Diversity of Governor in Council appointees

The Government of Canada has implemented an appointment process that is transparent and merit-based, strives for gender parity, and seeks to ensure that Indigenous peoples and minority groups are properly represented in positions of leadership. We continue to search for Canadians who reflect public sector values of respect for democracy, people, integrity, stewardship, and excellence.

Individuals appointed by the Governor in Council (GIC) play an important role in Canada’s democracy by serving on commissions, boards, Crown corporations, agencies and tribunals across the country. The responsibilities are diverse, ranging from making adjudicative decisions and providing advice and recommendations on a wide variety of issues to the management of large, diversified corporations. GIC appointees have a direct impact on the lives of citizens and make a significant contribution to Canadian society. This specific process pertains to over 200 federal organizations; certain positions, such as judges, will retain distinct nomination processes reflecting their unique functions.Footnote 1

In general, most selection processes are guided by the following principles:


Selection processes are open to all Canadians, to provide them with an opportunity – should they be interested and have the required qualifications – to participate in their democratic institutions by serving as GIC appointees.


Clear information about the requirements and steps involved in the selection process are readily available to the public, in order to reach as many Canadians as possible and attract a strong and diverse field of highly qualified candidates. Appointments are publically available on the Privy Council Office Orders in Council database.


The selection process is designed to identify highly qualified candidates who meet the needs of the organization and are able to perform the duties of the position to which they would be appointed. It seeks individuals who have the qualifications (education, experience, knowledge, skills, and abilities) and personal suitability to fill positions, and who are able to meet any statutory and/or other conditions that may be required. The selection criteria, including required qualifications, personal suitability and statutory requirements, and/or other conditions are indicated on the Notice of Appointment Opportunity..


Recruitment strategies seeks to attract qualified candidates who will also help to reflect Canada’s diversity in terms of linguistic, regional, and employment equity groups (i.e., women, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities) as well as members of ethnic and cultural groups. With few exceptions, the government seeks to appoint bilingual candidates to GIC positions.

As of July 18, 2019, the Government has concluded over 1,280 appointments to administrative tribunals, agencies, boards, commissions, international organizations, and Crown corporations according to these standards. Of those appointees, over 53% identify as women, over 12% as visible minorities, around 9% as Indigenous peoples, and over 3% as Canadians with disabilities.Footnote 2Footnote 3

For information on some recent Governor in Council appointments: 

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