CAEM Exposition Recovery Taskforce Press Release

CAEM Exposition Recovery Taskforce 
Press Release


Leaders from across the country unite to lay the groundwork for the reopening of trade and consumer shows

Toronto, ON: In response to how COVID-19 has affected the exposition industry, The Canadian Association of Exposition Management (CAEM) has officially announced the formation of the Exposition Recovery Taskforce. The purpose of this taskforce is to put a plan and proposal together for the responsible, safe and effective reopening of our industry.

The taskforce includes leaders from all areas of the exposition sector: facilities, suppliers to the industry, and producers of trade and consumer shows. The group will work towards establishing industry guidelines and recommendations, specific to the expositions sector, in order to demonstrate to policymakers, as well as the public, that we have a clear plan for how to operate, moving forward.  The idea is to unify the exposition industry and work together towards the reopening and recovery of trade and consumer shows.

“The recovery of our industry will ultimately be dictated by the public feeling safe to gather again in groups,” said Bianca Kennedy, Chair of CAEM’s Exposition Recovery Taskforce. “This taskforce has the ability to showcase thought leadership and develop best practices, in order to demonstrate that trade and consumer shows can implement the necessary protective measures mandated by the provinces.”

The purpose of the Exposition Recovery Taskforce includes, but is not limited to:

  • Gathering and aggregating research on the economic impact of expositions;
  • Developing Best Practices Guidelines for the responsible, safe and effective reopening of trade and consumer shows in Canada that reflect a national overview, while also addressing individual provincial guidelines and reopening plans;
  • Collaborating with other industry associations within the MICE sector in order to ensure clarity, alignment and a unified message for when we approach government; and;
  • Lobbying government to approve the guidelines for the reopening of expositions.

CAEM’s Exposition Recovery Taskforce includes leaders from across the country with a wealth of experience in the Canadian exposition industry. The taskforce members are:

  • Julien Bergeron, Représentant aux commandites, Division des ventes et de la promotion, Centre de foires d'ExpoCité
  • Kevin Blackburn, Managing Partner, Canwest Productions Inc.
  • Fred Cox, President, National Event Management
  • Arlindo Gomes, Vice President, Venue Management, Edmonton Economic Development
  • Trevor Graham, Chief Operating Officer, The International Centre
  • Clark Grue, Chair, Meetings Mean Business
  • Lorenz Hassenstein, President & CEO, Metro Toronto Convention Centre
  • Jeff Hill, Sales Manager – Trade, Consumer & E-Sports, Vancouver Convention Centre
  • Wendell Howes, President, Master Promotions Ltd.
  • Jill Kivett, Regional Vice President, Marketplace Events
  • Mike Lecour, Executive Vice President, GES (ret)
  • Elaine Legault, Director, Events & Client Experience, Palais des congrès de Montréal
  • Sonia Moffatt, CEM, General Manager Toronto, Freeman
  • Greg Newton, General Manager, BMO Centre
  • Duncan Payne, Managing Director, Building Industry and Land Development Asociation  
  • Ron Pellerine, General Manager, Metro Toronto Convention Centre
  • Laura Purdy, CEM, CMM, General Manager, Exhibition Place/Enercare Centre/Beanfield Centre
  • Nick Samain, CEM, Vice President, Energy, DMG events
  • Anita Schachter, President & CEO, Canadian Gift Association
  • Barry Smith, Executive Director, Convention Centres of Canada
  • Claire Smith, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Vancouver Convention Centre
  • Patti Stewart, Executive Vice President, Informa Canada
  • Ralph Strachan, President & CEO, The Stronco Group of Companies
  • Bradley Styba, CEM, Director, Events & Business Development, Tradex
  • Troy Taylor, Vice President, Operations, Restaurants Canada
  • Linda Waddell, President & Show Director, Canadian Boat Shows
  • Chair – Bianca Kennedy, 1st Vice President, CAEM
  • Co-Chair – Catherine Macnutt, President, CAEM

“Business events serve as an immense driver of economic growth and innovation,” said Catherine MacNutt, CAEM President. “By uniting as an industry, and by collaborating with our strategic partners across the MICE sector, we can present a unified voice, to advocate for face-to-face events in Canada. I am convinced we will have the best success if we work together to advocate for our industry.”

The taskforce committee's first meeting is scheduled and confirmed for Monday, May 11, 2020. This taskforce will be looking to CAEM members for help collecting data, as well as consulting with the industry on proposed guidelines and sharing regular updates on progress being made.

About CAEM: CAEM is the national association for Canadian professionals involved in the production, management, and planning of trade and consumer shows. CAEM works on behalf of the exposition industry to provide targeted education and networking, health and safety guidelines, best practices, and positions on regulatory issues.

For further information, please contact:

CAEM Office
[email protected]