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New president to lead Genome Canada


Genome Canada, a not-for-profit organization that invests in genomic science and technology, has appointed Dr. Rob Annan as the organization’s new president. He will start his new position on Jan. 1, 2020.

“Dr. Annan’s leadership comes at an important time in the evolution of advanced biosciences. The pace of change is so astonishing – in gene-editing, synthetic biology, big data and artificial intelligence – that as an organization, we really have a responsibility to evolve. I am confident that Dr. Annan’s ability to transform his passion for research into purpose will be at the core of how we shape the next chapter of this cutting-edge science,” said Dr. Elizabeth Douville, chair of the organization’s board.

She added that Dr. Annan’s appointment follows a robust national and international executive search led by a special sub-committee of the board.

Dr. Annan brings to his new position strong academic qualifications, extensive leadership experience and a track record of success in Canadian science and innovation policy. Having joined Genome Canada in 2017 as vice president of public affairs and communications, he has made contributions focused on promoting the value of genomics to major stakeholders. Prior to this role, Dr. Annan spent seven years at Mitacs as chief research officer, where he helped build a Canadian success story in the development and delivery of policy-driven innovation programs.

“Working with an incredible network of Genome Centres and other partners, I am honoured to lead Genome Canada into its next chapter, supporting the next generation of researchers and companies ready to tackle today’s biggest questions,” said Annan.

Genome Canada thanked Marc LePage for his service as the organization’s president since 2016 and the very best in his retirement. LePage was one of the pioneers behind the founding of Genome Canada in 2000, having served as President and CEO of both Genome Canada and Génome Québec.

Recently, in the summer of 2019 Genome Canada invested $24.2-million into three University of Saskatchewan-led research projects that focused on wheat, lentils, and livestock.