May saw the key celebration of the vibrancy of Canadian evaluation: the annual CES Conference. Thanks to the leadership of the Société québécoise d'évaluation de programme under President Olivier Sossa, and the energy, inventiveness, and commitment of an army of volunteers led by Natalie Kishchuk and Johann Jacob. Added to the generosity of literally hundreds of keynote speakers and presenters, the Conference was a resounding success (I admit that we are waiting for the evaluative feedback from delegates yet these are my predictions). I used two empirical indicators to gauge the results of the Conference – smiles and conversations – and I saw a high dose of both! Conference presentations and video footage will be posted on the CES Web site soon; keep your eyes open. Also get ready for the 2016 Conference in St.John's, Newfoundland-and-Labrador, from June 5 to 8 next year.
Our International Year of Evaluation Conference was an opportunity for contacts with evaluators from around the world. We had the privilege of delegates from 23 countries as well as the presence of 10 Presidents of national, regional, and international evaluation organizations. Seven foreign evaluators won conference awards, and international keynote speakers inspired us with stories and connections with our Canadian context. The Conference also saw the launch of the French-Speaking Emergent Evaluator Network that CES is supporting financially and in kind.
Interest continues in Canada’s experience in professionalization of evaluation. The recourse to a credential or certification program is one solution among others to the professionalization challenge; in this regard, the CES experience is a useful pilot for other evaluation societies and organizations. Earlier in May, I had the pleasure of presenting the CES Professional Designations Program and the Credentialed Evaluator designation to senior managers of the Independent Evaluation Group of the World Bank and to the Results Measurement and Evidence Stream of the World Bank Group. This was a contribution to the World Bank reflection on the professionalization of evaluation practice. Departing Vice-President Janet Ivory (thank you for your commitment, Janet) also wrote an article for the Italian Evaluation Association on the PDP. Incoming Vice-President Gail Barrington has now taken the lead in managing the PDP and steering the evaluation of the Credentialing program which is in the hands of the Claremont Evaluation Center. We look forward to receiving the evaluation report in October.
Board members, with inputs from Chapters and Members, have been fine tuning the 2015-2018 Strategic Plan and developing 2015-2016 action plans for each area of CES presence. As indicated in the 2015-2016 budget that was presented at the Annual General Meeting, we will be very active in the areas of communication and advocacy, professional learning, mentoring, and credentialing.
I wish you a relaxing yet productive summer.
Benoît Gauthier, President of the Board of Directors
Your Board of Directors: Gail Barrington (Vice-President), Simon Roy (Treasurer), Robert Chatwin (Secretary; Nova Scotia), Larry Bremner (Past President), Réanne Kinsella (Chair, Communication and Marketing; Newfoundland and Labrador), Kate Woodman (Chair, Professional Learning; Alberta and NWT), Brenda Wedge (Chair, Governance and Process; Prince Edward island), Sidiq Ali (Ontario), Denise Belanger (Manitoba), Jacques Bérard (SQEP), Kathy Gerber (National Capital), Maureen Matthew (Saskatchewan), Sandra Sellick (British Columbia and Yukon), Brenda Stead (New Brunswick), Rebecca Mellett (Executive Director).