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Roundtable Discussions

February 20, 2019
11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Hilton Garden Inn & Homewood Suites Ottawa Downtown
361 Queen Street
Ottawa, ON
MPI Ottawa Chapter

The “Round Tables” are back! One of the most popular MPI Ottawa educational sessions are returning in February 2019! The “Round Table” format has proven to be a successful forum for small-group dialogue on key industry topics.

Plan to join your colleagues on Wednesday February 20th at the new Hilton Garden Inn & Homewood Suites Ottawa Downtown for “Engaging Conversations: Round Tables”. Each table will feature one topic and be set for 8-10 people, with discussion led by an industry specialist over lunch. Participants will have an opportunity to participate in two round table discussions/two topics.

Don’t miss this opportunity for education and collaboration on important topics you experience in your day to day work, networking, and touring this new property.

Hilton Garden Inn & Homewood Suites Ottawa Downtown
361 Queen Street, Ottawa Ontario K1R 0C7

Wednesday, February 20th, 2019
11:00 – 11:30 AM: Registration and Networking
11:30 AM:  Welcoming remarks and acknowledgements
11:45 – 12:30 PM:  Lunch with Roundtable topic #1
12:30 -1:15 PM: Dessert with Roundtable topic #2
1:15-1:30 PM: Closing remarks
1:30 – 2:00 PM: Tour of this new property

Cost Early-Bird (until February 8, 2019) Regular (as of February 9, 2019)
Members $52.00 $67.00
Non-Members $67.00 $52.00
Students $37.00 $86.50


N.B. Sign-up for topics will be onsite

Creating RFPs that Work for You

The Request for Proposal (RFP) process can be the start of a wonderful partnership between your suppliers and you. Learn the secrets to successful RFPs from three sides of the event industry (Planner, DMO, and Supply Industry).

Topic Outcome:

  • What to include in your RFP and why?
  • How to get your RFP to work for you?
  • What are the challenges in preparing or issuing your RFP?


Mireille Faucon – Principal Planner and Owner, Events Par Excellence Inc.

For 15 years, Mireille has brought together topnotch people from a variety of cities, interests and careers to present well-coordinated and well-attended professional meetings, conferences and events. Prior to launching Events Par Excellence, Mireille organized countless events of all sizes and in both official languages through project management and event management roles with the University of Ottawa.

Her interest in meeting and conference planning for small, medium and large sized non-profit, corporate, and charitable organizations stems from her love of the convention industry and in meeting and establishing relationships with those who have a need for the delivery of conferences and events of every size.

Mireille is known as a planning “miracle worker”! She speaks and writes English and French fluently, and combined with her connections and contacts across Canada, her ability to plan a meeting, conference or event is a national specialty! Each project she takes on is approached with an unmatched level of professional enthusiasm.

Nancy Bradshaw, CMP – Business Development Manager – Ottawa, Tourism Saskatoon

Enthusiastic, energetic business development manager with a passion for exemplary customer satisfaction. Bringing the sole and experience of an event planner to my role – sharing her love and knowledge of all that Saskatoon has to offer. Experienced independent planner taking care of the details, so you don't have to. Detail oriented program manager working with national and international NPOs providing accurate project reporting and accounting services.

Allison Collins – Regional Account Director, Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre & Westin Wall Centre Vancouver Airport

A dedicated and passionate sales professional with over 17 years’ experience in hotel sales. Allison's experience is working with the Canadian and international association markets. In her years of experience, she has worked with brands such as IHG, Delta, Starwood and Marriott.  Allison currently works remotely out of Ottawa in a regional role representing the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre and Westin Wall Centre Vancouver Airport. Allison prides herself in developing new business and is recognized for the ability to create trust and build lasting relationships.

Room Block Management

Managing room blocks and how to prevent poaching, last-minute cancellations, ensuring that registered delegates get access to rooms, etc. That is one area of concerns that all planners must contend with in various ways. So, how do we all manage it? Come share your ideas and/or best practices so we can all benefit and learn from each other.

Topic Outcome:

Ideas/best practices to implement within your organization to help you manage your room blocks more efficiently.


Carole Brault, CMP – Manager, Events, Federation of Canadian Municipalities

Carole Brault is the Manager, Events for the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. She’s been in the meeting’s industry for over 25 years and has been involved with MPI and PCMA both as a committee and/or Board member throughout the years. Her and her team manages several events per year with their annual conference and trade show being one of the largest in Canada, attracting over 2500 delegates and companions.

Collaborative AV: Win-Win Partnerships!

