Advising on Strategy and Fostering Growth — Karen Ellis Appointed to ADGA’s Strategic Advisory Council

OTTAWA, October 10, 2018 – ADGA is pleased to announce the addition of Karen Ellis to its Strategic Advisory Council. Ms. Ellis has more than 20 years of executive leadership and management experience in the federal public service, most recently as Associate Deputy Minister with Veterans Affairs Canada. Prior to this, she served in the DM ranks in two other roles as President, Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario; and Associate Deputy Minister of Natural Resources Canada. Previously, Ms. Ellis held the position of Assistant Commissioner, Ontario Region for the Canada Revenue Agency.

In addition, Ms. Ellis served as Assistant Deputy Minister, Infrastructure and Environment at National Defence from 2002 to 2006, and was on the Board of Defence Construction Canada during this same period.

ADGA is a leading national defence, security and IM/IT company — celebrating more than 50 years as a client-focused, enterprising business that is proudly Canadian.

The ADGA Strategic Advisory Council (SAC) was established in 2017 and provides strategic advice and guidance to the company’s leadership team. Chaired by Gen (Ret’d) Raymond R. Henault, CMM, MSC, CD, it is instrumental to ADGA’s continued expansion and to achieving our mission to be the leading Canadian provider of technology solutions in Defence, Security and Enterprise Computing. Ms. Ellis will be joining the ranks of fellow SAC members Richard Fadden, OC; Mrs. Carolyn Hurst; LGen Ret’d) Guy Thibault, CMM, MSC, CD; Dr. Micheál Kelly; and BGen Ret’d) Richard Giguère, OMM, MSM, CD.

“Karen Ellis brings impressive and valued experience in strategic and business planning, operational oversight, financial and performance management, and talent development,” said Gen (Ret’d) Raymond R. Henault, CMM, MSC, CD and SAC Chair. “These are the key ingredients to ADGA flexing its strength as the provider-of-choice for the defence, security and enterprise computing sectors.”

“The opportunity to once again work with Gen (Ret’d) Ray Henault was one of the many deciding factors for me to offer my candidacy for this prestigious Council,” stated Karen Ellis. “I am both pleased and honoured to contribute my leadership expertise to help ADGA’s continued drive to advance its significant success in defence, security and IT — my work with Canada’s military at National Defence and my time with Veterans Affairs Canada, serving those who served, were career highlights and some of my proudest moments in our country’s public service.”

During Ms. Ellis’ tenure with the Government of Canada she provided advice to a wide range of senior leaders and ministers related to policy, operational and service delivery initiatives, and gained diverse leadership experience with small, medium and large branches and departments ranging from hundreds to thousands of employees — responsible for the stewardship of budgets ranging from $800,000 to $1 billion, and was 2-i-c stewarding budgets of $3 billion and more. Earlier in her career as a new executive, Ms. Ellis was a policy advisor at the Privy Council Office advising on natural resources policy issues. Additional core agency experience includes Ms. Ellis’ role as Senior Vice-President, Canada Public Service Agency where Karen advanced the renewal of workforce and workplace policies.

“Our Strategic Advisory Council provides immeasurable strategic insights and plays an invaluable role in shaping ADGA’s future growth,” stated Françoise Gagnon, CEO, ADGA. “The addition of an accomplished woman at the table is also exciting as we work towards our goal of championing gender equity at ADGA. Ms. Ellis’ appointment is confirmation that success attracts talented leaders. ADGA will be well served by the substantive experience and expertise that she brings into the fold.”



Distinguished Career Highlights —

  • Veterans Affairs CanadaAssociate Deputy Minister (Aug. 2015 – Dec. 2017)
  • Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, President (Aug. 2013 – Aug. 2015)
  • Natural Resources Canada, Associate Deputy Minister (Feb. 2011 – Aug.2013)
  • Canada Revenue Agency, Assistant Commissioner, Ontario Region (Sept. 2008 – Feb. 2011)
  • Canada Public Service Agency, Senior Vice-President, Workforce and Workplace Renewal    (Sept. 2006 – Sept.2008)
  • Department of National Defence, Assistant Deputy Minister, Infrastructure and Environment   (Dec. 2002 to Sept. 2006)

Board and Strategic Advisory Council Appointments —

  • ADGA Strategic Advisory Council (2018); Canadian Race Relations Foundation (ex-officio 2000-2002); Defence Construction Canada (2002- 2006); Public Service Pension Advisory Board (2005 to 2017).

Notable Achievements —

  • As an Associate Deputy Minister, served on Deputy Minister committees including the Public Service Management Advisory Committee; the Economic Trends and Policy Committee; and the Advisory Committee for the Canada School of Public Service
  • As the Deputy Minister Champion for (non-executive) Managers across the Public Service (May 2014 to December 2017), Ms. Ellis successfully guided this community through a challenging transition
  • Recipient of the distinguished Joan Atkinson Award of Excellence for outstanding contribution as a leader in Canada’s Public Service (2011) 

Education —

  • Bachelor of Education, University of Ottawa (1984); Master of Arts, History, Carleton University (1983); Honours Bachelor of Arts, Carleton University (1981).    



Founded in 1967, ADGA is a privately owned and family-operated Canadian company that employs more than 600 staff with offices in Ottawa, Gatineau, Trois-Rivières, Kingston, Toronto, and Calgary. Celebrating over 50 years, ADGA is proud to deliver excellent client service in the defence, security and enterprise computing sectors.

In Spring 2018, ADGA acquired Presidia Security Consulting as ADGA continues to build its unique Converged Security Solutions service offerings.  


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