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New board members announced

Calgary Economic Development (CED) and the Opportunity Calgary Investment Fund (OCIF) held their Annual General Meetings before Calgary City Council on Tuesday and announced new additions to their Boards of Directors.

Navin Arora, Executive Vice-president, TELUS Business Solutions; Vern Yu, Executive Vice President and President, Liquids Pipelines, Enbridge; and Rasha El-Malki Harrison, Vice President, Client Service Management, Shareworks by Morgan Stanley, are all joining CED’s Board for three-year terms. Hanif Joshaghani, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Symend; and Sebastien Gittens, Partner, Bennett Jones, will be joining OCIF’s Board.  

CED and OCIF have committed to the Government of Canada’s 50-30 Challenge, which calls for Boards of Directors to have at least 50 per cent women and 30 per cent members from underrepresented groups. This challenge is one step CED and OCIF are taking to increase diversity and ensure there is more equity and inclusion in their organizations.

“Calgary is a great city because our people have diverse backgrounds and perspectives. The appointments to both the CED and OCIF Boards strengthen the diversity of viewpoints and business acumen and make us better,” said Joe Lougheed, Board Chair, Calgary Economic Development. “We are not where we need to be yet, but we are working on becoming a more inclusive organization that represents everyone in our city.”

Despite the challenges of COVID-19, Calgary is seeing momentum in its economic recovery with major investments in the tech sector, record venture capital investment, strong energy prices, GDP growth and declining unemployment.

“We’ve seen so much momentum in the first six months of 2021,” said Mark Blackwell, Board Chair, Opportunity Calgary Investment. “Now, OCIF has the ability to deploy capital more effectively to local entrepreneurs and support others through investing in incubators and accelerators, helping us accelerate our recovery.”

Representatives from CED and OCIF also shared the 2020 Annual Reports with City Council. Copies of both reports can be found on the CED and OCIF websites.

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