Accounting | The Profession

6 sessions not to miss at The ONE National Conference

With unique and thought-provoking keynotes and speakers, this year’s event in Montreal will have something for every CPA

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People networking and mingling at The ONE 2019 conferenceThe ONE conference will offer opportunities for CPAs to build their skills, network with industry professionals and gain insights from noteworthy speakers (

It’s time to prepare for the biggest event of the year. CPA Canada’s The ONE National Conference returns September 23-24 in Montreal with a theme of innovation for sustainability. As the event continues to evolve and grow, it has become a must-attend for CPAs, says Jeanette Hill, lead principal, professional programs, for CPA Canada (see Top 10 reasons to attend The ONE). 

“This is our first year with a dedicated technology track to give CPAs the most up-to-date information on emerging technologies, trends and with more room in our agenda to cover elements of constant digital change,” she says.

This will also be the first time The ONE will be held in Quebec, and special attention was given to language accessibility, with sessions in English and French, along with bilingual simultaneous translation. In addition, the conference will offer opportunities for CPAs to build their skills, network with industry professionals and gain insights from noteworthy speakers. 

“There really is something for every role, whether you work in tax, audit or industry,” adds Hill. “I think members will be very impressed at the vast selection on the agenda and the quality of all sessions.”

Here are six recommended sessions to attend at this year’s conference.

1) Fraud – Financial Crime: Current Trends and Forecasts, Are You Prepared?

Corey Anne Bloom, forensics - Eastern Canada leader, MNP LLP
Think you’re safe from financial crime? In the digital age, with more ways than ever to perpetrate fraud, no company or individual is safe. While fraud awareness is on the rise, a majority of Canadians are still concerned about both organizational fraud or personal fraud. This session will explore how modern financial professionals need to gain a better understanding of current and future fraud trends.

Monday, 11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. (French)
Tuesday, 1:35 p.m. – 2:35 p.m. (English)

2) AI for Prediction 

Erin Kelly, president and CEO of Advanced Symbolics
Predictive research requires the processing of vast amounts of data in near real time, an impossible feat without the advanced computing power of artificial intelligence. Along with this ability to do accurate predictive research, enterprises can now compute what-if scenarios that allow company planners to optimize all operations of the organization, from finance to operations to sales and marketing to HR. This presentation is a hands-on look at specific case studies where AI was used to increase sales and efficiencies, detect financial fraud and optimize performance.

Monday, 2:10 p.m. – 3:10 p.m. (English)
Tuesday, 1:35 p.m. – 2:35 p.m. (French)

3) Visualize your Path to the C-Suite

Many mid- and senior-level financial leaders aspire, at some point in their careers, to become CFOs or gain access to top management level. However, the journey to senior management can be challenging, even gruelling, and getting advice from those who have succeeded can make all the difference. This session is an opportunity to hear from top-level executives and find out more about the challenges ahead, the skills you need to acquire, the role mentors play and more. The English panellists are Fred Burke, executive consultant, Allied Track Services Inc.; Arun Thangaraj, assistant deputy minister and chief financial officer, Global Affairs Canada; Darlene Dasent, vice-president and CFO, University Health Network; and Zachary Waxman, CFO, Everest Wholesale. The French panellists are Hadia Amrane, manager, global transaction banking, Bombardier, corporate treasury; Graziella Khawand, CFO of Yellow Group Inc., a Quebec-based footwear retail company founded in 1916; Pierre Lafontaine, Vice-Président, Taxation, Bombardier Inc.; and Marie-Noël Grenier, president, Jambette.

Tuesday, 11:10 a.m. – 12:10 p.m. (separate sessions in both English and French) 

4) Delivering Virtual CPA Services – A Canadian ‘How-to’

In this session, attendees will learn how CPAs can leverage technology to transform their client service, as well as how to build and run a virtual firm. Speakers include Chad Davis, co-founder and partner at LiveCA LLP, as well as Jules Hawkins and Allison Hawkins, founding partners of Hawkins & Co. Accounting.

Tuesday, 1:35 p.m. – 2:35 p.m. (bilingual simultaneous translation)

5) The Risky Business of Tax

This panel discussion—featuring Bruce Ball, CPA Canada’s vice-president of taxation, and Netta Genua, claims manager, CPA Professional Liability Plan Inc.—will highlight common tax errors that lead to professional liability claims and provide strategies to mitigate the risk. The French session will feature Stephanie Abinakle, claims examiner, CPA Professional Liability Plan Inc., and Daniel Gosselin, market lead partner, tax-province of Quebec, KPMG.

Tuesday, 1:35 p.m. – 2:35 p.m. (separate sessions in both English and French)

6) Keynote address: Driving Innovation in Your Organization: Embracing a Coaching Mindset

Jennifer Gervès-Keen, corporate executive coach and founder of JGK Consulting 
Organizations are turning towards internal coaching structures to not only drive innovation, but also address sustainability, keeping in theme of this year’s conference. This idea of peer-to-peer coaching includes people from different departments coming together to talk about what’s going on in the organization. The session will help participants learn how the role of an external executive coach could be used to support the entire organization while gaining a deeper understanding of the impact of creating a coaching culture in the workplace.

Tuesday, 3 p.m. – 4 p.m. (bilingual simultaneous translation)


From where to relax or get a culture fix, here are a few things you can do while you’re in Montreal. And don’t forget about other can’t-miss events for accountants, with CPA Canada’s list of other cutting-edge conferences this fall.