News /

Candace Laing to Head Canadian Chamber of Commerce 

Candace Laing to Head Canadian Chamber of Commerce 

Candace Laing will become the new President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Canada’s largest business network, on September 1.

OTTAWA, July 10, 2024 – Candace Laing will become the new President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Canada’s largest business network, on September 1.

Born and raised in Saskatchewan, where her family maintains a longstanding farming operation, Ms. Laing brings her experience as a senior executive with more than two decades of experience with both the private and public sectors.

During her ten years with Nutrien and its predecessor company, PotashCorp, Ms. Laing served on Nutrien’s executive team as Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, and as Vice President of Sustainability and Stakeholder Relations. She had global responsibility for sustainability strategy and oversaw government and community relations. She was a key member of the integration team that merged two legacy Canadian companies to form the global entity that became Nutrien. She is known for her focus on ensuring people strategies are aligned with organizational business strategy.

In addition to her extensive private sector experience, Ms. Laing offers a strong background with the Chamber movement and the Canadian Chamber itself. She first joined the Canadian Chamber’s board of directors in 2019 and served as Vice-Chair from 2021 to 2022, becoming the elected Chair of the Board of Directors in 2022. As Chair, Ms. Laing was a leader of governance reform and modernization of the Board.  

“We’re thrilled to welcome Candace as the new CEO,” said Penny Wise, Chair of the CEO Search Committee and Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors. “The Canadian Chamber conducted an extensive search that drew a wide range of candidates with impressive experience in government and business. We are grateful to all of them for their interest. What set Candace apart was her experience in both business and the chamber movement and her vision for the Canadian Chamber’s future as a champion for Canadian businesses.

“Candace is a next-generation leader with a strong Canadian business background. She has extensive experience making decisions across complex organizations, which will help us build on our existing strengths and meet the challenges facing Canadian businesses and families. She is exceptionally well equipped to partner with a broad range of stakeholders, including chambers, boards of trade, associations, and government.”

“I’m honoured to take on this new role at such an important time,” said Ms. Laing. “Both my work with the Canadian Chamber and my experience in business have shown me our country’s enormous potential, but now more than ever, Canada’s businesses of all sizes need a champion like the Canadian Chamber.

I strongly believe that solutions to our greatest economic challenges are found at the community level, and I want to ensure we are focused on the critical role local chambers, boards of trade and businesses play in our economy. The positive influence businesses have on the lives of everyday Canadians is the grassroots thinking that should inform federal policymaking and help create a better life for all Canadians.

Current Chamber President and CEO, Perrin Beatty, who leaves his post on August 30, welcomed the news of Ms. Laing’s appointment.

“I’ve had the privilege of working closely with Candace for the last five years, and the search committee has made an outstanding choice. She’s smart, energetic and committed. She’s well-known by our team and by the Chamber Network. She brings with her an extensive business network, and she understands the needs of businesses of all sizes. There’s nobody who’s better qualified to take the Canadian Chamber to the next level.”

Ms. Laing has resigned from the Chair position as she prepares to take up the President and CEO role, based in Ottawa, on the cusp of the Canadian Chamber’s 100th anniversary. The Board is considering next steps to fill the Chair’s duties until the election of a new Chair at the AGM in October.

Click here.

Candace Laing is an executive leader with progressive leadership experience in multiple sectors, including mining, manufacturing, agriculture, education, and healthcare.

Candace’s career spans over two decades, encompassing roles in both private and public sector organizations. She also has a strong entrepreneurial background with a focus on strategic business initiatives that foster long-term value and high-performance cultures. Most notably, Candace worked for more than ten years with Nutrien, leading both the Sustainability and Human Resources functions and serving as a member of the Executive Leadership Team. She played a pivotal role in launching Nutrien’s environment, social, and governance (ESG) efforts and, through her most recent role as the organization’s Chief Human Resources Officer, focused on ensuring people strategies and inclusion initiatives were aligned with business strategy.

She first joined the Canadian Chamber’s Board of Directors in 2019 and served as Vice-Chair from 2021 to 2022, assuming the role of Chair of the Board of Directors in 2022. She was on the Board when the Chamber developed its Chamber 2025 Strategic Plan—a transformational mandate to create a reimagined and renewed Canadian Chamber.

Candace is passionate about ensuring healthy organizations support a strong economy that can serve societal needs. She is proud to have grown up in Saskatchewan, where her family maintains a longstanding farming operation.

Candace is a Fellow of Chartered Professionals in Human Resources (FCPHR). She holds a Bachelor of Commerce with Distinction and a Graduate Certificate in Public Policy Analysis from the University of Saskatchewan. Additionally, she has a Graduate Certificate in Corporate Sustainability and Innovation from Harvard University and a Master of Arts in Leadership from Royal Roads University. 

About the Canadian Chamber of Commerce — The Future of Business Success 

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce is Canada’s largest and most activated business network — representing over 400 chambers of commerce and boards of trade and more than 200,000 business of all sizes, from all sectors of the economy and from every part of the country — working to create the conditions for our collective success. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce is the undisputed champion and catalyst for the future of business success. From working with government on economy-friendly policy to providing services that inform commerce and enable trade, we give each of our members more of what they need to succeed: insight into markets, competitors and trends, influence over the decisions and policies that drive business success and impact on business and economic performance.   

Karl Oczkowski 
Senior Director, Corporate Communications and PR 
613.238.4000 (2231) 

Amy Orfanakos
Vice President, Engagement and Communications

Share this