Goran Samuel Pesic is the Chair of the PIF Selection Committee and has over 30 years of experience in business, political, defence and security matters. He is President and CEO of the Samuel Group of Companies, which includes Samuel Associates, Inc. – a nonpartisan strategy, lobbying and marketing firm – and Samuel Technologies, Inc., a validation and verification of technology solutions, products and software company. Both organizations focus on helping companies in new and emerging high-tech industries position themselves for strategic growth and success in the Canadian marketplace.
Before founding the Samuel Group, Goran was a senior executive with the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC), a Government of Canada agency mandated to facilitate international trade on behalf of Canada’s defence, aerospace and infrastructure industries. As a corporate director, Goran was responsible for providing strategic business and political advice to the executive leadership on risk management and international business development opportunities for Canadian industries.
While at CCC, Goran was selected for a senior federal government executive exchange program to the Middle East with CAE Inc. As Director of Strategic Business Development and Government Relations for CAE Defence and Security, he was responsible for marketing and sales for Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Prior to CCC and CAE, Goran was a senior political advisor to Canada’s Minister of International Trade at Global Affairs Canada, where he provided strategic advice and recommendations to the Minister. Previous to his work at Global Affairs Canada, Goran was a political advisor to the federal Minister of Public Safety. He was responsible for Canada’s national security, cybersecurity and emergency management policy and Canada‐U.S. security and intelligence relations.
Before a career in politics, Goran was an executive director of two think‐tanks: the NATO Association of Canada and the Council on Transatlantic Relations. He established and maintained strategic partnerships with leading organizations such as NATO, OSCE, the E.U., the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the OECD, the World Bank and policy think‐tanks in Canada, the U.S. and abroad.
Goran is a U.S. National Security Fulbright Scholar from the University of California and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and History from the University of Toronto.