$100 – $375

2018 Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative Conference

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Ajax Convention Centre

550 Beck Crescent

Ajax, ON L1Z 1C9

Canada

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You are invited to take in the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative Annual Meeting and Conference from June 13-15, 2018 in Ajax.

Celebrating 15 years of bringing together the best minds and most passionate advocates in water quality, this year’s conference theme is Charting a Course to Resilience.

Enjoy learning from and networking with elected officials from across the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence basins, environmental NGOs and water quality experts. Stay up-to-date on emerging trends in municipal resilience, set to the backdrop of Ajax’s picturesque Lake Ontario waterfront.

Scroll down for an overview of our engaging keynote speakers, dynamic presentations and exciting special events. More details to come!

Chart your course to Ajax!

For more information, visit glslcities.org/ajax

People using Ajax waterfront trail

Delegate Program

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

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Registration and Arrival
Hilton Garden Inn

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

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Events Open to Members Only

Board Meeting
Ajax Convention Centre

  • Cities Initiative board of directors meeting (closed).

Walking Tour of Ajax
Downtown Ajax

  • Members, companions and guests are invited to join an Ajax historian on a guided walking tour of Ajax. Learn about our storied history as home to Defence Industries Limited, the largest munitions plant in the British Commonwealth during WWII.

Woman worker at DIL factory

Regional Meetings
Ajax Convention Centre

  • Discussion of timely topics related to water quality in the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence basins, consideration of member resolutions.

Annual General Meeting
Ajax Convention Centre

  • The formal component of the event for members of the Cities Initiative.

Members’ Welcome Reception
St. Francis Centre

  • An official welcome to Ajax in our beautifully restored St. Francis Centre, set in the heart of Ajax’s Heritage Conservation District. The evening features a performance of “Bears, Trees and Stars” by the Chimera Project.

St. Francis Centre

Thursday, June 14, 2018

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Events Open to Members & Non-Members

Opening Ceremonies
Ajax Convention Centre

Keynote Speaker - Dan Egan, Author, The Death and Life of the Great LakesAjax Convention Centre

  • Award-winning author Dan Egan is a reporter at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and a senior water policy fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's School of Freshwater Sciences. His prize-winning book, The Death and Life of the Great Lakes examines the perils faced by the Great Lakes and the ways we can restore and preserve them for future generations. BONUS: Attendees to receive a copy of Egan's book!

News Conference
Ajax Waterfront

Waterfront Tour
Ajax Waterfront

  • Members and delegates are invited to discover Ajax’s waterfront, featuring the largest stretch of publicly owned waterfront in southern Ontario. The tour will highlight the history and conservation of the Ajax waterfront, focusing on the Town’s water quality and water advocacy work and dedication to preserving the natural landscape.

Resilience Solutions for Flooding and Extreme Weather Panel
Ajax Convention Centre

  • With more frequent and intense rain and flooding events and other extreme weather, solutions that build resiliency and preparedness are needed by Great Lakes and St. Lawrence municipalities. This panel explores the experiences of these municipalities with flooding and severe weather and provides tools and programs designed to help mitigate the impact of these events.

Nearshore Water Quality Panel, featuring Dr. Martin Auer
Ajax Convention Centre

  • Dr. Martin Auer, Michigan Technological University, with Jennifer Danahy, Partner and Certified Specialist (Environmental Law) Gowling WLP and Rachael Wraith, Senior Communications Officer, Town of Ajax discuss the scientific, legal and communications/outreach aspects of water quality work undertaken to protect the resilience of Ajax’s nearshore from algae.

Algae at the Ajax waterfront

Duffin Creek Water Pollution Control Plant Tour
Duffin Creek Water Pollution Control Plant

  • One of the largest Water Pollution Control Plants in North America, Duffin Creek WPCP is jointly owned and operated by the Regions of York and Durham. The subject of significant scientific study, this tour follows our Nearshore Water Quality panel discussion featuring the science of Dr. Martin Auer.

Coastal Resilience Solutions for Shoreline Municipalities Panel
Ajax Convention Centre

  • Coastal communities face unique challenges and need “out of the box” solutions when it comes to the impacts of climate change. This panel explores issues that Great Lakes and St. Lawrence communities are grappling with along their ever-changing shorelines, including maintaining public beaches and recreational waters, managing the impacts of shoreline erosion, and changes to recreational boating and commercial shipping.

Evening Under the Stars at the Ajax Waterfront
Rotary Park

  • Hosted at Ajax’s picturesque waterfront venue, this special gala is for members, companions and guests to celebrate with an evening under the stars. An upscale casual evening affair, guests are invited to take in a specially crafted meal featuring locally sourced food and drinks from the Greenbelt while enjoying live music and exciting entertainment showcasing Ajax’s diversity.

Friday, June 15, 2018

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Events Open to Members & Non-Members

Keynote speaker - Dr. Dianne Saxe, Environmental Commissioner of Ontario

Ajax Convention Centre

  • Dianne Saxe is the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario (ECO), a tough but fair watchdog over Ontario’s environmental, energy and climate performance, and guardian of the Environmental Bill of Rights, 1993 (EBR). Prior to her appointment, Dianne was one of Canada’s most respected environmental lawyers. She has 40 years’ unparalleled experience writing, interpreting, and litigating Ontario’s energy and environmental laws.

Tech Solutions for Climate Resilience Panel
Ajax Convention Centre

  • In the face of challenges posed by climate change, cities must embrace technology to build resiliency. In this panel, attendees will learn how technology can be used to help mitigate the uncertainty around the impacts of climate change, reduce communities’ GHG emissions, and foster better waste management. The panel will also discuss how technology is being used to help communities address harmful algal blooms, reduce energy related pollution emissions, and understand the threat of urban heat islands.

Hands-on Science Exploration at Greenwood Conservation Area
Greenwood Conservation Area

  • Delegates and guests will tour to Ajax’s beautiful Greenwood Conservation Area, where the Town’s Sustainability Coordinator and partners Toronto and Region Conservation Authority and Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters will provide walking tours and hands-on activities showcasing Ajax’s commitment to water quality.

*Program expected to end at 2 p.m.

Students learning about water

Companion Program

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

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Walking Tour of Ajax
Downtown Ajax

  • See description above.

Parkwood Estate Tour and Tea
Parkwood Estate

  • Companions have the opportunity to experience a tour and tea at the historic Parkwood Estate. The tour will explore the luxurious interior space of the Parkwood Estate mansion that has been the set of famous films and television shows including X-Men and Bomb Girls. Learn about the vibrant lifestyle of a Canadian auto-baron and his family before ending the tour in the Orchid House Tearoom.

Parkwood Estate

Welcome Reception
St. Francis Centre

  • See description above.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

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North Durham Tours

  • Explore the scenic landscape of Northern Durham and its unique venues and activities.

Evening Under the Stars at the Ajax Waterfront
Rotary Park

  • See description above.

Friday, June 15, 2018

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Hands-on Science Exploration at Greenwood Conservation Area
Greenwood Conservation Area

  • See description above.

*Program expected to end at 2 p.m.

Please note, itinerary is subject to change. A finalized itinerary will be provided to all registered delegates.

Book your room at one of the locations below to receive a special group rate:

Hilton Garden Inn
500 Beck Crescent, Ajax ON

Homewood Suites Hilton
600 Beck Crescent, Ajax ON

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Date and Time

Location

Ajax Convention Centre

550 Beck Crescent

Ajax, ON L1Z 1C9

Canada

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