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Marianne Ackerman is a novelist, playwright, screenwriter and journalist. Co-founder of Montréal’s Theatre 1774, she has written a dozen plays. Her film credits include directing and writing the docu-drama White Brush, Red Wine: Death in a Paris Café, for the Bravo Arts and Entertainment channel, shown on TéléQuébec and at festivals in Montréal and Paris. She also wrote episodes of The Hunger for the American network Showtime and has recently completed Double Bed, a screenplay based on her stage play Blue Valentine. Her novels include the best-selling Jump, which takes place during the heady days surrounding the 1995 Referendum in Québec, and Matters of Hart - 2005. Set in Montréal, Los Angeles and Vancouver, Matters of Hart is a picaresque tale about the burdens and joys of brotherhood. Both novels are published by McArthur & Co. of Toronto. An award-winning journalist (Nathan Cohen Award for theatre criticism, 1985 and 1988), Marianne Ackerman writes for several Canadian and British publications. She lives in Montréal with her husband, Gwyn Campbell.

Melissa Aronczyk is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University. Her current research focuses on the phenomenon of “nation branding” – a globally reproduced strategy to make nations distinctive using the tools and techniques of the advertising trade. Her work has appeared in Invisible Culture, the Toronto Star, Maisonneuve magazine, and the recent Routledge volume Practicing Culture, edited by Craig Calhoun and Richard Sennett. She is also an editor at the Social Science Research Council.

Originally from Regina, Saskatchewan, Joya Balfour has worked in the entertainment industry in Los Angeles since 2000. From 2000-2005 she worked as an Online Producer at Warner Bros., bringing such brands as Harry Potter and Looney Tunes to the Web. Since 2006, Ms. Balfour has been a Producer at NBC.com, where she manages the official websites for "The Office", "My Name Is Earl" and "Last Comic Standing". Her work on "The Office" earned her a 2007 Webby Award for Best Television Website. A McGill graduate, Ms. Balfour holds an M.A. in Communications and a B.A. in English (Cultural Studies).

Darin Barney is a native of Vancouver, Canada, and studied at Simon Fraser University and the University of Toronto, where he trained in political theory and received a Ph.D. in 1999. His research interests focus on the philosophy of technology, media and communication theory, and media and democracy. Barney is the author of Communication Technology: The Canadian Democratic Audit, The Network Society, and Prometheus Wired: The Hope for Democracy in the Age of Network Technology which was awarded the 2001 Award for Social and Ethical Relevance in Communication Research by the McGannon Center for Communication Research at Fordham University, selected as an Outstanding Title in political theory for 2001 by the American Library Association's Choice Reviews and a Finalist for the 2002 Harold Adams Innis book prize. In 2004, Barney was selected as one of fifteen "Leaders of Tomorrow" by the Partnership Group for Science and Engineering.

Louise Beaudoin holds a Master’s Degree in History from Laval University in Québec City. She has been executive assistant to the Québec Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Québec’s delegate general to Paris, director of distribution, marketing and international affairs for Telefilm Canada, and director general of the Société du Palais de la civilisation in Montréal. She was elected to the National Assembly as a PQ member for the riding of Chambly in 1994, and again in 1998. She has been Québec’s Minister for Canadian Intergovernmental Affairs, Minister of Culture and Communications, Minister responsible for the Charter of the French Language, Minister of International Relations, Minister responsible for La Francophonie, and Minister responsible for the Observatoire de la mondialisation. From 2004-2007, she was an Associate Professor in the Department of History and Department of Political Science at the Université du Québec à Montréal. She is currently a guest member of the Centre d’études et de relations internationales de l’Université de Montréal (CÉRIUM), and a visiting professor in Université de Montréal’s Département des littératures de langue française..

Jenny Burnman JENNY BURMAN
Jenny Burman is an Assistant Professor in the Graduate Program in Communications. She has a Ph.D. in Social and Political Thought from York University (2002). Prof. Burman is working on two major individual projects presently: the first is a book manuscript studying the traffic in goods, people and money that makes up the route joining Toronto and Jamaica (working title, Transnational Yearnings). The second, supported by a SSHRC Standard Research Grant, is entitled Mobile Citizenship, Immobilized Migrants: Detention and Deportation in Canada, Oppositional Activism in Toronto and Montréal. She was a co-investigator on the SSHRC Major Collaborative Research Initiative The Culture of Cities Project (project ended in 2006), where she also did postdoctoral research on transformations in diasporic urban culture in Canada.

Dr. Michele Byers is Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminology at Saint Mary's University, where she teaches a variety of courses about the media and popular culture. She has written and published in the area television studies, including on shows such as The O.C., Curb Your Enthusiasm, Sex and the City, Degrassi and CSI. She has edited the book Growing Up Degrassi: Television, Identity and Youth Cultures, and co-edited Dear Angela: Remembering My So-Called Life (with David Lavery). Dr. Byers received her Ph.D. from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education - University of Toronto in Sociology and Equity Studies in Education. Michele currently holds grants from SSHRC and the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute.

Fernando Castaños Zuno is a full professor and level “b” researcher in the Instituto de Investigaciones Sociales at the National Autonomous University of Mexico in Mexico City. He holds a Ph. D. from the Institute of Education at the University of London. His research focuses on discourse theory and analysis and consolidation and evolution of Mexican democracy. He is currently working on the projects “Discourse: Its Nature and Its Conditions” and “Deliberation and Democracy.” Professor Castaños Zuno has published in the Revista Mexicana de Sociología, Revista Mexicana de Opinión Pública, and the Revue de Sémantique et Programatique.

Alfonso Castellanos Ribot is a social anthropologist from Mexico. He is the coordinator of Strategic and Prospective Studies at the National Council of the Arts and Culture. Mr. Ribot is also the head of e-cultura, the Cultural Information System and the Cultural Indicators System. His recent publications include, Atlas de infraestructura cultural de México and Encuesta Nacional de Prácticas y Consumo Culturales y Encuesta Nacional de Lectura. Mr. Ribot is a consultant for UNESCO and OAS, and is a member of the International Steering Committee of Culturemondo.

Gretta Chambers is a Canadian journalist and former Chancellor of McGill University. She received a B.A. in political science from McGill University in 1947. She has worked in radio and television and has written for several newspapers and magazines. From 1966 until 1980, she was the host of the weekly CBC radio show called The Province in Print. From 1977 to 2002, she had a weekly column in The Gazette. She was Chancellor of McGill University from 1991 to 1999, the first woman to serve in this position. In 1993, she was named an Officer of the National Order of Québec. In 1994, she was made a Member of the Order of Canada and was promoted to Companion in 2000. In 2003, Martin Cauchon, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, appointed her to the Judicial Compensation and Benefits Commission, until August 31, 2007.

