CEOs back 2017 Canadian “CEO for a Day” student initiative as global participation nears 1,000


Nineteen CEOs from Canada’s leading organizations – including Kellogg’s, Martinrea, PayPal Canada, Cossette, GSK, Vancity, Alberta Innovates and Amnesty International – are backing an initiative giving students personal insight into what it takes to lead a major company, and make it to the top of the business world. Odgers Berndtson, a leading global executive search firm, has announced the Canadian line up of companies and top bosses for 2017. This brings the number of CEOs and students who have participated in the firm’s unique CEOx1Day initiative to more than 1,000 worldwide.

Undergraduate students from Canadian universities are eligible to apply to CEOx1Day until October 27th, gaining a rare, one-to-one opportunity to shadow the working day of a chief executive with insight into a full range of business challenges. Odgers Berndtson launched the program as a way of uncovering and developing Canada’s future leaders, as the firm is heavily invested in this group and wanted to provide them an opportunity to develop their leadership skills as they begin their career journey.

“Almost all industry sectors and companies are facing the challenges that come with increased globalization and massive digital transformation, and this is changing what’s required of an effective top leader,” said Rob Quinn, Partner at Odgers Berndtson. “We’re expanding CEO for a Day internationally because it enables today’s leaders to give back in a direct and personal way, while also challenging them with the unusual experience of sharing a day with an ambitious young person who can offer valuable insights into the future of leadership.”

Ana Dominguez, President of Campbell Co. of Canada, supports this notion. A past CEOx1Day participant, she believes that students who are about to enter the workforce are a tremendous resource for executives. “Being in touch with this energized group is a way to inject new life into seasoned businesses, and offers a rare opportunity to challenge the products, processes, and policies that might seem tried and true,” said Ms. Dominguez. “My CEO for a day experience served as a strong reminder that millennials are indeed the generation that will turn corporate Canada on its head, so executives need to do everything possible to engage and support professional youth.”

Participating CEOs include:


Debra Kerby, President & CEO, Canadian Feed the Children
Lisa Kimmel, President & CEO, Edelman Canada
Carol Stewart, President & CEO, Kellogg Canada Inc.
Pat D'Eramo, President & CEO, Martinrea
Frederic Landtmeters, President & CEO, Molson Coors Canada
Paul Parisi, President, PayPal Canada
John Ferguson, President & CEO, Purolator Inc.


Ken Keelor, Chief Executive Officer, Calgary Co-operative Association Limited
Elana Rosenfeld, Co-Founder & CEO, Kicking Horse Coffee (located in Invermere, BC)


Laura J. Kilcrease, Chief Executive Officer, Alberta Innovates


Melanie Dunn, CEO, Cossette
Paul Lirette, President, Canada Pharmaceuticals, GSK


Nathalie Tremblay, President & CEO, Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec


Stephen Cornish, Incoming Chief Executive Officer, David Suzuki Foundation
Jeff More, President & CEO, MineSense Technologies Ltd.
Tamara Vrooman, President & CEO, Vancity


Jayne Stoyles, Executive Director, Amnesty International
Tom Anselmi, President & CEO, Ottawa Senators
Leah Lawrence, President & CEO, Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC)

The success of CEOx1Day is made possible by Odgers Berndtson’s supportive partners, including McKinsey & Company, and Hogan Assessments, who provide a critical component of the rigorous recruitment process that Odgers Berndtson uses to identify Canada’s top future leaders. TalentEgg and the Globe & Mail, are also valued partners who are helping to spread the word about the program’s benefits to ambitious students, CEOs and the business community across the country.



About Odgers Berndtson

Odgers Berndtson is a leading global executive search and leadership advisory firm with more than 200 partners in 27 countries. We provide our clients with a broad range of integrated talent solutions – including executive search, executive interim and leadership assessment services – to help them grow and compete in today’s challenging environment. We also invest in the development of Canada’s up and coming leaders with unique programs such as CEOx1Day and our Business Leadership for Finance Executives program, run in partnership with the Rotman School of Management. More than 50% of our clients have also been our candidates – a testament to the relationships that we build across the talent spectrum.


For More Information
Jacqueline Foley, Chief Marketing Officer
Odgers Berndtson
T: 416-366-1990 x362