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Your 2011 CAFCE Atlantic Conference Planning Committee are very pleased to welcome the following keynote speakers:

  • Dr. Wilfred Zerbe, Dean, Faculty of Business Administration, Memorial University
  • Mr. Larry Iles, Thompson Rivers University
  • Ms. Cathy Bennett, Owner/Operator, Bennett's Restaurants
  • Dr. Robert Shea, Dean, Student Affairs and Services, Memorial University
  • Dr. Ray Gosine, Associate Vice-President, Research, Memorial University

Dr. Wilfred Zerbe:

Wilfred J. Zerbe is Professor of Organizational Behavior and Dean of the Faculty of Business Administration at Memorial University of Newfoundland. His research interests focus on emotions in organizations, organizational research methods, service sector management, business ethics, and leadership. His publications have appeared in books and journals including The Academy of Management Review, Industrial and Labour Relations Review, Canadian Journal of Administrative Sciences, Journal of Business Research, Journal of Psychology, Journal of Services Marketing, and Journal of Research in Higher Education. Prior to joining Memorial University he was on faculty with the Haskayne School of Business at the University of Calgary, where he held positions as Associate Dean (MBA), and Associate Dean (Executive Education). Dr. Zerbe received his Ph.D. from the University of British Columbia in Commerce and Business Administration and holds Bachelors and Masters degrees in Psychology.


Mr. Larry Iles:

Larry Iles is the Chairperson for the Career Education Department at Thompson Rivers University, Kamloops, British Columbia. He has been involved with Co-operative Education for over 14 years as a Career Counsellor, Co-op Coordinator, Departmental Chairperson and is the former President of the Association of Co-operative Education BC/Yukon.

He currently sits on the Canadian Association for Cooperative Education (CAFCE) and Association for Cooperative Education, BC/Yukon (ACE) Research Committees and is part of a research team that is investigating the relationship between co-op involvement and post-secondary academic engagement.

Mr. Iles is also involved in research investigating the role of gender in co-operative education and how GPA impacts students success with the Co-op model. Throughout Mr. Iles' career, he has had the opportunity to work with students who are focusing their career choices. It is his firm belief that co-operative education is a transformative educational experience for students. It is the coordinators' role to assist in this transformation.


Ms. Cathy Bennett:

Cathy Bennett is the CEO and owner of the Bennett Group of Companies. This group includes Bennett Restaurants, which holds the franchise for the nine St. John's, NL area McDonald's Restaurants as well as a number of other small businesses including BGI, a construction and commercial property company.

Having joined the McDonald's Team at age 16, Cathy quickly climbed the corporate ladder. In 1999, she became a Joint Venture Partner with McDonald's Bennett Restaurants and operates nine restaurants, employing over 350 employees.

As part of her McDonald's career, she sat on the McDonald's National Marketing Forum and the McDonald's National Business Forum. Both of these organizations are the Operator Leadership teams for the Canadian System. As well, Cathy served as Chairperson of the McDonald's National Technology Board, a group that makes the strategic decisions regarding technology inside the Canadian McDonald's Restaurants system.

In 2007, Cathy was successful in negotiating a buy-out of McDonald's Canada's interest in Bennett Restaurants and became the sole owner of Bennett Restaurants.

Over the last ten years Cathy has been very involved as a community volunteer serving as President of the St. John's Board of Trade and Chairperson of St. John's Clean and Beautiful, just to name a few.

Her current portfolio includes:
- Governor, Atlantic Provinces Economic Council Director
- Canadian Chamber of Commerce Director
- Business Coalition of Newfoundland and Labrador
- Vice Chair Ronald McDonald House NL

Additionally, Cathy also serves on the Board of Directors for Newfoundland & Labrador Hydro, the Bull Arm Corporation as well as NALCOR Energy and Bell Aliant.

Cathy and her husband Doug reside in St. John's with their two children, Cameron and Liam.


Dr. Robert Shea:

Dr. Rob Shea is Dean, Pro Tempore of Student Affairs and Services at Memorial University, an avid Dr. Seuss fan and assistant professor in the Faculty of Education, passionately involved in the education of future adult and post secondary leaders. Armed with an arsenal of degrees in political science, social work, education and a doctorate in higher education leadership; his career has taken him from the front lines of teaching youth with multiple barriers, to the board rooms of national and international non-profits, and now Dean, Pro Tempore of the very same department where he volunteered during his own post secondary journey. Rob has served as president of 4 national organizations and been involved in the leadership of over 7 others at the national, provincial and regional levels.

As a well-known and much sought-after professor and adult learning facilitator, Rob has worked with provincial and national corporations on topics such as employee retention, career development, mentoring, employee recruitment and generational challenges in the workplace.

Rob's research focus includes work integrated learning, career development, post secondary student retention and persistence, and teaching and learning in universities and colleges. He is the founding editor of the Canadian Journal of Career Development; a free journal which embraces an open access approach, and has over 2100 individual subscribers. He is also the co-author of a new book to be released in 2011, entitled A Multi-Sectoral Approach to Career Development: A Decade of Canadian Research.

He brings an intense energy, enthusiasm and passion to all his endeavors (and has been known to deliver a speech or two wearing a hat not unlike that made famous by a certain cat), and as a result has received numerous local and national awards; including the Governor Generals Caring Canadian Award, the Queens Golden Jubilee Medal for outstanding community service and contributions to higher education, the Canadian Association of College and University Student Services Highest Award of Honour for contributions to student services and higher education and the St. John's Citizen of the Year Award. In 2010 the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers established the Rob Shea Research Award to highlight outstanding contributions to post secondary career and recruitment research in Canada.


Dr. Ray Gosine:

Following completion of an undergraduate degree (co-op) in Electrical Engineering at Memorial University of Newfoundland, Dr. Gosine attended Cambridge University in England where he completed a Ph.D. in robotics.

Subsequently he held teaching and research positions at Cambridge University, the University of British Columbia (UBC) and Memorial University of Newfoundland. These appointments included an NSERC Chair in Industrial Automation at UBC and the J.I. Clark of Intelligent Systems for Operations in Harsh Environments at Memorial University. He is currently Associate Vice-President (Research) at Memorial University, and he is also Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and J.I. Clark Chair.

Dr. Gosine's research is in the areas of telerobotics, machine vision and pattern recognition for applications in the resource industries (i.e. mining, oil & gas, aquaculture and fisheries, and forestry). His teaching activities have covered a range of electrical and mechanical engineering topics including of electric circuit concepts, kinematics and dynamics, robotics and engineering design projects. Dr. Gosine has also taught graduate courses in the area of robotics and automation, computer vision and adaptive pattern recognition.

From August 2002 – September 2003 Dr. Gosine was the Interim Associate Dean (Graduate Studies and Research) in the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science at Memorial University. Dr. Gosine became Dean of Engineering at Memorial University in October 2003 and served in this capacity until March 2008 when he was appointed Acting Associate Vice-President (Research). From October 2008 – September 2010 Dr. Gosine served as Vice-President (Research), Pro Tempore.

Dr. Gosine is currently the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Newfoundland and Labrador (PEG-NL). He serves on the Board of Directors for a number of organizations and companies involved research and technology development. He also serves on the Boards of several community organizations.