Past Event

IIDEXCanada 2015 - Cross-Border Seminar
When: Thursday, December 3, 2015 - 09:00 - Thursday, December 3, 2015 - 10:00

Cross-Border Opportunities

Code    [T08]
Time    Thursday, December 3, 2015, 09:00 - 10:00
Level:    Intermediate
CEU:    0.1
Fee:    $40
Category:  Architecture, Business, Facility Management, Interior Design

The panel will provide a case study of Mr. John-Paul Smith, a Canadian citizen who works in the Architecture field and is relocating to the U.S. for a job opportunity.  We will address the variety of issues he will need to consider such as immigration, tax, banking and insurance.  Our panel will provide “dos and don’ts” pertaining to his entry to the U.S.


Philip Davidovits
Chairman-Peel-Halton-Niagara Region, American Chamber of Commerce in Canada (AmCham)

As Chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in Canada, Peel-Halton-Niagara Chapter, Philip will discuss cross border opportunities in the Construction industry.

Philip Davidovits is a successful entrepreneur with more than 30 years of experience in the business world, having been involved in trade and manufacturing operations both nationally and internationally.

A thought leader in the area of reshoring, Philip has guided numerous North American companies on how to retain local production while simultaneously increasing exports, retaining and creating jobs, and strengthening the economy. He also works closely with many North American companies to successfully market their products across the globe.

Philip is managing director of Sayumo Inc., which supplies a wide range of consumer products and services to major retailers in North America. Always one to walk the talk, he has reshored many unique and innovative products to North America.

As chairman of the Peel Halton Niagara Chapter of the American Chamber of Commerce in Canada, Philip is responsible for helping members be successful in cross-border trading. He is always impressed by how much members want to get involved and help each other succeed.

A proud father of three children and three adorable grandchildren, Philip is based in Toronto but travels extensively for business and pleasure.

Lauren J. Schellinger
Commercial Relationship Manager, Vice President, M&T Bank

Lauren joined M&T in 2007 and has spent the majority of her career working with cross-border businesses. For several years, Lauren assisted Canadian headquartered companies structure their banking to transact in the US efficiently. Currently, Lauren works with middle market businesses in both Western New York and the Greater Toronto Area, providing customized cross-border payment and capital financing solutions.

Competencies include: commercial finance, business development and retention, treasury and cash management (both US and Canada), international trade finance, foreign exchange hedging, risk management, and investment management.

Lauren holds a Bachelor of Arts from Colgate University and a Certified Treasury Professional (CTP) designation. Lauren is currently pursuing her Master of Business Administration at the University at Buffalo.

Judi Smith, B.A., CRM, CIP
Account Executive, Commercial Lines, Aon Burlington

Over 15 years of consistent achievement in the insurance industry plus 15 years as a business owner of a wholesale company with retail outlets Judi Smith a unique perspective when it comes to helping business owners protect their people and property against complications associated with risk. Many of Judi's clients send product and people across International borders and her expertise in the area of risk management and insurance advisory practice helps her clients focus to protect their interests.

Concentrating in the areas of risk most likely to become a threat, identifying priorities and offer options to guide their insurance decisions. Judi's educational background includes a BA from York University, A Certified Risk Management Designation from McMaster University and her Chartered Insurance Professional Designation from the Insurance Institute of Toronto.

Rosanna Berardi, Esq
Managing Partner

In June of 2005, Rosanna Berardi, Esq. founded Berardi Immigration Law, a full-service immigration law firm.  Ms. Berardi has a unique combination of government, university and corporate experience that provides her with a broad perspective of the immigration landscape.

Ms. Berardi’s immigration career began in 1993. She attended the legacy Immigration & Naturalization Service (“INS”) Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, Georgia, and then worked as an Immigration Inspector at the Peace Bridge while attending law school at the State University of New York at Buffalo. Ms. Berardi was then promoted to the position of Legal Intern at the legacy INS’s District Office, where she performed legal research and prepared legal memoranda on various immigration issues. Upon her graduation from law school in 1997, Ms. Berardi was hired as a full-time Immigration Trial Attorney at the New York City Office through the Attorney General’s Honor Program, which placed only 25 law graduates with the INS.  In this position, Ms. Berardi gained extensive litigation experience by representing the INS in Immigration Court on a daily basis.  She prepared and presented over 400 cases in immigration court before 31 different immigration judges.

In 1998, Ms. Berardi returned to Buffalo, New York and was hired by the University at Buffalo’s International Student & Scholar Services Office as Immigration Counsel.  In this role, she was responsible for preparing and submitting all employment-based immigration petitions including OPT, CPT, TN, H-1B and green card petitions as well as Outstanding Researcher/Professor and Special Handling immigrant petitions. Ms. Berardi was the legal point-of-contact for all of the University’s immigration needs.  She delivered educational seminars and workshops to the University, and she created informative documents for the office’s website.  She routinely met with the University’s faculty, staff, and students to identify and develop their U.S. immigration strategies.

Ms. Berardi entered private law practice in 1998 when she joined Buffalo’s largest law firm as an Immigration Associate.  She spent six years there and gained extensive experience working with multi-national companies in connection with B-1, H-1B, L-1, TN and O-1, and green card transfers to the U.S.  She also represented Canadian corporations expanding or relocating to the U.S. Ms. Berardi was a frequent speaker at SUNY personnel conferences, client seminars and corporate seminars. 

Elena Hanson, MsT, CPA (IL)
Director, Hanson Crossborder Tax Inc.

Elena Hanson is a US CPA and the owner of a tax practice which focuses exclusively on cross-border taxation.  Her specialty is to provide fully integrated tax services that can help with every aspect of tax preparation and planning for Canadian residents, investors and businesses having a US presence and to assist American individuals and businesses with their relocation and expansion to Canada.

She believes that good tax planning and maintenance is the way for taxpayers to keep their hard earned income and maximize profits. There are too many individuals and multinational businesses which discover the harsh consequences of double taxation and mismatch in the US and Canadian tax systems, much of which could have been prevented with prior tax planning and elections.


supported by
AmCham Peel-Halton-Niagara