Friends —


With great excitement and immense pride, the Board and staff of the Institute for Change Leaders are thrilled to announce a change in our own leadership, as Olivia Chow becomes the Mayor of Toronto.

Olivia founded ICL in 2016 and since then, with her extraordinary leadership, we have trained more than 10,000 people, helping them to tell their stories of self, and develop the skills they need to transform the resources they have into the change they want.

As Olivia wrote in her message in our 2022 Annual Report: “The strength of the ICL community and each inspiring story and storyteller is a source of hope, when so many in our world feel helpless and hopeless. A source of hope, a source of action. A source of change.”


Olivia Chow, Founder of ICL and Mayor-elect of Toronto

Photo Credit: Mitchel Raphael


And now Olivia has given us hope for a better, more caring city with her own inspiring story. As she said on election night, we can know that anything is possible when we work together and when “an immigrant kid from St. James Town can be standing in front of you as your new Mayor.”

Olivia will now begin the journey of change for the city she knows and loves to call home, Toronto. And we will begin the next stage of ICL’s journey.

We are pleased to announce that the Board has appointed Amrit Parhar as Acting Executive Director. Amrit has been a key part of ICL’s success and growth as the Education and Training Manager; and has been at the helm since Olivia began her quest in April. She has the passion, commitment and experience to help lead ICL forward at this time of challenge and change, with the help and support of our dedicated staff and the entire ICL community. 


Amrit Parhar, ICL’s Acting Executive Director


We know that ICL will be a significant part of the stories of change unfolding in our city under Olivia’s leadership. At ICL, we will also inspire others to start their path through Olivia's story. 

Olivia’s legacy is extraordinary, and we look forward to building on it.


Yours sincerely,


amanuel (aman) melles

Chair, Board of Directors

The Institute for Change Leaders

— CBC published an article highlighting ICL's strength in teaching relational organizing. This grassroots approach helped elect Olivia Chow as Mayor of Toronto. ICL's People, Power, Change course adapts Marshall Ganz's course taught initially at Harvard University.


How the Organizing Method of Harvard’s Marshall Ganz helped elect Olivia Chow as Mayor of Toronto

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The Institute for Change Leaders is a Canadian registered charity that can issue official donation receipts (no. 763310679 RR 0001). ICL is brought to you by the Faculty of Community Services at Toronto Metropolitan University.

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