Naheed Nenshi takes centre stage to share insights on citizenship and inclusion

Nenshi named 13th speaker in the Institute for Canadian Citizenship's LaFontaine-Baldwin Symposium lecture series

TORONTO, March 11, 2015 /CNW/ - The Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC) has selected Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi as its 13th LaFontaine-Baldwin Symposium speaker, co-presented with the Stratford Festival. Nenshi will share his thoughts on citizenship and the importance of inclusion September 19, 2015, in Stratford; tickets are now on sale.

Wildly popular, Nenshi is known globally for his passion for making cities, in particular Calgary, work better. The ICC has timed the release of this announcement with what many now call Canada's own Independence Day. On March 11, 1848, a reform government headed by Louis-Hippolyte LaFontaine and Robert Baldwin was sworn in, marking the birth of democracy in Canada and the advent of Responsible Government. The Symposium pays homage to the accomplishments of LaFontaine and Baldwin. Their reforms created the roots of modern Canada by moving government toward the concepts of complexity and diversity.

"Each year we invite a speaker who can extend our conversation in new directions with original and inclusive ideas," said Charlie Foran, CEO of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship. "Last year, visionary Robert Lepage took the ICC's dialogue about belonging into the realm of the deeply personal and artistic. This year, Naheed Nenshi will bring the force of his thinking about citizenship and cities, along with his remarkable personal narrative, to the fore, ensuring another important Symposium conversation about who we are as a country."

"I am thrilled and honoured to be the 2015 LaFontaine-Baldwin Symposium lecturer," said Naheed Nenshi. "This is a unique opportunity to celebrate citizenship — that active participation in society by both new and not-so-new Canadians that makes our communities thrive."

Starting in 2013, the Institute for Canadian Citizenship partnered with the Stratford Festival to position its Symposium centre stage within the Stratford Festival Forum, a series exploring the principal themes found in the Festival's theatrical productions.

"Our partnership with the Institute for Canadian Citizenship reflects the Festival's role as a key part of the cultural fabric of our nation," said Antoni Cimolino, Artistic Director of the Stratford Festival. "We're honoured to have Mayor Nenshi give this year's Symposium keynote because he represents the same innovative, community-building spirit, and the same vision of Canada as a leader in the world, on which our Festival was founded."

Symposium tickets are $65 and include access to Nenshi's keynote as well as an intimate post-lecture roundtable discussion hosted by Naheed Nenshi, John Ralston Saul, Adrienne Clarkson and Charlie Foran — ICC's Co-Chairs and CEO. Tickets to the lecture are $25; a discounted rate of $15 is available for new citizen members of the ICC's Cultural Access Pass program, students, groups and arts workers. Visit for full event details, including how to purchase tickets.

The Institute for Canadian Citizenship's LaFontaine-Baldwin Symposium is a national event featuring leading Canadian and international thinkers. It challenges audiences to think about Canada's big picture by inviting them to add their voice to post-lecture roundtable discussions with the speaker and ICC leaders. Past speakers include His Highness the Aga Khan, the Honourable Louise Arbour, Georges Erasmus, the Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin and most recently, Robert Lepage.

Founded and co-chaired by the Rt. Hon. Adrienne Clarkson and John Ralston Saul, and led by Charlie Foran, the Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC) is a national, non-profit charity that helps accelerate new citizens' integration into Canadian life through original programs, collaborations and unique volunteer opportunities. While our focus is on encouraging new citizens to take their rightful place in Canada, we want all citizens – new or not – to embrace active citizenship in their daily life. For more information, visit or email Join our conversation by following us on Twitter @ICCICC.

The Stratford Festival, in picturesque Stratford, Ontario, Canada, is North America's leading classical theatre, drawing half a million visitors a year. It presents a seven-month season of a dozen plays in four venues, along with a Forum of events to enrich the play-going experience. With the works of Shakespeare at its core, the Festival features classics, contemporary dramas, musical theatre and new plays. It presented its first season in 1953, using an innovative thrust stage that revolutionized Shakespearean performance in our time and inspired the design of several other major venues worldwide. Visit for more information.

SOURCE Institute for Canadian Citizenship

For further information: Jess Duerden, Institute for Canadian Citizenship, (416) 593-6998 ext. 225,; Ann Swerdfager, Stratford Festival, (519) 271-4040 ext. 2297,


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