WHO WE ARE
At Wellington Advocacy we help you win with our proven method of blending network and knowledge.
We are a national full-service public affairs team with decades of combined professional experience serving as senior advisors in Canada’s highest political offices.
Our job is to create a comprehensive plan to get you noticed. Leveraging our unique relationships and background, we help you develop your story, reach more people and execute fresh engagement strategies. Our services include government and stakeholder relations, campaign services, digital advocacy, strategic communications and executive coaching, and international development.
Andrea van Vugt
Caitlyn was previously a creative director at an Alberta digital firm, helping clients in the private and non-profit sector adapt their outreach for social media. Prior to that, she served for several years as a senior campaign staffer to Jason Kenney, including as Creative Team Lead for the Alberta United Conservative Party's 2019 general election campaign.
Director of Research
Chris spent 16 years working on Parliament Hill as one of Canada’s leading political and policy researchers, most recently serving as Manager of Issues and Research in the Office of the Leader of the Opposition. He has worked on campaigns at all levels of government, including being a part of the Conservative Party’s national campaign team war room for five consecutive elections. He has extensive experience working on issues management, with Canada’s legislative and policy process and with a broad range of research tools.
Haley brings her strong digital outreach, mobilization and persuasion experience to the team. Prior to joining Wellington, she found her passion for the intersection of digital affairs and politics through her work at an innovative media group and an Alberta digital firm. She is a recent graduate of the University of Ottawa where she pursued a Joint Honours in Political Science and Communications.
Idee draws from his expertise in international development, blended finance, public policy, and strategic communications to serve private sector companies, governments, and civil society organizations. Idee previously served as the Director of Policy and Stakeholder Relations for the Office of the Minister of International Development and was twice recognized as among the Top 100 influencing the Government of Canada’s foreign policy.
Prior to co-founding Harper & Associates, Mr. Hunt served as a Director to Canada’s 22nd Prime Minister, Stephen Harper. In this capacity, he oversaw the Prime Minister’s Executive Office, Tour and Business Outreach. Jeremy is a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographic Society and a recipient of the Erebus Medal. He received an undergraduate degree in Political Science from Carleton University and a MBA from the Ivey Business School at Western University.
As a BC native, and having served as Executive Director of the BC Liberal Party and Director of Communications to British Columbia Premier Christy Clark, Katy has a unique understanding of the province’s political, public and private sector landscapes. A seasoned expert in communications, corporate planning, campaign management and stakeholder advocacy, Katy is adept at delivering solutions with meaningful and measurable impact on public opinion. Katy has spent over a decade advising senior cabinet members and elected officials including as Chief of Staff to the Minister of Health, and the Minister of Jobs, Tourism, Skills Training and Labour in British Columbia. Most recently, Katy served as Executive Director of Communications to Alberta Premier Jason Kenney.
Kayla is a respected public affairs leader with experience executing communications strategies for businesses and governments. A journalist by trade, Kayla has a decade of experience in media relations, brand PR, reputation management and corporate communications. Kayla most recently served as Executive Director of Communications to Premier Doug Ford where she was responsible for leading the government’s strategic communications, including the government response to COVID-19.
Lauren has served in the Office of the Prime Minister and as an advisor to federal Cabinet Ministers. She has been actively involved in the creation of federal and territorial budgets. Lauren has a Master of Public Administration from Queen’s University and is pursuing an MD at the University of Saskatchewan.
Leonard has been in the User Experience Design and development industry for over 14 years. He has worked on several successful projects in the private and public sectors, including at Alberta Health Services. During his time there, Leonard and his team designed and developed tools critical to Alberta’s response to COVID-19 including the COVID-19 online assessment tool. His work was also includes the design and front-end development of Alberta’s online health records portal allowing Albertans to access health records online. Leonard takes pride in finding solutions to challenges and is a big proponent of collaboration to deliver results to stakeholders.
Luwam brings almost a decade of public affairs experience having served as a senior staffer on Parliament Hill - both in government and opposition - and election campaigns. Luwam brings experience in developing and implementing communications and stakeholder strategies for senior executives in government, and the private sector. She brings to the role proven leadership in managing client portfolios, project execution, and a passion for emerging market partnerships, especially in Africa.
Matt de Jong
Over the past several years, Matt has worked alongside MLAs and in Alberta’s United Conservative Party to provide strategic advice and support with communications, issues management, and stakeholder relations. Matt brings experience in developing communications materials, administering political and community organizations, and political campaign management.
