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Navigating Uncertainty; Targeting Sustainability
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Bonnie Schmidt

President - Let’s Talk Science, Ontario (national office)

Dr. Bonnie Schmidt is the founder and president of Let’s Talk Science, a national education charity that she started in 1991 while completing a PhD in Physiology. Let’s Talk Science helps children and youth fulfill their potential and prepare for their future careers and citizenship role by supporting their learning through science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) engagement. The organization offers a robust suite of programming for youth, educators and volunteers, engaging over 11 million people since its inception. 

Interested in supporting systems change, Bonnie spearheaded Canada 2067, a unique consultation during 2017-18 to shape the future of STEM education. In 2020 she was a member of the PISA Expert Strategic Visioning Group to the OECD, which set about developing a new vision for the international science test for students. 

An active contributor to the scientific and education communities, Bonnie currently serves on the Genome Canada Board of Directors. She is also a member of the Federal Government’s AI Public Awareness Working Group . She is also on committees of the Royal Society of Canada, the Inter-American Network of Academies of Science, and the CSPC.

Prior volunteer contributions include Chairing the National Leadership Taskforce on Education & Skills for the Information and Communications Technology Council (ICTC); MItacs Science Policy Fellowship Committee; Ontario Tech University Board of Governors; Ontario Genomics Board of Directors; Founding Co-Chair of the Science and Technology Awareness Network (STAN) and more. Committed to good governance, she completed the ICD Directors Education Program in 2019.

For her efforts in education and youth development, Dr. Schmidt has received more than a dozen awards, including an Honorary Degree from Ryerson University. She was named a Member of the Order of Canada in 2015 and a Special Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2018. 

Bonnie has spent 30 years in the STEM education and outreach ecosystem and has experience developing youth and public awareness programming, including supporting knowledge mobilization activities with STEM researchers and policy makers.