PROBUS Club of Durham West



Phil Craig is Co-Founder, Lead Historian and Master Story-Teller for Liberation Tours. He's also a professional actor with numerous credits in film, television and stage including seasons with the prestigious Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Ontario, Canada. In 2014 Phil embarked on a world tour in the highly successful stage production The Last Confession starring David Suchet (who many will know as BBC’s Inspector Hercule Poirot). Film-goers will recognize Phil as Rachel McAdams’ father in the hit movie The Time Traveler’s Wife or recall seeing him with Russel Crowe in Cinderella Man, or alongside Ralph Fiennes in David Cronenburg’s Spider. More recently he appears in the award winning Hardy Boys series and guest starred in the NBC mini-series Five Days at Memorial. He can also be seen in The Handmaid’s TaleThe Exorcist and in the acclaimed Netflix horror series Hemlock Grove. He has contributed several memorable characters for the CBC hit series Murdoch Mysteries and continues to lend his voice to numerous radio ad spots. Much to his chagrin, he is often remembered as the guy in the Lotto 6/49 commercial that gives away cottages to his family – and that commercial was a long time ago!

Phil has been guiding battlefield tours for over ten years where his combination of story-telling skills, knowledge and passion for history takes you inside the battle in a way that few historians can. He has been studying military history since his teenage years and has made numerous trips to the battlefields of Europe to investigate, research and remember. Some of the most poignant spots we visit have come as the result of Phil ‘tripping over them’ during his battlefield discovery tours.

For more information on Phil Click here.

Deidrey Francois - What's in a Name?

Deidrey Francois is a Singer-songwriter, Speaker, Performer and JoyBringer. She delivers keynotes at Spiritual Centres and Seniors groups as well as concert venues internationally. Deidrey has performed with powerhouses like Jackie Richardson and Patti Austin. Her music has been featured on CBC radio and her musical versatility is performed with infectious enthusiasm. Her intent is to bring Joy in Melody to wiggle, giggle and to touch a listener's heart.

For more information on Deidrey Click here.

May Speaker - Don Cornack - Financial Advisor, IG Wealth Management

Don visited us in February but due to our time constraints he was unable to complete his presentation.  He is back this month by popular demand.

Don services numerous clients in Durham Region and is here to discuss Estate and Tax Planning ideas, including how you can reduce Probate Fees on death.

April Speaker - Amy Barron - Agatha Christie & Archeology

If you don't know how these two are connected, then join us to learn how the great mystery novelist's life is revealed within the pages of her books  Her love for the Middle East and the life she lived with her famous archaeologist husband provided the basis for many of her greatest novels, including Murder on the Orient Express, Death on the Nile and Murder in Mesopotamia.  Learn about her life, travels, and the fabulous ancient sites whose mysteries she helped uncover.

For more information on Amy Barron go to

March Speaker - Lianne Harris– Persia

Take a magic carpet ride for 1-hour with Lianne Harris as we fly into ancient Persia.

From modern mathematics and astronomy to the enduring stories of Ali Baba shared among the caravan drivers along the Silk Route, learn of the enduring legacy of one of the world’s most important empires. Understand better how Persia enchanted and enlightened the past, and why it was the envy of the world.

Click here for more information on Lianne Harris.

February Speaker:  Don Cornack – Financial Advisor, IG Wealth Management

Don Cornack is a Financial Advisor at IG Wealth Management, serving the financial needs of clients for the last 14 years at IG.  Don has designations including the Qualified Associate Financial Planner, Registered Retirement Consultant, and the Responsible Investing Specialist.  Don services numerous clients in Durham Region and is here to discuss Estate and Tax Planning ideas, including how you can reduce Probate Fees on death.

January Speaker:  Jeremy Bertrand - Senior Program Advisory Specialist | Ministry of Finance

Do you find the thought of filing your personal Income Tax and Benefit Return stressful, confusing, or overwhelming? Well come out and listen to Jeremy help you to understand the importance of increasing your knowledge of the personal income tax system.

Find out which tax credits and benefits you and your family may qualify for.  Jeremy will help demystify these programs.  Jeremy delivers his seminars with humour and enthusiasm.

For a summary of our 2023 Speakers Click Here

For a summary of our 2022 Speakers Click Here

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