Public Policy Award

Couchiching Award Leadership in Public Policy 

The Couchiching Award for Public Policy Leadership honours the accomplishments of Canadians who have demonstrated bold leadership in public policy. The award recognizes exemplary actions taken by an individual to formulate and implement policy that has had a positive impact on Canada or a community within Canada. Past recipients have included Jane Jacobs, Henry Morgentaler, Elizabeth May, the Honourable Lincoln Alexander, the Honourable Stephane Dion, David Dodge, Mark Carney and the Honourable William Davis.

The Couchiching Award for Public Policy Leadership will be presented at the 2016 Gala which will be held April 11, 2016 at Hart House, Toronto, ON.

Visit our 2015 Gala photo gallery.



2016 Recipient

anne golden

The Couchiching Institute on Public Affairs is pleased to announce Dr. Anne Golden OC, OOnt as the 14th recipient of the prestigious Couchiching Award for Public Policy Leadership.

The 2016 Award recognizes Dr. Golden’s long and distinguished career, throughout which she has made landmark contributions to public policy and social justice in Canada. A strong and long-term advocate for social policy issues with significant and important contributions to policy making and policy thinking in this country, Dr. Golden’s is being recognized for her work in the areas of housing and homelessness.  

“Dr. Golden has so many accomplishments to her credit,” said Institute President Adam Redish. “Her leadership of the Conference Board of Canada and the United Way of Greater Toronto, her work on social policy and urban issues, and perhaps most importantly, her work on homelessness and housing issues in Canada make her a worthy recipient of he Couchiching Award for Public Policy Leadership.”

Not only was Dr. Golden the driving force behind unique approaches to housing and homelessness policy, she did so in direct contradiction of the conventional orthodoxy of the time, which focused on shrinking the size of government and significant fiscal restraint. Balancing a strong mix of public policy and prudent fiscal approaches, Dr. Golden was able to chart a course to address a significant public policy issue and a key social policy need.


Anne Golden, Ph.D., C.M., was appointed as Distinguished Visiting Scholar and Special Advisor at Ryerson University, beginning September 1, 2012, where she serves as Co­Director of the Ryerson City Building Institute. Her current Board commitments include membership on Metrolinx, the regional transit agency. In 2014, Dr. Golden spent three months at the Woodrow Wilson Center in DC, as a Visiting Policy Scholar, doing research on governance of regional transit systems. Dr. Golden was the President and CEO of The Conference Board of Canada, the country’s foremost independent not­for­profit applied research organization, from 2001 to 2012. Previously, she was President of the United Way of Greater Toronto for 14 years. She earned national profile for her work as Chair of the Homelessness Action Task Force (1999), the Greater Toronto Area Task Force (1996), and most recently, the Premier of Ontario’s Transit Investment Strategy Advisory Panel (2013).

Dr. Golden was appointed as a member of the Order of Canada in 2003 and as a member of the Order of Ontario in 2013. She has received eight honorary doctorates.  Most recent awards include the Canadian Urban Institute’s Jane Jacobs Lifetime Achievement Award, The Conference Board of Canada’s 2012 Honorary Associate Award, and Alumni of Influence Award of the Top 100 People to Graduate from University College, University of Toronto.

2016 Summer Conference

The Canada Project

Identity, Citizenship, and Nationhood in a Changing World

August 5-7, 2016
The YMCA Geneva Park Conference Centre, Orillia, ON

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Couchiching Connects
April 2017
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