Business leaders rally to support Ottawa 2017

Business leaders rallyOttawa – Mayor Jim Watson introduced the inaugural Board of Directors of the Ottawa 2017 Bureau earlier today.

“We have attracted a talented team to carry Ottawa 2017 to the finish line,” said Mayor Watson. “With these accomplished leaders, representing both public and private sectors, Canadians can be confident that our city will be the place to be for Canada’s 150th birthday celebrations.”

Noel Buckley, who led the formation of this new entity, noted: “The artistic creativity and calibre of events residents and guests will experience in 2017 will be backed by rigorous and accountable management. By using the same business model that led events like the Vancouver Olympics, Quebec 400 and PEI 2014 to success, we will ensure Ottawa 2017 will be a celebration that will make all Canadians proud.”/

The Ottawa 2017 initial Board of Directors includes:

  • Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa
  • Steve Ball, President of the Ottawa Gatineau Hotel Association
  • Councillor Jean Cloutier
  • Councillor Mathieu Fleury
  • Noel Buckley, President and CEO, Ottawa Tourism
  • Carole Anne Piccinin, Executive Director, Ottawa Festivals
  • Bernie Ashe, CEO, Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group
  • Cyril Leeder, President and alternate governor, Ottawa Senators
  • Mark Laroche, President, Ottawa International Airport Authority
  • Saad Bashir, Director of Economic Development and Innovation, City of Ottawa

This volunteer Board of Directors will replace the Mayor’s Ottawa 2017 Task Force, which has conducted community consultations and conceptual development for the Ottawa 2017 initiative since 2013. The Task Force Co-Chairs, Councillors Cloutier and Fleury, will continue to lead community consultations as the program develops.

Additional positions on the Board are being reserved for provincial and federal funding partners, the presenting sponsor and aboriginal and youth representatives. These appointments will be announced by the Ottawa 2017 Bureau as they occur.

Guy Laflamme, who has served as the City of Ottawa’s Head of Celebrations for Ottawa 2017, will continue to lead the initiative as the Executive Director of the Ottawa 2017 Bureau. Guy has extensive experience developing major commemorations, having previously served as the Director General, Capital Experience for the Department of Canadian Heritage, and Senior Vice-President for the National Capital Commission. Also a professor of marketing with the University of Ottawa and the University of Bucharest, Guy Laflamme is currently the Chair-Elect of the World Board of the International Festival and Events Association.

The Ottawa 2017 initiative will celebrate 150 years of the Confederation of Canada. This celebration is expected to attract an additional 1.75 million tourists to Ottawa and contribute as much as $230 million in GDP impact to our city. For more information, please visit

Jerrod Riley
Strategic Initiatives Project Officer – Ottawa 2017 | Agent projet, Initiatives stratégiques – Ottawa 2017
Economic Development and Innovation | Service Innovation et Développement économique
City of Ottawa | Ville d’Ottawa
110 Laurier Ave. West | 110, ave. Laurier Ouest
Ottawa, ON K1P 1J1
tel: 613-580-2424, ext.| poste: 13580
cel: 613-818-3327
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