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  Conference at a glance Detailed Program Speakers  


Sunday October 21, 2018


Session Time Session Title / Overview Speakers and Moderators
2:30pm - 6:30pm

YPN Session / Workshop
A session devoted specifically to Young Professionals in the consulting engineering sector. Join other YPs to take part in a group activity that will challenge YPs to think critically and apply their creativity and communication skills. YPs will first connect with their peers and analyze given information to identify commonalities and create connections. This exercise will be used to create groups for a rapid fire presentation activity where YPs will be challenged to work together to prepare a presentation about issues critical to YPs in the consulting engineering sector. This session will allow participants to develop their skills through practical application and will provide an opportunity to network in an engaging and dynamic setting. (This session is included in the YP registration fee and is exclusive to YPs). The workshop will be followed by a 1-hour Roundtable discussion for the ACEC Young Professionals Network (YPN) which will inform participants about YP activities across the country and provide an open forum for general discussion.

Session sponsored by: 




Monday October 22, 2018


Session Time Session Title / Overview Speakers and Moderators

8:00am - 8:15am

Conference Opening
Welcome remarks from the ACEC Chair will kick-off the business program.

Todd Smith, ACEC Chair


8:15am - 9:00am 

Opening Keynote: 

The Canadian economy – is Canada open for business? The implications of international market forces and what service industry firms need to know to remain competitive

The Canadian economic landscape has been in flux over the past year with new international trade agreements and the renegotiation of existing ones. What needs to happen for the Canadian economy to move forward into long term prosperity? What is the impact of the Liberal government’s attempts to negotiate issues such as gender equity, indigenous rights and climate change into agreements? The Honourable Perrin Beatty, President & Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, has been invited to provide insight on how Canadian business can prepare for the coming economic reality of a renegotiated NAFTA, TPP and CETA.

Session sponsored by: 


The Honourable Perrin Beatty, President & CEO, The Canadian Chamber of Commerce

Moderator: Jeff Lutzak, Partner, Collins Barrow


9:00am - 10:00am 

The state of consulting engineering in Canada – organizational strategies for dealing with major disruptions

Our top industry leaders discuss the most pressing challenges being faced by the consulting engineering sector and the emerging best practices to address them. Proposed topics of discussion will include artificial intelligence and design work, the evolution of technology and P3s, the challenges of a mobile workforce, and the influx of new players leading project delivery.

Session sponsored by: 

Jeff DiBattista, Practice Principal, DIALOG

Bill Moore, Technical Services Production Manager, Associated Engineering

Eric DesRoche, Manager, Infrastructure, Business Strategy & Marketing, Autodesk

Peter Hughes, Canadian Digital Service Leader, KPMG

Moderator: John Gamble, President & CEO, ACEC

10:30am - 11:30am 


Integrated project delivery – the future of consulting engineering?

Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) is becoming more common and represents the future for many consulting engineering firms. Yet few Canadian firms have experience with this type of project delivery.  This panel will explore the emergence of IPD in the Canadian marketplace and what considerations must be given when entering this type of project, from cyber security to contracts and liability.

Session sponsored by: 

Allan Partridge, Principal, Next Architecture

James Paul, President & CEO, Defence Construction Canada

Dick Bayer, President, The ReAlignment Group, Ltd.

Steve Panciuk, Senior Vice-President National Engineering Practice Lead, MARSH Canada

Moderator: Steve Fleck, Executive Vice-President, Chief Practice & Project Officer, Stantec


1:15pm - 2:00pm

A Made in Canada Approach to Finance Major Infrastructure Projects

Next year, the Canada Infrastructure Bank will enter the infrastructure landscape as a new tool that provincial, territorial, municipal and Indigenous government partners can use to access innovative financing for revenue-generating infrastructure projects. Its aim is to attract private and institutional investment to such projects in Canada, which will help public dollars go further by leveraging the capital and expertise of the private sector. Learn directly from the Chair of the Banks’s board of directors about the Bank’s vision and what it potentially means for consulting engineering firms and other infrastructure stakeholders in this facilitated interactive discussion.


Session sponsored by: 

Janice Fukakusa, Chair of the Board of Directors, Canada Infrastructure Bank

Moderator: John Haythorne, Partner, Dentons


2:00pm - 3:00pm

Doing Business in a Digital World

Be ready to do business in a brave, new world. There are enormous opportunities for consulting engineering firms as digital technology changes how we, and clients, do business. Learn to take advantage of these opportunities. But also understand the new risks such as cyber security, intellectual property protection, data integrity, and other liabilities. Be prepared so that your firm can succeed.

