Calgary Economic Development brings Be Part of the Energy campaign back to British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec

October 21, 2014

Mayor of Calgary will speak to business and students about opportunities in Calgary 

(CALGARY, AB) –Calgary Economic Development, in partnership with members of Calgary’s corporate sector, brings its award winning campaign, Calgary. Be Part of the Energy.™ back to Ontario and Quebec this week. The campaign is aimed at attracting qualified workers and business to the city and is part of a larger campaign to showcase the opportunities in Calgary to make a living and to make a life.

Mayor Naheed Nenshi leads a four-day visit to Eastern Canada as the campaign’s spokesperson to highlight the tremendous opportunities for all Canadians in Calgary. Mayor Nenshi will conduct media interviews and keynote several speaking engagements with the University of Toronto, George Brown College, the Empire Club of Canada and Ryerson University in Toronto; Mohawk College and the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce in Hamilton and McGill University, the University of Montreal and Ecole Polytechnic in Montreal.

With Calgary expected to continue to be a leader in Canada’s economy through 2017 and Calgary companies continuing to face a labour shortage, Calgary. Be Part of the Energy™ will raise national awareness about what Calgary has to offer to as a place to live, work or do business.

“If they haven’t already, all Canadians should be taking a look at Calgary,” said Mayor Naheed Nenshi. “More than an energy capital, Calgary is becoming a hub for finance, technology, logistics and the creative industries. Our unique energy makes Calgary a destination for people from across Canada as a place to build a life, business, and career.”

Building on Calgary. Be Part of the Energy.™ missions of 2011, 2012 and 2013, this eastern Canada mission targets people and industries critical to Calgary’s future economic growth.

In addition to addressing labour opportunities for Canadians, Mayor Nenshi will also speak about the importance of building strong cities in order to build a strong Canada. His address will broach the topic of how Canadian cities need to ensure they are vibrant and innovative in order to attract and retain the best and brightest talent in the world.

Media are invited to hear Mayor Nenshi speak at the following events:

Tuesday October 21 - Toronto 

Big cities, big ideas (#bcbi) - A conversation with Richard Florida 
University of Toronto – Shift Disturbers Speaker Series
Desautels Event Hall 2nd Floor, South Building
105 George Street Martin Prosperity Institute
7 p.m.

Wednesday October 22 – Toronto

The Calgary opportunity
George Brown College
Waterfront Campus 51 Dockside Drive
10 a.m.

Resilient Cities
Empire Club of Canada
Grand Ballroom
100 Front St W Royal York Hotel
11:30 a.m.

The role of cities and why they matter
Jack Layton Memorial Lecture Series
350 Victoria St Ryerson University
6 p.m.

Thursday October 23 - Hamilton 

The Calgary opportunity
McMaster University
2 p.m.

The role of cities and why they matter (#ambitioushamont)
Hamilton Chamber of Commerce ‘Ambitious Cities Series’
Scottish Rite Club
4 Queen Street South
7 p.m.

Friday, October 24 - Montreal 

The Calgary opportunity 
Concordia University
Engineering and Visual Arts Complex
1515 St. Catherine Street West Room EV- 1.615
2 p.m.

For more information on the Be Part of the Energy™ campaign and to learn about the opportunities in Calgary, please visit the revamped website and landing page. 

About Calgary Economic Development 

Calgary Economic Development is an opportunity-maker, helping to spark and fuel Calgary’s growth. Our job is to connect people with resources that can help them grow their careers or businesses, thrive in new locations or markets, and feel at home in our community. We offer a wealth of information to help everyone succeed and we tirelessly promote Calgary, in Canada and around the world. We’re exhilarated about our role in shaping and sharing Calgary’s story and we’re proud to be part of the energy. For more information, please visit our website at and follow us on Twitter @calgaryeconomic.

(Posted with permission from Calgary Economic Development)

Let’s celebrate our Everyday Political Citizens!

Chances are you know an “Everyday Political Citizen”—an average person who takes simple actions to make our communities better. They’re the friend you go to for trusted opinions about what’s going on in our community or family member who encouraged you to vote for the first time. They’re that colleague that volunteers for political campaigns and asked you to get involved as well. They’re the student who sits next to you in class who inspires others to take up an important cause at school. 

These are Everyday Political Citizens, and now we have a chance to celebrate them and their dedication. Before, Friday, October 31 nominate them for an Everyday Political Citizen award

Politics is more than elections and politicians. I know that very well! Even in my journey, I know that there were many Everyday Political Citizens that helped me along—they inspired me, supported me, and helped me when I needed it the most. In every political campaign I've been a part of, I've been blessed to work with so many wonderfully engaged people—people who care so much about their community and their fellow citizens. And, even now, in my daily work as mayor, I’m so lucky to work with countless Everyday Political Citizens.

 So, please, think about the amazing Everyday Political Citizens in your life and give them the recognition they deserve by nominating them for this national award.

