About this class

Please join co-hosts Linda Flynn and Lon Appleby for a special alumni event as we discuss “Making Lemonade” when life gives you lemons. DC graduates Tianna McFarlane (‘12 Operations Management), Kerri-Ann Williams (‘16 Biomedical Engineering Technology), and Brent Lessard (‘14 Mechanical Engineering Technology) will join college president, Don Lovisa, to share challenges they have faced and how they overcame them. An opportunity to learn and ask questions about their careers. This event is brought to you by the Durham College Alumni Association, the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and the Durham College Student Association.To sign up for this event in advance and to receive login information, please go to EventBrite.



Don Lovisa

Don Lovisa is President of Durham College, a position he has held for the past thirteen years of his more than 30 years in post-secondary education.

In this position, Don leads a talented group of more than 2,300 full and part-time employees dedicated to leading the way. Durham College has thrived under Lovisa’s leadership, growing to more than 13,800 full-time, post-secondary and apprenticeship students and over 30,000 students in total.

Lovisa is considered a leader in the college system and the broader provincial and national community. He is currently on the board of Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICAN) and was formerly the Chair of Colleges Ontario and co-chair of the Ontario Council on Articulation and Transfer (ONCAT). He takes great pride in Durham College being recognized as a GTA Top Employer and one of Canada’s Greenest Employers.

Lovisa has a Master’s degree in International Management, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology, a diploma in Adult Education, and has completed the course work for a Ph.D. in Community College Leadership.

Tianna McFarlane

Tianna McFarlane is the founder of Heal In Colour, the first Canadian company to sell adhesive bandages for black and brown skin. She has revolutionized the way people shop for bandages with the mission of making black and brown bandages the norm. She received her Business – Operations Management diploma in 2012 from Durham College and has always been passionate about starting her own business to create change in the world. Tianna works fulltime at York University administering faculty and student support to Associate Deans in the Faculty of Science where she is a member of the Committee on Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity and the York U Black Staff Network. Recognized as a change-maker by the Toronto Star, Tianna is driven by inclusion, innovation and inspiring other Black women to start their own businesses.

She couldn’t find bandages to match her..

Heal in Colour Website

Dr. Kerri-Ann Williams

Kerri-Ann is a certified project management professional (PMP) with 15 years of project management experience across various industries including military operations, private security management, food processing, quality management systems and most recently healthcare technology.

She currently holds the position of Director of Projects and Research at a Medical software conglomerate that focuses on developing and delivering digital neurocognitive assessments. She is a proud graduate (2016) of the Biomedical Engineering Technology program at Durham College (where she currently teaches as a part-time faculty member) and credits her studies there as one of the best decisions she has made for her professional development and career.

Kerri-Ann holds a Bachelor of Science in Biotechnology, an Advanced Diploma in Biomedical Engineering Technology, a Master of Business Administration, specializing in Healthcare Management and a Doctor of Business Administration with a focus on Project Management. She is a native of the beautiful island of Jamaica, a married mom of one, life-long learner and summer lover.

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Brent Lessard

After graduating from the Mechanical Engineering Technology program at Durham College in 2014, Brent co-founded a globally distributed engineering organization called rLoop. The decentralized organization focuses on developing new technologies that address global problems. Under his leadership, the organization grew to over 1,500 people from more than 50 countries and won several international awards including from SpaceX, the Dubai Futures Foundation, and IndieGoGo. Since graduating from Durham College, Brent has also had the opportunity to work with organizations such as NASA, Boeing, SpaceX, and the Boring Company, and has earned his Project Management Professional (PMP) designation. Today, Brent is also the Director of Programs & Operations at Venture Development Institute, a specialized startup incubator based in Pickering, where he has helped raise over $40M for more than 150 startups.

Outside of his professional career, Brent is a devoted father, a board director at the Durham College Alumni Association, and a vintage motorcycle enthusiast.


Linda Flynn, Durham College

Associate vice-president, Development and Alumni Affairs