Andrew Cohen is a journalist and professor, whom The New York Times has called one of “Canada’s most distinguished authors.” In a career of 29 years, at home and abroad, he has written for The Washington Post, Time, The Financial Times of London, The Financial Post, The Ottawa Citizen, Saturday Night and The Globe and Mail (Toronto), where he was a member of the Editorial Board, a columnist, and a correspondent in Washington, D.C. He now writes a weekly syndicated column for CanWest Newspapers and appears on television and radio. He has won two National Newspaper Awards, three National Magazine Awards and the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal. He has also written and co-edited four bestselling books. In 2003, While Canada Slept: How We Lost Our Place in the World, was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award for Non-Fiction. His latest book is The Unfinished Canadian: The People We Are, a study of national character. Since 2001, Cohen has been a professor of journalism and international affairs at Carleton University.

Wayde Compton is a Vancouver writer whose books include 49th Parallel Psalm, Performance Bond and Bluesprint: Black British Columbian Literature and Orature. He and Jason de Couto perform turntable-based sound poetry as a duo called The Contact Zone Crew. Compton is also a co-founding member of the Hogan's Alley Memorial Project, an organization dedicated to preserving the public memory of Vancouver's original black community. He is also one of the publishers of Commodore Books. Wayde Compton teaches in Simon Fraser University's Writing and Publishing Program, where he is a creative writing instructor in The Writer's Studio; he also teaches English composition and literature at Coquitlam College. He is the Writer-in-Residence at SFU for 2007-08.

Nathalie Cooke is Associate Dean of Arts, McGill, co-editor of the Oxford abridged anthology of Canadian literature in English (1990), author of a biography of Margaret Atwood (1998), a critical companion to her work (2004), as well as articles on Canadian literature, culture, and more recently, Canadian foodways.

Jean-François Côté is a Full Professor in the Department of Sociology at Université du Québec à Montréal. He has been doing research on U.S. society and culture for numerous years, and has published articles and books on the subject, such as Le triangle d’Hermès, Poe, Stein, Warhol, figures de la modernité esthétique (2003), and more recently Le nouveau récit des frontières dans les Amériques (2005), co-edited with Emmanuelle Tremblay, and Edgar Allan Poe. Une pensée de la fin (2001), co-edited with Jean-François Chassay and Bertrand Gervais. He was the Director of the Graduate Programme in American Studies at UQAM, from 1994-98, and is currently series editor of Américana at the Presses de l’Université Laval. He is also member of GIRA (Groupe inter-disciplinaire de recherche sur les Amériques) at INRS. He is now involved in a research project (SHRCC) on “The New Forms of Cosmopolitanism in the Americas.”

John Cruickshank was appointed Publisher of CBC News in September, 2007. A superb Canadian journalist who has covered many of the country's important stories since the 1970s, John Cruickshank is a former managing editor of The Globe and Mail and former editor-in-chief of The Vancouver Sun. In 1981, Cruickshank was hired by The Globe and Mail, where he became Vancouver bureau chief, joining its editorial board in 1989 as a specialist in international affairs. John Cruickshank left The Globe and Mail in 1995 to take up editorship of The Vancouver Sun. Under his leadership, the paper won a record number of National Newspaper Awards. Prior to joining the CBC, Cruickshank was publisher of the Chicago Sun-Times and chief operating officer of the Sun-Times Media Group. During his time there from 2000 to 2007, he played a prominent role in redesigning the newspaper, and strengthening its commitment to investigative journalism and feature writing. John Cruickshank describes himself as a "passionate Canadian" and a lifelong supporter of the CBC. He considers his new role with the CBC to be the culmination of a career.

Heather De Santis is the Director of Intergovernmental Affairs at the federal Department of Public Safety. She also teaches in the School of Journalism and Communication at Carleton University where she is currently completing her PhD dissertation on the topic of soft power in international cultural relations. She has published on a wide variety of cultural policy issues, such as multiculturalism, the cultural industries, hate on the internet, and broadcasting policy. Ms. De Santis has worked in the field of international cultural policy research for over a decade as both a researcher and a public servant. She has held various positions within the federal government including: the Privy Council Office; the Canadian Embassy in Washington, D.C.; and the Department of Canadian Heritage where she was the Content Editor for the Canadian Cultural Observatory, and subsequently, Manager for Americas and Asia in the International Relations Directorate.

Victoria Dickenson is Executive Director, McCord Museum of Canadian History in Montreal. She is a graduate of the Master in Museum Studies Programme at the University of Toronto and has over thirty-five years experience working in the Canadian and international museum communities. Dr. Dickenson has worked on the collections and research side of the museum world, and on the public programmes side, at both provincial and national levels. She has been involved with the development of numerous exhibitions and interpretive projects, within the museum community and in the private sector. She is also an acknowledged leader in the application of information technology to museum practice. She is currently working on the relationship between museums and communities, particularly in the related contexts of diversity and globalization. In 2003, she was chosen by the Canadian Museums Association as one of the recipients of The Commemorative Medal for the Golden Jubilee, in recognition of her significant contribution to the museum community in Canada. In 2005 she was named a Fellow of the Canadian Museums Association.

Stephen J. Farnsworth, Associate Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia, is the author or coauthor of three books: The Nightly News Nightmare: Television’s Coverage of U.S. Presidential Elections, 1988-2004, The Mediated Presidency: Network Television News and U.S. Presidential Governance, 1981-2004, and Political Support in a Frustrated America. Dr. Farnsworth was a Canada-U.S. Fulbright Research Scholar at McGill University during the 2006-7 academic year. Dr. Farnsworth received his Ph.D. (1997) and M.A. (1993) in government from Georgetown University, after having received a B.A. (1990) in history from the University of Missouri, and a B.A. (1983) in government from Dartmouth College. Dr. Farnsworth has taught at Mary Washington since 1995 and has won three campus-wide teaching awards.

Edgardo Flores Rivas is Mexico's consul general to Montreal, Canada. He has been a career diplomat since 1967, serving Mexico abroad in the United States, Australia, Belize, the Netherlands and England. He has also been the Mexican ambassador to Peru, Nicaragua, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia. He holds a Sociology degree from the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana and an International Law degree from the University of London.

