Attend FashionTech Toronto on

April 24, 2019

Join us for the next edition of FashionTech Toronto which will host a global panel discussion about the emerging international fashion-tech industry and Toronto’s place in it. Joining us will be panelists from London, New York, and Toronto, all with unique perspectives on how this emerging industry is set to reshape fashion and retail.



Heather Pickard | Dean, Fashion Business School, London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London

Heather Pickard is the Dean for the Fashion Business School, London College of Fashion (LCF), University of the Arts London (UAL). UAL is Europe’s largest art and design university comprised of six Colleges and recently ranked #2 in the world for Art and Design by QS.  LCF is a world leader in fashion design, media and business education.  It has been nurturing creative talent for over a century including J.W. Anderson and Jimmy Choo.  LCF’s Centre for Fashion Enterprise (CFE) is London’s pioneering fashion incubator and is excited about partnering with Fashion Tech.  Working with the next generation of iconic design innovators, CFE fast tracks designers into businesses.  Successes include Erdem, Mary Katrantzou and Craig Green.

Heather has been involved with the fashion industry for numerous years, having worked at Top Shop in the role of Senior Merchandiser and as a Buying and Merchandising controller at Laura Ashley, Sock Shop and River Island before her career changed direction when she joined UAL. Her teaching across degree programs draws on her experience of Supply Chain and Buying and Merchandising and her current role utilises management skills acquired in industry. She is interested in exploring retention and achievement of students and the careers of future fashion graduates. The latter draws on her interest in technology and its interface with creativity in a business context.  People are the focus of connectivity – we must never lose touch with the human level and how empowering the combination of technology and people can be across education, employability and entrepreneurship.


Hailey Coleman | Program Manager, Inbound Retail at Shopify

Hailey Coleman discovered her entrepreneurial passion in university when she hobbled home barefoot after a night out in heels and decided to create and launch Damn Heels, which was featured on the 5th season premiere of Dragons' Den with a deal. Hailey has since channeled that entrepreneurial drive into her various positions at Shopify, crossing marketing and partnership functions that help business owners grow and scale in the changing face of retail. As one of the world's largest commerce platforms, Hailey has championed Shopify's retail position from Canada, exporting product solutions to key international markets across the United States and Western Europe. Now as a Retail Partnerships Manager, Hailey focuses on unlocking new opportunities for small to enterprise level businesses exploring retail to find the right strategy that suits their business. 


Elise Gasbarrino | Editor-in-chief & Founder of STYLE Canada

With a love for fashion since childhood, Elise Gasbarrino joined the iconic British luxury brand Burberry in 2013, where she is now Brand Manager overseeing the Northeast, Midwest and Canada wholesale businesses. Elise is passionate about supporting initiatives that support women. Her entrepreneurial spirit has led her to invest in female-founded start-up organizations, including KENT Woman, a natural organic silk under-apparel brand; and STYLE CANADA, an online lifestyle space for modern Canadians. 

While pursuing her career in fashion in her early twenties, Elise was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.  Elise envisioned a way to connect with other young women facing similar challenges her vision transpired into Pink Pearl Foundation. To date, her organization has touched the lives of more than 1,500 young women and has raised nearly half a million dollars. In 2018 she received the Lazaridis School Alumni Award for Community Leadership. In 2017, Cancer Care Ontario recognized Elise’s exemplary and compassionate work in cancer care by honouring her with the Human Touch Award. In 2016, Elise received the Burberry Icon Award for her demonstrative work in social responsibility. Elise resides in New York City and returns home often to the Niagara Region to spend quality time with her family and close friends. 


Soha Yasrebi | Analyst at OMERS Ventures

Soha focuses on opportunities in AI, eCommerce, AutoTech, and Cybersecurity space. At OMERS, Soha works closely with portfolio companies developing core AI technologies and looks for new investment opportunities that leverage machine learning and AI across a variety of industries including retail. Most recently, Soha was named to the NY Fashion Tech Lab expert network.

 Prior to joining OMERS, Soha was a Senior Consultant within Deloitte's Technology Consulting practice, specializing in cloud-based solutions and managing IT workstreams for large-scale ERP implementations.

 Soha has a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering with a Minor in Business and Entrepreneurship from University of Toronto.




Ashley Barby | Founder of FashionTech Toronto, Chief Operating Officer of Specsy

Ashley Barby is the Founder of FashionTech Toronto and COO of custom 3D printed eyewear manufacturer Specsy. With a decade of experience across fashion, retail, and tech, her work has exposed her to new and emerging fashion and technology markets. From innovating with luxury retailers in Canada, to launching industry disruptive retail technologies in the United States, to establishing fashion innovation partnerships in the UK.

Ashley sits on the advisory board for Humber College’s fashion management program, and is a business and entrepreneurship mentor with Futurpreneur Canada. Previously, Ashley was the founder and CEO of luxury consignment ecommerce company ShopLux, and held a series of leadership roles with luxury retailer Holt Renfrew.



Registration & FashionTech Startup Expo: 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm

Panel Discussion: 6:30 pm - 7:45 pm

Networking & FashionTech Startup Expo: 7:45 pm - 8:30 pm 

Ticket includes access to the FashionTech Startup Expo.


Date: Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Time: 5:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Location: Design Exchange, 234 Bay Street