Denise Amyot is the President and CEO of Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) which is the national voice of Canada’s publicly supported colleges, institutes, cégeps and polytechnics. She is a passionate advocate for Canadian post-secondary education and a proven leader with extensive experience in non-governmental organisations as well as the public sector.
Denise Amyot came to CICan following a distinguished career in the public service, where she occupied a number of high profile leadership positions. She served as President and CEO of the Canada Science and Technology Museums Corporation, a federal crown corporation which includes three national science museums. She was also the Senior Vice-President of the Leadership and Talent Management Sector at the Canada Public Service Agency (now Treasury Board), leading and managing leadership development programs, and developing policies for employees and executives throughout the Public Service of Canada. Before moving into management positions, she began her career as an educator and worked in Ontario, Quebec and the Northwest Territories to teach and develop a variety of pedagogical resource materials.
Parallel to her work at CICan, Denise Amyot is also currently Chair of the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics (WFCP) and the Chair of the Advisory Committee of the Institute of Science, Society and Policy (ISSP). She also sits on the Human Resources Policy Committee of the Chamber of Commerce and on the Advisory Council of the Schulich Centre for Excellence in Public Management at Western University. She has also been appointed as a director by the Government of Ontario to the Ontario Trillium Foundation, Canada’s largest foundation.
Industry Expertise (13)
International Trade and Development
Museums and Institutions
Professional Training and Coaching
Areas of Expertise (6)
Non - Profit Organization
Non Profit Advocacy
Postsecondary Education Administration
Public Sector Excellence Life Time Achievement Award
Awarded by the Canadian Public Sector Quality Association / Excellence Canada
Leadership Award in Innovation
Awarded by the Institute of Public Administration of Canada for the Canadian Immigrant Integration Program (CIIP)
Open Text Global Star Award in Innovation (2013)
In recognition of the creation of Public Service Without Borders
Canadian Government Executive Magazine Leading Management Change Award (2013) (professional)
Awarded for achieving organizational transformation at the Canada Science and Technology Museums Corporation
International Award in Leadership in Museum (2012)
Roy L. Shafer Leading Edge Award by the Association of Science and Technology Centres
People’s Award, Canada Public Service Agency (2008) (professional)
Recognizing leadership in the public sector
President’s Award of Excellence in Communications Leadership (2006)
Awarded by the International Association of Business Communicators, Ottawa
University of Ottawa: Master, Education
Université du Québec: B. Arts, Social Studies
University of Ottawa: Bachelors, Education
University of Ottawa: Bachelors, Sciences (Biology)
Loyalist College: Diploma (Honoris Causa), Applied Arts and Technology
Media Appearances (7)
Innovation review welcomed, but funding needed: post-secondary research experts
The Hill Times print
As the government conducts the Horizontal Business Innovation and Clean Technology Review into its innovation programs, post-secondary research advocates say more funding is needed to allow programs and the institutions that use them to reach their fullest innovation potential.
Setting up the next generation of innovators with the skills to succeed
The Globe and Mail print
Q&A with Denise Amyot, president and CEO of Colleges and Institutes Canada
Collèges et instituts Canada : Une institution et un système ouverts sur le monde
Diplomat Investissement print
Entrevue avec Denise Amyot publiée dans le Magazine Diplomat Investissement.
Globe and Mail print
Judging by the number of green initiatives and innovations, Canada’s colleges and institutes appear determined to show the world they are fertile ground for furthering environmental sustainability. Their green activities are varied and diverse, affecting the curriculum, areas of research, campus management and community outreach, says Denise Amyot, president and CEO of Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan).
CICan barnstorms innovation and science consultations, releases economic impact study
Research Money online
Colleges and their graduates are estimated to have contributed more than $190 billion in added income to the Canadian economy in FY14-15 or 12.7% of GDP and are seeking additional support for their research and innovation activities to boost contributions even further. Colleges and Institutes Canada made their case in submissions to both the Innovation Agenda and Fundamental Science Review panels.
Training tomorrow’s workforce
Corporate Knights online
Canada’s clean technology industry is growing at four times the rate of the overall economy, putting increasing responsibility on educators to prepare workers for the transition to a low-carbon future.
Universities call for more financial support for research, while colleges eye bigger share of funding
The Hill Times
Advocates for Canadian post-secondary institutions are calling on the federal government to improve on the expanded investments in research seen in Budget 2016 to ensure the country can keep pace with surging global competitors.
Faced with such rapid and profound disruptions, the time has come to rethink how and when we learn and acquire new skills to prepare ourselves for an ever-changing workplace. We urgently need to embrace a culture of lifelong learning.
Colleges, cégeps, polytechnics, and institutes have become go-to problem-solvers for thousands of entrepreneurs like Ke Wang, and now host more than 400 specialized research centres and labs serving communities across the country.
Les collèges communautaires, les cégeps et les instituts de technologie sont devenus pour des milliers de PME comme Capital Property Guardians, des établissements incontournables auxquels s’adresser lorsqu’ils ont des problèmes à résoudre. Ces établissements hébergent actuellement plus de 400 centres et laboratoires de recherche spécialisés. Malheureusement, les politiques fédérales et le financement en place ne répondent plus à la demande, ce qui force ces établissements à rejeter de plus en plus de demandes de soutien d’innovateurs potentiels.
Skills and innovation -- core elements of the college/institute mandate -- have emerged as absolutely fundamental to the government's agenda. They have been the focus of several consultations and more than a few reports, including a recent series of recommendations by the finance minister's Advisory Council on Economic Growth.
Since his government’s election, Prime Minister Trudeau has frequently reminded Canadians that economic development and fighting climate change are not mutually exclusive and, in fact, create new opportunities for growth. This transition to a greener, more ecologically minded economy is indeed taking shape, with new technologies and processes reshaping activities in almost all sectors.
With indigenous peoples among the fastest growing demographic in Canada, providing education opportunities that ensure they have the skills they need to succeed is more than a social responsibility, it is also an economic imperative. Collaboration between educators and leaders in the business sector is therefore key in achieving real progress.
Across Canada, inventors, researchers and entrepreneurs are dreaming up the world of tomorrow. Through bold acts of ingenuity, they are continuously pushing the boundaries of both what we know and what we can achieve, as individuals and as a country. These innovators, wherever they are found, are critical to Canada’s success but it is important to realize that they cannot do it alone – innovation is driven by partnerships.
Erin Konsmo, a Metis, is doing great things to improve the health of her community. She has found success breaking down conversation barriers with youth about a variety of sensitive topics in her work with the Native Youth Sexual Health Network. Leading workshops on traditional indigenous practices like beading, she has been able to have important conversations about safer sex, two-spirited experiences and the history of Indigenous people in Canada.
The economy is clearly the central issue of the current election campaign, yet a vital topic has been absent from the debate so far. We've heard much talk of stimulating the economy, supporting small business and fostering innovation, but we have not heard the parties' vision for the role post-secondary education can play in driving growth across the country.
Depuis près de 50 ans, le réseau collégial du Québec fait figure de chef de file en matière d'éducation postsecondaire, tant au niveau national qu'international. Fort de ses 48 cégeps, le système québécois et l'appui qu'il a généralement reçu du gouvernement provincial font bien des envieux ailleurs au pays où il demeure un modèle sur le plan de l'accessibilité et de la qualité des programmes.