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Marc Nantel is the Vice-President of Research, Innovation & Strategic Enterprises, leading the Research & Innovation and Government Relations divisions of the college. He is also the President of the Niagara College Learning Enterprises Corporation (NCLEC), which includes overseeing the operations and strategic direction for the Niagara College Teaching Winery, Teaching Brewery, Teaching Cidery, Teaching Distillery, and Cannabis Institute. Marc joined Niagara College in July 2011; prior to that, he had been involved with the college as a Board Member (2006-11) and as the Project Manager/Director from the Ontario Centres of Excellence. As such, he helped introduce the Photonics programs at the Welland Campus. Marc is a Physics graduate from McGill University (BSc 1987, MSc 1990) and from the Institut National pour la Recherche Scientifique – Energie et Matériaux (PhD 1994). He spent four postdoc years in France and at the University of Michigan, pursuing ever shorter laser-produced visible and x-ray pulses and their applications; he was an Adjunct Professor of Physics at the University of Toronto from 1998 to 2008. He has published more than 90 papers and given more than 200 academic and industrial presentations. Marc is a Senior Member of SPIE, the International Society for Optics and Photonics.

Research, Innovation & Strategic Enterprises
Daniel J. Patterson Campus

Krystle Grimaldi is responsible for the day-to-day operations and internal processes, including administration and project management, of Niagara College’s Research & Innovation Division. Krystle’s experience with the division also includes being the Research Project Manager for the Agriculture & Environment portfolio. Prior to undertaking her role as project manager, Krystle started with the department as Co-ordinator of the Niagara Environmental Corps organizing community events and educational outreach initiatives in elementary, secondary and post-secondary schools. Krystle brings to her role experience working with Niagara organizations through her involvement with Niagara Sustainability Initiative where she assists organizations in improving both their environmental and economic performance through carbon management. Krystle holds an undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences from Brock University and a post-graduate certificate in Environmental Management and Assessment from Niagara College.

Research & Innovation
Daniel J. Patterson Campus


Carolyn Mullin is the Director – Strategic Partnerships, with the Research & Innovation division. She joined Research & Innovation in 2012 after several years in the communications industry, including many as a newspaper reporter and editor, and an award-winning freelance writer for publications across the country. More recently, Carolyn has worked as a communications specialist in the non-profit and government sector, based in the Niagara region. As part of the Research team, she is responsible for funding proposal development, business development operations, and the creation and dissemination of research-based communications, in all relevant forms. She also oversees the two multi-institution networks led by Niagara College – the Southern Ontario Network for Advanced Manufacturing Innovation (SONAMI), and the Greenhouse Technology Network (GTN). Carolyn is a graduate of the Journalism program at Niagara College, and holds an Honours BA and an MA, both in English, from Brock University.

Director –
Strategic Partnerships
Welland Campus

Our Networks

Kithio Mwanzia is the Network Manager for the Southern Ontario Network for Advanced Manufacturing Innovation (SONAMI), a Niagara College-led network of higher education institutions that pool their resources to provide innovation and technology to small-and medium-sized companies. In his role, Kithio is responsible for the overall recruitment and outreach activities of the network, as well as the recruitment of three new academic institutions to the network during the next five years.

Kithio has spent a number of years in Niagara working on governance issues with the Thorold Chamber of Commerce and later the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce (GNCC). He was also interim CEO at GNCC for a few months before taking the role of President & CEO of the Guelph Chamber of Commerce. He holds a Bachelor and a Master of Arts in Political Science from Brock University, and he has earned his Certificate in Public Governance from the Institute on Governance.


Network Manager, SONAMI,
Welland Campus

Rita Sterne, PhD, is the Project Manager for the Greenhouse Technology Network (GTN), a Niagara College-led consortium of three institutions supporting the research and development needs of the greenhouse industry through applied research projects. In her role, Rita is responsible for managing a range of projects and related activities to grow the GTN, through outreach to business and liaison with partner institutions.

Rita brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in both the business community and the academic and research areas of the greenhouse industry. She holds a PhD in Management, as well as an MBA in Hospitality and Tourism, both from the University of Guelph. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship with Guelph’s School of Engineering in a project on “Value Creation Using Robots in the Ontario Vegetable Greenhouse Industry.”

Project Manager, GTN,
Welland Campus

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  • Niagara College Welland Campus

    100 Niagara College Boulevard
    Welland, ON L3C 7L3
    905 735-2211 ext. 7180

    • Walker Advanced Manufacturing Innovation Centre
  • NOTL-Campus

    Daniel J. Patterson Campus in Niagara-on-the-Lake

    135 Taylor Road
    Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON L0S 1J0
    905 641-2252 ext. 4277

    • Research & Innovation Administrative Offices – N019 (lower ground floor)
    • Food & Beverage Innovation Centre – Marotta Family Innovation Centre (3rd floor)



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Research & Innovation