With Canadian startups finding little success in developing successful partnerships with Canada’s public sector, the DMZ has brought on former Premier of New Brunswick, Brian Gallant as the organization’s first Government Relations mentor for entrepreneurs.

A role that will go in tandem with his position as Special Advisor on Innovation, Cybersecurity and Law to the President of Ryerson University, Dr. Mohamed Lachemi, Gallant will be leading mentorship programming, initiatives and events that will help startup founders create strategies that will secure relationships and objectives with all three levels of government.

“As we move forward in an era powered by innovation, I look forward to working with entrepreneurs and startups to help create lasting partnerships that will benefit Canadians and the economy,” said Brian Gallant, DMZ entrepreneur-in-residence (mentor), government relations. “The DMZ is leading the charge on a number of initiatives to develop a more diverse startup community and putting startup growth at the forefront of the government’s agenda. It’s an honour to play a small role in advancing this world renowned incubator.”

In 2014, Brian Gallant was sworn in as the 33rd Premier of New Brunswick at the age of 32, making him the youngest elected First Minister in Canada in a century. During his time in office, the province’s economy, exports and venture capital investments grew year after year. The Gallant government’s focus on fostering New Brunswick’s entrepreneurial spirit resulted in a record low unemployment rate and contributed to the development of a vibrant cybersecurity cluster within the province. Gallant’s achievements were recognized by the World Economic Forum in 2015, becoming the only Canadian named as a Young Global Leader.

“Brian Gallant is a true groundbreaker. Through his esteemed career and years of dedication in public service, entrepreneurship and innovation will develop influence and exceptional leadership in connecting startups to the public sector,” said Abdullah Snobar, executive director, DMZ. “We are fortunate to have such a skilled and passionate leader provide their expertise to our current roster, alum and the greater startup community to further elevate the knowledge gap around government relations.”

On Wednesday, November 20, Brian Gallant will be hosting a government relations workshop at the DMZ, which will be open to any Toronto-Waterloo corridor tech startups looking to build their public affairs strategy with all levels of government.

The DMZ is a leading business incubator for tech startups in Canada. They help startups build great businesses by connecting them with customers, capital, experts and a community of entrepreneurs and influencers.

The DMZ is a partner in StartUp Here Toronto.