About the Confederation Club
The Confederation Club is a networking organization whose purpose is to promote awareness and inform members on matters of economic, social or national interest with a conservative focus.
For years, executive members of this area’s Progressive Conservative Associations had talked about some kind of joint project.
In late 1975, Wayne Wettlaufer, newly arrived from the Honourable Walter Baker’s riding in Ottawa, suggested the idea of a Confederation Club that was a lunch time project of several Ottawa Riding Associations. It was clear that here was an idea whose time had come. The Confederation Club was born.
Wayne Wettlaufer became the founding President and first Honorary Life Member. Without the drive and enthusiasm of his first executive, Monty Monteith, Christina Weylie and Jeanne and Brock Foster the Confederation Club wouldn’t have happened.
Other members of the first executive that were actively involved included representatives of the riding associations from Waterloo Region and Wellington County: Carl Sulliman who was President of the Waterloo Federal Progressive Conservative Riding; Rich Hobson who wrote the Constitution; Barb Hull and Rod Nelson who were the early secretaries; and Dave Zimmer, Bill Barlow, John Cosman, Dorothy Beke, Jack Wallace and Marjorie Kunza.
At the founding meeting, a relatively young unknown, Joe Clark was the honoured guest speaker. Within a month after his appearance at the Confederation Club he had become Party Leader, Leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition and the Honorary President of Confederation Club.
The Confederation Club’s stated purpose is to provide an opportunity for members and their guest to hear prominent speakers discussing issues and problems of the day. In fulfilling their mandate the Directors have provided a wide selection of people and topics. Most have been at a key point in their career or at least a high point of media profile . Click here for list of previous guest speakers.
It is worth noting that in the early years of the Club the local press would feel they had to explain Confederation Club. They would say something like, “Mr. Lewis was speaking to Confederation Club, a local Progressive Conservative speakers’ Club”. They don’t do that any more…”Confederation Club” says it all.
Present Board of Directors :
Past President: Peter Black (deceased) and interim President Jerry Zhang
President: Barbara Shackleton
Treasurer: Allan R. Robb
Directors: Melba Bennet, Barbara Shackleton, Mark Maurer, Steve Cage, Nick Ermeta, Nathan Bahlbi