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Main Sessions

Wednesday, February 8

Indigenous welcome and ceremonial tobacco offering
8:30 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.

Opening Ceremonies
8:45 a.m. – 9:15 a.m.

Keynote: Decentralizing community energy: Samsø and their journey to 100% renewable energy

Keynote speaker: Søren Hermansen, CEO and Director, SAMSO energy academy
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Søren Hermansen is an international speaker, presenting his methods and results from his work in Samsø, Denmark. Since 2007 the island has been self-sufficient and carbon-neutral. Furthermore, the island supplies surplus energy to the mainland of Denmark. The key to success is local change. It is the people of Samso that own their own production machines, and the income the island will get for their surplus energy in the future means that the island will in a far less degree be dependent on subsidies from the state. Hear how this story has inspired action globally and brings opportunities to communities across Canada for communities small and large.


Søren Hermansen, CEO and Director, SAMSO energy academy

Søren Hermansen headshot

Søren Hermansen is the CEO and Director of the Samsø Energy Academy, which opened in 2007. He has been the driving force behind the transformation of Samsø into a world-famous renewable energy island. His strong leadership is recognized worldwide.

For his innovative work, Mr. Hermansen was named one of the “Heroes of the Environment” by Time Magazine, and in 2009 he was awarded the Gothenborg Award, which some call the Nobel prize for the Environment. He is a highly renowned speaker at conferences and international events, presenting on solutions for the deployment of renewable energy and promoting the experience of Samsø as an inspiration and a model for other regional sustainability projects worldwide.

Plenary Session: Local democracy for net-zero transitions
2 – 3 p.m.

Responding to and building off ideas shared in the opening keynote, this panel of community and climate leaders will reflect on and challenge collective efforts to drive citizen led transformation for climate action and respond to strategies of energy self-sufficiency as a priority for climate action.

Moderator: Carole Saab, CEO, Federation of Canadian Municipalities

Carole Saab headshot

Carole Saab is a tireless champion for cities and communities, driving an ambitious vision for local government leadership in building a more sustainable, livable and inclusive Canada.

Carole is an accomplished strategist with a decade of experience in federal and municipal advocacy. Carole has been a driving force behind watershed achievements for municipalities, securing unprecedented investment and progress for cities and communities. She is recognized by peers as a game-changer, and consistently voted as one of Canada’s top 100 lobbyists.

Carole’s leadership has positioned FCM as one of the most respected and effective advocacy organizations in Canada.

Panelists: David Mitchell, Mayor of Bridgewater NS

David Mitchell headshot

David Mitchell, Mayor for the town of Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, was elected to municipal politics in 2004 and was elected as the town’s 26th mayor in 2016. In September 2020 David was acclaimed to a second term.

David has been at the forefront of many key initiatives that have helped drive Bridgewater to become the strong centre of economic, social, and sustainable leadership that it is today. Known for his willingness to speak up and to never mince words, David has a reputation as one who gets things done. David strongly believes in empowering his community to feel a renewed sense of pride and has gained tremendous respect as an encourager of people. His approach to leadership brings people together at all levels of government and he has helped achieve unprecedented project cooperation and investments. He has been proud to helm a Council that places premium value on Bridgewater's sustainable initiatives, working towards the elimination of energy poverty and ensuring municipalities to take a leadership role when it comes to the environment and sustainability.

During his term as mayor, David instigated the introduction of public transit within Bridgewater, which was considered a tremendous success. He has championed many important projects and fostered new relationships with groups such as the C40 and the International Network of Michelin Cities. David continues to move Bridgewater to unprecedented levels of economic, social, and sustainable leadership.

Opening Reception and SCAwards Ceremony
5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Thursday, February 9

MP Breakfast
7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.

Keynote: Human rights and ReconciliACTION

Keynote Speaker: Margaret Pfoh, Chief Executive Officer, Aboriginal Housing and Management Association
11 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Margaret Pfoh, CEO of the Aboriginal Housing Management Association (AHMA), and 60’s Scoop survivor, delivers a compelling talk on Indigenous justice and the role we all must play in, what she likes to call, ReconciliACTION. Margaret is a sought-after speaker and influencer with 30 years of expertise in the housing sector. Listen and learn as she expertly leads participants through the important connections between human rights, Indigenous rights, and the right to housing. 


