Congratulations and welcome to Roland Pajares, our new IABC Manitoba Board President for 2017-2018! We’re sure you’re wondering, “Who is this guy?”, “What’s he going to do for our chapter?”, and, “What do you mean he’s from Toronto?”

We sat down with Roland to answer your burning questions. Want to put your IABC MB President on the hot seat? Send in your questions to!

We heard a nasty rumour that you are actually from Toronto. Is this true and do you now identify as a Winnipegger?

Yes, that’s true. I had the fortune/misfortune of being born at the centre of the universe and the alleged economic and industrial engine of our great country. You can blame my parents. Kidding.

I moved to Winnipeg in 2003 to do research for my Master’s degree at the University of Manitoba. I’ve been living in Winnipeg ever since and here to stay. I wouldn’t go as far to say I identify as a TRUE Winnipegger, rather more so a Canadian.

I’m fortunate that I’ve been able to live anywhere I chose in our country. My background as a former Torontonian has a huge impact on my identity and my worldview. I love both Winnipeg and Toronto.

You are the first male IABC Manitoba Board President in more than a decade. How do you feel about that?

I don’t feel any different with or without that knowledge that I’m the first male President in more than a decade. Indeed, some people may say leadership and character traits differentiate among the sexes, but in terms of IABC and our chapter, I feel it doesn’t matter. Our past leaders have established measurable goals and targets that are built on the momentum of previous years, and I’m no different in that regard.

What are you most excited about for the coming year and what do you want to achieve?

The chapter has several programs that I’m passionate about, but the one I’m focused on now and eager to develop is the chapter’s Gift of Communications program.

Last year, we identified the program as an added value for our members. The Gift program is a pillar of the IABC Foundation. It encourages our members and fellow chapters to give back to their communities with our professional skills and sometimes our financial support.

Our goal is to work with local social service or other nonprofit agencies, such as the United Way, in helping them to address their communication challenges by providing our communication counsel and training.

There is a strategic planning session of the IABC Board coming up. Does that happen every year? What’s on the agenda and will there be incriminating Instagram posts?

The strategic planning session happens every year during the summer months and is an essential component of the leadership training the chapter provides for our leaders.

Usually, the chapter president leads half-day session spread over one to three days. This year, we have a full day with guest facilitator, Catherine Ducharme. IABC Canada West Region (CWR) Chair.

I’m excited that Catherine’s IABC leadership experience will provide our leaders with both an international and regional context to the Association. Catherine has 20+ years of leadership experience in the communications profession, including 10+ years with IABC at the local, regional, and international level.

If one is looking for incriminating Instagram or social media posts, one should look out for them on our social media channels leading up to the 22nd. It’s going to be an awesome day!

Favourite Manitoba restaurant or meal?

I’m not a foodie or pretend to be. I’d as go as far to say that I don’t have a favourite Manitoba restaurant, but my fiancée would say Stella’s. I do love their Chorizo Hash Breakfast – been a while though.


Tune in next month for a sneak peek at IABC Manitoba programs for the coming year. The Prez sez your summer won’t be complete without it!