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Ryerson Works: Services that put people first
Administration and Operations Management Group

Deborah Brown

Deborah Brown
Vice-President, Administration and Operations

I am delighted to be joining a university that is so well-known for being a city builder, an innovator, and strong partner with governments, businesses and community organizations. As a Ryerson graduate from the School of Journalism, I am excited by this opportunity to work with students, faculty and staff to contribute to Ryerson’s continued and future success.

In my position of Vice-President, Administration and Operations I work with a team of leaders, responsible for seven units that focus on people, infrastructure, and community safety and security ensuring that students, faculty and staff can call Ryerson a vibrant place to learn and work.  Uniting all the many things we do is a commitment to supporting Ryerson’s priorities and the fulfilment of its ambitious Academic Plan.

I’m excited to be returning to Ryerson in this role and look forward to working with the students, staff and faculty in the months and years to come.

Deborah Brown joined Ryerson University January 29, 2018, as the Vice President, Administration and Operations. Deborah is a Ryerson alumnus.  She is proud to hold a degree in journalism from Ryerson and to work at the university that provided her education.

Deborah came to Ryerson from Mohawk College, where she was the Vice President of Corporate Services from 2014 until January 2018. Deborah led the corporate services team, which was responsible for capital projects, finance, human resources, information technology, internal audit, corporate governance, legal services, campus safety, business and ancillary services.

While at Mohawk, Deborah was the executive lead for the region’s first new zero building, the Joyce Centre for Partnership & Innovation.  The building, which is designated as a national pilot project to demonstrate a new net zero carbon building standard, won the Green Building Council’s Innovation in Sustainability Award for 2017. Deborah’s team at Mohawk won 16 local, regional and national sustainability awards, including the 2017 Canada’s Greenest Employer, the Greenbelt Fund’s 2017 Local Food Champion, and the 2016 Metrolinx Smart Commute Workplace. A new Centre for Climate Change Management was also developed by Deborah’s team, further marking its community leadership and partnerships in sustainability.

Deborah spearheaded many “firsts” at Mohawk, including its Internal Audit and Risk Management Framework, the design and implementation of its Emergency Operations Centre and Emergency Management Plan, and the creation of a Community Plaza.

Prior to her role at Mohawk, Deborah worked in leadership positions within the Ontario government for 15 years.  She was most recently the Acting Chief Administrative Officer and Assistant Deputy Minister at Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS). In that role, she was responsible for business planning and reporting, controllership and financial management, and human resources.

Previous to that role, she was the Director of the Strategic Business Unit where she was responsible for the provision of strategic human resource advice to TBS' executive group, and led the development and launch of both the Human Capital Plan and the Leadership Enrichment and Advancement Program. Prior to that, Deborah served as the Director, Operations for the Deputy Minister's Office in the Ministry of Government Services; Director of the Tourism Agencies Branch at the Ministry of Tourism; and as the director responsible for consumer policy and agency governance with the Ministry of Consumer Services.

Deborah serves on the board of directors for the YWCA of Hamilton and is chair of its Governance and Diversity Committee. She is also a Special Advisor to CivicAction’s Escalator: Jobs for Youth Facing Barriers. Previously, she served as a provincial government appointee to the Boards of Directors of Tarion Warranty Corporation, the Travel Industry Council of Ontario and the Canadian Motor Vehicle Arbitration Plan.

Along with her journalism degree, Deborah holds a corporate governance designation from the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management/Institute for Corporate Directors. She is also a graduate of the Western University’s Ivey School of Business Executive Leadership Program and the University of Windsor’s Executive Certificate Program in Conflict Management.


The Administration and Operations Management Group (AOMG) consists of leaders of seven non-academic units (Administration and Operations Communications, Community Safety and Security, Computing and Communications Services, Facilities Management and Development, Human Resources, Internal Audit, and University Business Services) that work in partnership with colleagues across the university.  The group focuses on people, infrastructure and safety and security ensuring that students, faculty and staff can call Ryerson a vibrant place to learn and work.

The activities of the units of the AOMG range from complex undertakings such as building the new Daphne Cockwell Health Sciences Complex, providing healthy, delicious and sustainable food in the cafeterias and student residences, to everyday operations that include ensuring WIFI is up to speed, classrooms are turned over for the next group of students and the campus feels safe and welcoming.

The objective of the AOMG is to help every Ryersonian feel valued and empowered to do their work - whether it is to excel as a student, shine as top-notch researcher or win accolades as a staff member.