Luminaries Gather in St. John’s for 2017 STARTS NOW — A Canada 150 Conference Series on June 3, 2013

May 31, 2013

Multi-city conference series aimed at developing best ways to celebrate Canada’s 150thanniversary of Confederation in 2017

What do these top luminaries from a diverse range of pursuits including the arts, culture, business and technology have in common?

Ainsley Dicks – Executive Director, Community Foundation of Newfoundland & Labrador
Françoise Enguehard – Author and former journalist, Radio-Canada
Cheryl Hickman – Founder, Opera of the Avalon
Susan Knight – Chancellor, Memorial University of Newfoundland
Donovan Taplin – Youth leader
Ali Chaisson – President & CEO, groupe OPTIONS group, inc

The event will be co-hosted by Nathalie Geddry, cultural reporter, Le réveil, Radio-Canada, and Tom Harrington, host of Marketplace on CBC Television. ​Actress Lynda Boyd from CBC's Republic of Doyle will also be in attendance.

These great influencers will gather in St. John’s, on Monday, June 3 for an exploratory discussion on how best to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017. They will present their thoughts on today’s Canada, its future and how to celebrate its 150th anniversary.

CBC/Radio-Canada, in partnership with Community Foundations of Canada (CFC) and VIA Rail Canada, is sparking the national conversation about Canada’s upcoming 150th anniversary of Confederation with the CANADA 150/2017 STARTS NOW conference series, in collaboration with other local and national organizations.

The conferences are being held in both official languages and bring together citizens and leaders from communities across every region of the country, representing every demographic of our diverse society. This series of regional conferences is taking place across the country from April to June 2013. Ideas and suggestions generated at the conferences will be compiled and presented at the CANADA 150/2017 STARTS NOWsummary event in Ottawa on June 27.

The St. John’s event is one of a dozen related conferences being held across the country, aimed at informing, inspiring and incubating local and regional projects and ideas to celebrate Canada’s upcoming 150th anniversary of Confederation, and to develop new ways to connect Canadians to national initiatives. Canadians have the opportunity to watch the CANADA 150/2017 STARTS NOW conferences via live stream on the interactive digital platform at Additionally, Canadians can participate in the conferences live by submitting comments to @cbclive and using #Canada150 on Twitter.

For additional event information and speaker bios, please visit

For further information or to arrange access/interviews, contact:

Johanne Huard, Radio-Canada
Manager, Regional Communications

Renee Weekes
Senior publicist, CBC
416-205-2053 (office)
416-729-7945 (cell)

For VIA Rail Canada
Jacques C. Gagnon
Senior manager, Community and Media Relations, Legal and Corporate Affairs

For Community Foundations of Canada
Anne-Marie McElrone
Vice president, Public Engagement
613-236-2664, poste 304

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