Mike S. Zafirovski, President & CEO, Nortel, joins growing list of Canadian Community Leaders calling for technology agenda for prosperity
April 10, 2007



Our high tech community leaders are committed to keeping Canada at the forefront of job creation, exports and innovation.

From Left to Right: Micheál Kelly, Dean, University of Ottawa, School of Management John Reid, President, CATAAlliance, and Mike S. Zafirovski, President & CEO, Nortel, who has endorsed the call for Innovation Nation, a technology agenda for the nation's prosperity.

"Setting the Gold Standard" - Technology and Educational Agenda for Growth

Ottawa, April 10, 2007... CATAAlliance announced that Mike S. Zafirovski, President & CEO of Nortel, a leading international business, and highly respected community leader, has endorsed the call for the adoption of the CATAAlliance Innovation Nation Platform, as a compelling model to improve Canada's competitiveness and prosperity.

Mr. Zafirovski joins a growing list of business leaders, including Terry Matthews, Chair of March Networks, Lionel Hurtubise, past CEO and Chair, Ericsson Canada Inc., Dennis Melnbardis, Lead Partner, Communications & High Tech, Canadian Practice, Accenture and Micheál J. Kelly, Dean of the School of Management, University of Ottawa and the Hon. John Manley, former Deputy Prime Minister of Canada to call for the adoption of the Innovation Nation Platform.

"The award of national prosperity will go to those countries that can generate international confidence in their ability to lead in the design, development, production and distribution of goods and services," says Mr. Zafirovski, "These countries will attract and retain investment and talent. For nations to prosper they must become leading innovation nations; we all need to do our part to get there. Canada and the U.S. are natural business partners in the quest to respond to global competitive challenges and achieve gold performance standards."

Mike S. Zafirovski

Mike Zafirovski is President and Chief Executive Officer at Nortel, a global leader in innovative communications and services that are enabling the transformation of businesses around the world.

Since joining Nortel in November, 2005, Zafirovski has drawn on his depth of global business expertise to drive sustainable business improvements that build on the company's innovative strength in new technologies that are bringing unprecedented levels of personalization, security and mobility to communications.

Zafirovski, 52, is a 30-year business veteran with impressive global experience at two of the world's highest profile corporate innovators - General Electric and Motorola.

Prior to his current role at Nortel, he was president and chief operating officer of Motorola, Inc. from July 2002 to February 2005 where he was a key player leading the company's re-emergence in innovation, market share gains and significant profitability improvements by all six businesses. Zafirovski joined Motorola in June 2000 to lead its mobile devices business, which during his tenure returned to profitability and increased market share through the introduction of exciting new products and the Moto branding campaign.

Before his leadership positions at Motorola, Zafirovski spent 25 years at General Electric (GE), including 13 years as president and chief executive officer of five businesses in the industrial, financial services and insurance businesses. Prior to that, he held a number of increasingly senior positions in finance, auditing, marketing and strategy/business development at various GE businesses.

Zafirovski holds a B.A. in mathematics from Edinboro University in Pennsylvania where he also captained the intercollegiate soccer and swimming teams. In 2002, Edinboro University awarded Zafirovski with an honorary doctorate degree. A native of Macedonia, he received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor in 2004.

Zafirovski serves on the board of directors of Boeing. An active member of civic and business communities, Zafirovski serves on several professional, educational and non-profit business organizations, including The Canadian Council of Chief Executives, The Economic Club of Chicago and the Macedonian Arts Council. He and his wife Robin are the national chairs for Duke University's Parents' Committee.

Innovation Nation Core Planks

Among the core planks in Innovation Nation are developing a national brand for Canada based on regional advantages, creating an industrial strategy based on strategic approaches to government procurement and global supply chains, adopting best innovation tax credit (SR&ED) practices, removing trade barriers as part of responding to the flat world and attracting and training and retaining the best talent.

CATA is also looking for measures that would advance executive leadership and promote the adoption of high technology tools in government and the private sector.

John Reid, CATAAlliance President, concluded, "We are living through an economic revolution created by technology, global interdependence and increasingly open markets" adding, "Canada is already a leader in many business sectors. But to maintain and grow this leadership, we have to expand our markets and be the best in the world. We are calling on all Canadians to work with us to create the necessary entrepreneurship, innovation, risk taking, and public policies for the Innovation Nation."

++ Action item
Executives interested in assisting CATA with its Innovation Nation Campaign and or who have recommendations to add should contact CATA President John Reid at johnreid@attglobal.net or call 613-236-6550.

Please circulate the communiqué internally and also send to your business, media and community network of contacts as part of mobilization behind the Campaign.