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Rick Frost, CEO, The Winnipeg Foundation

Rick Frost is the CEO of The Winnipeg Foundation.
Community Foundations of Canada Conference 2013, 700 delegates.

How were you involved in bringing this annual conference to Winnipeg?
When Community Foundations of Canada starts planning for its biennial conference, it looks to the Foundations whose cities have the capacity and ability to host more than 500 delegates. We knew Winnipeg could easily handle this size of gathering. For The Winnipeg Foundation, as Canada's first community foundation, it was a great opportunity to bring our colleagues together at the birthplace of our country's community foundation movement—it was a natural fit.

What would you see as the major benefits to holding the conference in Winnipeg?
Winnipeg's central location made it very accessible and easy for delegates coming from across Canada and the continent to get to. It was our opportunity as a community to showcase all the good work that has been going on in Winnipeg in the past decade, and share some of the innovative community projects and ideas that are coming to fruition in our city. From the world-class Canadian Museum for Human Rights to the refurbishment of Assiniboine Park, Winnipeg has so much to be proud of and to share with the rest of the country.

What did you do to help influence decision makers to help bring this conference?
As an active member of Community Foundations of Canada, The Winnipeg Foundation was proud to share all the benefits our city could offer to such a large gathering over the four days. From Winnipeg's vibrant arts and cultural activities to its"big small-town" welcome, and the expertise of so many talented organizations—like Tourism Winnipeg—we knew we could deliver a first-rate experience for delegates, many who had never been to Winnipeg before.

What does it mean to you to help bring this conference to Winnipeg?
To have our colleagues here in early June provided the absolute best of what our city has to offer. From the conference's opening grand entry with the dozens of aboriginal jingle dancers, to our host event at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, to celebrating the Winnipeg Art Gallery's 100th anniversary with Canada's Governor General were all very memorable parts of our conference experience. So many of our visitors are amazed and surprised at all there is to do and see in Winnipeg.

What advice do you have for other potential influencers in the city? Why would you suggest they get involved to help bring a meeting or convention to Winnipeg?
I would encourage every organization or corporation that is based in the city and is part of a conference or national meeting to promote the benefits of holding it here in Winnipeg. We have the resources, the infrastructure and the expertise locally to deliver the highest calibre of events. Our city is full of talented people who go the extra mile to ensure visitors leave with an amazing Winnipeg experience.

Call Virginie De Visscher at Tourism Winnipeg 204 954-1984 for information on how you can be a leader and use your influence to grow Winnipeg's tourism economy.