The Future of Public Relations Looks Bright with Illuminate 2017


Canada's best communicators will gather in Kelowna, B.C. May 28-30, to shine a light on fake news, Fentanyl, Fort McMurray and more, at the CPRS National Conference.

TORONTO, May 8, 2017 /CNW/ - The 2017 CPRS National Conference, Illuminate, is being held May 28 – 30, in Kelowna, B.C. Hundreds of delegates will gather to discuss the impact public relations has had on today's most talked about issues and, in some cases, vice versa.

Topics being examined include the rise of fake news, the national Fentanyl crisis, the aftermath of the Fort McMurray wild fires and the importance of reconciliation between Canada and its First Nations communities.    

 "The National Conference is more than just our annual professional development retreat. It's also where CPRS Members go to discuss important issues that affect both our industry and the nation as a whole," said Cam McAlpine, APR, Chair of the Local Advisory Committee for Illuminate 2017. "This year, we face the daunting task of trying to figure out how to repair the damage caused by the rise of fake news, but with the united efforts of passionate delegates from across the country, Illuminate will be an important step towards a brighter future for the PR industry."

Comprising 25 separate sessions, including a plenary discussion to develop strategies for contending with the fake news crisis, Illuminate 2017 continues CPRS' history of welcoming thought leaders in public relations and international public figures who embody its core values. Past speakers include Olympic athletes, award-winning journalists, CEOs and the who's who of international communicators. This year's program features:

  • Peter Shankman, ShankMinds Business Masterminds, who'll explain why the days of PR people simply extolling the clients' virtues are over and what he thinks the future of PR will look like.
  • Mark Ragan, Ragan Communications Inc., who'll reprise his Brand Journalism workshop, previously hosted by CPRS societies across Canada, in which delegates will learn the principles of brand journalism and how to apply them effectively in their careers.
  • The Diana and Charles Tisdall Lecture in Communications, featuring Marie Wilson, PhD, discussing her work on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC), whose mission is to develop a mutually beneficial relationship between Canada and its First Nations peoples based on trust, respect and reconciliation.
  • Erica Tao, Department of Canadian Heritage and Perry Bolt, Canada 150 Federal Secretariat, highlighting the work involved in the successful branding of the Canada 150 campaign, and how the use of online consultations and crowd sourcing sparked engagement from coast to coast to coast.
  • And many more!

"For nearly seven decades, CPRS has been dedicated to promoting the ethical practice of public relations and this year, faced with alternative facts and fake news, our efforts are more important than ever," said Kim Blanchette, APR, FCPRS, National President, Canadian Public Relations Society. "With its amazing lineup of speakers and breakout sessions, this year's Conference illustrates what CPRS stands for, as the leading association of public relations professionals in Canada."

Illuminate won't be all serious business, though, thanks in part to co-MCs, Jan Enns and Matt Wood, who will lighten the mood as they lead delegates through the three-day schedule. Both members of host local society Northern Lights, their unique combination of personality, professional experience and knowledge of both Kelowna and CPRS make them the perfect duo to guide delegates through the day, before segueing into nightly festivities, when the fun really begins.

From Sunday's opening reception at BNA Brewing Co., Monday's excursion to Summerhill Pyramid Winery, and, the pièce de résistance, the annual Awards of Excellence Gala, Illuminate 2017 will let delegates celebrate their accomplishments, reconnect with old friends and meet new colleagues, while experiencing the sights and sounds of one of Western Canada's most beautiful (and fun) regions. 

Media opportunities:
Members of the media can participate in #CPRS2017 and have the opportunity to interview speakers in our dedicated media room.

CPRS would like to thank its partners for their generous support:

  • CNW, A Cision Company – Gold Partner: Exclusive Workshop Partner
  • Nasdaq – Gold Partner: Monday Evening Excursion to Summerhill Pyramid Winery
  • Argyle Public Relationships™ - Silver Partner: Awards of Excellence Gala
  • The Canadian Press – Silver Partner: Conference Photography Services
  • – Silver Partner: Monday Luncheon Keynote, Peter Shankman
  • Fifth Story – Silver Partner: #AlternativePR Plenary Session
  • McMaster-Syracuse Master of Communications Management (MCM)
    Program – Silver Partner: Diana and Charles Tisdall Lecture in Communications
  • Meltwater – Silver Partner: Sunday Night Opening Reception at BNA Brewing Co.
  • NATIONAL Public Relations – Bronze Partner: Champagne Reception
  • Leger – Bronze Partner
  • Agility PR Solutions – In kind  

About the Canadian Public Relations Society:
Founded in 1948, the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS) is a not-for-profit organization whose members are engaged in the practice, management or teaching of public relations. Members work to maintain the highest standards and to share a uniquely Canadian experience in public relations. CPRS is a federation of more than 2,500 members across 14 Member Societies based in major cities or organized province-wide.

SOURCE Canadian Public Relations Society

For further information: For more information and to arrange accreditation please contact: Dan LaBelle, Specialist, Communications and Events, Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS), W - 416-239-7034, C - 416-917-1794

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