Carlene Alexander

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Infrastructure
Deputy Minister of Legislative Affairs

Carlene Alexander became the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure and Deputy Minister of Legislative Affairs in June 2022.

She was previously appointed as the Deputy Minister of Seniors and Accessibility in October 2021 and was the inaugural Comptroller General in October 2020 where she successfully partnered with ministries and agencies to deliver on the government’s enterprise risk management framework.

Carlene is a seasoned senior executive who has worked in the public sector for more than two decades. She has held several executive positions in federal, provincial and municipal governments as well as the broader public sector. Carlene previously worked for the Ontario Public Service (OPS) from 2009 to 2014, where she held executive positions in various ministries including the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Indigenous Affairs and the Pan/Parapan American Games Secretariat.

Before returning to the OPS in 2020, she was the Interim Director of Education at the Toronto District School Board (TDSB), where she was responsible for leading TDSB in executing a safe return to school plan during the COVID‑19 pandemic. Prior to this, she held the position of Associate Director of Business Operations and Service Excellence at TDSB where she oversaw the board’s $3.4 billion budget, all of the TDSB’s facilities, human resources and all other business and operational functions. Before working in the education sector, she was with the Regional Municipality of York, where she worked on social housing issues.

Carlene holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree, a Masters of Business Administration, and holds a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) designation.


Shawn Batise

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Northern Development
Deputy Minister, Ministry of Indigenous Affairs

Shawn Batise became Deputy Minister of Northern Development in June 2022 and Deputy Minister of Indigenous Affairs in August 2019.

As Deputy Minister of Indigenous Affairs, he led the vaccine rollout in Indigenous communities during the COVID‑19 pandemic. Shawn has provided leadership on province-wide, reconciliation efforts with Indigenous peoples, in response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action. These include Ontario’s Response to the Final Report on the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) and the provincial response to Indian Residential School Burials.

Prior to being appointed as Deputy Minister of Indigenous Affairs he held the role of Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) in the Negotiations and Reconciliation Division, before moving into the ADM role in the Indigenous Relations and Programs Division. During his tenure with the Ontario Public Service, he has been actively involved in many Far North land use and socio-economic development initiatives. Shawn joined the provincial government in 2016.

He is a proud member of Matachewan First Nation and began his career in policy and negotiations as the Executive Director of the Wabun Tribal Council, which represents six First Nation communities in northeastern Ontario. As Executive Director, Shawn was responsible for overseeing the Council’s day-to-day operations. He served in this position for 25 years, representing Wabun’s member communities in negotiations.

Under Shawn’s leadership, Wabun negotiated Treaty Land Entitlements, the first federal health transfer in Ontario, and resource development agreements, in addition to five Impact and Benefits Agreements, and over 50 Memoranda of Understanding with exploration companies. Shawn also found time to further his education, and in 2012 received an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration and Governance from Ryerson University. Over the years his dedication, commitment and advocacy of First Nations issues at local, regional and national levels in policy and political forums have earned Shawn the respect of Indigenous, government and industry leaders.

Shawn makes his home in Toronto with his partner, Irma and son, Quinton. His daughter, Samyra, and grandson Kailo live in Timmins.

Shawn has a B.A. (Honours) in Public Administration and Governance.


Denise Cole

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services

Denise Cole became Deputy Minister of Children, Community and Social Services in July 2021. She also served as Deputy Minister for Seniors and Accessibility from July 2019 until October 2021.

Before becoming Deputy Minister, Denise was with Ministry of the Attorney General as the Assistant Deputy Attorney General, Strategic Initiatives.

Denise has been in the OPS since 2010 and has held senior executive positions in a number of ministries. Denise is a transformational leader with extensive experience in the human services sector and has led complex transformation initiatives with cross-divisional and cross ministry implications.

Prior to joining the OPS, Denise was Partner and Vice-President with a public affairs firm where she provided strategic advice to a diverse array of clients on public policy and government issues. She has also worked in senior positions within the federal, provincial and municipal levels of government.

Community involvement and volunteering are enormously important to Denise, and she is a recipient of the Governor General’s Commemorative Medal on the 125th Anniversary of the Canadian Confederation, which was awarded to individuals who have made a significant contribution to their fellow citizens, to their community, or to Canada. Denise is profiled in the inaugural edition of the book 100 Accomplished Black Canadian Women, and in Jamaicans in Canada: When Ackee Meets Codfish, as one of 250 individuals born in Jamaica who have made extraordinary contributions to Canada.