Karen Fricker is a lecturer in contemporary theatre at Royal Holloway, University of London, and a theatre critic. She received a PhD from the School of Drama, Trinity College Dublin in 2005, writing about Robert Lepage and québécois cultural politics. She continues to research Lepage’s work, along with other topics including the Eurovision Song Contest and contemporary Irish theatre. She is the co-founder of irish theatre magazine and writes and broadcasts about theatre and performance for The Guardian, Variety, The Irish Times, The New York Times, RTÉ, the BBC, and the CBC. Originally from Los Angeles, she holds a BA and MA from Stanford University.

Aimee Fullman is an independent arts and cultural policy consultant specializing in North American comparative cultural policy, cultural diplomacy and exchange, cultural diversity, and culture and technology. Currently, she is the principle investigator and project advisor for the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation’s Building Bridges Initiative. Her professional background includes a 15-month assignment as an Associate Expert for the Canadian Cultural Observatory and a five-year tenure with the Center for Arts & Culture, an American non-partisan cultural policy think tank, as a Program Officer and Administrator. In the United States, she has worked primarily on behalf of international programs, including cultural diplomacy, preservation and creative sector initiatives, executing UNESCO, State Department, and the President’s Committee on the Arts & Humanities contracts. Her select publications include: Cultural Policy 101: Demystifying American Cultural Policy (2006), Timeline of American Cultural Policy Milestones 1787-2006 (2007), Cultural Portals, Measurements of Success: 2nd International Survey Analysis (2006), Arts in Embassies: Challenges for the 21st Century (2004) and Building Bridges: U.S. Cultural Diplomacy In a Globalized World, forthcoming Spring 2008.

Jian Ghomeshi is a broadcaster, writer and musical artist born in London, England and raised in Toronto. He is a familiar face on CBC Television and is currently best known as the host of the daily national cultural affairs program, Q on CBC Radio One. He has appeared as a regular on various programs including The Hour, Sounds Like Canada, and The National. He spent three years as the host of the Gemini-award winning TV program, Play, and has interviewed subjects ranging from Woody Allen to Johnny Rotten to Jane Fonda and Steve Nash. He has written for numerous publications including the Sunday Washington Post and The Globe and Mail. Jian first came to public attention as a singer and songwriter in the multi-platinum selling folk rock group, Moxy Früvous.

In addition to being a high-profile politician, Gilberto Gil has been one of Brazil’s most famous singers and composers, inspiring many musicians around the world with nearly fifty albums and two Grammy Awards to his name. He began his career in the 1960s as a Bossa Nova musician and as his lyrical leanings became more politically and socially charged, helped found the popular anti-establishment movement called Tropicalia – a form that is a mix of bossa nova, rock, bahia folk music and Portugese fado. In 1968, Gil was imprisoned for several months by Brazil’s military government and went into exile, returning to Brazil in 1972 where he resumed his career in music and activism. Brazilian President Lula da Silva appointed Gil to serve as the country’s new Minister of Culture when he took office in January 2003. As Minister of Culture, Gil has been an outspoken advocate of free and open access to new digital technologies as well as protection of the rights of artists. Under the patronage of his Ministry, traditional and grassroots communities throughout Brazil have been turned into centres of digital cultural production. Gil recently hosted the United Nations’ Internet Governance Forum in Rio de Janeiro (November 2007), where he called for the establishment of an international Internet Bill of Rights. He continues to write, record, perform and tour.

As Vice-Principal of Public Affairs, Michael Goldbloom leads McGill's relations with the federal, provincial and municipal governments. He is also responsible for McGill’s relations with public institutions, the media and the Montreal community. Michael Goldbloom is a well-known newspaper publisher, lawyer and community leader. He began his career as a labour lawyer at Martineau Walker, now Fasken Martineau (1981-91), and then served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Montreal YMCA (1991-94). Mr. Goldbloom is the former Publisher of The Gazette, from 1994 to 2001. He joined Canada's largest newspaper, the Toronto Star, as Deputy Publisher in 2003 and became its Publisher in 2004. Mr. Goldbloom has a distinguished record of community leadership. He was President of Alliance Quebec and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Ville Marie Social Services Centre and of Selwyn House School in Montreal. Mr. Goldbloom is Senior Fellow in Media and Public Policy with the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada and Media@McGill.

Noreen Golfman is Professor in the Department of English and Interim Dean of the School of Graduate Studies at Memorial University of Newfoundland. Her recent writings have focused on the history and development of filmmaking in Atlantic Canada. For several years she was the film columnist of the Canadian Forum magazine. Noreen is currently President of the Canadian Federation of Humanities and Social Sciences. For over seventeen years she has been director of the MUN Cinema Series, a popular weekly alternative film showcase. She has also worked over almost 20 years as a commentator and reviewer on CBC TV and Radio, was a regular guest on Mary Walsh’s ‘Open Book’ show and is a regular contributor to CBC radio’s ‘Talking Books’ hosted by Ian Brown. Perhaps her fondest public achievement was performing the lovably obnoxious role of Ariel Flint on CBC Radio’s beloved serial show, The Great Eastern.

A former Canadian ambassador to the United States and Under-Secretary of State for External Affairs, Allan Gotlieb's international law and diplomacy experience has been honed over the past 50 years through his legal and public service careers. Mr. Gotlieb is the chairman of several private Canadian charitable foundations and companies and a past director of a number of international corporations in Canada and the United States as well as Canadian Crown corporations and agencies. Mr. Gotlieb is a Companion of the Order of Canada, the highest civil honour in the country, and a recipient of the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Government of Canada. Mr. Gotlieb has taught at numerous universities, including Harvard University as William Lyon Mackenzie King Visiting Professor and the University of Toronto as Claude Bissell Visiting Professor. He is an Honorary Fellow of Wadham College, Oxford, and former Visiting Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. Mr. Gotlieb has written six books and countless articles on international law, diplomacy and political science.

