Both a provincial and federal election are on the horizon.

Are your members organized for an effective advocacy campaign? Do your members see value in advocacy? Want to engage with other Government Relations (GR) and Public Affairs professionals to learn how you can leverage your members’ expertise into advocacy success?

On July 21st, join PAAC Ontario to hear a diverse panel of GR and Public Affairs professionals for an engaging discussion to learn how you can reinforce the value of advocacy to your membership, and how you can leverage your members’ expertise into advocacy success.

Following the panel discussion, there will be breakout sessions from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm where you will have the chance to discuss and learn best practices with other professionals.

Your members bring exceptional value to the table, so unleash that potential!


Carla Ventin, Sr. Vice President of Government Relations, Food, Health & Consumer Products of Canada

Carla has been leading Food, Health &Consumer Products of Canada’s government relations from the Ottawa Office formore than 12 years, representing companies that make the vast majority of food, health and consumer goods found ons tore shelves, restaurants and in people’s homes.

Carla has extensive experience in public affairs in the private, government and non-profit sectors in Canada and abroad, with 15years specifically in agriculture and agri-food.

Prior to joining FHCP, Carla worked in federal politics as a director of communications and press secretary to two federal cabinet ministers including the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. She owned her own public affairs firm for several years and worked as a consultant at NATIONAL Public Relations.

Outside of Canada, Carla did political party development work in Washington DC for the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs.  In Hungary, she worked for NATO as the country was joining the alliance and was responsible for launching the first NATO Information and Research Centre in the country.  She was also a visiting university lecturer on international relations in Budapest.

Carla received her masters degrees from the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs and the University of Waterloo, and an undergraduate degree from the University of Guelph.  She grew up in the small fishing town of Port Dover on Lake Erie with her Hungarian and Argentinian family.    

Akosua Alagaratnam, Executive Director, First Work

Prior to joining the organization, Akosua worked as a senior public affairs professional, primarily focused on policy affecting marginalized communities and youth. During her tenure with the Provincial Minister of Children and Youth Services, Akosua led the Youth Justice and Youth Opportunity policy and also worked directly with multiple agencies, as well as frontline staff, to advocate for marginalized youth. As a senior policy advisor with the Provincial Minister of Finance, Akosua effectively advised on policy and legislation spanning a diverse portfolio, including labour, children and youth services, community and social services and correctional services. With over six years of experience in government, combined with seven years as the board representative for the Region of Peel Women’s Centre – Interim Place, Akosua is an established driver of effective policy-making, communications, public affairs, and community engagement.

Akosua currently sits on the council for the Canadian Council for Youth Prosperity and is a on the board of the Canadian Coalition of Community-Based Employability Training.

Krista Orendorff, Vice President of Public Affairs, Council of Ontario Universities

She leads COU’s communications and government relations strategy through building relationships with government officials and key stakeholders and leveraging public awareness to advance the priorities of Ontario’s universities and how they are partnering in building a better future of our students, communities and province.

Krista has more than 19 years of experience working in public affairs at the provincial and international level. Prior to her work with the Council, Krista was employed by the Heart and Stroke Foundation where she led national advocacy campaigns and provincial government relations. Additionally, she held several positions for provincial Cabinet Ministers and worked internationally with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina.

After completing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Politics and History from St. Francis Xavier University, Krista received her Master of Science in Gender Relations fvrom the London School of Economics.

Huw Williams, President, Impact Public Affairs

Huw Williams is the President of Impact Public Affairs and specializes in government and media relations. With extensive experience in the print and broadcast media, he has appeared frequently as a corporate spokesperson on CBC and CTV national news. Mr. Williams’ government experience is diverse, having served as Acting Chief of Staff to the Deputy Prime Minister of Canada; as a Senior Special Assistant to the Minister of Constitutional Affairs; and as a Legislative Assistant to the Speaker of the Alberta Legislative Assembly. He also served as an intern to a United States Congressman from the Sixth District of Indiana. Mr. Williams authored “A Government Relations Guide For Directors of Non-Profit Organizations” published by the Canadian Society of Association Executives (CSAE). He also served on the board of directors for the Government Relations Institute of Canada (GRIC). In 2010, Williams was named worldwide Public Affairs Professional of the Year finalist by PRNews Magazine. Williams’ other accolades include the CSAE Griner Award for outstanding “Business Excellence”, one of The Hill Times’ Top 100 lobbyists in Canada, and the Ottawa Business Journal’s “Top Forty under 40 Award” for professional success and community involvement. Mr. Williams holds a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Ottawa and a Bachelor of Arts (Political Science) from the University of Calgary. He has also completed studies at the Université de Tours in France and is bilingual.


Nick Colosimo, Associate Director, Government Relations, Advocis, The Financial Advisors Association of Canada

 Nick has been the Associate Director of Government Relations for Advocis, The Financial Advisors Association of Canada, for nearly 3 years. Advocis  is Canada’s oldest and largest voluntary professional association of Financial Advisors and Financial Planners, with over 15,000 members across the country.

 He leads the Association’s advocacy efforts and manages its advocacy committees across the country.

Prior to joining Advocis, Nick spent nearly a decade working in federal politics. He then went on to work in the private and non-profit sectors, being a Government Relations Advisor at Desjardins General Insurance Group, and the Manager of Government Relations at the Canadian Chiropractic Association.  

 Nick grew up in Niagara Falls, and is proud to call the Niagara Region home.  He has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Algoma University, where – in his first year -  he was elected to the Students’ Association for a term.


1:00 PM-1:45 PM - Panel Discussion

1:45 PM-2:00 PM - Audience Q&A

2:00 PM-3:00 PM - Breakout Sessions Lead by Panelists


Members: Free

Non-Members: $20


About UDocs

UDocs Media Inc. is a social enterprise that promotes and leads the development and production of edutainment media content to advance the rule of law, professional ethics, social justice, and corporate social responsibility.  UDocs creates accredited continuing professional education (CPE/CPD) courses featuring engaging documentary films as case studies, followed by comprehensive post-screening panel discussions with leading experts, scholars and practitioners.

Attendees will be provided with a free access code to the course: Notwithstanding that focuses on the importance of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Human rights, mutual respect and dialogue to foster equality, diversity and inclusion to counter the rise of populism and racism in our Canadian society.  Adopting a creative approach to documentary film-making, the film case study depicts a doomsday scenario when Section 33, the notwithstanding clause, weaponizes the Charter against itself.

This course contains 1 hour of EDI Professionalism content accredited by the Law Society of Ontario. This course may also be eligible towards CPD requirements for lawyers in other Canadian provinces or in other jurisdictions. This course is also an accredited and/or eligible learning activity for Chartered Professional Accountants (CPA)and Chartered Financial Analysts (CFA).

To learn more about the course

Register Now
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