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2014 CAMA E-Brief Partner: June 5, 2014            

2014 CAMA National Conference Cultivated a Positive Culture
Over 250 city administrators and senior municipal staff from across the country attended the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrator’s (CAMA’s) National Conference in Niagara Falls, ON from May 26-28, 2014.  From start to finish, the three days of professional development and networking cultivated a positive culture for municipal administrators. 

In addition, a new CAMA President and Board of Directors was elected, Long Service Awards were presented, eight municipalities won CAMA Awards of Excellence, and a CAO from Saskatchewan was presented with CAMA’s Honourary Member for Life Award.  A summary of the Conference proceedings follows.

May 26
The Conference got underway with the CAMA Golf Tournament, Tours of the Niagara Region, Provincial/Territorial Association Meetings, a Women’s Social, a First-Time Delegate Reception, and an Opening Reception in the CAMA Trade Show.  Congratulations to the winning golf team:  Dave McCleary, StrategyCorp; Gary Dyke, CAO - City of Cambridge, ON; and Bill Mann, Acting CAO - Corporation of the Town of Milton, ON.

May 27
On May 27, keynote speaker, Dr. Linda Duxbury started the day by talking about “Managing a Changing Workforce” and how municipal administrators can change how they manage. Being a Chief Administrative Officer / City Manager can be a lonely job, but not when conference attendees get to hear about the “Best Practices Learned by CAMA Members.”  Owen Tobert, former CAMA President and retired City Manager for Calgary, AB, and Penny J. Ballem, City Manager for Vancouver, BC participated in a session moderated by Simon Farbrother, City Manager for Edmonton, AB and President of the International City/County Management Association (ICMA).  Owen talked about his experience with the recent flood in Calgary and Penny talked about relationships with City Staff and what the City of Vancouver has done to be honoured as one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers for 2014.

The plenary session called “Are You Asking Your Police and Fire Chiefs the Right Questions” was very informative. With rising public safety costs across the country, delegates heard from Leonard Matarese, Director of Research and Project Development with the ICMA Centre for Public Safety Management. This was followed by a panel session called “Public Safety – Trends, Perspectives and Opportunities” featuring the wisdom of Len Garis, Fire Chief, Surrey, BC; and, Doug Nadorozny, CAO, Greater Sudbury, ON.

In addition to the sessions, the CAMA Trade Show was the centre for refreshment breaks all day.  Long Service Awards were presented at noon.  In total, 40 municipal administrators from across Canada were recognized with Long Service Awards, with two Distinguished Service Awards.  For more, click here.

A Young Professionals Reception was also held before delegates headed out for a “Taste of Niagara Showcase” casual night.

May 28
The day started with CAMA’s Annual General Meeting, where the 2014-15 Board of Directors was announced.  Robert Hughes, CAMA Representative for Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island and Chief Administrative Officer, Town of Stratford, PEI became CAMA President.  Two new members were also elected to the Board: Jake Rudolph, Deputy City Manager, City of Abbotsford, BC and Jack Benzaquen, City Manager, City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux, QC.   The 2014-15 CAMA Board of Directors includes:
  • Robert Hughes, President / CAMA Representative for Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island / Chief Administrative Officer, Town of Stratford, PE
  • Don MacLellan, First Vice-President / CAMA Representative for New Brunswick / General Manager – Community Safety Services, City of Moncton, NB
  • Marie-Hélène Lajoie, Second Vice-President / CAMA Director-at-Large / City Manager, Gatineau, QC
  • Jean Savard, Past President / Director of Special Projects in the Office of the Chief Administrative Officer, Quebec, QC
  • Keith Arns, Treasurer / CAMA Representative Newfoundland and Labrador / Chief Administrative Officer, Town of Conception Bay South, NL
  • Jack Benzaquen, CAMA Representative, Quebec / City Manager, City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux, QC
  • Janice Baker, CAMA Representative for Ontario / City Manager and Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) of the City of Mississauga, ON
  • Glen Davies, CAMA Representative for Manitoba. Saskatchewan and Nunavut / City Manager, City of Regina, SK
  • Marc Landry, CAMA Representative Alberta and Northwest Territories / Chief Administrative Officer, Town of Beaumont, AB
  • Jake Rudolph, CAMA Representative British Columbia and Yukon / Deputy City Manager, City of Abbotsford, BC
  • Jeff Renaud, CAMA Director-at-Large / Chief Administrative Officer for the City of Dawson, YT
Following the AGM, delegates got to choose from one of two concurrent sessions. The first, entitled “Lean Six Sigma: The Importance of a Positive Environment”, featuring Chris MacPherson, CAO, Fredericton, NB and Janice Baker City Manager/CAO, Mississauga, ON.  The moderator was Ed Welsh, Lean Six Sigma Black Belt with eZsigma Group.