Denise is a graduate of McMaster University. When she is not being a doting auntie or godmother, she is learning to play the saxophone.


David Corbett

Deputy Attorney General

David Corbett became Deputy Attorney General in August 2020.

David joined the OPS as Deputy Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development in August 2019.

Previously, David was Chair of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Appeals Tribunal (WSIAT). His focus as Chair was reducing the time it took for appeals to be heard and expanding the use of digital technologies.

David was a partner at Fasken where he practiced law from his days as an articling student until his appointment as WSIAT Chair. David was also a member of the Fasken Labour, Employment and Human Rights practice.

During his years at Fasken, David was involved in many aspects of labour, employment and human rights law on behalf of employees, unions and employers. His experience includes collective bargaining, grievance and interest arbitration, labour board matters, occupational health and safety, workers’ compensation, employment standards, human rights and pay equity. David appeared before both provincial and federal tribunals and courts.

David also served as the global managing partner of Fasken for nine years between 2006 and 2015 and the Ontario regional managing partner for three years between 2003 and 2006. David began the labour, employment and human rights practice of Fasken Toronto in 1984. Prior to that, David practiced as a corporate and commercial lawyer.


Bernard Derible

Deputy Minister, Emergency Management, Treasury Board Secretariat
Commissioner of Emergency Management

Bernard (Bernie) Derible is Ontario’s Commissioner of Emergency Management and became Deputy Minister of Emergency Management within the Treasury Board Secretariat in June 2022.

He was first appointed Deputy Minister and Commissioner of Emergency Management in the Ministry of the Solicitor General in April 2022.

As Deputy Minister responsible for emergency management, Bernie leads the development and implementation of emergency management programs in the province and has oversight of the Provincial Emergencies Operation Centre.

Prior to his appointment as Deputy Minister, Bernie held the role of Strategic Advisor for the Vaccine Secretariat, in the Ministry of the Solicitor General, where he supported the delivery of the vaccine program.

Bernie has more than 35 years of leadership and advisory experience in emergency preparedness, disaster mitigation and civil-military operations both in Canada and internationally. He served as a Canadian military officer from 1985 to 2006 and held the posts of Senior Military Advisor to the Federal Minister of National Defense, Acting Base Commander, Equerry to His Royal Highness Prince Charles and Her Royal Highness Princess Diana, and participated in United Nations peace support operations and NATO operations in Europe and Afghanistan.

Bernie holds a Bachelor of Science degree in behavioural psychology from Dalhousie University. He is an Applied Military Science and Leadership Distinguished Graduate from the United States Army Command and General Staff College and is a certified Master Trainer in Neuro Linguistic Programming from the American Board of Neuro Linguistic Programming.


Mario Di Tommaso

Deputy Solicitor General, Community Safety

Mario Di Tommaso became Deputy Solicitor General of Community Safety in October 2018.

Previously, Mario held the rank of Staff Superintendent of Communities and Neighbourhood Command with the Toronto Police Service. Mario has more than 38 years of progressive policing experience in community safety, homicide, major crime, intelligence, national security, drug investigations, major incident management and community relations. In his role as Staff Superintendent, Mario was responsible for 8 police Divisions, Traffic Operations, Community Partnerships & Engagement Unit. He oversaw a staff of approximately 2250 officers, 500 civilians and a $300 million budget.

Mario held a number of positions over his distinguished career at the Toronto Police Service and served on various committees including, but not limited to, the Mayor’s Committee on Supervised Injection and Overdose Prevention sites and the Toronto Drug Strategy Implementation Panel. Mario has also co-chaired the Chief of Police’s Muslim Community Consultative Committee. In 2017, Mario represented the Toronto Police Service in, and graduated from the IALG – Pearls in Policing Program, a Senior International Police Leadership Program.

Mario holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Justice Studies from the University of Guelph Humber, a Certificate in Law Enforcement and Administration from the University of Toronto, and is a Graduate of the Senior Management Institute for Police. He also holds his Certified Municipal Manager designation.

Mario was invested into the Order of Merit for the Police Forces by the Governor General at the Officer rank, and has received the Police Exemplary Service Medal - 30 year bar, and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.


Karen Ellis

Deputy Solicitor General, Correctional Services

Karen Ellis became Deputy Solicitor General, Correctional Services in July 2021.

