Preparing for the Unexpected: How to Manage Through Complexity and Change

Spaceflight is an unforgiving business, with industry success riding on every launch and event. Being a commander of a spaceship means facing the highest of stakes — human lives, irreplaceable and expensive equipment, and worldwide scrutiny. Having commanded the International Space Station for months off planet, Colonel Chris Hadfield is experienced in managing people, complexity, and change under extreme circumstances. Surrounded by life-threatening risk, his daily routine was to prepare for and solve worse-case scenarios, from both a team and leadership perspective. Hadfield draws from his experiences and lessons learned during his 21 years in the astronaut corps to share the best strategies and tactics to help individuals, teams, and leaders prepare for and meet the challenges of our rapidly changing world. Key topics include managing stress, leading under pressure, encouraging collaboration amongst diverse teams, redefining norms, and more. Using multiple examples from his tremendous career, he illuminates the necessity for both preparation and reaction to complex change.

Chris Hadfield - Renowned Canadian Astronaut and Spaceship Commander!

Formerly NASA’s director of operations, Hadfield is a heavily decorated astronaut, engineer, and military fighter/test pilot whose many awards include the Order of Canada, the Meritorious Service Cross, and the NASA Exceptional Service Medal. He was named the Top Test Pilot in both the US Air Force and the US Navy, and was inducted into Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame.

ISO 20022: what are data-rich payments and how will they help businesses

ISO 20022 is an open global standard for the interchange of financial information. It’s especially valuable for cross-border payments because it creates a common language for financial institutions world-wide. Another big benefit is its ability to facilitate straight-through processing and reconciliation of payments. Join Payments Canada’s Robyn King for a deep dive into data-rich payments, what they are and how they will help businesses boost efficiency and innovate services.

Robyn King is the Director for Industry Relations at Payments Canada

Robyn King is the Director for Industry Relations at Payments Canada, where she oversees a portfolio of relationships with member financial institutions, broader stakeholder groups and industry governance. She has more than 15 years of experience in transactional banking, card payments and payments modernization in both the Southern African and Canadian markets.
Prior to joining Payments Canada, Robyn was on the modernization team at CIBC and worked at South Africa’s FirstRand Bank, holding roles in branch banking, innovation, payments, and merchant acquiring.
Robyn graduated with a B.Sc. from the University of Johannesburg and an MBA from the Henley Business School. Robyn became a Certified Treasury Professional in 2020 and is due to complete a certification in strategy with Harvard Business School this year. 

Lost and Confused: How to survive without third-party data

You might have seen the commercials. Shoppers are opting not to let advertisers digitally track their online movements anymore. The public’s outcry for digital privacy has forced the hands of technology companies to create features that limit the ability of big advertising companies like Google and Facebook to track shoppers online. While this is a major win for privacy advocates, these new features now are wreaking havoc on the dealer’s ability to attract shoppers to their websites and inventory. In fact, some early reports have shown that 94% of shoppers have opted out of allowing apps to track them on iOS devices. Ian Cruickshank, CEO of Leadbox, explains how Dealers must adapt to avoid paying the high price of privacy.

Ian Cruickshank - President & CEO of Leadbox

Ian Cruickshank, Adjunct Professor at the University of British Columbia. Ian is regularly called on to present and lecture on various Information Technology, Digital Marketing, and Career Development concepts. With an undergraduate degree in Marketing and HR from Bishop’s University and later completing a Masters in Business Administration and IT Management at UBC in 2010, Ian is a perpetual student of management and leadership. The early part of his career was with two of Canada’s largest media companies, Rogers and PostMedia, in sales and sales leadership roles. Since then, Ian has spent his time consulting on digital disruption and as the head of sales and marketing for a social media marketing firm and, more recently, for an Advertising Technology company. As the President & CEO of Leadbox, he leads a passionate group of automotive marketing and technology professionals providing products and services to dealerships across Canada. Above all, Ian loves to be outside with his wife and his young family in Port Moody, BC.

