MacDonald brings extensive experience as an innovative leader and strategic thinker with a long history of capacity building in various roles that have spanned the globe. Skilled in engaging key stakeholders across international networks to accomplish outstanding results, she has led projects in a wide variety of industries including telecommunications, public sector, power and utilities, marine transportation and seafood with a focus on large public companies. Her experience, combined with her demonstrated leadership in information technology, governance, risk management and process efficiency and effectiveness, make her an ideal leader for this exciting initiative.
The OSC is an industry-led collaboration that is created around a critical mass of ocean-based companies in Atlantic Canada to tackle the shared challenges of multiple ocean sectors through a collaborative program of innovation activities. The OSC is a national undertaking, with investment from companies in eight provinces and one territory, and linkages initiated with indigenous groups and international partners.
The Ocean Supercluster is one of five superclusters receiving federal support as a part of the Innovation Superclusters Initiative. The Initiative has allocated a small number of high-value, strategic investments in the form of non-repayable contributions to industry-led consortia. Selected superclusters will benefit from contributions totaling up to $950 million in funding that will be matched with private sector investment for maximum impact.
The core strategic priorities for the OSC are to formulate a shared innovation map to guide technology leadership projects, and to undertake a program of cluster building to enhance the quality of collaboration, while also extending their benefits widely. As the inaugural CEO, MacDonald will lead the forging of lasting relationships amongst the diverse stakeholders. She will also steward the necessary change and innovation to advance the OSC’s common agenda and lead the management and commercialization of new related R&D, science and technology activities in Canada’s Atlantic region.
Over the past 20 years, MacDonald has held progressive leadership roles in Australia, Hong Kong and Canada. Most recently, MacDonald was the first Chief Audit Executive for Deloitte Global and was responsible for building internal audit function for Global. During this time, she also maintained a role as Atlantic Risk Advisory Partner for Deloitte LLP in St. John’s, a position she held since 2010, providing leadership in the areas of cybersecurity, governance, risk management, internal audit and external audit, to both large and small organizations within the private and public sectors.
“It is an honour to be the inaugural CEO of the Ocean Supercluster and to have the opportunity to lead an organization that will have such a dramatic impact on Canada’s ocean economy,” says MacDonald. “Together, with the support of our diverse partners, I look forward to building on the current momentum to realize the untapped potential of our oceans.”
With a long track record of community and volunteer leadership, MacDonald is currently the Chair and Acting CEO for the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Technology Industries (NATI) and the Chair of the Audit and Finance Committee, BioCanRX.
Originally from Ontario, with family roots in Nova Scotia, and a graduate of the University of Ottawa, MacDonald currently lives in St. John’s NL with her husband and two children. She holds numerous designations including Institute of Corporate Directors, Director (ICD.D), Certified in Risk Management Assurance (CRMA), Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) and Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CA).
MacDonald succeeds Matt Hebb, who became interim CEO in April 2018, leading the interim management team.
“Matt has done an outstanding job of laying the foundation for the next steps for the Ocean Supercluster. We are grateful for the time, energy and leadership he has dedicated to this initiative over the past few months,” says OSC Board member John Risley.
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