Michele McKenzie


Director, Nova Scotia

Michele McKenzie is Principal of McKenzie Strategies, a management consulting firm focused on business development and strategy, based in Waverley, Nova Scotia.  She has worked for a range of clients including Chemonics International, Tourism Nova Scotia, Cabot Links and the Halifax Partnership, and is currently undertaking a one year Fellowship at Harvard University’s Advanced Leadership Initiative.

Through 2016, she was a senior consultant with the USAID funded ‘Building Economic Sustainability Through Tourism’ Project based in Amman, Jordan, where she developed new marketing and corporate strategies for the Jordan Tourism Board, and consulted on the launch of The Jordan Trail.   She was the President and CEO of the Canadian Tourism Commission (now Destination Canada) from 2004 – 2013.

Michele has a solid reputation for marketing results, strategic thinking, building leadership capacity and executing transformational change. She is a recognized expert in marketing communications and tourism. In 2013, Michele was recognized as one of ‘Canada’s Most Powerful Women – Top 100’ by WXN. In 2014, she was named by Hotelier Magazine as one of the ’10 Most Influential Leaders In Canada’s Hospitality Industry in the Past 25 Years’.  In November 2016, the Canadian Board Diversity Council announced Michele as a Diversity 50 2016 Board Candidate.

While at CTC, Michele led Canada’s international tourism marketing program and brand development. During her tenure, the Canada brand was recognized by ‘Futurebrand’s’ Country Brand Index as one of the top two country brands in the world (rising from #12 rank). She led an ambitious marketing program to promote tourism by leveraging the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games – a model that has since been followed by other nations. Michele also led the CTC in winning numerous awards and recognition including: Canadian Marketer of the Year Award in 2009, the Leading Management Change Award in 2013 for exceptional leadership in management practices in strategic planning, and in 2013 was inducted into Palladium’s Balanced Scorecard Hall of Fame for Strategy Execution. Michele held previous positions as Deputy Minister, Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage; and Director of Marketing, Nova Scotia Economic Renewal Agency.

Michele holds the ICD.d designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors, and is a Director of the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation, the Property Valuation Services Corporation, the Halifax Citadel Regimental Association, and the Christian Children’s Fund of Canada.  She is a graduate of Dalhousie University in Halifax, and holds an Honorary Degree from Humber College in Toronto.