CCAE Thought Leaders’ Discussion Forum

Supported by:



Monthly, 2 p.m. Eastern
July 14th - December 8th

The CCAE Thought Leaders’ Discussion Forum will provide Advancement Leaders from across Canada an opportunity to contribute their knowledge, experience, and insights through a formalized process. The participants for the Forum are proven leaders with expertise in specific topics relevant to each Thought Leader Forum agenda.

The Forum will be hosted monthly and consist of a mix of presentation topics with open discussion.


Registration Packages (available for CCAE members only)

Members : 
Full Summit Package: $399 (access to all sessions)
Single Session: $100 (access to the session of your choice)


Get the most out of the discussion:




November 10, 2 p.m. eastern 
The Future of Award Management & Student Funding
Randy Hashem, Solutions Engineer, Blackbaud Canada
Scott Mousseau, Manager, Advancement Services, Fanshawe College
Betcy M. Scaria, Awards Officer, Sheridan College

The climate for students being able to afford to attend college or university this year in Canada is uncertain to say the least. The COVID-19 crisis has brought more financial challenges to young people considering post-secondary education than ever before. Not only is the idea of summer employment precarious, but the demand and competition for financial aid and scholarships will be more prevalent than ever before. Increased demand on funding for students will put increased strain on financial aid and scholarship administrators. Not only will we see amplified demand, but will also see the need for improved access for student applicants, award reviewers, administrators, and the ability to steward award donors virtually. So often, systems that have existed to date are reliant on in person interactions and varied, unreliable tracking and disbursement methodologies. It will be imperative for institutions to embrace safe, dependable cloud technology to meet the needs of students and staff moving through this time of change and uncertainty that will have a lasting impact.

Learning Objectives

  • How to implement technology to simplify the submission and review process
  • Creating new stewardship opportunities
  • Fostering cross departmental efficiencies to support increased demand

Randy Hashem
Randy Hashem

Scott Mousseau
Scott Mousseau

Betcy M. Scaria
Betcy M. Scaria

December 8, 2 p.m. eastern 
Corporate Citizenship and Post-Secondary Education: A Partnership to Improve Lives
Kari Scarlett, Manager, Community Banking and External Events, Prairie Region, TD Bank Group
Farah Kurji, Senior Manager, Philanthropy, Global Corporate Citizenship, TD Bank Group

Kari Scarlett
Kari Scarlett

Farah KurjiFarah Kurji

TD, as with many financial institutions in Canada, has evolved how they engage and invest in the communities. The approach is dedicated to improving people's lives, with the focus on outcomes. This session will provide insights and clarity on TD's new corporate citizenship platform, the TD Ready Commitment, the annual TD Ready Challenge, and TD's response to the COVID19 pandemic.

Learning Objectives

  • Share TD's new corporate citizenship platform, TD Ready Commitment and the TD Ready Challenge
  • Provide insights on how TD's community investment has evolved, and TD's response during the pandemic
  • Provide insights on TD corporate citizenship goals and objectives, and share best practices for post-secondary institutions interested in applying for support

July 14, 2 p.m. eastern (concluded)
Discussion led by Mark Hazlett, President & CEO, CCAE & Derek Cassoff, McGill University, (Chair of the CCAE Board)

Derek Cassoff
Derek Cassoff

Mark Hazlett
Mark Hazlett

Topics include

  • The new CCAE story – a strong, focussed strategic plan for the future
  • How CCAE is positioning itself as the educational advancement sector leader
  • Trends and insights from the 2nd edition of the CASE-CCAE Support of Education Survey and the launch of the 3rd edition

August 11, 2 p.m. eastern (Webinar recording available on demand with registration)
Continuous Innovation During a Time of Constraint
Melinda Church, Senior Vice President and Managing Partner, Grenzebach Glier and Associates

melinda churchMelinda Church

In early March, the rules of the road changed—suddenly and dramatically. Campuses sent students home. Events were cancelled. The horizon was uncertain. Seemingly overnight, the engagement of alumni, donors, and friends flipped to “socially distant” tools and tactics. For many teams, this was a swing-the-bat moment, freeing them to innovate quickly and to partner in new ways with others in their organizations. Canadian schools, colleges, and universities embraced the opportunity, and have much impressive work to show for it.

In this session, Melinda Church of Grenzebach Glier and Associates will showcase several innovative approaches undertaken by Canadian institutions this spring and summer. She will break down some of the principles behind this progressive work and lead a conversation about what comes next. With a near-term that looks much like today, how can alumni and development teams continue to innovate in their engagement and communications? The session is designed for collaborative ideation and problem-solving, all to develop actionable insights.