Cybersecurity: Online Identity and Data Protection

The weakest link in the cybersecurity chain is still the employees. Social engineering and human error are responsible for the majority of data breaches -> 92% of malware is still downloaded to a company’s system via email sent to an employee. Though there are terrific software solutions that help to mitigate these risks, the ultimate solution is to train your employees. Help them better understand what information they are giving away and how it can be used against them.
In this session find out how your data is gathered and used in our evolving online world. Cat helps individuals understand how their behaviours online affects both the company’s data security and their reputation. Leave with tangible actions you can take to improve privacy and safety of your online accounts. Keep hackers at bay, secure your private accounts, and take ownership of your most valuable asset, your data.

Cat Coode - Renowned Data + Privacy Strategist

Cat Coode is on a mission to help protect your data. Backed by two decades of experience in mobile development and software architecture (BlackBerry), as well as a certification in data privacy law, Cat helps individuals and corporations better understand cybersecurity and data privacy.

She specializes in global privacy regulation compliance and delivering privacy education seminars. She is a member of the Canadian Standards Council for GDPR. She has worked with tech start-ups through to large organizations in a breadth of industries including healthcare, education, and social media.

Named one of Canada’s Top 20 Women in Cybersecurity 2021, Cat leverages her aptitude for teaching and her engineering background, in both her speaking and consulting engagements, to break down technical concepts in ways everyone can understand. Putting privacy at the foundation of everything you do

Ontario Market M&A Trends & Insights

Ontario Market M&A Trends & Insights

Automotive Dealers are delivering record profitability, but there has never been a time of greater uncertainty for retailers with the onset of electrification and changing franchise models.  DSMA, a leading Automotive Mergers & Acquisitions firm, invites you to a 60-minute discussion on the current trends effecting dealership valuations and buy/sell activity in Ontario.  The value of your business will have changed in the last 6 to 12 months, so even if you aren’t interested in buying or selling, you need to understand the value of your greatest asset and what’s going to affect its value (positively or negatively) in the coming months and years.

Discussion points will include:

  • Average Goodwill Multiples by Brand
  • Average Dealership Values
  • Most Transacted Brands
  • Transaction Timelines & Reasons for Selling
  • Direction of Travel for Future Goodwill Values.

Attendees will return to their businesses with an accurate understanding of the current M&A trends and how they relate to their business.

John Chisholm, Vice President of Sales, Canada at DSMA

John is the previous owner of Rose City Ford. John sat on many committees on behalf of dealers including past chairman of the Ford Dealer Advertising association, past president of the Ontario Automobile Dealers Association and the Board of directors of CADA.  John’s 38 years of dealer and retail experience and knowledge are assets in any Buy/Sell transaction. John understands how dealers work and think and has the highest regard for their investments. He is intimately aware of the emotions and financial logistics involved in succession and growth opportunities, having undergone the buy/sell process several times in his career.

Celina Caesar-Chavannes: Renowned Business consultant, coach, international speaker & best-selling author.

Celina currently serves as the Sr. Advisor of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion Initiatives and Adjunct Lecturer at Queen’s University. Her national bestselling book, Can You Hear Me Now? was released in February 2021, and published by Penguin Random House Canada.


Celina was the former Member of Parliament for Whitby, Parliamentary Secretary to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Parliamentary Secretary for International Development. During her term as a Member of Parliament, Celina was awarded several distinctions including a feature in the April 2018 edition of O (Oprah Winfrey) Magazine entitled, “What would you stand up for and named Chatelaine Magazine’s Woman of the Year (2019). She has a Bachelor of Science, an MBA in Healthcare Management and an Executive MBA from the Rotman School of Management.

How to Succeed in the Evolving Innovation Economy

Janet Bannister - Managing Partner at Real Ventures

Janet is the Managing Partner at Real Ventures, Canada’s preeminent earlystage venture capital firm. Real funds and supports the development of Canadian entrepreneurs who are building the next generation of globally leading tech companies. Janet has led investments in over a dozen companies and works actively with companies in healthcare, advanced manufacturing, ecommerce, fintech, and AI. As Managing Partner, Janet also sets the strategy for the firm, leads investor relationships, and oversees all firm operations.

