Working with you for a more open movement

July 4, 2016

At the Winnipeg 2016 Liberal Biennial Convention, delegates elected new members of our National Board.

As the Liberal Party of Canada continues its work to become the most open and innovative movement in Canadian politics, one of their first orders of business is consulting with registered Liberals about the bylaws being developed in alignment with the party’s new constitution.

Those consultations will occur this summer before bylaws are drafted in September, and will cover topics ranging from how EDAs and Provincial Territorial Boards are governed, Commissions, and how to make policy development more open and interactive.

These are the Liberals who will be working with you to make our party more open and engaging than ever before, so please take a moment to get to know many of the table officers and other leadership on your National Board:

Anna Gainey

Anna Gainey is beginning her second term as President of the Liberal Party of Canada, having first been elected in February 2014. Working closely with Justin Trudeau, Anna’s leadership has been instrumental in the party’s modernization and its historic success in the 2015 election campaign. Anna has been a very active Liberal ever since joining the party back in 1999 as a McGill Young Liberal. After completing graduate studies at the London School of Economics, Anna returned to the party to work as a special assistant to Minister John McCallum and NATO policy advisor to Minister Bill Graham. Throughout this period, Anna has had a key role on numerous successful campaigns, including Marc Garneau’s elections in 2008 and 2011, and as a senior advisor to Justin Trudeau’s Leadership campaign. Her years of experience working for the party as both a staffer and a volunteer have given her an in-depth understanding of the party’s strengths and potential.

Anna is also the executive director of the Gainey Foundation, which provides funding for environmental and arts education programs for youth. She created the foundation in 2007 following the tragic death of her sister Laura. Under her leadership, the foundation raised nearly $2 million in two years through cross-Canada events and grassroots fundraising campaigns. Anna and her husband Tom Pitfield are proud parents to three young children.

Suzanne Cowan

Originally from Halifax, NS and based in Toronto, ON, Suzanne Cowan is currently serving as the National Vice-President (English) of the Liberal Party of Canada. Suzanne comes from a political family and has been involved in politics all her life. She has worked at the federal and provincial levels as a political staffer. Most recently, she served as Director of Advertising and Senior Advisor to Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau from the 2013 through the 2015 election. Suzanne also served as Director of Communications for Justin Trudeau’s successful leadership campaign. Suzanne has previously served in senior positions for the Premier of Ontario, Deputy Prime Minister of Canada, Minister of State for Public Health and in the Senate of Canada.

Beyond politics Suzanne is an experienced communications and marketing professional, Suzanne is currently the Vice President of Business Development and Corporate Affairs for Park Lawn Corporation.

A Proud Canadian and Maritimer, Suzanne has earned degrees from Mount Allison University and University Marc Bloch in Strasbourg, France. She is the mother of 2 very busy little girls.

Sébastien Fassier

A political science graduate with a background in journalism, Sébastien Fassier serves as Vice President (French) of the Liberal Party of Canada. Sébastien is an experienced manager working in Montreal for NATIONAL Public Relations. A digital communication specialist with almost 20 years of public relations experience, he draws on his extensive understanding of technology, web communication and social media to advise institutions, government organizations and companies regarding their strategic objectives.

Sébastien has often brought his professional experience to the world of politics. Starting in 2013, Sébastien developed the Liberal Party’s digital strategy for Quebec (web and social media) and deployed a network of experts to support Liberal candidates with improved use of technology. He then joined the Ottawa campaign headquarters during the election as Lead digital strategist (French), playing an important role in LPC’s online presence, especially during the Leaders’ debates.

Father of two young girls, Mathilde, 5 and Jeanne, 8, Sebastien strongly believes that his political involvement is a way to ensure they grow up in a strong, diversified and prosperous country where they can achieve their full potential.

David Hurford

David Hurford serves as National Policy Secretary for the Liberal Party of Canada. He has been a member of the Liberal Party of Canada for 23 years, and worked on numerous federal Liberal campaigns across Western Canada between 1993 and 2015. For the past 10 years, he has lived in Vancouver where he is Executive Director of a British Columbia health care association and previously served as Policy Chair for the Liberal Party of Canada in British Columbia

David has over 20 years of experience working in senior roles with federal, provincial and municipal governments, crown corporations, media, non-profit organizations and a top-ranked global university. He has served as an advisor to previous federal Ministers of Industry, Health, Infrastructure, Transport, Revenue, Fisheries and Oceans.

Leanne Bourassa

Over the past 15 years, Leanne Bourassa has been an active member of the Liberal Party of Canada at every level. At the 2014 biennial convention, Leanne was elected National Membership Secretary and was reelected at the 2016 convention in Winnipeg. A lawyer by trade, Leanne was previously the president of the legal commission for Liberal Party of Canada (Quebec), and served as a member of the National Leadership Rules Committee. She continues to be involved with the NDG Westmount riding as association president.

Professionally, Leanne has spent over a decade working in the legal department at National Bank Financial and the Compliance department of National Bank of Canada, where she became a Senior Adviser in 2015.

Born in Calgary and now based in Montreal, Leanne is a proud Canadian, fully bilingual, and an advocate of progressive politics. She studied common and civil law at McGill University and received her honours bachelor’s degree at St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia.

Christina Topp

Christina Topp is the Interim National Director of the Liberal Party of Canada, after having first served as Senior Director of Fundraising since 2013. Christina was responsible for ensuring the necessary funds were raised for a fast-growing Liberal movement and the party’s successful 2015 election campaign – the longest Canadian election campaign in close to a century. In addition to providing leadership to the fundraising team and program, Topp was also responsible for leading professional teams accountable for donor and member services and for the campaign’s digital, communications and analytics functions.

Since earning her bachelor’s degree at the University of Guelph and her MBA at York University’s Schulich School of Business, Topp has had a number of senior positions in marketing, communications and fundraising. Following her time at York University, she worked for Foster Parents Plan (now Plan Canada) and the Mount Sinai Hospital Foundation in Toronto. Between 2008 and 2013, she was Vice President of Marketing and Communications for the World Wildlife Fund. Christina and her husband Ed are proud parents to two daughters.

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