VIP 30-Year Anniversary

It is was our distinct privilege to welcome over 150 members and invited guests to our 30 Year-Anniversary on Tuesday 7 May 2024, as we celebrated festivities over fine food, great music, networking with attendees from across the country and the African continent.

With messages from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Minister Mary Ng and Premier Doug Ford - among others - the Chamber's contribution to Canada was underscored, as we prepare for the next 30 years ahead to further accelerate trade and investment.

As members arrived, the historic ballroom of the National Club was adorned with portraits of past distinguished speakers - commemorating addresses by leaders over the past three decades, who have included world-leading CEOs, Heads of State and captains of industry.

Godefroy Stanislas TSHIMANGA WA MUNTUABO (right) Director General of INPP, a public establishment of the Congolese State - specializing in organization and information systems - is joined by ARSP and DRC members of The Canada-Africa Chamber.

This year our 30th Anniversary keynote address was delivered by Mr. Joe Lombard, Vice-Chairman of Hatch, introduced by the Chamber's Past President, Bruce Shapiro.

Minister Mary Ng thanked Chamber leaders for their contribution in remarks from her Ministerial Office in Ottawa

Paula Caldwell St-Onge, Chair of the Board, opened the 30th Anniversary, underscoring this year's extensive programming - including but not limited to events in Toronto, Ottawa and Sudbury in Canada, as well as Nairobi, Kenya; Kolwezi, Democratic Republic of Congo; Harare, Zimbabwe and Cape Town, South Africa - in addition to our inaugural upcoming Canada-US Forum for African Partnerships in Washington, DC. Read the full address here.

Mr. Gabriel Tshitende, founder and CEO of Elephant Trade-Services DRC, our Headline Sponsor, delivered the official welcome - which included an invitation to all to the Democratic Republic of Congo. With over 1000 employees and multiple projects, Elephant Trade-Services' February 2025 Investment Mission. The Chamber was delighted announce Elephant Trade-Services DRC will continue as headline sponsor for 2025.

Founding Chair of the Chamber, Mr. Stephen Pinucs of Goodmans LLP, delivered the closing remarks and was commended for his ceaseless support from the outset of the organization's existence.  

H.E. Rosine ENGONE EP OLIVEIRA, Acting High Commissioner of Gabon with the Chamber's Vice President, Chair and President (left) and members of the DRC Delegation to our 30th Anniversary (right)

View more photos from the evening

Awards Ceremony

In recognition of their incredible support, four leading corporate members were recipients of our Major Supporter Awards, with a fifth due to be awarded in Zimbabwe later this year. Board Chair, Paula Caldwell St-Onge, Board Director Pierre Boivin and Vice President Ateau Zola, were pleased to present the awards:

  • Goodmans LLP - received by Stephen Pincus (Partner)
  • MineAfrica Inc - received by Wayne Floreani (President) Bruce Shapiro (co-founder)
  • Hatch - received by Joe Lombard (Vice Chair)
  • Elephant Trade Services DRC- received by Gabriel Tshitende (Founder and CEO)

Wayne Floreani (MineAfrica Inc), Pierre Boivin (Board Member), Stephen Pincus (Founding Chair), Paula Caldwell St-Onge (Board Chair), Gabriel Tshitende (Elephant Trade-Services DRC) and Joe Lombard (Vice Chair, Hatch)

All award-recipients were invited to remain on stage, to receive - on behalf of the entire Chamber - Premier Doug Ford's plaque, in turn shared behalf of the Government of Ontario: "Over the years the dedication and hard work of the fine men and women who have built this organization have helped support local business and contributed to keeping our provincial economy strong and prosperous.''  

Karen Woolcock, CEO of KY Concierge, the Chamber's Senior Associate for In-Bound delegations, played a key role in the success of the evening, together members of the team from her company.

Live performance by Lorraine Klaasen!

Daughter of the late Thandi Karsten, Nelson Mandela’s favourite artist, Lorriane Klaasen has continued her mother’s legacy and joined us once again in Toronto, fresh from her tour on the continent and in Jamaica.

For members traveling to Canada, as well as those in-country already, immediately following our 30-Year Anniversary event, all were warmly invited to join us for a site visit program to Sudbury, currently underway from 8-11 May 2024.

As a not-for-profit, our events generate revenue that cross-subsidizes our operations, including membership fees and programming open to all at no cost. Thanks to our generous sponsors, we are able to welcome thousands of participants from all over Canada and African markets.   

Read the 2023 Report on our Impact!

30-Year Anniversary VIP Reception Patron & Chamber Headline Sponsor

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