2019 - Richard Steele

Richard is an experienced public service leader whose career has focused on the pursuit of innovation and excellence in the delivery of public services. Richard has a record of successfully building teams and partnerships to deliver practical results for both citizens and government. He is a passionate advocate and leader in client-centred service delivery. Legislative restrictions, jurisdictional boundaries and other integration challenges are never barriers to Richard’s vision for service delivery innovation and excellence.

Richard has been part of the senior executive team in the Government of Ontario for a number of years. Most recently, he was appointed as Associate Deputy Minister, ServiceOntario. Prior to this appointment, Richard served as Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) of the Social Assistance Operations Division at the Ministry of Children Community and Social Services. In this organization, Richard led one of the largest service delivery organizations in the Ontario Public Service with over 2,000 employees and managed a vast array of relationships with key delivery partners across all levels in the Government of Ontario. As ADM, Richard championed the design and delivery of a comprehensive service modernization strategy to improve access and the client service experience, including launching reloadable benefits payment cards, mobile services and digital mailroom and electronic document management. Richard also served as co-chair of the Provincial-Municipal Social Assistance Support and Employment Council representing 47 municipalities and co-chairing a table representing 102 first nations partners.

Prior to joining the Ministry of Children Community and Social Services, Richard served with ServiceOntario as the ADM Business Improvement and ADM Business Development. Richard led a number of key initiatives to transform large scale, highly complex processes and service delivery approaches to build and implement new and innovative, client-focused, accessible and cost effective service delivery models. Throughout his career, Richard has championed, led and delivered transformative strategies that have improved service and reduced costs to Ontarians.

Richard served as a PSSDC member and a member of the Institute for Citizen-Centred Service. He understood the value that the ICCS delivered by promoting and sharing experiences across jurisdictions. Richard was integral in facilitating the development of pan-Canadian perspectives that could enable and drive work to make service delivery simpler and more effective for all Canadians. He has also generously served on the Board of the Canadian National Institute for the Blind.

Richard’s extensive experience and dedication in promoting collaboration across all levels of government as well as within the Ontario public service makes him an ideal recipient of the Heintzman Leadership Award.

In recognition of his outstanding, innovative and transformational leadership in promoting citizen-centred approaches to service delivery, the Institute for Citizen-Centred Service is proud to award Richard Steele the 2019 Heintzman Leadership Award.