Special Guests:

Date & Time to be Announced

Canada's Abundant Forest Resource

Hear from Canada's Minister of Natural Resources as he discusses the importance of Canada's forests in combating climate change, providing habitat for species at risk as well as the importance of the resource in supporting stable economies for communities and Indigenous peoples across Canada. Hear perspectives on the importance of utilizing the resource in a global economic environment. Also, hear from Forest Products Association of Canada's CEO, who will provide an industry perspective on Canadian forests and global initiatives. 




The Honourable Jim Carr, Canada's Minister of Natural Resources


Derek Nighbor, CEO, Forest Products Association of Canada


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

1:30 - 5:00 PM
Session: Opening Remarks

Delegates will be welcomed to the conference and to the Province of Ontario.

Session: SFI - Dedicated to the Future of our Forests and Quality of Life

Learn about SFI's role as a solutions-oriented sustainability organization. See how we collaborate on forest-based conservation and community initiatives that demonstrate and enhance our shared quality of life. And learn how SFI also provides supply chain assurances for brandowners and consumers around the world. Hear how our broader network of conservation, community, Indigenous peoples, government, business and other partners is helping us live up to the idea of "Forests. A way of life." 


Kathy Abusow, President and CEO, SFI Inc.

Session: Driving Innovation in Canadian Forestry

Hear from Canada's senior government official on forestry. Markets, science, and sustainable forestry are all within the mandate of the Canadian Forest Service. Canadian forests face the challenges of climate change, human development but also offer opportunities in the bio-economy, sequestering carbon and providing habitat for wildlife species. Hear how the Canadian Forest Service is addressing these key issues.




Glenn Mason, Assistant Deputy Minister, Canadian Forest Service, Natural Resources Canada

Session: Progressive Aboriginal Relations - From Forest Management to Housing

Indigenous people have an important role in North American forestry. Indigenous and company leaders will discuss the business case for advancing indigenous partnerships and recent successes. Topics will include youth engagement, systematic approaches to partnerships and a perspective on future challenges.


Session Leader:

Mark Rodgers, President and CEO, Habitat for Humanity Canada and SFI Board Chairman



JP Gladu, President and CEO, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business


Jeff Zweig, President and CEO, Timberwest

Session: Boreal Watersheds and Wildlife Conservation

Forty percent of North American ducks visit the boreal forest each year to raise their young. The boreal forest also filters water, stores carbon and provides an abundance of jobs in rural communities. Hear how Ducks Unlimited Canada has partnered with SFI to improve wetland protection not only in the boreal but across the U.S. and Canada, and how a national wetland guide and accompanying wetland crossings guidelines are helping conserve both wildlife and livelihoods.



Karla Guyn, CEO, Ducks Unlimited Canada 

Session: Connecting Youth to Forests

Fostering an appreciation and understanding of the natural world is critical to healthy mental and physical development in youth. But today's American and Canadian kids spend more time indoors than previous generations. That's why a key component of SFI's community engagement is educating youth, to ensure they can be effective future leaders and have a strong understanding of the value of responsibly managed forests. Hear how SFI's key partners are helping us inspire youth and move them from "screen time to tree time.




Rafael Salgado, Executive Director, Cal-Wood Education Center Colorado and Co-Chair of Project Learning Tree's Education Operating Committee 


Rob Keen, CEO, Forests Ontario

5:00 - 7:00 PM
President's Reception


Thursday, September 28, 2017

7:00 - 8:45 AM
3rd Annual Fun Run/Walk and other morning activities
7:30 - 9:00 AM
Continental Breakfast
9:00 - 12:00 PM
SFI and Canadian Institute of Forestry (CIF) Joint General Session(s)
Session: Algonquin Nation Welcome and First Nations Drum Group

Be part of an official welcome from the Algonquin Nation, on whose traditional territory we are gathering for the conference.  This welcome also acknowledges the Algonquin Nation as the past, present and future caretakers of this land. Learn about the significance of the forest as the place the Algonquin people go to get the things they need to live, the importance of the Algonquin River and Algonquin canoe, as well as the significance of different aspects of the welcoming and drumming ceremony.



