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Meet Our Team

Craig Alexander
Craig Alexander
Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist

Craig Alexander brings over 20 years of experience in the private sector as an economic and financial forecaster to the position of Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist. Mr. Alexander oversees the Board’s Economics Department. This group produces macroeconomic forecasts for the Canadian economy, provinces, territories, and industries. It runs centres on global commerce, tourism and municipal studies. There are also networks and centres related to immigration, skills and education policy areas that have a significant impact on Canadian labour market outcomes. Previously, Craig was Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist for TD Bank Group—the second largest bank in Canada and the eighth largest in the United States. Prior to joining the private sector, he spent four years as an economist at Statistics Canada.

Craig is a strong and motivational public speaker who crosses the country each year giving presentations on the state of the economy and policy issues. He is a strong supporter of literacy and a champion of the charitable sector, for which he received a Queen’s Jubilee Medal.

He is a former two-term president of the Canadian Association for Business Economics and holds a graduate degree in economics from the University of Toronto.

Craig joined The Conference Board of Canada in September 2016

Pedro Antunes
Pedro Antunes
Executive Director, Economic Outlook and Analysis, and Deputy Chief Economist

As the Boards Executive Director, Economic Outlook and Analysis and Deputy Chief Economist, Pedro Antunes is responsible for managing a team of economists in producing the Conference Board's medium and long-term economic forecasts along with other economic indicators and reports. Pedro is a spokesperson for the Conference Board and does presentations on the forecast to clients and the public and is often cited in the media.

Pedro joined the Conference Board as an economist in 1991 after working with the Canadian Forecasting Group at the Bank of Canada. He has moved progressively into more senior positions since joining the Board. Prior to his current role, he was Director of the Conference Board's National and Provincial forecast team; and was responsible for custom research work and economic analysis.

In addition to the regular forecast publications, Pedro has been researching the impact of demographic change on the fiscal sustainability of health care, productivity, and long-term economic growth. Pedro also worked on several international projects, helping decision-makers in Tunisia, Morocco, Jordan and Ukraine develop appropriate forecasting and policy analysis tools.

Matthew Stewart
Matthew Stewart
Director, National Forecast, Forecasting and Analysis

Matthew Stewart is Director, National Forecast with the Conference Board specializing in the Canadian and world economy. Matthew is currently advising international clients on the economy and has been assisting the Ukrainian federal government and city level governments in developing strategic plans. In Canada, he has been responsible for designing and building a demand and supply model for physicians based on changing disease patterns. Matthew has appeared on TV and radio numerous times as an expert on the Canadian Economy and government finances. He has recently authored two chapters in a book titled Lessons from the Recession and Financial Crisis.

Matt has a M.A. (Economics) from McMaster University and a B.A. (Honours Economics) from The University of Western Ontario.

Kareem El-Assal
Kareem El-Assal
Senior Research Associate and Senior Network Manager, Immigration

Kareem manages the Conference Board's immigration research and annual Canadian Immigration Summit. His research covers various areas including permanent resident selection, settlement and integration, temporary foreign worker programs, refugees, international students, intergovernmental relations, and entrepreneur and investor programs. He often shares the Conference Board's research findings with the media.

Prior to joining the Conference Board, he worked for the Mission of Canada to the European Union, the British Chamber of Commerce, Porter Novelli Brussels, and the International Service for Human Rights in Switzerland. Kareem has also worked for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, and the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada.

He is a graduate of the University of Toronto (BA) and Durham University (MA).

Daniel Fields
Daniel Fields
Economist, National Forecast

Daniel joined the National Economic Forecast team in 2013. His key responsibilities include monitoring the fiscal situation within the various levels of government and contributing to a wide variety of ongoing fiscal projects such as the Fiscal Snapshots Series. These reports look at the current condition of provincial economics and their government's fiscal challenges by providing a short- and medium term outlook in areas such as tax revenue and federal transfers as well as spending in key categories such as health care and education. This analysis feeds into the provincial forecast, where Daniel completes the output forecast for government spending. Daniel also completes the outlook for Prince Edward Island.

Daniel received his M.A. in economics from Queen's University, and also holds a B.Math. in economics and statistics from Carleton University.

Jo-Leen Folz
Jo-Leen Folz
Administrative and Meetings Coordinator, Forecasting and Analysis
Jo-Leen Folz is the Administrative and Meetings Coordinator for the Global Commerce Centre. Jo-Leen coordinates the Centre's twice-yearly meetings, acts as a member liaison and provides administrative support for all Centre activities and research. In addition to her role in the Global Commerce Centre, Jo-Leen provides administrative support to the Canadian Tourism Research Institute and is the back-up to Executive Assistant to the Vice-President & Chief Economist. Jo-Leen has over 10 years of work experience in office administration and project coordination.

2018 Conferences

Entrepreneur & Investor Immigration Summit 2018
Nov. 27–28, 2018 | Ottawa

Canadian Immigration Summit 2018
May 30–31, 2018 | Ottawa

Past Conferences

Canadian Immigration Summit 2017
May 9–10, 2017 | Ottawa

Entrepreneur & Investor Immigration Summit 2016
December 6–7, 2016 | Toronto

Canadian Immigration Summit 2016
April 4–5, 2016 | Ottawa

Canadian Immigration Summit 2015
April 13–15, 2015

Social Media

Follow us on Twitter @ImmigrationCBoC

Contact Us

Kareem El-Assal
Senior Research Associate and Senior Network Manager, Immigration