Rainer Enrique Hamel is Professor of Linguistics in the Department of Anthropology at Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM) in Mexico City. He is a member of the Mexican Academy of Science and the Director of the interinstitutional Research Programme “Indigenous Communities and Intercultural Bilingual Education.” His areas of research include sociolinguistics, applied linguistics, bilingualism and bilingual education, language politics and planning, and discourse analysis. He has published several books and over 70 articles and book chapters in five different languages. Over the past years he has worked as a visiting researcher and professor at the Universities of Campinas and Belem, Brazil, Stanford and UC Santa Barbara, USA, and Frankfurt and Mannheim, Germany, as well as in other countries. Rainer Enrique Hamel est professeur de linguistique au

Elsbeth Heaman is a historian of early Canada, particularly the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, with a special interest in the history of science and medicine. She is studying the cultural history of knowledge and authority in Canada, and has concurrent projects on the history of the Canadian state and the history of Canadian taxation (undertaken together with professors at Dalhousie, Queen’s, and Carleton). She has written two monographs, one on the history of Canadian exhibitions and expositions, and the other on the history of an English teaching hospital. She has co-edited a forthcoming collection of essays in Canadian social history provisionally entitled Figuring the Social.

Hirsh is an actor and producer best known from the Gemini nominated Showcase series Naked Josh. The hit comedy ran three seasons with Hirsh starring as ‘Josh Gould’, a young sexual anthropology professor determined to test out his theories in the real world of dating. Recently, he starred as ‘Jake Hersh’ in the critically acclaimed CBC mini-series St-Urbain’s Horseman based on the late Mordecai Richler’s popular novel. Last year, Hirsh played the role of “the Guy” (Max) in LoveBites on TBS, the American version of Guy A. Lepage’s award-winning comedy Un Gars, Une Fille. As a filmmaker, Hirsh won a Gemini Award in 2005 for producing the feature documentary Camp Hollywood, about Canadian artists struggling to make it at a legendary Hollywood hotel. The film has aired on Bravo!, IFC, and The Sundance Channel in the United States. David was born in Montréal and currently lives in Los Angeles.

Barrie Howells has produced, edited or directed over 300 documentary films, which have received many International awards, including Oscar nominations. He worked with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and from 1964 at the National Film Board of Canada. He was named Executive Producer of the Documentary Studio C in 1978, a position he held for eight years. In 1986 he returned to producing, directing and editing. In 1996 he left the NFB to form his own company, based in Montreal and Mexico City. Mr. Howells has co-produced with the BBC, Channel Four, N.O.S., Swedish TV, PBS, various agencies of the United Nations, as well as with China and Mexico. He presently lives in Mexico.

Erin Hurley is Assistant Professor of English at McGill University. Work in her speciality areas of Quebecois performance and national performatives has been published in Theatre Journal, Theatre Research in Canada / Recherches théâtrales au Canada, Canadian Theatre Review, and in edited volumes. Forthcoming are a special issue on the performing arts in Quebec for GLOBE. Revue internationale d’études québécoises that she edited and to which she contributed an article on Cirque du Soleil, as well as articles on Céline Dion in Las Vegas (Annuaire théâtral) and Nancy Huston.

Since 1996, Sharon Jeannotte’s primary research focus has been on social cohesion as a horizontal public policy issue affecting Canadian society as a whole. She has published research on a variety of subjects, including the impact of value change on Canadian society, international definitions of social cohesion, the points of intersection between cultural policy and social cohesion, the role of cultural participation and cultural capital in building sustainable communities, culture and volunteering, and immigration and cultural citizenship. In 2005, she co-edited, with Caroline Andrew, Monica Gattinger, and Will Straw, a volume entitled Accounting for Culture: Thinking Through Cultural Citizenship, published by the University of Ottawa Press. Ms. Jeannotte is currently working with a national team of scholars on a comparative study of provincial cultural policies in Canada and on a study of cultural infrastructure in Ontario with the Centre of Expertise on Culture and Communities.

Steve Jordan is the Founder and Executive Director of the not-for-profit Polaris Music Prize, which honours the Canadian album of the year each September with a cash prize of $20,000. The 10 nominees and winner are selected entirely by a panel of music journalists and critics from coast to coast. In 2006, the winner was Toronto’s Final Fantasy’s He Poos Clouds and last year’s winner was Montréal’s Patrick Watson for Close To Paradise. Each winner has received immediate profile and sales boosts both at home and abroad. Prior to starting Polaris in 2006, he has served as an ‘Artists and Repertoire’ executive with multinational Warner Music Canada and independent True North Records. He has worked with musicians and artists from a variety of musical genres. Prior to his 10 years experience in the record industry, Steve was a broadcaster, artist manager, journalist, promoter, activist and cable access TV personality in Kingston, Ontario.

As the Executive Director of the Canadian Film Centre Slawko Klymkiw leads Canada’s foremost film, television and new media institution dedicated to advancing Canadian creative values, talent and content worldwide. Continuing to strengthen and shape the profile of the Canadian Film Centre, Klymkiw is responsible for the strategic vision and leadership for all of the Film Centre’s training, production, promotion and investment initiatives. As the former architect of the CBC Television schedule, Klymkiw was responsible for the cultivation of new programming and its positioning in the schedule. CBC Television’s programming success under Klymkiw’s stewardship included: Canada: a People’s History, The Newsroom Movie, This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Made in Canada, Trudeau, The Greatest Canadian, DaVinci’s Inquest, CBC Sunday, and the Olympics in Atlanta, Nagano and Salt Lake City. He currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Toronto International Film Festival Group, and was recently appointed to the Editorial Board of the Telefilm Creative Summit.

Since July 2007, Mr. Michel Lafleur has held the position of Director, irection des affaires internationales et des relations intergouvernementales (DAIRI) in Quebec’s ministère de la Culture, des Communications et de la Condition féminine. DAIRI’s mandate is to coordinate the department’s international activities, promote and advance quebecois culture outside Quebec, support initiatives to raise the profile of quebecois artists and creators outside Quebec, and manage the cultural component of bilateral cooperative agreements signed by Quebec. A Université de Sherbrooke economics graduate, Mr. Lafleur was chargé d’affaires and director of economics for the Quebec Delegation in Chicago, where he managed and coordinated a 10-member team. During his career he has held a range of overseas posts for the Government of Quebec, most notably in Boston and Brussels.

Yvan Lamonde was trained as a philosopher and as an historian. He teaches literature and history at McGill University’s Department of French Language and Literature. He is a member of the Academies of Arts, Humanities and Sciences of Canada and the Académie des lettres du Québec. Winner of the Governor General Award and of the Killam research fellowship, Yvan Lamonde was named (senior) James McGill Chair for research in comparative history in Quebec and has co-directed the publication of Histoire du livre et de l’imprimé au Canada (PUM) / History of the Book in Canada (UTP) in six volumes. He has published, amongst others, Histoire sociale des idées au Québec ( I : 1760-1896; II : 1896-1929) and Allégeances et dépendances. Histoire d’une ambivalence identitaire.

