Our Researchers

Debbie Gordon, Director of the kidsmediacentre at Centennial College School of Communications, Media, Arts, and Design
Debbie Gordon is the Director of the kidsmediacentre (kmc) at Centennial College's School of Communications, Media, Arts, and Design. Working in partnership with the College's post-graduate Children's Media Program, the kidsmediacentre functions as a think tank and research centre serving the children's creative industry in Canada.

Debbie oversees a myriad of research projects for the centre including user testing and market research of children's properties, applied research (accessing federal and provincial grants to partner students with industry) and social science research that explores children's media futures. Since its inception in 2010, the kidsmediacentre has worked with Nick Jr., YTV, Treehouse, TVOKids, Kids' CBC, eOne Entertainment, Spin Master, 9Story, Technicolour, NDI Teravision, Breakthrough Entertainment and more.

Prior to establishing the kmc, Debbie worked in the television, advertising and marketing industries for 20 years building brands and coordinating market research for a number of Tier One companies (Unilever, Hershey, Heinz, Fairmont Hotels, Levi's, Alberto Culver, TDTrust, Bermuda Tourism, etc). Debbie has helped design digital, corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices for Microsoft, Universal Studios, Xbox, the Ontario Government and Dove (Self Esteem Fund). In 2001, she created her own media and digital literacy consulting practice called Mediacs, teaching media literacy to children, parents, and educators. She has helped school boards develop digital best practices and in 2011 her series on Digital Kids was a finalist in the Canadian Magazine Awards.

Glen C. Taylor, Professor Centennial College, Principal Investigator at ARIC
Glen C. Taylor is the owner of eWerks Inc., an adjunct Professor at Centennial College (SETAS-ICET, Progress Campus - Toronto On CA), and a Principal Investigator at the Applied Research and Innovation Centre - Centennial College. For over 25 years he has been involved in the design and manufacture of industrial electronics. Glen holds a Master of Science degree (with distinction) from the University of Bolton in the UK, a CID certification in circuit board design from IPC Designers Council, and is an authorized Microchip Design Partner. He is also active as a senior member of both IEEE and ISA and volunteers as a judge in the Niagara Regional Science and Engineering Fair. When not messing about in the lab, he can be found at the bottom of the nearest lake, stream, ocean, or mud puddle enjoying his role as licensed PADI open water SCUBA Instructor attempting to introduce student to the joys of the underwater world.

Mihai Albu, Ph.D.
Mihai has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Leipzig and Max Planck Institute of Evolutionary Anthropology. He has 16 years of working experience in both academic and industrial environments. He has been teaching for 4 years at ICET in Centennial College and he is a Senior Researcher at CCBR, University of Toronto. At ARIC, he participates as a Principal Investigator, conducting software development (data visualization, web development, physical activities tracking) and research activities with partners like DMTI, DataAppeal, NexJ and BullyBuddies.

Mihail Plesca, Ph.D.
Dr. Plesca has over 20 years of experience in design, research, development and testing of solar energy engineering systems. He holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Moscow State University of Civil Engineering and a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering (Heat and Gas Supply and Ventilation Systems) from the Technical University of Moldova. His Ph.D. thesis has been focused on the development of techniques for design and optimization of solar thermal heating systems coupled with heat pumps. Dr. Plesca has authored/coauthored over 90 publications including book chapters, research journal/conference papers, national codes in construction, research reports and one patent (on flat-plate solar air collector). His research interests include: renewable energy research and development; solar buildings and systems simulation; hybrid solar/wind systems; modeling, design and optimization of solar thermal engineering systems coupled with heat pumps; solar flat plate water and air collectors; and energy efficient and net-zero. He previously taught undergraduate and graduate engineering courses such as heat generation plants (HGP), renewable energy sources (RES), energy efficient buildings (EEB) and the fundamentals of ecology and air protection at Technical University of Moldova from 1986 to 2008. Dr. Plesca supervised and evaluated over 140 undergraduate students' graduation theses and three Master's theses in the areas of RES, EEB and HVAC. Mihail was the coordinator of research activity in the Department of Heat and Gas Supply and Ventilation, Technical University of Moldova from 1989 to 2008. During that time, he conducted research on over 20 scientific projects, as principal investigator for most. Mihail has been working with ARIC/AMAT, Centennial College since 2010 in capacities of both Co- and Principal Investigator on a number of research projects on renewable energy systems. Currently he is Principal Investigator of a research project on Adaptation and Commercialization Studies on a Building Integrated Solar Absorption Cooling/ Heating System. Dr. Plesca is a Certified Energy Manager (C.E.M.) and LEED AP BD+C accredited professional. He is a Member of American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and Association of Energy Engineers (AEE).

