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Canadian Gender and Good Governance Alliance established to advance gender diversity on boards and executive positions

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Date: November 7, 2017

Related Issues Corporate / Public Governance

Unprecedented collaboration of seven advocacy groups, led by the 30% Club Canada, aims to reduce distraction, amplify impact and deliver a unified voice.

 

TORONTO, November 7, 2017 – Seven of Canada’s most active and influential organizations dedicated to advancing good governance and gender equality in the workplace have come together to form the Canadian Gender and Good Governance Alliance (CGGGA).   The new group aims to amplify and coordinate efforts to accelerate gender parity on boards and in executive positions, and contribute to public policy as an advisor for government and regulators.  It is the first of its kind in North America.

 

Members of the CGGGA include the 30% Club Canada, the Business Council of Canada, Canadian Coalition for Good Governance (CCGG), Catalyst Canada, the Clarkson Centre (CCBE), the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD) and Women in Capital Markets.

 

“We must continue driving real change in Canada’s boardrooms, executive offices and workplaces in order to achieve gender balance. The only path forward is inclusion – where we leverage differences and work towards building a stronger, more dynamic corporate Canada. We need progressive and collaborative efforts like the Alliance to motivate collective action, advance progress for Canada’s talented women and strengthen our economic future,” says Victor Dodig, Chair of the 30% Club Canada and the Catalyst Canada Advisory Board.

 

“The Alliance is unifying industry-leading research, education and advocacy perspectives to drive critical change,” says Ekta Mendhi, Co-Chair, Women in Leadership, Women in Capital Markets and Co-Chair of the CGGGA. “We are committed to partnering with businesses, investors, governments and regulators to address the persistent challenges.”

 

“Each of these organizations brings a wealth of expertise, passion and commitment to advancing gender equality, ” says Professor Beatrix Dart, Executive Director, Initiative for Women in Business, Rotman School of Management, and Co-Chair of the CGGGA.  “Bold action is required to advance women at executive levels and together, we are prepared to be bold.”

 

The first joint initiative of the Alliance is the creation of the Directors’ Playbook, which presents a curation of practical tools that companies can use to achieve gender balance on boards through deliberate action.

 

The playbook contains perspectives, guidance and templates for:

  • Formalizing board evaluations processes;
  • Instituting term and age limits;
  • Customizing and using board competency matrices;
  • Developing and complying with a gender diversity policy; and
  • Strategies for board member recruitment

 

The Canadian Gender and Good Governance Alliance invites businesses, regulators, institutional investors and other interested stakeholders who require assistance in advancing gender diversity to use the Alliance as a resource. Learn more at www.cggga.ca.

 

Additional Quotes

 

“Canada continues to lag behind other developed nations in terms of gender balance on corporate boards, and there is urgency to turn the tide.  Catalyst looks forward to continuing to contribute to this important new Alliance, and to accelerate progress for women.”

Tanya van Biesen, Executive Director, Catalyst Canada

 

“We are thrilled to see so many leading organizations come together to form the Canadian Gender and Good Governance Alliance and produce such a user-friendly document.  We hope our issuers will find this Playbook to be a useful tool as they continue on the path of increasing gender diversity at both the Board and executive officer level.”

Maureen Jensen, Chair and CEO, Ontario Securities Commission

 

“Gender diversity has been shown again and again to be a winning corporate strategy. The Business Council of Canada heartily supports the work of the Canadian Gender and Good Governance Alliance and is proud to be associated with the launch of this Directors’ Playbook.”

The Honourable John Manley, President and CEO, Business Council of Canada

 

“The reasons for more diverse boards are clear: they are key to helping companies advance, innovate, profit and grow. This Playbook helps us move past the rationale and towards more practical tools to realize diversity.”

Rahul Bhardwaj, President and CEO of the Institute of Corporate Directors

 

“CCGG believes that, given the very slow rate of progress on increasing the number of women on boards in particular, investors and other stakeholders need to do more to effect more rapid change.  The Alliance’s Playbook provides a great, practical tool to do just that.”

Julie Cays, Chair, Canadian Coalition for Good Governance

 

“CCGG’s institutional investor members welcome this important initiative and the opportunity to lend our collective voice to furthering the goal of enhancing gender diversity on Canadian boards and in senior management.”

Steve Erlichman, Executive Director, Canadian Coalition for Good Governance

 

“Women in Capital Markets is proud to be a member of The Canadian Gender and Good Governance Alliance. By working together and presenting a united voice in advocacy we can make a bigger difference than has been achieved in the past. This is a critical issue that all Canadians should be concerned with so that Canadian businesses can be more profitable and more efficient – a result that numerous studies have shown to be very clear.”

Jeannie Collins-Ardern, Interim CEO & President, Women in Capital Markets

 

“The Clarkson Centre has studied Canadian corporate governance for more than 15 years, and there is no area where we have seen less progress than women on boards.  The Alliance shows that all sides of the table are unanimous that urgent improvement is needed, and we will provide the tools to facilitate change.”

Matt Fullbrook, Manager, Clarkson Centre for Board Effectiveness, at Rotman School of Management

 

SOURCE Canadian Gender and Good Governance Alliance

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