Our staff & contributors

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Troy Lanigan

Founder and CEO

Troy Lanigan is a consultant who works with clients in the fields of advocacy and public policy.

Prior to starting his consulting business, Troy worked in a variety of capacities with the Canadian Taxpayers Federation over 26 years including spokesperson in his home province of British Columbia, overseeing national communications and as president and CEO for ten years.

He is the author of Fighting for Taxpayers: Battles Fought and Battles Ahead and is currently chairman of the World Taxpayers Associations an umbrella group of approximately 60 taxpayer organizations on six continents – purposed for networking, best practices exchange, regional forums and support for new organizations.

He has helped found two organizations: the campus-based campaign Generation Screwed and the storytelling think tank SecondStreet.org.

Troy enjoys travel, attempting to golf, playing guitar and participating in various athletic endeavours. Troy has run six marathons and is a two-time finisher of Ironman Canada but is today more likely to be found watching football or F1 in front of a television. He and his wife Erika have four children and live in Victoria, BC. 

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Mark Milke

Founder and Senior Fellow

Mark Milke, Ph.D. is an author, policy analyst, non-profit consultant and columnist with four books and dozens of studies published across Canada and internationally in the last two decades. 

Mark is president of the Sir Winston Churchill Society of Calgary, has a Ph.D. in International Relations and Political Philosophy from University of Calgary, is past President of Civitas—a Society for Ideas, and is an occasional lecturer in Political Science.

Mark’s ongoing policy work has been published by think tanks in Canada, the United States and Europe including the Fraser Institute, the American Enterprise Institute and Brussels-based Centre for European Studies. He has been interviewed by the New York Times and Wall Street Journal and all major Canadian media.

Mark’s columns appear regularly in the Globe and Mail, National Post and Maclean’s. His topics touch on everything from taxes, civil rights, and private property to airline competition, insurance, aboriginal policy, government monopolies and the folly of crony capitalism to lighter topics such as architecture, art, and hiking.

Mark’s doctorate dissertation analyzed the rhetoric of anti-Americanism in Canada while his Master’s thesis chronicled the double standards on human rights in East Asia. Mark lives in Calgary and is an active hiker, skier and runner with an interest in architecture, photography, cities, and history.

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Colin Craig

President

Colin Craig has nearly 20 years of public policy experience and has helped shape government decisions at the municipal, provincial and federal level.

Colin currently serves as President of SecondStreet.org, a new Canadian think tank, and previously worked for the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF), a non-profit taxpayers’ watchdog organization.

During his time with the CTF, he led the organization’s efforts to convince the federal government to draft and pass the First Nations Financial Transparency Act. He was also instrumental in exposing problems with the City of Winnipeg’s new police headquarters (leading to an RCMP investigation) and brought to light the City of Calgary’s golden retirement bonus scheme (currently being phased out). Colin also helped with the CTF’s efforts to convince a majority of voters to vote “no” during Calgary’s Olympic bid plebiscite (2018).

Colin has an MBA and a degree in economics from the University of Manitoba, and is also the author of The Government Wears Prada – a book that examines how governments in Canada can address enormous cost pressures associated with Canada’s aging population without raising taxes.

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Heidi McKillop

Communications Director

Heidi McKillop is a country girl at heart, born and raised in a small village called Harvey Station, New Brunswick. Heidi’s first job, age 14, was washing dishes and preparing meals at the local nursing home. She has also worked within the restaurant industry, tourism, long term care, customer service, office management, and the energy industry. Heidi earned her first degree in sociology at St.Thomas University. She later completed her second degree in social work from St.Thomas. 

Heidi has lived in numerous provinces in Canada including, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Alberta. In 2013, Heidi drove across Canada to experience life in the west, arriving in Calgary during the floods in 2013. Heidi McKillop became a first-time film director and producer in Calgary, Alberta. She has spent the last two years creating and filming a documentary about our national energy needs, titled “A Stranded Nation”. The documentary takes a balanced approach in examining the narrative between economic development and environmental sustainability. Heidi later went on to work in the energy sector, focussing on business development, marketing and utilizing green technologies for remote well sites.  

Heidi enjoys camping and hiking in the beautiful Kananaskis Country. She also enjoys horseback riding and learning new ranching skills. She is an avid reader and loves the social aspects of living in downtown Calgary.

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Melanie Harvie

Executive Secretary

Melanie was born and raised in Flin Flon (Manitoba) and currently works part-time as Executive Secretary for SecondStreet.org.

Melanie also serves as the Executive Vice President of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, Auditor and Assistant Secretary for the World Taxpayers Associations and acts as Administrator for Civitas Canada.

Melanie currently lives in Regina, Saskatchewan with her family and spends her spare time running half marathons (slowly) and doing CrossFit (badly).

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Kris Sims

Contributor

Born in the town of Hope and raised on both sides of the Strait of Georgia, Kris has been employed (and taxed) since she was 12 years old, working in horse stables, fast food joints and gas stations before attending journalism school at BCIT in Burnaby.

Kris worked in radio in the Comox Valley before moving to Ottawa to work as a legislative assistant on Parliament Hill. She then joined Ottawa News Talk Radio 580 CFRA as a reporter and anchor, eventually becoming a journalist for the CTV parliamentary bureau.
Kris was a founding reporter for Sun News Network and proudly covered issues of big government, personal liberty and the rights of small-town and rural Canadians until SNN was shut down. She then worked as the director of communications for Veterans Affairs Minister Erin O’Toole, and as the senior producer for Evan Solomon at CFRA Radio. She is proud to return to her home of British Columbia to fight for the rights of all taxpayers.

When she isn’t digging through expense reports and doing media interviews, Kris can be found reading Ayn Rand on the banks of the Fraser River with her husband and their two children.

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Paige MacPherson

Contributor

Paige became Atlantic Director of the CTF in 2018, previously working as CTF Alberta Director starting in 2015. Throughout her career she’s had a passion for giving a voice to taxpayers and pushing for government accountability.

Paige was raised in Pickering, Ontario and her family is from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. Her work has taken her from coast-to-coast-to-coast, in Halifax, Cape Breton, Fredericton, Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Whitehorse.

As a former reporter and weekend host for Sun News Network, Paige traveled across the country to cover four provincial elections. She is a contributing writer to the New Brunswick-based Canadians for Affordable Energy. Paige has published research on education policy in Canada, and for several years she has contributed opinions and news coverage to newspapers, magazines and radio programs across Canada.

Prior to media, Paige worked in communications and media relations at the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies (AIMS), a Halifax-based think tank. While there she started AIMS on Campus, a free-market university outreach program.

Paige has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Dalhousie University and a Master of Public Policy from the University of Calgary.
Paige enjoys exploring Canada and spending time with her friends, family and her dog Coco. She and her family call Halifax home.