Engineering A Fire Safe World
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Contact Us

Do you need to reach us? You can get in touch with us through any of the contacts listed on this page.

The Society of Fire Protection Engineers

The Society of Fire Protection Engineers was established in 1950 and incorporated as an independent organization in 1971. It is the professional society representing those practicing the field of fire protection engineering. The Society has over 4500 members globally and over 60 regional chapters.

The following are links to The Society of Fire Protection Engineers and other chartered chapters:

The Southern Ontario Chapter

The Southern Ontario Chapter of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers is chartered by The Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE). Please send all general inquires to info@sfpesoc.com. Additionally Chapter Officers can be contacted directly using the email addresses provided below.

2020/2021 Executive Committee

Officers

Derek Gruchy, Chapter President
president@sfpesoc.com

Derek has served on the SFPE Southern Ontario Chapter’s Executive Committee since 2016. He has been an active SFPE member, since 2002, participating in this Chapter, as well as the National Capital Region Chapter.

Derek has been involved in the fire industry since 2002, and is currently the Program Co-ordinator for the School of Fire Protection Engineering Technology at Seneca College. Derek is a Certified Engineering Technologist with experience in human behaviour during fire emergencies, life safety analysis, exposure risk determination, building and fire code interpretation, and suppression system designs.

Mr. Gruchy specializes in the areas of Human Behaviour During Fire Emergencies, Fire Dynamics and Explosions and also teaches Water Supplies, Fire Pumps, Fire Modelling, Combustion Chemistry, Fire Code and Fire Protection Fundamentals. He has experience in life safety systems commissioning, suppression system designs, performing building inspections and the application of provincial and national fire and building codes, occupant load, and exit capacity calculations.

Mr. Gruchy was the first graduate of Carleton University’s Fire Safety Engineering program, obtaining his Master’s. Derek’s thesis was on “Occupant Behaviour During Fire Emergencies”. His findings were used in the CUrisk model as well as marineEXODUS to better predict and model occupant behaviour. Previous to these studies, Derek also completed a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering Degree (specializing in Computer Integrated Manufacturing) from Carleton University.

Derek also has research experience determining the impact of smoke levels on occupant evacuation capability (performed as part of his thesis, using volunteers from the general public). He has also done research regarding combustion properties for various materials (performed using Seneca College’s cone calorimeter).

As part of the hands-on experience at Seneca College, Derek also leads the live fire demonstrations for students in various courses so that graduates have a true understanding of where Code and standard regulations are derived from.

David Laks, First Vice President & Program Chair
program@sfpesoc.com

David Laks is VP/Risk Control Services Manager Eastern Canada on the Hub International Risk Services team. He brings 30 years of experience in risk control consulting. He develops and implements solutions in the areas of property loss control, building envelop analysis, risk mitigation, construction management, training, business continuity, and regulatory compliance. Prior to joining HUB, Mr. Laks was the Loss Control Manager with a Fortune 100 food manufacturing company responsible for all aspects of property risk management. Currently, Mr. Laks is a member of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Professional Engineers of Ontario (PEO), Risk and Insurance Management Society (RIMS), Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE) – Ontario Chapter, and the Roof Consultants Institute (RCI).

David is current serving on the Executive Committee of the SFPE Southern Ontario Chapter, as a Member-at-Large.

Dorota Kuciej, Second Vice President & Membership Chair
membership@sfpesoc.com

Dorota Kuciej has served on the Executive Committee since 2014.

Dorota Kuciej has over 8 years of experience in the fire industry, and is currently an Associate at LRI Engineering Inc. Dorota is a Certified Technician with experience in fire protection engineering, life safety, building and fire code consulting.

Mrs. Kuciej is responsible for the preparation of building code and fire code assessments for architects, engineers, developers and building owners for commercial, residential, infrastructure and public sector projects, both in Canada and internationally. Experienced in the development of fire engineering equivalencies that are specifically tailored to meet client’s objectives and maintain architectural vision.

Mrs. Kuciej is a graduate of the Civil Engineering Technology program at Ryerson University.

Matthew McDonald, Treasurer
treasurer@sfpesoc.com

Matt specializes in the area of fire and life safety consulting. His educational credentials include a Fire Protection Engineering Technologist Diploma from Seneca College of Applied Arts and Technology. He has been employed by ARENCON Inc., a specialty consulting group assisting clients in the area of Codes, fire safety and design, since February 2018.

Matt is a member of OACETT and is working towards certification with OACETT to become a Certified Engineering Technologist.

Matt’s project experience as a fire protection consultant includes Code compliance assessments and fire safety and evacuation planning.

Prior to employment with ARENCON Inc., Matt was enrolled in the Fire Protection Engineering Technology program at Seneca College where he received training in Building and Fire Codes, various NFPA standards, fire dynamics, sprinkler, fire pumps, fire alarm and chemical extinguishing system design.

Matt received the 2016 and 2017 Society of Fire Protection Engineers Southern Ontario Chapter (SFPESOC) Thomas Chiang Award, the 2017 Fire Suppression Systems Association (FSSA) Scholarship, and the 2017 Legacy Fire Award recognizing both educational and community involvement as well as maintaining high levels of success in his studies.

While attending Seneca College, Matt was the Treasurer and Vice President of the Fire Protection Student Association (FPSA) and was an active volunteer where he assisted in organizing events.

