Dr. Robert Oliphant, M.P. Don Valley West

Topic: Settling Refugees in Canada: The Importance of Interpretation and Translation Services
The Rev. Dr. Robert Oliphant was elected to the House of Commons on October 19, 2015, representing the federal riding of Don Valley West. He previously served in that position from 2008 until 2011 where he served as Official Opposition Critic for Veterans Affairs and for Multiculturalism.
He is currently the Chair of the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration. He is also Co-Chair of the Canada-Africa Parliamentary Association and the Canada-Pakistan Friendship Association. He served as Co-Chair of the House of Commons and Senate Special Joint Committee on Physician-Assisted Dying and as Chair of the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security from 2015 to 2017.
Rob’s recent legislative accomplishments include an Act which outlaws discrimination against genetic characteristics as well as an Act he co-sponsored which creates a national dementia strategy.

Rob received his Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Toronto and worked in industry as a Systems Accountant. An Ordained Minister in the United Church of Canada, he has a Masters of Divinity from the Vancouver School of Theology, at the University of British Columbia and served congregations in Newfoundland, Quebec, Yukon and Toronto. He earned a Doctorate from the Chicago Theological Seminary at the University of Chicago in 2008. From 2011 until 2015 he was President and CEO of the Asthma Society of Canada.

Dr. Mandy Wintink 

Topic: Failing With the Brain in Mind – Neuroscience

Many of us are encouraged to succeed, but we often ignore the role failing plays in that success. Contrary to popular practice, failure is not something we should avoid because failure helps us adjust and improve future outcomes. The brain is naturally wired to detect errors and adjust accordingly and therefore serves as a useful strategy for improving performance. This session will introduce participants to the neuroscience of failure in order to help re frame failure as natural and necessary as part of the process of learning and succeeding. 

Dr. Mandy Wintink, PhD is a Life Coach, Author, and CEO who focuses on applying knowledge of the brain to life skills and personal development. She earned her doctorate degree from Dalhousie University in Neuroscience and Psychology in 2005 and then founded the Center for Applied Neuroscience in 2010 where she trains people to become a life coach through understanding neuroscience, psychology, yoga, meditation, and mindfulness. She also teaches neuroscience and psychology as a faculty member at the University of Guelph-Humber. 

Javier Castillo

Topic:  Improve Your Memory, Improve Your Outcomes

Forgetting to pick up milk from the store is something that happens to all of us at one time or another. Fortunately, a lack of dairy doesn’t usually have major consequences. However, in the world of interpretation and translation, forgetfulness and an imperfect memory can lead to serious problems. Errors of omission are among the most frequent errors that interpreters commit.

Translators can lose time and productivity by having to re-research terms and ideas that they failed to retain.

An interpreter’s inability to recall complete details, terms, can have major negative outcomes. Interpreters’ renditions that end up as part of a record – either in depositions, courtrooms, or a doctor’s offices are done in consecutive, which is the most taxing on memory.

In this session, we take an in-depth look at the interpreting process, find strategies to improve retention and learn techniques to improve both active/working memory and long-term retention.

Javier Castillo, Jr., president of Castillo Language Services, Inc. in Greenville, NC is a conference interpreter, Federally Certified Court Interpreter, NC AOC certified court interpreter, and a Certified Medical Interpreter, (CCHI) and contract interpreter for the U.S. Department of State. Castillo has interpreted for international delegations and high-level speakers at international conferences and meeting across the United States as well as in Mexico and Peru. Castillo has provided interpreter training workshops since 2007 in North Carolina, Virginia and the Washington, DC area. He has provided in-house interpreter training for the interpreting team at Vidant Hospital, the Virginia Supreme Court for the staff court interpreters and for the Pitt County Department of Social Services.  Castillo has designed and taught courses on working with interpreters in the legal field at Campbell Law School and the UNC School of Law, as well as taught Continuing Legal Education courses for members of the judiciary.  Castillo is a frequent speaker and trainer at state and regional conferences. He is a board member of the Carolina Association of Translators and Interpreters (CATI) and a member of the International Association of Professional Translators and Interpreters (IAPTI). 

