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Couchiching Award for Public Policy Leadership
Speaker Bios 
Reading List
2003 Government and Corporate Sponsors
Individual Sponsors 

72nd Annual Summer Conference, August 7–10, 2003

Continentalism: What’s in it for us?

Photos from the 2003 Conference

A Quicktime slide show of photos taken during the conference has  been posted. You can view it online or download a zipped file of the “movie”, unzip it and view it offline. A free copy of the Windows or Mac Quicktime Player is available at The same photos in the slide show are also posted on a web page.

Photos of speakers are posted with their presentations, and of panels are posted with session summaries.

2003 Media Clips

August 1 [sic], Chicago Blog Archives, Ed Asner Quote
August 4, The Hill Times, “Michael Wilson recognized for public policy leadership”
August 7,
Bloomberg, “Bank of Canada’s Dodge Comments on What Drives Dollar Movements” by Kevin Carmichael
August 7,
Reuters (posted on Yahoo News, and also published on Reuters U.K. site), “No North American Monetary Union Yet – BoC” by Gilbert Le Gras
[Posted on Yahoo News, and also published on Reuters UK site]
August 8, Investment Executive, “More harmonization of securities rules needed: Dodge”
August 8, Orillia Packet & Times, “Dodge putting trust in free trade” by Jim Purnell
August 8, The Globe and Mail, “Several ways to improve trading relationships, Dodge says” by Gloria Galloway
August 9, Orillia Packet & Times, “The pros and cons of free trade” by Colin McKim
August 9, Orillia Packet & Times, “Tories stick by free trade: Wilson” by Daniel Birch
August 9, The Globe and Mail, “Couchiching delegates debate free trade” by Gloria Galloway
August 9, The Toronto Star, “We have much to mull on integration with U.S.” by David Crane
August 10, Orillia Packet & Times, “Washington and Canada have different military visions: Axworthy” (Canadian Press)
August 11,
Associated Press (posted on Entertainment Town News, Miami Herald, Newsday, The News and Observer, and CNN’s Entertainment News), “Asner Blames Policy for Filmmaking Woes”
August 11, Calgary Sun, “Canada not security ‘player’” (Canadian Press)
August 11,
CanWest News, “Mexico seeks more trade with Canada” by Siri Agrell
August 11,
E-Library – AP Worldstream, “Actor bemoans loss of film jobs from U.S. to Canada”
August 11, Edmonton Journal, “Freedom means Cokes, baths and privacy” by Francine Dube
August 11, National Post, “Ottawa to investigate Saudi torture allegations” by Siri Agrell
August 11,
Newsday, “Asner Blames Policy for Filmmaking Woes” (Associated Press)
August 11, Orillia Packet & Times, “Asner commends Canada on taking movie work” by John Swartz
August 11, Orillia Packet & Times, “Graham touts closer ties to U.S.” by Jim Purnell
August 11, Ottawa Citizen, “Saudis set to open long-empty embassy” by Kathryn May and Siri Agrell (variations also ran in the Halifax Daily Herald)
August 11,
The Beaufort Gazette (Beaufort, South Carolina), “Ed Asner blames NAFTA trade agreement for filmmaking woes” (Associated Press)
August 11, The Globe and Mail, “Fix free trade” by Ann Summers (letter to the editor)
August 11, The Globe and Mail, “Protect Canadian identity, Asner warns” by John Swartz
August 11, The Leader-Post, “An identity worth protecting”
August 11,
The Tacoma Tribune, “Ed Asner blames NAFTA trade agreement for filmmaking woes” (Associated Press)
August 11, The Times of India, “Actor bemoans loss of film jobs from US to Canada” (AP)
August 11, The Toronto Star, “Canada’s global focus lost: Axworthy” (Canadian Press)
August 11, The Toronto Star, “Protect Canadian identity, Asner says” (Canadian Press)
August 11, Waterloo Record, “You’re fools if you lose Canadian identity, Asner tells conference” (Canadian Press)
August 11,, Asner went to Ontario to join in a panel discussion on national cultural identity (AP photo)
August 12, Houston Chronicle (with photo), “Asner worries about Toronto standing in for Chicago” (Associated Press)
August 12,, “Ed Asner Says, ‘We Are Pigs’” by James Hirsen
August 12, The Toronto Star, “Keeping Canada sovereign” (editorial)
August 13, The Toronto Star, “U.S.-Canada ties need practical, not grand, ideas” by David Crane
August 16, The Toronto Star, “We do have a choice about closer links to U.S.” by David Crane
August 18, Time Canada, “What’s All the Fuss About Being Canadian?” by Stephen Handelman

