YellowYellow Quarterly Trailblazer – Julia Gartley, P. Eng, MBA

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Hot off the press! We’re back again with brand new interview as part of the YY Trailblazer series, shining the spotlight on industry professionals who are making a difference by prioritizing – and championing – sustainability. Want to nominate a colleague or friend for the next segment? Send us a message at

This quarter’s trailblazer is Julia Gartley, a mineral processing professional engineer, project management executive, and committed volunteer within the mining community.

As Vice President – Health, Safety, and Sustainability, Julia leads the ESG and sustainability strategy at one of Canada’s top engineering consulting firms, where she is also a member of the Board of Directors. Julia also lends her industry insight and expertise to a TSXV-listed polymetallic mining exploration company, and Mine Shift, a non-profit organization focused on creating safe and inclusive workplaces in the mining industry. 

Our interview with Julia reveals her authentic passion for promoting sustainability and equity in her work, board responsibilities, and personal life. Read on to learn more about how Julia, a genuine trailblazer, is doing her part to make an impact in the mining industry. 

YellowYellow (YY): As an active board member for both private and public organizations, what do you consider to be the primary challenge in planning and implementing an effective ESG strategy? 

Julia Gartley (JG): When it comes to setting and implementing an effective ESG strategy, it’s important to first understand your organization’s current state of affairs and set a baseline. By establishing a baseline, we can identify areas for improvement and set realistic and measurable goals that make sense for the company. In addition, from experience serving on both public and private boards, keeping ahead of continuously evolving standards is a challenge all boards are facing. ESG is a broad framework covering a spectrum of issues, so it is important to identify the true priorities where the organization can effect meaningful change. By focusing on material risks and opportunities specific to our operations, we can drive positive change more effectively. 

YY: How does your technical experience in mineral processing shape your decision-making process when formulating an ESG strategy?

JG: My background in mineral processing lets me bring a different perspective for how to approach and tackle problems. In mineral processing you are always at the front end of the design process, waiting for the inputs from other functions to feed into the design. This is the same position I find myself in with setting ESG goal and targets. We’re at the beginning of the design process – I need to organize the inputs and take a step-by-step approach to emphasize and anticipate potential issues, then incorporate preventive measures early in the design process. 

YY: As a board member of Mine Shift, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting safe, inclusive, and respectful workplaces in the mining industry, you recently shared a thought-provoking question on LinkedIn: “Do you aspire to be ‘part of the change you wish to see in the world?'” This adaptation of Gandhi’s famous quote carries significant meaning. How does this question resonate with your personal values and career?

JG: This question speaks to my core values. Rising to a board-level position at multiple organizations in the industry allows me to influence and promote positive change, advocate for policies and practices that can create lasting and authentic impact. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect and has a right to work in an environment where they feel safe and valued. This is how I’m striving to part of the change I wish to see in the world around me, including in my current role on the board at Mine Shift. Mine Shift was born out of the MeToo movement by a team of industry professionals who wanted to develop a platform to bring to light the need for change and accountability within the mining industry. My own personal experience, including a MeToo moment, has fueled my commitment to Mine Shift’s vision and purpose.

YY: Your career in the mining industry has provided you with the opportunity to visit many unique places worldwide. Is there one destination that stands out as your favorite, and if so, why? What is one valuable lesson you have learned by exploring other countries & cultures?

JG: It would be too hard to pick just one! The opportunity itself to explore these places has been truly incredible. I’ve been fortunate to visit so many unique places worldwide that I would likely never have travelled to if it weren’t for my work in mining. Before the pandemic, I was able to visit the DRC, other parts Southern Africa and South America. I’ve also spent some time in various communities across BC, the Yukon, Ontario, and parts of the US. In many of these travels I spent time living, or staying, in mining camps or small towns. As such, I got a glimpse of what life is like for the workers who live in the nearby communities and better understand their daily lives. This experience emphasized the notion that despite how different our lives and experiences may be from those around us, you can always find somewhere you share common ground. Thinking about this reminds me to look out for shared values rather than differences. 

YY extends a huge thanks Julia for her time and insight! Our next YY Trailblazer interview will be out next month. Did something catch your eye in this month’s interview? Don’t hesitate to reach out to us at to get started on your ESG journey. 

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Jeff Garcia-Seminario


He holds a Bachelor of Anthropology from Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos (Peru) and a Masters in Science in Sustainability and Responsibility  (Ashridge Business School, UK).   As a lifelong learner, he recently completed a Global Business Management (High Honours) at Seneca College in Toronto. 

Jeff brings global experience in leading corporate social responsibility (CSR) and community engagement projects in the extractive sector.   Jeff excels in stakeholder mapping, community engagement, and conflict resolution.   Applying his private and public sector experiences, Jeff can bridge cultural and historical divides between extractive industries and their communities.  His areas of focus include food security, sustainable procurement, and good governance. Most recently, Jeff contributed to the development of an ESG strategy for a multi-national company.  

Jeff’s native language is Spanish. He enjoys morning runs in the neighbouring parks.

Kaitlyn D'Lima


Kaitlyn D’Lima holds both a Bachelor of Business Administration and a Master of Science and Sustainability Management degree from the University of Toronto.   She is also trained in greenhouse gas (GHG) accounting.