Julie Poirier

Chief Quality Officer
Translation Bureau of Canada: 
Because Quality Matters

Julie Poirier graduated in translation from the University of Ottawa in 2001 and was recruited by the Translation Bureau the same year. Over the years, she has contributed to major projects such as the translation of transcripts of the Gomery Commission hearings. In 2006, she made the transition into management and took over the reins of a legal translation unit. In 2015, she became director of a team of 40 interpreters providing interpretation services to Parliament. In November 2017, Julie was appointed the Translation Bureau’s first Chief Quality Officer.

Matthew Ball

Special Advisor to the VP
Translation Bureau of Canada: Because Quality Matters

Matthew Ball joined the Translation Bureau as Conference Interpreter, then Senior Interpreter, Director, and currently with the office of the Vice President, Service to Parliament and Interpretation (SPI) Sector. The SPI sector’s three interpretation services provide interpretation in Canada’s official languages as well as in Indigenous languages, and foreign languages and sign languages and in closed captioning at thousands of meetings every year on Parliament Hill, across Canada and even abroad.

Lionel Tona


Cloud Services for Translators and Interpreters
After providing an overview of popular cloud services, this presentation will explore ways translators and interpreters can leverage them to work smarter, securely and more collaboratively.
Lionel Tona, C. Trans., is a graduate from Glendon College, York University (MA in Translation & Certificate in Professional and Technical Writing). Over the years, Lionel held various positions in the Ontario Public Service as a Translator, Reviser and Policy Advisor. He also teaches translation and professional writing at Glendon College.

Qjinti Oblitas

The Indispensable Value of the Human Interpreter

Before becoming an interpreter, Qjinti Oblitas explored many worlds: a political science student in France; a local staff member at UNESCO in Bolivia; a community organizer in the suburbs of Paris; and even, briefly, a theatrical clown… Over time, she was drawn to interpretation, graduating in 2008 from the Master of Arts in Conference Interpreting at the prestigious Université de Genève. Professor Oblitas then began her career as a freelance conference interpreter in Europe. She is an accredited interpreter with the United Nations, the European Union and the Translation Bureau of the Government of Canada. She taught interpretation at the Université Catholique de l’Ouest, in Angers, and at the Université de Strasbourg. Currently, she is a full-time professor at the Glendon MCI, in Toronto, where she settled in 2014. Amongst her many pursuits, she undertook graduate studies in Quechua linguistics at the INALCO, in Paris, and studied American Sign Language. Her main areas of interest are: note-taking visualisation in consecutive interpreting, orality and non-written languages and online interpretation training.

Technology is disruptive and can even feel threatening to the interpreter. Memory, margin of error, focus, accuracy… the machine could – and eventually will – outperform the human interpreter in many ways. Artificial intelligence, with its flaws and myths, is here to stay and thrive. And yet, can a machine feel tension in a medical consultation? Or decipher the meaning of silence in a sentence? We know that only a human being can perceive and render the infinite subtleties of communication or swiftly solve complex ethical dilemmas. Tomorrow’s – dare I say, today’s? – interpreter will inform, design and manipulate technology.

To steer this change, we must understand the unique contribution of both man and machine. This presentation is an invitation to review some of the leading state-of-the-art technology (from remote interpreting platforms to Computer Assisted Interpreting) and to recognize the complexity of the interpreter’s role. This might propel us to re-think the interpreter’s role in the communication process. We must fundamentally re-shape our profession by identifying, articulating and ascertaining the indispensable value of the human interpreter.


Invitations went out on Monday, June 11th to those translators, interpreters and clients who have worked with us within the last year.  You should have received a unique link with a code which will be private and valid for one registration. Please don’t share the link.  On August 15th we will open registration to the general public, provided there is space still available.


Date: Saturday September 15th, 2018


The conference will be offered as in previous years on a “Pay It Forward” basis. There is no financial commitment required from participants. For more info on how to Pay it Forward, please visit the Pay It Forward Foundation (Give to your favourite charity, perform a good deed, make someone smile). This is an honour system, we don’t need to know what you do when Paying It Forward.

Watch Trailer movie “Pay It Forward”


FREE SDL TRADOS  Raffle after the Awards

Professional Development Hours/Continuing Education Points

The 2018 Conference has been approved for:

  • American Translators Association – 6 ATA CE Points
  • OCCI-ACI 5.5 PD Hours.