About Us

Complex challenges need an all hands on deck approach, and collective impact is what CivicAction does best. Our track record speaks for itself; as a premier civic engagement organization in Canada we have nearly two decades of experience creating and implementing effective solutions to the most pressing challenges in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.

Just how do we do it? Every four years we hold a Summit to identify which issues are keeping the region up at night. Because we’re CivicAction, not civic chit chat, we then hit the pavement and get to work, leveraging partnerships across sectors to create initiatives that transform our region.


To boost civic engagement and build better cities.


Drive Action

We are relentlessly driven and tenaciously curious. We set ambitious goals, stretch to meet them, take informed action, and drive measurable impact.

Harness Collective Wisdom

We leverage the wisdom of crowds and are a multiplying force for action. We believe that collaboration leads to stronger outcomes and that when we work together, we become more than the sum of our parts.

Cultivate Inclusion

We unrelentingly work towards a culture of inclusion. We embrace diversity and seek to create an environment that values the perspectives, experiences, abilities and aspirations of all.

Be Bold

We don’t settle for the status quo. We experiment, learn and work continuously to achieve better outcomes.

Integrity at our Core

We are non-partisan in all we do and believe trust & integrity are core to who we are. With no preconceived notion of the ultimate solution, we build trusted relationships and strive to act in ways that are principled, decent, balanced and fair.


CivicAction is committed to helping build a city-region that is equitable, inclusive and accessible. We believe that diverse, inclusive leadership leads to deeper impact on the issues we address and creates a more prosperous region for all.

We are sensitive to the fact that certain groups experience marginalization and encounter barriers to full access and participation in the region. We promote respect, equity, access and participation of all individuals who interact with the organization especially those who face barriers. CivicAction is also working towards more diverse and inclusive leadership across the region through our DiverseCity Fellows program, established in 2008.


CivicAction acknowledges that the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area is situated upon traditional and current Indigenous territories that include the Wendat, Haudenosaunee, Anishnaabeg, Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation, and Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation. The treaties that cover these territories include the Dish With One Spoon Wampum Belt Covenant – an agreement between the Iroquois Confederacy and the Ojibwe and allied nations to peaceably share and care for the resources around the Great Lakes – and the Upper Canada Treaties.

Today, the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area is still home to many Indigenous people from across Turtle Island (North America) and we recognize the historical oppression and inequalities that they continue to face. In our role as a civic convener, CivicAction is committed to rebuilding and renewing respectful relationships between Indigenous and non-indigenous people and support the important work of The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

“We need leaders who understand the diversity of our communities’ needs and are ready to inspire trust, empower others, and have the passion to drive lasting change. I’ve seen first-hand how CivicAction promotes collaboration among city-building organizations and through this, improves our entire region.”

Beth Wilson, CivicAction Board of Directors; CEO, Dentons LLP


“Toronto’s gift to the world could be this unique and powerful model of city-building that comes from collective leadership.”

David Pecaut, Founding Chair, 2009

Tribute to Our Founding Chair

David Pecaut (1955-2009) was the driving force and founding chair of our organization. A senior partner of The Boston Consulting Group, he was an extraordinary civic entrepreneur and visionary. He had a powerful talent for convening people from widely varying perspectives and backgrounds and working with them to build consensus and collaborate to achieve bold city-building goals.

David created and led a 40-leader Steering Committee to take a more detailed look at the challenges facing our region, resulting in the 2003 report, Enough Talk: An Action Plan for the Toronto Region and leading to the creation of this unique and enduring civic leadership organization.

David taught us civic responsibility and engagement, showing time and again how much can be achieved when energetic and passionate people like him come together to create and pursue big ideas. Before his passing, he shared his inspiring vision of collective leadership and city-building to ensure the future success of the Toronto region. Read David’s love letter to Toronto.  To find out more about David, see our leadership spotlight on him here, and read Eleven Out of Ten: The Life and Work of David Pecaut – a memoir authored by Helen Burstyn.

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