Karen has over 30 years of diverse and extensive experience in Canada’s federal public service encompassing policy, operations, service delivery and three regional postings. She has worked in 11 different federal departments and agencies including the Privy Council Office, National Defence, the Canada Revenue Agency, Natural Resources Canada and Veterans Affairs.

As a federal executive, Karen held increasingly senior positions over 20 years, culminating in 7 years as an Associate Deputy Minister, in 3 different posts.

Karen has led diverse teams to many accomplishments, through significant changes, and has adapted successfully to different mandates and cultures throughout her career.

Most recently, Karen served as the Assistant Deputy Minister of Institutional Services within the Ontario Ministry of the Solicitor General, where she had strategic and operational oversight and accountability for 25 adult correctional facilities, including provincial jails, detention centres, correctional centres, and treatment centres.

Karen brings her focus on people, and her expertise and experience in change management and leadership development to all of her work in public service.


Jason Fitzsimmons

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Energy

Jason Fitzsimmons became Deputy Minister of Energy in October 2022.

Previously, Jason held the role of Chief Corporate Affairs and Customer Care Officer with Hydro One since August 2018, with oversight of the customer service, corporate affairs, marketing, sustainability and Indigenous relations functions.

With more than 30 years’ experience in the electricity sector, Jason is a highly-regarded and passionate business leader with a proven track record for successfully executing large-scale transformations and building strong partnerships with key stakeholders. In his prior role, Jason played an instrumental role achieving record-high customer satisfaction and building strong relationships with customers, stakeholders and Indigenous communities. As a champion for diversity, equity and inclusion, he has served as the executive sponsor for employee resources groups to assist in the development of strategic plans and bring focus to actions that served to break long standing barriers.

Jason previously held the roles of Vice President of Corporate Development and Vice President of Labour and Employee Relations at Hydro One, where he was responsible for driving strategic change, including the in-sourcing of the 400-employee Customer Contact Centre to deliver best-in-class customer service.

Prior to joining Hydro One, Jason held executive roles at the Ontario Hospital Association and Ontario Power Generation. He is a Certified Human Resource Executive known for his passion for health and safety in the workplace and building collaborative relationship with unions.

In 2020, Jason was recognized as one of Canada’s 50 Best Executives by the Globe and Mail’s Report on Business for his ability to guide transformational change while offering industry-leading customer support programs during the pandemic.

Jason was a prior member of Ivey Energy Policy Advisory Board at Western University & the Advisory Board for Toronto Metropolitan University’s Centre for Labour Management Relations. He has also served as an Independent Director on the Board of Directors for the Electrical Power Systems Construction Association and Electricity Distributors Association.


Shannon Fuller

Deputy Minister, Policy and Delivery, Cabinet Office
Associate Secretary of the Cabinet

Shannon Fuller became Deputy Minister of Policy and Delivery, Cabinet Office and Associate Secretary of the Cabinet in June 2023.

Shannon was acting as the Deputy Minister of Colleges and Universities in addition to her role as Deputy Minister of Strategic Planning. She has a breadth and depth of experience across the OPS and is recognized as a collaborative and strategic leader.

Prior to taking on this role, Shannon was the Deputy Minister of Policy and Delivery at Cabinet Office from September 2022 to December 2022, where she worked with all ministries and the Premier’s Office to develop and deliver the government’s policy and legislative agenda. Shannon was previously the Assistant Deputy Minister for Economic, Environmental, Justice and Intergovernmental Policy in Cabinet Office.

Prior to joining Cabinet Office, Shannon worked at the Ministry of Education in various roles. Shannon has been in the OPS for over 20 years and held positions at the Ministry of Intergovernmental Affairs, Cabinet Office Communications and the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing.

Shannon holds a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Victoria and a Specialized Honours Degree in Public Policy and Administration from York University.


Martha Greenberg

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing

Martha Greenberg became Deputy Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing in June 2023.

Martha previously was the Deputy Minister of Policy and Delivery, Cabinet Office, and Associate Secretary of the Cabinet.

She was also the Deputy Minister of Legislative Affairs from December 2021 to June 2022. As the Deputy for Policy and Delivery, she works with all ministries and the Premier’s Office to develop and deliver the government’s policy and legislative agenda. Martha was previously the Deputy Minister of Legislative Affairs, with accountability to ensure that the government’s agenda for protecting Ontarians and creating more long-term prosperity will continue to move forward in the legislature.

Martha is also Deputy Minister of Long-Term Care and the Deputy Minister for Seniors and Accessibility in addition to her current role as Deputy Minister of Policy and Delivery in Cabinet Office on an interim basis.

