Ms. Neelam Sahota,
Order-in-Council

Neelam Sahota is the Chief Executive Officer of DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society, a values-based registered charity that serves newcomers and underrepresented communities with equitable access to resources while reducing systemic barriers to participation. Neelam brings senior executive experience to her role that has spanned over 20 years in the corporate, provincial government and non-profit sectors. Taking a disciplined approach to developing effective business strategies to maximize community impact has been the cornerstone of her career.

Neelam is a Fellow of the Chartered Professional Accountants of British Columbia (FCPA, FCGA) where she has also completed her Certificate in Executive Leadership. She is an alumna of Simon Fraser University (SFU) with a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree. Neelam has in-depth experience in board governance, risk assessment and strategic planning and is an active community member. She is currently a SFU Board Governor, the Board Chair of Surrey Libraries, Co-Chair of the Surrey Local Immigration Partnership, Board Director and past Treasurer of the Immigrant Employment Council of British Columbia as well as an Advisory Board Member of Rogers Communications OMNI TV and Solid State Community Industries.

Neelam’s involvement in the social and economic development of communities is driven by a passion for creating collective impact through innovative economic business models such as social enterprises and cooperatives, reducing systemic barriers to participation for underserved individuals and values-based community partnerships. Neelam has been recognized widely for her leadership and community advocacy. She is a 2020 YWCA Women of Distinction nominee in the non-profit category, a recipient of the 2020 Drishti Award in Excellence in Community Engagement and the 2020 Shakti Award for Leadership Excellence. Neelam is also a past recipient of the Surrey Board of Trade Women in Business Nonprofit Leader of the Year Award.

Neelam was born in Vancouver and raised in Burnaby. She now lives in Surrey and has been a resident of the city for the past 23 years, where she and her husband are raising their three children and enjoying the parks and trails in their neighbourhood with their energetic chocolate Labrador puppy.

In the place where innovative education, cutting-edge research and community outreach intersect, you'll find Simon Fraser University. Our vision? To be Canada's leading engaged university.

Born in 1965, SFU has become Canada's leading comprehensive university with vibrant campuses in British Columbia's largest municipalities — VancouverBurnaby and Surrey — and deep roots in partner communities throughout the province and around the world.