Director, VIA Rail Canada Inc.

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Position title:
Per diem:
$410.00 - $485.00
Annual retainer:
$5,300.00 - $6,200.00
Across Canada
Application Review Date:
September 6, 2023
Opportunity number:

VIA Rail Canada Inc. (VIA Rail) is a Crown corporation that operates the national passenger rail services on behalf of the Government of Canada, offering intercity rail services and ensuring rail transportation services to regional and remote communities. Its objective is to offer a safe, accessible, efficient, reliable, sustainable and environmentally friendly passenger rail service that meets the needs of Canadian passengers.

The Board of Directors of VIA Rail is responsible for the governance and oversight of corporate activities, business performance and strategic policy direction. It ensures internal controls are in place to manage risks and ensure the accuracy of the organization’s finances and reports.

Diversity and Official Languages

We are committed to providing a healthy and accessible workplace that supports one’s dignity, self-esteem and the ability to achieve one’s full potential. With this in mind, all appointees will be expected to take steps to promote and maintain a healthy, respectful, inclusive and harassment-free work environment.

Preference may be given to applicants who are members of one or more of the following groups: women, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, and members of a visible minority group.

The Government of Canada will consider proficiency in both official languages and diversity in assessing applicants. You are therefore encouraged to include in your online profile your ability to speak and understand your second official language.

To be considered, please ensure that the information provided in your curriculum vitae and cover letter clearly demonstrate how you meet the following requirements:

Education and Experience

  • A degree from a recognized university in a relevant field of study, or an acceptable combination of equivalent education, job-related training or experience;

  • Experience serving as a member of a board of directors for a complex commercial public or private sector organization or as a senior executive of a complex commercial public or private sector organization answerable to stakeholders in said sectors;

  • Experience in dealing with senior representatives of government or the private sector;

  • Demonstrated experience as a senior executive or in a high-level management role;

  • Experience in the transportation sector or business community;

  • Experience in one or more of the following areas: safety and security management; accounting, finance, business administration, commerce or economics, engineering or railway engineering, project management, information technology, cybersecurity, tourism and hospitality, stakeholder relations, business transformation and environmental sustainability development; and

  • A professional accounting designation (CPA) would be considered an asset.

If you move on to the next stage of the selection process, the following criteria will be assessed:

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Knowledge of VIA Rail's mandate, mission, strategic priorities, and business activities and the transportation industry, preferably related to the rail sector;

  • Knowledge of the role and responsibilities of a board member, including fundamental accountabilities to the Government of Canada as shareholder;

  • Knowledge of the public policy environment and political climate facing a Crown corporation and a general understanding of the legislative environment in which it operates, including the;Financial Administration Act;

  • Knowledge of human resources and financial management, strategic corporate planning, monitoring, and evaluation of corporate performance;

  • Knowledge of corporate governance including good governance principles and best practices;

  • Knowledge of one or more of the following areas: accounting, finance, business administration, commerce or economics, value creation and income, engineering or railway engineering, law, marketing, human resources and labor relations, tourism and hospitality, real estate management, risk management, project management, cybersecurity, management and administration of major pension plans;

  • Knowledge of the communities served by VIA Rail across the country;

  • Financial literacy;

  • Superior communication skills, both oral and written, and the ability to manage communications with a variety of stakeholders;

  • Ability to identify, analyze and define priorities and strategies;

  • Ability to anticipate emerging issues;

  • Ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships with other board members and the board's partners and stakeholders; and

  • Ability to participate in consensus building.

Language Requirements

Proficiency in both official languages would be preferred.

If you move on to the next stage of the selection process, we will contact your references to confirm that you meet the above selection criteria and that you possess the following Personal Attributes:

  • Sound judgment

  • High ethical standards and integrity

  • Superior interpersonal skills

  • Tact and diplomacy

  • Strategic thinking

Eligibility Factors and Conditions of Employment

  • Appointees must comply with the Ethical and Political Activity Guidelines for Public Office Holders throughout their appointment as a term and condition of employment. The guidelines are available on the Governor in Council Appointments website, under Forms and reference material.

  • All appointees will be subject to the Conflict of Interest Act. Public office holders appointed on a full-time basis must also submit to the Office of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner, within 60 days of appointment, a confidential report in which they disclose all of their assets, liabilities and outside activities. For more information, please visit the Office of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner's website.

  • Appointees must uphold the highest standards of probity and are expected to demonstrate behaviors in the workplace that afford respect, equality and dignity, to everyone they interact with at work at all times. The Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector outlines the values and expected behaviors for public servants, including valuing diversity and creating workplaces free from harassment and discrimination. Governor in Council appointees are expected to uphold and respect these values and principles in a positive and active manner.

  • No officer or employee of Via Rail Inc. or any of its affiliates shall be a director of Via Rail Inc.

  • Appointees must be available for six scheduled in-person board meetings annually, plus additional meetings as required.

  • Appointees must be willing to act as Chairperson or as a member of a committee of the Board.

  • Appointees must be a resident Canadian, as defined in subsection 2(1) of the Canada Business Corporations Act

A link to this notice will be placed in the Canada Gazette to assist the Governor in Council in identifying qualified candidates. It is not, however, intended to be the sole means of recruitment.

A list of qualified candidates may be established and may be used for similar opportunities.

How to Apply

Review of applications (more information here) will begin on September 6, 2023. Candidates should apply online via the Governor in Council Appointments website. Candidates are strongly encouraged to submit their applications by this date. After this date, your application will be retained and may be considered up until an appointment to the position is made. Your cover letter should be addressed to the Director of Selection Processes, Senior Personnel Secretariat, Privy Council Office, and should be sent only through the online application.

Instructions on how to apply for an appointment opportunity can be found on the Governor in Council Appointments website.

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