Joe Hickey, President and CEO of ROCK Networks, Up for Spot on CIRA’s Board of Directors

An independent and influential arbiter of the future development of the internet in Canada – that is Joe’s vision for CIRA with him on the Board of Directors. With extensive experience in the high-tech industry, Joe’s entire career has been focused on new innovations and impact on the market. Joe’s experience spans 30 years in large companies such as Nortel Networks, Silicon Valley innovation experience, international work experience in over 40 countries globally, board experience with CENGN, and now running ROCK Networks. Bringing this impressive background as an innovator and entrepreneur to the role of Board Director, Joe will support the future growth and aspiration of CIRA as well as help CIRA create a digital economy for Canada that is the envy of the world.

Check out Joe’s full candidate profile here.

Voting Opens on September 23 and runs to September 30.


Joe’s career has spanned 30 years, with roles in Canada, the US, and India and business in over 40 countries around the world. No matter the role, Joe has always been an innovator, including in his role as the founder and CEO of ROCK Networks Inc. With Joe’s leadership, ROCK Networks was recently ranked #1 on the Fastest Growing Companies list in Ottawa with 3-year growth of over 5000%.

Joe has a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering from Memorial University of Newfoundland and an Executive MBA from the University of Toronto.

Joe spends his volunteer time on boards, including the Ottawa Children’s Treatment Center (2004-2008) and CENGN (2014 to Current), as well as in his local community church. Joe is married to Jeanette and they have 5 children, 1 grandchild, and 2 dogs.


  • 1990: Graduated from mechanical engineering at Memorial University
  • 1996: Finished Executive MBA at the University of Toronto
  • 1996: Joined Nortel’s first IP business unit
  • 1999: Moved to California to join the Shasta Networks business and became the youngest Vice President and General Manager in Nortel
  • 2002/2003: Became CEO of two venture funded start-ups
  • 2007: Joined ROCK Networks as Managing Director and President
  • 2008: Moved to India as the SVP customer Relations for ACME Telepower, transforming the company from a product sales focused to a managed services business and won a major contract with Aircel worth $400M
  • 2009: Moved back to Canada and joined Ultra Electronics in a Global VP Business Development and Marketing role, responsible for a $650M contract with the US Army and the lead in the creation of a next generation radio product, Orion
  • 2012: Joined small family owned business Christie Walther Communications where he turned the company into a profitable, award winning company, including becoming the first Canadian Dealer for Motorola to win their Global Customer Excellence Award in 2015
  • 2016: Became President, CEO, and Majority Owner of ROCK Networks


  • 2020: Won Atlantic Business Journal’s Top 50 CEOs award
  • 2019: Led ROCK Networks to the #1 spot on the Fastest Growing Companies list in Ottawa with 3-year growth of over 5000%
  • 2015: Received Ottawa Business Journal / Ottawa Chamber of Commerce “Employees’ Choice Award”
  • 2014: Received the Motorola Global Partner Empower Customer Excellence Award
  • 2013: Received the Motorola Canadian Channel Partner of the Year Award
  • 2013: Received the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce Best Ottawa Business Award for Sales Initiative of the Year
  • 2005: Top 40 Under 40 Award Winner Ottawa
  • 2002: Became the youngest Vice President and General Manager at Nortel
  • 2001: Frost and Sullivan Award Excellence in Business Development promoting IP-VPN market


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