2018 CONFERENCE PRESENTERS
(Subject to Change)

 

DARBY ALLEN
Fort McMurray's Fire Chief (Ret.) - Motivational and Crisis Leadership Speaker

During the catastrophic Alberta wildfires, fire chief Darby Allen shot to global acclaim for guiding the 88,000 residents of Fort McMurray to safety with no loss of life—the largest evacuation in Canadian history. Now, he offers guidance on how to be a stoic, quick-thinking leader in tough situations. We all face emergencies and crises—Allen shows us how to overcome them.

Known as the face of the Alberta wildfires—and widely celebrated as a national hero—Darby Allen is an exemplar of selfless courage and level-headedness under pressure. Allen was Regional Fire Chief of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo, an area that encompasses the community of Fort McMurray. In spring 2016, he spearheaded the evacuation of the city’s entire population while the rest of the world watched. Throughout the ensuing weeks of operations, he worked tirelessly with first responders and volunteers, who came from across the nation (and globe) to assist. His updates to the media were not only a means of reliable information, but a source of optimism—Allen provided calm reassurance as the lead spokesperson throughout the rescue efforts.

A native of Birmingham, England, where he worked as a firefighter for the Hampshire Fire Brigade, Allen emigrated to Canada in 1990. He began work as a firefighter with the Calgary Fire Department in 1992, moving up in rank from Training Officer to Assistant Deputy Chief of Operations, before moving on to Fort McMurray Fire Service in 2009, where he became Regional Fire Chief in 2013.

 

JONATHAN BANKS
Research Associate - University of Alberta

Dr. Jonathan Banks is hydrogeologist and geochemist with over 10 years of experience in geothermal energy sciences. He came to the University of Alberta in 2013, after working for several years at an experimental geothermal power plant north of Berlin, Germany. A staff member in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Dr. Banks is currently leading the University’s geothermal energy team and is responsible for coordinating inter-departmental and inter-collegiate geothermal research activities. He brings an entrepreneurial spirit to the laboratory, with a focus on building bridges between pure science to applied science to commercial success.

Dr. Banks is a pioneer in advancing several transformational technologies for Western Canada, including the use of supercritical CO2 as thermal energy transport fluid in crystalline rocks and the development of a novel, ultra-low temperature differential heat engine. Through the on – going “Deep Dive” analysis, in partnership with Alberta Innovates – Energy and Environment Solutions and several regional municipalities Dr. Banks is also the leading figure in commercialization – focused geothermal energy exploration and development in Alberta. 

 

 

CAM BATTLEY
Executive Vice-President - Aurora Cannabis

Cam Battley is Executive Vice President at Aurora Cannabis, a producer of medical cannabis and cannabis oils under license from Health Canada. He is responsible for business development, external communications, investor relations, government relations, and medical and patient stakeholders. Cam is also a member of the Board of Directors of Cannabis Canada, the trade association of Licensed Producers, and Chair of the Advocacy Committee for the Association. He previously served as Vice President for licensed producer Bedrocan Canada. With a background as a health sector management consultant, he combines experience in government, health care NGOs, and the biopharmaceutical industries.

In 1997, Cam founded Health Strategy Group, Inc., a management consultancy with global clients, ranging from health professional and patient NGOs, to innovative and generic pharmaceutical firms, and biotechnology and medical device companies.

Before founding Health Strategy Group, Cam was Vice President, Creative of Canada's largest health care communications firm, providing clients with integrated strategies designed to help health professionals, companies and charitable organizations manage crises, support opinion leaders, educate patients, and improve access to health care services.

Prior to moving to consulting, Cam worked for Eli Lilly and Company, as Director of Communications for Canada. He arrived in the health sector after serving as Legislative Assistant to the Canadian Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs, where he was responsible for developing legislation and shepherding it through the House of Commons, as well as negotiating with stakeholder groups and opposition parties.

 

GARTH BRAUN
President, CEO, & Chair - Blackbird Energy

Garth Braun is a native of Grande Prairie, Alberta and a seasoned oil and gas executive with close to 15 years of oil and gas experience combined with 30 years of diversified business experience in finance and real estate. Mr. Braun currently serves as President, Chief Executive Officer, and Chairman of Blackbird Energy Inc., a highly innovative oil and gas exploration and development company focused on the liquids-rich Montney fairway at Pipestone near Grande Prairie. Given his local roots, Mr. Braun takes tremendous pride in being able to progress and promote the economic development of the Greater Grande Prairie region in a socially and environmentally responsible manner.