Pierre Landry was born in New Brunswick in 1973 and started his radio career at a campus radio station in Moncton when he was 19. After graduating from a broadcasting program in 1996, he became the host of Bande à part, a national radio show produced by Radio-Canada. The following year, Pierre moved to Montreal when he was hired by MusiquePlus as a VJ, interviewing countless artists from around the world and presenting music videos. Balancing between radio and television in French and English, Pierre has been heard or seen through the years on CHOM FM, TQS, COOL FM, and TVA. Since 2005, he is the cultural columnist for Daybreak on CBC Radio One in Montreal and recently joined the television team of CBC News at Six.

Montreal novelist Linda Leith is founder of Blue Metropolis Foundation and artistic director of the Blue Metropolis Montreal International Literary Festival. Born in Northern Ireland, she is Adjunct Professor of English at Concordia University. She has published three novels -- The Desert Lake (2007), The Tragedy Queen (1995), and Birds of Passage (1993) -- as well as the memoir Épouser la Hongrie (Leméac, 2004), translated into French by Aline Apostolska and into Serbian by Rad (Belgrade, 2005); and Introducing Hugh MacLennan’s Two Solitudes (1990). Un Amour de Salomé, the translation into French of The Tragedy Queen by Agnès Guitard won the Governor General’s Award for translation 2003 (XYZ Editeur 2003). Travels with an Umbrella: An Irish Journey, her translation into English of Louis Gauthier’s Voyage en Irlande avec un parapluie, was shortlisted for the Glassco Prize and for the QWF Prize in literary translation. She was editor of Telling Differences: New English Fiction from Quebec, an anthology of short fiction (1989) and of Matrix magazine (1988-1995).

Louis Patrick Leroux is an Assistant Professor at Concordia University. He teaches playwriting and modern and contemporary drama in the Department of English and Québec drama and literature in the département d’Études françaises. A playwright and director, he founded Ottawa’s Théâtre la Catapulte which he managed over the course of the 1990s. This Winter and Spring, he is Artist in residence at Concordia’s Matralab. His current academic research focuses mainly on self-reflexivity in Québécois drama (historical and biographical narratives, self-representation, autofiction) as well as the Cirque du Soleil in Vegas. He is editing a special issue titled Québec in Vegas for L’Annuaire théâtral which will be coming out this Summer.

Michael is a partner in the Toronto office of Goodmans. His practice concentrates on the legal aspects of the entertainment industry, primarily the financing, production and distribution of films, television productions, music, books and multimedia. He has acted for independent producers, writers, directors, personalities, distributors, television networks, trade associations, Canadian chartered banks, trust companies and private financiers in the interim and equity financing of film, as well as private foundations, authors, literary agents, book retailers and art galleries. Michael is ranked as a leading Canadian entertainment lawyer by Lexpert/American Lawyer Media’s Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada, the Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory and Euromoney’s Guide to the World’s Leading Technology, Media and Entertainment Lawyers. Michael is currently Chairman of Westwood Creative Artists Ltd. and is Executive Producer of the Heritage Project for The Historica Foundation. He has lectured at the University of Toronto, Osgoode Hall Law School, the Canadian and American Bar Associations and at the Cannes Film Festival.

Executive Director of the Centre d’études et de recherches internationales de l’Université de Montréal (CÉRIUM), Jean-François Lisée was an adviser to Quebec Premiers Jacques Parizeau and Lucien Bouchard from 1994 to 2000, in charge of, among other things, international relations and the international aspects of Quebec’s quest for sovereignty. From 2003 to 2004, he was a visiting scholar at the Centre d’études et de recherches internationales of the Institut d’études politiques in Paris. He has written a number of books, including Dans l’œil de l’aigle, an examination of U.S. policy toward the separatist movement, which earned him a Governor General’s Award. He worked in journalism for nearly 20 years, as Paris and Washington correspondent for quebecois and French media outlets. He is also a member of the Centre de recherche sur les politiques et le développement social (CPDS), where he and his team have set up an Internet site on social policy and globalization: PolitiquesSociales.net.

Anaí López received a B.A. in Communication Studies from the Universidad Iberoamericana, and a M.A. in Film and Television Screenplay Writing from the Escuela Superior de Cine y Artes Audiovisuales in Madrid. As a Screenwriter, Anaí has worked for various television programs, including the award-winning children shows El Diván de Valentina (Valentina’s Couch) and Bizbirije, for Canal Once. In the same network, she was the Head Writer in the sitcom Fonda Susilla (Susilla Diner.) Currently, Anaí teaches the Narrative Skills Workshop at the Universidad Iberoamericana and writes for the dramedy series Las alegrías del hogar (Happy at Home.) She has written two feature film screenplays: Actores S.A. (Actors Inc.) and Los fabulosos siete (The Fabulous Seven), to be released Spring 2008.

Dean Christopher P. Manfredi, Professor and former Chair of the Department of Political Science at McGill University, is an outstanding scholar and authority on the role of the judiciary in democratic societies especially the Supreme Court, principally Canada and the United States. His research focuses on law and the courts with a particular emphasis on the political and policy impact of rights litigation. He has published extensively in academic and professional journals and is a highly regarded political and legal commentator. He has written three books: Judicial Power and the Charter: Canada and the Paradox of Liberal Constitutionalism; The Supreme Court and Juvenile Justice; and Feminist Activism in the Supreme Court: Legal Mobilization and the Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund. He also co-edited The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms: Reflections on the Charter after Twenty Years.

As a Canadian diplomat, Émile Martel was Minister of Cultural Affairs in France after being posted in Spain, Mexico and Central America. He was responsible for the Canadian Cultural Center in Paris and for the revival of cultural programs in France. Having written sixteen poetry books, Émile Martel won the Governor General's Award in 1995. As a translator, mostly in collaboration with Nicole Perron-Martel, he translated several collections of texts and novels from Spanish and several novels from English, for example Life of Pi by Yann Martel.

Professor Martínez-Zalce received her doctorate in Modern Literature from the Iberoamericana University and is a tenured researcher at the Centre for Research on North America, National Autonomous University of Mexico. She has received funding from the Rockefeller Foundation, the Mexican Centre for Writers, the National Council for Culture and the Arts and the Government of Canada. Her latest book (edited with Luzelena Gutiérrez de Velasco and Ana Rosa Domenella) is Femenino/masculino en las literaturas de América. Escrituras en contraste. She is currently a Level 2 National Researcher on the National System of Researchers (SNI).

