Visionary leader Mitzie Hunter takes the helm of Canada’s award-winning public foundation for gender equality and justice

Mitzie Hunter, President and CEO, Canadian Women's FoundationToronto, ON – June 27, 2024 – The Canadian Women’s Foundation is pleased to announce Mitzie Hunter as new President and Chief Executive Officer. Mitzie is a dynamic, community-grounded leader who will play a pivotal role in advancing gender equality in Canada.

Mitzie’s 30 years of leadership span the nonprofit sector, private sector, and government. She has a trailblazing track record and many successes championing infrastructure and community improvements. She was the first Black woman to serve as Ontario’s Minister of Education. She also served as Ontario’s Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development and as Associate Minister of Finance.

Mitzie is a respected advocate for diverse women, girls, and Two Spirit, trans, and nonbinary people throughout Canada. She is known for her expertise in an array of issues, from women’s leadership to inclusive economies to sustainable neighbourhood and city building. She is a founding visionary of the Prosperity Project.

She served as Chief Administrative Officer of Toronto Community Housing Corporation and head of CivicAction. She is a Senior Fellow with the C.D. Howe Institute and a Canadian Urban Leader at the University of Toronto’s School of Cities. Mitzie has also served in several board leadership positions in nonprofit and public service bodies, including United Way Greater Toronto and TVO. In 2023, Mitzie ran for mayor in the City of Toronto by-election.

“We’re thrilled that Mitzie brings her many skills, passions, and lived experiences to lead the Canadian Women’s Foundation at this urgent moment,” says Laurie Young, Chair of the Board of Directors. “From fueling grassroots programs for women, girls, and gender-diverse people to building feminist philanthropy to breaking systemic gender barriers, now is the time to rally together for transformative change.”

Many gains for gender equality have been achieved in Canada over the past three decades, but they are uneven and at risk. Gender pay gaps persist – wider for Black and Indigenous women, women with disabilities, and newcomer women. Forty-four per cent of women in Canada experience intimate partner violence in their lifetimes, and every 48 hours, a woman or girl is killed by violence. Single mothers are at high risk of poverty, and women and feminist entrepreneurs face stubborn barriers to financing. Gendered risks of climate change, including elevated rates of gender-based violence and job loss, are under-addressed in regional and federal emergency and disaster plans.

“Our goal must be nothing less than a gender-equal Canada,” says Mitzie. “I am excited to play my part as President and CEO to help get us there, working alongside our brilliant grantee partners, and dedicated donors and supporters.”

Last year, donors and partners of the Foundation supported over 600 programs to end gender-based violence, build economic stability and opportunities, and empower participants with confidence and leadership skills. They impacted more than three million lives across every region of the country. So far, tens of thousands of people across Canada have joined the Canadian Women’s Foundation’s generous and active community, counting themselves in for gender equality.

“The Canadian Women’s Foundation is Canada’s hub for action on gender equality,” says Mitzie. “It is for every single one of us who believes in the change we’ve already seen and knows reaching the goal of a gender-equal Canada is both possible and necessary. I invite everybody to join me in this changemaking community so every woman, girl, and gender-diverse person gets the power, safety, support, and rights to thrive, today and tomorrow.”

About the Canadian Women’s Foundation

The Canadian Women’s Foundation is Canada’s public foundation for gender justice and equality. We advance this by growing support for grassroots feminist action, partnering with communities and organizations to improve conditions, and building diverse leadership and knowledge for sustainable change. Since 1991, our generous donors and supporters have contributed more than $250 million to fund over 3,200 life-transforming programs throughout Canada. The Canadian Women’s Foundation is a winner of the Governor General’s 2023 Innovation Award.

For information and interviews, contact:

Kayla Mouzos (she/her), Brown & Cohen Communications & Public Affairs Inc., Phone 416-484-1132 ext. 6 | Mobile 437-855-2228 | Email

Editor’s Note: When referring to the Canadian Women’s Foundation, please use the full name. Please do not abbreviate or use acronyms.