Tanya Woods

Vice President, Innovation & Skills
Business Council of Canada

Valerie Walker is Vice President of Innovation and Skills at the Business Council of Canada, a not-for-profit, non-partisan organization composed of the CEOs of Canada’s leading enterprises. The Business Council engages in an active program of research, consultation, and advocacy on issues of national importance to the economic and social fabric of Canada. In her role, Val provides leadership on innovation, competitiveness, and labour market issues, and supports the work of the Business Higher Education Roundtable. Launched in 2015, the Roundtable represents some of Canada’s largest companies and leading post-secondary institutions. Composed of leaders from the private sector, universities, colleges and polytechnics, the Roundtable works to support young Canadians as they transition from education to the workplace, strengthen research collaboration between industry and institutions, and help Canadian employers as they adapt to the economy of the future. Prior to joining the Business Council, Val was the Director of Policy at Mitacs, where she was responsible for maintaining strategic relationships with government and policy leaders on innovation policy and promoting Mitacs as a key player in Canada’s innovation ecosystem. She has a PhD from McGill University and is an alumnus of the Government of Canada’s Recruitment of Policy Leaders Program.