Session sponsored by: 

Carolena GordonPartner, Clyde & Co.

Jennifer Sorensen, Regional Director - North America, BST Global 

Nicolas Robillard, Senior Director, Cyber Security and Security Support Services, SNC-Lavalin

Moderator: Martine Proulx, Vice-President, Programs and Member Services

3:30pm - 4:30pm

The struggle for top talent and diversity in consulting engineering

We continue to face a constant struggle in the hiring and retaining of qualified talent. How can consulting engineering firms ensure they have the right, skilled, diverse talent in place with proper growth paths to management and senior leadership roles to ensure succession planning? How can the sector collaborate for improved results in the areas of diversity and inclusion?  Our panel of HR and diversity experts explore the challenges and opportunities our sector faces in the coming years. 

Session sponsored by: 






Marcia Friesen, Associate Dean (Design Education), Faculty of Engineering, University of Manitoba

Erin Davis, Director, Global Talent Engagement, Stantec, Inc.

Rowley Mossop, Principal, Innovia Partners

Dr. Ishwar K. Puri, Dean, Faculty of Engineering, McMaster University

Moderator: Siobhan Robinson, Project Engineer, Kerr Wood Leidal

4:30pm - 5:00pm

Closing Keynote

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

5:00pm - 5:30pm

Parliament Hill Day briefing

This briefing will provide participants of Tuesday’s Parliament Hill Day meetings insight into the key messages they will be delivering to their MPs, protocol suggestions and other important information related to this activity. This session is required attendance for all delegates taking part in the Parliament Hill Day meetings.  

Huw Williams, President, Impact Public Affairs 

John Gamble, President & CEO, ACEC 


Tuesday October 23, 2018


Session Time Session Title / Overview Speakers and Moderators
8:30am - 9:00am

Opening Keynote

The Honourable Lisa Raitt, Deputy Leader of the Official Opposition
9:00am - 5:00pm Parliament Hill Day
Individual meetings with Parliamentarians
9:15am - 10:30am

Successful frameworks for major nation building projects

Major nation building projects will require collaboration between various levels of government, our First Nations, and the private sector more than ever. This panel will explore projects where multiple stakeholder communities achieved a successful collaboration. The discussion will explore best practices and lessons learned in creating a framework that ensures a successful project outcome that could become a model for moving major projects forward.

Lawrence Pinter, President & CEO, PINTER and Associates Ltd.

Niilo Edwards, Executive Director, First Nations Major Projects Coalition

Leon Botham, Principal Engineer, NewFields

Steve Coupland, Director of Regulatory and Environmental Affairs, Canadian Nuclear Association

Moderator: Keith Sashaw, President & CEO, ACEC-BC

11:00am - 12:00pm 

Politicization of infrastructure – what is the solution?

With so many major infrastructure programs throughout the country being affected by changing governments, what can be done to ensure that investment is stable and predictable and for projects to move forward? What role can the sector play?


Althia Raj, Ottawa Bureau Chief, Huffington Post

Joel-Denis Bellavance, Ottawa Bureau Chief, La Presse

Mike De Souza, Managing Editor, National Observer

Moderator: Huw Williams, President, Impact Public Affairs 

12:30pm - 1:30pm Closing Lunch  
2:00pm - 3:00pm

Question Period (optional)

Watch Canada's federal politicians, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Opposition leader Rona Ambrose, and NDP leader Tom Mulcair spar in the House of Commons during Question Period. The primary purpose of Question Period is to allow Members of Parliament to seek information from the Government and to call it to account for its actions. (Limited space, access will be on a ‘first come, first served’ basis as determined by Parliament Hill employees)

2:30pm - 4:30pm

Private Parliamentary Tour of West Block

This private Parliamentary Tour will start in the new Parliament Hill Visitor Welcome Centre, a complex multi-level underground facility built as part of the West Block Rehabilitation Program. Delegates will make their way through the principal gathering space located on the lower level where they will connect via link to the North Court Hall and enter the glazed heritage courtyard of the newly designed Interim Chamber where the House of Commons Chief Architect will present the building’s history, heritage and architectural design features.

6:30pm - 10:30pm

Canadian Consulting Engineering Awards Gala​

Celebrate excellence in consulting engineering! The Canadian Consulting Engineering Awards Gala dinner will be the culminating event of the conference and industry's night to award the highest honours for achievements in consulting engineering in Canada. Now in their 50th year, the CCE awards are co-sponsored by ACEC and Canadian Consulting Engineer magazine. Close your conference experience off at our industry's night of excellence and premier networking event.