Opportunities - Selection Processes


Chief Public Health Officer, Public Health Agency of Canada,

Appointment Opportunity

We know that our country is stronger — and our government more effective — when decision-makers reflect Canada’s diversity. Moving forward, the Government of Canada will use an appointment process that is transparent and merit-based, strives for gender parity, and ensures that Indigenous Canadians and minority groups are properly represented in positions of leadership. We will continue to search for Canadians who reflect the values that we all embrace: inclusion, honesty, fiscal prudence, and generosity of spirit. Together, we will build a government as diverse as Canada.

The overarching goal of the Minister of Health is to strengthen our publicly-funded universal health care system and ensure that it adapts to new challenges.

The Government of Canada is currently seeking applications from diverse and talented Canadians from across the country who are interested in the following position:

Chief Public Health Officer (full-time position)

Public Health Agency of Canada

The Public Health Agency of Canada is the main Government of Canada agency responsible for public health in Canada. The Agency’s primary goal is to strengthen Canada’s capacity to protect and improve the health of Canadians and to help reduce pressures on the health-care system. To do this, the Agency is working to build an effective public health system that enables Canadians to achieve better health and well-being in their daily lives by promoting good health, helping prevent and control chronic diseases and injury, and protecting Canadians from infectious diseases and other threats to their health. The Agency is also committed to reducing health disparities between the most advantaged and disadvantaged Canadians.

The Chief Public Health Officer is responsible for providing leadership to the Public Health Agency of Canada and providing advice to the Minister of Health and, as appropriate, working with other federal departments and agencies, provincial/territorial and municipal governments, the international community, the public health community and Canadians on public health issues. The Chief Public Health Officer is the lead public health professional of the Government of Canada, in particular, during public health emergencies and will play a leadership role in national public health matters and citizen engagement in public health.

Further details about the organization and its activities can be found on the Public Health Agency of Canada's website.

Candidates must apply online by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on February 27, 2017, via the Governor in Council website. Your cover letter should be addressed to the Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet (Senior Personnel), Privy Council Office, and should be sent only through the on-line application.

Position Location: National Capital Region

Official Languages and Diversity

The Government of Canada will consider bilingual proficiency and diversity in assessing candidates for this position. You are therefore encouraged to include in your online profile your ability to speak and understand your second official language. Preference may be given to candidates who are members of one or more of the following groups: women, Indigenous Canadians, persons with disabilities, and members of visible minorities.

To be considered for this position, please provide examples from your career that clearly demonstrate how you meet the following requirements in your application. Please note that the maximum size of each document uploaded as part of your application is 3 MB. A maximum of five (5) documents may be uploaded in respect of any application, including the cover letter and curriculum vitae.

Education and Experience

  • The Chief Public Health Officer shall be a health professional who has qualifications in the field of public health (statutory); this could include a licensed health professional qualified in medicine, nursing, or other profession in the field of public health;
  • Postgraduate training and experience in public health or a closely related field would be considered an asset;
  • Proven senior level experience in providing strategic advice and making evidence-based decisions on complex and sensitive issues;
  • Experience in building and maintaining productive and multipartite relationships with partner organizations, diverse stakeholders and academia;
  • Experience as an official level spokesperson on public health issues, particularly emergencies, would be considered an asset;
  • Experience in developing and coordinating government policies, programs and services in the area of public health would be considered an asset; and
  • Experience in developing and implementing comprehensive strategies for disease prevention and control would be considered an asset.

If you are selected for an interview, the following criteria will be assessed:

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Knowledge of the mandate and activities of the Public Health Agency of Canada as well as the legislative framework within which it operates;
  • Knowledge of government and public policy environments, processes and best practices;
  • Knowledge of the respective roles of federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments in health system matters;
  • Knowledge of the principles and practices of public health and of the social and health care fields;
  • Knowledge of the breadth and depth of public health issues within Canada and internationally;
  • Proven ability to build and maintain effective relationships and partnerships, including with the broader public health, research and academic communities;
  • Ability to identify, analyze and define priorities and strategies and deal with complex and sensitive issues;
  • Ability to provide advice to Ministers and, as appropriate, work with other federal departments and agencies, provincial/territorial governments, the international community, health practitioners and Canadians on public health issues; and
  • Ability as the lead public health professional of the Government of Canada, to communicate with governments, public health authorities or organizations in the public health field within Canada or internationally, as well as with the public, voluntary organizations in the public health field or the private sector for the purpose of providing information, or seeking their views, about public health issues.

Language Requirements

Proficiency in both official languages would be preferred.

If you move on to the next stage of the selection process, we will contact your references to verify how you have demonstrated the Experience requirements and the following Personal Attributes in your current and recently held positions:

  • High ethical standards and integrity
  • Superior interpersonal skills
  • Tact and diplomacy
  • Calm under pressure
  • Sound judgement

Eligibility Factors and Conditions of Employment

In your application, it will be important that you confirm you meet the following requirements:

  • You are a health professional who has qualifications in the field of public health (statutory).
  • You reside in or are willing to relocate to the National Capital Region or to a location within reasonable commuting distance.

If you are appointed to this position:

You must comply with the Ethical and Political Activity Guidelines for Public Office Holders throughout your appointment as a term and condition of employment. The guidelines are available on the Governor in Council Appointments website, under Forms and reference material.

You will be subject to the Conflict of Interest Act. Public office holders appointed on a full-time basis must submit to the Office of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner, within 60 days of appointment, a confidential report in which they disclose all of their assets, liabilities and outside activities. For more information, please visit the Office of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner’s website.

A link to this notice will be placed in the Canada Gazette to assist the Governor in Council in identifying qualified candidates for this position. It is not, however, intended to be the sole means of recruitment.

A roster of qualified candidates may be established and may be used for similar opportunities.