The 2017 Equestrian Canada (EC) Annual General Meeting of Members (AGM) took place on Sept. 25, 2017, with the current and incoming EC Board of Directors and 27 EC Voting Members attending via web conference, and the community invited to tune in through Facebook livestream.

The AGM agenda included four items of business, as well as reports from the Audit Committee and the Nominating Committee.

Approval of Agenda & Adoption of Minutes

After Cara Whitham (Category A) motioned to approve the agenda, with Dr. Wayne Burwash (Category C) as a seconder, Geri Sweet (Category B) followed with the motion to approve the adoption of the minutes from the 2016 AGM, which was seconded by Sue Ockendon (Category C).

Audit Committee Report

Doug Orr, EC Board Member and Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee, kicked things off with an overview of the Report of the Audit Committee.

“We received from the auditor on Aug. 25 a draft copy of the Auditor’s Report and the Audited Financial Statements,” Orr stated during the meeting. “We called a meeting of the EC Finance and Audit Committee on Aug. 29 and received the report from Kirsten Giles of KPMG.”

“The first comment that we received was that both the CEO and the Controller were particularly commended, as well as all of the financial and administrative staff, for the work they did to prepare documents for the audit,” said Orr. “They were complimented on their openness and cooperation, and their ability to provide data as it was required.”

Orr continued, “As a committee, we met to go over the report from KPMG, and we had four recommendations that we put forward to the Board. The first recommendation entails that it is absolutely imperative and essential that our month-end and quarterly financial reporting be brought up to date. I can report that the financial team is working literally overtime, seven days a week in some cases, to try to get us up to speed. And that is a priority for our financial team.”

The full Finance and Audit Committee Report can be read here.

Financial Statements

The next agenda item was the Acceptance of the 2016-17 EC Financial Statements.

In reference to the financial statements, EC President and AGM Chair, Peggy Hambly began the meeting by stating, “On behalf of the EC Board, I apologize for the lateness of sending out the Audited Financial Statements, because of circumstances beyond our control – including the departure of the CEO, as announced earlier today. We will be spending a little more time on the financials than we normally would in order to ensure people are not negatively impacted by the lateness in delivery.”

Following an in-depth discussion, Mark Nelson (Category B) made a motion to defer the consideration by the EC Voting Members of the financial statements to Oct. 12, 2017 to fulfill the 21-day requirement by the Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act (CNCA). The motion was seconded by Adrienne Smith (Category B), and was carried following a vote that saw 12 in favour and 11 opposed.

Due to this motion, the first meeting of the incoming EC Board of Directors will also be delayed, with the new date to be confirmed shortly.

To view the 2016-17 Audited Financial Statements, click here.

Appointment of the Auditors

Regarding the appointment of the Auditors for 2017-18, Orr recommended EC remain with KPMG. The motion was made by Sweet, and seconded by Gord McKenzie (Category B). None were opposed, and the motion was carried.

EC By-Laws Motion

As indicated in the AGM Agenda under other business, the following motion was put forward regarding the EC By-laws:

Motion to remove the word ‘officer’ from Article 4, item 4.25 Independence in the By-laws.

BE IT RESOLVED THAT the amendment to the by-laws approved by the Board of Directors on August 21, 2017, amending Section 4.25 to remove the word “officer” in two places as set out below, be and is hereby sanctioned, ratified and approved.


4.25 Independence – Other than the Chief Executive Officer, an Officer or Director may not be an employee of EQUINE CANADA or an employee, officer or paid contractor of any Recognized Affiliate Organization. Any Director or Officer elected or appointed who is an employee of EQUINE CANADA or an employee, officer or paid contractor of any Recognized Affiliate Organization, must resign such position within thirty (30) days of being elected or appointed as a Director or Officer, failing which such Director or Officer shall be deemed to have resigned as a Director or Officer, as applicable, of EQUINE CANADA.

David Brent (Category C) made the motion to approve, and Michel Lapierre (Category A) was the seconder. None were opposed, and the motion was carried.

EC Nominating Committee Report

EC Board member and Chair of the Nominating Committee, Dominique Chagnon provided a synopsis of her report regarding the 2017 EC Board of Directors Election.

Some of the key points from the Report that Chagnon touched on included:

  • The system that we are using is very interesting. It provides us with the possibility of ranking all candidates, which not everyone was in favour of. I think the system is really fair and democratic.
  • I was quite surprised by the way the voting went from each category. I made a note in the Report stating that the Voting Members are representing their categories, so it’s surprising to see that there was no trend or consensus within any of the categories. We need to recognize as an organization that we have more work to do there. The voting members need to be representing their category, and should have some consensus in their voting.
  • I was very comfortable with putting out the points for every candidate. I think there was a need to do so, even if it wasn’t appreciated by everyone. We live in a democracy; I think it’s important for everyone to know the results of an election, and the points are part of it.

To view the full Nominating Committee Report, click here.

Watch the Full Recording of the 2017 EC AGM

The AGM was recorded and streamed live on EC’s Facebook page, and the full video is available below and at