Canada National Leader, Total Workplace • Canada
As Managing Director, Consulting Services, Canada, Ms. Sannella specializes in design management, workplace strategy, occupancy planning, scenario development, project management and holistic building/land solutions. Her combined background in architecture, urban design, interior design, construction, development, and project management helps provide clients with strategies that are well- grounded through all phases of the real estate cycle.
Samantha’s focus is providing real estate solutions that maximize the experience per square foot of the occupant while aligning with the organization’s business objectives and culture. Her group focuses on real estate and built environment strategies that foster productivity, increase effectiveness, mitigate cost and reduce risk to help clients solve the complex challenges encountered at the intersection of real estate and business. Services include Design Advisory, Workplace Strategy, Occupancy Planning, Site Selection, Employee Engagement and Change Management, Facility Programming, Building Repositioning Strategy, Portfolio Optimization and Land Use Strategies.
Ms. Sannella was formerly a Studio Director and Workplace Strategy Expert at Stantec Toronto, the former President and CEO of the Design Exchange, Canada’s Design Museum and Centre for the Promotion of Design and a former professor of Interior Design at Ryerson University. Ms. Sannella was a practice leader for HOK Consulting Canada. As part of her career, Ms. Sannella has been instrumental to organizations through fundraising, public relations, and community involvement.
Ms. Sannella is passionate about Universal and Sustainable Design and teaches audiences about the critical connections between design and the economy, environment, and quality of life. In 2006, Ms. Sannella was named one of the top 10 most inspiring women in Canada and in March 2011, she was named Woman of the Month by Women's Post Magazine. In 2007, she was honoured by Ryerson University for her work within the design community. She taught part-time at Ryerson for 15 years.
Ms. Sannella is also the founder of Urban Retreat Homes which focused on the design of single-family homes as well as the design/build of custom luxury homes in Ontario. Over the course of her career, Ms. Sannella extended her expertise in residential design and construction to the multi-residential market by managing the development of condominium projects in Toronto and Barrie.
Ms. Sannella is a columnist for Reno and Decor Magazine and editor of Ontario Design, a trade publication for professional architects, designers, and contractors.
In 2006, Samantha was named one of the top 10 most inspiring women in Canada and, in 2011, she was named Woman of the Month by Women's Post Magazine. In 2007, Samantha was honoured by Ryerson University, where she taught part time for 15 years, for her work within the design community. As well, Samantha founded Urban Retreat Homes, which focused on the development of single-family homes and the design-build of custom luxury homes in Ontario. Samantha has also managed condominium development projects in Toronto and Barrie, Ontario
Recent Speaking Engagements
2022 Vancouver Real Estate Forum, Panelist and Featured Speaker
2022 REIC Keynote Speaker
2021 Buildings Show, ROI of Wellness Initiatives in the Workplace
2021 PEO Workshops, Culture in the Workplace
2021 Urban Development Institute, The City Post-COVID
2021 MacKay Forums, Toronto & Vancouver, Workplace of the Future
2021 Q100 Montreal, Workplace of the Future
2020 CoreNet Seminar, Panelist, Future of Workplace
2020 KBC Kitchen and Bath Industry Post-COVID, Moderator
2020 Buildings Show, The Holistic Workplace, Speaker
2017 – 2019 BILD, Renovation and New Build Awards, Emcee/Host
2017 GTA and GTAA Home Show, Increasing your RE Value
2014, 2015 and 2016 Interior Design Show, Residential Real Estate Value
2014 GTA National Home Show Featured Speaker
2013 Interior Design Show and Toronto Home Show, Raising your Property Value
2011 University of Guadalajara, Design Week, Keynote Speaker
Workshop Leader, Conference Board of Canada – Innovation and Design
Speaker, Conference Board of Canada, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010.
Speaker, National Conference for the Society for Marketing of Professional Services (SMPS), Phoenix, AZ
Keynote Speaker, Marketing Summit. American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) & the Society for Marketing of Professional Services (SMPS), Los Angeles, CA.
Keynote Speaker, GSA Realty Leadership Forum, Baltimore, Maryland.
Speaker, Public Works Toronto, Integrated Design.
Speaker, Ministry of Attorney General's Office Management Forum, Toronto.
Speaker (multiple years) IFMA and NACORE
Publications and Television
At Cushman and Wakefield, Samantha has authored numerous whitepapers regarding the post-COVID workplace, is a frequent guest on webinars and was recently a guest on the Steve Paikin show and CBC’s The National. She was recently featured in the Globe and Mail regarding the Hybrid Workplace Trend as well as the City Space podcast regarding the future of cities.
