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Good morning. Thank you for joining us today for CBC/Radio-Canadaâ€™s first Annual Public Meeting.
As Chair of the Board or Directors, it is my great honour to speak to you this morning on behalf of the Board and all the people at CBC/Radio-Canada.
It is my pleasure to introduce to you the directors of CBC/Radio-Canada who are with us today. Let me start in the West.
1. Patricia McIver, from Vancouver;
2. John Young from Prince George;
3. Linda Black from Calgary;
4. Trina McQueen, from Toronto;
5. Peter Herrndorf, from Ottawa;
6. Peter Charbonneau, from Ottawa
7. Brian Mitchell, from Montreal;
8. George Cooper, from Halifax;
9. Dr. Edna Turpin, from Newfoundland
10. and Hubert T. Lacroix, our President and CEO.
John Young, from Prince George, and RĂ©mi Racine, from Montreal, send their regrets.
Directors meet with CBC/Radio-Canada senior management on a regular basis to discuss the Corporationâ€™s priorities and operations.
What does that mean? It means reviewing and approving Senior Managementâ€™s strategic plan, business plan and operating budgets. Signing off on financial statements and the annual report. Looking at Corporate policies ranging from standards on violence in programming to human resource guidelines. Monitoring the progress of real estate projects. Indeed, any major decision or plan made by the CBC/Radio-Canadaâ€™s senior management team has first to be reviewed and approved by the Board of Directors.
It should come as no surprise to hear that 2008-2009 was a particularly challenging year for CBC/Radio-Canada, as it was for all broadcasters and indeed for all Canadians. I shall let Hubert tell you more about those challenges.
But if the year made one thing clear, it is that serious financial constraints are the reality for CBC/Radio-Canada, as they are for our competitors and for our advertisers. We have no choice but to adapt, and it has meant making difficult choices with respect to our workforce and to the services we offer Canadians.
I can confirm, that the renewal strategy that we have put in place to guide us through this period of change will preserve the Corporationâ€™s capacity to continue to deliver the services that we provide to Canadians.
During difficult economic times, the critical role of CBC/Radio-Canada as a reliable and trusted source of information increases. The national public broadcaster acts as a unifying force by offering in-depth analysis of the stories and issues that matter to Canadians. The stories we tell reaffirm our countryâ€™s shared values and identity. Our current and future success rest on reaching more Canadians in more ways, with programs they want to hear or view on the platform of their choice.
Before I make way for our President and CEO, I would like to extend my thanks to all of my colleague on the Boards as well as our staff for their support, their time and their ongoing commitment to public broadcasting.
I would also like to thank, Canadians, for their ongoing strong support for public broadcasting. We see it expressed in so many ways across the country. The number of you that have joined us today reinforces that support. CBC/Radio-Canada truly appreciates it.
Now I would like to introduce our President and CEO, Hubert T. Lacroix.