5:00 P.M. - 8:00 P.M. | Opening Reception & Registration


7:00 A.M. - 8:00 A.M. | Registration & Breakfast

8:00 A.M. - 8:30 A.M. | Opening Remarks

A welcome message from EQUS CEO, Patricia Bourne

8:30 A.M. - 9:30 A.M. | Keynote Presentation - Unleash Your Disruptive Behavior

 Presented by Graham Sherman - Owner, Tool Shed Brewing Company

The concept of “Disruptive Marketing” has become so buzz-wordy that we often mistake simply being “innovative” with being disrupting.

Truly standing out in a tough economy, against monster-sized competition requires the use of part of our brains we don’t often access. In fact, we’ve been taught to suppress our disruptive behaviour since childhood — but now it’s time to harness those powers of disruption for the benefit of successes as entrepreneurs.

Graham Sherman has been shaking things up since he worked on private-sector government and military contracts throughout Afghanistan, to when he began brewing beer and changing the game for small breweries across Alberta.

Tool Shed Brewing Company’s unique approach to disrupting the market has led to it being nominated for Canadian Entrepreneur of the Year; being named as Calgary’s “Top 40 under 40”; and the brewery’s position in the top five percent of breweries in North America.

9:30 A.M. - 9:45 A.M. | Break

9:45 A.M. - 10:45 A.M. | Keynote Presentation - Municipalities and Resilience

 Presented by Marie-Jose (MJ) Croonen, Vice President Energy, AECOM

Resilience planning strengthens a community’s preparedness in the face of numerous risks. Areas essential for resilience planning typically encompass economic, environmental, and social issues. These can include extreme weather events, infrastructure conditions, power events, population/demographic shifts, industry growth/decline, public health considerations, mobility/transit, and others. Such drivers of change impose challenges of varying degrees. Resilience planning allows communities to better prepare for the specific risks to which they are most susceptible.

As an increasing amount of resources and number of initiatives focus on addressing urban resilience, the resilience gap widens between those urban areas and small to medium-size communities. The growing gap shows a disregard for, or unawareness of, the vital role resilience planning plays in population growth and community development for small to medium- size communities. Without holistic resilience planning that accounts for funding strategies and partnerships targeted at addressing needs, these communities may face challenges in attracting and retaining people and businesses to live within them. This can further exacerbate issues of declining population that many communities face and make them increasingly vulnerable to resilience threats.

AECOM has developed a Resiliency Roadmap which will enable communities to develop their own scalable resilience plans that represent their unique interests and priorities with a particular focus on energy efficiency and reducing energy cost burdens for their most vulnerable community members.

10:45 A.M. - 11:00 P.M. | Break

11:00 A.M. - 12:00 P.M. | Panel Presentation

 Innovation: Electricity Generation and Distribution


12:00 P.M. - 12:45 P.M. | Lunch & Networking

12:45 P.M. - 1:45 P.M. | Keynote Presentation - Rural Broadband: How Do We Get There from Here?

 Presented by Larry Thompson, CEO, Vantage Point Solutions

No one argues the importance of broadband access. But HOW to provide access – especially in rural areas – isn’t as straightforward. Larry Thompson, a licensed professional engineer, is extremely familiar with this challenge: He is the founder and CEO of a firm that has built tens of thousands of miles of fiber optic broadband networks across America. Here he lends this experience to help answer the question, “How do we move forward?” Along with a high-level description of network architecture options and the most common network business strategies, Larry will also discuss the various factors that affect both urban and rural broadband feasibility. He will also outline the funding options available in America and the most practical first (and next!) steps for closing the rural digital divide. 

1:45 P.M. - 2:10 P.M. | Break

2:10 P.M. - 3:10 P.M. | Panel Presentation

 The Path Forward for Rural Alberta

What will help with the vitality of Rural Alberta? What do businesses need to locate in rural Alberta? What do our Agricultural businesses need? Rural Broadband can change the way people think about living and working in rural Alberta. What else stands in the way of a vibrant rural Alberta? What do we need to do to create the future we want?


  • Stephen Bull, Senior Assistant Deputy Minister and Corporate CIO, Government of Alberta


3:10 P.M. - 5:10 P.M. | Facilitated Small Table Discussion

 Economic Development

Members are free to purchase electricity services from a retailer of their choice. For a list of retailers, visit http://www.ucahelps.alberta.ca or call 310.4822 (toll free in Alberta).