We are proud to host a diverse cast of experienced Speakers at this year’s conference.

Charles Bernard

Lead economist at CADA

Charles Bernard is CADA’s Lead Economist and Policy Advisor in the Ottawa Office. Charles Bernard joined CADA with a strong background in economic policy which began when studying political science and economics in his home town at the University of Sherbrooke. A proud Quebecer, Charles completed a BA in Applied Policy Studies with a concentration in political economy followed by a Master’s degree in the same field. In his Master’s program Charles conducted research into the political dynamics of economic integration and the institutional influence of trade agreements on national policy making. In his SSHRC-funded MA dissertation, Charles examined how the CUSMA agreement impacted the economic interests of Canadian trade and digital economy. Charles has also published automotive economic research including “Make America Great Again: A New Auto Pact for the North American Car Industry.”

Charles is an alumnus of the prestigious Parliamentary Internship Program, organized under the auspices of the Speaker of the House of Commons. This program provides the highest-level public policy training in Canada. Charles has strong economic data analysis and research skills. During his time on Parliament Hill, he led the policy research and briefings for the committee work for two well-known Members of Parliament. Prior to joining CADA, Charles held University teaching roles in economics and policy and has led research projects for a leading Canadian trade association. Charles is perfectly bilingual in both written and oral French and English and an excellent public speaker.

Micah Birkholz

High performing SaaS sales executive. Consistent performer. Continually exceeds quota. Engaging public speaker/presenter. Speaker credits include: Digital Dealer UAAMG AAAS DMSC IDS

Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG): Nav Dhaliwal & Joel Jones

Session: Franchise Law – What Dealers Need to Know

Joel Jones and Nav Dhaliwal are partners in the Automotive sector group at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG). Having acted on over 100 transactions across Canada, they understand the dynamics of franchising, operating, purchasing and selling dealerships and bring long-standing relationships with OEMs, financial institutions and auditors to provide unique value. As a trusted business partner and legal services provider to several of Canada’s largest dealership groups, Joel and Nav move beyond legal to anticipate, consult and advise in a rapidly changing economic landscape to address your business issues and opportunities. They bring leading expertise in franchise law, mergers and acquisitions (M&A), tax, structured finance and securitization, and labour and employment to help you look around corners and anticipate what’s next.

In this session, Joel and Nav will:

  • Provide an overview of franchise laws
  • Discuss the current NADAP agreement and identify specific protections in place
  • Outline the key implications for your business and related best practices

Kaylee Felio

With over 9 years of experience in the automotive industry, Kaylee has a passion for helping Parts Managers and their operations to maximize potential profits through the power of technology. Kaylee was attracted to PartsEdge’s offering from the get-go recognizing the unique and powerful impact the service makes on Parts Operations profits and efficiency. Initially working in the operations department, Kaylee developed a keen sense of day-to-day operational needs as well as gaps in resources and education. Putting this together with her growth mindset and heart of service, Kaylee transitioned into spreading the word about PartsEdge while sharing her parts expertise with the industry at large. When she’s not obsessing over the latest parts data, Kaylee loves spending time in the great outdoors with her husband Brian (who happens to be a Parts Manager), their daughter Trinity, and fur baby Ansel.

THINK with Google Automotive Canada

Google: Chace Estes, Mathew Growden & Kamal Oberoi

Session: THINK with Google – The auto dealer’s guide to navigating today’s dealership landscape

Join Google Canada’s Automotive team for an insightful set of short run presentations over a 3 hr session.

The team will cover topics from ridesharing to electric vehicles to driverless cars, the disruptions developing long before COVID-19. The past year has brought about rapid shifts in consumer behaviour, which accelerated new trends that impacted the entire sector, from manufacturers to dealers.

Research shows Over 60% of Canadians looking to buy a car said they would use an online purchase option. For dealerships and automotive marketers, this required a quick pivot to online retailing and a fully digitized purchase journey.

Navigating the current inventory supply crisis is complicated and challenging, but there are new ways for auto marketers, and dealerships in particular, to turn the changes and challenges into new opportunities.

