Each person was assessed in three ways: how much institutional power do they hold, how innovative are they, and how much is happening right now, or soon, that puts their power in play?

Here is the complete list of the top 50 most powerful Canadians from Maclean's Power Issue:


  1. Stephen Harper-Prime Minister of Canada - controls the fates of many other figures in Ottawa. Shuffled his cabinet, ending the ministerial careers of Vic Toews, Ted Menzies, Diane Ablonczy, and Peter Kent.  Clinched trade deal with Europe.  Biggest asset: strong economy.
  2. Naheed Nenshi-Mayor of Calgary - Is loved as mayor of Calgary and is keen on making City Hall much more powerful.  Calgary is close to a deal with the province on a city charter that would devolved more responsibilities explicitly onto the municipal governments along with a slice of tax revenue. May be the most popular individual politician in Canada right now.
  3. Jerry Dias-President of Unifor, the mega-union created this year by the merger of the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers.  He is expected to halt, or even reverse the decline in big labour's clout.  Leads an impressive , -plus membership across two dozen economic sectors.
  4. Mark Wiseman-President and CEO of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.  He presides over a $ billion portfolio that amounts to the national nest egg:  18 million Canadians need him not to screw up. At just -years-old, he stands to be a major figure in Canadians business for decades to come.
  5. France Charbonneau-Superior Court judge - headed proceedings into corruption in Quebec's construction industry. The Charbonneau Commission, and Charbonneau herself, has come to represent Quebec's collective disgust with corrupt elements within it.  Expected to table her report in .  She has everyone from mobsters to politicians worried.
  6. Ray Novak-Stephen Harper's Chief of Staff.  Carries a reputation as a discreet and loyal operator who gets things done.  Other than Laureen, nobody knows the Prime Minister better.  Famously lived in the loft above the garage at Stornoway when Harper was leader of the opposition.
  7. Galen Weston Jr.-Chairman of Loblaw Companies Limited. With his $12.4 billion bid for Shoppers Drug Mart, he served notice he wouldn't be a stand-pat heir and TV shill.  If the deal goes through, it gives Canada a homegrown rival to the likes of Target Corp and Wal-Mart.  
  8. Justin Trudeau-Leader of the Liberal Party.  He's keeping his party near the top of the opinion polls.  His ability to dictate the public debate, as he did over the summer talking about marijuana, is currently unrivalled.  He faces a steep learning curve on the floor of the Commons.
  9. Julie Dickson-Current Superintendent of the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions. She has emerged as a star among international advocates of tougher banking regulation in the wake of the  global credit meltdown.  She wields power over Canadian mortgage markets and bank capital requirements, and her voice is hear far beyond Canada's borders.
  10. Mike Lazaridis-founder of BlackBerry and co-founder of Quantum Valley Investments, which will only invest in businesses that want to exploit quantum technology.  Only one other like it in the world. Quantum technology is not just a new way of making computers, it's a vast new field of technologies that never existed before.
  11. Gerald Butts-Justin Trudeau's top advisor
  12. Beverley McLachlin-longest-serving chief justice of the Supreme Court of Canada
  13. Thomas Mulcair-Leader of the official Opposition
  14. James Moore-Minister of Industry
  15. Christy Clark-B.C. Premier
  16. Pierre Karl Peladeau-largest shareholder of Quebecor, even though he stepped down as CEO in May
  17. Laureen Harper-First Lady of Canada
  18. Jason Kenney-Citizenship and Immigration Minister
  19. Alex Pourbaix-President of energy and oil pipelines for TransCanada Corp.
  20. Jenni Byrne-Deputy Chief of Staff to Prime Minister Harper
  21. Marc Caira-Tim Hortons CEO
  22. Steve Yzerman-former captain of the Detroit Red Wings, now the executive director of the Canadian men's Olympic hockey team.
  23. Heather Conway-Executive vice-president of English-language services of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
  24. Anne Merklinger-Head of Own the Podium
  25. Andrew McCartney-Managing director at Tribal DDB Toronto.  He is one of the marketing minds behind the McDonald's advertising campaign "Our Food. Your questions."
  26. Suzanne Fortier-New president of McGill University
  27. Jim Flaherty-Finance Minister
  28. Pierre Poilievre-Minister of State
  29. Alison Redfor-Alberta Premier
  30. Jean-Francois Lisee-Separatist politician in Quebec … planted the idea of stopping public servants from wearing obvious religious symbols
  31. Preston Manning-Manning Centre for Building Democracy/Elder Statesman
  32. Stephen Poloz-new Bank of Canada governor
  33. Michael Ferguson-Auditor General of Canada
  34. Jean-Pierre Blais-Chairman of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.
  35. Joe Oliver-Natural Resources Minister
  36. Tom Jenkins-Executive Chairman and chief strategy officer of Open Text, Canada's biggest software company.
  37. Tom Lawson-Chief of Defence Staff.
  38. Marc Ouellet-Quebec Cardinal and prefect of the Congregation for Bishops.  Almost became Pope in March.
  39. Shawn Atleo-National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations
  40. Gary Keller-John Baird's Chief of Staff.
  41. Jennifer Keesmat-Toronto's city planner.
  42. Jian Ghomeshi-Host of CBC's radio variety show "Q"
  43. Drake-rapper and multi-platinum recording artist
  44. Carolle Brabant-executive director of Telefilm Canada
  45. Nancy Southern-CEO of Canadian Utilities and ATCO … arguably the most powerful woman in Canadian business.
  46. Bob Gomes-CEO and President of Stantec Inc.
  47. Olivia Chow-Toronto MP for the NDP
  48. Gerry McCaughey- Chief Executive of CIBC
  49. Murray Edwards-Chair of Canadian Natural Resources
  50. Stephen Bronfman-Executive Chairman of Claridge Inc, the Montreal private equity firm and is also heading Justin Trudeau's fundraising efforts.


  • Jean-Denis Frechette-Old parliamentary budget officer. Nice and co-operative, so everyone ignores him.
  • Nigel Wright-Harper's former chief of staff.  Caught up in senate scandal.
  • Marjory LeBreton-Was government leader in the senate for seven years.
  • Claude Carignan-Replaced LeBreton as government leader in the senate.  Has no cabinet rank, unlike all of his predecessors.
  • Lorne Bozinoff-Runs Forum Research, the country's busiest pollster.  Doesn't understand quality over quantity and has become Ottawa's favourite punchline.