Our Team

The Institute for Sustainable Finance is led by a team of Canada’s foremost experts and academics in areas of business and sustainable finance. With passion, drive, and determination, the leadership team is committed to helping Canada become an innovator shaper.

Sean Cleary

Sean Cleary, PhD, CFA
Chair

sean.cleary@queensu.ca

Sean Cleary, BMO Professor of Finance and Founding Director of the Master of Finance program at Smith School of Business, Queen’s University. He holds a PhD. in finance from the University of Toronto, an MBA, an Institute of Corporate Directors designation, and is a CFA charterholder. He has authored 14 finance textbooks and has published more than 30 research articles, with his work having been cited nearly 3,500 times.

Sara Alvarado

Sara Alvarado, CFA, MBA
Executive Director

sara.alvarado@queensu.ca

A veteran investment professional with a focus on climate change and sustainability, Sara will help drive forward ISF’s mandate to build Canadian sustainable finance capacity. Prior to joining ISF, she was head of risk and chief anti money laundering officer (CAMLO) at Canada Infrastructure Bank, where she was responsible for building the inaugural enterprise risk management function. Previously, she worked as senior officer, infrastructure new products and special transactions at the European Investment Bank, with a mandate to catalyze private-sector investments in the EU with focus on climate change and sustainability. Sara also spent 25 years in the investment industry in Canada.

Ryan Riordan

Ryan Riordan, PhD
Director of Research

ryan.riordan@queensu.ca

Ryan Riordan is the Associate Professor & Distinguished Professor of Finance at Smith School of Business, Queen’s University. Prior to joining Smith, Ryan was an Assistant Professor of Finance at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) and an Assistant Professor at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany. His work has been published in the Journal of Financial Economics, Review of Financial Studies, and the Journal of Financial Markets among many others.

Maya Saryyeva

Maya Saryyeva, MA
Associate Director

maya.saryyeva@queensu.ca

Maya Saryyeva joined the Institute for Sustainable Finance (ISF) in December 2018 to support the implementation of the Institute’s core programs and outreach efforts. Prior to joining ISF, Maya worked in the international development sector, leading a number of United States Agency for International Development (USAID) funded governance and economic development initiatives in Eastern Europe as well as South and Central Asia. Maya is also pursuing a PhD in global development with a focus on sustainable finance. She researches the efficacy of global governance frameworks surrounding green bonds and sustainable initiatives.

Aleena Nasseem

Aleena Nasseem

Aleena recently graduated from the University of Waterloo having finished her master’s degree focusing on sustainable/international development. Coupled with her previous academic background in accounting and finance, she enjoys working in the sustainable finance space and hopes to make it her niche. She also has six years of work experience across geographies, working with various stakeholders including multi-lateral donors such as the World Bank/IFAD, various non-profits, governments, and corporate players.

Simon Martin

Simon Martin

Simon Martin holds a master’s degree in economics from the University of Toronto and an undergraduate degree in finance and economics from Dalhousie University. Prior to joining the Institute for Sustainable Finance (ISF), Simon worked at the Urban Analytics Institute where he developed price prediction models and analyzed data. Simon has a strong interest in energy markets and renewable energy sources. He loves spending time outdoors and is passionate about a clean energy future.

Andrew Hakes

Andrew Hakes

Andrew joined the Institute for Sustainable Finance as a research associate in March 2020. Prior to joining the ISF, he worked as an analyst at the Delphi Group, a consultancy focused on climate change and corporate sustainability. Andrew holds a Master of Global Affairs from the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy, where he completed a specialization in global capital markets, as well as a collaborative program in environmental studies. Additionally, Andrew has a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from the University of Western Ontario, holds a Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) FSA credential, and has completed CFA Level I.

Shuyi Hui

Shuyi Hui

Shuyi is passionate in exploring sustainable finance and developing unique solutions to complex problems with her experience in data mining and machine learning. Prior to joining ISF, Shuyi worked in the financial technology (fintech) industry, focusing on combining the practical uses of financial information with innovative technologies. Shuyi is a recent graduate of the Master of Management Analytics (MMA) program at Smith School of Business, Queen’s University, holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Toronto, and certified in Tableau, SAS Enterprise Miner, and SAS Viya. She enjoys hiking in nature and loves photography.

Shuyi Hui

Will Hamilton

William has a pure mathematics degree from Dalhousie University, and three years of experience working in radiomics and computer aided diagnosis at Toronto General Hospital. With a background in signal analysis and machine learning, he has a strong interest in the fundamentals of machine learning models, and their application in sustainable finance. William aims to improve the quality of curated datasets, with the ultimate goal of moving toward unsupervised end-to-end machine learning frameworks.