Senior Vice President, Destination Development

Destination Canada is a Crown corporation wholly owned by the Government of Canada and formed under the Canadian Tourism Commission Act. Its mission is to influence supply and build demand for the benefit of locals, communities and visitors through leading research, alignment with public and private sectors, and marketing Canada nationally and abroad.  The organization thrives on team calls across the country and around the world, connecting and collaborating across multiple industries and government levels to promote Canada as a premier four-season destination.

Tourism is the heartbeat of communities from coast to coast to coast. Destination Canada seeks diverse, ingenious thinkers teeming with intellectual curiosity and a deep desire to grow Canada’s tourism industry – strengthening the socio-cultural, environmental and economic vitality tourism brings to Canada.

Destination Canada is looking for a Senior Vice President, Destination Development to join its leadership team. The position is based in the Vancouver head office, but the incumbent can work from the Ottawa office or work remotely from a home office across the country.

In this newly created role reporting to the President and CEO, the Senior Vice President, Destination Development (SVP) leads the organization’s destination development and stewardship strategy, inspiring and enabling strategic investments across the country, in partnership with diverse stakeholders—governmental, private and civic organizations—from across Canada. Through a collaborative leadership model, the incumbent will establish Destination Canada as the national focal point for stewarding Canada’s transition to a thriving regenerative visitor economy that is recognized by Canadians as contributing to a high quality of life in Canada with net economic, socio-cultural and environmental benefits.

The SVP will co-create and steer well-governed processes designed to engage key influencers from the private sector (entrepreneurs, financiers, high-growth sectors beyond tourism), community organizations (tourism associations, not-for-profit organizations), Indigenous peoples, and governments (federal, provincial and local/regional with responsibilities for tourism-relevant policy, financial investing, and operations such as parks and heritage) to catalyze investments that intentionally converge on a strategic set of legendary tourism experiences, projects, and clusters across the country.

A knowledgeable expert in destination development and stewardship, the SVP will inspire creativity, diversity of thought and innovation in the long-term development of Canada’s visitor economy through the generation, integration and sharing of knowledge. 

The SVP will develop strong relationships across diverse stakeholder groups and support strategic and creative partnerships by building or enabling new networks of communication and forums for collaboration, in service of a highly inter-dependent visitor economy ecosystem.

Key Responsibilities

  • Strategy. Works with leadership team and partners to build and execute destination development strategies that will create legendary experiences for visitors, generate benefits for host communities, leverage the outcomes of Destination Canada’s demand generation work and position Canada’s tourism sector for sustained long-term profitability.
  • Destination investment. Catalyzes mutually reinforcing private and public sector long-term investments by identifying economic opportunities and sharing insights, combined with co-leading well-governed and inclusive processes of stakeholder engagement nationally and regionally within Canada that will enhance the supply of legendary tourism experiences and grow high impact clusters. 
  • Strategic partnerships. Develops creative and strategic partnerships, supporting productive relationships with diverse stakeholders and sharing of knowledge across the visitor economy by establishing and enabling communication networks and forums for collaboration.
  • Destination stewardship. Provides thought leadership, generates buy-in, and nurtures a culture of stewardship and regeneration amongst visitor economy stakeholders to generate net economic, socio-cultural, and environmental benefits within destination communities.
  • Capacity building. Develops resources, knowledge and capacity within Destination Canada to enable the organization to take a principal role in the long-term strategic development and stewardship of tourism in Canada.

Essential Qualifications

Destination Canada strives to be an agile organization that responds to a fast-paced industry. The incumbent will require the skills and personal attributes to support this goal.

Education

Graduation from a recognized university in economics, business or commerce, geography, sociology, planning & governance or other [community] economic development discipline, or an acceptable combination of education, training and experience. A master’s degree is preferred.

Experience

  • Extensive entrepreneurial and/or investment (e.g., venture capital) experience is an asset.
  • At least 10 years’ experience at an executive level or through equivalent senior level roles within government, the private sector and/or not-for-profit organizations.
  • Extensive experience leading others, directly or indirectly, within complex and challenging operating contexts.
  • Experience translating data, analysis and insight into knowledge products that influence decision-making.
  • Experience interfacing with senior executive-level decision makers across government, the private sector and not-for-profit organizations.
  • Media relations experience.

Knowledge

  • Deep understanding of the role of, and approaches to, leadership within complex ecosystems, including familiarity with the state of the art as it relates to holistic or regenerative approaches to coaching and development.
  • Knowledge of Canada’s tourism ecosystem and its governance---from Canada’s value proposition as a destination for leisure travel and business events to the role of different levels of government, the private sector, civil society and other stakeholders, with emphasis on destination development.
  • Knowledge of Asset-Based Community Development, destination planning as well as economic cluster and venture capital dynamics.
  • Knowledge of business and economic intelligence/analysis approaches, systems and sharing platforms.
  • Understanding of how to work with the three levels of government and indigenous leadership.
  • English is essential. Bilingualism (French/English) is an asset.

Abilities

  • Extraordinarily strong relationship building skills, including ability to influence others over whom the incumbent has no authority and to work across distributed networks.
  • Ability to identify patterns and find synergies within complex operating environments.
  • Ability to develop long-term business strategies.
  • Demonstrated ability to understand and influence government decision-making.
  • Strong oral and written communications skills.
  • Ability to translate information into business value and direct or inform analyses in ways that give meaningful and informative business information.
  • Business and financial acumen, executive-level credibility, board awareness and governance.

Personal Suitability

  • Effective interpersonal relationships; creativity; judgment; results-oriented; discretion; confidentiality; diplomacy; detail-oriented.

To Apply

To fill this position, Destination Canada has partnered with executive search firm Odgers Berndtson. If you are interested in this opportunity, please submit your CV and cover letter at http://www.odgersberndtson.com/en/careers/17027.

You must certify in your application that you are legally entitled to work in Canada or have the ability to obtain the necessary approvals to work in Canada. Destination Canada reserves the right to require that you provide proof of your legal entitlement to work in Canada at any time.

You must be able to provide proof of your education credentials if requested.  When applying, candidates must clearly demonstrate in writing that they meet the above-mentioned education and experience criteria.

Please note that Destination Canada will not be providing relocation assistance.

Closing Date and Time: May 16, 2021, at 11:59 PM (PDT)

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Destination Canada believes that Canada's diversity, its greatest asset, is also what touches travellers' hearts most deeply. To that end, Destination Canada is committed to inclusive leadership within its workforce, workplace, and interactions with partners and travellers alike.

Destination Canada is an equal opportunity employer committed to reflecting Canada's diversity through fair and accessible hiring and employment practices. Destination Canada encourages all qualified individuals to apply, including racialized and Indigenous persons, women, members of ethnocultural and linguistic minorities, persons with disabilities, and differently abled persons. Destination Canada also welcomes applications from people of all ages, sexual orientations and gender identities. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment.

In accordance with the Accessible Canada Act, 2019 and all applicable provincial accessibility standards, upon request, accommodation will be provided by both Odgers Berndtson and Destination Canada at any stage of the hiring process.

Destination Canada’s workplace is bilingual with communications, resources and services provided in both of Canada's official languages. Persons are entitled to participate in the appointment process in the official language of their choice. Candidates are asked to indicate their first official language and their preferred official language in their application. Interviews are primarily conducted in the language of work.

We would like to thank all applicants for their interest. We regret that we are only able to personally contact those individuals whose profiles best match the requirements for the role.