Provost of McGill University since December 2005, Anthony C. Masi (PhD, Brown University) has been a professor at McGill since 1979. He has been a visiting research professor in Italy at Bari and Pisa, and was the first non- Italian citizen to be the Jemolo Fellow in Italian Studies at Nuffield College, Oxford and the first non-Italian to serve as a research fellow at the Italian National Statistics Institute (ISTAT). Professor Masi is a member of the National Statistics Council of Canada. He has authored and co-authored publications on labour issues for international journals, chapters in scholarly books, as well as several encyclopedia entries on the Italian and Canadian steel industries.

Trina McQueen is a celebrated broadcaster and journalist with extensive senior management experience in both public and private broadcasting. Ms. McQueen began her television career as the first female host of CTV's W-5. She later moved to CBC Television as an on-air reporter. Ms. McQueen was President and Chief Operating Officer of CTV Inc., President of the Discovery Channel, and CBC Television's Vice-President of News and Current Affairs and CBC Newsworld . Since her retirement in 2003, she has been CTV Professor of Broadcast Management at Schulich School of Business at York University. She is a board member of organizations supporting higher education, the arts and broadcasting, including the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the Canadian Opera Company, the Canadian Journalism Foundation, the McLelland and Stewart publishers, Historica and the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television. In recognition of her many achievements, she was elected to the Canadian Broadcaster's Hall of Fame and the Canadian News Hall of Fame and has received three honourary degrees and numerous other awards.

Carlos Monsiváis is Mexico’s leading cultural critic and Mexico City’s greatest living chronicler. He has written extensively and in evocative journalistic detail about Mexican history, culture and politics. He was born May 4, 1938, in Mexico City, and studied philosophy, economics and literature at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Monsiváis’s main publications are collections of literary journalism - he has pioneered the genre of nueva crónica, which often has been compared to the “new journalism” of the United States. Monsiváis won Spain’s Premio Anagrama de Ensayo, as well as the Anagrama International Literature Prize for Aires de familia: Cultura y sociedad en América Latina (Family Pedigree: Culture and Society in Latin America, 2000), which treats Hollywood, TV, mythology and folklore in Latin America from 1880 to 1920. Additionally, he has edited books on art and poetry, and written biographies of Mexican artists and writers, including Amado Nervo, Salvador Novo, and Jorge Cuesta. A selection of Monsiváis’s essays, Mexican Postcards (1997), is available in English translation. Other honors include the National Journalism Award (1977), the Mazatlán Prize for Literature (1987), the Manuel de Buendía Prize for Literature (1988) and the Francisco Zarco Journalism Award (1995). Carlos Monsiváis lives in Mexico City.

AISLIN is the name of Terry Mosher’s elder daughter, and the nom de plume that he has used for thirty-five years as the political cartoonist for The Gazette in Montreal. To date, forty Aislin books have been published. Terry Mosher has traveled throughout the world on assignment, creating sketchbooks for The Gazette and, more recently, Reader’s Digest Magazine. Mosher is a regular speaker on the topics of humour, history and the importance of cartooning as a communications tool, having appeared at national conferences such as Idea City, The Banff Festival for The Arts, Montreal’s Canadian Club and numerous writers’ festivals. Terry Mosher has had a long association with The Old Brewery Mission, Montreal’s largest shelter for the homeless. In recognition both of his charitable work and his contribution to the world of political cartooning, Mosher was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in May 2003. In May of 2007, Terry Mosher received an honorary doctorate of letters from McGill University.

Heather Munroe-Blum is Principal and Vice-Chancellor of McGill University and Professor in Medicine. A distinguished psychiatric epidemiologist, she has dedicated her career to the advancement of higher education, science and innovation, in Canada and internationally, advising governments and other organizations on the role that universities and research play in advancing international competitiveness and enriching societies. Prof. Munroe-Blum holds a Ph.D. with distinction in epidemiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, in addition to M.S.W. (Wilfrid Laurier University) and B.A. and B.S.W. degrees (McMaster University). Named an Officer of the Order of Canada for her outstanding record of achievements in science, innovation and higher education policy, she holds numerous honorary degrees from Canadian and international universities and is a Specially Elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. Prof. Munroe-Blum is also a Senior Fellow of Massey College.

If he were American, he wouldn’t keep his bio to the allotted 100 words, but being Canadian, Andy Nulman will happily follow the rules and tell you he useta be best known as co-founder/CEO of the world-renowned Just For Laughs Festival, but that pales since he sold his pioneering mobile media company, Airborne Entertainment, for many millions three years ago. He is also an engaging speaker, author, blogger and winner of many prestigious awards, including Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 and McGill’s Management Achievement. His major disappointment is that he has only one life to live…but he’s working on a solution.

*By the way, the spelling of “Useta” is intentional!!

Paterson ALEX K. PATERSON, O.C., O.Q., Q.C.
Alex Paterson is counsel to Borden Ladner Gervais. He was admitted to the Québec Bar in 1957, started his professional career with McMaster Meighen, was Chairman of McGill University (1990-1994) and Chancellor of Bishops University (1995-2005). Mr. Paterson is well recognized as one of the leading litigations lawyers in Québec and has been appointed to both the Order of Canada and the Order of Québec. Mr. Paterson is presently the Chairman of the Greater Montreal Foundation. With Charles Bronfman, he is Co-Chair of the Board of Trustees for the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada.

Dr. Jesús Pérez-Magallón is Chair of the Department of Hispanic Studies at McGill University. He pursued his doctoral education in Philadelphia, at the University of Pennsylvania, where he taught before coming to McGill in 1992. Dr Pérez-Magallón’s principal area of research lies in the origins of modernity, particularly in the transition from the Baroque to the Enlightenment and nineteenth-century intellectual history. His publications in this area include books on En torno a las ideas literarias de Mayans, El teatro neoclásico and Construyendo la modernidad. Dr Pérez-Magallón has also written extensively on theatre issues, Baroque and Enlightenement culture, romantic and realist topics, and contemporary writers. He is the General Editor of Revista Canadiense de Estudios Hispánicos and is joint editor of the journal Hecho Teatral. Within the Department, Dr Pérez-Magallón teaches courses ranging from the Renaissance and Baroque to Contemporary Spanish Culture.