Patrick Gignac, B.A., M.A., M.L.S., Ph.D.
Patrick is a professor of Information and Communication Engineering Technology in the School of Engineering and Applied Science at Centennial College. He attended Queen's University (Ph.D, 1996), the University of Toronto (M.L.S., 1994, Thesis: A design of evaluative tools for bibliographic retrieval search sets in on-line public access catalogues), the University of Waterloo (M.A., 1985) and the University of Windsor (B.A., 1984). Patrick has been a professor and researcher at Centennial College since 2002. He has managed multiple externally and internally-funded research projects. He was the Project Manager at Ovid Technologies in New York, NY where he was responsible for product feature design and specification, as well as lead on portal integration of content into EMRs (electronic medical records). He was a Software Design Specialist, Product Marketing at Geac Computers Inc. where he wrote design requirements and functional specifications for server and client applications and was the representative for the (NISO) Z39.50 Implementers Group. He has worked as a consultant at Open Text Corporation – where he customized business enterprise solution software product (LiveLink) for clients. Patrick has taught courses on research methods in health studies and is involved in ISO and NISO information retrieval standards development groups. He has been the project manager for research projects such as Ideas@Work, INCAM Complimentary and AlliedMedicine Outcomes database, PEPTalk (public health information portal). He is the Sector Lead for Centennial College in health research.

Shahin Sanayei Lotfabadi, M.Sc.
Shahin received his B.Eng. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering, and his M.Sc. degree in Computer Systems Engineering from the Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 1998 and 2011 respectively. From 1998 to 2009, he worked as a design consultant for various companies such as IBM Corp, Honeywell Corp and MKS Instruments Inc., designing and developing Application Specific Integrated Circuits and Field Programmable Gate Arrays. He joined Centennial College in January of 2010 and has been working as a professor at the School of Engineering Technology and Applied Science and as a principal investigator at the Applied Research and Innovation Centre.

Bohdan Ruzycky, Professor
Bohdan is currently a professor of Digital Animation and Game Art & Design and the Acting Program Coordinator of the School of Communications, Media and Design. He studied a Graphic Design at Sheridan College/York University (B.Des., 1999-2002) and Computer Animation at Sheridan College (2003). He has as principal investigator at Spongelab Interactive, Bitebank Websites Inc. and as 3D Generalist at InVivo Communications and DHC Marketing.

Silvija Stefanovic, Ph.D.
Dr. Silvija Stefanovic obtained her Ph.D. at the University of Toronto in the area of Environmental Soil Chemistry. She is presently a lecturer at the University of Toronto at Scarborough and she is also a contract faculty at Centennial College, SETAS, ABES. Dr. Stefanovic is teaching courses in environmental science and bio and the organic chemistry field. Dr. Stefanovic has a great passion for soil chemistry and environmental contamination and she feels it is an honour to pass on her love for the environment to her students.

Gregory Chungath, Principal Investigator at ARIC
Gregory has experience in software development/QA/module leader at Wipro Technologies in India and Poland and the Defense Research Development Lab, India. He is a professor and researcher at Centennial College, the RCC Institute of Technology, the Caledonian College Of Engineering, Muscat-Oman and the Federal Institute of Science and Technology. He is currently working as Principal Investigator at ARIC and leading major customer research projects (video chat app, 3D scanner, among others). He is working on RF Energy harvesting research projects as a part of his Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Ryerson University.

Carmen Branje, Ph.D.
As a User Experience Consultant at CIBC, Carmen has designed banking services interfaces through collaboration with business analysts and technologists; created wireframe documents and working prototypes; conducted usability studies and subsequent analysis; and observed users performing everyday tasks to better understand how proposed software changes would affect them and to ensure optimal designs. He received his Ph.D. in Human Factors Engineering from the University of Toronto, as well as a M.M.Sc. in Management of Technology and Innovation and a B.Sc. in Computer Science from Ryerson University. He is currently an instructor at Ryerson University where he teaches Introduction to Web Presentation which includes Photoshop, Dreamweaver, FTP, HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, Flash and Wordpress. He has also worked as a professor at Centennial College where he taught Game Programming II and Practical Game Design. He is the Principal Investigator of a NSERC-funded research program. In collaboration with ARIC, he is working to develop an augmented reality game for mobile scooter users.

