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2018 Tourism Congress Program


Monday, November 26

14:00 - 17:00



Sectoral meetings including the Provincial & Territorial Tourism Industry Association (private meetings)


DAY 1 – Tuesday, November 27

08:00 - 17:00


08:30 - 09:30

TIAC Annual General Meeting

(Open to TIAC Members only)

09:30 - 10:00 

Discover Global Networking Lounge

10:00 - 10:10

Tourism Congress Official Opening, presented by Air Canada

Canada’s leading tourism conference

Ahead of the next federal election, TIAC unveils a line-up of speakers and sessions delving into the global context and national issues shaping the future of tourism.

Speaker: David McKenna, President, Banff Jasper Collection by Pursuit
10:10 - 10:30

Leadership Report

The future of tourism - Canada’s economic pillar

TIAC outlines a forward-thinking strategy that will bring industry and stakeholders together to fast track the positioning of tourism as Canada’s top industry sector.

Speaker: Charlotte Bell, President & CEO, TIAC 
10:30 - 11:30

MP Town Hall

Take a stand for tourism!

As the world shifts towards a whole-of-government approach to sustain tourism growth, this is your chance to join the conversation as we engage with the elected officials championing our sector.


Alaina Lockhart - Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie, Member of Parliament (Fundy Royal)
Gord Johns – NDP Critic for Small Business and Tourism, Member of Parliament (Courtenay—Alberni)
Blake Richards – Conservative Critic for Small Business and Export Promotion, and Tourism, Member of Parliament (Banff-Airdrie)

11:30 - 12:00

Discover Global Networking Lounge

12:00 - 13:30

Canadian Tourism Hall of Fame Luncheon, presented by Air Canada

Industry recognizes the legacy of exemplary tourism executives whose work catalyzed sector development and inspires current and emerging leaders.

13:45 - 15:00 


A new - TIAC Talk feature

A call-to-action group of trailblazers talk about new approaches and perspectives in sustainability, labour, culinary and the Indigenous economy illustrated by the Tourism economics.


Dr. Rachel Dodds, Professor, Ryerson, School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, Director, Sustaining Tourism
Shanna Munro, President & CEO, Restaurants Canada
Carol Anne Hilton, CEO, Transformation International 
Trevor Benson, Director, Food Tourism Development & Innovation, Culinary Tourism Alliance 

15:00 - 15:30

Discover Global Networking Lounge

15:30 - 16:30  

Canada’s Success in International Markets

Future-proof for success in 2019 and beyond

While Canada’s international visitor economy continued to improve for a 5th straight year in 2018, how much longer can we expect to see the trend continue? Destination Canada will not only share success stories on what’s working today across both business events and leisure segments; but also on how Team Canada can best collaborate to future-proof for success in 2019 and beyond.


Jon Mamela, VP Marketing, Destination Canada
Chantal Sturk-Nadeau, Executive Director, Business Events Canada

17:00 - 18:30 

Chair's Opening Reception, presented by Rocky Mountaineer

(Open to all delegates)


DAY 2 – Wednesday, November 28

08:00 - 14:00


08:30 - 09:45 

The Future is Already Here, Breakfast presented by Parks Canada

Back by popular demand - Skift

Informed by intensive daily coverage, long-term research, and many hundreds of hours connecting with Tourism leaders and operators, this is the most comprehensive, sneak peek of Megatrends that are shaping tourism’s future.

Speaker: Greg Oates, Executive Editor, Brand Strategy, Skift
10:00 - 11:00 

Beyond Takeoff

Airports, airlines and DMO’s - policy perspectives

Weighing in on the opportunities and the challenges of increased visitation. How sector players are working together to overcome policy challenges and continue to deliver. 


Traci Bednard, Vice President, Communications & Passenger Experience, Edmonton International Airport
Andy Gibbons, Director of Government Relations & Regulatory Affairs, Westjet
Fitti Lourenco, Director, Government Affairs – Federal Government and Ontario, Air Canada
Yves Lalumière, President & Chief Executive Officer, Tourisme Montréal 

11:00 - 11:30 

Discover Global Networking Lounge

11:30 - 12:30 

The Catalyst Accord

Moving to action – a pledge for the advancement of women in business

A tangible initiative that calls on Canadian boards and CEOs to walk the talk for women in business by providing opportunities, resources and access.

Speaker: Tanya van Biesen, Executive Director, Catalyst Canada
12:30 - 14:00 

Travel’s Technology Driven Transformation, Luncheon presented by Marriott Hotels of Canada

Known Traveller Concept, biometrics and more

Towards a seamless travel journey - how the evolving technological landscape and increasing digitization are enabling the travel ecosystem while facilitating the demand for platforms and alliances to enable faster and secure travel.

Speaker: Liselotte de Maar, Managing Director, Accenture Strategy
14:00 - 15:00

Taking Tourism to New Heights

Cannabis - The game changer

A disruptor for some and game changer for others. Insights from Cannabis industry leaders and legal advisors. Keeping it real for Canadian tourism businesses.


Mark Zekulin, President, Canopy Growth
Trina Fraser, Partner, Brazeau Seller Law

15:00 - 15:30

Discover Global Networking Lounge

15:30 - 16:30 

Destination Canada - Public Meeting

Annual public report

Destination Canada provides an overview of the organization’s performance in its international markets, campaign updates and key strategic initiatives including new partnerships

(Open to General Public)


David Goldstein, President & CEO, Destination Canada
Ben Cowan-Dewar, Chair of the Board of Directors, Destination Canada

18:30 - 19:00

Sponsored Reception for the Canadian Tourism Awards

19:00 - 21:00 

The Canadian Tourism Awards, presented by the Toronto Star



Thank you to our Sponsors

Platinum Sponsors


Gold Sponsors 


Silver Sponsors