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About Us

Finding Inspiration in Every Turn

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Schedule

Time - Theme/Topic 

8:30 - 9:00 am - Registration (coffee/tea/pastries)

9:00 - 9:10 am - Opening Remarks, Land Acknowledgement & Prayer 

9:10 - 9:50 am - Navigating the Currents of Public Opinion: Leveraging Polling for Advocacy 

9:50 - 10:15 am - Ethics and Lobbying

10:15 - 10:30 am - Networking and Break 

10:30 - 11:10 am - Strategizing for Success: Crafting Your Election Advocacy 

11:10 - 11:45 am - Empowering the Next Generation of Women in Public Affairs 

11:45 - 12:25 pm - Understanding the Federal Budget Cycle: Workshop 

12:25 - 1:20 pm -  Lunch & Networking with Demonstrations on Practical Public Affairs Tools

1:20 - 1:55 pm - The Future of GR: Fireside Discussion 

1:55 - 2:00 pm - Closing Remarks 

Sessions

Navigating the Currents of Public Opinion: Leveraging Polling for Advocacy 

Featuring David Coletto, Founder, Chair & CEO, Abacus Data

In his keynote presentation, David, one of the best known and respected pollsters in Canada, will share exclusive findings on what people in Canada are thinking ahead of the 2025 election. He'll explain why it's important to know how public opinion, government policy, and politics come together, especially for those working in advocacy and government relations. He will also show how using research and data on public opinion can help create more effective strategies and campaigns for those trying to win.  After his talk, there will be a Q&A session where you can ask David questions and get more insights. This is a great chance for anyone looking to use public opinion in their work to get practical advice and learn from one of the best.

Ethics and Lobbying

Featuring Hunter Doubt, Manager of Government and Corporate Affairs for Canada with Expedia Group; Nancy Bélanger is Canada’s Commissioner of Lobbying; Dean Allison MP for the riding of Niagara West-Glanbrook

Join us for an essential panel on the ethics of lobbying in Canada where we will dive into the regulatory landscape while emphasizing the critical role of lobbying in shaping informed public policy. The focus will be on ethical lobbying practices that prioritize transparency and preventing actions that create a sense of obligation for a public office holder. Our panel of experts will offer comprehensive insights into navigating the industry’s challenges, its benefits, and actionable advice for upholding exceptional ethical standards. This discussion promises to provide a clear snapshot of the industry’s current state, its future directions, and invaluable guidance for those working in public affairs and providing valuable input on public policy.

 

Strategizing for Success: Crafting Your Election Advocacy 

Featuring Yaroslav Baran, Partner, Co-Founder, Pendulum; Carlene Variyan, Associate Vice President of Summa Strategies; Fred Delorey, Partner, NorthStar Public Affairs; Kathleen Monk, President of Monk + Associates

Join a panel of politicos for an in-depth exploration of pre-election strategy, where they will break down the key components of a successful campaign, providing practical advice for the stages before, during, and after an election. Discover strategies to capture attention in a busy landscape, ways to incorporate your ideas into influential platforms, and specific guidance tailored to the upcoming federal election in Canada. This session is your opportunity to gain the insights and skills necessary to navigate the competitive world of political campaigning and make a meaningful difference.

Empowering the Next Generation of Women in Public Affairs 

Featuring Denise Siele, Senior Advisor at Artful Strategies; Jennifer Stewart, Founder and CEO of Syntax Strategic and Co-Host and Co-Founder of The Honest Talk; Elizabeth Roscoe, Executive Vice President at Rubicon Strategy; Megan Buttle, National Digital Lead, Earnscliffe Strategies, & President of the Government Relations Institute of Canada (GRIC); with Stephanie Mitton from Beacon North Strategies as Moderator

Despite progress in women's representation, significant gender disparities persist in essential decision-making roles within the realms of politics, business, and public affairs. In this complex landscape, women are progressively exerting their influence and shaping political discourse. Our panel features women who have significantly expanded the scope of the field and contributed profoundly as experts, with impacts felt on both domestic and international levels. These leaders will discuss their paths to overcoming obstacles, navigating complex landscapes, and influencing legislative agendas. They will provide valuable insights and practical advice to inspire and empower the upcoming generation of women to fully leverage their skills and talents in this dynamic sector.