Martha previously had carriage over the economic, environmental, resource, transportation, justice and intergovernmental aspects of the government’s policy agenda, as an Assistant Deputy Minister within Cabinet Office.

Prior to joining Cabinet Office, Martha worked at the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care in various roles, including in Health Promotion working on policies and programs that promote healthier choices and supportive environments. She also worked in the Transformation Secretariat, providing leadership for health-system transformation and initiating the ministry’s strategy around patient empowerment. Martha began her OPS career working in various roles in infrastructure and energy.

Martha holds a Bachelor of Science from Wilfrid Laurier University and a Master of Science from Memorial University of Newfoundland.


Sarah Harrison

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport

Sarah Harrison became Deputy Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport in July 2023.

Prior to this appointment, Sarah Harrison was the Deputy Minister of Communications in Cabinet Office and Associate Secretary of the Cabinet from June 2022 to July 2023. She was also the Deputy Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries from December 2021 to June 2022.

She served previously as Saskatchewan Deputy Minister of Environment, Manitoba Deputy Minister of Conservation and Climate, and Manitoba Deputy Minister of Sport, Culture and Heritage.

Sarah’s prior public service experience also includes roles as a senior advisor to the Saskatchewan Deputy Minister to the Premier, Vice President of Operations and Strategy at SaskBuilds Crown Corporation, and progressively senior roles in the governments of Ontario and British Columbia where she led the province’s communications program for climate action, the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, and Open Government.

Sarah’s diverse experience also includes senior corporate communication positions in the financial and telecommunications industries.

She earned a Master of Arts degree from Royal Roads University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Toronto.


Serge Imbrogno

Deputy Minister, Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks

Serge Imbrogno became Deputy Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks in June 2018.

Serge served as the Deputy Minister of Energy from April 2012 – June 2018. Previously, he served as the Assistant Deputy Minister of the Corporate and Electricity Finance Division in the Ontario Financing Authority. He has been a member of the board of directors of the Ontario Electricity Financial Corporation since April 2008.

Serge has also held senior positions at the Ministry of Finance, in the former ministries of Industry, Trade and Technology and Consumer and Commercial Relations, and at the Regional Municipality of Hamilton-Wentworth.

Serge has an Honours Bachelor degree in economics and history from McMaster University and a Master of Arts in economics from the University of Western Ontario.


Doug Jones

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Transportation

Doug Jones became Deputy Minister of Transportation in February 2022.

Doug brings over three decades of executive leadership in both public and private sectors. Over his career, Doug has managed a variety of portfolios including construction/maintenance infrastructure, road safety, transportation policy, municipal transit service, operations, and health and safety.

Most recently, Doug was the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission in New Brunswick. He served as the Deputy City Manager in Edmonton, where he was responsible for city-wide operations, including transportation policy, providing leadership over the municipal transit service transformation and partnering with infrastructure colleagues in the construction and launch of Light Rapid Transit lines.

He was also a Senior Vice President with Canada Post, the President of Innocon, and held senior leadership roles with Lafarge in both Canada and the United States.

Doug holds a Master of Business Administration from Niagara University and a Bachelor of Science from Acadia University. He is a Certified Corporate Director (ICD.D) with the Institute of Corporate Directors and a Certified Engineering Technician (CET) with the Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists (OACETT).


John Kelly

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

John Kelly became Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) in August 2020.

John brings more than 25 years of leadership in the agricultural, food and life sciences industries, spanning private, public and not-for-profit sectors. Prior to joining OMAFRA, John was Chief Innovation Officer at Bioenterprise Corporation, where he was responsible for leading the acceleration of agri-tech business ventures. John has also held senior-level roles in organizations such as DNAstack Inc., Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers’ Association and MaRS Landing.

John holds a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) from the University of Guelph and a Master of Science from the University of Alberta.


Renu Kulendran

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Public and Business Service Delivery

Renu Kulendran became Deputy Minister of Public and Business Service Delivery in June 2022.

She was previously the Deputy Minister of Government and Consumer Services since July 2021.

Renu has over 32 years of Ontario Public Service experience in diverse policy, regulatory, licensing, enforcement and program delivery environments across several ministries, including Education, Labour, Training and Skills Development, and Cabinet Office. She was the Associate Deputy Minister, ServiceOntario, at the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGCS).

