CICan welcomes new board members and marks major milestone in diversity challenge

Ottawa, July 9, 2021 – Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) is pleased to welcome two new Board members who will bring fresh perspectives to the association. They also contribute to the overall diversity of the Board, allowing CICan to surpass its 50-30 objectives.

Representation and diversity are clear priorities for CICan, which signed on to the government of Canada’s 50-30 challenge last December, committing to achieving 50% gender parity on its board and senior management team; as well as at least 30% representation of other under-represented groups, including Indigenous people, racialized persons, people living with disabilities, and members of the LGBTQ2+ community.

The new Board members, who were both nominated during CICan’s recent annual general meeting are Dr. Bryn Kulmatycki and Professor Asha Singh Kanwar.

Professor Asha Singh Kanwar is one of the world’s leading advocates of learning for sustainable development, and currently serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Commonwealth of Learning. She has also won several prestigious international awards over her career, including the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE) Prize of Excellence, and the Meritorious Service Award for outstanding contributions in open and distance education from the Asian Association of Open Universities. She has been conferred eight honorary doctorates from Universities in Asia, Africa, Europe and North America.

Dr. M. Bryn Kulmatycki has been President and CEO of Northern Lights College since 2015 where he oversaw the expansion of a new trades training facility and created the Centre of Innovation for Indigenous Education. He has extensive experience in public and private education, both in the K-12 system and at the post-secondary level.  He has also held positions as President of a private university in Alberta and as a college Academic Vice-President in British Columbia.


“We are absolutely thrilled to welcome Asha and Bryn to our Board of Directors. They are both exceptional leaders who bring years of experience in the post-secondary sector and will help our Board tremendously as we tackle the particular challenges caused by COVID-19.”

Paula Burns, President and CEO of Lethbridge College and Board Chair of CICan

“By bringing diverse perspectives to our leadership team, we are taking a very concrete step towards gender equity and greater inclusion at the highest level within our association. Given the diverse population we serve, along with our members across the country and our partners around the world, we are strongly committed to the principles of equity, diversity and inclusion, and sincerely believe this can only make us stronger as an association.”

Denise Amyot, President and CEO, Colleges and Institutes Canada


About Colleges and Institutes Canada:

Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) is the voice of Canada’s publicly-supported colleges, institutes, cegeps and polytechnics, and an international leader in education for employment with ongoing programs in over 25 countries. CICan’s members add over $190B to Canada’s economy each year and contribute to inclusive economic growth by working with industry and community partners to offer more than 10,000 programs to learners in urban, rural, remote, and northern communities.


For more information:

Julien Abord-Babin
Senior Strategic Communications Officer
Colleges and Institutes Canada
Phone: 613-746-2222 ext. 3131
Twitter: @CollegeCan