About the Economic Club of Canada

Canada’s Podium of Record

In just 15 years, The Economic Club of Canada has become the highest profile and most respected platform for non-partisan dialogue, discussion, insight, exchange and opinion amongst the world’s most notable influencers and thought leaders.

The Economic Club of Canada is regarded as one of the world’s most sought-after forums for such leaders as former U.S. President Bill Clinton, former President of France Francois Holland, U.S. Presidential candidate John McCain, former Chairman of the U.S. Fed Ben Bernanke, and Economist Paul Krugman, amongst many others, to address the most topical, important and relevant issues of the day.

Providing accessibility to our speakers and the advantage of posing direct and unfiltered questions, the more than 100 Economic Club of Canada events each year also provide the ultimate power networking opportunity, as its audiences are drawn from the most senior and influential levels of business, industry and government.

The Economic Club of Canada team is lean, nimble and flexible, allowing it to stage events that address breaking news and emerging business issues at a moment’s notice.

Powerful, respected, influential and leading. The cornerstones that describe The Economic Club of Canada, its speakers…and its audiences.

Rhiannon Traill

President & CEO

Rhiannon Traill is Owner, President and CEO of The Economic Club of Canada and recognized as one of the most accomplished business influencers in Canada, hosting more than 100 events per year featuring world leaders from politics, industry, the arts and culture discussing the most important issues of the day.

A graduate of Ryerson University, Rhiannon joined The Economic Club in 2008 and became Owner, President and CEO in 2011. In 2013 and 2015 Rhiannon was named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Business by the Women’s Executive Network in the Telus Future Leaders and the Sun Life Trailblazers & Trendsetters categories. In 2014, Rhiannon was elected to Ryerson University’s Board of Governors, where she is responsible for the governance of the university, control of its property and revenues and the conduct of its business and affairs. In 2016 she was named one of Canada’s Change Agents by Canadian Business Magazine. Rhiannon has also served on the Toronto committee for the Canadian Blood Services Campaign for All Canadians, and she currently serves as a member of the Council of Champions for the national not for profit, Children First.

In 2012, Rhiannon launched the Annual Voice of Hope Awards in Ottawa, recognizing outstanding humanitarians who have dedicated their lives to the equality of women and children around the globe.

She is currently a regular panelist on the “Moore in the Morning” Roundtable segment, offering her opinions on the major news stories of the week, and airing every Thursday morning at 8:50 am on Newstalk 1010 Radio.

Rhiannon is passionate about giving a voice and influence to Canadian youth in major national discussions and decisions. To that end in 2011, she conceived and founded the not for profit Junior Economic Club of Canada, designed to supply the tools and programs to inspire Canadian youth to become financially literate, civically engaged and socially responsible. To date, more than 35,000 students from across Canada have engaged in the Junior Economic Club of Canada’s six programming offerings and the Club has granted more than $100,000 in academic scholarships.

Rhiannon is also a runner, golfer, singer and she and her husband are the proud parents of two young boys.

Natasha Morano

Vice President

Natasha Hope Morano is Vice President of the Economic Club of Canada. She resides in Ottawa. Ms. Morano has been instrumental in increasing the Economic Club’s profile; bringing over 200 key policy makers and business leaders to the Economic Club’s podium to make major keynote addresses. In January 2012, Natasha Morano was named Executive Director of the Club and was selected to open the Economic Club of Canada's first satellite office in Ottawa. Under Ms. Morano’s stewardship the Economic Club has become the main platform for key announcements and policy discussions in the nation’s capital. Ms. Morano is responsible for overseeing all operations in Ottawa, as well as directing and overseeing national and international events. Ms. Morano was named Vice President in April 2013 and expanded the Economic Club’s reach in 2014 to include events in Western Canada.

Ms. Morano also played a vital role developing the Jr. Economic Club of Canada, an off-shoot organization designed to inspire Canadian youth about the importance of financial literacy. In 2012 Ms. Morano founded The Voice of Hope Humanitarian Awards Gala. This marquee event is the first human rights gala in Canada’s capital created to honour exceptional human rights advocates from across the globe.