Margaret Pfoh, Chief Executive Officer, Aboriginal Housing and Management Association

Margaret Pfoh headshot

Margaret Pfoh, Chief Executive Officer of the Aboriginal Housing Management Association, is Tsimshian, a member of the Lax Kw’alaams Band and a descendent from the Eagle Clan of the Gitga'at First Nation. She joined the non-profit housing sector more than 27 years ago and is the CEO of the Aboriginal Housing Management Association (AHMA).

Margaret’s career has been built on her dedication to serve and support the Indigenous Peoples of British Columbia and she currently serves on both the CHRA’s Indigenous Housing Advisory Caucus and the CHRA’s Board of Directors as the Vice President. Her devotion to Indigenous communities expands far beyond the Provincial Housing Sector. Margaret actively represents the urban Indigenous voice at both national and international levels by addressing and advancing housing rights for all Indigenous Peoples.

In 2019 Margaret lead AHMA to partner with the government of British Columbia to create the historic Building BC: Indigenous Housing Fund (IHF). This monumental initiative made BC the first province in Canada to offer provincial funding to all Indigenous Peoples living both on-reserve and in Urban, Rural and Northern regions.

Plenary Session: Forging renewed relations for reconciliation & sustainability
2 – 3 p.m.

This plenary session will be a discussion on opportunities for municipal leadership to advance reconciliation and action in our communities. Hear from Indigenous and municipal leaders on perspectives, actions, and opportunities for reconciliation and how to embed it in community sustainability. It is time to go beyond acknowledgments and begin implementing action.


Tara Marsden, Senior Indigenous Advisor for the Healthy Watersheds Initiative and a member of Gitanyow First Nation

Tara Marsden headshot

Tara Marsden, Senior Indigenous Advisor for the Healthy Watersheds Initiative, is from the Lax Ganeda (Frog) Clan of Gitanyow Huwilp of the Gitksan peoples. Her primary focus over her 20-year career has been advancing sustainable development and operationalizing free, prior and informed consent for Indigenous peoples. Drawing on her master’s degree in Political Science and her upbringing in Gitksan Ayookxw (laws), Tara has worked for several First Nations and provincial governments, academia, philanthropic organizations, and most recently for her own nation Gitanyow as Wilp Sustainability Director. In 2021, Tara established Hlimoo Sustainable Solutions to continue her life’s work as an independent consultant in her homelands of the Gitksan people.

Elaine Alec, Indigenous knowledge keeper from the Pelkamulaxw and Soorimpt peoples

Elaine Alec headshot

Elaine Alec (she/her) is an author, political advisor, women’s advocate and spiritual thought leader and teacher. She is a direct descendant of hereditary chiefs, Pelkamulaxw and Soorimpt.

Rebecca Alty, Mayor, City of Yellowknife

rebecca Alty headshot

Rebecca Alty became the 15th Mayor of Yellowknife when she was sworn into office on November 5, 2018. Prior to being elected as Mayor, she served as a Yellowknife City Councillor for two terms, from 2012 to 2018. Previously, she worked in communications and community relations for the Diavik Diamond Mine, NGO's, and the Government of the Northwest Territories. Outside of work, Rebecca enjoys walking, gardening, and traveling.

Charlie Clark, Mayor of Saskatoon, City of Saskatoon

Charlie Clark headshot

Re-elected Mayor of Saskatoon in 2020, Charlie Clark is passionate about Saskatoon. His approach is centered on the belief that partnerships among groups with different perspectives can offer the best solutions to the challenges being faced by cities across the world. He is committed to building a community where people see each other’s strengths instead of differences, where families can thrive, and children are able to see a future for themselves here.

Previous to serving as mayor, Charlie was the Ward 6 City Councillor for ten years. Before elected life, he worked in the areas of mediation and community economic development. He has bachelor’s degrees in conflict resolution and education as well as a master’s degree in environmental studies.

Showcase reception 5 à 7
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Friday, February 10

Plenary Session: The economic advantage of climate action
11 a.m. – 12 p.m.

