Virginia Ludy | Chief Executive Officer, Canadian National Exhibition Association (CNEA)
Virginia Ludy's wide-ranging experience in the event industry encompasses more than 30 years. She currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian National Exhibition Association (CNEA), which is the organization responsible for producing the annual Canadian National Exhibition (the Ex), Canada's largest community event. In this capacity, she also oversees the Canadian National Exhibition Foundation (CNEF). Virginia has played a leadership role in defining new strategic plans for both the CNEA and the CNEF, and is currently overseeing the development of a new master plan for the organization. Virginia also leads the organization in the area of business development, a new portfolio created as a result of the CNEA's recent independence from Exhibition Place and the City of Toronto.
Prior to her appointment as CEO, Virginia was the CNE's Assistant General Manager and Director of Operations. In this key role, she managed a diverse and talented team with responsibility for: emergency planning and preparedness; security, parking and traffic management; gate operations; midway; food services; safety engineering; visitor services; guest relations; information services; volunteer services; site planning; and event services. Prior to this, Virginia held a variety of positions at the CNE, including Operations Manager, Senior Concessions Coordinator and Marketing Coordinator. Before embarking on her career in the event industry, she was employed in the financial sector.
Virginia has served as the Chair of the Amusement Devices Advisory Council for the provincial Technical Standards and Safety Authority, and was the President of the Canadian Association of Fairs and Exhibitions. Virginia also served as a Director of the International Association of Fairs and Expositions (IAFE). Previously, she has volunteered on other boards and councils in her community.
Virginia holds a Bachelor of Applied Arts (Honours) in Geography from Ryerson University. She earned the Certified Fair Executive (CFE) designation from IAFE and graduated from its Institute of Fair Management. She also successfully completed the Certified Exposition Manager (CEM) program with the Canadian Association of Exposition Managers. Virginia has also successfully completed international courses in the area of emergency planning and preparedness.
Virginia has been a life-long resident of Toronto where she currently resides with her husband, James, and their two children.