The second session was called “Creating a Positive Dialogue with Small Communities.”  Delegates heard panelists David Muir, CAO, Riverview, NB and Jim Puffalt, City Manager, North Battleford, SK.  The moderator was CAMA Board member, Jeff Renaud, CAO, Dawson, YK.

Dr. Vince Molinaro, Knightsbridge Human Capital Solutions presented a plenary called “The Leadership Contract.”  Those in attendance heard him discuss his four terms and conditions related to leadership.  He says that leadership is a decision, an obligation, hard work, and a community.  

As Wednesday morning ended, delegates attended the CAMA Conference closing keynote featuring Marnie McBean, a three-time Olympic Gold Medalist and Athlete Mentor for the Canadian Olympic Team.  During her presentation, entitled “Be a Career Champion: Training to Win on the Bad Days Too,” delegates learned more about how Ms. MacBean sets and achieves goals – in sports and in life.

At the noon hour CAMA Awards of Excellence Luncheon, eight Canadian municipalities were presented with awards in the areas of innovation, education and professional development.  Ravenhill Group Inc. is the presenting sponsor for CAMA’s Awards of Excellence.  The following municipalities and projects were recognized, in three categories.  Click here to view the full news releases and the videos.

2014 CAMA Willis Award for Innovation
• City of Wetaskiwin, AB, (Population under 20,000), Main Street Revitalization
• City of Fredericton, NB, (Population between 20,001 and 100,000), Wired for Success
• City of Waterloo, ON, (Population over 100,000), Eco-Drive Initiative

2014 CAMA Environment Award
• Corporation of Delta, BC, (Population between 20,001 and 100,000), Saving Our Industrial Lands
• City of Greater Sudbury, ON, (Population over 100,000), Biosolids Management Program

2014 CAMA Professional Development Award
• District of Squamish, BC, (Population under 20,000), Customer Service Program:  Delivering Outstanding Service
• Corporation of the County of Prince Edward, ON, (Population between 20,001 and 100,000), Career Development Program
• City of Richmond, BC, (Population over 100,000), Corporate Programs Management Group (CPMG)

In the afternoon, delegates got to choose from a “Public Safety Workshop” with Leonard Matarese or one of three study tours presented by the City of Niagara Falls, ON:  Revisiting the Past – Reshaping the Future; Maintaining Excellence at the Niagara Parks Commission; and, The Entertainment Experience at Niagara Parks. 

The day included refreshment breaks in the CAMA Trade Show location, and ended with the CAMA President’s Reception and Dinner, featuring Canada’s original Duelling Pianos.  During the dinner, Jim Toye, CAO for Prince Albert, SK was presented with CAMA’s Honorary Member for Life Award.  (Click here to learn more about Mr. Toye’s career).  President Savard was also pleased to present Hilda Price, SAO for Hamlet of Rankin Inlet, NU and Dwight Stanford, CAO of the Town of Strathmore, AB. 

Thanks to the following conference Gold sponsors:  Jardine Lloyd Thompson and Ravenhill Group Inc.  For more information on CAMA and the 2014 conference, visit CAMA’s website (  You can also check out CAMA on Facebook or on Twitter (@CAMALink).

For those members that were unable to attend the 2014 Conference (or if you were at the Conference and would like to hear the session again or share it with your staff), live webcasting will be made available in the Member's Section of the CAMA website for most sessions in the very near future.

Hughes Elected President of the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators
Robert Hughes, Chief Administrative Officer
Town of Stratford, PE
Robert Hughes, P. Eng., Chief Administrative Officer, Town of Stratford, PE was elected President of the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA) at the Association’s Annual General Meeting held on May 28, 2014 in Niagara Falls, ON.  He is the CAMA representative for Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island and most recently served as First Vice-President for the Association.

Mr. Hughes will lead the 500-member national organization of municipal management professionals for the next year. He succeeds outgoing CAMA President, Jean Savard, Director of Special Projects in the Office of the Chief Administrative Officer for Quebec, QC and outgoing CAMA representative of Quebec.
“My objective, as CAMA President over the next year, will be to improve the relevance and value of CAMA to our members and to enhance the reputation of CAMA and the profile of municipal administrators” said Mr. Hughes.

