Conversations with Power
Experience lectures from our archive.
Established in 1903, as a response to Canadian political unrest, the Empire Club ofCanada (ECC) quickly became a leading speakers’ forum. Beginning with speeches to address Canada’s relationships with the British Empire and the United States, the ECCcontinues to tackle issues that affect the lives of Canadians.
The club invites speakers to present various perspectives—including those that may not be popular but should be heard. Since its inception, the ECC has hosted 3500prominent Canadian and international leaders, including Prince Edward, the Prince ofWales (later Edward VIII), Winston Churchill, Ronald Reagan, Audrey Hepburn,Margaret Mead, Christopher Plumber, Roberta Bondar, Maureen Forrester, AdrienneClarkson, Margaret Thatcher, Vladamir Putin and Bill Gates, to name but a few. Topics encompass business, politics, education, trade, labour, culture, international issues, as well as, other relevant topics that emerge.
Get up close and personal to the most relevant issues of the day and network with other like minded members.
Topic: Post-Budget Breakfast Briefing
The Honourable Bill Morneau, P.C., M.P.
Bill Morneau is Canada’s Minister of Finance and has been in that role since 2015. He is the Member of Parliament for Toronto Centre, and an accomplished business leader.
As Canada’s Minister of Finance, Bill has played a key role in shaping government policy and initiatives, including the introduction of the Canada Child Benefit, tax cuts for the middle class and small businesses, and the negotiation of an enhanced Canada Pension Plan.
Between 1990 and 2015, Bill led the human resources firm, Morneau Shepell, through a period of transformational growth. Under his leadership, the firm grew from 200 employees to 4,000, becoming the largest firm of its kind in Canada, providing services to thousands of Canadian organizations and millions of Canadians.
As a community leader, Bill has worked to support the arts, help at-risk-youth, and improve access to health care and education. Over a period of 20 years, he served as the chair of the board at St. Michael’s Hospital, Chair of Covenant House and Chair of the C.D. Howe Institute, and sat on many boards, including at the Loran Scholars Foundation and the Learning Partnership.
Internationally, Bill founded a school for Somali and Sudanese girls in Kakuma Refugee Camp, a UNHCR camp in northern Kenya.
Bill has co-authored a book, The Real Retirement, and previously served as pension investment advisor to the Ontario government. He holds a BA from Western University, an MSc (Econ) from the London School of Economics and an MBA from INSEAD.
Topic: Leading Toronto Forward
As the 65th Mayor of Toronto, John Tory has led the way in tackling traffic congestion and building transit.
Mayor Tory has taken action to reduce commute times while moving forward with Toronto’s first-ever network transit plan that will see subway lines extended through the northwest end of the city into Vaughan and east to Scarborough, a significant expansion of the LRT network, and much greater use of GO lines across the city as part of SmartTrack, the Mayor’s signature transit initiative.
Since being elected to office in 2014, he has been focused on ensuring Toronto remains a livable and affordable city, leading City Council in passing successive budgets that kept taxes at or below the rate of inflation while investing in priority services including housing, parks and student nutrition. He has worked to make the city government more modern and effective, to deliver better services at a more competitive price, and to be more open and accountable to the public.
Born and raised in Toronto, Mayor Tory has spent his career giving back to the city he loves working with organizations like the United Way, St. Michael’s Hospital and Civic Action. In office, he has been a constant champion for Toronto, securing billions of dollars from the provincial and federal governments for transit, housing and other vital infrastructure. He uses his experience leading organizations and businesses to promote Toronto on the world stage, attract jobs and investment, and secure the city’s future as a global capital.
Mayor Tory began his career practicing law in Toronto, and he was later elected as a managing partner of one of Canada’s biggest law firms. In the 1980s he served as Principal Secretary to Premier Bill Davis and as Associate Secretary of the Ontario Cabinet. He has served as Commissioner of the Canadian Football League and as CEO of Rogers, one of the country’s largest cable companies. His time in politics dates back to 2004 when he was chosen to lead the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario, later serving as Leader of the Official Opposition at Queen’s Park.
Mayor Tory is a lifelong, and long-suffering, Toronto Maple Leafs fan – and is an avid supporter of all Toronto’s teams and attractions. Mayor Tory and his wife Barbara have been married for 39 years, have four children and five grandchildren.
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