As an independent, non-partisan policy catalyst, CAPI brings insight, evidence and balance to emerging issues.
We provide a neutral place to hold dialogues and generate perspectives among leaders across the food system.

Leadership change at CAPI

OTTAWA, Dec. 13, 2016 — The Canadian Agri-Food Policy Institute (CAPI) announced today that David McInnes is stepping down after eight years as President and CEO. To ensure a smooth succession process, Mr. McInnes will continue to lead the Institute through March 2017.

"We are grateful for David's passion and dedication during his tenure as CEO," said Ted Bilyea, Chair of CAPI's Board of Directors. "Under his leadership, CAPI has become a national catalyst for dialogue on a host of emerging issues facing Canada's agri-food sector. He defined key elements of a national food policy, first by advancing the need for a bold, inspirational goal to galvanize change across the food system, and then by tying the sector's economic prospects to consumer health and environmental sustainability."

Mr. Bilyea praised Mr. McInnes' efforts to signal the need for consumer-focused and industry-led strategies backed by good policy, including one for Canada's beef sector that garnered support among key industry players. "And CAPI's extensive research on the importance of Canada's food processors brought national attention to the country's largest manufacturing sector. He also identified new ways to position the Canada food brand and enhance food exports to China — ideas that have since been adopted by governments."

Among other work, Mr. McInnes turned CAPI's attention to the need for the agri-food sector to foster genuine trust with consumers, and co-hosted a recent major national forum on the challenge. A primary outcome of that gathering was a recognition that how we value and manage natural capital — our soil, air and water — is vital to retaining trust and ensuring the sector's future. "CAPI's latest work may well define a competitive advantage for the next generation of Canada's agri-food sector," said Mr. Bilyea.

Mr. McInnes, who was appointed President and CEO in 2009, said he is pleased with the progress CAPI has made as both a research institute and a forum for a national conversation. "While there will always be more to do, I set out to establish a credible and trusted place to engage people and exchange ideas on policy and strategy," said Mr. McInnes. "With five years remaining in its initial mandate, CAPI has a solid platform on which to grow and the time is right to pass the torch." Following his departure, Mr. McInnes will remain as a special advisor to the CAPI Board of Directors.

"CAPI has been an incredible and fulfilling experience because of the people I have met," Mr. McInnes said. "I have been inspired by the innovators who produce and supply our food, by the broad thinkers who have sought out diverse partners from across the food system, and by the policy entrepreneurs who are trying to make a real difference. So many people are creating positive change that I can only feel optimistic about the potential of Canada's agri-food sector to make an even greater contribution to Canada's economy and to our society's well-being."

CAPI has established a CEO Search Committee led by Vice Chair Michel Saint-Pierre and Director John F.T. Scott and assisted by Kenniff & Racine Executive Search.

About CAPI
CAPI is an independent, non-partisan and non-government research catalyst. We bring leaders together. We provide balanced perspectives. We present strategic choices. Based in Ottawa, CAPI was established as a not-for-profit corporation in 2004 by the federal government and is guided by a diverse Board of Directors and an Advisory Committee.

For more information, please contact:
David McInnes
President & Chief Executive Officer
Canadian Agri-Food Policy Institute
613-759-1038 or 866-534-7593

Ted Bilyea

John F.T. Scott
Director, Search Committee member

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