Over the past several years, Mr. Braun has led Blackbird through the successful acquisitions of two E&P companies, the divestiture of non-core Montney assets, the accumulation of its Montney land at Elmworth and the drilling of Blackbird's Elmworth Montney wells. Mr. Braun was previously the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of an international oil and gas company, an investment banker and a principal of a private real estate development company that completed over $1 billion in real estate development. Mr. Braun is also a founder and director of Stage Completions Inc., an innovative downhole completions company.

 

 

CHRIS FIELDS
Speaker, Writer, Community Builder at 13 Ways

Overview

What if we could achieve the exceptional? In our home – our community – exists our ability to realize a world of possibilities. In family, work, hobbies, and the deeper meaning of life we pursue in our community, lies the soul of humanity. In our community, we are our most powerful in our individual and collective potential.

BUT – our potential isn’t being fully realized. We take community-building for granted. Worse, we have fallen out of trust with government and institutions - paralyzing the ability to aspire and achieve. We live in a competitive world of accelerating change that can pass a community by with a whoosh. We sit on the sidelines and assume someone else needs to create the change we want to see.

In a turbulent era, now is the time to re-energize people around their aspirational community-building mission. Chris’ 25 years of award-winning marketing and economic development experience has been dedicated to reconnecting people to the power of community-building. His dry sense of humour and no nonsense, cut-through-clutter style challenges conventions and leaves people with inspiration to “make community-building personal.”

For Chris’ writing, visit: https://www.13ways.ca/category/chris-musings/ 

 

 

J.P. GERVAIS
Chief Agricultural Economist - Farm Credit Canada

J.P. Gervais is Vice-President and Chief Agricultural Economist at FCC. He has over 20 years of experience analyzing domestic and international agricultural policies and markets, and his insights help guide strategy and monitor risk throughout the corporation. He’s frequently a featured speaker at national and international conferences, addressing global trends and the linkages to agri-food markets. In addition to acting as an FCC spokesperson on economic matters, J.P. provides commentary on the agriculture industry through videos and the FCC Ag Economics blog. 

Background

Prior to joining FCC in 2010, J.P. was a professor of agricultural economics at North Carolina State University and Laval University. He also held the Canada Research Chair in Agri-Industries and International Trade at Laval. J.P. is Past-President of the Canadian Agricultural Economics Society. He obtained his Ph.D. in economics from Iowa State University in 1999.

 

DR. JOHN GILLILAND, OBE
Member at EU Commission, DG Agriculture, Mixed Farming Expert Industry Panel

John Gilliland, Director of Agriculture & Sustainability, with Devenish Nutrition; and a Director of Resourceful Organics; is highly respected and recognised as an excellent participant and communicator in the Agri Food and Sustainable Land Management Sectors. He has been an award winning Farmer in Ireland and in the UK; an Innovator and Farm Leader; while at the same time, he has been a policy adviser for Devolved, National and European Governments.

Just retired as a Non-Executive Director of the Scottish Rural College and SAC Consultancy in Edinburgh, positions he held for seven years, John was formerly President of the N. Ireland Farmers Union during the 2001 outbreak of Hoof & Mouth; Vice Chair of the UK Sustainable Development Commission under Prime Minister Tony Blair; and Chair of the UK’s Rural Climate Change Forum.

He currently runs his family’s 180ha, arable and willow farm in N. Ireland, while also being a member of the EU Commission’s Expert Industry Panel on Mixed Farming Systems; and currently, chairs N. Ireland’s Expert Working Group, which has just published N. Ireland’s first Sustainable Land Management Strategy for the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs, in Belfast. He has recently taken up the position as an External Expert advisor to UK Waitrose Supermarket Chain, on Sustainability with in their Livestock Supply Chain.  

 

 

CAROL ANN HILTON
CEO - Transformation International

Carol Anne Hilton, MBA is the CEO of Transformation International an award winning First Nation Social and Economic Development company. Carol Anne is a recognized First Nation’s business leader with an international Masters Degree in Business Management (MBA) from the University of Hertfordshire, England. Carol Anne is of Nuu chah nulth descent from the Hesquiaht Nation on Vancouver Island.

