Canada Soccer president Nick Bontis has resigned amid an ongoing labour dispute between the governing body and the men’s and women’s national teams.
They called off a planned strike earlier this month because of threats of legal action by Canada Soccer (CSA).
The players protested against CSA during the recent SheBelieves Cup.
They wore purple T-shirts with the phrase “enough is enough” before their matches.
Canada’s men went on strike in June 2022 after accusing CSA of “disrespect” over World Cup prize money and have said they “wholeheartedly support” the women’s side, with both national teams previously calling for a change in CSA leadership.
In a statement announcing his resignation, Bontis said he believed the two national sides will sign “an historic collective bargaining agreement”.
“Once signed, it will be a landmark deal that will set our nation apart from virtually every other Fifa member association,” he added.
“While I have been one of the biggest proponents of equalising the competitive performance environment for our women’s national team, I will unfortunately not be leading this organisation when it happens.
“I acknowledge that this moment requires change. “
The CSA has said it has a “proven track record” of supporting women’s football, adding pay equality was “at the core” of negotiations with the national team players.
The CSA spent $11m (£6.72m) on the men’s programme in 2021 and $5.1m (£3.11m) on the women’s programme.
The women’s players said the “disgusting” discrepancy between the Canada men’s and women’s programmes became apparent at last year’s men’s World Cup in Qatar.
They are looking for the same backing for this year’s Women’s World Cup as the men received before Qatar, where they competed in the tournament for the first time in 37 years.
Canada’s women, who are sixth in the world rankings and won Olympic gold in 2021, are in Group B for the Women’s World Cup, which takes place from 20 July to 20 August in Australia and New Zealand.