Fifteen years ago this year, Canada and the United States signed the Free Trade Agreement. Ten years ago, Mexico joined in and the North American Free Trade Agreement was born. In 2003, it is now time to take stock. The 72nd Couchiching Conference will examine the impact of these close continental ties on life in North America.

A panoply of excellent speakers from Canada, the United States and Mexico will stimulate lots of lively and intelligent debate in true Couchiching tradition. Among our speakers: David Dodge, the straight-shooting Governor of the Bank of Canada, will discuss the role of the Canadian dollar in an ever-integrating North American market and the implications for Canada; best-selling author Mel Hurtig, whose most recent book is entitled The Vanishing Country: Is It Too Late to Save Canada, worries that continental integration will promote the loss of Canada’s political sovereignty; Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, The Honourable Bill Graham, will bring the realities of today’s international negotiations and diplomacy to the conference. Other expert speakers will enliven panel discussions on issues ranging from security to culture, from economics to environment, with a Canadian, American, Mexican or continental perspective.

Be part of the debate! We welcome your voice.


Available biographies are linked from the speaker’s name.
Speaker notes are posted as they become available.


David Dodge was appointed Governor of the Bank of Canada in 2001, for a seven-year term. As Governor, he is Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bank.

A native of Toronto, Mr. Dodge received a Bachelor’s Degree (Honours) in Economics from Queen's University in 1965, and a Ph.D. in Economics from Princeton. From 1968 to 1972, Mr. Dodge was an Assistant Professor of Economics at Queen's University and published several articles and books on labour economics and public finance.

    In 1972, David Dodge joined the public service where he was a research officer and later Chief of Tax Analysis with the Department of Finance. He went on to direct research efforts at Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the Anti-Inflation Board and the Ministry of State for Economic Development.

    Mr. Dodge left the federal government in 1977 to become Professor of International Economics and Canadian Studies at the School of Advanced International Studies, John Hopkins University. From 1979 to 1980, he also directed the International Economics Program of the Institute on Research in Public Policy.

    David Dodge rejoined the public service in July 1980 in the Department of Employment and Immigration, first directing the work of the Labour Market Development Task Force, then as Assistant Deputy Minister, Strategic Policy and Planning. In 1984, he returned to the Department of Finance where he served as Assistant Deputy Minister of Fiscal Policy and Economic Analysis, then as Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of the Tax Policy and Legislation Branch. In 1989, David Dodge became Associate Deputy Minister of Finance with responsibilities as Canada's G-7 Deputy and in July 1992 was appointed Deputy Minister of Finance, where he served for five years. In that role, he also served on the Bank's Board of Directors.

    During the 1997-98 academic year, Mr. Dodge took leave from the federal government to work as a Senior Fellow in the Faculty of Commerce at the University of British Columbia and as a Visiting Professor in the Department of Economics at Simon Fraser University.

    Mr. Dodge returned to the federal public service in 1998 when he was appointed Deputy Minister of Health, where he served until his appointment as Governor of the Bank of Canada.

    DAVID McGOWN, President CIPA

    Evening Reception


Presentation of the first Annual Couchiching Award for Excellence in Public Policy Leadership to THE HON. MICHAEL WILSON
Mr. Wilson was chosen for his work while in government in the areas of tax and fiscal policy, FTA and NAFTA as well post politics in his pursuit to increase public awareness and accountability in the area of mental health. A number of his ex-colleagues will be joining us for dinner that evening as will some of the Toronto mayoral candidates and other dignitaries.


