Speaker Bios

Chair & Moderator:

Perry Spitznagel
Vice
Chair, Bennett Jones LLP

Perry Spitznagel is Vice Chair of Bennett Jones, a former longstanding Managing Partner of the Calgary office and a senior corporate lawyer with extensive national and cross-border experience in a broad range of matters. Perry has acted for clients in some of the largest transactions in Canada, including many of Canada’s and North America’s largest national and cross-border financings and mergers.

He has been recognized by Financial Post Magazine as one of the 25 most influential people in corporate Canada. He is also recognized by Chambers Global, the Legal Media Group, Best Lawyers in Canada, the IFLR 1000 and The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as a leading lawyer in his areas of expertise.

Perry is the Chair of WinSport which manages the legacy assets and programs of the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics and is a member of the Advisory Board of the Samara Centre for Democracy, a non-profit organization dedicated to strengthening Canada’s democracy. He is a past member of the Alberta Securities Commission Advisory Committee, a past Co-Chair of the Pipestone Securities Law Conference and a past director of Alpine Canada, the governing body for alpine ski racing in Canada.

A former international ski racer, Perry remains active in skiing.

Perry is a graduate of McGill University, BA (Economics), 1979, with great distinction, and Osgoode Hall Law School, LLB, 1982.

He is a frequent speaker and has chaired national and international conferences on a variety of topics. Perry speaks French and German.

Speakers:

David Dodge O.C.
Former Governor of the Bank of Canada

During a distinguished career in the federal public service, Mr. Dodge held senior positions in the Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the Anti-Inflation Board, and the Department of Employment and Immigration. After serving in a number of increasingly senior positions at the Department of Finance, including that of G-7 Deputy, he was Deputy Minister of Finance from 1992 to 1997. In that role, he served as a member of the Bank of Canada’s Board of Directors.

In 1998 he was appointed Deputy Minister of Health, a position he held until his appointment as Governor of the Bank of Canada.

Mr. Dodge, appointed Governor of the Bank of Canada, effective 1 February 2001 for a term of seven years, retired on 31 January 2008. From July 2008 to June 2014, he served as Chancellor of Queen’s University. From 2009 to 2015, he was a member of the board of directors of Canadian Utilities Limited, ATCO Limited and the Bank of Nova Scotia.

Mr. Dodge is Senior Advisor at Bennett Jones LLP one of Canada’s leading law firms. He also serves on the board of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, and Chairs the National Council of the C.D. Howe Institute.

A native of Toronto, Mr. Dodge received a bachelor’s degree (honours) from Queen’s University, and a PhD in economics from Princeton.

During his academic career, he taught economics at Queen’s University; at the School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University; at the Faculty of Commerce at the University of British Columbia; and at Simon Fraser University. He also served as Director of the International Economics Program of the Institute for Research on Public Policy. Mr. Dodge has been awarded honorary degrees from a number of Canadian universities. In 2009, he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.

Curtis Stange
President & CEO, ATB Financial

If there’s one thing that 30-plus years in the financial industry in Canada has taught Curtis Stange, it’s that people are at the heart of everything. It’s with courage, disciplined thought and precise action that Curtis leads 5,000 team members at ATB Financial as President & CEO. ATB is Alberta’s largest financial institution—and the 8th largest in Canada by assets with more than $55 billion—and provides personal, business, agriculture, corporate, investment banking, and wealth management services to over 800,000 customers.

Curtis has led teams across diverse geographic markets and through various economic cycles. He has touched every major province in the country—always with an inquisitive nature and a desire to get to know the people and places around him.

Alberta, with its broad diversity in both people and landscapes, is where Curtis calls home. Here, at ATB, he created a new line of business focused on Alberta entrepreneurs and played a key role in the transformation of ATB’s banking systems—the company’s biggest technology challenge in a generation.

Curtis is a proud recipient of the Order of Athabasca University for his public service work and is a Stanford alumnus. Curtis serves on the Alberta Business Council, Edmonton International Airport and Visa Canada advisory boards, the Stars board and is co-chair of the Children’s Wish Foundation. He’s also a strong advocate for mental health as an active member of the Alberta Government’s Mental Health Advisory Council.

Anthony Viel
CEO, Deloitte Canada

Anthony Viel became the Chief Executive Officer of Deloitte Canada in June, 2019. His vision for the firm reflects a commitment to pursue bold and focused growth choices to make a better Canada and Chile for our clients and our communities. Central to these choices is increasing Deloitte Canada’s ability to continually apply disruptive thinking to ourselves and our clients, and by elevating the firm’s partners and people to reach their full potential.

Nancy Southern
Chair & Chief Executive Officer, ATCO Group
Executive Chair, Canadian Utilities Limited

Nancy Southern is Chair & Chief Executive Officer of ATCO, as well as Executive Chair of Canadian Utilities Limited, an ATCO company. Reporting to the Boards of Directors, she has full responsibility for executing the strategic direction for both companies, and for the ongoing operations of ATCO.

In addition to her business leadership, Ms. Southern has long played a leading role in advocating on social issues of global importance – most notably, the rights of Indigenous peoples and the role of women in business. She is an Honorary Chief of the Kainai (Blood Tribe of Alberta) and was given the name Aksistoowa’paakii, or Brave Woman in 2012.

Over the course of her career, Ms. Southern has served with some of the world’s most prestigious and influential organizations. She is a member of The U.S. Business Council, a member of the American Society of Corporate Executives, a Canadian Member of the Trilateral Commission and a member of the South Australian Minerals and Petroleum Expert Group. She is also a member of the Business Council of Canada, serves as Vice Chair of the Alberta Business Council and sits on the University of Calgary School of Public Policy Advisory Council. In March of 2020, Ms. Southern joined the Premier’s Economic Recovery Council with other policy and industry experts providing insight and strategies to accelerate diversification of Alberta’s economy. In October 2020, Ms. Southern was honoured with the British Empire Medal by the Queen of England for services to British equestrian, military and commercial interests in Alberta. In 2018, the University of Calgary School of Public Policy honoured Ms. Southern with the “Distinguished Policy Fellow Award”, in recognition of her lifetime commitment to Canadian public policy. Earlier that year, she received the “Canadian Business Leader Award” from the University of Alberta School of Business and its Business Advisor Council – making history as the first second-generation recipient of that honour. She was inducted as a Companion into the Canadian Business Hall of Fame in 2017. In 2016, Ms. Southern was included in Fortune’s list of the “50 Most Powerful Women” outside of the U.S. and recognized by the Financial Post Magazine’s “The Power List”.

Born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, Ms. Southern studied Economics and Commerce at the University of Calgary.

Alicia Dubois
CEO, Alberta Indigenous Opportunities Corporation

Alicia is a proud Indigenous professional who earned a B.Sc., with Distinction from the University of Lethbridge and a Juris Doctor from the University of Toronto. Alicia joined the Alberta Indigenous Opportunities Corporation from CIBC’s executive team where she developed and implemented CIBC’s Indigenous Markets strategy and framework. In this role, she established and proudly led an expert national Indigenous Markets team. At AIOC, Alicia continues her dedication to Indigenous economic prosperity and wellness by bolstering Indigenous access to capital and the economy and supporting meaningful Indigenous ownership in mid to large scale resource and related infrastructure projects.

Alicia is the Co-Chair of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business and served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Royal Ontario Museum. She actively contributes to awareness building and enhancing the positive national narrative around Indigenous finance and prosperity via speaking engagements with industry, governments and diverse audiences across the country. In 2019, Alicia was honoured with the National Aboriginal Trust Officers Association’s inaugural Award of Distinction for her steadfast commitment to Indigenous prosperity and self-determination. Prior to her career in Indigenous financial services, Alicia practiced law at Alberta Justice, ENMAX Corporation and Native Child and Family Services of Toronto.

Don Lindsay
President & CEO, Teck Resources Ltd.

Don Lindsay is currently Chair of the Business Council of Canada and a Director of Manulife Financial Corporation. He also serves on the Board of Directors for BC Children’s Hospital Foundation, Alpine Canada, York House School, and is an Honorary Governor of the Royal Ontario Museum.