A pandemic. Rising inflation. Critical infrastructure deficits. Extreme weather events. The pressures on Canadian communities have maybe never been greater. But there are opportunities to unite around the pressures while building strong and resilient communities. This panel will explore how municipalities are responding to these aligned threats while concurrently making the case that serious action is needed and will lead to stronger economic health in our communities.


Chris Henderson, CEO, Indigenous Clean Energy

Chris Rickett, Director of Economic Growth, Culture and Entrepreneurship, City of Markham & Founder of My Main Street Initiative

Chris Rickett headshot

Chris Rickett is the Director of Economic Growth, Culture and Entrepreneurship for the City of Markham, where he leads a team of dedicated public servants focused on community-building and growing Canada’s second largest technology cluster. He is also the founder of My Main Street Initiative.

Chris is a proud public servant and civic innovator with a keen interest in urban planning, economic development, technology, municipal infrastructure, and political economy. His past vocations include municipal councillor, economic development professional, environmental planner, eco-business zone creator, publisher, magician, punk rock concert promoter, taxi driver, and community rabble-rouser.

Chris holds a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies with Honours in Planning from the University of Waterloo and a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Western Ontario, both of which he completed while serving as a municipal councillor in the City of Stratford, Ontario.

Closing Ceremony
1:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.


Wednesday, February 8

Transformative communities: pathways to net zero from the ground
9:30 – 10:45 a.m.

Shaping sustainable communities
9:30 – 10:45 a.m.

Being the face of your community's climate action plan: communication, decision-making and leadership  
9:30 – 10:45 a.m.

Building support within your municipal staff team
3:15 – 4:45 p.m.

Ottawa's journey to net zero
3:15 – 4:45 p.m.

Models for municipal collaboration
3:15 – 4:45 p.m.

Thursday, February 9

Financing innovations for your sustainability projects
9 – 10:30 a.m.

Sustainable affordable housing for all
9 – 10:30 a.m.

Team building to get support and drive action
3:15 – 4:45 p.m.

Climate resilience and natural assets
3:15 – 4:45 p.m.

Measuring and accounting for your municipal net-zero target
3:15 – 4:45 p.m.

Embedding equity in climate decision-making
3:15 – 4:45 p.m.

Friday, February 10

Crafting a business case that builds support
9:30 – 10:45 a.m.

Waste workshop
9:30 – 10:45 a.m.

Getting your climate action plan on track for Net-Zero
9:30 – 10:45 a.m.

Training Sessions

Training sessions are only available on Tuesday, February 7 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Intersectional Environmentalism

In this full-day training session, participants will have the opportunity to develop a shared language around environmental racism, intersectionality and climate justice. Participants will leave the space with a deeper understanding of systemic racism and will explore case study examples of the manifestation of environmental racism in (what we currently know as) Canada. Facilitators will guide participants to reflect on why sustainability policies and programs must be intersectional and how social justice and equity movements can guide this work. During the session, participants can expect to engage in self-reflection, facilitated dialogue and interactive, practice-based activities.

Facilitators will engage participants in both French and English for the duration of the session, and all training materials will be provided in both official languages.

Guest Presenters:

Samantha Matters, Founding Director, Future Ancestors Services Inc.

Samantha Matters headshot

Samantha Matters, Founding Director, Future Ancestors Services Inc., is an accomplished academic, a published Indigenous researcher, an award-winning foresight strategist and a proud member of the Métis Nation of Alberta. Her experience spans academia as well as both the public and non-profit sectors and has largely focused on serving Indigenous communities in Canada. Samantha’s career began in the public sector after completing her Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science from the University of Alberta, Augustana Faculty. In her role as an Engagement Coordinator at the Government of Alberta in the department of Indigenous Relations, she focused on consultation and engagement around environmental policy development. Transitioning into the non-profit space, Samantha served as the Executive Director of the Centre for Indigenous Innovation and Technology (CIIT) in Toronto from 2019 to 2020. CIIT was created to address the underrepresentation of Indigenous peoples in the technology and innovation sectors in Canada. Working directly alongside the organization’s founder, Samantha was instrumental in the conceptualization of the Centre’s first technology training program: an 8-week educational opportunity for Indigenous youth that will be delivered in partnership with Kenjgewin Teg Educational Institute and OCAD University.

