna Mary Berg (BA '11) cooked up a big win on the third season of the CTV reality television program MasterChef Canada. Berg was one of 14 competitors on the program who squared off in weekly cooking competitions, with contestants eliminated week by week leading up to a June finale. “It is such a dream come true," Berg told CTV following her win. "I never thought this would be a reality.” Berg, the first female to win MasterChef Canada, studied English and history at Laurier. Her win on the show came with a $100,000 prize. Watch video of Berg's victory and an exclusive inverview with the MasterChef winner.

Brad KatsuyamaLazaridis School of Business and Economics alumnus Brad Katsuyama (BBA ’01) has been named to Fortune magazine's "40 Under 40" list of the most influential people in business. The Laurier graduate is well-known for founding the Investors Exchange, or IEX, an alternate stock exchange designed to combat high-frequency trading.

ShadShad (a.k.a. Shadrach Kabango) (BBA '05) released a followup to his acclaimed hip-hop recording Flying Colours, exploring new musical territory with the album Your Boy Tony Braxton Adult Contempt. The recording has an adult contemporary feel, taking inspiration from late-1980s and early-1990s pop and rock. In August, Shad also also signed off as host of the CBC Radio program Q. He is working with CBC on the possible development of a new radio program.

David ThomsonThe National Football League has appointed David Thomson (BA '89) managing director of NFL Canada. Thomson will be responsible for the NFL's strategic vision and business operations in Canada, including fan development and engagement, sponsorship, consumer products, licensing and marketing. Thomson previously held positions at Coca-Cola Canada, Molson and Clorox.

Laurier graduate Kordo Doski (BA '07) premiered his film Mikael to a North American audience at June's Dances With Films independent film festival at Hollywood's TCL Chinese Theatre. The film – which tells the story of Mikael, who pursues his lifelong dream of a professional soccer career in his ancestral home of Kurdistan, Iraq – was previously screened at the Duhok International Film Festival in Kurdistan. Doski, who wrote, directed and starred in the film, was born in Kurdistan, raised in Canada and currently lives in Los Angeles.

John McKenzie (BBA '95) has been named chief financial officer of TMX Group Limited. Since joining TMX Group as director of finance and administration in 2000, McKenzie has held increasingly senior executive positions in corporate strategy, development and finance. He is a chartered professional accountant and earned an MBA from Edinburgh Business School, Heriot-Watt University, as well as his Laurier degree.

Andrew Ness (BMus '86) was recently appointed to the position of Dean of International at Humber College. He previously served as Director of International Services at Sheridan College. Ness possesses more than 30 years experience working in higher education in Canada and around the globe, including holding positions with Queen’s University and Laurier, as well as in the United Arab Emirates.