Commonwealth Sport Canada Appoints Carlene Variyan to the Board of Directors

Commonwealth Sport Canada (CSC) is pleased to announce the addition of Carlene Variyan (Ottawa, Ontario) as a Director-at-Large on its Board of Directors. Variyan brings significant government relations experience as well as communications, policy, and finance expertise to CSC.

Carlene Variyan has worked at the most senior levels of the federal government, successfully leading policy, communications, parliamentary affairs, and other consequential work. Variyan spent a total of 15 years working on Parliament Hill. She served Cabinet ministers in the federal government as a Chief of Staff, and prior to that as Deputy Chief of Staff and Director of Communications. In these roles, she advised Cabinet Ministers holding economic, social, and security portfolios, as well as central agencies. Variyan’s breadth of experience in government includes the delivery of a Federal Budget, the resolution of major collective bargaining disputes, the coordination of federal response to national security incidents, and collaboration with Canada’s energy sector on decarbonization and clean technology.

From 2014 to 2016, she served on the National Board of Directors of the Liberal Party of Canada and is also a former Chair of the Judy Lamarsh Fund, which raises funds for women running for office. Variyan has held senior roles on the Liberal Party of Canada’s national campaign teams for the 2015, 2019, and 2021 federal elections. She appears frequently as a political commentator and analyst on CTV, CPAC, and other media platforms. Originally from rural Saskatchewan, Variyan holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) from Carleton University and is an accountant by training. She is fluent in both of Canada’s official languages. Currently Variyan is an Associate Vice-President at Summa Strategies, a leading government relations and communications firm in Ottawa.

“Commonwealth Sport Canada has a proud and unique history in our country of empowering Canadian athletes and delivering sport for development programs abroad. I am grateful to CSC's leadership for putting their trust in me, and I look forward to making meaningful contributions to our organization and those it supports,” says Carlene.

“Commonwealth Sport Canada takes pride in our governance and management practices,” said Claire Carver-Dias, CSC President. “Inclusion of Carlene Variyan on our Board of Directors will not only help strengthen CSC’s ability to promote and support our core values of Humanity, Equality, and Destiny but will also provide better insight into CSC’s government relations activities.”

Variyan joins recently elected (November 2022) governance team members including Carver-Dias (President), Jean Emmanuel Pierre-Charles (Athlete Representative) and newly elected Directors-at-large Ava Hill, Patrick Kenny, Greg Maychak, and Myles Spencer. Continuing directors of the Board include Rick Powers (Past President), Keith Gillam (Treasurer), and Directors-at-Large Trevino Betty, David Bedford, and Karen Hacker. For a complete list of the governance team, please visit: