Corporate Governance, Accountability, and Transparency

The Ottawa International Airport Authority’s mission is to be a leader in providing quality, safe, secure, sustainable, and affordable transportation services to the airport’s customers and communities, and be a driver of economic growth within Canada’s Capital Region.

The Board of Directors

The adoption of the National Airports Policy in 1994 resulted in the creation of local airport authorities across the country. These authorities were created with community-nominated Boards of Directors who were tasked with overseeing the management of their local facility.

The Ottawa International Airport Authority’s Board of Directors follows these guidelines, which are included in the Authority’s by-laws:

  • includes professional representation nominated by all three levels of government as well as community and business organizations;
  • Directors shall not be elected officials or government employees;
  • each Director has a fiduciary duty to the Airport Authority;
  • meets 8 to 10 times during the year;
  • views its principal responsibility as overseeing the conduct of the business and supervising management to ensure that long-term goals and strategies are met; and
  • must meet Conflict of Interest rules, adhere to the Authority’s Code of Business Conduct and the Public Accountability Principles for Canadian Airport Authorities.

Each Director has filed a conflict of interest declaration for 2018, as required by the Authority’s by-laws. Furthermore, to the Authority’s knowledge, all Directors are in compliance with the conflict of interest and code of conduct guidelines noted above.


The Authority established by-laws at incorporation in 1995, which were amended in 2003, in 2010, and again in 2014, following its continuance under the Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act. Under the current by-laws, the selecting bodies that provide nominees to the 14-member Board are as follows:

Minister of Transport (Government of Canada) 2
Government of Ontario 1
City of Ottawa 2
City of Gatineau 1
Ottawa Board of Trade 1
Ottawa Tourism and Convention Authority 1
Chambre de commerce de Gatineau 1
Invest Ottawa 1
At Large 4
Total 14

A Director’s term of office is a maximum of three years. Each Director may be re-elected for additional terms, but may not serve as a Director for more than nine years.

The qualifications required of a Director are included in the by-laws. Collectively, the Directors shall have experience in the fields of law, engineering, accounting and management, and air carrier management. In addition, the by-laws include restrictions to eliminate possible conflicts of interest arising from relationships with selecting bodies, thereby ensuring the independence of Directors and reinforcing their fiduciary responsibilities to the Authority. The Governance Committee has the power to ensure that the selecting bodies provide candidates for nomination to the Board having the skills and expertise necessary for the Board as a whole to carry out its duties.

The following represents the composition of the Board of Directors as at December 31st, 2018.

Chris Carruthers
Chair of the Board
Health Care Consultant
Corporate Director
At Large
Craig Bater(2)(4)
Major Infrastructure and Environment Committee
Lawyer Ottawa Board of Trade
John Boyd(1) Partner
Client First Group
Government of Ontario
Dick Brown(3)(4) Retired Executive Ottawa Tourism
Code Cubitt(2)(3) Managing Director
Mistral Venture Partners
Invest Ottawa
Scott Eaton(1)
Chair, Audit Committee
Business Lawyer At Large
Michèle Lafontaine(4) Notary
PME Inter Notaires
Ville de Gatineau
Brendan McGuinty(2)
Chair, Governance Committee
Strategies 360 Inc.
City of Ottawa
Carole Presseault(3)
Chair, Human Resources and Compensation Committee
Principal Consultant
Presseault Strategies+
Chambre de commerce de Gatineau
Jacques Sauvé(1)(4) Consulting Engineer At Large
Lisa Stilborn(1)(2) Vice-President
Canadian Fuels Association
City of Ottawa
Janice Traversy(1)(3) Retired Airline Executive
At Large

(1) Member of Audit Committee
(2) Member of Governance Committee
(3) Member of Human Resources & Compensation Committee
(4) Member of Major Infrastructure and Environment Committee

Director’s Compensation in 2018

Annual Retainer

  • Chair: $50,679
  • Audit Committee Chair: $24,777
  • Committee Chairs: $22,525
  • All other Directors: $13,514

