Assistant Deputy Minister, Strategic Policy and Commemoration

Steven Harris

As the Assistant Deputy Minister for Strategic Policy and Commemoration, I am proud to lead the branch of Veterans Affairs Canada that develops policy through extensive evidenced-based research that supports the overall well-being of Veterans and their families, and leads commemorative and recognition activities to promote the achievements and sacrifices of those who served in times of war and peace.

In partnership with Veterans, other federal government departments, stakeholder organizations, and with provinces and communities across the country, the Strategic Policy and Commemoration branch is focused on ensuring that policies and programs reflect the needs of the Veteran community and support successful outcomes in all areas of well-being, including employment or other meaningful activity, housing and physical environment, finances and social integration. Through commemoration, we promote and encourage everyone to honour the one and a half million brave Canadians who served, and continue to serve, our country at home and abroad.

Throughout my career I have seen the benefits of partnership and engagement, of continuous improvement through asking questions, and the value of understanding how all of the pieces fit together. I have worked in multiple departments such as Treasury Board Secretariat, Social Development Canada, and Canadian Heritage in addition to almost ten years with Veterans Affairs Canada. My experience has included policy, communications, parliamentary and cabinet affairs, procurement and security, and service delivery. All of these roles have combined to shape my perspective and approach, and in each position I been fortunate to have worked with dedicated, smart professionals who always want to make things better for those we serve. This is the same approach we will take in our branch. We will achieve our goals by working together with our partners and stakeholders, focusing on evidence and clear outcomes, and preparing for future needs.

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