In addition, Janet is very active in the Canadian tech ecosystem; she is the Co- Chair of C100 and on the Boards of Communitech in Waterloo and Vector Institute in Toronto. She is also an active advisor at OneEleven, Creative Destruction Lab, and the Research Board of the University Health Network.

Janet has won numerous awards and recognition including Venture Capital Journal’s 2021 “Women of Influence in Private Markets”, Pitchbooks’ 2021

“Female Founders & Investors to Know”, and American Bankers’ 2019 “Most

Influential Women in Payments”.

In 2004, Janet launched and grew it to become one of the most visited websites in Canada. Subsequently, she led the Kijiji Global business, launching the website in new countries and accelerating growth in North America, Europe, and Asia.

Janet also spent four years at eBay in Silicon Valley where she helped transform eBay from a Collectibles to a mainstream marketplace. She started her career as a Brand Manager at Procter & Gamble and then joined McKinsey & Co. where she was an Engagement Manager. She also founded and built a successful consulting business and was CEO at a venture-backed start-up prior to joining Real Ventures.

The Future of Automotive Retail

There is no one size fits all solution for the rapid changes our industry is going through. Make sure you have the most up to date information with our panel of industry experts. This discussion will dive into a long term forecast for the Automotive Retail world, answering your key questions. What consumer trends have the hints of becoming habits? What role will technology play in the innovation and disruption of the consumer buying process? Is there a need for a complete rethink of the current process? Find out how the changing needs and wants of the consumer, will impact the future of retail automotive.

Moderator: Todd Phillips

Todd Phillips, Senior Editor, Canadian auto dealer

For more than a decade, Todd Phillips has been the Senior Editor of Canadian auto dealer, the leading media property for Canada’s car dealers, gaining invaluable and in-depth knowledge of Canada’s automotive ecosystem.

An award-winning journalist with more than 30 years experience in newspapers, magazines, television and online media, Todd regularly interviews key players across all parts of Canada’s auto industry, including OEM leaders, prominent dealers and heads of dealer groups across Canada, and suppliers.

He received his Master of Arts in Journalism from Western University in London, Ont. and his Bachelor of Arts High Honours in Political Science from Carleton University in Ottawa, Ont.

Todd is also Vice-President, Creative Strategy at Universus Media Group Inc., a marketing agency, automotive industry publisher and software reseller based in Markham, Ontario.

Universus is a leading developer of automotive content for digital platforms. Their work includes video production, marketing creative, blog and other online writing, enews creation and deployment, and digital signage installations at dealerships across the country. /

Shawn Vording

Shawn has 20+ years of automotive experience. Fourteen of those years are with CARPROOF/CARFAX Canada, with roles in Sales, Business Development, Customer Support and Product Management. Shawn is committed to doing what is right for the industry and his customers, passionate about having fun along the way and proud of the relationships he’s built over the years.

Ryan Robinson

Ryan Robinson is the senior research leader supporting the global automotive practice at Deloitte.  His primary focus is creating engaging and actionable insight to support the firm’s clients in the automotive industry.

Prior to joining Deloitte, Ryan was the Senior Director of Industry Analytics at J.D. Power where he was responsible for leading a group of highly-trained subject matter experts covering a variety of industries including automotive, financial services, insurance, energy and telecom.  Ryan also managed the global automotive forecasting practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Detroit where he advised clients on issues such as risk management, acquisition due diligence, and market entry strategy.  Throughout his 23-year career, he has supported companies across the automotive value chain from manufacturers, suppliers and dealers to private equity firms, financial institutions, and aftermarket service providers.

Ryan has been a frequent speaker at industry conferences and has been quoted as a subject matter expert in major media outlets around the world.

Ryan holds honours degrees in Philosophy, Classical Archaeology and English Literature from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada

Ian MacDonald

Chief Marketing Officer at

 As Chief Marketing Officer at TRADER Corporation, Ian MacDonald oversees consumer and business marketing across all of our brands, from strategy to execution. Ian is an award-winning marketing professional with twenty years of global experience in the marketing industry.

In his first stint with TRADER Corporation, as Director of Consumer Marketing from 2012 to 2016, consumer audience to grew 212% to just under 14 million visits a month, while unaided brand awareness increased from 24% to 59%. Ian rejoined TRADER Corporation in 2019 and has yet again driven to new heights, boosting unprompted brand awareness to 66% in July 2021 and achieving 25.7 million visits in August 2021.