A. EnviroReform (John Kirton)
B. Is culture at risk? (Susan Murray) (discussion summary)
C. Broadening vs. deepening integration – which way do we move? (Bob Seguin)
D. Youth defines the new agenda (Sonali Thakkar) (discussion summary)
Conversation with Eric Koch, author of Arabian Nights 1914


PhotoFirst elected as Member of Parliament for Toronto Centre-Rosedale in 1993, Bill Graham was appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs in January 2002.

From 1995 to 2002, Mr. Graham served as Chairman of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and Inter-national Trade. Under his Chairmanship, the Committee produced important reports on issues including Canada's interests in the World Trade Organization, Canada's role in Kosovo, the implementation of legislation for the International Criminal Court, and the Summit of the Americas in Quebec City.

    Active in international parliamentary associations, Mr. Graham was elected founding President of the Inter-Parliamentary Forum of the Americas. He has served as Vice-President and Treasurer of the Parliamentary Association of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and as Treasurer of Liberal International.

    Mr. Graham was born in Montreal and grew up in Vancouver before going on to study at Upper Canada College, Trinity College, the University of Toronto (B.A. Hon., LL.B.), and the University of Paris (Doctorate in Law).

    In Toronto, Mr. Graham practised law at Fasken & Calvin, specializing in civil litigation and international business transactions, and served on the boards of directors of various public and private Canadian corporations. Subsequently, he taught International Trade Law, Public International Law, and the Law of the European Community at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. He also served as Director of the Centre of International Studies at the University of Toronto. Mr. Graham has been a visiting lecturer in law at McGill University and the University of Montreal, and is an honorary life member of the Canadian Council of International Law. In recognition of his commitment to public life and cooperation among peoples and nations, the William C. Graham Chair in International Law and Development has been established at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law.

    A past president of the Alliance Française of Toronto, Mr. Graham has been recognized for his contributions to French language and culture in Ontario by being granted the Prix Jean-Baptiste Rousseau, the Médaille d'argent de la ville de Paris (City of Paris Silver Medal), the Gold Medal of the Alliance française, and the Ordre du mérite de l'Association des juristes d'expression française de l'Ontario (Order of Merit of the Association of French-speaking Jurists of Ontario). He has been made a Chevalier of the Legion of Honour and a Chevalier of the Ordre de la Pléiade.

    DAVID McGOWN, President, CIPA


2003 Government and Corporate Sponsors

Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade /
Ministère des Affaires étrangères et du commerce international
Department of National Defence / Ministère de la Défence Nationale
Industry Canada / Industrie Canada
Ontario Ministry of Enterprise, Opportunity + Innovation
AstraZeneca Canada Inc.
Bank of Montreal
Bell Canada
Canadian Labour Congress
EnviReform Project
GlaxoSmithKline Canada
Henry of Pelham Estate Wineries
Jackman Foundation
RBC Financial Group
Sun Life Financial
The Marjorie and Gerald Bronfman Foundation
The Maytree Foundation
The Toronto Star
TD Bank Financial Group
U.S. Consulate General, Toronto, and U.S. Embassy, Ottawa
Via Rail

Individual Sponsors

    Madeline Ann Aksich, CM
    Sharon Baltman
    John Bonner
    Catherine Aczél Boivie
    Jane Brenneman Gibson
    Gloria Buchanan
    Gwen Burrows
    John Butcher
    E. Jane Cendon
    Elizabeth Dowdeswell
    Joyce and John Frid
    Gary Gibson
    John Harbon
    George Haynal
    Eric Koch
    Madeline Koch
    Eliane Labendz
    David Lakoff
    Margaret Lefebvre
    Roderick McFadyen
    David McGown
    Elizabeth Mulholland
    Geoffrey Pearson
    Ceta Ramkhalawansingh
    Magaret Roderigues
    Hanns Skoutajan
    Eileen Swinton
    Louise Tardif
    Lynne Verchere