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Chief Executive Officer

Anywhere in Western Canada

Are you passionate about the role technology/high-performance computing can play in solving some of the world’s biggest problems? Are you a skilled operator and leader able to build consensus across the public, private and not-for-profit (NFP) domain? Are you interested in a unique opportunity to lead a critical organization providing high performance computing services to world class research institutions and researchers in Western Canada?

Operating in Western Canada, WestGrid is a not-for-profit, government-funded organization, and is one of the four regional partners of Compute Canada. WestGrid provides Compute Canada’s Advanced Research Computing services to its members: universities and research centers in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. WestGrid’s vision is to be a catalyst for digitally enabled research and development in order to accelerate innovation and discovery in Western Canada. The mission is to provide its stakeholders with the most advanced computing facilities, services, data management and technical experts.

WestGrid enables research in Canada to overcome some of its biggest scientific challenges, such as improving disease diagnosing and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, by providing software for big data analysis through different methods such as data mining, data storage, file transfer and simulation analysis. WestGrid also acts as a place of communication for its customers in order to promote research collaboration across Western Canada.

Reporting to the Board, the CEO will lead a very talented team to build and execute on a strategy that will continue to position WestGrid as an indispensable participant in game-changing research and innovation in Western Canada.

This role can be based anywhere in Western Canada with an expectation for significant travel across the country.

Key Responsibilities

With an impressive balance between EQ and IQ, the CEO will be the face of the organization, interacting regionally, nationally, and globally with a wide variety of industry counterparts, government representatives, and funding organizations, all while ensuring his/her team are receiving sound leadership resulting in reliable operations and an overall high-level of customer satisfaction to those served by WestGrid.

As the organization moves into the next phase in its evolution, the CEO will also aim to identify new, and expand existing sources of funding, which might include philanthropy and commercial partnerships. There will also be a requirement to ensure WestGrid continues to operate as a high-quality organization with strong governance and financial oversight.

Candidate Profile Sought

To ensure success in the role, the CEO must demonstrate superior interpersonal savvy, while possessing experience across operations management, people leadership, and stakeholder engagement. As comfortable as the CEO is working within WestGrid, s/he must also embrace opportunities to function as the external ambassador for the organization, which entails meaningful interaction and collaboration with WestGrid’s broad range of stakeholders.

In addition, we will prioritize the following key skills and experience within the prospective candidate:

  • A minimum of 8 years of senior management experience, ideally gained within both private and public sectors (including academia and/or research-oriented organizations). This should include demonstrable financial literacy (including budget/P&L management) and experience leading high-performance teams.
  • Experience working for or alongside government-funded not-for-profits, with an understanding of processes related to securing grants and funding.
  • Experience in an environment with high-performance computing in academic and research entities, and understanding of the constraints and challenges those organizations face.
  • An ability to build constructive relationships with multiple stakeholder groups, and to deftly navigate and establish ‘win-win’ outcomes where there are diverse and/or competing agendas.

If the opportunity to lead an organization providing critical services to leading global research institutions interests you, and you meet the criteria above, we would be delighted to discuss further. WestGrid and Odgers Berndtson are committed to employment equity and diversity in the workplace and welcome applications from all qualified candidates.

To apply in confidence, please submit your resume online via the Odgers Berndtson website. For further information, please contact Callum Wallace at

We look forward to hearing from you.