Neelam Sahota is a senior executive with over 20 years of progressive experience in spearheading financial management, strategic planning, risk and operations management within the private, public and not-for-profit sector. Taking a strategic approach to developing innovative business strategies to maximize collective impact has been the cornerstone of her career.
She has been appointed a Fellow of the Chartered Professional Accountants of British Columbia (FCPA, FCGA) and is also an alumna of Simon Fraser University from the Beedie School of Business. Neelam has in-depth experience in board governance having served in a number of capacities. She is currently an order-in-council appointed Board Governor of Simon Fraser University (Chair of the Finance and Administration Committee), Co-Chair of the Surrey Local Immigration Partnership, an Advisory Board Member of OMNI TV at Rogers Communications and for Solid State Industries. She has been the past Board Chair of Surrey Libraries and past Treasurer of the Immigrant Employment Council of BC. Neelam was awarded the provincial BC Libraries Trustees Association’s (BCLTA) Trustee of the Year in 2021 and is a past recipient of the Surrey Board of Trade’s Nonprofit Leader of the Year award. She is a past finalist of the YWCA Women of Distinction Awards (2020) as well as the Surrey Community Leader of the Year Award.
Her award-winning work in the social and economic development of Surrey, BC is based on creating community impact through resource connections, innovative economic drivers and values-based community partnerships. Neelam joined DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society as the Chief Executive Officer in 2013.
Neelam was born in Vancouver and raised in Burnaby. She now lives in Surrey and has been a resident of the city for the past 24 years. As a first generation Canadian, she has grown up with the challenges inherent with settlement for families. Witnessing first hand her own families struggles in her early years and those around her continues to provide the inspiration behind using her voice and platform to advocate and create systems change.