Mr. Hughes was born and raised in Charlottetown, PE.  He attended U.P.E.I. and the Technical University of Nova Scotia where he obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering in 1985.  He then worked as a consulting engineer in Charlottetown until 1988 when he moved to Dartmouth as a founding partner in a small electrical consulting firm.
In 1991, Mr. Hughes returned to PEI to work as a utility engineer for the Summerside Electric Department. In 1995, he became the Director of Technical Services for the newly formed City of Summerside, PE with responsibility for engineering, land use planning and information technology. He received his Diploma in Public Management from Henson College at Dalhousie University in 1998.  On August 1, 1999, he assumed the position of Chief Administrative Officer with the Town of Stratford, PE. In that role, he is responsible for the day to day operations of all Town entities and for providing policy advice to Town Council.  Over the years, Mr. Hughes has chaired various boards and committees related to engineering, business, environmental, and municipal associations. He and his wife Debby have two children, Jonathan and Samantha.

NEW BOARD MEMBER: Jack Benzaquen
Jack Benzaquen, City Manager
City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux, QC
Québec CAMA Representative
Jack Benzaquen, City Manager, City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux, QC, has been elected to the board of directors for the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA).  He was elected as the CAMA representative for Quebec during the association’s annual general meeting, held on May 27, 2014, during CAMA’s national conference in Niagara Falls, ON.

Jack has a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the École Polytechnique and an MBA from the HEC Montreal.  For the first seven years of his career, he was project engineer at GoodYear Canada and Johnson & Johnson.
In 1991, Jack was hired as Director of Technical Services at the Jewish General Hospital, where he oversaw 500 employees.  His achievements were recognized by the Jeune Chambre de commerce de Montréal who named him 'Jeune cadre du Québec' in 1995, and in the following year, the HEC honoured him with an achievement award.
In 2000, he was appointed City Manager of the City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux, a city in the West Island of Montreal which has a population of 50,000.  In 2002, he became Manager of the Borough of Dollard-des-Ormeaux/Roxboro, within the new City of Montreal.  In 2006, the City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux demerged and once again, Benzaquen was named City Manager, a position he has held since then.
For several years, he has been highly involved with the Association des Directeurs Généraux des Municipalités du Québec (ADGMQ) and will finish his term in the near future as president. “I am delighted to be on the CAMA Board of Directors and I look forward to contributing to the success of this organization,” says Mr. Benzaquen.
“I am pleased to welcome Mr. Benzaquen to the CAMA Board of Directors,” said Robert Hughes, President of the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators and Town Manager for the Town of Stratford, PEI. “His background in the private sector and municipal government makes him a welcome addition.”

Jake Rudolph, Deputy City Manager
City of Abbotsford, BC
British Columbia/Yukon CAMA Representative
Jake Rudolph, Deputy City Manager, City of Abbotsford, BC has been elected to the board of directors for the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA).  He was elected as the CAMA representative for British Columbia and Yukon during the association’s annual general meeting, held on May 28, 2014 at CAMA’s national conference in Niagara Falls, ON.

Jake has had a professional career which spans 32 plus years in four provinces, five municipalities and one regional agency.  For the past 16 years, he has resided in British Columbia and is currently the Deputy City Manager with the City of Abbotsford.  Previously, he was the CAO with the City of Pitt Meadows for 12 years.  He has also held positions with the District of Maple Ridge, the City of Fredericton, Kings County Nova Scotia and the Edmonton Metropolitan Regional Planning Commission.
Throughout his career, Jake has taken an active role in his profession and his community serving on various committee and boards. These have included past roles with IPAC, URISA and the Atlantic Planners Institute.  He has chaired the Regional Administrators Advisory Committee (RAAC) serving Metro Vancouver and co-chaired the Metro Vancouver Integrated Provincial Regional Emergency Management (IPREM) function.  As a member of CAMA, he has served on the Awards Committee on two occasions and an Election Process Review Committee a number of years ago.   He is currently a member of the ICMA Sustainable Communities Advisory Committee.
At the community level, his most recent and significant role was with the Ridge Meadows Minor Hockey Board including four years as President, five years as Vice-President and many more as coach.
Jake is a life-long learner with a Master’s Degree in Planning, an MBA and most recently completion of the Harvard Executive Leadership Program.   In addition to living in BC he has a strong connection to the Yukon where one of his two sons lives and works.

“It is indeed an honour to have the opportunity to represent BC and the Yukon on a Board dedicated to supporting the profession and advancing best practices in local government,” said Mr. Rudolph.
“I am pleased to welcome Mr. Rudolph to the CAMA board of directors,” said Robert Hughes, President of the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators and Chief Administrative Officer for the Town of Stratford, PE.  “His career in municipal government across this country makes him a welcome addition.”

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