Chief Executive Officer
Sarah Watts-Rynard

sarah@polytechnicscanada.ca

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Sarah Watts-Rynard assumed the role of Chief Executive Officer at Polytechnics Canada in July 2018.  Prior to this role, she served as Executive Director of the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum, supporting Canada’s apprenticeship community with research, promotion and by connecting stakeholders across trades, across sectors and across Canada.

Sarah has a degree in Journalism and English from Carleton University.  Since graduating, she has built a career that includes time in government, the private sector and at skills-focused non-profit organizations.  She has experience related to non-profit governance, fundraising, advocacy and marketing.  She leads a team of passionate and dedicated employees committed to high-quality skills and innovation policy, reflecting the strengths of polytechnic education in Canada.  In 2018, Sarah was awarded an honorary diploma in the Skilled Trades by Niagara College.

Sarah is Vice-Chair of the Canadian Centre for Women in Science, Engineering, Trades and Technology (WinSETT Centre) and serves as a Director on the Boards of the Canadian Club of Ottawa and the CWB Welding Foundation.

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Policy Analyst
Alexandra Apavaloae

alexandra@polytechnicscanada.ca

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Alexandra joined Polytechnics Canada as a Policy Analyst in April 2021. Her work focuses on policy research and writing related to supporting learning for a changing labour market and enabling innovation activity through applied research. She has a Doctorate in Sociology from the University of Cordoba in Argentina, as well as a Bachelor of Political Science from the University of Ottawa. Before joining Polytechnics, Alexandra worked as an analyst conducting public opinion research at Nanos Research.

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Director of Policy
Matthew Henderson

matthew@polytechnicscanada.ca

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Matt joined Polytechnics Canada in February 2017. He leads the policy team in the research, writing, advocacy and government relations that supports member institutions. Matt’s research and writing focuses on post-secondary education, workforce development, and innovation. He currently manages a number of member working groups, including the Vice Presidents, Academic from each institution.

Matt holds a Master’s degree in International Public Policy from the Balsillie School of International Affairs and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Wilfrid Laurier University.

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Communications officer
Alexandra Hornby

alex@polytechnicscanada.ca

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Alex joined Polytechnics Canada as a Communications Officer in January 2021. She is responsible for planning and executing communications projects that support Polytechnic Canada’s advocacy initiatives. Alex holds a Master of Arts in Brand Management from Coventry University and a Bachelor of Communication and Media Studies from Carleton University.

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Policy Analyst
Cody McKay

cody@polytechnicscanada.ca

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Cody joined Polytechnics Canada in March 2015, and currently is the policy analyst responsible for advocacy related to applied research and innovation. With a focus on innovation policy, Cody considers how polytechnic applied research can be better leveraged by federal programs to help Canadian businesses overcome barriers to growth, and the Canadian government tackle pressing challenges like climate change.  Additionally, he manages Polytechnics Canada’s Applied Research Working Group, comprised of the leaders of applied research at Polytechnics Canada’s 13 member institutions. Cody holds a Postgraduate Certificate in Project Management with a focus on international development from Humber, and a Bachelor Degree in International Relations from St. Thomas University in Fredericton. Prior to joining Polytechnics Canada, Cody worked with the Government of New Brunswick and the Canadian Red Cross.

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Executive Assistant
Karen Vaile

karen@polytechnicscanada.ca

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Karen joined Polytechnics Canada in September 2021. She supports our CEO, Sarah Watts-Rynard, and manages the Ottawa office. Karen has a background in supporting not-for-profit, membership-based organizations as well as in technical writing, instructional design, and instructor-led training. She holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Carleton University.

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Communications Officer
Monika Watten

monika@polytechnicscanada.ca

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Monika joined Polytechnics Canada as a Communications Officer in January 2021. She is focused on planning and executing communications strategies to elevate the profile of polytechnics in Canada on public-facing channels; supporting the policy team’s work in federal advocacy. Monika has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Ottawa. She previously worked in logistics and coordination in the construction industry and in digital communications focused on social media.

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