Prior to joining MGCS, Renu was the Assistant Deputy Minister, Community Services, at the Ministry of the Solicitor General where she championed community reintegration planning, modernizing frontline staff training and investing in technological solutions. Renu was also responsible for leading Ontario’s response to the federal government’s legalization of recreational cannabis. This work at the Ministry of the Attorney General involved leading collaboration across government, First Nations communities, municipalities, police services, public health and education stakeholders, along with extensive engagement with Health Canada and Justice Canada. She also led the delivery of consumer and business services, regulatory compliance, and enforcement programs as Assistant Deputy Minister of Consumer Service Operations in MGCS.

Renu is a collaborative operational and policy leader and has demonstrated success in diverse regulatory and operational environments. She is politically astute and has a strong record in leading transformation. As a leader, Renu continuously strives to embed diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism into organizational practices, including as Executive Sponsor of Tamils in Public Service.

Renu holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts in English and History from the University of Toronto and has completed the Executive Development Program and Public Executive Program through Queen’s University.


Susanna Laaksonen-Craig

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Mines

Susanna Laaksonen-Craig became Deputy Minister of Mines on October 23, 2023.

Susanna is a seasoned executive leader with over 25 years’ experience in government, research, and development across Canada and abroad, as well as deep professional experience in energy, natural resources, change management and executive leadership.

Prior to joining the Ontario Public Service, Susanna served as Deputy Minister of Energy and Resources with the Government of Saskatchewan from March 2021, and before that as Director General for the National Research Council of Canada’s (NRC) Energy, Mining and Environment Research Centre.

Before joining the NRC in 2018, Susanna held several executive positions within the Government of British Columbia at the Assistant Deputy Minister and Executive Director level.

On an academic front, she worked as an assistant professor at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Forestry, and as the Assistant Director of the University of California Forest Products Laboratory. Since 2007 she has been an Adjunct Professor at the University of Toronto’s Daniels Faculty’s Forestry.

Susanna holds a master’s degree in forestry from the University of Helsinki and a PhD in Wildland Resource Science from the University of California at Berkeley.


Kate Manson-Smith

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Education

Kate Manson-Smith became Deputy Minister of Education in June 2023.

Kate previously served as Deputy Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing in December 2019, after serving as interim Deputy Minister, starting in August 2019.

Since joining the Ontario Public Service in 1998, Kate has held a number of executive roles. Most recently, Kate served as the Assistant Deputy Minister of the Local Government and Planning Policy Division at the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing (2014–2019) and prior to this, was the Assistant Deputy Minister of Health Promotion of the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care (2011–2014). She has also held executive roles at Cabinet Office and the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services.

Kate holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in History and Masters in Public Administration, both from Queen’s University.


Greg Meredith

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development

Greg Meredith became Deputy Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development in June 2022. He was the Deputy Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development since August 2020. He also served as Deputy Minister of Citizenship and Multiculturalism until October 2021.

Previously, he served as Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) as well as Deputy Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade.

Greg came to OMAFRA in 2017 from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, where he headed Federal-Provincial-Territorial Relations and held positions as Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) of Strategic Policy, ADM Financial Programs, and ADM Communications and Consultations. Greg also spent several years in the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (now Global Affairs) focusing on trade and investment policy and development.

Greg holds a Bachelor’s degree in political science from Carleton University, a Master’s degree in International Affairs from the Norman Patterson School of International Affairs and an MBA from the University of Ottawa. He is an alumnus of the Ivey Senior Public Sector Leader Program.


Maud Murray

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Red Tape Reduction

Maud Murray became the Deputy Minister of Red Tape Reduction in June 2022.

She previously served as the interim Deputy Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade (MEDJCT), from March 2022 to June 2022.

Prior to this appointment, she served as the Assistant Deputy Minister of the Office of Red Tape Reduction and Small Business Division at MEDJCT. In this role, Maud led the development of cross-cutting policies and strategies for regulatory innovation, compliance modernization and regulatory reform to reduce burdens on Ontario businesses. She also led partnerships with other ministries and levels of government to develop policies, strategies and solutions to support small and medium-sized businesses, and management of Ontario’s network of Small Business Enterprise Centres.

She began her public service career in 2005 as a summer law student, then articled and became counsel at the Ministry of the Attorney General’s Crown Law Office — Civil. Maud went on to become Legal Counsel in the Procurement Law Office and then Counsel at the Ontario Power Authority. She served as Deputy Legal Director for the ministries of Agriculture and Food, and of Rural Affairs. Maud was then Deputy Legal Director for the ministries of Government and Consumer Services, Citizenship and Immigration, and International Trade. She then became Legal Director for the ministries of Energy, Infrastructure, and MEDJCT, and for Small Business and Red Tape Reduction.

