About CCA-BC

Our Mission:

Through a comprehensive network of high level personnel and regional experts we look to promote and facilitate business and trade opportunities between British Columbia and the countries of Latin America. We host a wide array of events where countries, companies, and independents can present and provide opportunities to expand business links between British Columbia and Latin america.

Support Us:

CCA-BC is a not-for-profit organization that promotes and assists B.C. companies engaged and interested in Latin America. If you or your company would like to help us to continue providing B.C. companies with this valuable resource please consider contributing to CCA-BC.


As a not-for-profit organization, we appreciate the time and effort put forth by our volunteers. If you would like to volunteer at CCA-BC, please contact us.

Board of Directors

  • Chairman and President of CFA – Canadian Forum for the Americas in Ottawa;
  • Board Member at Can Health;
  • President of LACES – Canadian Education Services Latin America Ltd – Maple Bear South America;
  • President Maple Bear Schools Mexico and Central America;
  • President of Addexo Consulting and Formula Trade;
  • Chairman at Enter Trips and Acecla Technologies;
  • Former Advisory Board Member at McRae Institute for International Management at Capilano University;
  • Advisory Board Member at Habitat Enterprises;
  • Member of VANTEC – Vancouver Angel Network on Technology at SFU;
  • Member of BC Director’s Club;
  • Voted Brazilian Franchising National Leader in 2002 and 2003 and in Education in 2004 and 2006;
  • Recipient of Capilano University President’s Service Award in 2010;

  • Honorary Consul of Costa Rica in Vancouver;
  • Director of GRULEX (The Latin Export Group);
  • Founder member of the Ethno Business Council of B.C.;
  • Founder Member of the Latin-American Canadian Business Association;
  • Recipient of 2010 President’s Service Award Capilano University;

January 1965 first employee and started Cargill Inc. operations in Brazil, and was involved in hybrid seed,animal feed, grain origination, ports, orange juice, cocoa, coffee, director of Cargill Agricola in Brasil helped in studies to set up Cargill operations/divisions in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Kenia, Thailand, Australia, Ivory Coast, Peru, Paraguay, Colombia, and Venezuela. Cargill Country Manager Mexico. Retired from Cargill in 2001.

Cristina Dias is founder and president of Mogiana Coffee, a farm to cup Specialty Coffee Wholesale company servicing Food & Beverage and Retail clients in Canada. Cristina comes from a family of five generations of farming in Brazil and has extensive connections in coffee, soy, eucalyptus and cattle.

Former Member of the Board of Directors for CSES – Canadian Special Events Society.

Board member of the Entrepreneurs Organization Accelerators Program

Daniel M. Shapiro (PhD, Cornell) is Professor of Global Business Strategy at the Beedie School of Business, Simon Fraser University. He has worked for forty years as an educator, researcher, and academic administrator. Most recently he was Dean of the Beedie School of Business where he successfully developed a strategic position for the School, raised the money to name it, and led the School through successful accreditation rounds with AACSB and EQUIS. In the past he was Principal of the School of Community and Public Affairs at Concordia University. He has been Director of the Executive MBA program at Simon Fraser University and Associate Dean responsible for executive programs. He was Director of the CIBC Centre for Corporate Governance and Risk Management and co-academic director of the Vancouver Directors Education Program offered through the ICD Corporate Governance College. As an academic, he has published five books and monographs and over eighty scholarly articles on international business and strategy, corporate ownership and governance, foreign investment and MNEs, industrial structure, and various aspects of public policy. His research has been published in Strategic Management Journal, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of International Business Studies, and Journal of Industrial Economics, among others. His articles have been cited nearly 4000 times. His article with Peter Klein, and Jeff Young on Board Independence and Family Firms was published in Canadian Investment Review as Winner of the 2004 Barclays Global Investors Canada Ltd. Research Award. He has taught courses in managerial economics, strategic analysis, international business strategy and business and government. In 1995 and again in 2002 he was awarded the TD Canada Trust Teaching Award, and in 2014 was named the Academy of International Business (AIB) Educator of the Year. He has designed and delivered executive programs to managers in the private and public sectors, both in Canada and abroad (including Russia, Guyana, Indonesia and China). He has served as a consultant to various organizations in the public and private sectors in the areas of foreign investment, mergers, competition policy, strategy and industrial policy, has served on the Boards of both private and public organizations. He has also had international experience in a variety of countries including El Salvador, Belarus, Germany and Hong Kong. He has been visiting professor at McGill University, Hong Kong Baptist University, Rotterdam School of Management (Erasmus University), Monash University, and CEIBS (China).

