Elizabeth Cannon

President Emerita, University of Calgary

Role: Fellow

Site: CDL-Rockies

Stream: Prime

Dr. Elizabeth Cannon is president emerita of the University of Calgary after serving as president and vice chancellor from July, 2010 until December, 2018. Prior to her term as president, Dr. Cannon was dean of the Schulich School of Engineering at the University of Calgary. An expert in geomatics engineering and a Professional Engineer, Dr. Cannon’s research has been on the forefront of Global Positioning Systems (GPS) since 1984 in both industrial and academic environments, and she has commercialized technology to over 200 agencies worldwide. Dr. Cannon’s work has been recognized with many national and international honours including the Johannes Kepler Award from the U.S. Institute of Navigation, an NSERC Steacie Award and the Gold Medal Award from Engineers Canada.

Dr. Cannon is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Canadian Academy of Engineering as well as an elected foreign associate of the US National Academy of Engineering. She served as co-chair of the Business-Higher Education Roundtable, is a past chair of Universities Canada, and was a member of the federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development’s Science, Technology and Innovation Council (STIC). Dr. Cannon is currently a member of numerous boards and advisory councils, and is a seed-stage investor, particularly in female-founded companies.

In 1998, Dr. Cannon was selected as one of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 and in 2006 was named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women by the Women’s Executive Network. She has received five honorary degrees. In June, 2019, she was named an Officer of the Order of Canada and in 2022 was inducted into the Alberta Order of Excellence. In 2021, she received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Axis Connects Calgary Influential Business Awards and was inducted into the Junior Achievement Southern Alberta Business Hall of Fame in 2022.