- Mayor Naheed Nenshi
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Premier, Edmonton Mayor, and Mayor Nenshi sign Framework Agreement for Charters

Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson, Premier Jim Prentice and Mayor Nenshi.
Photo by Lyle Aspinal, Calgary Sun (via Twitter)
This afternoon, I was pleased to join with Premier Jim Prentice and Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson to sign a "Framework Agreement For Charters" between our orders of government. City charters for Alberta's big cities is something we've been working on for some time, and this framework is an important step toward achieving this important legislative change. A charter makes it easier for our cities to serve our citizens with the services they need the most and it will definitely improve the lives of Calgarians and Edmontonians. I look forward to working with the Premier and Minister Diana McQueen to redefine the relationship between the province and our two biggest cities.

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Statement from Mayor Nenshi regarding flood recovery announcement from Premier Prentice

We are pleased that the Premier has made flood recovery and mitigation a major priority, but we are surprised at the scope of the announcement, as it represents a significant departure from previous policy, and it was announced without prior discussion with the City's flood experts or policy-makers. The Premier, just yesterday, announced he would be treating municipalities as true partners. We look forward to that.
We are pleased that the Premier announced that the government is tripling the number of appeal officers for the Disaster Recovery Program. This will make a real difference for the families affected by the flood. We hope that when processing these appeals, the Provincial government will address the legitimate concerns that have been raised by flood affected families and that their claims will be re-assessed properly, fairly and quickly.
With respect to the two flood mitigation measures for Calgary that were announced by Premier Prentice today - namely the dry reservoir in Springbank and the direction to negotiate a permanent water management agreement with TransAlta - it is difficult for us to comment in detail since The City of Calgary has not yet been consulted with respect to either proposal and our experts have not yet seen any engineering studies. 
However, we do have a few initial observations:
1.    The "room for the river" concept for the Springbank reservoir, while intriguing, has never been discussed with City officials. It represents a real departure from the previous plan, where the reservoir would have played a role in both flood and drought years. This dry dam would not be used except during a flood and would not allow for comprehensive water management, which the Province had previously stated was their goal for this project. 
2.    We are very interested to hear the Premier state that management of the existing TransAlta dams will offer 1:100 year flood protection and that the Springbank dry dam will offer 1:200 year flood protection. We will be asking Provincial officials to share their engineering studies that demonstrate that. Based on our research and analysis to date, we believe that at least two and maybe all three proposed large scale flood mitigation measures will be required (namely, Springbank, McLean Creek and the Glenmore Reservoir Tunnel).  It is surprising that the Province would announce one project without having completed the analysis on the impact of the other two projects, since they all must be analyzed together. For example, using hypothetical numbers, it may be that the tunnel could be double the cost of the other projects but it may mean that either or both other projects would no longer be needed. The cost-benefit analyses cannot stand alone. 
3.    The Government of Canada in a recent study indicated that 1:100 year standard is no longer appropriate. Calgary needs protection to a much higher level. Recent discussions with Provincial officials have been focused on mitigation at a significantly higher standard.
The floods had a devastating impact on our community and it is very important that we make the right decisions with respect to flood mitigation projects. Teams from the City and the Province have been working very collaboratively under the previous two Premiers and we hope that continues under the "new management". 

- Mayor Naheed Nenshi

A huge honour to receive a Blackfoot name

On Sunday, September 14, I had one of the most meaningful and memorable experiences of my life. At Making Treaty 7, I was given a Blackfoot name by elder Pete Standing Alone. The name is A'-BPE'S-TO'-TSEE-PSS-TSS or Clan Leader. I am completely overwhelmed by this great honour and will cherish this name. Here is the text from Mr. Standing Alone explaining why he chose this name for me:
A’-BPE’S-TO’-TSEE-PSS-TSS, Clan Leader
Translation: the one that moves camp with followers behind him
The people of Calgary are the Clan followers, the city is the Clan. People are still coming to Calgary from all over the world, and the Mayor has far surpassed one million for clan followers. 
Clan Leaders are given the authority by their clan members to support and protect them. The Clan Leader represents the Clan when all the Clans gather. Gatherings include Aakokatssin—Circle Encampment now referred to as the Sundance.
The Clan system existence was sources by the members; like Calgary, Mayor Nenshi is selected by the clan because he is a good man, kind, wise generous and brave. As of today, the Clan system is no longer used among our people, but people continue to identify themselves with various clans, such as the Fish Eaters, Old agency (Belly Butts area), and Lone Fighters.
No one has given the name A’-BPE’S-TO’-TSEE-PSS-TSS to an individual. A group of men are called A’-BPE’S-TO’-TSEE-PSS-TSS. In 2006, over one million people had come to Calgary, and, as Mayor, he continues to be recognized for all the members who have come under his leadership seeking a better life. These are the reasons I give him the name A’-BPE’S-TO’-TSEE-PSS-TSS.
During the evening I also received a Chief Joseph Pendleton blanket (pictured here) from the Calgary Aboriginal Urban Affairs Committee. Both honours are deeply humbling.