Maud is a proud Canadian and proud of her West African heritage, having immigrated from Ghana with her parents when she was 10 years old. She has an Honours Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Hispanic Studies from Trent University, a Master of Arts in Comparative Literature from the University of Western Ontario and an LLB from Osgoode Hall Law School.


Roda Muse

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Francophone Affairs

Roda Muse was the Secretary-General of the Canadian Commission for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The Canadian Commission for UNESCO serves as a bridge between Canadians and the vital work of the UNESCO, including the deployment and coordination of UNESCO programs and networks in Canada.

Before joining the Commission, Roda served as a senior public servant for 20+ years. In her last role, she served as a manager in the Department of Innovation, Sciences and Economic Development Canada, overseeing the development of strategic policy advice and recommendations on innovation, official languages, economic development, and mental health. Roda Muse also served as the Ontario regional director for Status of women Canada.

Among her many achievements was the partnership she struck in the early 2000s with the City of Ottawa, the federal public service, and the Centre d’Intégration, de Formation et de Développement Économique to support the integration of visible minority professionals into the federal public service.

In 2003, Roda co-founded Fondation Acacia, a charitable organization dedicated to fostering excellence in young visible minority Francophones through education and mentoring. She was also the first BIPOC elected as a school board trustee in the Francophone system in Ottawa, among other board of director roles for various organizations. Roda served as a Board Member at the Montfort Hospital and ACEPO Consortium of Centre Jules-Léger.

Roda holds a Master of Public Administration with a concentration in International Management from École nationale d’administration publique (ENAP). She has completed a Master of Education with a concentration in Enseignement du français langue étrangère from Université Paul Valéry - Montpellier in France. She also holds a Bachelor of Literature with a concentration in Modern Languages from Université de Picardie - Amiens in France.


Greg Orencsak

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Finance

Greg Orencsak became the Deputy Minister of Finance in June 2018.

Greg first joined the OPS in 1999 on an internship as an economist for the Ministry of Finance. Since then, he has held progressively senior positions in the public service. In November 2010, he became Associate Deputy Minister of the Office of the Budget and Treasury Board in the Ministry of Finance, where he was responsible for the coordination of the delivery of the annual Ontario budget.

He became Deputy Minister of Government Services in April 2014 and later that year became the Deputy Minister of Treasury Board Secretariat. Concurrently, he also served as Chair of the Public Service Commission, which ensures the effective management of human resources in the OPS. In 2017, he became Deputy Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development.

Directly before becoming Deputy Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development, Greg worked in the private sector as a partner in Ernst & Young’s Canadian advisory practice, where he served as the firm’s National Leader for Public Policy and Fiscal Innovation.


Keith Palmer

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Citizenship and Multiculturalism

Keith Palmer became the Deputy Minister of Citizenship and Multiculturalism in June 2023.

Keith is a seasoned leader with 33 years of experience in government with the past 21 years in various senior leadership roles at both the provincial and municipal levels. Keith’s extensive experience leading complex programs, organizations and associations throughout his career has focused on modernization and transformational management. Keith prides himself on being an inclusive and participatory leader who places an emphasis on building relationships, inclusivity, and leadership development.

Keith’s career in government, prior to joining the OPS, saw him serving numerous mayors and councils in Dufferin County and Wellington County as a Department Head and senior human services lead. Keith started his career as a Social Assistance Case Worker in York Region in the early 90’s where he provided services to the community’s most vulnerable. A past president of the Ontario Municipal Social Services Association (OMSSA), Keith served as the association’s first 2-year term president and was its first Black President in the associations history. In 2019, Keith was awarded the “Pattie More Human Services Integration Award”, one of OMSSA highest Awards.

Keith was the Assistant Deputy Minister of the Operational Support Division, Ministry of the Solicitor General and began his assignment on November 30, 2020. Prior to joining SOLGEN, Keith was leading the Social Assistance Operations Division as the Assistant Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS), including being a leader in developing an anti-racism plan for the Ministry. Keith continues to lead teams in a number of ways with emphasis on Leadership Development, Diversity, Inclusion and Equity, Organizational Culture Change and Leading without Titles. Most recently Keith was the Senior Executive Lead for the development of the Ministry of Solicitor General’s Leadership Development Program in Corrections.