Originally from London, UK, he has driven meaningful growth and thus valuations for brands such as Auto Trader UK, RBS, Direct Line, Chef’s Plate, and many more during his global career. Ian was educated at the University of Southampton and the University of London in his native United Kingdom.


Mathew Growden

Head of the Google Canada Auto Retail Team.

He spent the first 18 years of his life in Wiarton, Ontario, the home of the famous Canadian groundhog prognosticator Wiarton Willie. Prior to Google, Mathew accumulated over 20 years of digital experience at some well known companies including Indigo Books and Music, Freedom Mobile and Hot or Not. Now he spends his time helping dealers better understand digital and collaborates across OEMs, agencies and Google partners to help dealers sell more vehicles with digital tools.


Tony Koubridis
Vice-President, Growth
With over 20 years of experience in automotive sales and marketing, Tony Koubridis is leading the AutoVerify growth engine to expand its impact to dealers across North America.Tony is the recipient of multiple industry awards and has a deep understanding of the current challenges faced by automotive dealers and manufacturers. He has a history of building processes and coaching sales teams to address these challenges in a way that satisfies both businesses and consumers.

Google's Think Dealer

This session will dive into the insights from the Google Canada team on the status of the automotive industry and the consumers updated journey.

Mathew Growden - Head of the Google Canada Auto Retail

Mathew Growden is the Head of the Google Canada Auto Retail Team. He spent the first 18 years of his life in Wiarton, Ontario, the home of the famous Canadian groundhog prognosticator Wiarton Willie. Prior to Google, Mathew accumulated over 20 years of digital experience at some well known companies including Indigo Books and Music, Freedom Mobile and Hot or Not. Now he spends his time helping dealers better understand digital and collaborates across OEMs, agencies and Google partners to help dealers sell more vehicles with digital tools.

Automotive Outlook

Tim will lend his unique perspective and expertise on a range of key issues within the automotive industry from lobbying efforts to the future role of dealer councils. Tim will share insights into the industry’s progress and path forward on a national level. 

Tim Reuss - President & CEO of the Canadian Automobile Dealers Association

Tim A. Reuss is an international director with extensive executive experience in sales, marketing and retail. Tim currently is the President & CEO of the Canadian Automobile Dealers Association ( representing over 3200 franchised new car and truck dealers in Canada, acting as their voice and advocating for them on a national level with government, industry and the public. Before joining CADA, Tim was the Managing Partner of TAR Consulting and a Senior Advisor for McKinsey & Co., focusing on automotive trends (electrification, connected vehicles, shared mobility, autonomous driving) and their impact on the industry. He also provides strategic advice and operational support to automotive dealerships, including brand portfolio analysis, footprint optimization as well as generational transition guidance. He has served as President of the Dilawri Group of Companies. The Dilawri Group is Canada’s largest automotive retail group with 61 franchised dealerships representing 30 automotive brands throughout Quebec, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia. Prior to joining the Dilawri Group, Tim worked for Daimler AG in several countries for 28 years, serving as President & CEO of Mercedes Benz Canada from 2011 to 2015. During that time, he was an outspoken supporter of the Canadian EU Free Trade Agreement (CETA) and the harmonization of standards and regulations. His previous postings with Daimler AG included President & CEO of Mercedes Benz Rome, worldwide Sales Director for the Business Unit Vans and President & CEO of DaimlerChrysler Vans LLC. Tim holds a B.A. degree in Economics from Stanford University.

TikTok x Auto

Get up to speed on TikTok and how to utilize it for your dealership, straight from the source. Jeremy will share case studies and best practices on utilizing one of the most popular entertainment platforms in the world.

Jeremy Reisler - Industry Lead - Automotive and Financial Services

Jeremy Reisler oversees Automotive and Financial Services for TikTok in Canada, focused on helping brands and business leaders discover how TikTok can help ignite growth and exceed business goals. Prior to TikTok, Jeremy spent 3 years at Flipp building business strategies for key decision-makers across the largest retail brands and agencies in North America. With 10 years of experience in digital media and advertising, Jeremy has supported tech platforms and advertising agencies in accelerating their digital adoption, driving forward campaign excellence in Canada.