Chace Estes from Google Automotive Canada

Chace Estes

Chace Estes is the Head of Industry for Auto in Canada. He started his career at Google over 10 years ago and made the transition to the Auto industry in 2018.

Chace started his career in the finance industry before obtaining his MBA from Pepperdine University. He joined Google’s NYC office shortly after graduation and transferred to the Toronto office in 2012.

Mathew Growden from Google Automotive Canada

Mathew Growden

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.

Kamal Oberoi from Google Automotive Canada

Kamal Oberoi

Kamal is the Sector Insights Lead for Auto at Google Canada. He started his career at Google in 2017 as the Head of Brand Measurement in APAC. He transitioned to the Auto Sector in Canada in 2020.

Kamal started his career in sales and transitioned to media analytics and research working across multiple sectors and markets.

Peter Heppner

Peter started his dealership career at Don Folk Chevrolet Oldsmobile in Kelowna, BC, before moving on to other roles in the industry. He later worked for Mr. Bob Wolfe of Alberta’s Wolfe Automotive Group and eventually earned partnership, in Wolfe’s Edmonton operations at the time which included Edmonton Motors Limited and Western Pontiac Buick GMC. Years later, he and Mr. Wolfe purchased as co- dealers the GM dealership in Langley. Over time he bought out the Wolfe interest.

He has served and participated on countless industry committees, including the Alberta Motor Vehicle Industry Council (AMVIC); President of the Edmonton Motor Dealers Association (EMDA); a Board Member of the Motor Dealers Association (MDA) of Alberta; and Chairman of the General Motors National Dealer Communication Team. Additionally served and serves on numerous GM Marketing Advisory Boards including regional committees in both Alberta and B.C. as well as Chairing GM’s National Marketing Advisory Board. He is also the Past Chair of the New Car Dealers Association of BC.

Shane King

Shane King, CPA, CA, is the National Leader for MNP’s Succession Services practice and a member of the Assurance team. Shane has more than 20 years of experience providing practical assurance, tax and succession solutions to clients in various industries, including manufacturing, construction, fishing, storage and incorporated professional services.

Shane oversees the delivery of succession services in each region across Canada. He is also actively involved with the succession team within B.C., working alongside clients to support them in successfully dealing with issues as they prepare for the next stage of their lives.

To further educate clients and business owners, Shane has been a speaker and a panelist on succession planning, communication, governance and other issues of importance to entrepreneurs and family businesses. He has also contributed articles on these subjects to Business in Vancouver.

Shane earned a Financial Management Diploma from Kwantlen Polytechnic University in 1992. He is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA), qualifying as a Chartered Accountant (CA) in 1999, and has completed CPA Canada’s In-depth Tax course. Shane is passionate about giving back to his community and has sat on the Kwantlen Polytechnic University Board of Governors and served as board chair.

Dan Moore

President of Vistadash, and author of “Do Moore, Get Moore,” Dan Moore draws on his diverse knowledge of marketing and leadership, giving him a unique perspective on growing businesses. Being a creative thinker and strategist, with management experience at a variety of companies, has awarded him a favorable reputation in the marketing and software community. In addition to his other endeavors, Dan has spoken at events like Tedx Roseville, Gary Vayberchuck’s Agent 2021, Google, and other Conferences.

Jim Pattison

In this corner of the world, there is no bigger name in the auto industry than Jim Pattison. From one auto dealership in 1961, The Jim Pattison Group has grown to become the 2nd largest private company in Canada.

With annual sales of $14 Billion and 49,000 employees, The Jim Pattison Group is made up of a number of operating divisions. These divisions span the automotive industry, as well as other sectors that include advertising, media, agricultural equipment, food and beverage, Ripley’s Believe it or Not!, Guinness World Records, and real estate.

We are thrilled to welcome Mr. Pattison to this year’s Western Canada Dealer Summit in Las Vegas and hope you can join us for this very special fireside chat at the Gala Dinner on September 24th.

