Canadian author and poet Margaret Artwood will be the keynote speaker at the Union of B.C. Municipalities (UBCM) conference being held virtually from Sept. 22 to 24. (The Canadian Press photo)

Canadian author Margaret Atwood to be keynote speaker at UBCM Conference

Atwood to speak on climate change, COVID and community

Margaret Atwood, Canadian poet and author known for The Handmaid’s Tale, will be the keynote speaker at the upcoming September online conference of the Union of B.C. Municipalities (UBCM).

“We want someone that appeals to our delegates across Canada and that would truly deliver an engaging keynote,” said UBCM president and Sooke mayor Maja Tait. “She will be speaking on the themes of climate change, COVID and the community and we couldn’t be more excited. She’s a national treasure.”

Tait pointed out that many well-known speakers who wouldn’t normally be in their budget are now more affordable for events due to the pandemic.

This will be the first year the conference has been held virtually since its beginnings in 1905. Each year has seen physical gatherings through the 1918 Spanish flu and two world wars. According to Tait, although the event will look dramatically different, attendees will still be able to vote on resolutions, participate in workshops and engage in one-on-one meetings.

Premier John Horgan is expected to make an address to the conference attendees online.

READ MORE: Sooke mayor again tapped to aid international program

As president-elect since September 2019, Tait says she’s been just as busy organizing the conference as she would be meeting people in person – a decent chunk of her time is saved by not travelling to destinations. Now, she’s takes meetings at her dining room table.

“It feels like the ground changes every single day. We know that we will miss meeting in person to network, but there’s still ways to engage with peers and make this a strong professional event.”

Tait and a small team of IT and staff support will be hosting the conference out of the Victoria Convention Centre, currently closed to the public. In addition, the price has been slightly reduced for attendees to accommodate the financial strain during the pandemic.

The virtual conference takes place Sept. 22 to 24. With over 500 delegates already registered, registration is available at access.ubcm.ca/registration until Sept. 11 at 4 p.m.

ALSO READ: Mayor’s Letter: Sooke delivers on helping the homeless


@iaaronguillen
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

aaron.guillen@goldstreamgazette.com

SookeUBCM

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Blackberry festival moves forward with drive-thru in Metchosin

Event takes place on Oct. 3 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

No ‘harmonious solution’ dogs on beaches in Saanich, community-led study finds

Cadboro Bay Residents’ Association present findings to council Sept. 28

B.C. Greens introduce all-women slate for Victoria, Saanich and Oak Bay ridings

School trustee Nicole Duncan assumes Oak Bay-Gordon Head candidacy

Long-time Central Saanich councillor named NDP candidate for Saanich North and the Islands

King, who joins election campaign one week after its start, hopes to unseat Adam Olsen

VicPD explains why calls for service can’t be compared to years before 2019

Department launches Open VicPD, new platform in aim to be transparent

B.C. counts 125 new COVID-19 cases, up to 1,284 active

No new deaths or health care facility outbreaks

Health Canada green-lights rapid COVID-19 test

Health Canada approved the BCube test from Hyris Ltd. in the United Kingdom Sept. 23

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

FINLAYSON: COVID-related job losses concentrated in urban areas… especially Metro Vancouver

The biggest job losses, in absolute terms, have been in Metro Vancouver

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

6 puppies rescued in mass seizure on Princeton farm die from illness: BC SPCA

Of the 97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized, most of the puppies suffered from parvo

Action demanded over death of First Nations youth in Abbotsford group home

Family and Indigenous organizations push for thorough investigation

U.S. boater fined $1,000 for violation of Quarantine Act

49-year-old man entered Canada to visit girlfriend in Surrey

More sex abuse charges laid against B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’

Investigators now focussing efforts on alleged victims within the Glad Tidings Church community

Most Read