So, what is the best way to collaborate with your AV partner? Let’s talk about it from an AV service provider’s perspective! Learn what the wish list is to create strong partnerships for successful results.

Topic Outcome:

An interactive discussion on what an AV service provider requires to deliver a success event.  Starting from the RFP process to the event, participants will take away valuable insight on the value of true partnerships with their AV supplier and what it takes for your AV team to deliver extraordinary results.


Alice Parnis – General Manager Ottawa, AV- CANADA

Alice believes in creating experiences through her work. Her experience in events over 21 years has found her wearing multiple hats as a designer, planner, producer, manager and creative director. She is an industry multi-award winner. Her passions are ballroom/Latin dancing, gardening and volunteering in the industry!

Food & Beverage: How to Stay Trendy (“Sexy”) in the Industry

The hospitality industry (restaurants or food operations) is growing at a pace that many cannot keep up with. What do we need to do to stay in the game and understand how we can grow as an individual and for our industry?

Topic Outcome:

Having the tools to define, in each specific segment, your potential opportunity and create an eye opener on what needs to be done.

Moderator Bio:

Patrick Turcot – Executive Chef, Shaw Centre

Patrick Turcot is a Quebec-born Executive Chef bringing with him experience from a distinguished career at numerous prestigious hotels across North America. He found his passion for food and cooking when he was teenager, perusing his dream by graduating from the Institute of Tourism and Hospitality of Quebec. Chef Turcot started his career off joining the kitchen brigade at Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, returning to work at the legendary Chateau Frontenac and share his culinary experience with students at Cégep Limoilou in Quebec City. After stints as the Executive Chef at the Fairmont Hotel Macdonald in Edmonton and Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, both in Alberta, Chef Turcot was appointed as Executive Chef at the Fairmont Scottsdale in Arizona, where he found new sources of inspiration in the desert and embraced the challenge of working with diverse regional flavours and products. His experiences there laid the foundation for great success as the Head Chef at the Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu in La Malbaie, Quebec, where he also became a passionate ambassador for culinary tourism throughout the Charlevoix Region. Throughout his career, Chef Turcot has received numerous awards and accolades and has participated in a variety of television productions.

In addition to working closely with local producers, Chef Turcot’s cuisine is also inspired by classical French techniques and principles, infused with current influences often found through travel.

Event Technology Tools: Tips, Apps and Navigating Potential Pitfalls

This roundtable discussion will focus on a variety of technology tools that can streamline your event, engage attendees and simplify your workflow. It will also address pitfalls event organizers encounter with technology and data structure.

Topic Outcome:

The outcome of this discussion will provide participants with actionable concepts related to technology for their events.


David Dugas – Vice President, D. E. Systems

David is vice president and principal proprietor of D. E. Systems, working first in Ottawa’s Computer Rental Division in the 1990s, then since 2000, opening and managing D. E. Systems Toronto Operations.  In 2010, David continued to oversee Toronto’s operations as well as managing D. E. Systems Software Services Division which has overhauled myConferenceSuite, D. E.’s on-event management system.  David has overseen execution of some of D. E. Systems largest projects including serving as senior project manager of Informatics Services for the G8/G20 summit in 2010 in Toronto and Hunstville, ON.  The largest IT project in company history, D. E. systems was charged with managing deployment of over 1000 computers and peripherals to 5 sites in the GTA and Huntsville. David holds a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and Economics from Carleton University.

Engaging Event Design with Your Budget in Mind

Often event design is a choice we make without even realizing we have made it. If you design with the end goal in mind you can create a dynamic event that will have impact and still be able to provide the objective takeaways. Specifically focusing on the current trends in room designs and layouts. How collaborating between various suppliers can enhance your ultimate event outcome.

Topic Outcome:

Learn what is possible on your budget, utilizing existing pieces from your venue and being strategic and creative with your use of furniture and decor.


Jennifer McAndrew, MBA, CED, Event Director, Mastermind Event Rentals

Jennifer is currently the Event Director and co-founder of Mastermind Event Rentals and has been recognized by the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce and Ottawa Business Journal as one of Ottawa’s 40 Under 40 (2015) as well as receiving the Tsimpa Award recognizing her contributions to the Ottawa Wedding & Event community. Prior to founding Mastermind Events in 2007 she was an event coordinator specializing in large scale non-profit events from student conferences to large outdoor productions. She is the immediate past president of the MPI Ottawa Chapter and has completed her Event Designer Certification (CED) through the Event Design Institute and is working to complete her Digital Event Strategist (DES) designation.

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