Ambassador Ernesto Otto Rubarth holds a Bachelor degree in Law and a BA in Philosophy from the University of Rio Grande (Brazil) and a Master of Arts degree in Sociology from the Pontifical University of Rio de Janeiro.

He joined the Brazilian Foreign Service in 1975.

Main positions in Brazil (at the Ministry of External Relations):

Assistant to the Science & Technology Division (1975-1976); Advisor to the Communication and Documentation Department (1982-1983); Deputy Head of the Southern Africa Division (1985-1986); Deputy Head of the United Nations Division (1992-1995); Head of Staff, Under Secretariat for Political Affairs (2003-2006).

In other public institutions:

Director of International Affairs at the Ministry of Health (1995-2000);

State Secretary for International Affairs, Government of Rio de Janeiro (2007-2009).

Posts abroad:

As a diplomat, he has served abroad in Prague, Stockholm, Pretoria (temporary mission), Los Angeles, Montevideo and Seoul. After his promotion to the rank of Ambassador, Mr. Rubarth was designated Consul-General in Geneva (2009-2013) and Consul-General in Vancouver (2013 to present).

During his career, Mr. Rubarth has worked in various areas, including in multilateral meetings and international conferences and held positions such as Director of the Brazilian Pavilion at the Consumer Goods International Fair in Brno (Czech Republic, 1977); Negotiator on GATT’s Multi-Fiber Agreement (Stockholm, 1980); Delegate to the United Nations General Assemblies (New York, 1993-1994); Delegate to the UN Global Conference on Population & Development (Cairo, 1994); Delegate to the UN Global Conference on Women (Beijing, 1995); Delegate to the Directing Council of the Pan-American Health Organization (Washington, 1995-1999);Delegate to the World Health Organization Executive Assemblies (Geneva, 1995-1999); High level meetings with the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank on financing mechanisms for social projects in Latin America (Brasilia and Washington, 1995); Delegate to the Brazil- South Korea Bilateral Commission and Political Consultations (Seoul, 2000); Delegate to the 1st. South America-Arab Countries Summit (Brasilia, 2006); Delegate to the UN Conference on Bio-Diversity (Brazil, 2006); Member of UNITAID Executive Committee (Geneva, 2006), among others.

Academic activities:

Member of the Examining Board at the Brazilian Diplomatic Academy.


Book – Brazilian Diplomacy and the International Social Agenda: Health issues – FUNAG editor, 1999.

Mark Cogan recently retired from the BC Government’s Business Immigration Office, where he worked for 17 years looking after business immigrants and corporate investment from all parts of the world. He had direct responsibility in the design and implementation of specific immigration programs for business people. He now continues working as an independent certified immigration consultant. He is originally from Chile, where he got an industrial engineering degree. In Vancouver, he later got a MBA degree. Before joining the government, he worked for major international corporations and later operated his own import-export company. He speaks several languages.
Former Chief for Latin American and the Caribbean of the United Nations Office for Project Services. Expert in project implementation and procurement services, and the policies and procedures of multilateral organizations and banks.
Lecturer about topics relevant to corporate social responsibility and ethics in business. Writer and columnist for several Brazilian newspapers and blogs.

Author of the book “Nem aqui, nem ali, nem acolá”, as well as six articles for an anthology of Brazilian writers. Active in various organizations of the civil society, such as: trustee for The International Maria Nobrega Foundation and other organizations involved in conservation and the preservation of historical monuments.

He serves as an advisor to the Coordination of the Cultural Patrimony of the City of João Pessoa. His interest in Canadian-Brazilian relations dates back to high school, during his tenure as the representative of Canada in the Pan American Club. He is a founding member of the Consultative Council of the Maple Bear Schools in Brazil.