Samantha’s expertise in youth engagement and intergenerational partnerships is extensive and in May of 2020, she was asked to join the Indigenous Clean Energy Social Enterprise, headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Samantha led the development of the organization’s first-ever youth-focused capacity-building program. Her commitment to collaboratively developing the program with other Indigenous youth, integration of holistic learning, and incorporation of intergenerational spaces has been well received by the social enterprise’s leadership team as well as external funding agencies.

Chúk Odenigbo, Founding Director, Future Ancestors Services Inc.

Chuk Odenigbo headshot

Proudly Franco-Albertan, Chúk Odenigbo, Founding Director, Future Ancestors Services Inc., is passionate about the ways in which the environment impacts human health and the question of justice in our understanding of how our societies function. This passion manifests itself in his work as the founding director of Future Ancestors Services where he focuses on environmental justice and climate justice in his in his efforts to not only make green space accessible to everyone but to fight environmental racism in all its forms and to popularize the understanding that you cannot create a society that is environmentally friendly if society is not just. Chúk is also a doctoral student in medical geography. His research aims to knowledge to better understand the impacts of the environment (biophysical, socio-cultural, socio-economic, and socio-political) on the vulnerability/resilience of a community to disease.

Chúk has worked in various sectors, such as the oil and gas industry, the fashion industry, the retail industry as well as in academia. He is interested in the multi-disciplinary nature of our lives and exploring new solutions to recurring problems. Chúk has been ranked as one of the Top 30 Change Makers under 30 by the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation, one of the Top 10 Young Franco-Albertan Leaders by Radio-Canada and was named by Starfish as one of Canada's top 25 environmentalists under 25 for three years. In addition, Chúk is the recipient of the Eugène C. Trottier Award of Excellence, which recognizes contribution to the visibility of the Alberta francophonie for his work.

Trust-building for community engagement

Increasingly, communities are using collaboration to tackle some of their most complex challenges. Collaborative success requires the engagement and commitment of partners, while a lack of trust can take collaborative efforts off track. Paying attention to actions that build trust, create connections and deal with mistrust are key strategies for collaborative success. 

This interactive workshop focuses on the core leadership competency of building trust.  Participants in this workshop will walk away with ideas, tools and approaches to effectively engage diverse community partners and intentionally build trusting relationships and collaborative impact. Come prepared to share your experiences and insights on how to build trust. 

The workshop will be presented in English, but materials and language support will be available in French.  

Moderator: Yvonne Ritchie, Advisor, Capacity Development, FCM

Guest Presenters:

Liz Weaver, President and Co-CEO, Tamarack Institute

Liz Weaver headshot

Liz Weaver is the Co-CEO of Tamarack Institute where she is leading the Tamarack Learning Centre. The Tamarack Learning Centre has a focus on advancing community change efforts and does this by focusing on five strategic areas including collective impact, collaborative leadership, community engagement, community innovation and evaluating community impact. Liz is well-known for her thought leadership on collective impact and is the author of several popular and academic papers on the topic. She is a co-catalyst partner with the Collective Impact Forum. Liz is passionate about the power and potential of communities getting to impact on complex issues. Prior to her current role at Tamarack, Liz led the Vibrant Communities Canada team and assisted place-based collaborative tables develop their frameworks of change and supported and guided their projects from idea to impact.

Life cycle costing: Pathway to net-zero emissions

We all have a role to play in Canada’s efforts to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.  One of the tools municipalities can use to support this legislation during procurement is Life Cycle Costing (LCC).  Join Local Authority Services (LAS) and TdS Dixon Inc. (Knowenergy) as they guide you through the world of LCC in this dynamic and interactive workshop.  Follow in the footsteps of one municipality that took a long-term view on financials to integrate LCC and principles of sustainability into their net-zero facility. Attendees will be introduced to LCC concepts for municipal projects, enabling participants to achieve net-zero targets and shift their focus from low pricing to sustainable long-term options and greater savings over time. The workshop includes hands-on exercises, practical tools, and a RETScreen demonstration. 

Guest Presenters:

Christian Tham, Municipal Program Specialist, LAS

Christian Tham headshot

In his role at Local Authority Services (AMO/LAS), Christian works closely with Ontario municipalities to help them implement energy conservation measures and train staff in energy management and environmental sustainability. A solid background in business management also enhances Christian’s ability to perform cost benefit analysis, empowering municipalities to make financially informed decisions on energy related projects.