War for Talent

This panel will dive into the challenges our industry is facing in finding the next generation of skilled workers. We will explore strategies from similar industries & sectors while discussing what we can do immediately to help recruit new team members. 

Moderator: Justin Poy

Justin Poy is an award-winning advertising executive that has been creating dynamic ad campaigns for 30+ years. Specializing in the area of strategic integrated campaigns, Justin has worked with every sector of the automotive industry, healthcare, the charitable sector and consumer packaged goods. 
The Justin Poy Agency is the Agency of Record for the Canadian International AutoShow and they have done work for every automotive association across Canada as well as the China Automotive Dealers Association in Beijing. Justin is a frequent speaker on the subject of marketing and digital media at automotive conferences and is often quoted in marketing and automotive media. 
His Agency is a pioneer in Multicultural Advertising in Canada and he is a juror for the Canadian Marketing Awards. Justin is the recipient of the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals. 

Sarah Rawlinson

VP of Human Resources & Payroll at AutoIQ Network of Dealerships

A professional Human Resources & Payroll leader with over 30 years experience in areas including but not limited to Strategic Human Resources, Organizational Effectiveness, Succession Planning, Executive Talent Acquisition, Leadership Development, Employee Learning and Development, Change and Talent Management, Talent Acquisition and Engagement Strategies.

A people leader , who instills confidence, interest and engagement to achieve results and provides hands-on support where needed while providing high quality customer-service to all internal and external stake-holders. Extensive experience in delivering value through understanding business drivers and aligning strategic HR best practices to support profitability and sustain long term performance while gaining efficiencies in business practices and developing high performing teams.

Dan Deboer

Senior Vice President at AutoIQ Dealership Network


Hands-on People Leader Committed to Customer and Employee Satisfaction

Ambitious and process-driven executive with over 30 years success in the automotive industry. Extensive experience in driving sales, building relationships, improving process, optimizing performance and delivering accountability. A solution-focused and positive change agent who operates with the highest level of integrity, skilled in cultivating cohesive teams and healthy workplace culture. Persuasive and engaging communicator with exceptional listening skills required to influence, mentor, and motivate. Respected people-leader with a sincere passion for consistently exceeding customer satisfaction.

Todd Bourgon

Executive Director of the Trillium Automobile Dealers Association (TADA)



Rocco Rossi

President and CEO Ontario Chamber of Commerce 

Rocco Rossi President and CEO Ontario Chamber of Commerce A successful entrepreneur and business executive, champion fundraiser, and dedicated public servant, Rocco Rossi joined the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) in 2018 as President and CEO. Prior to joining the OCC, Rossi most recently served as President and CEO of Prostate Cancer Canada where he helped to advance the research, advocacy, education and awareness of the most common cancer in men. Mr. Rossi also served as CEO of Heart and Stroke Foundation – one of Canada’s largest non-profit organizations – overseeing consecutive years of record fundraising combining for over $500 million in total and launching many new, life-saving initiatives. Mr. Rossi has held senior positions at the Boston Consulting Group, TORSTAR, Labatt/Interbrew and MGI Software. He is a graduate of McGill and Princeton




ACE MISSION:  Provide you with education, inspiration, and insights to fuel your success and drive your business forward while creating meaningful, and purposeful connections with industry partners who will support your acceleration towards your goals.

  • Think Dealer – insights from the Google Canada team on the status of the automotive industry and the consumers journey

  • Preparing for the Unexpected: How to Manage Through Complexity and Change 

  • Evolving Consumer buying Trends

  • Women Driven Panel – exploring the challenges and opportunities of women in auto

  • The Future of Payments – new buying models based on your consumers wants 

  • Cyber Security: The latest updates and best practices for keeping your dealership safe & secure.

  • The Future of Automotive – panel discussion on what the retail automotive landscape will look like in 5,10 and 15 years

  • EV Safety & Consumer Education

  • The Evolution of the Service Department

  • Ontario Market Trends and Valuation Forecasts