Carol Anne was recently appointed as a senior advisor on the Canadian Federal Economic Growth Council. The Council advises the Federal Finance Minister Morneau on Canadian economic growth. Carol Anne is currently authoring ‘Indigenomics- a Global Power Shift’

Transformation’s work has been recognized with a BC Aboriginal Outstanding Business Achievement Award, a Creating Wealth Award from the National Indigenous Council of Elders and Business of the Year Award from the Nuu chah nulth Economic Development Corporation. In November 2015, Carol Anne was also recently nominated for work in multi-culturalism by the BC Government.

Carol Anne is a leader, advisor, and facilitator in areas related to community development, nation building, business management, economic development, governance, corporate engagement, industry development, finance and resource management.

Carol Anne currently serves as Director on the McGill University Institute of the Study of Canada and the national Canadian Community Economic Development Network. Previously Carol Anne served as Director on the Vancouver Island Investment Fund, the World Fisheries Trust, the Victoria Community Micro Lending Society, the Community Social Planning Council as well as a founding Director for the BC First Nations Health Authority.

Carol Anne has led the establishment of a line of thought called #indigenomics- building and developing local Indigenous economies. Carol Anne is currently authoring ‘Indigenomics – a Global Power Shift.’ Carol Anne has been an instructor at Camosun Business School Leadership Program, the University of Winnipeg’s Masters in Indigenous Community Planning Program and currently at Simon Fraser University’s Community Economic Development Program and the Banff Center’s Indigenous Business Program where she is also currently a Fleck Fellow.

 

LEN MORISSETTE
Owner - CIA Solutions

Len moved to Grande Prairie 15 years ago from Vernon, British Columbia, with his beautiful wife and two daughters.

After 11 years working at the Ainsworth lumber mill, he had a dream of bringing innovation to the advertising industry. He co-founded CIA Solutions in 2011, as a producer, co-director and cinematographer.

Len is a member on the Friendship Centre board, and a speaker at Spirit Seekers for Aboriginal youth, and is a proud member of the Cree community.  

 

 

EMILY SALSBURY-DEVEAUX
Executive Director - School of Retailing

Emily Salsbury-Deveaux started her consulting company at the age of 16. She increased profits for each business she worked with and as a result started working with shopping centres in 2004. She worked to bring retailers to Canada as well as help them expand through location planning and store set-up. This led to the next 9 years working with international retailers, real estate firms and franchises to help with growth.

In 2013, she was asked to consult for the University of Alberta's School of Retailing. This led ultimately to the first and only full-time position she has taken. She was offered the position of Executive Director and has been working with the centre ever since. In her role she started RETAILWEEK, a national event around careers in retail, SOR|CG which is the largest student consulting firm in North America and grew the School of Retailing profile in Canada.

Emily Salsbury-Deveaux has an intense passion for self directed learning and continues to add other disciplines to her skill set. Emily owns a number of franchises and invests in new retail businesses when there is a fit.  

 

 

MARTY SEYMOUR
Director, Industry and Stakeholder Relations - Farm Credit Canada

Marty Seymour is Director, Industry and Stakeholder Relations at FCC, where he engages with national associations, government officials and industry influencers to explore partnership opportunities that add real value to Canadian agriculture. 

Background

Marty was raised on a cattle and grain farm in Carnduff, Sask., in the heart of oil country. A cowboy at heart, he moved to Saskatoon and earned a degree in agriculture science from the University of Saskatchewan. After a decade in sales and marketing, Marty spent five years as CEO of Canadian Western Agribition, Canada’s largest livestock show and exhibition, where he was highly successful in boosting the show’s profile. Marty was recently named a CBC Future 40 recipient for contributions to the community. He has been a board member for Red Coat Cattle Feeders, one of Saskatchewan’s largest feedlots, and currently serves on the Four Horse Developments board – a corporation working to advance economic prosperity for Sakimay First Nations. Marty is an active runner and recovering rodeo cowboy who, when he’s not chasing after his two kids, also enjoys international travel.


 

SUSAN TARGETT
Executive Vice-President, Corporate - Seven Generations Energy

 

BRUCE VINCENT
President of Communities For A Great Northwest

In 1984, after completing college, Bruce moved his family back to Libby, Montana and joined Vincent Logging as business manager. Vincent Logging, a small family owned business, was started by Bruce’s father in 1968. Bruce is a third generation logger.