 

​Understanding the Federal Budget Cycle: Workshop 

Featuring: Tyler Meredith, MPA, BA (Hons),  Founding Partner, Meredith Boessenkool Policy Advisors; Jason Clark, National director at Insurance Bureau of Canada and Chair of Climate Proof Canada

Join us for an informative workshop and fireside chat led by Tyler Meredith, Founding Partner at Meredith Boessenkool Policy Advisors and former advisor to Canada's Prime Minister and Finance Minister. Drawing from his vast experience in contributing to six federal budgets and creating winning campaign platforms, Tyler delivers unparalleled insights.

 

This session is designed to arm public affairs professionals with the knowledge to navigate the federal budget cycle successfully. Discover key dates, insights into the government's agenda-setting, consultation phases, decision-making, and the execution of changes via the Budget Implementation Act. Additionally, receive specific guidance on making impactful engagements, submissions, and connections by hearing from Jason Clark, National Director, climate change advocacy at Insurance Bureau of Canada regarding the success of the National Flood Insurance Program.

Demonstrations on Practical Public Affairs Tools

Featuring Chris Moffatt Armes, Founder, PoliTraQ; Leslie Dickson, Publisher of the Hill Times

This interactive session is designed to enhance your efficiency, skills, and knowledge in the realm of advocacy and lobbying. Presenters will introduce you to essential tools and resources that can be seamlessly integrated into your existing toolkit, empowering you to conduct more effective and efficient lobbying efforts. Whether you're looking to refine your advocacy strategies or expand your skill set, you'll discover practical ways to elevate your work and achieve greater impact in the public affairs landscape. This is an opportunity to not only learn but to also apply these insights directly to your advocacy efforts, setting a new standard for excellence in your professional journey.

Overview of PoliTraQ 

Effective Government Relations: Strategies for Metrics and Evaluation - led by PoliTraQ founder, Chris Moffatt Armes, this talk will focus on best practices for measuring the effectiveness of your advocacy activities, examine how to develop and track Key Performance Indicators, and explore how emerging technologies can bolster your advocacy work.

Overview of Hill Times

The Hill Times' suite of publications deliver critical information for those working in public affairs in Canada. We offer news, opinion, tracking services, contact information and research, all to help you implement an effective government relations strategy and keep you ahead of the curve. We help you understand stakeholders, increase your influence and mitigate risks in the public affairs realm. Leslie Dickson, Publisher of the Hill Times will go through the package of publications that we've tailored for people working in public affairs, she'll also tell you about the benefits of each and how they are essential tools for your work.

The Future of GR: Fireside Discussion

Featuring The Honourable John Manley, P.C., O.C., Chair, Jefferies Financial Canada & Senior Advisor, Bennett Jones LLP; Natasha Hope Morano, President, NHM Connect & Co-Founder & Host NextGen 

Join The Honourable John Manley, Chair, Jefferies Financial Canada & Senior Advisor, Bennett Jones LLP and Natasha Morano, Founder and President of NHM Connect and  Co-Founder of NextGen for an armchair discussion regarding the future of government relations. As the former Deputy Prime Minister of Canada, the Hon. John Manley will discuss what makes for good and bad government relations, share tips and tricks for success in this field, and provide insights into the future of government relations.

Event Hosts

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Advisory Committee

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David Coletto 

Founder, Chair & CEO, Abacus Data 

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Megan Buttle

National Digital Lead, Earnscliffe Strategies, & President of the Government Relations Institute of Canada (GRIC)

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Alexis Easton

President, Public Affairs Association of Canada and Chief Public Affairs Officer and Board Secretary, ROM

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Principal, Amplify

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Director of Government Relations, Rogers Communications

Speakers

Event Partners

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