Christian has extensive expertise in environmental sustainability and energy management mainly focussed on the municipal sector. He holds a master’s degree in Environment & Sustainability from Western University in London, and a master’s degree in Environment & Development from the University of Natal in South Africa.

Stephen Dixon, President, TdS Dixon Inc. (Knowenergy)

Stephen Dixon headshot

For over 40 years Stephen Dixon, President of TdS Dixon, has provided energy management services to a diverse range of industrial, commercial, institutional, and utility organizations. Broadly recognized as a leader in energy management training, his focus is simple; to empower all that he works with to use energy more effectively by developing individual skills, organizational best practices and providing tools for energy management. Stephen has extensive energy management experience, including 900+ energy assessments, over 2,500 energy management workshops and has inspired over 30,000 individuals from more than 1,300 organizations. Stephen holds a master’s degree in Systems Design Engineering from the University of Waterloo and a Bachelor of Physics from the University of Prince Edward Island.

Study Tours

Study Tours are only available on Tuesday, February 7 from 9 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Zibi District: Canada’s new sustainable waterfront city

Get a close look at Zibi, the Waterfront City, when you sign up to tour the National Capital Region’s new borderless locality. It will be Canada’s most sustainable neighbourhood, a master-planned community offering endless paths for the over 5000 people who will call this place their home. When you sign up for this half-day tour, you’ll be taken into the One Planet Living sustainability framework behind the development of this transformative project, and you’ll explore the District Energy Plant to get into the heart of net-zero innovation. With this development, you will envision community, reconciliation, connection, and healthy living, all through eco-friendly planning. Join this tour to see for yourself how such a sustainable concept can come to life.

Tour Hosts:

  • Taryn Glancy, Project Manager, Zibi  
  • Jeff Westeinde, CEO, Zibi 

Coming full circle: circularity in Gatineau

Interested in learning more about circular economies and how they come to life? Join the City of Gatineau study tour to hear about their transition to a circular economy and listen as they discuss their waste management systems and sustainable procurement.

As a bonus, participants have the chance to visit one of the city's ecocentres, which has offered residents comprehensive municipal waste collection services for over 10 years. Participants will see first-hand how the city is closing the loop and educating its residents about waste management.

This tour will be offered with both English and French language supports.

*The City of Gatineau was a participant in the Circular Cities and Regions First Cohort in 2021-22.

Tour Hosts:

  • Annie-France Major, Project Manager PGMR, City of Gatineau
  • Chloé Gourde-Bureau, Project Manager PGMR, City of Gatineau

Stop & Go green building tour: Sustainability practices in Ottawa municipal buildings

Join the Stop & Go tour to see green buildings throughout the city of Ottawa, showcasing hallmark sustainability practices. From sustainable affordable housing to EV charging stations, this tour demonstrates how building practices meet sustainability and resiliency goals – alongside goals to be on track for net zero. Learn how new and existing buildings are both environmentally friendly and community conscious. Representatives from the City of Ottawa will accompany this journey to share their unique experiences and answer any questions you may have.   

Tour Hosts:

  • Melissa Jort-Conway, Planner II, Climate Change and Resiliency Team, City of Ottawa
  • Rebecca Hagen, Director of Canadian federal corporation registered by Corporations Canada - Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED)


Tuesday, February 7

SCC Pre-Mixer

Thursday, February 9

SCC Pub Night Social

Friday, February 10

Sustainable brews: sample local craft beer
2 p.m. –  5 p.m.

After learning and networking during the conference, participants will be able to unwind on this social brewery tour. Partakers get to put their feet up (figuratively) as they’re taken to two craft breweries. Participants will be able to sample several local brews and see first-hand what Ottawa has to offer. Participants can expect to learn how brewing is made sustainable and how breweries forge meaningful relationships with municipalities.

Tour Hosts:

  • Brad Campeau, Owner, Brew Donkey Tours

Industry Showcase

Daily Wednesday, February 8 to Thursday, February 9 from 7:30 am – 6:45 p.m.

© 2022 Federation of Canadian Municipalities