Michael Blackburn (He/Him)
Manager, Election Communications & Community Engagement, City of Markham
Michael is a dynamic, innovative and Gold Quill award-winning communication professional and 2SLGBTQ+ advocate who is passionate about inclusivity, diversity, equity and accessibility. He is the proud recipient of IABC International’s 2021 Rising Leader of the Year Award for his outstanding contributions to the industry and delivering the Global Standard of the Communications Profession.
From 9 to 5, Michael works as the Manager of Election Communications & Community Engagement for Elections Markham. He has more than eleven years of experience in special events and public service, leading large-scale, innovative and high-impact initiatives that connect communities and have a real impact on people’s lives.
As an avid volunteer and community builder, every summer Michael cycles in the Friends for Life Bike Rally – a six-day charity bike ride from Toronto to Montreal to raise funds for the Toronto People with AIDS Foundation and its lifesaving services. He is also the Past President for Pflag York Region, a 2SLGBTQ+ support, resource and education network.
He has proudly served as IABC/Toronto’s Executive Vice President (2021-2022), Vice President of OVATION Awards (2020-2021) and as a member of the 2022 IABC World Conference Program Advisory Committee.