Per meeting fee

  • $621 per meeting
  • $225 per teleconference
Attendance at Board and Committee Meetings
Craig Bater 9 out of 9 10 out of 10
Thom Bennett (1) 2 out of 2 2 out of 2
John Boyd 9 out of 9 6 out of 6
Dick Brown 9 out of 9 11 out of 11
Chris Carruthers 9 out of 9 20 out of 21
Code Cubitt 8 out of 9 6 out of 6
Scott Eaton 8 out of 9 6 out of 6
Michèle Lafontaine 9 out of 9 5 out of 6
Brendan McGuinty 9 out of 9 4 out of 4
Carole Presseault 9 out of 9 5 out of 5
Jacques Sauvé 9 out of 9 9 out of 9
Lisa Stilborn 7 out of 9 9 out of 10
Janice Traversy 9 out of 9 11 out of 11

(1) Term ended April 25, 2018

Committees of the Board

The following is a list of Committees of the Board and the general mandate of each:

Governance Committee

  • oversight and initiation of procedures to deliver best practices in the area of corporate governance;
  • review the Annual Report as prepared by the President;
  • establish the nomination procedures, the skill sets required for nominees and the length of term of selected nominees;
  • evaluate and recommend nominees to the Board;
  • oversee the application of Conflict of Interest rules to Board members and nominees;
  • develop a process for nomination of the Chair of the Board and oversee such process;
  • review the annual Board evaluation process and any associated recommendations for change;
  • review recommendations of the Chair of the Board regarding composition of the Committees of the Board and appointment of the Committee Chairs;
  • review changes to the Charters of all Board Committees and recommend changes for Board approval;
  • review Director compensation and recommend any changes for Board approval; and
  • review the Authority’s structures and procedures to ensure the Board is able to function independent from management.

Major Infrastructure and Environment Committee

  • oversee the Authority’s major infrastructure projects;
  • oversee best practices in the area of environmental stewardship;
  • review reports and other documents related to the design, cost, quality, schedule, risk, and construction of proposed major infrastructure projects;
  • review updates to the Authority’s Master Plan;
  • review the infrastructure investment plans prepared as part of the annual Business Plan; and
  • review the Authority’s environmental management reports including issues related to noise.

Audit Committee

  • assist the Board in fulfilling its oversight responsibilities with regard to financial risk management, financial reporting and audit functions;
  • review and report to the Board with regard to the independence and performance of the external auditor;
  • review selection, appointment, compensation, retention, and termination and oversee the work of the Authority’s external auditor. Recommend to the members the appointment of the external auditor for approval. Monitor audit engagement partner rotation requirements. The external auditor reports to the Audit Committee;
  • annually review with the external auditors and management matters relating to conduct of the annual audit and any recommendations of the auditors regarding internal controls;
  • annually review proposed fiscal operating and capital budgets for recommendation to and approval by the Board;
  • review the annual audited financial statements of the Authority for recommendation to and approval by the Board;
  • review and approve quarterly financial statements of the Authority;
  • review the appointment and performance of the chief internal auditor and all matters relating to the work plan of the internal audit function, including significant reports prepared by internal audit together with management’s response and follow-up to these reports;
  • oversee the Authority’s processes for enterprise risk management; and
  • review matters having a material financial impact on the Authority, including financing requirements and options, and recommendation to the Board.

Human Resources & Compensation Committee

  • review succession plans for senior management;
  • review the competitiveness and appropriateness of the Authority’s policies regarding management compensation, including the incentive plan, pension plans, benefits, and all other aspects of compensation;
  • recommend to the Board the remuneration plan for excluded employees as well as changes to collective agreements for unionized employees; and
  • review the results of the tri-annual employee satisfaction survey.

Other ad-hoc committees may be formed from time to time that include members of the Board of Directors.


The Authority’s policy is to be accountable to the community and to be transparent in relations with its business and customers. The Authority’s mandate, as set out in its Articles of Continuance, establishes a standard against which its performance can be measured.

The mandate of the Authority is:

  • to manage, operate and develop the Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International Airport, the premises of which will be leased to the Authority by Transport Canada, and any other airport in the National Capital Region for which the Authority becomes responsible, in a safe, secure, efficient, cost effective, and financially viable manner with reasonable airport user charges and equitable access to all carriers;
  • to undertake and promote the development of airport lands, for which it is responsible, for uses that are compatible with air transportation activities; and
  • to expand transportation facilities and generate economic activity in ways which are compatible with air transportation activities.

In executing its objects, the Authority shall confer regularly with governments and community entities on matters affecting the operation and development of the airports for which it is responsible and shall engage only in those activities that are consistent with its objects.

The Authority accounts for its actions to the community in a number of ways:

  • by publishing an Annual Report;
  • by hosting an Annual Public Meeting;
  • by hosting an annual meeting with selecting bodies;
  • by establishing and/or reporting to the following consultation committees:
    • Airport Noise Committee
    • Airline Consultative Committee
    • Airport Operators Committee
    • Community Consultative Committee
    • Airside Safety Committee;
  • through meetings and/or consultations with local city officials;
  • through extensive public consultations on the periodic renewal of the Airport Master Plan, which was updated in 1998, 2008 and again in early 2018, and the Land Use Plan, which was last updated and approved by the Minister of transport in 2018; and
  • by maintaining a corporate website at

In addition, a performance review must be conducted at least once every five years, in keeping with the Authority’s Ground Lease with Transport Canada. This performance review was last completed in February 2017.


Procurement and Contracting

The Authority is transparent in its procurement practices. The Public Accountability Principles for Canadian Airport Authorities and the Authority’s Ground Lease require that all contracts for the procurement of goods, services, and construction services with a value in excess of $116,305 ($75,000 in 1994 dollars adjusted for CPI to December 31st, 2018), must be awarded through a competitive public tendering process, or be disclosed in the Authority’s Annual Report together with the reasons why they were not awarded through a public competitive process.

Contracts in excess of $116,305 that were not awarded on the basis of a public competitive process during 2018:

Plan Group $318,731
Supply, deliver and install upgrade to security door/fire alarm program logic controller interfaces
See A below
ThyssenKrupp Airport Systems Inc. $252,230
Supply, deliver and install upgraded operating systems on the Phase II Terminal Passenger Boarding Bridges
See B below

A – Sole source to ensure integration and functionality with existing systems and equipment originally purchased following a public competitive process.
B – Single source – specialized proprietary equipment and/or services available from only one supplier.

Executive Management Salary Ranges

The base salary range for the President of the Authority in 2018 was between $298,979 and $365,543. The base salary range for Vice Presidents in 2018 was between $118,988 and $235,727.

In addition, under the management incentive plan for non-represented employees, the President and the Vice Presidents receive pay at risk following fiscal year end which payments are based on achieving performance targets/objectives that are consistent with the Authority’s Strategic Plan.

Fees and Charges

The Authority provides 60 days advance notice in local news media for all changes in user charges (excluding rent), together with an explanation for the noted increase. This includes aeronautical fees charged to air carriers and airport improvement fees (AIF).

While the Authority’s goal is to keep the aeronautical fees it charges air carriers reasonable, it has been necessary to adjust these fees on occasion. The Authority’s process for adjusting aeronautical fees and charges includes:

  • prior to any change, consulting with air carriers through the Airline Consultative Committee, with necessary explanations and calculations showing how these fees were determined, at least 90 days in advance of the effective date of the change; and
  • providing 60 days notice of the increase in fees to the airlines.

The Authority publicizes the reason for imposing an AIF, or for making changes to the fee. It last did this when it announced on December 14th, 2013 that it was increasing its fee to $23 effective March 1st, 2014. The purpose of the existing AIF is to pay for the construction of, and the debt associated with, the Airport Authority’s major infrastructure construction programs.

The process for adjusting AIFs is similar to the process for adjusting aeronautical fees and charges, including public notice in the local news media.

Public Access to Documents

In accordance with Public Accountability Principles for Canadian Airport Authorities, the Airport Authority makes available by appointment the following documents for examination, at no charge, during its usual business hours:

  • the current Airport Master Plan;
  • a summary of the Authority’s current Business and Strategic Plans;
  • the most recent and the previous annual financial statements of the Authority, with the accompanying auditors reports (included in each year’s Annual Report);
  • its five most recent Annual Reports, each of which includes a general summary of the Authority’s affairs during the previous fiscal year;
  • summaries of the Authority’s five most recent Business Plans;
  • the Authority’s Articles of Incorporation (its letters patent) and by-laws, including any amendments;
  • all signed airport transfer agreements; and
  • a summary of the Authority’s Five-year Performance Review document.

The Board of Directors (from left to right): Scott Eaton, Carole Presseault, Dick Brown, Craig Bater, Michèle Lafontaine, Code Cubitt, Mark Laroche (President & CEO), Christopher Carruthers (Chair), Janice Traversy, Jacques Sauvé, Brendan McGuinty, John Boyd, Lisa Stilborn