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Sep 8th, 2021

News Release: Shaun Simms, OCHC Vice-President, People, Culture and Communications Honoured Among Housing Sector Leaders From Around The World

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OTTAWA, ON) September 7, 2021 – Ottawa Community Housing Corporation is extremely honoured to announce that Shaun Simms, OCHC’s Vice-President of People, Culture and Communications, has been highly commended for the Lifetime Achievement Award (Housing category) with the Chartered Institute of Housing Heroes Awards, based in Manchester, England. 

The Housing Heroes awards are aimed at celebrating the leaders, innovators and changemakers of the housing sector.  

OCHC’s Shaun Simms began her career in the housing sector in 1991, and over the last 30 years, she has worked in a wide breadth of roles including maintenance, intake, tenancy administration, and human resources. 

This year’s Lifetime Achievement Award category included eight finalists, with OCHC’s Shaun Simms being the only nominee based in North America. Simms’ devotion to the housing sector is an incredible accomplishment, and now, it’s one that’s celebrated around the world.  

Under Shaun’s leadership, OCHC has embarked on a journey to improve the employee culture through a multi-year culture roadmap – one that encourages collaboration, accountability, respect and continuous improvement. It also focuses on delivering quality services to every tenant, every home. 

As part of that continued work, we are currently refreshing the culture roadmap. That work is being done through culture chats to gather employee feedback and input. In addition to that work, we are improving the organizational foundation in key areas: 

  • Diversity and Inclusion – Developing a workforce that represents the diverse communities we serve and promoting online training programs for employees.  
  • Mental Health and Well Being – Creating a healthy workplace by establishing a wellness committee and offering an annual wellness benefit and a comprehensive benefits program.  
  • Remote Work – Supporting employees by sharing important updates, ensuring distribution of equipment and offering continued access to virtual health care services during the COVID-19 pandemic.  
  • Sustainability – Developing and updating affordable housing in a way that protects the environment by ensuring that all new requests for proposals include elements of sustainable design practices. 


 “Shaun Simms is a transformative leader that has a unique perspective on the needs of tenants, that stems from working in many different areas – from maintenance to intake. Shaun is passionate about making our organization better by focusing on continuous improvement to better serve tenants. She is truly making a difference each and every day.” 

– Stéphane Giguère, Chief Executive Officer, OCHC 

“I am so honoured to have been highly commended for the Lifetime Achievement Award among housing sector leaders from around the world. Based on my experience in a variety of roles over the last 30 years, I believe as leaders we have a duty to support tenants and help build better communities together.”   

– Shaun Simms, Vice-President, People and Culture OCHC 

 About OCHC Ottawa Community Housing Corporation (OCHC) provides approximately 15,000 homes to about 32,000 tenants, including seniors, parents, children, couples, singles and persons with special needs, within many communities across the City of Ottawa. OCHC houses has diverse population of varying languages, ethnicity and cultures. OCHC is the largest social housing provider in Ottawa, managing two-thirds of the City’s social housing portfolio, and is the second largest in Ontario. OCHC was selected as one of the National Capital Region’s Top Employers in 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021.  | Twitter  | LinkedIn  | Facebook  | Instagram

  Media Contact
Jennifer McIntosh