Executive Team

The HFR executive team brings a wealth of global experience in project management, rail engineering, public affairs, Indigenous relations, and stakeholder communications. Their knowledge and experience will enable us to turn this project into reality.

Headshot of Martin Imbleau

Chief Executive Officer


Martin Imbleau brings exceptional leadership skills to VIA HFR – VIA TGF Inc., and has considerable expertise in delivering large, complex greenfield infrastructure projects. His robust experience with various stakeholders, Indigenous communities, domestic and international partners, business people, governments at all levels, and a wide spectrum of experts is invaluable to the High Frequency Rail project.

Prior to joining VIA HFR – VIA TGF Inc., Mr. Imbleau was President and Chief Executive Officer of the Montreal Port Authority, where he advanced the port’s public service status as a major economic engine and a recognized leader in environmental and sustainable development.

Previously at Hydro-Québec, he led as a Vice-President the corporate strategy and development in Quebec, neighboring provinces and in the USA including the development of major energy transportation infrastructure projects. Earlier he served Énergir, formerly known as Gaz Métro, a leading energy provider in Quebec and in the USA. Mr. Imbleau’s vice-presidential roles spanned business development, renewable energy, community relations, corporate strategy, safety, operations, major projects, gas supply and transportation.

Martin Imbleau holds a master’s in law from Université de Montréal and a bachelor’s in law from the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM). He was called to the Barreau du Québec in 1997. While working in developing major infrastructure, Mr. Imbleau pursued his international human rights involvement as an author of numerous works on international human rights law, genocide, and transitional justice.

Mr. Imbleau chairs the Board of Directors of the Raoul-Dandurand Chair in Strategic and Diplomatic Studies at UQAM. He co-founded the Chair in Energy Sector Management at HEC Montréal, the business school attached to the Université de Montréal.

Headshot of Marc-Olivier Ranger

Corporate Secretary

Why I chose to work on this project?

I am passionate about public service, transportation and infrastructure. I find all these aspects in the High Frequency Rail project. This project will change forever the way we travel in Canada by putting passengers first. It is a privilege to be able to contribute to the evolution of this project.


Marc-Olivier Ranger has been making his mark in public service at the federal government level for many years. This career senior public servant has an unparalleled network and knowledge that will benefit all Canadians in the realization of the High Frequency Rail project.

He has held senior director positions at Public Services and Procurement Canada, the Treasury Board Secretariat and Transport Canada.

Prior to joining VIA HFR, Marc-Olivier was responsible for supervising all construction works in connection with the rehabilitation of the Parliament of Canada’s Centre Block. During the pandemic, Marc-Olivier kept one of the largest construction sites in Canada safe and operational, supporting the local economy and hundreds of jobs in downtown Ottawa.
He also helped establish two federal Crown corporations, the Canada Infrastructure Bank and the Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority, which are wholly owned by the Crown (Government of Canada) and structured as private companies that operate independently of government.

Marc-Olivier also supported the design and implementation of the Government of Canada's Invest in Canada Long-Term Plan, launched in 2016, which committed more than $180 billion over 12 years to infrastructure that benefits Canadians - from public transit to commercial ports, from broadband networks to energy systems, from community services to natural spaces.

Headshot of Tom Roberts

Chief Financial Officer

Why I chose to work on this project?

I am impressed by the challenge and opportunities that VIA HFR offers. It's not often that you get the chance to participate in such an important and impactful project for our country. It is truly an honour to help found this new organization and make it a model that everyone will be proud of. Sharing my daily work life with committed and motivated colleagues to the benefit of Canadians, stakeholders and Indigenous communities, I know will lead to success!


With nearly fifteen years of experience in senior positions in federal departments and central agencies, Tom Roberts has played a leadership role on many high-profile and complex files. His knowledge and expertise have guided departmental spending reviews; the design and advancement of large-scale government programs; federal involvement in major infrastructure projects with provinces, territories and municipalities as well as private-sector partners; and large-scale capital investments.

