General Rick Hillier to give presentation in Halifax

    HALIFAX, June 9 /CNW/ - General Rick Hillier will give one of his last
speaking engagements as Canada's Chief of Defence Staff in Halifax on Tuesday,
June 10, at 1:00pm at the Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel. General Hillier
will speak to more than 270 public relations professionals from across Canada
during the Canadian Public Relations Society's (CPRS) annual national
conference being held from June 8-10, 2008.

    DATE: June 10, 2008.

    Information on General Hillier, along with other speakers presenting on
    this day, is attached.

    PLACE: Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel.

    Tuesday, June 10, 9:45 a.m.
    Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Nova Scotia Room

    Discussion Panel: Janet MacMillan (moderator), Kelliann Dean,
    Judy Steele, Simon Kennedy, Catherine Woodman (panellists).

    "The Deciders" Why public relations is a great foundation for strong

    When seeking out business or government leaders, organizations
traditionally opted for lawyers, engineers or career professionals. In recent
years, professionals with a background or training in public relations are
increasingly being asked to assume broader leadership roles beyond public
    Listen to some of Canada's leading corporate, non-profit and government
decision-makers discuss the importance of their public relations background to
reaching the top of their organizations.
    Janet MacMillan is principal of MT&L Halifax. Kelliann Dean is Deputy
Minister of Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage and former
Vice President, Business Development, Bank of Canada. Judy Steele is vice
president of Emera Energy (former partner Ernest and Young, past national
chair, Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. Simon Kennedy is Deputy Secretary to
the Cabinet (Operations), Privy Council Office. Catherine Woodman is CEO
United Way and former Vice President, Human Resources, Maritime Life.

    Tuesday, June 10, 10:45a.m.
    Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax A

    Breakout Session Speaker: Peter Spurway:
    Truth - solid, liquid or gas?

    Peter Spurway is Vice President, Corporate Communications and Public
Affairs for Halifax International Airport Authority. This interactive session
will pose these and other questions and challenge participants to consider
-and perhaps reconsider-their relationship with truth.
    Practitioners, every day, must make decisions about how a version of
facts-their version of the truth - will be conveyed to audiences. The
objective of the session will be to challenge and engage the audience in a
discussion of just what is the truth, the parameters of truth, and how far
facts can be bent in order to deliver a message to persuade an audience to a
viewpoint, before a line is crossed into distortion and a lessening of truth.

    Tuesday, June 10, 10:45a.m.
    Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax B

    Breakout Session Speakers: Amanda Brewer and Brendan Hodgson:
    Introducing Web 2.0: How Blogs, Wikis, YouTube and Facebook are Changing
    Emerging Internet technologies

    Amanda Brewer brings 11 years of communications and public relations
experience to Hill & Knowlton. During her career, she has provided counsel to
both private and public sector clients in regulated industries such as
broadcasting, mining and metals, and financial services, with an emphasis on
corporate reputation building, internal communications and issues management.

    Brendan Hodgson

    As Vice President of Hill & Knowlton Canada's Digital Communications
group, Brendan provides strategic counsel and leadership on digital
communications strategy, including social media, online marketing, crisis and
stakeholder relations, issues management, corporate and public affairs.

    Tuesday, June 10, 10:45a.m.
    Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax C

    Breakout Session Speaker: Susan Sommers:
    Marketing Communications

    One of Canada's leading marketing and media relations experts, Susan
Sommers has headed her own marketing and media relations firm, Susan Sommers +
Associates, for the past 25 years. She has created award-winning marketing and
media campaigns for hundreds of clients and entertained and educated audiences
throughout North America.
    At the age of 60, Susan completed her first Marathon and, since then, has
completed another full Marathon and 8 half-marathons. She is a popular
motivational speaker who combines humour, personal stories, and passion into
programs that have been described as 'entertaining', 'inspiring' and

    Tuesday, June 10, 1:00 p.m.
    Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Nova Scotia Room

    Conference Keynote Speaker:

    General Rick Hillier

    Born in Newfoundland and Labrador, General Rick Hillier joined the
Canadian Forces as soon as he could. Having enrolled in the Canadian Forces in
1973 through the Regular Officer Training Plan program, he graduated from
Memorial University of Newfoundland in 1975 with a Bachelor of Science Degree.
After completing his armour officer classification training, he joined his
first regiment, the 8th Canadian Hussars (Princess Louise's) in Petawawa,
Ontario. Subsequently, he served with, and later commanded, the Royal Canadian
Dragoons in Canada and Germany.
    In May 2003 General Hillier was appointed as Commander of the Army and
subsequently, in October 2003, he was selected as the Commander of the
NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Kabul, Afghanistan.
    General Hillier was promoted to his present rank and assumed duties as the
Chief of the Defence Staff on 4 February 2005.

    Tuesday, June 10, 2:30 p.m.
    Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax A

    Breakout Session Speaker: John Clayton:
    Let's Talk: Building Stakeholder Relations through Consultation and

    John Clayton is Division Head, Public Affairs for Imperial Tobacco Canada
Limited. During this presentation, learn how Let's Talk embodied a shift in
the business approach from "Decide, Implement, Defend" to "Listen, Decide,
Deliver". This presentation relates mainly to external relations, although it
also contains elements of internal communications and corporate governance.

    Tuesday, June 10, 2:30 p.m.
    Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax B

    Breakout Session Speakers: Dr. Amy Thurlow and Professor Margaret C.
    Leading through Communications

    Dr. Amy Thurlow has been teaching public relations and business
communication for the past nine years. Before joining the Mount Saint Vincent
University faculty in 2005, she taught communications at the Fred C. Manning
School of Business at Acadia University. Prior to that, she was the program
coordinator for the Advanced Diploma in Public Relations at the Nova Scotia
Community College where she was responsible for program delivery and
    Professor Margaret C. McKee teaches public relations in both the
undergraduate and graduate programs at Mount Saint Vincent University. She
holds a BPR from MSVU and an MBA from the Joseph L. Rotman School of
Management at the University of Toronto. Margaret is completing a PhD at the
Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary's University in Halifax. She was
awarded a Social Studies and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Doctoral
Fellowship to conduct a dissertation study exploring the relationship between
transformational leadership and employee well-being.

    Tuesday, June 10, 2:30 p.m.
    Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax C

    Breakout Session Speakers: Dana Phillip Doiron: Planning to Survive:
    Issues and Crises

    Dana Philip Doiron is managing director of Partners Strategy Group. Issues
Management is identifying weaknesses, problems, and challenges with strengths,
opportunity, and advantage-and doing something with them.
    Crisis management is preparing to bind potentially fatal wounds, some of
them self-inflicted, others simply bad luck. It involves analysis of what
could go wrong and designing flexible responses to deal with them.

For further information:

For further information: Pat Brownlow, Media Relations, (902) 422-8611,
(902) 430-7227

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