- “Just Because You Can, Doesn’t Mean You Should” – Workplace Design
- “The Elephant in the Room” - Territory in the Workplace.
- Editor, Ontario Design (numerous years)
- Regular Columnist for Reno and Décor Magazine (over 50 articles written)
- Featured in numerous periodicals, such as Canadian Kitchen and Bath Design, the Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail and Women’s Post.
- Hiatus, Essay “Designers as Superheroes” (Published in English and Spanish)
- OURTOPIAS, Introduction
- The Art of , Introduction
- Cool 60s Design, Introduction (Published in French and English)
- Design in Canada, Introduction (Second Edition)
- Treasure Channel, “Modern Design Series” – Multiple Episodes
- Breakfast Television, “Creating a Dream Home’
- Author of 'Amusing Workspaces and Workplaces, What's in Our Future?” adapted for the cover story of Today's Facility Manager Magazine
STRATEGIC VISIONING + WORKPLACE STRATEGY
BC Housing, Vancouver
Foresters Financial, Toronto
United Way, Toronto
United Way, Edmonton
USAA, San Antonio
Blue Cross, Houston
Nathan Phillips Square Revitalization, Toronto
TD Bank – Various Projects
CIBC - Various Projects
Conference Board of Canada
Spark Power Group, Oakville
United Way, Toronto & Edmonton
Japan Foundation, Toronto
Aventis Headquarters, Frankfurt
Nortel Headquarters, Brampton
Nortel, Raleigh, North Carolina
Nortel, Richardson, Texas
GSA, Washington, DC
HIGH TECH / LABORATORY
Pantex, Weapons Evaluation Testing Facility, Amarillo
Sandia National Labs, Joint Computational Evaluation Facility, Albuquerque
Kodak Wafer Fabrication Facility, Rochester
FBI Forensic Laboratories, Quantico, Virginia
MRO Hangar, Finance Prince Edward Island
National Institute of Standards and Technology
Kodak, Film Coating System Manufacturing, Rochester
Kodak, Medical Film Manufacturing, Rochester
Cummings Engines, New Diesel Engine Manufacturing Line, Columbus
General Motors, Detroit Michigan
Ontario Energy Board, Toronto
Spark Power, Oakville
MichCon / DTE Energy
MASTER PLANNING + ARCHITECTURAL PROGRAMMING / DESIGN, SITE SELECTION
Toyota HQ + Tech Centre, Toronto
Aventis Headquarters, Frankfurt
NCAA Headquarters, Indianapolis
Amex Call Centre, Minneapolis
Sun Microsystems, San Jose
Novell Campus, San Jose
US Consulate, Site Selection, Toronto
US Department of State, National Strategy, Canada
City of Toronto Streetscape Furniture
Canada Lands Corporation, Port Credit Marina Re-Development
US National Archives, Bethesda, Maryland + Washington, DC, Facility Expansion
Design Exchange, Strategic Plan, Toronto
National Institute of Standards and Technology
City of Toronto, AODA Improvements
PORTS Toronto, Interior Improvements
CONDOMINIUM / RESIDENTIAL
Confidential Client, PEI
HV Mixed-Use/Condominiums, Barrie
HV Mixed-Use/Condominiums, Toronto
Low Rise Residential, Various Locations
Seneca Collage – Markham Campus
George Brown – Casa Loma Campus
Marshall McLuhan Centre, U of Toronto
University of Calgary, Information and Communication Technology Building
Houston Community College, Medical Education Building, Houston, Texas
Elementary School, 9th Ward, New Orleans, Louisiana
Ford Glass University, New Facility Program
McKenzie Vaughan Hospital, Toronto
Toronto Rehab Institute
Niagara Health, Niagara//St. Catherines
Texas Department for Mental Health
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto]
- 2022-2023, Quantic School of Business and Technology, Executive MBA
- 1993-1991, University of Houston, Master of Architecture
- 1991-1990, Louisiana State University, Graduate School of Architecture
- 1990-1986, Louisiana Tech University, Bachelor Interior Design, Minor Sociology, Magna Cum Laude, Graduating Honor: Designer of the Year
- 1986-1984, Southern Arkansas University, School of Speech and Performing Art
Samantha has participated in several boards and community organizations including the Nathan Phillips Square Revitalization, Ontario Place Revitalization, Humber College Industrial Design Program Advisory Board, Sheridan Collage Interior Design Advisory Board, George Brown College Curriculum Advisory and Kinder Canada.