Prior to joining the National Arts Centre as its first Director, Diversity and Inclusion, in May 2021, Germaine Chazou-Essindi was the Director of National Policy, Programs and Partnerships at the Department of Women and Gender Equality Canada (WAGE), responsible for more than 150 complex national projects involving diverse communities, including Indigenous women, Black women and women of colour (IBPOC), the LGBTQ2A+ community, as well as other vulnerable groups (e.g. women with disabilities). Germaine Chazou-Essindi is an accomplished leader with over 15 years of experience in managing grant and contribution programs within the federal government.
She has played a leading role at WAGE as a co-champion for diversity and inclusion. She has long worked to advance the vision of an inclusive workplace encompassing concepts and practices of accessibility, accommodation, equality, and anti-discrimination and anti-harassment. Her responsibilities included the implementation of anti-racism and anti-oppression training and the development of the departmental diversity and inclusion strategy.
Germaine has also worked to develop partnerships and networking with Indigenous communities across Canada. Her knowledge of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples has made her an important resource in the Indigenous recruitment process. An excellent communicator, she has raised awareness of inclusion and diversity issues, as well as the challenges faced by some employees.
She is known for her ability to manage challenges effectively and for her ability to bring together the views of different stakeholders. Her extensive experience and knowledge of key concepts—including gender-based analysis plus (GBA+) and intersectionality—have been appreciated by both staff and senior managers at WAGE.
Germaine holds a Specialized Bachelor’s degree in Human Sciences (Conflict Studies) from Saint Paul University. She has also completed several training sessions on diversity and inclusion issues offered by the Public Service of Canada, as well as training on mediation and negotiation offered by the Canadian Institute for Conflict Resolution.
Germaine Chazou-Essindi is the recipient of the Excellence in Innovation Award and the Inspiration Award from WAGE. She is a dynamic, committed leader with integrity who has been involved in the community since her teenage years. Her dedication has earned her three Lioness of the Year Awards from the Cameroonian Community of Canada.
Germaine lives in Ottawa with her husband and two boys.