Natasha’s passion for humanitarianism compelled her to recently complete the Private Schools Principal certification at York University, solidifying her resolve to pursue education reform. In 2015, Natasha founded the Gadfly Academy, an educational institution, promoting the importance of critical thinking, which she plans to open in the near future. Natasha’s philanthropy has been widely recognized. Her story is published in “Making it in High Heels 4: Women of Philanthropy and Charity.” Natasha joined the President & CEO Advisory Council of Canada World Youth, where her passion for promoting critical thinking among youth is nurtured and applied.

Ms. Morano focuses on philanthropic practices in the city by donating excess food from events to various shelters in Ottawa and has worked with the Joy Smith Foundation in Ottawa to raise the awareness of the severity of human trafficking. Natasha is active in her community and currently sits on the operations committee for the Innovation Centre at Bayview Yards wherein she advises the Board of Directors on recommendations for the operations of the soon to be opened Innovation Centre. Miss Morano is an avid runner and has participated in several Ottawa race weekend events.

She completed her undergraduate Honours Degree at the University of Toronto with a double major in Political Science and English, and minor in Philosophy. She completed her MA in Political Science at Wilfrid Laurier University and Waterloo University. Her research is focused primarily on the influence the media plays in shaping public policy and opinion regarding terrorism. She is widely recognized for her research, such as: "Media Interference: The Effects of Framing the 'Toronto 18' Terrorists Arrests," and upon request donated her database to LISPOP (Laurier Institute for the Study for Public Opinion and Policy). She has presented this research across Canada and the United States. Natasha has also completed studies in Spanish.

Not only is Natasha an academic, she is also a seasoned equestrian show jumper. She won first for Canada in 2001 and has future hopes of pursuing her passion for horses. Most recently Natasha was nominated for Businesswoman of the Year and has become a mentor for many young women in the community.

Kara Merpaw

Kara Merpaw

Director of Communications

Kara is The EC's Director of Communications. She studied political science and gender studies at Western University and completed a postgraduate certificate in public relations at Humber College in Toronto. Before joining the Economic Club in 2013, she gained communications experience at a Canadian financial institution and a tech-focused public relations agency.

In her time at The EC, Kara has managed countless high-profile events and has taken particular pride in improving the overall member experience. For the year ahead, she has committed herself to connecting post-secondary students and new graduates with The EC community.

Outside of work, Kara enjoys travelling, reading and trying new restaurants around Toronto.

Sophie LaPointe

Sophie LaPointe

Director of Operations

Prior to joining the Economic Club of Canada in August 2015, Sophie worked as an event apprentice for the Arthritis Society, working on projects such as the "All-in for Arthritis Poker Gala", the organization's largest fundraising gala of the year.

Sophie graduated from the Special Event Planning and Management program at George Brown College in April of 2015. During her studies, she lead several teams through the planning and execution process of theme-oriented fundraising events and was awarded the GBC Scholarship for Excellence in Leadership. She also took on the role as a Peer Leader in program tutoring sessions. Sophie found a special interest in her public speaking opportunities during her time at George Brown and has worked to incorporate this into her leadership skills.

Sophie enjoys travelling, reading and all that is involved with the performing arts.

Emily Peters

Emily Peters

Senior Events Coordinator

Emily is a Senior Events Coordinator at the Economic Club of Canada in the Toronto office. She has previously worked at a local PR firm and the Hockey Hall of Fame. At Wilfrid Laurier University, Emily received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Honours Communications, with a minor in Cultural Studies. During her studies, she became increasingly interested in the world’s vast cultures and religions, finding that to be the main focus of her electives.

Emily is truly passionate about her involvement with the Junior Economic Club of Canada.

In her free time, she enjoys practicing yoga & meditation, cooking, going to concerts and watching sports.

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