Born in Rio de Janeiro on August 13, 1945. Bachelor in Economics, State University of Rio de Janeiro. Master of Arts in Economics, Ottawa University.
Main Posts in Brazil (Ministry of External Relations)
Member of the Policy Planning Staff (1981-1984) Head of the Direction of Economic Studies and Research (DEPE) Head of the Direction of the Southern Cone Common Market (MERCOSUL) Director of the Department of Latin American Integration (DIN) Under-Secretary for Norms and Publications at the Communications Secretariat of the Presidency of the Republic
Posts Abroad
Diplomat: Ottawa, Tehran, Paris, New York Ambassador in Quito Ambassador in Geneva Ambassador in Mexico Consul General in Vancouver
Academic Activities
Lecturer of Introduction to Economics, Brasília University Professor of Brazilian Foreign Policy at the Diplomatic Academy Lecturer on MERCOSUL at the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences – FLACSO
Books, Articles and Publications

  • Book- Mercosul Today. Sergio Florencio and Ernesto Araujo.
  • Translated in Spanish under the title “Mercosul. Project, Reality and Perspective”. VESTCON Edition,1997.
  • Article “ Mercosul in Times of Uncertainty, CEBRI – Brazilian Centre for International Relations, 2001.
  • Article “Foreign Policy and Social Policies”. Published in the “Foreign Policy Magazine” Sep-Dec 2003
  • Article “Human Rights and Foreign Policy”. Published in the magazine “National Interest”Jul-Sep, São Paulo. 2008
  • Article “Brazil and the Challenge of Development at the United Nations”. Published in the book “Brazil and the UN”. Alexandre de Gusmão Foundation. Brasilia. 2008.
  • Mimeo “Comparing Trade Policies of Brazil and Mexico from 1980 to the Present Time”. Presented at the Congress of the Latin American Studies Association – LASA. Toronto. October 2010.
  • Article “Modelos de Desenvolvimento Latino Americanos”. Published in the magazine “Política Externa” Dec/Jan/Feb 2011-2012, São Paulo.
  • Article “Le Brésil et la crise économique international actuelle”. Published in the magazine Diplomatie. Affairs Stratégiques et Relations Internationales. Les Grands Dossiers. No. 8. Avril-Mai 2012, France.
  • Article “Perspectivas Mexicanas. Eleições Presidenciais. O Futuro Visita o Passado” . Published in the magazine “Política Externa” Jun/Jul/Aug 2012. São Paulo.
  • Article “Divergência e reconciliação entre Brasil e México”. Published in the newspaper “Valor Econômico” May 2, 2012. Brazil.

After attending the University of Western Ontario, Mr. Sadler assumed roles ranging from consultant, member of advisory boards, and operational executive positions.

Over the past 20 years his company has been very successful in assisting businesses by raising millions of dollars in government export grants, loans and venture capital for his clients. Mr. Sadler develops joint ventures and partnerships between both national and international companies. While he has dealt within numerous business and technology sectors, he has a special interest with renewable technologies.

He has developed key relationships with private and public entities throughout the Canadian, Caribbean, Central and South American markets and operates a wholly owned subsidiary corporation in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Zhang Xue (Lisa)’s experience includes business development at Alibaba, Shanghai, advertising mediation at Dentsu in Beijing, and proprietorship of STEM education in Canada. As creator and CEO of STEMstorm, she is on the leading edge of STEM education, providing effective tutoring in the digital skills pertinent to many domains. Lisa founded STEMstorm in 2016 to provide 21st Century education systems to both institutions and students in classroom and online.  Curriculums include computer science, game coding, robotics, 3D printing, mobile applications, circuits engineering, video editing, as well as many others of particular interest to children, such as creative art, drone engineering and space exploration. STEMstorm engages students with project-based learning activities that stimulate creativity, cooperation, and critical thinking to solve real-world problems. The self-directed learning systems are individually designed for each student’s knowledge level.

Advisory Board

Gavin Dirom
Tim Kukler
Linda Morris
Jason Tse
Bill Ross
Alan Minz

Previews Event Partners