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February 19, 2004


New head for
Canada Foundation for Innovation

Dr. Eliot A. Phillipson is the fourth president and CEO of the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI). He succeeds the CFI's current president, Dr. David Strangway, who announced last August that he would be stepping down on March 31, 2004.

The announcement was made Feb. 16 by Dr. John Evans, chair of the board of directors of CFI. “Dr. Phillipson is eminently qualified to lead the CFI,” said Dr. Evans. “His vast experience as a world-class researcher, his integrity, and his expertise as a highly respected administrator make him the ideal choice.”

The board made the appointment following an extensive search and was assisted by an independent consulting firm. Dr. Phillipson, who currently serves as chair of the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto, will begin his new responsibilities at the CFI as of July 1, 2004. The CFI’s senior vice-president, Carmen Charette, will serve as acting president during the interim period.

As president and CEO, Dr. Phillipson will be responsible for managing a $3.65 billion budget and will work to strengthen the capacity of Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals, and other non-profit research organizations to carry out world-class research and technology development.

“Dr. Phillipson is an outstanding researcher and leader who is committed to shaping the future of science in Canada,” said Dr. Alan Bernstein, president of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and a CFI Board Director. “His appointment ensures that the CFI will continue to support research in areas of strategic importance to Canada.”

The CFI’s chair also thanked Dr. Strangway for his six years of service as president and CEO. “David is widely recognized for his leadership, his commitment to excellence, and his contributions to Canadian innovation,” said Dr. Evans. “All of us who had the good fortune to work with him are thankful for his role in helping transform the research landscape in this country.”

The CFI is an independent corporation created in 1997 by the Government of Canada to fund research infrastructure. The CFI’s mandate is to strengthen the ability of Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals, and other non-profit institutions to carry out world-class research and technology development that will benefit Canadians.

For more on CFI and Dr. Phillipson, see


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