Governance Structure

The Commissioner of Lobbying is an independent Agent of Parliament, appointed by Parliament under the Lobbying Act (the Act) for a term of seven years. The Commissioner reports annually to both Houses of Parliament. Reports on Investigation conducted in relation to the Lobbyists' Code of Conduct are tabled in Parliament when completed.

An Audit and Evaluation Committee provides objective advice and recommendations to the Commissioner. The committee is comprised of three external members and the Commissioner.

The Office of the Commissioner of Lobbying consists of 28 full-time employees and is divided into four groups.

  • Karen E. Shepherd
    Commissioner of Lobbying
    • Deputy Commissioner
    • Director of Registration
      and Client Services
    • Director of
  • The Office of the Commissioner is comprised of Commissioner Shepherd, Legal Counsel, a Senior Advisor and an Executive Assistant. The Commissioner has the rank and powers of a deputy head of a federal department. This group provides legal advice and opinions to the Office, as well as financial oversight to fulfill all statutory requirements and to uphold central agency policies.
  • The Office of the Deputy Commissioner is led by René Leblanc, Deputy Commissioner. This section is responsible for integrated strategic and operational planning, including the coordination and implementation of performance measurement, risk management, and human resources management. This group also provides strategic policy and communications advice, and coordinates all outreach activities. Financial and administrative services for the organization are handled by this unit, which also works to address all corporate needs relating to security, facilities management and workplace safety.
  • The Registration and Client Services Directorate is responsible for developing and maintaining the Lobbyists Registration System (LRS) and the online Registry of Lobbyists. The LRS allows lobbyists to register their lobbying activities and perform transactions, such as amendments, renewals and terminations. The Registry allows Canadians to search for lobbyists and lobbying activity. Employees of the Registration and Client Services Directorate process lobbyists' registrations and offer client service to registrants, public office holders, and the general public.
  • The Investigations Directorate is responsible for ensuring compliance with the Lobbying Act and the Lobbyists' Code of Conduct. Employees in this directorate monitor lobbying activity, verify information submitted to the Lobbyists Registration System, review and investigate allegations of non-compliance, and review applications for exemptions to the five-year prohibition on lobbying for former designated public office holders.