Australia-Canada Economic Leadership 2023 Directors and Officers

Hon. John R. Baird P.C.
Canadian Co-Chair, Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum

John Baird is a Senior Advisor at Bennett Jones LLP and a former Senior Cabinet Minister in the Government of Canada.

An instrumental figure in bilateral trade and investment relationships, Mr Baird has played a leading role in the Canada-China dialogue and worked to build ties with ASEAN countries. In addition, Mr Baird has worked closely with international leaders to strengthen security and economic ties with the United States and Middle Eastern countries.

A native of Ottawa, Mr Baird spent three terms as a Member of Parliament and four years as Foreign Minister. He also served as President of the Treasury Board, Minister of the Environment, Minister of Transport and Infrastructure, and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons. In 2010, he was selected by Members of Parliament from all parties as Parliamentarian of the Year. Prior to entering federal politics, Mr Baird spent ten years in the Ontario Legislature where he served as Minister of Community and Social Services, Minister of Energy, and Government House Leader.

In addition to his work with Bennett Jones, Mr Baird sits on the advisory board of Barrick Gold Corp., the corporate boards of Canadian Pacific, Canfor Corporation (as Chair), Osisko Gold Royalties, the FWD Group and PineBridge Investments. He also serves as a Senior Advisor at Eurasia Group, a global political risk consultancy.

Mr Baird also volunteers his time with Community Living Ontario, an organization that supports individuals with developmental disabilities, the Prince’s Trust Canada, the charitable office of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, and is a board member of the Friends of Israel Initiative. He holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Political Studies and an Honourary Doctorate of Law from Queen’s University at Kingston.

The Hon. Julie Bishop
Australian Co-Chair, Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum

The Hon. Julie Bishop, Principal, Julie Bishop & Partners; Chancellor of Australian National University; and former Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs (2007-2018).

The Hon Julie Bishop served as Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs from 2013 until 2018. She was the first female to hold the role as well as the first female Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party, serving for 11 years.

In a political career spanning over 20 years, Ms Bishop also served as Minister for Education, Science and Training, Minister for Women’s Issues and Minister for Ageing.

Before entering Parliament, Ms Bishop was a commercial litigation lawyer for national-based firm Clayton Utz, becoming a partner in 1985, and managing partner of the Perth office in 1994.

Ms Bishop is the Chancellor of Australian National University, Chair of Telethon Kids Institute, Chair of Prince’s Trust Australia, a member of the international advisory boards of Afiniti and the Human Vaccines Project and is the Patron of Shooting Stars – an education program for young aboriginal girls. She is also a member of the Global Board of Advisors of the Council on Foreign Relations.

In 2020, Ms Bishop was awarded a Fisher Family Fellowship at Harvard Kennedy School. In 2021, she was appointed by the UK Government to the G7 Gender Equality Advisory Council. In 2021, Ms Bishop was awarded the Kissinger Fellowship at the McCain Institute of International Leadership at Arizona State University.

Bob Onyschuk
President and Chief Executive Officer, Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum

Bob Onyschuk is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Onyschuk Strategic Advisors and the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum. He is a retired partner of Gowlings WLG specializing in real estate development, the Past Chair of the Canadian Urban Institute and the Past Canadian Chair of the Canadian Australian Chamber of Commerce. He also serves on a number of public and private sector boards and foundations in Canada.

Norman M. Steinberg
Vice-Chair, BFL Canada

Norman M. Steinberg is Vice-Chair of BFL Canada, where he also sits on the Board of Directors and chairs the Governance Committee.

From April 2017 to July 2019, Mr. Steinberg was Chair Emeritus of Norton Rose Fulbright Canada. Previously, Mr. Steinberg was Co-Chair and then Chair of Norton Rose Fulbright and its predecessor firm, Ogilvy Renault. He was also Global Chair of Norton Rose Fulbright, one of the largest law firms in the world with 4000 lawyers in 60 offices. At Norton Rose Fulbright and its predecessor firms, Mr. Steinberg focused on mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, privatization and corporate governance.

