2019 Ontario Heritage Conference

May 30-June 1, 2019 ~ Bluewater/Goderich, ON  

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Programming Highlights

Friday, May 31 at  7:00 pm

Knights of Columbus Hall

Gala Dinner

Anthony Wilson-Smith

President and CEO

Historica Canada


Anthony has been in his present position since joining the organization in 2012. Prior to that, he had a long career in journalism, serving as a national and foreign correspondent and then Editor-in-Chief of Macleans Magazine.  After leaving journalism, he held senior executive roles at a major federal Crown Corporation and one of Canada’s largest financial institutions  A Montreal native, Anthony has worked in more than 35 countries abroad as well as all of Canada’s provinces and territories, and appeared as a political and social commentator on national and international media on networks including CBC, CTV, Global Television, Radio-Canada, Great Britain’s BBC and ITV, and C-SPAN and ABC television news in the United States, along with the Moscow News in Russia. He has been honored for his work in the mental health sector and for encouraging diversity, and in 2018 was awarded The Sovereign’s Medal For Community Service.

Historica Canada offers programs you can use to explore, learn, and reflect on our history and what it means to be Canadian. Last year its programs reached more than 24 million Canadians, making it the largest national organization of its kind. Historica Canada's best-known offerings include the Heritage Minutes, a collection of more than 90 vignettes recounting stories of important people and events, and The Canadian Encyclopedia, an online resource with more than 20,000 authored, accurate and continuously updated articles.

Friday, May 31 Opening Keynote

We are very fortunate that Kelly will be one of our keynote speakers, presenting us with his analysis of the economic impact of heritage tourism. 

Hill Strategies Research is widely respected across Canada and internationally as a leading authority on arts and culture research, with nearly 20 years of research experience in this area. Founder & President, Kelly Hill has an unparalleled knowledge of the Canadian arts sector and arts-related statistics. Since founding Hill Strategies in 2002, Kelly has prepared nearly 400 reports and presentations on the arts and culture, involving quantitative and qualitative arts research.  

Friday, May 31 - 1:45 pm

Agriculture Photographic Exploration Bonnie Sitter

Bonnie will take us on a visual journey of the province’s various agricultural commodities. The significant recent evolution in farming methods will be illustrated with particular attention paid to changes brought about by advances in technology.  Production methods and interesting "did you know" facts will be included.

Bonnie Sitter has co-authored 2 coffee table books, 'The Beauty and Bounty of Huron County' (2013) and 'Agriculture Today: A Portrait of Family Farms in Ontario' (2017).
Her articles and photographs are regularly published in The Rural Voice and often involve history with an agricultural flavour.
Stayed tuned for 'Onion Skins and Peach Fuzz: Memories of Ontario Farmerettes', book release anticipated later this year.

Friday, May 31 - 3:30pm Dave Gillians

The Bayfield River Flats Campaign

Dave Gillians is a graduate from Mt. Allison University and Wilfrid Laurier University. He is retired from TDCanada Trust.

Dave was one of the founders of the Bayfield River Valley Trail Association, is a past President of the Bayfield Historical Society and was the fundraising chair of the Bayfield River Flats acquisition team. 



This conference is an initiative by Community Heritage Ontario to provide information, education, points of view and opinions to maintain and enhance the competence of and inspire individuals working in the heritage field, whether professionals or volunteers.  The presentations and sessions during this conference do not, however, represent or embody any official positions of or statements by Community Heritage Ontario, or its directors and officers, except where this is specifically indicated.  The participants at this conference acknowledge and agree that Community Heritage Ontario does not accept any responsibility or liability for the content of any verbal or written presentations by third parties.  In addition, the presentations and sessions at this conference do not attempt to set forth definitive methods or standards or provide legal advice.  Any materials provided are intended to be used thoughtfully by participants, as nothing presented at this conference relieves participants of their responsibility to consider the content in the light of their own judgment and experience.