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Chisholm Chisholm

Board of Directors memberDirector of external relations, Rio Tinto Canada

The Terry Fox Research Institute is pleased to announce that Carolyn Chisholm, a long-time Terry Fox supporter and an expert in federal and provincial government affairs and public policy, has joined TFRI’s Board of Directors.

Chisholm formerly served on TFRI’s research advisory council for Ontario and today is director of external relations for Rio Tinto Canada.  She holds two decades of experience in external affairs and public policy in both the public and private sectors. She and her family have been dedicated participants in the annual Terry Fox Run for more than 20 years.

“My first connection to Terry Fox was back in Grade 8 when I was so inspired by Terry's Marathon of Hope, that I did a speech on what it means to be a hero,” she says.  “Fast forward almost two decades, I got the chance to work with the organization on the establishment of the Michael Smith Genome Sciences Centre in BC, which marked a paradigm shift in cancer research.  As a family, my husband Ron and our two daughters, Mairi and Emily, have participated for twenty years in the Terry Fox Run.  Like Christmas, it has become a tradition we don't miss.  I am thrilled to continue to be affiliated with this important and pioneering organization."

Chisholm is actively engaged in environment, sustainability and regulatory affairs, leading advocacy and engagement strategies for Rio Tinto at the federal and provincial levels.  Prior to joining Rio Tinto, Carolyn worked for more than twenty years in external affairs and public policy, in the private sector as Vice President of the Natural Resources and Environment Group with a public affairs firm, and as senior advisors to Ministers at the federal and provincial levels. 

“TFRI is extremely fortunate to have Carolyn join our Board of Directors as we launch two large, pan-Canadian initiatives supported by the Government of Canada and in collaboration with dozens of research partners. Her government relations experience in both the public and private sectors and her knowledge of government policy and complexity, will greatly inform our work in these new areas as well as enrich our Institute and our Board,” says Dr. Christopher Paige, chair of TFRI’s Board of Directors.

“As a long-time supporter of Terry Fox and the Marathon of Hope, Carolyn embodies the dedication and spirit of the millions of Terry Foxers and Canadians who continue to honour Terry as a hero four decades later.  We are delighted to have her join us in this important role,” says Dr. Victor Ling, TFRI president and scientific director. “Her expertise will be invaluable as TFRI evolves over the next few years in our shared goal of eradicating cancer with these new precision medicine initiatives.”

Chisholm holds a Bachelor of Arts degree (First Class Honours) in Political Science from St. Francis Xavier University, and a Master’s in Public Administration from Carleton University. She and her family live in Kemptville, Ontario.

She is a member of the Board of Directors of her local hospital and a founding member of Women for Nature. She is also an active board member of many industry associations on behalf of Rio Tinto, including the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, and Mining Association of Canada.