He recently completed a three-year term as Chair of the International Council on Mining and Metals, and was previously Chair of the Board of Governors for Mining and Metals at the World Economic Forum. Prior to joining Teck, Mr. Lindsay was President of CIBC World Markets Inc., led the bank’s Investment and Corporate Banking Division, the Asia Pacific Region, and was founder of CIBC’s Global Mining Group. He is a graduate of Queens University (B.Sc., Hons.) and Harvard Business School (MBA), and has been the recipient of an Honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of Windsor and Honorary Doctorate of Technology from the British Columbia Institute of Technology.

Ambassador Kelly Craft
Representative of the United States of America to the United Nations

Ambassador Kelly Craft was nominated by President Donald J. Trump to the position of Representative of the United States of America to the United Nations on February 22, 2019 and was confirmed to that position by the United States Senate on July 31, 2019. She was formally sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence on September 10, 2019.

Ambassador Craft served as the United States Ambassador to Canada from October 2017 until assumption of her USUN role in 2019. During her time as Ambassador, she worked through the complex revisiting of the NAFTA treaty, known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement or USMCA.

Ambassador Kelly Craft is a leader, entrepreneur and philanthropist who has made community service and improving education the cornerstone of her career.

As a third-generation Kentuckian, Ambassador Craft served her community by assuming several leadership roles with the Salvation Army of Lexington and the Center for Rural Development, a non-profit dedicated to the economic development of rural Kentucky. She also served in similar roles in the cultural leadership of her state, working with the Kentucky Arts Council and the United Way of the Bluegrass.

With a deep commitment to education, Ambassador Craft has served on the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees and co-founded the Morehead State University Craft Academy for Excellence in Science and Mathematics.

In 2007, President George W. Bush appointed Ambassador Craft as an alternate delegate to the United Nations General Assembly.

In the private sector, Craft founded a successful marketing and business advisory firm providing leadership advice to businesses across the country.

Ambassador Craft is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and holds an Honorary Doctorate from Morehead State University. She and her husband, Joe Craft, who is also native Kentuckian, share six children and eleven grandchildren.

David Frum
Social & Political Commentator
Senior Editor at The Atlantic

One of the most influential political analysts of our time, David Frum brings a rational conscience into the mainstream and the often-polarized world of American politics. He helps crystallize what the current political climate will mean for your business or organization – for the good, the bad and the future. As the Senior Editor at The Atlantic, David’s commentary on social and political issues generates thought-provoking discussions throughout America and around the world.

Whether it is the latest foreign policy debate or the inner workings of the White House, David Frum offers refreshing and clear insights of complicated issues of the day. He is currently a senior editor at The Atlantic, and the author of New York Times Bestseller Trumpocracy: The Corruption of the American Republic among numerous other titles. He appears often on MSNBC, BBC, CBC, and CNN.

As a speaker, David has the rare ability to engage audiences at a deeper level: that of their belief systems. Even if you do not agree with his views, David’s encyclopedic knowledge of hot topic issues is unmatched. Audiences appreciate his thought-provoking style and ability to boil complex subjects into digestible bites. David’s deeply researched and thoughtful talks are also laugh-out-loud funny. In his quest for the truth, David has been a long-time advocate for shaking up the polarized U.S. political system. He provides fascinating insight into what political outcomes mean for specific audiences around the world.

David served as a speechwriter and special assistant to President George W. Bush, as a senior foreign policy adviser to the Rudy Giuliani presidential campaign in 2007-2008, as a director of the Republican Jewish Coalition, and as chairman of the board of the United Kingdom’s leading center-right think tank, Policy Exchange. In a 2016 essay for the The Atlantic Frum explained that he would vote for Hillary Clinton to stop Donald Trump. In a 2017 profile, GQ magazine described Frum “first among equals” among “Never Trump” Republicans. He is now at work on his tenth book, about how to renew American world leadership after Trump.

Premier Jason Kenney
Government of Alberta

Premier Kenney committed himself to public life in the early 1990s as President of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, where he fought hard for lower taxes and fiscal responsibility.

In 1997, at the age of 29, Calgary voters elected him to Parliament where he worked to unite conservatives nationally. During his time in Parliament, Jason was voted the “best overall,” “hardest working,” and “most knowledgeable” MP by his colleagues in Maclean’s Magazine’s annual survey.

