President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) Romy Bowers has confirmed that she will be stepping down from her role with the national housing agency.

Bowers, who has served as head of CMHC since April 2021, is set to depart CMHC in December 2023 and will begin a new role leading the Office of Risk Management at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in January 2024, where she will be based in Washington, DC.

”During my nine years at CMHC, I had the good fortune to work with a diverse group of committed housing leaders from across Canada,” Bowers said in a LinkedIn post over the weekend.

“Housing affordability is one of the critical economic and social issues facing our country. It is a complex issue that requires strong partnerships and focus. In recent years, I have seen the emergence of a strong coalition of housing leaders working together to improve housing outcomes in a constructive and collaborative manner. I wanted to thank all those in the housing sector who have been such great partners in my work.”

Michel Tremblay, who is currently the Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice-President of Corporate Services for CMHC, will assume Bowers’ responsibilities until new leadership is appointed by the Governor in Council.

News of Bowers’ departure from CMHC broke on Friday afternoon, at which time the Government of Canada said in a press release that an “open, transparent, and merit-based” selection process to identify Bowers’ replacement will “soon” be underway.

“The Board will be actively engaged with the Government of Canada in the process of identifying the CMHC’s next leader, and is fully committed to ensuring a smooth and seamless transition during this period,” said Derek Ballantyne, Chair of the CMHC Board of Directors.

In addition to selecting a new president and CEO, the federal government will also be continuing its efforts to fill a number of CMHC Board of Director positions, according to the press release.

“Ongoing recruitment will ensure that CMHC is ready to meet the challenges ahead in executing on its important mandate to improve access to affordable, safe, and inclusive housing options for Canadians.”