His experience and knowledge of the federal government will be an asset to VIA HFR, notably for his time at the Treasury Board Secretariat, and at Infrastructure Canada where he led complex negotiations to develop realistic program designs, implementation plans, and results tracking for successful programs. His work spanned climate change, domestic shipbuilding, the reviews of departmental spending, and the reviews of corporate plans of Crown corporations within the economic sector.

Before joining VIA HFR, Tom delivered quality internal services at the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Canada School of Public Service, where he focused on digitizing services and improving quality.

Motivated by public service, Tom will seek new and better ways to implement service options.  Transparency and rigour are personal values that he expects of the entire team.

Tom holds an MBA from Carleton University and certification from CPA Canada's Advanced Executive Finance and Accounting Program.

Headshot of Widad Mas

Director, Project Management Office

Why I chose to work on this project?

A project of the magnitude of the HFR is a challenge from all points of view: human, technical, financial, and social acceptability. To me, this mega project is about connecting Canadians to what matters to them. Knowing how to transform the challenges into opportunities and contributing to value creation for the Canadian economy is what motivates me the most. With a team of outstanding professionals, I know we will succeed!


Widad Mas is a seasoned strategy and project management professional with an international education and experience in corporate, government and small company environments.

With over 15 years of proven leadership in highly complex, multi-stakeholder, multi-cultural mandates, Widad is recognized for building and sustaining collaborative environments, mobilizing teams, and maintaining trusting relationships while driving progress and results.

Widad is also passionate about innovation & creativity as growth drivers for organizations, people, communities, and ecosystems. At VIA Rail, she has distinguished herself at as a senior advisor in continuous improvement, as a chief advisor on strategic initiatives and as a Senior project manager in the HFR project office. Widad has successfully established, implemented, and led the HFR project management office since 2019 before becoming its Director.

Her management of various projects has always been able to combine the human aspect, the technical aspect, and the innovation aspect. While remaining strategic, she knows how to evaluate each criterion, determine their impacts, and identify the best options. She knows how to surround herself with competent and passionate people and demonstrates outstanding collaboration and leadership.

With a master's degree in real estate engineering, a bachelor's degree in applied mathematics (Université Paris-Est, France) and a certification in creativity management in the innovation society (HEC Montréal), she is a major asset for VIA HFR.

Headshot of Graeme Hampshire.

Project Director

Why I chose to work on this project?

I have witnessed the benefits and have firsthand knowledge of the transformative impact that modern, resilient, and sustainable rail services can have on people’s lives. I am grateful for the opportunity to join the HFR Team and bring my experience and knowledge of the rail and infrastructure sectors to make high frequency rail service in Canada a reality.


A chartered engineer for nearly 40 years, Graeme Hampshire has held senior positions in major transportation and infrastructure organizations in the rail and aviation sectors around the world. He has also played key roles with private and government organizations and national rail network. His clients have included project developers, regulators and operators across the supply chain.

In the UK rail sector, Graeme has over 20 years' experience in franchising and was Chairman of the Rail Delivery Group Reform Board. He was Business Development Director for Stagecoach plc, a UK rail and bus operator, and Franchise Director for the Strategic Rail Authority in the UK.

He has worked in all areas of franchising having leased and managed most of the UK network, either for the Strategic Rail Authority or for operators and led bids for some 12 franchises and contracts, including both Virgin West Coast and East Coast operations.

Prior to joining the High Frequency Rail project full time, he was involved in projects in throughout Europe, including the High Speed Line project in the Netherlands, Australia, Botswana and the United States. In Canada, he recently served as Consortium Director for the procurement of the Metrolinx OnCorr RER. He also played a leading role in the design of High Speed 1 in UK.

Graeme holds a MA from Cambridge University and an MBA from Brunel University. His wife Liz and four adult children are delighted he has taken this role.

Headshot of Richard Moura.

Director of Rail Access

Why I chose to work on this project?

This is a marquee project which will change the lives of Canadians for decades and a project that I want to be a part of. I also chose to work on this project for my kids. As my kids get older, I want them to have the ability to go to school and find a career in eastern Canada where they are always just a short train trip away for Sunday dinners.


