COVID-19 : Update on CDA Institute Flagship Events

Dear Members of the Conference of Defence Associations Community,

As many have noticed in past months, our programmes have evolved considerably in the context of the pandemic. We’ve put together some very successful webinars that thousands of viewers enjoyed in over 30 nations, on the subjects of Pandemic Responses, All Five Eyes on 5G, and Quantum Supremacy. Two more instalments of the Metro Expert Series Webinars are planned for the upcoming month in cooperation with the EU Delegation to Canada, which we are excited to share with you, and once again are designed to be global in scope and reach. However, we’ve been fairly silent on the topic of our two flagship events, the Vimy Gala and the Ottawa Conference, because planning was evolving in real time with the trends and regulations surrounding the pandemic. The time has come to show our cards.


First, the Vimy Award has been launched and we were happy to announce LGen J. O. Michel Maisonneuve (ret’d) as the 30th anniversary laureate last month. We’ll be following up this launch with a full page ad in the National Post and Le Devoir to celebrate in both official languages – look for them on Saturday November 7th. With regard to the award ceremony, we owe it to the laureate to host an celebration that is worthy of their accomplishments, and we will do so. However, recent consultation with our key stakeholders have led us to postpone the timing of the ceremony to a time when the pandemic will be downward trending or flatter, which will likely mean in Spring 2021, on a scale permissible under public health guidelines. Assuming we’re all vaccinated next summer and getting somewhat back to normal, the regular Vimy Gala will be back in 2021 and we’ll look forward to seeing as many of you there as the room will fit.


With regard to our upcoming Ottawa Conference, it will be held as a hybrid event including a maximum number of in-person guests (to be determined by public health regulations at a later date) as well as a webcasted version that will be open to the public and considerably less expensive than our historical prices to attend. However, access to the in-person event will be restricted to sponsors, speakers, and guests of the Institute until further notice. As always, there will be live Q&A sessions with the audience built into our online platform, because the Ottawa Conference is meant to foster open dialogue and everyone is invited to partake. Invitations to speakers have begun and confirmations are coming in. The quality of the speakers will be absolutely stunning this time around, so we can’t wait to do the launch and let you know the full roster of guests speakers.

PLEASE HOLD THE DATE : March 10-11 is when the Ottawa Conference will be taking place, but once registered, you’ll also be able to watch the capsules at your convenience, later if you are not available for the live broadcast.

Thank you for your time, and stay safe!

Youri Cormier

Executive Director

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