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Employment Opportunity: Program Officer

The C.D. Howe Institute is Canada's leading economic think tank. It is an independent not-for-profit organization whose overarching mission is to raise Canadians’ living standards by fostering economically sound public policies. Non-partisan in nature and national in scope, the Institute commissions authoritative peer-reviewed papers by recognized experts on emerging issues and organizes and convenes policy events that bring together private and public sector leaders. The C.D. Howe Institute’s events program is positioned to host both in-person and virtual events in 2022, including webinars, roundtable lunches, conferences and signature dinners.

Summary of position:

Reporting to the department Director, the role of the Program Officer is to develop and promote the C.D. Howe Institute brand to current and potential sponsors and event speakers. The Program Officer will lead all aspects of the recruitment and stewardship of sponsors and speakers, and other duties as assigned.

Discovering Policy Issues & Identifying Event Topics

  • Maintaining a constant eye on numerous news outlets
  • Researching C.D. Howe Institute members and identifying their policy interests
  • Identifying thought leaders to speak on policy issues

Recruiting Speakers & Sponsors

  • Developing speaker proposals for prospective and current speakers
  • Assess events portfolio and match sponsor interests to upcoming events
  • Build sponsorship proposals based on event type and relationship to sponsor to solicit event funding
  • Develop and maintain existing and new relationships with speakers and sponsors
  • Prospect potential donors and handle negotiations with sponsors

Strategic Initiatives, Communications & Marketing

  • Coordinate with the Communications department to promote events on Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media outlets
  • Draft copy for event promotional materials
  • Execute event outreach by drafting invitations and creating lists of relevant stakeholders 
  • Other duties as assigned

Administrative Tasks

  • Updating all appropriate documents throughout all stages of event development (including Salesforce)
  • Create appropriate correspondence such as proposals, thank you letters, and program outcome information

Key requirements:

  • A minimum of 3 years’ experience in program development or sales.
  • Have confidence and experience selling and recruiting speakers and sponsors over the telephone or in person
  • Have an engaging personality and the ability to build dialogue and rapport with potential speakers and sponsors
  • Good understanding of Canadian public policy, and strong research skills/ability to identify potential speakers/sponsors based off of industry needs is critical
  • Team player who is organized, diligent, proactive, and capable of working in a fast-paced environment


  • An interest in public policy
  • Experience with Salesforce and Microsoft Publisher

What we can offer you:

  • Opportunities to do challenging work and progressively take on greater responsibilities for career growth
  • Competitive compensation package
  • Defined Benefit Pension Plan
  • Health and dental benefits
  • Hybrid Work Environment
  • Professional development opportunities
  • Annual wellness account that promotes an active lifestyle
  • Life insurance
  • Prime downtown location (Toronto) close to transit, with opportunities to work from home

To apply, please submit a resume and cover letter to personnel@cdhowe.org.

The position is based in Toronto and involves occasional travel to Montreal, Ottawa and Calgary. Salary will be commensurate with experience.

We thank all candidates for their interest, however only successful applicants will be contacted for an interview.