Radius Security – Tom Eijzinga & Mario Lessard

Tom has been with Radius Security in Alberta for the past 3 years and has played an integral role in facilitating a strong connection with local police detachments and businesses to work together to combat organized crime and catalytic converter theft. To date, he has been part of more than 200+ apprehensions. Like many others at Radius, security for him goes beyond just keeping crime at bay, but to be the proactive solution to make local communities safer for all.

Mario joined the Durham Regional Police in 1981 and was the inspector of major crime before retiring and becoming a liaison for Radius and the local police authorities. He has been part of many major arrests with the most recent where he seized more than $40 million worth of cocaine, hidden in containers of hot sauce. We quote him “Crime has no boundaries, and we rely on our relationships with other police services to keep our communities safe”.

Key Topics:

Radius Security will be hosting the luncheon at noon between workshops and will provide “food for thought” on how to better protect your dealership from theft and fraud. Come witness real-life examples of both organized and targeted crime and explore the different countermeasures available to you as an auto dealership. It’s the perfect place to socialize, network, and connect with the dealership community over some drinks and food. See you there!

Shaun Raines

Session: New Rules of Fixed Ops For Performance Improvement and Revenue Increase

In 1991, Shaun became the youngest facility manager for parts and accessories giant Worldpac. As the digital age was emerging, Shaun landed an opportunity with the Reynolds and Reynolds team that launched Microsoft Carpoint and Automark Web Services. He also led automotive teams at ReachLocal , DrivingSales and DealerOn. Currently, Shaun is the owner of Dealer SuperHero and specializes in dealership strategy and operational efficiency.

Key Topics:

  • Identify opportunities to simplify online parts and accessories sales
  • Learn how to improve service department communication and increase revenue
  • Understand FixedOps advertising options for best results

Jeremy Reisler

Session: ‘TikTok x Auto’

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.

Key Topics:

  • TikTok Overview
  • Auto, UGC & Brand Campaigns
  • How to Activate

Brent Wees

Session: “Lipstick On An Automation” – Making Sense of Trending Technologies

The automotive tech landscape is chock o’ block full of fantastic technology touting the latest and greatest in “AI-based” approaches to best serve your dealership. This session will debunk what is “artificial intelligence”, what is simply an “automation” and pit both sides of the conversation against one another so attendees can make educated decisions that make the most sense for their dealership needs. Brent Wees is back to challenge our thinking, give actionable takeaways and have a little fun before it’s all over.

Key Topics:

  • Gain a firm understanding of the fundamental differences between artificial intelligence and automation.
  • Understand the PROS and CONS of both approaches and how that affects your dealership’s efforts.
  • See how both approaches can affect more than your marketing efforts and start to look at all aspects of your operation to how technology best serves the store.

Huw Williams

CADA Public Affairs

Huw Williams is the national voice of the Canadian Automobile Dealers in Ottawa and is the lead lobbyist on all federal automotive issues.

Huw has led multiple successful high-profile advocacy campaigns impacting dealers including legislation allowing dealerships to access federal covid wage relief programs, successfully fighting the 25% US Auto tariffs, securing federal vehicle recall protection, several Bank Act reviews, ground breaking stolen vehicle legislation, killing HST on finance income and legislating automotive tool tax deductibility. CADA’s advocacy work has twice been awarded the Canadian Society of Association Executives Association’s most outstanding advocacy award nationwide.

As the public face of the retail automobile dealers, Huw has appeared frequently on CBC, and CTV national news, as well as in feature commentaries on Power Play, Canada Am and W5. He has also appeared as a witness before numerous Parliamentary committees and served as a Board representative on the Canadian Automotive Partnership Council.

Huw’s recent accolades include recognition by the Hill Times newspaper as one of Canada’s Top 100 Lobbyists. His name is also inscribed on the Wall of Honor at Ottawa City Hall and he was named as a “Top Forty Under Forty” winner from the Ottawa Business Journal.

Huw holds a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Ottawa and a Bachelor of Arts (Political Science) from the University of Calgary. He has also completed studies at the Université de Tour in France.

Back to Top