Matthew Gelinas specializes in direct marketing, strategic analysis, and voter contact campaigns. Matthew was a senior member of Jason Kenney’s PC and United Conservative Party Leadership campaigns. During the 2019 United Conservative Party election campaign he was responsible for direct voter contact and get-out-the-vote activities which saw a record number of votes cast for the United Conservative Party.
CEO and Board Member
Nick previously served as Alberta Premier Jason Kenney’s Chief of Staff and Campaign Director. Prior to that, Nick served as former BC Premier Christy Clark’s Chief of Staff, as Director of Issues Management to former Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and as a senior advisor to numerous federal Cabinet Ministers.
Director, Public Affairs
Peter joined after nearly ten years advising elected officials and candidates at the provincial and federal levels, and advising companies and non-profits in the private sector. He served as a senior advisor to Jason Kenney and Alberta's United Conservative caucus and to former BC Premier Christy Clark and caucus. In Ottawa, he worked for then-Minister Jason Kenney in three major federal departments. Most recently, he worked as a director for a national strategic communications firm.
Director, Trade & Quebec
Fluently bilingual, Phil brings a strong background in legislative processes and the Canadian regulatory environment. Drawn from his many years as a senior advisor and Chief of Staff on Parliament Hill, his experience includes familiarity with the Cabinet process, communications and issues management. Phil has deep political relationships in both the political and public service realms across Canada. As an expert in parliamentary procedure, Phil brings an understanding to the way things work in Ottawa that few have.
Director, Strategic Communications
Photi is fully bilingual and has over 20 years of experience in sports management, culture, technology and broadcasting; specializing in public relations, media training, issues and crisis management, project management and special events. He’s been the head of communications for the Canadian Olympic Committee, National Hockey League, Canadian Hockey League, Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and has worked for both the education and tech industries.
Ray is the co-founder and Managing Director of Harper & Associates, a global consulting firm led by Canada’s 22nd Prime Minister, Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper. From 2006-2015 Ray held a number of senior positions in the Office of the Prime Minister of Canada, including Chief of Staff and Principal Secretary. He holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Western University and also studied at the University of Calgary.
Sam brings almost a decade of senior executive political and private sector experience to Wellington Advocacy. Most recently, as the Executive Director of Policy to the Premier of Ontario, he was responsible for leading the government’s strategic policy development process. Sam has also served as a senior advisor to former Prime Minister Stephen Harper, current Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, and several federal cabinet ministers.
With more than fifteen years of experience in Ontario provincial politics, Trisha has an instinctive understanding of government relations, stakeholder management, communications and relationship building. Trisha has worked for the Leader of the Ontario PC Party, the Minister of Education in the Ford Government, and as the Manager of Government Relations for one of Canada’s largest universities.
Amber Russell brings over a decade of government and private sector management, operations, logistics and administrative experience to Wellington Advocacy. Previously, Amber has served in several senior management roles involving international travel, domestic event coordination and logistics including as Manager of Tour and Events in the Prime Minister's Office under the leadership of the Rt. Honourable Stephen Harper, P.C., Canada's 22nd Prime Minister, and Manager of Administration, Finance & Events at the Macdonald Laurier Institute.
Andrea van Vugt
Practice Lead, Trade
Andrea has more than 20 years of experience working in the public and private sectors, advising some of North America’s largest businesses on bilateral and trilateral trade issues. Andrea was the longest serving Foreign Affairs and Trade Advisor to Canada’s 22nd Prime Minister where she played an instrumental role in the conclusion of the Canada-Europe trade negotiations. Andrea also served as Chief of Staff to the Minister of International Trade where she oversaw the conclusion of trade talks with Ukraine, Israel, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
Brad most recently served as the Executive Director of the United Conservative Party (UCP) in Alberta. Previously, Brad was the Director of Fundraising for the UCP breaking all Alberta fundraising records for the 2019 Alberta Election. Brad has extensive political and business relationships throughout Alberta, and served as an original team member of the Jason Kenney Leadership Campaign. Brad is an energy expert having worked with numerous energy companies in his time with Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP).
Vice President, Engagement
As an experienced engagement specialist and facilitator, Brittany understands the importance of bringing people together for meaningful dialogue. Brittany's experience includes leading stakeholder relations for Alberta's largest homebuilder association and as a public engagement specialist with a national firm. Before joining Wellington, Brittany served as Executive Director of Government Caucus and Press Secretary to Minister Jason Copping.