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Introducing Clare Barnett - Brampton’s New Director of Economic Development and Culture


The City of Brampton is on the verge of a deliberate and significant transformation. Brampton is becoming an economic hotspot that is rooted in its rich and diverse culture. Brampton’s time as a cultural and innovation leader is here and that time is Now! 

Clare Barnett has joined the city at an exciting time. As the new Director of Economic Development and Culture, Clare brings a global approach and focus. She is committed to building a business retention & expansion program, attracting foreign direct investment, growing entrepreneurship and igniting Brampton’s global brand.

“My focus is on building Brampton’s brand globally, to attract investment through a unique value proposition,” says Clare. “That brand is organically rooted in our talent. Brampton offers businesses a young, growing and diverse workforce. Brampton is the second fastest growing city in Canada, it has the youngest population in the country, with 234 different cultures, speaking 115 languages.

Brampton has also prioritized entrepreneurship. With a new incubator and co-working space, Clare is committed to continuing to support the growth of local entrepreneurs. “Equally important is building a business retention and expansion plan to grow the businesses operating in Brampton. These two initiatives are not mutually exclusive. Our approach to both are guided by our mandate of inviting the world to invest and prosper in Brampton,” Clare explains.

Arts and culture are essential to the vibrancy and success of any city and are a vital part of Clare’s portfolio. They create jobs, drive economies, and generate a strong cultural ecosystem that helps shape the Brampton community. Developing concentrations of creative industries and entrepreneurs provides a competitive edge for Brampton by elevating the community's quality of life and improving the ability to attract businesses and economic activity.

Clare brings a mix of private and public sector experience, having worked in all sizes of businesses and with the Ontario government in FDI attraction and economic development. Mostly recently, Clare specialized in leading policy development and cutting red tape as the Director, Regulatory Centre of Excellence. She served as Ontario’s representative in the UK, furthering the province’s economic interests. In addition, as Vice President, Investment Growth, she established the Ontario Investment Office, providing investors with a business concierge service and establishing Ontario’s international brand and digital marketing campaign.

Clare’s leadership strengths, along with her passion for collaboration and leading complex initiatives, will add great value to Brampton’s economic development efforts. She has already engaged critical business partners like the Brampton Board of Trade and the Rogers Cybersecure Catalyst. She sees partners as having an instrumental role in Brampton’s economic success. 

“I’m looking forward to working with Council to retain and expand local businesses and further Brampton’s position as a prime investment location for foreign businesses,” says Clare.