Pierre Perpall is a Canadian disco artist who has performed under the names Perpall, Purple Flash, Pluton and the Humanoids. He has recorded several albums and over 20 singles over a career spanning two decades. Pierre is one of the first black performers to have had a successful recording career as a pop artist in Quebec. His musical hits have included We Can Make It, Da, Da, Da, and Crème Soufflée. Pierre has played to enthusiastic crowds in Miami, New York, Mexico, Montreal, Toronto and Las Vegas. Over his career he has performed onstage with the likes of James Brown, Céline Dion, Bobby Rydell, Joe Dassin, Karen Cheryl, and B.B. King.

Claudio Prado was born in 1943. He moved to London in 1965 where he became deeply involved with the counterculture movement. He was involved in launching the International Times and the first format of Time Out. Mr. Prado was also strongly involved with the early experiences of free independent pirate radio. While in London, he met Gilberto Gil, with whom he has had a lifetime friendship. He produced Gil's band in the Isle of Wight Festival and was one of the organizers of the first Glastonbury Festival, the first philosophically and collaborative free festival in the world. He was the producer of the Mutantes, the legendary tropicalist band, has worked as a freelance and has had his own event's company. Mr. Prado has run Rio’s Carnival and is currently the head of the Digital Culture Department of the Ministry of Culture of Brazil.

Marc Raboy is the Beaverbrook Chair in Ethics, Media and Communications and Professor in the Department of Art History and Communication Studies at McGill University. A former journalist in a wide variety of media, Professor Raboy taught previously at the Université de Montréal and Université Laval. He is an internationally-recognized specialist in media and communication policy, the author of numerous books and journal articles, and has advised such organizations as the World Bank, UNESCO, and the Japan Broadcasting Corporation. He is a member of the council of the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR), past president of the Canadian Communication Association, and member of several editorial boards. From 2001 to 2003 he served as expert advisor to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage for its study of Canadian broadcasting. A founding member of an international advocacy campaign for Communication Rights in the Information Society, his current research focuses on global media and communication governance. Professor Raboy is Chair of the steering committee of Media@McGill.

Ian Rae came to McGill as a SSHRC postdoctoral fellow in the Department of English. He joined the MISC as a postdoctoral fellow in 2004 and then accepted a teaching position in the North American Studies Program at the University of Bonn, Germany, in 2005. The following year he returned to the MISC as a Visiting Assistant Professor and Acting Program Director. Rae has presented his research at conferences across Canada and Europe, as well as publishing on Canadian poetry, literature, and architecture. McGill-Queen’s University Press will publish his book, From Cohen to Carson: The Poet’s Novel in Canada, in March 2008.

Beverly Rasporich is a Professor Emeritus at the University of Calgary where she taught Canadian Studies in the interdisciplinary Faculty of Communication and Culture. As Associate Dean of Academic Programmes and Acting Dean, she also assisted in the development of the Faculty. Over a long career, she has been the recipient of numerous fellowships and research awards and has published widely on such diverse subjects as multiculturalism, Canadian humour, and women in the arts. She is the author of the following books: Dance of the Sexes: Art and Gender in the Fiction of Alice Munro, Magic off Main: The Art of Esther Warkov, and the compact disc/electronic book Western Place: Women’s Space, winner of a 2002 AMTEC award for the use of multi-media in education. In 2006 she held a Fulbright Chair at Portland State University where she wrote the book English Canadian Humour and Culture: Miss Canada and her Uncle Sam.

David Rotenberg has been a master acting teacher for over 20 years. He has directed on Broadway, in many major regional theatres, for television, and he has published five novels (the Zhong Fong detective series). The series is in the process of being optioned for film. David has taught at York University, the National Theatre School of Canada, the Shanghai Theatre Academy, the University of Cape Town, and Princeton. The roster of his students reads like a who's who in ranks of Canadian actors, including Scott Speedman, Rachel McAdams, Polly Shannon, David Hirsh, Jonas Chernick and Shawn Doyle. His unique techniques are used by actors in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, South Africa and the People's Republic of China. In December, 2003, David established a private acting studio, Professional Actors Lab, Inc., dedicated to the continued training of actors working mainly within the film and television medium.

A self-described "omnivorous music and culture nerd," Patti is heavily involved in Canada's independent music community - from running labels to performing in bands. Patti began her radio career with CKUT, the McGill University radio station. She joined CBC Radio 2 in 1991 as a researcher and fill-in host for Brave New Waves, and by 1995 she was host and executive producer of the show. In 2006 she also began hosting 5 à 6 on CBC Radio One. She can currently be heard as the weekend host of Canada Live, CBC Radio 2's new flagship live music performance program, introducing audiences to an eclectic mix of concerts recorded from regions across Canada. She also hosts the new Radio 2 music documentary program Inside the Music.

ron schmidt RON SCHMIDT
Ron Schmidt has been on the faculty in the Department of Political Science at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) since 1972, where he teaches racial and ethnic politics, public policy and political theory. He held the Fulbright-Enders Research Chair at the University of Montreal in 2005-06. He is the author of Language Policy and Identity Politics in the United States (Temple University Press, 2000; winner of a Best Book Award from the Section on Race, Ethnicity and Politics of the American Political Science Association), and has published numerous articles and book chapters on language policy conflicts in the United States and Canada, on Latino politics, and on the political incorporation of immigrants in the United States and Canada. He is currently the lead author of a co-authored manuscript (“in progress”) under contract with the University of Michigan Press, on the impact of recent immigrants on U.S. racial politics.

Robert Schwartzwald is Professor and Chair of the Département d’études anglaises at the Université de Montréal. From 1997 to 2004, he served as Director of the Center for Crossroads in the Study of the Americas for the Five College consortium of western Massachusetts, where he was also Professor of French and Francophone Studies at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst. Co-author of Fictions de l’identitaire au Québec, Editor in Chief of Quebec Studies from 1996 to 2000, and of the International Journal of Canadian Studies / Revue internationale d’études canadiennes from 2000 to 2006, his numerous publications on relations between literary and national modernities have appeared in volumes and journals in Canada, the United States, Mexico, Europe, and Israel.