In 1988, Bruce helped form Communities For A Great Northwest, a non-profit education and information group dedicated to the intelligent use of our natural resources. The group has members though out the Northwest. The Great Northwest Log Haul, which helped focus national attention on resource supply problems in the Northwest, was the first of many of the group’s activities.

Bruce is currently serving as President of Communities For A Great Northwest; is a partner in the public relations firm ENVIRONOMICS, serves as Executive Director of the Preserve America Presidential Award winning Provider Pals® cultural exchange program, serves on the board of the Evergreen Foundation, the board of the Pacific Logging Congress, and serves on the Kootenai Forest Resource Advisory Committee, the Cabinet/Yaak Grizzly Bear Community Involvement Team, and the State of Montana’s Thompson Chain of Lakes Citizen Management Council.

He recently co-wrote a book named 'Against the Odds: A Path Forward for Rural America'. It is a powerful firsthand account of life in rural America that offers a broad, probing look at the environmental tensions surrounding the collapse of many of our rural resource communities.

He speaks throughout the United States and the world to groups including resource, recreation, banking and business associations, legislative bodies, university campuses, and anyone else who would like to hear about our rural cultures.

Bruce often provides testimony on resource issues before Congress. He has been reported on by Outside, Wheat Life, Range, Tree Farmer, Time and Audubon magazines, The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post and other periodicals. Bruce has appeared on “60 Minutes” and participated in radio shows, documentary videos and news broadcasts throughout the nation and in several countries including Canada, Iceland, Scotland, Australia. Bruce has appeared on the cover of Evergreen Magazine and was a highlighted “hero” in William Perry Pendley’s book It Takes A Hero.

During Bruce’s career he has been awarded the national Timber Industry Activist of the year, the Montana Timberman of the Year, the Sylvan Award for service to the national timber industry, the Public Service Award from the Association of Consulting Foresters of America, the winner of the 2009 Women in Agricultures “Keeper of the Tenth” award, received the Agri-Women’s 2007 Veritas Award Winner, and has been inducted into the Libby High School Hall of Fame.

Bruce holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and a Masters in Business Administration from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. Bruce has been married to his wife Patti Jo for 41years and has four children, two sons-in-law, two daughter-in-laws, and eleven grandchildren: Chas, 40; Daughter-In-Law Michelle – Addyson, 11, Madison, 10, Reagan, 6, Cash, 4; Echo Jo, 37; Son-In-Law Justin – Lute, 8, Presley, 6, Kya, 4; Lacie, 34; Son-In-Law Cory – Capri, 7, Acton, 5, Tenley, 3; Vance, 31 – Berklie, 5.

Bruce’s family settled in Montana in 1904. His current activities represent a family commitment to responsible environmentalism. 

 

SUZANNE WEST
President & CEO - Imaginea Energy

She is the President and CEO of Imaginea Energy. A fearless leader. A visionary.

She is going to change the world. And she’s going to do it by getting other people to change the world with her. Imaginea is her latest venture and one of five companies that, over the past 15 years, she has successfully built from scratch. She spent her early days receiving an engineering degree from the University of Calgary, then spent the first 11 years of her career as a reservoir engineer and in various leadership positions in large corporations.

It doesn’t end there — she has also been a fitness instructor for 21 years, and participates in philanthropic projects that are very near to her heart; those that involve children, animals and homelessness.

Her unparalleled wisdom, that only a brilliant and repeatedly successful entrepreneur can offer, has attracted a crack team to break down the most daunting of barriers. To rewire the way we think about energy; to turn what we’re doing into what we should be doing. Her latest passion, Imaginea, is to create a new kind of Energy Company that values the planet, people and profits, equally. Essentially, it is to discover a better way of developing our resources and creating “and” solutions and new possibilities to transform the energy industry into a force for good. Her truly laudable career has crystallized into an epiphany: profits are not the nemesis of this planet and the people on it. Oil doesn’t have to be a dirty word. Change can happen, and it will happen because it’s the smart thing to do.

It’s this vision, guided by her insight and astonishing ambitions, that unites our ranks and compels us to realize our great potential.

MORE TO BE CONFIRMED!

 
 

 

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