She brings extensive experience in sustainability and business transformational projects. She is known for her ability to execute projects of any size with both urgency and accuracy.   Kaitlyn has a natural talent for improving stakeholder engagement. She’s a real trailblazer when it comes to benchmarking and research.

Kaitlyn is a runner who participates in outdoor adventure races.

Arun Balu Pazhayannur


Arun B Pazhayannur holds a degree in mechanical engineering and is a Chartered Accountant. He also has an MBA from the Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario. Along with his academic achievements, he has a thorough knowledge of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) principles, which he incorporates into his consulting work. 

Arun is well-known for his leadership abilities as well as his strong skills in data analysis, financial modeling, and operations management. He has been recognized for his ability to identify practical solutions and deliver value to clients ranging from banks to payment companies to software providers. Arun is also a past President of Toastmasters Club. 

In his free time, Arun enjoys scuba diving.In his spare time, Arun likes to scuba dive. 

Gregory Donovan

Senior Advisor

Gregory  Donovan is a Chartered Accountant. He is a Fundamentals of Sustainable Accounting (FSA) Credential Holder.  He obtained an Honours in Business Adminstrations (HBA) from the Ivey Business School (Western University) and a Master or Laws (LLM) from the London School of Economics. Gregory is the CEO of Avondale Private Capital, a sustainable finance firm focused on energy transition finance and carbon markets.  He has presented on these topics at conferences in Canada, the US and UK.  

Greg participates in the occasional triathlon and loves to go skiing and sailing with his two young children.

Margaux Loptson

Associate & US Operations Lead

Margaux Loptson holds a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) and a Bachelor of Arts (Criminology) from Pennsylvania State University. In addition, she holds several research certifications, including Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans

She has been an essential player in AI-powered teaching and learning projects as a User Experience (UX) lead.  Margaux is known for applying her design thinking, problem-solving and analytical skills to make a positive impact. She is a native French speaker

Margaux is a fitness enthusiast who can be found hiking around Central Park in NYC.

Ritika Jain

Associate / Responsible Supply Chain Lead

Ritika Jain holds a Masters in Environmental Sciences, Policy and Management from Lund University (Sweden)  and a Bachelor of Technology from Indraprastha University (India). As a lifelong learner, she is pursuing a Graduate Diploma in Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability at the University of Toronto.

Ritika is a recycling and responsible supply chain specialist.  Through her work, she collaborates with organizations to implement circular economy focused policies to ensure compliance with regulations.  

Her proficiency in data analytics and with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) enable her to manage complex sustainability data. Ritika also volunteers with the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network, engaging with youth to drive positive change.  

Ritika is a native Hindi speaker.  She is a certified hiking leader who enjoys travelling.

Jonathan Spence

Associate & Western Canada Operations Lead

Jonathan Spence holds an Honours Bachelor of Integrated Sciences (Earth and Environmental Sciences) from McMaster University and has his certification in Geographic Information Sciences from the ESRI Canada Center of Excellence at McMaster University. Jonathan worked as a research analyst in the environment and sustainability group for a TSX listed company.  

He is pursuing his Ph.D. in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Alberta, where he is researching the development of carbon capture techniques and their applications to the mining industry.  Jonathan is focused on helping companies to minimize their carbon footprint while supporting their economic growth.   

Jonathan is an avid water polo player and coach. He plays for the local National Championship League team. 

Gurnoor Gandhi

VP Business Development & Strategic Partnerships

Gurnoor Gandhi holds an MBA from Ivey Business School (Western University) and a postgraduate diploma in Maritime Energy Management (Sweden). Gurnoor brings experience with sustainability frameworks including TCFD, GRI, and CDP and is pursuing FSA credential (SASB). 

Gurnoor has global leadership experience in the shipping industry managing assets worth millions of dollars on the high seas and has led diverse teams worked in Monaco, Singapore, and India. Most recently, he led organizational development and client partnerships at CARD, a non-profit focused on rural development and renewable energy.

Gurnoor brings a blend of technical and leadership skills. He applied his knowledge of greenhouse gas accounting and carbon capture to support clients with niche energy transition projects. He is known for putting his problem-solving, stakeholder management, and project management skills to work to help firms expedite their ESG Journey. 

Gurnoor is a certified BMW adventure motorcyclist who finds off-road rides rejuvenating for body and spirit.  He enjoys hiking with his family.

Lisa-Annabel Ellis

Founder & CEO

Lisa Annabel Ellis holds an Honours Bachelor of Science (Environmental Science) from the University of Toronto and an MBA from the Ivey Business School (Western University). She is a certified Project Manager Professional (PMP) with a Six Sigma Green Belt. Lisa is a Fundamentals of Sustainable Accounting (FSA) Level II Candidate. Applying her deep expertise in business and operational strategies, she has led award-winning transformational initiatives.

Drawing on her well-rounded science and finance expertise, she launched YellowYellow to help clients advance their sustainability practices. As an advocate of transparency and good governance, she partners with clients to understand their risks and opportunities to generate superior long-term value. Stakeholders across the value chain recognize the impact of this effort. She has been called upon to be a keynote speaker and lecturer.

Lisa is an advanced scuba diver who enjoys most water-related sports.