The Council of Ontario Universities (COU) provides a forum for Ontario’s universities to collaborate and advocate in support of their shared mission to the benefit and prosperity of students, communities and the province of Ontario.


President’s Bio


Steve Orsini - President and CEOAs President and CEO of the Council of Ontario Universities (COU), Steve Orsini brings a wealth of experience and leadership to his role in supporting Ontario’s universities as the sector advances student success, drives community development and bolsters economic prosperity for the province.  

Prior to his role at COUSteve was Secretary of the Cabinet, Head of the Ontario Public Service (OPS) and Clerk of the Executive Council. In this role, he championed the development of the OPS of the Future Action Plan, its Inclusion and Diversity Blueprint and the government’s first Anti-Racism Action Plan. 

With more than 30 years of experience in the Ontario Public Service, Steve has also held numerous leadership roles, including Deputy Minister of Finance and Secretary of the Treasury Board, and Deputy Minister of Revenue. He has also held a number of positions at the Ontario Hospital Association, including Vice President of Policy and Public Affairs. 

Steve continues to work collaboratively with all levels of government, the broader public sector, NGOs and industry associations. He is a member of the Intergovernmental Fiscal Relations Commission, recommending reforms to Canada’s fiscal architecture; aSenior Fellowat the C.D. Howe Institute; and anAdjunct Professorin the School of Public Policy and Administration at Carleton University.  

Steve is also a former Board Member of the Public Policy Forum and Distinguished Fellow of the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy at the University of TorontoHe holds a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Urban and Regional Planning, as well as a Master’s in Environmental Studies.