Over the past two years coloured by the pandemic, we’ve witnessed a marvel of collective human adaptation, and a new workplace has emerged — highly distributed, changed by technology, challenged by skill shortages, and struggling with supply chain issues. As we move into economic recovery, resilient Manitoba leaders are forging the path forward.

On Friday, May 6, join us for our virtual 2022 Manitoba Economic Summit and 91st annual general meeting as we gather business, chamber, and community leaders for important shared discussions of ongoing challenges and opportunities, government actions, and recovery recommendations.

8:30AM – Opening Remarks

Reimagining Growth

A Fireside Chat with

Isabelle Hudon,

President & CEO

8:40 AM


Conversation Focus

At the crossroads of many paths to recovery, our entrepreneurs need to reinvent the way they do things in order to be able to move from resilience to growth. Join us for a conversation with Isabelle Hudon, BDC’s President and CEO, who will discuss how BDC – the bank of Canadian entrepreneurs – works alongside Canadian small and medium-sized businesses to de-risk their projects and pave the way to sustainable, fair and inclusive growth.

Isabelle's Bio

Isabelle Hudon was appointed President and CEO of BDC, the bank for Canadian entrepreneurs, in August 2021.

Ms. Hudon brings a deep business background and a clear vision for an inclusive economy to support growth for Canadian entrepreneurs. She is a champion of diversity, gender equality and the green economy, leading BDC’s 2,500-person team.

From 2017 to 2021, Ms. Hudon was Ambassador of Canada to France and Monaco. She also served as the Personal Representative of the Prime Minister of Canada for La Francophonie. Previously, she was President and CEO of Sun Life Financial Quebec and Senior Vice President of Sun Life Financial Canada.

Ms. Hudon has also held seats on numerous boards of directors, including those of Hydro-Québec, Groupe Marcelle, Holt Renfrew and the Canada Council for the Arts. She is the co-founder of The A Effect and co-chair of the Ordre de Montréal’s Council.

In 2021, Ms. Hudon received the insignia of the Commander of the Legion of Honour from the French government. She has also been honoured with the Medal of the National Assembly of Québec for her commitment to the cause of women’s ambition and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for her contribution to culture in Canada.

9:30 AM – Panel 1 

Manitoba’s Workforce: Shaping, Recruiting & Retaining Tomorrow’s Talent

Sponsored by:

Panel Focus

We are experiencing a critical labour shortage in Manitoba. Employers are reporting difficulty recruiting and retaining employees with the right mix of skills and talent necessary to grow their businesses. The pandemic has only exacerbated these workforce challenges. As we emerge from the pandemic, we desperately need short-term, targeted solutions to address the problems of jobs without people and people without jobs. Without a focus and investment in addressing these challenges, we cannot effectively support Manitoba businesses as they chart their paths towards economic recovery. Join us for a conversation with leading experts in post-secondary education, immigration, human resources, and manufacturing & exporting on shaping, recruiting, and retaining tomorrow’s talent in Manitoba.

Moderated by: Andrea Aiello, Director, Workforce Development, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters Manitoba

10:30 AM – Panel 2 

Tourism & Hospitality: Restoring Manitoba’s Hardest-Hit Sectors

Sponsored by:

Moderated by Colin Ferguson, President & CEO of Travel Manitoba




Panel Focus

The crushing blow of capacity restrictions, compounded by critical COVID-19 prevention protocols that lead to prolonged non-essential lock-downs, may have come to end, but the economic after-effects are lingering. From restaurants and independent retail to in-person entertainment, health & fitness, personal services, and travel & tourism businesses, the pandemic’s most deeply-affected sectors are striving to make up for lost time and two years of depressed revenues. Join moderator Colin Ferguson, President & CEO of Travel Manitoba, in conversation with Scott Jocelyn, President & CEO, Manitoba Hotel Association; Sachit Mehra, co-owner and GM, East India Company; and Sara Stasiuk, CEO, Forks North Portage Partnership, as they explore the path forward for the pandemic’s hardest hit.  

11:30 AM – Panel 3

Digital Adaptation: Boosting Your Business with Transformative Technology

Sponsored by:

Moderated by: Nicole Harris, Maverick Media Solutions

Panel Focus

The Digital Manitoba Initiative has uncovered gaps in digital technology capacity cutting across most sectors in Manitoba’s business community. Tech disruption stories are unique, but with common threads, including how to get around outdated technology, concerns about the cloud and implementing new processes, and meeting increased customer expectations for online services. Technology is ever-evolving and businesses need to arm themselves with the tools and expertise to build a stronger digital foundation from which to preserve operations, boost efficiency, and expand. Join our panel of experts, including leaders in digital process and policy, cybersecurity, and tech assessment for information and strategies you can use to leverage the digital economy.

12:30 PM – Keynote Address from

Stephen Tapp, Chief Economist

Stephen's Bio

Stephen Tapp is the Chief Economist at the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. In this role, he is a key member of the Chamber’s executive leadership team, responsible for the operations of the new Business Data Lab as well as all economic analysis and research. His current focus is on developing the Chamber’s data and analytics capabilities to provide real-time, forward-looking insights for Canadian businesses of all sizes, in all sectors and regions of the country.

Stephen brings 20 years of diverse experiences at many of Canada’s top economic organizations including at: Export Development Canada as the Deputy Chief Economist, the Bank of Canada, Parliamentary Budget Office, Finance Canada, two think tanks as well as academia.

He is a recognized thought-leader, frequent commentator, and sought-out spokesperson on economic issues in Canada. Stephen’s research was awarded the Purvis prize for Canadian economic policy and has been published in academic journals, such as the Canadian Journal of Economics and Canadian Public Policy. He has a Ph.D. and M.A. in Economics from Queen’s University and an Honors B.A from Western. During his undergrad, he studied in the Netherlands and was the owner-operator of a student painting company.

1:30 PM – Fireside Chat with

The Honourable Daniel Vandal

Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister Responsible for Prairies Economic Development Canada, and Minister Responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Minister Vandal's Bio

The Honourable Daniel Vandal was first elected as Member of Parliament for Saint Boniface — Saint Vital in 2015 and re-elected in 2019 and 2021. In  2018, he was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indigenous Services and on November 20, 2019, he was named Minister of Northern Affairs. Following the last election, the Prime Minister entrusted Minister Vandal with the additional responsibilities as Minister Responsible for Prairies Economic Development Agency Canada and Minister Responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency.


Prior to his political career, Minister Vandal was a youth outreach worker with Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Centre. He then went on to serve five terms as Winnipeg City Councillor for St. Boniface. A former Deputy Mayor, he was also Chair of the Protection, Property and Public Works committees at City Hall. He is especially proud of his role in the development of Winnipeg’s Aboriginal Youth Strategy, the first of its kind in Canada.


As Minister of Northern Affairs, he has worked with provincial, territorial, and Indigenous partners in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring people were healthy and safe and that businesses and communities had the necessary resources to get through this challenging period.

2:00 PM – 91st Annual General Meeting

3:00 PM – Policy Resolution Debates

4:00 PM – Closing Remarks