- Mayor Naheed Nenshi
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Take Mayor Nenshi's Walk Challenge

Today, Mayor Naheed Nenshi joined with parents and a teacher to launch Mayor Nenshi’s Walk Challenge—a campaign to encourage Calgary kids to walk (or bike or rollerblade or any form of active transportation) to school this year. By walking to school, Calgary kids can help reduce the emission of greenhouse gasses in our environment, get additional exercise to stay fit and healthy, and do better in school. With more kids walking to school, we can also reduce the traffic congestion on streets around our schools.

Media and the public can learn more about Mayor Nenshi’s Walk Challenge at Anyone taking up the challenge is encouraged to share their experience on Facebook (at or Twitter (using #yycwalk).

“I know that a lot of families are very busy getting prepared for school and work every day,” said Mayor Nenshi. “But incorporating an additional 15 or 20 minutes into your routine can yield big benefits.”

Mayor Nenshi was joined today by:

  • Tiffany Stones – A parent in Altadore who, with the help of other parents in the area, organized a Walking School Bus.
  • Lori Beattie - A parent in Elboya who helped her child and his friends set up a “bike gang” that bikes to school year-round.
  • Debbie Rheinstein – A teacher at Captain Nichola Goddard School who supported her students as they created the Green Commuting Hubs program as part of their 2014 Mayor’s Environment Expo project.

Column: Cities matter, but does the next Premier know?

Like many Albertans, I was excited about the Progressive Conservative leadership race. The battle to be our next premier had attracted three good candidates with very different philosophies. And it would unfold over many months, giving Albertans plenty of time to see the candidates interact, and for the candidates to share their visions for the province and the policies to make those visions real.

As we know, the experience has been quite different. There have been few debates, and the policy announcements have ranged from the irrelevant to the bizarre. I’ve heard few specifics about the issues that Albertans consistently rank as most important to them whether it be education funding, significant improvement to the health care system, or (of course) Alberta’s big cities.

Nonetheless, I have a lot of respect for all three candidates. I had the chance to sit down with all three earlier this summer and had great meetings with each. They listened and engaged intently as I highlighted the issues of concern to The City of Calgary.

All do agree that the relationship between The City and The Province was broken, and that the funding model—under which Calgary taxpayers send $4 billion more to The Province than we receive in all provincial services every year—needed to be addressed.

We have to have these conversations because they matter so much to the lives of Calgarians. For example, the creation of the Green Line (the north-central and south-east LRT) is a priority for our citizens, but if we can’t figure out how to cover the $5 billion price tag together, it will not get built. We need that and so much other infrastructure because the growth of our cities—and the needs associated with that growth—is very real. In the last three years, Calgary gained more people than the entire population of Red Deer. We need to act now to find solutions to that and other topics ranging from providing front-line services to eliminating homelessness and poverty in our cities.

With this in mind, I asked the candidates to respond to a survey called Cities Matter. We’ve done this before. In the last PC leadership race and in the last provincial election, we asked each candidate or party specific questions on how they would address city issues, and they all did so. We published their results verbatim to help voters make up their minds.

This time around, all the campaigns responded to the survey without any prodding, and we’ve once again posted the results at

I will admit that I am a bit disappointed. No candidate staked out any bold positions. The answers ranged from vague (at best) to taking us backward (at worst).

We’ve been working diligently on a city charter, for example, through three premiers and four municipal affairs ministers. The PC Party in the last election highlighted the need for these charters. However, all three candidates would take us a step backward on this, something that Calgarians and Edmontonians can ill afford.

None of the candidates offered a clear way forward on the stalled Calgary Metropolitan Plan, and none talked in any detail about how they would assist cities with the cost of growth, infrastructure, downloaded social servicing or policing. None could even muster up the ability to say that abruptly cutting all funding to Calgary’s Performing Arts Centre (a tiny amount for this government but huge for the arts community) was a mistake.

What I am looking for is specific policy ideas that we could debate and discuss with citizens. Even if the policy positions were “the Mayor is wrong and here’s why”, we’d have a place to begin.

There was some good news: all three candidates will review (and hopefully reverse) Alberta Health Services’ decision to make unnecessary, costly changes to a 911 system that is working very well as it is. All of them were willing to work with the cities as partners, not as enemies. If we’re going to ensure the prosperity of this province and its citizens, we must work together to build the cities we need—cities that move, that are affordable, and where people want to live and thrive.

All five parties in the last election agreed that the current system doesn’t work and that change is needed. The Opposition parties have, in varying degrees, developed plans, policies, and commitments to fix the problems. Some are good, some are bad, but they exist.

Our new Premier will have a short period of time to catch up and prove to all Albertans that cities matter. And I sincerely look forward to working with him to help make that happen.

- Mayor Naheed Nenshi