Mr. Steinberg is also Co-Chair of Dorel Industries where he chairs the Nominating and Governance Committee, Director of Fiera Capital where he chairs the Nominating and Governance Committee, Director of ATCO where he chairs the Audit and Risk Committee and is a member of the Corporate Governance – Nomination, Compensation and Succession Committee, Senior Advisor of Persistence Capital Partners (private equity), Co-Chair of Women in Governance, Vice-Chair (former Chair) of The McGill University Health Centre Foundation, Director and member of the Organizing Committee as well as former Canadian Co-Chair of the Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum, Strategic Advisor of Voyager Metals Inc., Senior Advisor of Teneo, and Vice Chair of the Board of Advisors of Alexa Translations.

He served as a director of numerous other boards, including Gildan Activewear, Canadian Marconi Company, Centraide of Montreal and the Foundation of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. He was former Vice-Chair of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, former President of the Canadian Club of Montreal and former Chairman of the Mount Royal Club of Montreal.

Mr. Steinberg holds a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Civil Law from McGill University in Montréal, Québec.

Mark Romoff
President, MRInsights Inc. and former President and Chief Executive Officer, Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships

Mark Romoff is a senior international business strategist with proven success in developing and leading economic, political and stakeholder relations, earning multiple recognitions for his contributions to Canada’s economic prosperity, enhanced productivity and global competitiveness. Currently President of MRInsights Inc., he provides advice to government and industry on infrastructure sector-related business development strategies and public policy issues. He is the former President and CEO of The Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships and before that Founding President and CEO of the Ontario Centres of Excellence. As a senior diplomat in Global Affairs Canada, he served in Nigeria, Mexico, Malaysia, Japan and the United States. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Infrastructure Ontario; First Nations Major Projects Coalition Advisory Centre; Buffalo Toronto Public Media Board of Trustees; Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum; i-CANADA Governors Council; Chair of the Central Canadian Public Television Association; former Vice[1]Chair of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Working Party on Public-Private Partnerships; Counsel at Gowling WLG; and a Senior Fellow at the C.D. Howe Institute. He also served as Chair of the Canadian Smart Cities Challenge Jury. He holds a Bachelor of Science from McGill University, a Masters in Applied Science from the University of Waterloo, and is a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government Senior Executives Program and the ICD Directors Education Program and holds the Certified Director designation. He is also a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.


Lori De Graw
Executive Director, Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum

Lori DeGraw is Executive Director of the Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum, an organization deepening bilateral connections in trade, investment, global security, foreign policy, innovation, and technology. Previously as VP Partnerships, she helped launch IAC, a federal project to support Canadian companies drive global scale. With a focus on content development, branding, and digital transformation she worked as VP Media Operations at Blue Ant Media for 10 years. She has led government relations for organizations in economic development, tourism, and conservation. And she has extensive Board experience, including currently as an elected Member and Vice-Chair of the Governance and Ethics Committee on the Canadian Olympic Committee Board, as a municipally appointed Chair of the Board of TOLive, one of Canada’s largest multi-theatre performing arts institutions, and previously as a federally appointed Member and Chair of HR & Governance at the Canada Media Fund. She is also a proud advocate for numerous EDI initiatives in multiple organizations.

She holds a BA in Political Science from Western University and the ICD.D corporate director designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors and University of Toronto Rotman School of Management. She also completed two levels of the innovation Governance Program (iGP), presented by the Council of Canadian Innovators and focused on the governance of Canadian tech companies.

Tannis Wengel
Director of Events & Communications, Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum

Tannis is a senior marketing and fundraising professional with practical, varied expertise in strategic planning, project management, event management and corporate partnership management.

Over the last 20 years Tannis has developed and implemented national marketing plans, new fundraising programs, large special events, and rebranding initiatives. She has been accountable for overseeing a large portfolio of signature fundraising events both abroad and here in Canada, managing all aspects of the event including logistics planning, critical path management, volunteer recruitment, participant communications, partner recognition and benefits, and data tracking. These events include large fundraising galas, global educational initiatives, national award shows, and corporate symposiums. Many of the events Tannis has organized have been bilingual.