With multiple degrees in Education and Sociology, Certificates in Criminology, Keith is a graduate of the University of Windsor and the University of Brock. Keith also holds his Certified Municipal Manager designation and is a graduate of the Ontario Management Development Program.


Deborah Richardson

Deputy Minister, Treasury Board Secretariat
Secretary of Treasury Board and Management Board of Cabinet

Deborah Richardson, LL.B, BA, became Deputy Minister of Treasury Board Secretariat, Secretary of Treasury Board and Management Board of Cabinet and Chair of the Public Service Commission in July 2021.

Previously, she has served as Deputy Solicitor General for Correctional Services and as the Deputy Minister of Indigenous Affairs.

Deborah is a seasoned intergovernmental affairs executive and Indigenous relationships expert. She began her career as an articling student in a criminal law firm in Ottawa before joining the finance industry. Her professional foray into Indigenous Affairs began as Executive Director of the Native Canadian Centre of Toronto in 1999.

Since 2004, Deborah has held progressively more senior positions in the federal and provincial public service, including Regional Director General for Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Assistant Deputy Minister for the Aboriginal Relationships and Ministry Partnerships division of the Ontario Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs, Assistant Deputy Minister at the Ring of Fire Secretariat at the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines and Deputy Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation.

Deborah is a proud Mi’gmaq woman with strong ties to her home community of Pabineau First Nation on the north shore of New Brunswick. Deborah and her husband, Bob, are proud parents of five children.


Alexandra Sutton

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Intergovernmental Affairs
Deputy Minister, Communications, Cabinet Office
Associate Secretary of the Cabinet

Alexandra became the Deputy Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs in January 2022. In July 2023, she assumed the additional roles of Deputy Minister of Communications and Associate Secretary of the Cabinet.

A bilingual career public servant, Alexandra previously held the position of Assistant Deputy Minister, Export Growth and International Representation at the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. In this role, she led Ontario’s international network of Trade and Investment Offices, delivered programs to drive export growth and led the ministry’s international marketing efforts to showcase the province as the best place to live, work and grow a business.

Prior to joining the Ontario Public Service in 2017, Alexandra held senior leadership roles in the Government of Canada, including Executive Director of the Canada 150 Federal Secretariat, where she oversaw the national celebrations for Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation. She also served as Senior Director, Major Events and Commemorations at the Department of Canadian Heritage and Chief of Staff to the President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. Alexandra was also a Director General of Communications and a member of the founding executive team at the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.

Alexandra studied History at the University of Lyon in France and earned a BTS in International Business. She has also completed the Executive Management Program at the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University.


Melissa Thomson

Deputy Minister, Long-Term Care and Seniors and Accessibility

Melissa Thomson became Deputy Minister of Long-Term Care and Seniors and Accessibility in June 2023.

As a strategist and values-driven leader, Melissa’s career has been dedicated to service, focusing on innovation and large-scale systems transformation across many sectors.

With a strong background in democratic reform, Melissa launched Ontario's first-ever policy on Citizen Engagement, led the development of the first-ever Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy, and led the government's Poverty Reduction Strategy.

While Assistant Deputy Minister of the Syrian Refugee Resettlement Secretariat, she collaborated across sectors to resettle the largest refugee cohort in Ontario's history. As Assistant Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services, she partnered with private, not-for-profit and community sectors to design and deliver innovative place- and person-centred services and programs through Ontario’s first-of-its kind Collective Impact initiative.

While Ontario’s Chief Drinking Water Inspector and Chief Compliance Officer, Melissa led Ontario’s largest compliance and enforcement team at the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks. She has also previously served as Ontario’s Fairness Commissioner.

In 2021, Melissa helped lead Ontario’s COVID‑19 Pandemic Response and Recovery team at the Ministry of Health, and subsequently served as Chief Administrative Officer and Assistant Deputy Minister at Cabinet Office.

In 2022/2023, she was briefly appointed Deputy Minister of Policy and Delivery in Cabinet Office, and effective June 19, 2023, was appointed Deputy Minister of Long-Term Care and Deputy Minister for Seniors and Accessibility.

Melissa is a past member of the Wellesley Institute Board of Directors, is an alumna of the Governor General’s Leadership Conference, and has been a life-long canoe tripper and competitive athlete. When not in Toronto, she is on the cottage dock with her husband and young son.


Drew Vanderduim

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry

Drew was appointed as Deputy Minister, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry on September 18, 2023. Prior to this appointment he was also acting Deputy Solicitor General, Correctional Services and acting Deputy Minister, Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services.