Frank Levstek, M.A.Sc.
Frank completed his M.A.Sc. from Ryerson University. He has executed projects with multiple industry partners including Toronto Hydro, Aveda, Clear Blue Technologies, and Solana Networks. He has worked closely with industry partners in the energy sector to optimize and test green technologies. Utilizing the resources of the Centennial College, Frank has successfully integrated both student and industry interaction. His expertise of electrical, communication, and analytics have been critical to product development and testing.

Pedram Faghihi, M.Sc.
Pedram Faghihi, a part-time Professor at Centennial College, holds a M.Sc. in Engineering, Hon. CPD in Computer Programming and Analysis, and over 10 years academic experience undergraduate Engineering and corporate IT training. He has been actively involved in the critical projects and activities within variety of industries, including Telecommunications, Insurance, retail and also Academic training for Ontario colleges. He is a pioneer and founder of advanced Software Testing Automation curriculum, and Mobile Application development and Testing (CE).

Andrés Lombo, Ph.D.
Andrés is the Principal investigator with ARIC where he is working on a project title “Integrated Multimedia Tracking Systems for Elders and Other Sensible Communities and Businesses.” Its first phase (2013) has been finished; it involved the system design and standardization of the solution; the second phase (2014) includes a Monitoring Center and a Mobile Application design to have an all-platform solution and worldwide coverage of the product for the company that is sponsoring the project. Andrés is also a Part-time professor in Electronics with ICET-SETAS. He has a Ph.D. (University of South Florida), Ms.C. in Electrical Engineering and B.Sc in Electronics Engineering. He has experience in Systems Integration and Micro and Nano Fabrication processes. He has worked as Research Fellow with University of Toronto, and as Postdoctoral Fellow with the University of Quebec at Montreal (UQAM).

Kolarith (Max) Khieu, C.E.T.
Born and raised in Cambodia, Kolarith came to Canada in 2005 through sponsorship. With no time to lose, he jumped in the Centennial College in Engineering Technology program. His major was Electro-mechanical Engineering Technologist. He graduated with honours in 2008. Immediately after graduation, he was hired to work on the Progress campus as a laboratory technologist. He looked after all lab equipment and provided technical support to faculty and students. In the same year, he was accepted to Yorkville University to pursue a degree in electronics and graduated with distinction in 2011. In 2010, he began his teaching career with the Continuing Education department, and a year later with School of Engineering Technology and Applied Science where he still works today. In 2012, he was offered a position as Industrial Electro-mechanical Technologist by Autoliv Electronic Canada Inc. Autoliv is a global company; they specialize in automotive safety devices such as airbags, seatbelts, collision sensors, etc. His main role is to keep machines running smoothly and efficiently. In 2013, he worked with ARIC as Principle Investigator. He lead a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) funded project. He has been a member of the Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists (OACETT) since 2006. He holds the title of Certified Engineering Technologist (CET).

Don Jayasinghe, GIS Specialist
As the GIS Specialist and Data Analyst of the National Diabetes Trust Business Operations Team, Don is  responsible for analyzing and processing spatial and demographic data, applying problem-solving skills to project challenges and recognizing opportunities for process improvement. Don was GIS Specialist, GIS Technician and Project Lead at DMTI Spatial, where, among many other important achievements, he provided technical expertise and participated in the completion of mapping projects including data acquisition, data editing, analysis, mapping, and creation of cartographic products. Through DMTI Spatial, Don collaborated with ARIC on a CONII-funded project focused on territorial analysis. He also worked as Product Manager Chemical Industries Colombo Ltd. Don has been a part-time instructor at Centennial College where he has taught Introduction to GIS courses since 2010. He studied Geographic Information Technology at Ryerson University, received a post-graduate diploma in Environmental Technology from Centennial College, studied to be a GIS Application Specialist at Sir Sandford Fleming College, ON and received his B.Sc. Hons. in Agriculture from the University Of Peradeniya in Sri Lanka.