September 14, 2012

Expanding relationships: Danielle Smith embarks on first international tour to the U.S.

CALGARY, AB (September 14, 2012): Wildrose Official Opposition Leader Danielle Smith is launching her first international tour to the United States to promote Alberta, meet with industry experts in energy, agriculture and water and to forge strong relationships with key political and cultural leaders. 

 Smith is being hosted as a part of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) for a three week tour that begins on September 17th and ends on October 6th at the request of the U.S. Embassy that include stops in Washington D.C., Maryland, Louisiana, Montana and Wisconsin.  The IVLP is a program created by the U.S. Department of State to help “support the foreign policy goals of the United States,” reaching out to future and current leaders in international jurisdictions globally.  As the Leader of the Official Opposition and government in waiting, Smith said this is an important opportunity for herself and the Wildrose Opposition to build and improve relationships with our international partners.  “The U.S. is one of Alberta’s greatest partners in the sharing of technology, expertise and trade,” Smith said. “This is an important opportunity to represent Alberta and discuss three major areas of bilateral interaction: energy, agriculture and water. These issues are critical for Alberta’s future and are an important part in building relationships with our American friends.”  Prior attendees on the IVLP include former Calgary mayor David Bronconnier, current mayor of Fort McMurray Melissa Blake and Canada’s 22nd Governor General Edward Schreyer.  The entire three-week tour costs $9,080, which will be covered by the U.S. Government with no burden placed on the Alberta taxpayer.  To receive updates on the Official Opposition Leader’s trip, Smith will be updating a Travel Blog daily at under the Follow the Leader section on the main page. BACKGROUNDER U.S. Tour Itinerary and Highlights  Washington, DC – September 17 - September 20, 2012   

  • Meet with the Brookings Institution, Cato Institute along with foreign policy experts and political leaders. 

Annapolis, Maryland - September 21, 2012 

  • Meet with grassroot cultural organizations, state legislators and explore foreign policy issues that impact states, such as Maryland, at an individual level. 

New Orleans, Louisiana - September 22 - September 26, 2012 

  • Meet with local organizations, non-profits and think tanks to discuss economic development, social sustainability and greater transparency from government organizations. Also meet with local politicians and city council members. 

Helena, Montana - September 26 - September 29, 2012 

  • Meet with Governor Brian Schweitzer to discuss economic development and other state and government officials to talk about issues that impact energy, agriculture and water development in the region. 

Bozeman, Montana - September 29 - October 2, 2012 

  • Meet with local agricultural experts, think tanks and energy leaders to discuss issues of economic development and international trade. 

Madison, Wisconsin - October 2 - October 3, 2012 

  • Meet with local think tanks and citizen groups to discuss how to promote democratic initiatives and how to improve issues of transparency and accountability amongst governments. 

Milwaukee, Wisconsin - October 3 - October 6, 2012 

  • Meet with local leaders to discuss civic engagement in the democratic process, learn about technological development and innovation and other leading grassroots organizations. 

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