Mr. Kenney served as Minister for Multiculturalism for eight years in Prime Minister Harper’s government, reaching out to new Canadians as a strong advocate for pluralism. He became Canada’s longest serving Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, welcoming over 1.3 million newcomers to Canada while implementing comprehensive reforms to Canada’s immigration, refugee and citizenship programs, leading the National Post to call him “perhaps Canada’s best immigration minister ever”.

From 2013 to 2015 Mr. Kenney served as Minister of Employment and Social Development, where he implemented a “skills for jobs” strategy to increase support for skilled trades and apprenticeship learning. In 2015, he served as Minister of National Defence, deploying Canada’s military to combat ISIS in the Middle East, and to Ukraine to help modernize that country’s defences.

In 2017 Mr. Kenney was elected Leader of Alberta’s Progressive Conservative Party with a mandate to reunite the province’s divided free enterprise political movement. He then helped to lead the creation of the new United Conservative Party, and was elected its Leader, becoming Leader of the Opposition.

In April, 2019 he led his party to an election victory with 55% of the popular vote in a campaign focused on economic growth, and advocating a fair deal for Alberta in the Canadian federation. He was sworn-in as Alberta’s 18th Premier on April 30, 2019.

Brian Lee Crowley
Managing Director, Macdonald-Laurier Institute

Brian Lee Crowley is Managing Director of the Macdonald-Laurier Institute. With a well-regarded record in the think tank world, Dr. Crowley was also the founder of the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies (AIMS) in Halifax, one of the country’s leading regional think tanks.

Dr. Crowley is an authority when it comes to mining and natural resource development. His scholarship on this sector includes a litany of studies, commentaries, op-eds, and more. He has particular expertise as it pertains to the role this industry is playing in reshaping the relationship between the government and Indigenous people.

Over his long career, Dr. Crowley has distinguished himself as an accomplished author, a former Clifford Clark Visiting Economist with the federal Department of Finance, and as a frequent media commentator with expertise related to natural resources, Canada-US relations, foreign affairs, regional development policy, healthcare and more. Most recently, Dr. Crowley authored the acclaimed new book, “Gardeners vs. Designers: Understanding the Great Fault Line in Canadian Politics.”

Ted Morton
Executive Fellow, The School of Public Policy and Professor Emeritus, Political Science, University of Calgary

Dr. Morton was the MLA for Foothills-Rocky View from 2004-2012. During this time, he served as Minister of Energy (2011-12); Minister of Finance (2010); and Minister of Sustainable Resources Development (2006-2009). After politics, Ted was Senior Fellow, Energy and Environment, at the Manning Foundation from 2013-2017.

Ted has written and edited six books, two of which won book prizes. In 1995 Ted was awarded the Bora Laskin Fellowship in Human Rights. In 2018 he received the Canadian Taxpayers’ Federation Tax-Fighter Award. In 2001 Ted was recognized in MacLean’s Guide to Canadian Universities as one of 20 most popular professors at University of Calgary.

Rex Murphy
Social Commentator, Editorialist & Distinct Canadian Voice

Rex Murphy is a trusted face and voice across Canadian media. His intellect and biting humour strike through the heart of profound political and social issues. Currently he writes and reports for CBC’s The National and is a columnist in the National Post.

Canadians are treated to weekly commentary from Rex on CBC’s The National along with his Saturday column in the National Post. He’s also acted as an editorial contributor to CBC Radio’s Definitely Not the Opera. For over 20 years he was the host and moderator of CBC Radio’s Cross Country Checkup. The show brought over 1 million listeners and at times 15,000 callers wanting to join in discussions.

As a speaker, Rex radiates intelligence and trustworthiness. His endearing style brings forth a sarcastic intellect and deep insight into issues affecting individuals and businesses. Audiences can expect to be simultaneously informed and entertained by Rex’s provocative commentary.

He knows what makes Canadians tick, and what drives our political and social affairs. Rex makes us important and reminds us we have culture beyond hockey. His thought-provoking, sometimes stinging commentary and original insights are delivered through a vocabulary to make Webster’s consider updating.

A Rhodes Scholar, Rex was born and raised in St. John’s, Nfld., where he graduated from Memorial University. He went to Oxford University, along with former U.S. President Bill Clinton. Rex later ran twice in provincial elections and lost both times. Maybe he was
too honest?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.