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Apr 26

Electrifying Canada’s Automobile Sector

The Future of Canada’s Auto Sector Webinar Series with Brian Kingston, Megan Nichols and Jason Rakochy

Sponsored by:

C.D. Howe Institute events and webinars are open to members and their guests.

Please contact Tammy Trepanier, Senior Event Planner, to register: ttrepanier@cdhowe.org.

Brian Kingston, President and Chief Executive Officer, Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association

Brian Kingston is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association (CVMA). The CVMA represents Canada’s leading manufacturers of light and heavy duty motor vehicles. Its membership includes FCA Canada, Inc., Ford Motor Company of Canada, Limited, and General Motors of Canada Company.

Prior to joining the CVMA, Brian was Vice President of Policy, Fiscal and International, at the Business Council of Canada where he led the Council’s economic policy priorities and global engagement. From 2009 to 2012 he served in the federal government with positions at the Department of Finance, Global Affairs Canada, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, the Treasury Board Secretariat, and the Privy Council Office.

In addition to his accomplishments in business and government, Brian is active in the non-profit sector including as past president of the Ottawa Economics Association and as a current board member of the Banff Forum.

Brian holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Carleton University, a master’s degree in international affairs from the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs and an MBA from Ivey Business School.


Megan Nichols, Director General, Environmental Policy, Transport Canada

Megan Nichols is the Director General of Environmental Policy at Transport Canada, where she leads the department’s efforts to mitigate the environmental impacts of transportation and increase resilience of the sector to climate change.

Megan joined Transport from Natural Resources Canada, where she was Director General in the Lands and Minerals Sector, with responsibility for the leadership of Canada’s mining policy.

From 2012-2017, Megan held a number of positions at Public Safety Canada. In these roles she revitalized the department’s stakeholder engagement function, negotiated a new preclearance treaty with the U.S., and represented the Department in numerous international fora.  

Before joining Public Safety, she spent six years designing and managing public infrastructure funding programs at Infrastructure Canada, working in close partnership with provinces, territories and municipalities.  From 1999 to 2006, Megan held a number of positions in the Canadian Heritage portfolio, where she developed international cultural policy initiatives for UNESCO, delivered programming for the Canada Council of the Arts, and supported the department’s portfolio management and corporate secretariat functions.

Megan holds a Master’s degree in History from Queen’s University. She lives in Chelsea, Quebec with her family and is an avid hiker and cross-country skier.


Jason Rakochy, Senior Vice President, Strategy and Growth, Hydro One

Jason Rakochy is head of the Strategy and Growth department in support of Hydro One’s growth and modernization initiatives. In this position, he leads integrated strategic planning, plus business development and commercial efforts within the North American electric utility industry, including accountability for unregulated revenue and M&A opportunities.

Prior to joining Hydro One, Jason spent 22 years with Suncor, in successive roles including Vice President Strategy & Development and Vice President Upstream Projects, where he was accountable for overall project delivery and commercial management of Suncor’s upstream capital portfolio. In earlier roles, he held a broad and progressive range of technical and operational leadership roles in the Upstream and Downstream business units. 

Jason holds Bachelor’s degrees in commerce and chemical engineering from the University of Saskatchewan, and has completed the General Management Program at Harvard Business School.

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