Elder Claudette Commanda, Algonquin Elder, Kitigan Zibi

Session: Managing Forested Landscapes for Species at Risk

SFI Program Participants across North America are leading proactive solutions for at-risk forest species. Hear how these organizations are developing partnerships to enhance conservation of species at risk – from innovative pilot projects with SFI Program Participants to working with government agencies in shaping policies related to endangered species.




Laura Farquharson, Director General, Environment Canada  


Dave Tenny, President and CEO, National Alliance for Forest Owners 

Session: Provincial Perspectives on Sustainable Forest Management and the Future of the Forest Sector

In Canada, the provinces have responsibility for the majority of forest lands. Hear from government leaders from New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia, as they share their insights on the critical role sustainable forest management and the forest sector plays in providing supply chain assurances, addressing conservation issues including climate change and species at risk, as well as sustaining rural and Indigenous communities. Also learn about market acceptance opportunities, as well as new markets and innovations in the sector. Each speaker will offer their perspectives on past successes and future opportunities.


Session Leader:

Kevin Edgson, President and CEO, EACOM Timber Corporation




Ronald Brizard, Associate Deputy Minister - Forestry, Ministry of Forests, Wildlife and Parks, Government of Quebec


Kathleen McFadden, Assistant Deputy Minister at Ministry of Natural Resources, Ontario


Thomas MacFarlane, Assistant Deputy Minister, Renewable Resources and Operations, Energy and Resource Development, New Brunswick



12:00 - 1:30 PM
Annual Awards Luncheon
1:45 - 3:15 PM
General Session
Session: Global Trends in Supply Chain Management

Gain insights into key opportunities to address conservation through markets and sustainability policies. Hear how the Sustainable Biomass Program is managing conservation challenges and seeking new collaborative opportunities.



Julia Marton-Lefèvre, Chair, Advisory Board, Sustainable Biomass Program

Session: Collaborating for Conservation of Managed Forested Landscapes

Hear from leaders in forest conservation and research, who will share current developments in conservation science, and offer perspectives on the critical role of working forests in attaining conservation outcomes. Learn about research elevating conservation through the SFI Conservation and Community Partnerships Grant Program, as well as ways in which practical conservation approaches, in partnership with working lands, can achieve meaningful scale in North American forests. 




Fiona Schmiegelow, Professor and Director, Northern Environmental and Conservation Sciences Program, University of Alberta


Joel Bonin, Director, Nature Conservancy of Canada


Tom Duffus, Vice President, Midwest Region and Northeast Representative, Conservation Acquisition, 
The Conservation Fund


Scott Hall, Senior Scientist, Bird Conservation, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation  

3:30 - 5:30 PM
SIC Regional Breakouts 

(All others free time)



6:00 - 10:00 PM
SFI Reception and Dinner


Friday, September 29, 2017

7:30 - 9:00 AM
Flapjacks and Coffee

Truly Canadian Pancake Breakfast

"Waiter, waiter, will the pancakes be long?"
"No sir, round."

9:00 - 12:00 PM
Session: The SFI Fiber Sourcing Story

The SFI Fiber Sourcing Standard is relevant throughout the forest products supply chain - from family forest owners to brandowners. Learn about opportunities to encourage the spread of responsible forest management and hear how these organizations are procuring wood and managing supply chains responsibly.



Lynn Wilson, Director, Natural Resources, Louisiana-Pacific


Laura Thompson, Director of Technical Marketing and Sustainable Development, Sappi North America


George D'Urso, Director, Sustainability, WestRock


Scott Jones, CEO, Forest Landowners Association

Session: Global Policies and Markets

Get the latest update on global geospatial tools applied to the forest sector and the implications for sustainable forest management in North America. Hear insights on elevating sustainable forest management on the global agenda and implications in North America.




Rod Taylor, Global Director, Forests Program, World Resources Institute


Paola Deda, Section Chief, Joint Forestry and Timber Section, UNECE FAO

Session: Green Building and Corporate Social Responsibility

Green building is a key market driver to ensure wood and paper products come from responsibly managed forests, which provide so many benefits including cleaning our air and water, supporting biodiversity, and providing employment. Learn how linking green buildings to these benefits is an important way to show how forest products support corporate social responsibility. 



Susan Jones, FAIA LEED AP, Principal, atelierjones llc

12:00 - 1:00 PM
Closing Luncheon
12:30 - 6:00 PM
Optional Field Tour: Kenauk Nature, Montebello, QC