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: How Big Data is Changing Professional Sports
Kyle Dubas was named the 17th General Manager in the Club’s history on May 11, 2018 after originally joining the Leafs as Assistant General Manager in July of 2014.
In his role as Assistant General Manager, Dubas held multiple responsibilities including player personnel, managing the club’s player development department and farm system, managing the organizations Research & Development department, and overseeing the organization’s top prospects as General Manager of the Maple Leafs’ AHL affiliate, the Toronto Marlies. In his four seasons as General Manager of the Marlies, the team compiled a record of 190-90-20-4 and captured the Macgregor Kilpatrick Trophy as AHL regular season champion in 2015-16 and 2017-18. In 2017-18, the Marlies reached 50 wins for the third time in team history (2007-08, 2015-16), set the League record for most road wins in a season (30) and earned the franchise’s first Calder Cup championship.
Before joining the Maple Leafs, Dubas served as General Manager of the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in the Ontario Hockey League for three seasons from 2011-12 to 2013-14. During his tenure, his teams finished with an overall record of 109-76-7-12, which included two post-season berths and a West Division title in 2013-14. From 2011 through 2014, the Greyhounds had 14 players drafted to the National Hockey League; second most of all OHL teams over that span.
At the time of his hiring by the Greyhounds, the Sports Management Graduate from Brock University (Dean’s List honours) became the second youngest General Manager in OHL history at the age of 25.
In 2015, Dubas was recognized by Forbes Magazine as one of the sports industry’s brightest young stars in their annual Top 30 Under 30 in Sports list. He was also honoured with the Brock University Distinguished Young Alumni Award in March of 2015.
Dubas and his wife, Shannon, have one son.
Bobby Webster enters his sixth season with the Raptors and second as the team’s general manager. He manages the day-to-day basketball operations of the franchise and provides his expertise on strategic team building, roster and personnel planning, and player acquisitions. During his time with the Raptors, Webster has also served as assistant general manager and vice president, basketball management & strategy.
Webster came to the Raptors after working for the NBA league office in New York for seven seasons in the legal department. He brings with him a vast working knowledge of the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) and was part of the team that worked with the NBA Labor Relations Committee to negotiate the 2011 CBA with the National Basketball Players Association. While at the NBA, Webster advised front office personnel from all 30 teams on CBA matters related to salary cap/luxury tax planning, player contract negotiations & analytics, and trades.
In Conversation with…
Elliotte Friedman – Analyst and Insider, NHL on Sportsnet & Hockey Night in Canada
With a remarkable career in sports media spanning more than 20 years and earning him a reputation as one of the most respected broadcasters in the country, Elliotte Friedman joined Sportsnet in June 2014 as an insider and analyst for the network’s national NHL coverage and Hockey Night in Canada broadcasts.
In addition to his on-air role, Friedman regularly contributes to sportsnet.ca, analyzing the latest NHL news in his regular “30 Thoughts” column and, most recently, a new podcast of the same name alongside Jeff Marek.
Prior to joining Sportsnet, Freidman was a mainstay of CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada, serving as both an in-studio analyst and reporter for 11 seasons, contributing news and analysis throughout the regular season and Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Throughout his 20-plus years in sports, Freidman has covered numerous major sporting events including multiple Olympic Games, NHL, MLB, CFL, NBA and more.
Topic: The Changing Nature of Political Communications
Sarada Peri is a speechwriter and communications strategist who has helped top leaders and thinkers – from Fortune 50 CEOs to the President of the United States – inspire and persuade audiences.
She was Special Assistant to the President and Senior Speechwriter for President Barack Obama. Prior to joining the White House, she was a Principal at West Wing Writers, where she worked with corporate, political and non-profit clients on speechwriting, speech delivery, op-eds, books, and message strategy. She was also a member of the 2012 and 2016 Democratic National Convention speechwriting teams.
A recovering policy wonk, Sarada worked on Capitol Hill as lead education and health care policy advisor to former Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA). She started her career as a high school English teacher in New Orleans through Teach for America.
Sarada graduated from Tufts University and holds a Master in Public Policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School. She is currently a Visiting Global Fellow at the Ryerson Leadership Lab.
In Conversation with:
Don Guy has been described as a “legendary political strategist”, a “brilliant strategist” and a “policy wizard” who has a unique understanding of the nexus between communication and policy. He is pleased to return home to Pollara as owner and Chief Strategist.
He is a founding partner of KTG Public Affairs and a member of global research and strategy firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research and has provided the research and strategies that have fuelled some of the most successful public affairs campaigns in Canada.
Don is treasurer of the InterAction Council of Former Heads of State and Government, an international NGO think tank. Don’s graduate academic training was at the University of Toronto, where he took his MA and doctoral studies in political and democratic behaviour.
IN PARTNERSHIP WITH: