Leslie Woo is Chief Planning and Development Officer at Metrolinx, the regional transportation authority for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area, the fastest growing urban region in Canada. Leslie is the executive lead for transportation planning, a multi-billion dollar real estate portfolio and a $35B expansion in public transit infrastructure (approximately $4B capex). Leslie was named Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in 2017, Spacing Toronto’s Transit Change-maker of 2016, and Canada’s Women’s Infrastructure Network’s 2015 Outstanding Leader.
Leslie leads the strategic transportation planning for a full range of mobility services. She heads business areas in benefits management, business case evaluation, design excellence, strategic land development and corporate property management. Leslie manages key relationships with municipalities, not-for-profits and the private sector. She is also a champion for driving sustainability and Metrolinx’s network for women.
Prior to Metrolinx Leslie worked in the municipal, private and not-for-profit sectors. She was the key author of the original Greater Golden Horseshoe Growth Plan (2006), which by 2016 had resulted in urban intensification totalling over 18 per cent increase in multi-family residential development, a two-thirds reduction of greenfield lands consumption, and conserved about 800 square kilometres of agricultural and rural land.
Leslie is a member of the Americas Executive Committee and Governing Trustee with the Urban Land Institute, and a retired member of the Ontario Association of Architects. A 2011/12 Fellow of the International Women’s Forum, Leslie’s community leadership includes her current role as Board Director with Women’s’ College Hospital and former role on the board of YMCA for the Greater Toronto Area for eight years (2009 – 2017).
Leslie is the creator of the blog shebuildcities.org celebrating women city builders around the world. Leslie received a Bachelor of Environmental Studies and a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Waterloo where she also studied Urban and Regional Planning. She is also the 2015 recipient of the Renison University College Distinguished Alumna Award. Born in Trinidad, Leslie is the mother of two.