Richard Moura has joined the HFR executive team as the Director of Rail Access. Richard is tasked with the critical mission of working collaboratively with host railways to increase both passenger service and freight capacity within Canada.

Richard will leverage his more than 15 years of private and public rail sector in the fields of engineering, operations and commercial negotiations. Richard is a professional engineer who has successfully managed, bid, closed and delivered some of Canada’s transformational rail projects over the last eight years.

Richard studied Photonics Engineering before moving into Rail Signalling for CN Rail. He then moved on to build a signals engineering group at Metrolinx where he helped deliver service improvements for the Greater Toronto Area. Finally, Richard moved on to SNC-Lavalin where he helped bid and deliver some of Canada’s iconic rail projects.

What his resume does not show is that he’s a life learner who uses physics and first-principles thinking to bring clarity to complex issues. When he’s not working on major infrastructure projects, he spends most of his time being a father of three young kids. Richard says, “My kids have taught me more in the last seven years than what I have learned through a lifetime of experiences, and I love every minute of it.”

Headshot of Jacques Fauteux.

Director of Strategic Engagement

Why I chose to work on this project?

I am excited to rekindle previous relationships and make new ones as I return to the passenger rail business. High Frequency Rail is a huge, complex and vitally important task. I am privileged to be part of the team responsible to contribute to this major infrastructure project which will benefit Canadians, our communities and environment.


Jacques Fauteux has returned to the passenger rail business and now leads communications, public affairs, Indigenous relations for the High Frequency Rail Integrated Project Office.

Prior to his present role, Jacques worked as the Assistant Chief Statistician responsible for Strategic Engagement at Statistics Canada where he directed a multi-disciplinary team of approximately 500 communications, dissemination and data access experts who helped more Canadians to connect with their data and statistical insights.

Before joining Statistics Canada, Jacques established and led VIA Rail’s Government and Community Relations office where he implemented a comprehensive strategy which helped the passenger rail company increase its visibility with key stakeholders and decision-makers. With his team, he built collaborative and productive relations with community and indigenous leaders, public servants and elected officials to advance some major, multi-billion dollar projects that are revitalizing intercity passenger rail travel.

For nearly seven years, Jacques served Canadians and elected officials. First as a deputy director in the Prime Minister's Office, and later as a director or chief of staff in the offices of ministers responsible for transport, infrastructure, economic development, national defence, Veterans’ affairs and the Asia–Pacific Gateway.

Jacques also served close to 25 years as a naval officer in the Canadian Armed Forces, where he managed the complex operations of a naval warship and directed public affairs teams in Canada as well as international operations.

Jacques holds an MBA from Royal Roads University, an Honours Bachelor of Arts (politics and history) from the Royal Military College of Canada, and a public relations certificate from Toronto Metropolitan University. He volunteers as a board member for the Ottawa Heart Institute Research Corporation, the Canadian Forces Liaison Council, and the World Remembers.

Jacques lives in Ottawa with his wife Joanne. He has three daughters. He is an avid but not necessarily fast cyclist. His creative pursuits include artisan bread-making and photography.

Headshot photo of Malcolm Bernard

Lead, Corporate Communications

Why I chose to work on this project?

The opportunity to introduce Canadians to this massive project is irresistible. I am here to build a communications program and team that helps Canadians to understand how we can create a better way to travel between our largest cities – and to help our highly talented technical team share their knowledge and insights.


Malcolm is a corporate communications strategist and highly accomplished trainer who coaches executives for public speaking roles, presentations and media interviews. Before joining VIA HFR, he established and operated a consulting firm whose clients included public and private corporations, as well as the federal government, the Nunavut territorial government, and First Nations.

In government, he served as communications director for the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, where he managed political communications for the government’s response to the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, the Nisga’a Final Agreement, and the creation of the Nunavut territory.

Previously, Malcolm held leadership positions in Canadian media organizations. He directed daily news coverage and special events from Parliament Hill in Ottawa for the broadcast division of The Canadian Press, anchored national radio news coverage of several elections and political events, and provided commentary on network television broadcasts.

Malcolm holds an MBA from the University of Ottawa and an MA in political science (international relations) from Carleton University.