Learning Objectives

  • Common principles of innovation
  • Ways to collaborate across organizations for shared benefit
  • How to engage key alumni and friends in next-gen virtual programming

September 15, 2 p.m. eastern (Webinar recording available on demand with registration)
COVID-19 6-month check-in panel discussion: What Impact has the COVID-19 Pandemic had on Advancement Strategies
Penny Blackwood, Executive Director, Office of Development, Memorial University of Newfoundland  
Greg Dick, Executive Director, Advancement and Senior Director, Public


Stewardship & Donor Relations Summit

January 26 - March 9, 2021
Tuesdays at 2:00 p.m. Eastern

Originally intended to be delivered in-person, in March 2020, the Stewardship & Donor Relations Summit will now be offered in an online format.

Consistency, communication, and collaboration are key factors in building strong relationships with institution stakeholders. This summit program is designed to cover a variety of topics to demonstrate the unique ways professionals across Canada are working to engage donors, elevate relationships and share their campus stories.

Topics will range across disciplines and feature ample time for discussion and collaboration.

Registration opening soon!



Tracey BaileyTracey Bailey

January 26, 2 p.m. Eastern 
Innovating stewardship communications
Tracey Bailey -Special Advisor, Development, McMaster University

The simple definition of innovating: make changes in something established, especially by introducing new methods, ideas and products. In the stewardship portfolio you are responsible for nourishing the donor’s experience of your institution’s promises through a variety of activities, events, publications and correspondence. At the moment we have too many communications channels to choose from and the rise of individualism which challenges our ability and resources to speak to all our donors personally and authentically. Add a pandemic into the mix and we are working hard to reinvent our practises. In this chaos, opportunities for stewardship innovation abound. Focusing on written communications (and yes, videos and visuals) we will explore both the technical and creative strategies to help you sustain deep, meaningful, emotional and personal relationships with your donors.

Learning Objectives
  • Build an ecosystem across your institution that will provide you with the rich content you share with your donors
  • Work with communications to make your correspondence, reports and stories more personal, intriguing and engaging
  • Develop and communicate about your strategic stewardship communications plan and share ideas for shaking up stewardship communications

Ashleigh ManktelowAshleigh Manktelow

Virginia RoeVirginia Roe

February 2, 2 p.m. Eastern 
Stewarding the $200M Gift: The Case of John and Marcy McCall MacBain
Ashleigh Manktelow -Director of Donor and Volunteer Engagement, McGill University
Virginia Roe -Associate Director, Donor Relations, McGill University

On February 13, 2019, John and Marcy McCall MacBain announced that they were donating $200M to McGill University to create the McCall MacBain Scholarships at McGill, the single largest gift ever received by a Canadian organization. But visionary gifts like this one are not made overnight.

In this session, we will speak to the factors that led the McCall MacBains to make this transformational gift and explore the role of stewardship in leading donors to their full gift-giving potential.

Learning Objectives
  • Factors that contribute to making donor dreams a reality (and our University’s dreams too!) – hint: capacity of institution and collaboration are key
  • How Volunteerism plays an important role in creating purpose for donors
  • How Stewardship plays an important role in closing multimillion dollar gifts

John DaviesJohn Davies

February 9, 2 p.m. Eastern 
Stewardship and the creation and maintenance of long-term relationships that lead to a continued flow of increasingly larger significant gifts
John Davies M.A. -Partner and Senior Consultant, Global Philanthropic Inc.

This session will serve to highlight the importance of stewardship in increasing the size and frequency of major gifts, including the key pitfalls to avoid and important cultural sensitivities that must be observed. Case studies will be presented and discussed.

Learning Objectives
  • An insight into trends that are shaping a new fundraising world
  • The importance of long-term planning and the critically important role of stewardship in the giving cycle
  • How accurate and constant research is playing an increasingly larger role in securing gifts that make a difference


February 16, 2 p.m. Eastern 
Session details coming soon!

Heather DyckHeather Dyck

February 23, 2 p.m. Eastern 
Name of the Game
Heather Dyck -Stewardship Officer, Acknowledgement, University of Alberta

In the ever-expanding philanthropic naming game at educational institutions across Canada, we grapple with many questions from how to value physical spaces to what our naming policies should include. In this session, we’ll tackle some of the tricky questions related to naming and consider how we can best utilize naming to recognize the generosity of our donors while ensuring minimal risk for our