Past President of the Canadian International Council (CIC).
Congratulations to the Vancouver Branch of the CIC for their very successful, well-attended, and widely-covered conference last month, Canada-Latin America Relations: Opportunities and Challenges. The event featured important private sector speakers, diplomats, academics and Diane Ablonczy, our Minister of State for the Americas, gave the keynote address. Many thanks to conference sponsors, Teck and the Vancouver Airport Authority.
We are delighted to welcome the Windsor-Essex Branch to our cross-country branch network, and to have them support the CIC’s partnership with the Mowat Centre and the Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program Great Lakes – St. Lawrence Region Summit in Windsor, Ontario, on June 21 and 22, 2011. Leaders from business, government, non-profit, and other sectors from Canada and the US are gathering to scope out a vision for the region and identify practical steps necessary to achieve this vision through enhanced collaboration across the Canada-US border. Watch for our commentary on the proceedings on www.opencanada.org after the event.
While at national office we have been working hard with our collaborators at The Mark to launch our site this week, branch activity has been very busy from coast to coast. Montreal hosted Kenya’s leading women’s rights Champion, Flora Terah; Ottawa presented an eminent trio of Canadian foreign policy experts—Denis Stairs, Jack Granatstein, and David Bercuson—to talk about Canada’s international role, learning from the past and looking to the future; in Victoria, eminent Canadian diplomat Jeremy Kinsman gave a talk, Democracy Rising: Are idealists realists? And on the opposite side of the country, in Halifax, Marq de Villiers will be talking about Strategies for Surviving the 21st Century World. The Waterloo Branch is holding their annual media panel Muzzled Media—The Global Challenge, in collaboration with the Centre for International Governance Innovation.
I look forward to hearing your comments, feedback, and suggestions for our new digital platform. I am looking forward to sharing your views with our readers via my Dispatch pieces.