Headshot photo of Gabriel Lacombe

Lead, Indigenous Community Relations

Why I chose to work on this project?

I chose to participate in the High Frequency Rail project because it is an eco-friendly project that will contribute to Canada's economic vitality. I am particularly pleased to be able to work closely with Indigenous peoples to support their socio-economic development and foster reconciliation


Gabriel has more than twenty years of experience in the field of relations with Indigenous peoples—both within the federal government and in the private sector. His work with Indigenous nations has spanned the entire country.

Prior to joining the VIA HFR project team, he worked on numerous Infrastructure Canada challenges as an Environmental Review and Approvals Sector Leader, where he was responsible for building constructive working relationships with Indigenous peoples potentially affected by public infrastructure projects funded by the department.

He has also held responsibilities as a senior Indigenous consultation advisor for the private sector on a major linear resource development project in Quebec and Ontario.

Over the course of his career, he has worked as a senior Indigenous consultation advisor and manager of intergovernmental affairs, and as a modern treaty negotiator with the Department of Indigenous Services Canada and the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs.

He has also led interdepartmental committees to promote coherence in the Government of Canada's consultation activities, provided policy advice and expertise to federal departments, and facilitated training workshops in Quebec on the duty to consult and accommodate Indigenous peoples. His responsibilities have allowed him to develop and maintain close relationships with Indigenous communities and organizations in Quebec and Ontario, as well as with provincial departments and agencies.

Gabriel holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Biology and a Master's degree in Natural Resources and Environmental Management. He lives in Quebec City and enjoys cycling, yoga, paddle boarding, and swimming.

Headshot of Sophie Roux

Lead, Community and Stakeholder Relations

Why I chose to work on this project?

The appeal of public service and the importance of creating enduring connections are ingrained in my DNA. The HFR will transform the face of passenger rail service in Canada. With over 1,000 kilometres of new passenger lanes, the number of communities, organizations and individuals affected, interested or concerned by this project is immense. We have a duty to reach out to as many stakeholders as possible, not only to demonstrate the merits of the HFR, but also to be in "listening mode". This is the key to achieving the best possible project with and for the general public. I'm privileged to be able to contribute to the progress of such a significant project.


A high-level manager and seasoned professional in community relations, public affairs and corporate communications, Sophie Roux plays a central role in the smooth running of exchanges with all project stakeholders. The realization of the HFR requires rigor, openness, listening and empathy. These values are part of Sophie's DNA, and she has always applied them to the significant mandates she has led throughout her career.

With more than 20 years' experience in national organizations, politics, associations, private enterprise and the public sector, Sophie has always positioned herself to develop the best possible projects, with respect for all. She also brings in-depth knowledge of government and Crown corporations. Having held the position of Vice-President, Public Affairs at the Port of Montreal, she has a solid knowledge of port infrastructures and has developed a network in the industry.

Sensitive to sustainable development and the social acceptability of projects, Sophie is a member of the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) and has always made a point of applying best practices in this area. Over the course of her career, she has organized and participated in numerous engagement strategies. Despite the complexity of the mandates, she has always managed to forge lasting relationships and make a positive contribution to the objectives pursued.

Devoted to her community, Sophie knows and understands the expectations, needs and concerns of all stakeholders, whether local, regional, economic, environmental or social. She makes a point of being transparent with all partners and of being available to meet them to discuss the HFR project.

Fluently bilingual and having split her career between Ottawa and Montreal, Sophie holds a degree in political science from McGill University and an MBA from Royal Roads University. She has won numerous awards for the high-impact campaigns and public events produced by her and the teams she has led.

The addition of these professionals to our team will allow us to pursue all of the steps that will lead to the realization of the most important rail project in over a century.

More from HFR

Board Members

Four directors have been appointed to the VIA HFR board.

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A Progressive Public-Private Partnership (P3) Model

Through this procurement process, the Government of Canada will seek a private partner to take an innovative and collaborative approach for the engineering design and development of HFR.

Learn more

HFR and You

We strongly believe that good planning involves the community and better decisions are made when many perspectives are considered. Your opinion matters.

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