Vladimir Skok’s career in the public sector has focused on the collaborative advancement, research and development of cultural policy in Canada and abroad. He is currently Director of eCulture at Canadian Heritage, which is responsible the Canadian Cultural Observatory (www.culturescope.ca) and the Culture.ca portal, where he also helped establish and chair an informal international network of national cultural portals (www.culturemondo.org). He has advised the Organization for American States (OAS) on the development of a Cultural Policy Observatory for the Americas and the uptake of Cultural Information Systems in the Hemisphere as well as contributing to cultural observatories knowledge exchange in Europe. Previously, in Paris he served the UN-UNESCO World Commission on Cultural Development under former UN Secretary-General Javier Perez De Cuellar. This commission published a landmark 1996 world report, Our Creative Diversity. Mr. Skok received his undergraduate training at Carleton University in political science and public administration and professional arts management training at the Banff Centre in Alberta. He also pursued advanced studies in European Cultural Planning at De Montfort University, UK.

At McGill since 1993, Dr. Straw is a member of the Department of Art History and Communication Studies. A former President of the Canadian Communications Association, Dr. Straw is interested in cultural identity and its relationship to nation and language. He is the author of Cyanide and Sin: Visualizing Crime in 50s America (New York: Andrew Roth Gallery/ PPP Publications, October 2006), and the forthcoming Popular Music: Scenes and Sensibilities (Duke University Press). Dr. Straw is the author of over 60 articles on film music, media and cultural studies. He serves on the editorial boards of numerous journals, including The Journal of Canadian Studies, Globe. Revue d’études québécoises, Screen, Cultural Studies, Culture, Theory and Critique, Space and Culture and the Canadian Journal of Communication. Dr. Straw has been Senior Music Correspondent on CBC Radio’s Prime Time, and popular music correspondent for The Women’s Television Network. With journalist Anne Legacé-Dawson, he commented on culture for CBC’s Montréal-based television news program Newswatch.

An Ojibway from the Curve Lake First Nations, he has worn many hats in his literary career, from performing stand-up comedy at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. to lecturing at the British Museum on the films of Sherman Alexie. Over the last two decades, he has been an award-winning playwright (with over 70 productions of his work), a journalist/columnist (with a column in five newspapers), short-story writer, novelist, scriptwriter (The Beachcombers, North of Sixty etc.), librettist, and has worked on over 17 documentaries exploring the Native experience. Through many of his books, most notably the Funny, You Don’t Look Like One series, he has tried to educated and inform the world about issues that reflect and interfere in the lives of Canada’s First Nations. Oddly enough, the thing his mother is most proud of is his ability to make spaghetti from scratch.

Dr. Serra Tinic is an associate professor of media studies in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta, Canada. She has published journal articles and book chapters on media globalization, consumer culture, and transnational television production. Her book On Location: Canada’s Television Industry in a Global Market was published by the University of Toronto Press in June, 2005. She is currently working on a SSHRC-funded research project that explores the cultural dimensions of the global distribution of Canadian television programming.

John Herd Thompson is Professor of History at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. He has served as chair of Duke's Department of History, and as the Director of Duke's Canadian Studies and North American Studies Programs. A specialist in the comparative history of the United States and Canada, and on the history of the U.S.-Canada relationship, he is the author or co-author of six books. Canada and the United States: Ambivalent Allies, (co-authored with Stephen Randall) is about to appear in its fourth edition, and has become the standard work on the interaction between the United States and Canada. His most recent book (co-authored with Patricia Roy) is British Columbia: Land of Promises, a volume in The Oxford Illustrated History of Canada.

whyte KENNETH WHYTE, Editor-in-Chief, Maclean's Magazine

Kenneth Whyte is the editor-in-chief and publisher of Maclean’s magazine. After his first year on the job, Maclean’s was named magazine of the year at the Canadian Magazine Awards. Mr. Whyte has been a practising journalist and commentator on Canadian and international affairs for twenty years. In 1993 Mr. Whyte was appointed editor-in-chief of Saturday Night. Under his leadership, Saturday Night was named magazine of the year by the Canadian Society of Magazine Editors. In 1998, Mr. Whyte was named founding editor of the National Post. In 2003, Mr. Whyte was a visiting scholar in media and public policy at McGill University and co-founder of the Observatory in Media and Public Policy at the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada. He was appointed to his current positions at Maclean’s in February, 2005. He is a senior fellow at Massey College, University Toronto, a governor of the Donner Canada Foundation, and a director of the Peter Munk Public Policy Foundation. He is writing a book on newspapers for Random House.

Wilkins DAVID H. WILKINS, United States Ambassador to Canada
David H. Wilkins was nominated by President George W. Bush to become the United States Ambassador to Canada on April 27, 2005 and was confirmed unanimously by the United States Senate on May 26, 2005. On June 29, 2005 he became the 21st United States Ambassador to Canada. Ambassador Wilkins has traveled throughout Canada extensively - visiting every province and territory, listening to and learning from Canadian citizens. The Ambassador considers his highest priority strengthening the ties that bind the United States with Canada. Wilkins was elected to the South Carolina House of Representatives in 1980 and served there for 25 years. He quickly rose through the ranks in the House of Representatives, serving six years as chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and two years as speaker pro tem before being elected speaker, a position he held for 11 years. A native of Greenville, South Carolina, David Wilkins graduated from Greenville High School and received his undergraduate degree from Clemson University and his law degree from the University of South Carolina School of Law. David and his wife of 35 years, Susan, have two sons - James and Robert.

Carl Wilson is a writer and editor at The Globe and Mail, and the author of Let's Talk About Love: A Journey to the End of Taste, a book about mass culture, social class, aesthetic judgment and Celine Dion in the 33 1/3 Series from Continuum Books (New York). Carl's writing has appeared in The New York Times, Slate, Blender, Pitchfork and many other publications. He's twice been republished in the annual Da Capo Best Music Writing anthology. He runs the popular music blog Zoilus.com and is part of the team behind Trampoline Hall, Toronto's acclaimed nightclub series of lectures by non-experts, which toured America in 2002.

Dominique Zgarka has been President of Koch Entertainment Canada (Formerly Koch Entertainment Inc) since the company's inception in April of 1995. Koch Entertainment [Canada] is a wholly owned division of Entertainment One a publicly traded company on the UK Alternative Investment Market ('AIM'). Prior to that, Mr. Zgarka was President of Electric Distribution, a wholesaler and independent music distributor that he operated for over twenty years. Mr. Zgarka attended Montreal's Concordia University followed by senior positions at Trans Canada Distribution (a division of Media conglomerate Quebecor) and CBS Records (now know as Sony Music Canada).