Board of Directors

Vanessa Thomas
Canada’s universal healthcare system is both a key element of our national identity and a source of pride, grounded in treating citizens fairly and equitably. Hope Air’s mandate is well-aligned with what Canadians value by materially addressing access to healthcare for Canadians who do not reside within reasonable reach of it. Hope Air is a great example of Canadians, corporations and government coming together to bridge a material gap. I am grateful for the opportunity to help assure and advance the important work and mandate of Hope Air.
Vanessa Thomas is an accomplished technology sector executive with more than 20 years of global business experience. Vanessa’s expertise is in delivering technology-inspired and enabled business transformation in conjunction with strategic partners. She held progressive leadership roles with Nortel Networks including institutionalizing Lean Six Sigma within the company culture and management decision-making framework.  Her tenure with Nortel culminated with successfully transitioning a ~$1B global support services business to each of the buyers as part of Canada’s largest global bankruptcy case.  Vanessa also held multiple senior leadership roles with Avaya in global product management and sales. She led a large multi-disciplinary team to design and bring to market a premier solution driving well over $500M annually. She transitioned to executive roles with Americas sales where annual accountability grew to $800M+. A core theme across Vanessa’s career is tuning into and delivering for the customer experience through the design and delivery of technology-inspired solutions.

Vanessa earned her bachelor of commerce with honours degree through Carleton University, international MBA with University of Ottawa, and has completed executive programs with both Cornell University and MIT. Vanessa recently completed board of directors training with Corporate Directors International and is an active member with the Institute of Corporate Directors.  She is a member of Women in Communications and Technology and actively mentors women in the program.