Meet Our Team

The TFI Corporate Officers, Board of Directors and Advisory Committee are an invaluable asset and resource. For over 35 years, our team has been instrumental in helping emerging designers grow into recognized brands.

Corporate Officers

Laurie Belzak Profile Image

Laurie Belzak

Sector Development Officer for Fashion/Apparel & Design
City of Toronto

Laurie has been working with the City’s fashion industry since 1991. She works closely with the Design Industry Advisory Committee (DIAC) which is Canada’s only cross-disciplinary design research organization. In 1992, Laurie created Toronto Fashion Week, and is secretary to the Fashion Industry Advisory Panel (FIAP) whose members represent many fields, including designers and entrepreneurs.

She is a member of the Fashion Program Advisory Committees at George Brown, Seneca and Toronto Metropolitan University; and the Nominating Committee for the Fashion Group International, where she received the Visionary Leadership Award.

David Dixon Profile Image

David Dixon

President
David Dixon Inc.

David Dixon founded his brand in 1995, a year after graduating Toronto Metropolitan University. Since then, his contemporary evening wear, which combines luxury with functionality, has gained global acclaim and is sold around the world.

 His innovative designs have been worn by countless A-listers, such as Linda Evangelista, Coco Rocha, Nicole Kidman, Iman and more. David has also been featured in numerous publications, including Vogue, ELLE and WWD to name a few.  

Karen Jolley Profile Image

Karen Jolley

Associate Judge
Ontario Superior Court of Justice

Prior to Karen’s appointment as judge, she was a partner in a Toronto litigation firm where she practised commercial litigation and administrative law and appeared before all levels of court in Ontario and in the Supreme Court of Canada. Karen has been an advocate for Canadian fashion designers throughout her career.

She joined the Board of Directors of TFI in 2017 and was elected as Chair of the Board in 2021. She considers it a privilege to be able to work with leaders of Canadian fashion and to support and promote existing and up-and-coming Canadian design. 

Susan Langdon Profile Image

Susan Langdon

Executive Director
Toronto Fashion Incubator

Susan is a Toronto-born, third-generation Canadian, who was made a Member of the Order of Canada for her contributions to the fashion industry. In 1994, Langdon was appointed to TFI as the first racialized woman to hold a leadership role in the Canadian fashion industry.

Throughout her career as a fashion entrepreneur, Susan has received much acclaim, including the Fashion Canada Award, Concours Design Award, City of Toronto Industry Achievement Award, Toronto Metropolitan University Alumni Award of Distinction, International Woolmark Award of Distinction, The JoAnna Townsend International Export Award, Icons of Empowerment Award and Fashion Group International’s Fashion Visionary Award. 

Board of Directors & Advisory Committee

Erin Fitzpatrick Profile Image

Erin Fitzpatrick

Founder & CEO
Radley Prep

A TFI resident alumna, with a specialty for building niche brands, Erin is a true entrepreneur. With over ten years of experience in sales, brand building, global sourcing and design, she is passionate about creating thoughtfully and ethically designed products that spread positivity.

Erin has been an active part of the Toronto Fashion Incubator community (as a resident designer) since 2011, and is passionate about supporting emerging Canadian creators through her role at TFI.

Mario Christian Lavorato Profile Image

Mario Christian Lavorato

Creative Director
NOGU

Mario is an award-winning designer who heads up both NOGU and the Daniel Christian Tang brands of jewellery and accessories. He is the treasurer for Fashion Group International and the recipient of the Joe Fresh Center for Fashion Innovation Grant. Mario started his career as an architect before following his love for fashion.

Since he launched NOGU in 2013, it has become one of the fasting growing online jewellery brands in Canada with a focus on inclusivity and giving back to meaningful causes. With the #nogu4all movement, he is breaking down stereotypes in the fashion industry and creating affordable designs made to fit all.

George Nogalo Profile Image

George Nogalo

Sales Manager
Tenaris Global Services Canada

With over 30 years of commercial and business development experience, George has worked with industry-leading companies in the North American steel and energy markets.

George draws on his experience in strategic planning, market development and negotiations in support of emerging designers and the development of the fashion industry in Toronto. 

Christine Raissis Profile Image

Christine Raissis

Consultant

Christine has over 20 years of leadership experience in economic development. She excels at long-term strategic planning, investment attraction, policies and programs that grow fashion and design sectors and more.

Christine has been active on the Board of Directors of the Toronto Fashion Incubator since 2017. She holds a BSc Hon. (University of Guelph), Professional Teaching Certificate (University of British Columbia) and a Diploma in Public Administration (Western University).

Evelyn Reynolds Profile Image

Evelyn Reynolds

Founding Partner & President
Retail Resource Partners Inc. 

With over 30 years as an executive in the retail industry, Evelyn has broad-based international experience in retail, manufacturing and business development. She’s worked for some of the world’s leading retailers, such as Marks & Spencer, Holt Renfrew and Hudson’s Bay (HBC).

Evelyn’s passion is helping the next generation of fashion entrepreneurs reach their goals. She’s been a mentor at TFI since 2010 and on the Board of Directors since 2019. She is also on the Program Advisory Committees of both George Brown and Humber College Fashion Business programs.