Topic: Erasing Barriers: Making the Future of Work Accessible

Speaker: Darrell Bowden, Varun Chandak, Simone Lima, Tim Rose, Maayan Ziv

Date & Time: October 18, 2022 5-6PM EST

Location: This event is available virtually via livestream. Rotman events will send all registrants the link for the livestream before the event.

Please note: The event will include ASL interpretation and will include real-time captioning.

Co-hosted by Access to Success: PLEASE REGISTER HERE FOR THIS EVENT.

Synopsis: The future of work is changing, and forward-looking leaders are using this moment to rethink how their teams and workplaces can be more inclusive and accessible. Nearly one-quarter of Canadians live with some form of disability, and for employers seeking the most talented and diverse teams it’s increasingly essential to ensure policies and environments that welcome people with disabilities.

This session will explore the importance of representation of people with disabilities in leadership and how to build the talent pipeline. Expert speakers will discuss how pandemic-era flexible working arrangements are being adapted to support on-going accessibility initiatives and they will provide practical examples of how businesses are adapting their workplaces.

For professionals in the corporate, government, and not-for-profit sectors interested in making the future of work accessible for all, this session will provide vital and timely insights and help you frame important conversations.

About Our Speakers: 

Darrell Bowden (he/him), Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, Rotman School of Management 

Darrell Bowden is the new Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) at the Rotman School of Management. With more than 25 years of social justice, EDI, human rights and career development experience in post-secondary environments, he leads the School’s EDI strategy and oversees all efforts that help create a more diverse and welcoming community for students, staff and faculty. Previously, he held the position of Executive Director of the Office of the Vice President/Vice Provost Equity, Diversity and Inclusion at Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU). With his team, he managed the White Privilege Conference Global – Toronto in 2018 and for the last 15 years, Darrell was also the mastermind behind the Viola Desmond Day Ceremony at TMU which recognizes and celebrates the success of Black Women in the TMU community.

Darrell completed his Master’s in Education in Critical Anti-Racism Studies in Education at OISE at the University of Toronto in 2007. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Dalhousie University and an Honours Diploma in Career and Work Counselling from George Brown College.

Varun Chandak (he/him), Founder, Access to Success

Varun Chandak is the founder of Access to Success, a Toronto-based non-profit that supports the development of future leaders with disabilities and assistive tech. He started the organization as an MBA student at the Rotman School of Management, and has since grown it to launch $90,000 in annual scholarships as well as Canada’s first accelerator for accessibility startups. His work stems from his lived experience with Erb’s palsy and hearing loss.

Varun lives in Toronto with his wife and his hyperactive goldendoodle, Dash

Simone Lima (she/her), Senior Product Manager, Proposify; Rotman MBA 2022

Simone Lima graduated from her Rotman MBA in 2022, and was a CDL, Forté, and GATE fellow during that time. She held a Bachelor of International Relations and a Post-Graduate degree in Innovation and Strategic Design before starting her MBA journey. She started her career at the United Nations, working with UNAIDS, UN Women, and at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. Later, her curiosity and passion for solving complex problems with technology led her into the product management path, where she works on building digital products that solve human challenges in an accessible way.

Simone is passionate about the potential we have for solving complex problems with technology, live music, comedy specials, politics, practicing yoga, and all things cats and dogs.

Tim Rose (he/him), Senior Consultant, Accessibility, Client Experience team, CIBC

Tim Rose is an activist, writer and business leader who is lucky enough to be born with cerebral palsy. Raised to push the envelope, Tim has had the privilege of living and working on three continents providing him with a global perspective on the importance of accessibility and a disability positive mindset.

Tim has been a proud member of team CIBC since 2017, holding a variety of roles at the bank including in compliance, inclusion and now client experience.

Maayan Ziv (she/her), Founder & CEO, AccessNow

Maayan Ziv is an activist, photographer and entrepreneur. In 2015, she launched AccessNow, a mobile app and website that collects and shares information about the accessibility status of places worldwide. What began as a response to her frustration when trying to navigate inaccessible places, AccessNow soon grew to become a mission-oriented social start-up. As CEO of AccessNow, Maayan has created a powerful shift in thinking about the importance of accessibility in our world, from accessible technologies to infrastructure, public policy, media and communications. To date, AccessNow has shared accessibility information in over 35 countries.

Maayan, and her work with AccessNow, have received numerous awards including: Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 (2021), the Governor General’s Innovation Award (2020), WXN Top 100 Canada’s Most Powerful Women (2018), City of Toronto Access Award (2016), David C. Onley Leadership in Accessibility Award (2016).

For more information: If you are attending the event in person, and require accommodations, please email Megan Murphy at and we will work with you to make appropriate arrangements.

See more events