FREDERICTON (GNB) – Private-sector entrepreneur David Alston has been appointed as the province’s new chief entrepreneur in residence. This announcement is in line with the Economic Growth Plan's "innovation" pillar.

“Making government more innovative and efficient is essential to advancing New Brunswickers’ priorities of economic growth, education and health care,” said Premier Brian Gallant, who is also minister responsible for innovation. “By appointing David as chief entrepreneur in residence, we are harnessing his experience and know-how to foster innovation, inside and outside of government.”

The new, unpaid, volunteer position within the Executive Council Office is designed to provide mentorship and leadership to drive innovative practices across government departments, resulting in greater efficiency and economic growth.

Alston will work with government to promote the use of digital, social and innovation labs as a way to:

  • solve social issues;

  • drive economic development;

  • provide residents with improved access to services and their data;

  • reduce cost of service delivery; and

  • improve interdepartmental and community collaboration.

“New Brunswick has a history of entrepreneurship and innovation,” said Economic Development Minister Francine Landry. “David brings an incredible amount of knowledge and experience that will help us continue to establish the kind of environment that will foster economic development.”

In his new role, Alston will develop an Entrepreneur in Residence Program, which will invite entrepreneurs and innovators to work with government departments or focus on specific matters within government. He will also be involved in developing an internship program that will support interns through an entrepreneurial approach.

"I hope to do my part in encouraging and inspiring more of our province's problem-solvers, both young and old, as well within government and within our citizenship, to not only actively participate in imagining the 'what' of what is possible in New Brunswick, but also around the ‘how’ of how we can creatively achieve it," said Alston.

Biography: David Alston

David Alston has volunteered as an innovator and entrepreneur with several initiatives, and has advised hundreds of start-ups in the Atlantic region and around the world. He has been a volunteer advisor for the provincial government’s Strategic Program Review and 10-year education plans. Alston was named Industry Champion at the 2015 KIRA Awards, and a Forbes top 50 CMO on social media. He was co-winner of a 2014 EY Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Atlantic Canada, a 2015 winner of Entrepreneur of the Year, and co-winner of Enterprise Promotion for the Atlantic Region from Startup Canada. Alston has sat on the boards of the United Way of Greater Saint John, Living SJ, and Brilliant Labs. He is a former CMO of Radian6 and former marketing cloud chief adoption officer for