AGILITY Innovation Series to feature business leaders, experts

The University of Lethbridge’s new experiential learning program, AGILITY, is off and running this fall and with it comes a new speaker series that will give students the opportunity to learn from renowned business leaders and industry experts.

“Our goal is to provide opportunities for our students to engage with people whose entrepreneurial ambition has pushed innovation in the province and across the country,” says Dr. Lesley Brown, Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President (Academic), who is leading the establishment of the AGILITY program.

The AGILITY Innovation Series features a highly engaging set of lectures and workshops that showcase industry experts with a track record of innovation and entrepreneurship across a range of sectors, including agribusiness and agri-tech, energy, small and family-owned businesses and public service.

“Through this series, we will be bringing in some of the leading innovators and entrepreneurs in the province who have started and grown very successful businesses,” says Anil Pereira (BMgt ’87), U of L alumnus and advisor to the AGILITY program. “Their experiences provide invaluable learning opportunities for our students.”

Skyridge Capital Corporation CEO Steve Cloutier will kick off the series with presentations at both the U of L’s Calgary and Lethbridge campuses respectively, October 27 and 28, 2015.

Cloutier is an entrepreneur with 30 years of experience in the law, investment and upstream oil and gas industries. After relocating to Calgary, Cloutier began his career in oil and gas, ultimately participating in the start-up of seven oil and gas companies, leading teams of up to 200 employees. He has more than $2 billion of direct experience in mergers, acquisitions and divestitures.

On Tuesday, Oct. 27, Cloutier will be at the University’s Calgary location on the campus of Bow Valley College presenting a talk entitled From Liberal Arts BA to Energy Startup CEO: Lessons for Tomorrow’s Entrepreneur. The presentation runs from 5 to 7 p.m.

On Wednesday, Oct. 28, Cloutier will make his presentation to students on the Lethbridge campus, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Markin Hall Atrium.

The AGILITY Innovation Series is free and open to everyone but seating is limited and attendees must register in advance. For more information on the series and to register for Steve Cloutier’s events in both Calgary and Lethbridge, visit the AGILITY website (

“Steve Cloutier is an amazingly skilled businessperson and entrepreneur who will walk students through his own case studies, increasing their understanding of the skills and steps needed to launch a successful startup enterprise,” says Pereira. “This is a really great opportunity for students to learn how to shape their skillset, expand their vision and engage in a dialogue with a highly successful and experienced entrepreneur.”

Pereira will also play a key part in the opening of the AGILITY Innovation Series, offering workshops in Lethbridge in advance of Cloutier’s presentations. Pereira will demonstrate 3D virtual reality experiences during a workshop entitled The Virtual Reality Works of Félix & Paul Studios at 2:30 p.m. on Oct. 27 and 10:30 a.m. on October 28.

“We are really excited to be highlighting innovations in agriculture and agribusiness as a theme for many of the upcoming talks and workshops in the 2015-16 AGILITY Innovation Series,” says Brown, who credits a gift from Mr. Cor Van Raay of Cor Van Raay Farms for supporting many of these initiatives.

In November, Chris Perry, president of CKP Farms Ltd. and Grow the Energy Circle Ltd., will present along with Harold Perry, president of Perry Quest Ltd. Subsequent sessions will be held in January, February and March 2016.

The format of each session will include a half-hour mix and mingle with free refreshments, followed by a 45-minute talk and conclude with a 30-minute open question-and-answer period.

“We want to engage our attendees as much as possible, to really bring them into the presentations and allow them to get the most out of the sessions,” says Pereira.

AGILITY Innovation Series (

- Steve Cloutier, CEO, Skyridge Capital Corporation
From Liberal Arts BA to Energy Start-up CEO – Lessons for Tomorrow’s Entrepreneur
October 27, 2015, 5 p.m. (Calgary) and October 28, 2015, 11 a.m. (Lethbridge)

- Anil Pereira, Startup Advisor
Virtual Reality Works of Félix & Paul Studios
October 27, 2015, 2:30 p.m. and October 28, 2015, 10:30 a.m. (Lethbridge)

- Chris Perry, President of CKP Farms Ltd. and Grow the Energy Circle Ltd., and Harold Perry, President of Perry Quest Ltd.
Integrating Environmental Stewardship and Innovative Technology into Agriculture
November 2015

- Paul Oss, Public Affairs Officer, Ministry of Innovation and Advanced Education, Province of Alberta
Keeping Pace with Technological Change
January 2016

- Tom Burke, Senior Investment Advisor, Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management
Canadian Agriculture in the 21st Century: Technology, Finance, and Sustainability (roundtable discussion with agribusiness and agri-tech leaders)
February 2016

- Danny Martin, Director Business Development, Engenium Chemicals
March 2016

- Chris Perry, President of CKP Farms Ltd. and Grow the Energy Circle Ltd., and Harold Perry, President of Perry Quest Ltd.
How CKP Farms Ltd Integrates Environmental Stewardship and Innovative Technology into Agriculture
March 2016