Business Luncheon Stirs Intellectual Appetites
March 1, 2006 By Pulp & Paper Canada
“Mr. Emerson’s appointment was a pivotal moment for this industry,” stated Chantal Hbert, the National Affairs writer for the Toronto Star. Presided over by Scott Travers, Chairman of PAPTAC, the lun…
“Mr. Emerson’s appointment was a pivotal moment for this industry,” stated Chantal Hbert, the National Affairs writer for the Toronto Star. Presided over by Scott Travers, Chairman of PAPTAC, the luncheon event brought invited guest speaker Hbert to the podium to share the views that she also airs as a columnist for Le Devoir in Montreal and a weekly participant on the political panel on CBC’s The National.
A well-known political pundit, Hbert is an influential and compelling voice on major national issues.
Her comments summarized the fledgling Conservative government and critiqued some of the decisions that had been made in its first few days. While she admitted that it was too early to tell much of what Stephen Harper’s new Conservative minority government would do yet, she warned that there was a good chance that it would not last long. As for David Emerson, the first Canadian MP to cross the floor after this election and become Minister of International Trade in the political party which he had so vociferously opposed before the election, Hebert dismissed him by saying, “He is very goal oriented.”
The softwood lumber dispute was also raised by Hbert. She noted that Harper’s political priorities would be to ensure a quick win on the issue, which is considerably pertinent as softwood is also harvested for use in the production of paper.
Also on the agenda were the introduction of the 2006 Executive Council members and the presentations of the John S. Bates Memorial Gold Medal and the Honorary Life Membership awards.
“Our industry is made up of trees, paper and complicated processes,” said Scott Travers. “But what made it tick is you, the people.”
The John S. Bates Memorial Gold Medal is PAPTAC’s premiere award and was instituted to recognize the contribution of its founder, and first chairman, Dr. John S. Bates. “Dr. John S. Bates was a believer in lifelong learning,” said Travers. “We honour people that follow in his footsteps.” The Medal was presented to Barbara van Lierop in recognition of her long-term scientific and technological contributions to the pulp and paper industry as the principal scientist in the chemical pulping program at Paprican.
Richard Foucault received the Honorary Life Membership award for his outstanding contribution to the industry as a former PAPTAC chairman and E.B. Eddy Forest Products employee. His father and grandfather both retired from Domtar and his son Jeremie presently works for Tembec as an instrumentation technician. “With four generations in the same industry,” said Travers, “this paper industry certainly does get in the blood.”
Travers, President and COO of Minas Basin Pulp and Power Company Limited, was determined to promote how PAPTAC is a return on investment. “The Canadian industry is on the road to recovery,” he said, noting there were 7,500 individual participants at PaperWeek 2006, “and Canada continues to be the world’s largest exporter of pulp, paper and wood products.”
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