Drew has worked in the Ontario Public Service for more than 20 years and has demonstrated his strengths as a collaborative leader who empowers teams and is able to navigate challenging situations to deliver results in large scale operations environments.

He brings experience leading teams that focus on safety and protecting the public interest. He is a compassionate people leader who brings a breadth of experience including operational planning, capital planning and fiscal management.

He has held several key leadership positions with the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services and the Ministry of the Solicitor General, including as Chief Administrative Officer and Assistant Deputy Minister. He has been instrumental in the transformation, development and delivery of key social services, youth justice, child welfare, policing and corrections programs.

He is a graduate of Brock University and has completed executive development programs with the University of Western Ontario, Ivey School of Business.


Ali Veshkini

Acting Deputy Minister, Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade

Ali Veshkini became acting Deputy Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade in September 2023.

Previously, Ali was the Associate Deputy Minister in the Office of the Treasury Board at Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS). In this role, he supported the development and implementation of the government’s fiscal plan and provided strategic consideration and advice on provincial funding and ministry budget allocations impacting about $190 billion per year.

Before joining TBS, Ali was the Associate Deputy Minister at the Ministry of the Solicitor General (SOLGEN). There he oversaw and directly delivered construction projects of over $4 billion in complex operational infrastructure and was a leader in using innovative construction methods for the province. Ali also provided strategic oversight on large operating budgets of over $2 billion and was the co-lead on Ontario’s pandemic response, establishing the mobile and community covid vaccine distribution plans.

After graduating from York University with a Political Science and Public Policy degree, he began his career at the Ontario Public Service in the Business and Fiscal Planning Branch at the Ministry of the Environment. Ali then worked as a Senior Policy Advisor for the federal government before completing a law degree at the University of Ottawa. He then practised at a full-service law firm, focusing on corporate/commercial law.

Ali returned to the OPS in 2008 and held various Director roles. These included Executive Lead/Director of the Death Investigation Oversight Council, where he was responsible for establishing the agency, and Director of Capital Infrastructure at the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services.

Before becoming the Chief Administrative Officer at SOLGEN in 2018, Ali worked for two years at Infrastructure Ontario as Senior Vice President, Project Management and Cost/Budget Office.

Throughout his career, he has taken great pride in public service and building inclusive and delivery-focused organizations.


David Wai

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Colleges and Universities

David Wai became Deputy Minister of Colleges and Universities in June 2023.

He was previously the Deputy Minister of Citizenship and Multiculturalism, a role he began in October 2021.

David has held a number of executive positions in the OPS, including the Assistant Deputy Minister of Health, Social, Education and Children’s Policy at Cabinet Office where he supported the Health and Social Policy Cabinet Committee as well as the Central Coordination Table. As the Assistant Deputy Minister of Financial Services Policy at the Ministry of Finance (MOF), he led the creation and launch of the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario and led regulatory policy in financial services sectors such as capital markets and insurance. He has also held senior positions in economic development, trade and pensions. He is passionate about building a more diverse and inclusive workplace and led the MOF Inclusion Committee during his time at MOF.

Prior to joining the OPS, David worked in the capital markets industry with Fiera Capital and RBC and in management consulting with Deloitte. He holds a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation, is a Professional Engineer (P.Eng.) and holds degrees in Engineering Physics and Economics.


Dr. Catherine Zahn

Deputy Minister, Ministry of Health

Dr. Catherine Zahn became Deputy Minister of Health in September 2021.

Dr. Zahn has a 35-year history of contributions to the Ontario health care sector, as a practicing physician, and in progressive leadership roles at the University Health Network. Before becoming Deputy Minister, she served as President and CEO of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) from 2009 to 2021.

Throughout her career, Dr. Zahn has worked to promote equitable access to health care for Ontarians, including those with mental illness. She has made numerous contributions through her leadership in hospital integration, technology assessment, chronic disease management, stroke care coordination and mental health care system integration.

Dr. Zahn is a professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto (U of T) and a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. She received her MD (honours) from the Faculty of Medicine at U of T, where she completed her residency training in neurology. She also holds a Master of Science in health administration from U of T and has completed the Directors Education Program at the Rotman School of Management. Recent honours include membership in the Order of Canada, Doctor of Laws degrees (honoris causa) from Western University, (London, Ontario) and Ryerson University, (Toronto, Ontario), the Bryden Award for Outstanding Achievement (York University) and the Faculty of Medicine Lifetime Achievement Award (U of T).


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