Matt had the opportunity to work at Homestead Land Holdings Limited during his co-op work term where he performed monthly inspections for their high-rise apartment buildings.

Christopher Mastro, Secretary
secretary@sfpesoc.com

Chris is current serving on the Executive Committee of the SFPE Southern Ontario Chapter, as Secretary of SFPE Southern Ontario.

David Vickers, Past President
pastpresident@sfpesoc.com

David has served on SFPE Southern Ontario Chapter's Executive Committee since 2010.

David has over 20 years of experience in the fire industry, and is currently the Director, Project Management at Matteo Gilfillan & Associates Inc.  David is a Certified Engineering Technologist and a Certified Fire Protection Specialist with experience in fire safety planning, building and fire codes, and life safety. David also has a Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibilty Certification Professional designation.

Mr. Vickers works on a variety of projects involving building inspections and the application of provincial and national fire and building codes, consulting on architectural designs and concepts, and code analysis for spatial separation, occupant load, and exit capacity calculations. David also presents training on fire safety planning, building and fire codes, and life safety.

Mr. Vickers is a graduate of the Fire Protection Engineering Technology program at Seneca College and holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Trent University.

Members-at-Large

Cathy Shen

Cathy Shen has over 17 years of experience in the fire industry, and is currently an Associate at LRI Engineering Inc. Cathy is a certified technician by Canadian Fire Alarm Association with experience in all phases of fire alarm and fire protection system engineering, life safety, smoke management system commissioning, building and fire code consulting.

Ms. Shen works as a project manager on a variety of projects involving fire alarm system and fire suppression system design, construction site management and commissioning. Cathy is also a specialist for smoke management system and building fire & life systems integrated testing.

Ms. Shen is a graduate of Fire Alarm Technician program and Fire Sprinkler System Design program at Seneca College. Prior to these studies, Cathy also completed Computer Programming Diploma at Seneca College and a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering Degree (specializing in HVAC system and clean room design) from East China University in Shanghai, China.

Chris Logan

Gordana Tijanic

Jim Chisholm

Jim joined the SFPE Southern Ontario Chapter's Executive in 2016.

Jim is currently a Fire Protection Engineer with Toronto Fire Services. Previously, he was a Fire Protection Engineer with the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management and a Senior Review Engineer in the waste and air/noise units of the Approvals Branch of the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change.

Jim is on the Executive Board of the Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE) and is past chair of the West Toronto Chapter of the Professional Engineers Ontario. He was the organizer and founding President of the Toronto Engineering Club of Speakers (TECS) Toastmaster Club.

Jim has his M.Eng. from the University of Toronto's Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering, Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry.

Julian Valeri

Julian is current serving on the Executive Committee of the SFPE Southern Ontario Chapter, as a Member-at-Large.

Kami Singh

Kami has been involved in the Property and Casualty industry for over 25 years and has considerable expertise in the areas product development, marketing, training and underwriting.

Kami sits on several insurance committees in Canada. Just to name a few,

  • Insurance Bureau of Canada –Toronto
  • Insurance Bureau of Canada –Atlantic Canada
  • Property Underwriter Club – Past President
  • Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario (IBAO)
  • Centre for Study of Insurance Operations. (CSIO)

Kami currently works for Informco Inc. as the Vice President of the Insurance Division, she has held several other senior roles with Insurers in the Insurance Industry. In her current role, she works very closely with the Superintendents of Insurance (Ministry of Finance and Justice) across the country in developing insurance regulations and wordings for the Canadian Insurance Industry.

Her involvement in the industry includes automobile forms, rates and underwriting filing for several major players in the industry, development of property, farm and church insurance products for insurers and serves as a technical wording expert for the Superintendent’s offices, legal counsel, claims, underwriters, and rehabilitation centers.

She was instrumental in launching a major Insurance company, which successfully became one of Canada’s leading insurers in direct writing insurance business.

Above her current role, she sits on other boards and is an Instructor for the Insurance Institute of Canada. Kami has also instructed at Seneca Collage and Sheridan Collage. Kami has won the “Instructor of the Year” award 2 years in row for her outstanding performance.

She is also an Associate of the Insurance Institute of Canada.

Paul Johnston

Paul has served on SFPE Southern Ontario Chapter's Executive Committee since 2008. He is a graduate of the Fire Protection Engineering Technology program at Seneca College and has over 35 years of experience regarding insurance risk engineering. He is currently the Manager in the Risk Management / Loss Control Department for Wawanesa Insurance, and was formerly the Manager in the GTA at Aviva Canada. Paul is a Certified Engineering Technologist, and has also attained his CRM (Canadian Risk Management) and CIP (Chartered Insurance Professional) designations. Aside from various management duties, Paul also works on a variety of risks involving building surveys with the application of various Standards, and Provincial and National fire and building codes.

Stanis Yu

Stanis has served on SFPE Southern Ontario Chapter's Executive Committee since 2006.

Stanis is a Project Handler at Underwriters Laboratories of Canada and has worked in the Fire Protection Division evaluating building materials and systems for their reaction to fire and fire resistive properties since 2002. Stanis also represents ULC on technical committees of ULC standards.

Stanis is a graduate of the University of Toronto's Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering, Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry.

ENGINEERING A FIRE SAFE WORLD

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software