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18 Influential Women in Diversity and HR for 2013 (by Diversity Canada Magazine )


Connecting Innovative Aboriginal and Visible Minority Companies and Professionals to Corporate Canada and the Government Through Diversity

April 1st, 2013

Contact: Sarah Jia
Diversity Canada Magazine
Tel: 416-628-8473

18 Influential Women in Diversity and HR for 2013


Diversity Canada Magazine is very proud to present 18 women executives and managers who have been thought and action leaders in opening doors and removing barriers for Women, Aboriginals and Visible Minorities in Canada. The women have relentlessly worked within their organizations and communities to develop inclusive best practices in groundbreaking ways. The winners will be featured in the 2013 spring issue of Diversity Canada Magazine, which will be distributed at several major diversity and Human Resources conferences and mailed to thousands of top-level corporate executives.

Diversity Canada Magazine issued a call for nominations for this prestigious honour to a number of Canadian businesses and received 41 nominations. The large number of responses for the first annual award is an indication of the dedicated efforts of influential women who are using their authority, experience, knowledge, and expertise to create opportunities for others. The criteria to qualify for nomination included demonstration of leadership and achievement in growing supplier and workforce diversity. This award recognizes women who use their positions and talents to develop substantial and duplicable programs that have been successful in their organizations and set high standards within their respective industries. They use a variety of approaches that include recruiting, networking, training, and the development of measurement tools so that accountability is built into the diversity programs. The awardees work closely with their department staff and company-wide managers to ensure that personnel are working towards similar goals.

The advocacy efforts of the 18 named women leaders include the design of best practices, the development of inclusive education and training programs, and an unrelenting public relations effort within their own companies, agencies, and organizations. It takes experience, knowledge, talent, and education to reach the leadership positions they hold. However, what is often overlooked is that it also takes patience, understanding, intuitiveness, and a willingness to adapt to local and global conditions to drive change within their own organizations.

Every Canadian business should take note of these honourees as role models. As they build internal support for diversity, they also have a large presence in their communities. Many devote hundreds of personal hours to charities working to improve the lives of others. The common theme among the professional profiles is the belief that the future success of Canadian firms in the global market relies on diversity being a natural and integrated business strategy. They are playing critical roles in the widespread Canadian government’s efforts to attract top talent and skills necessary to fill the needs of industries coast to coast.

This is the first time that Diversity Canada Magazine has awarded honours to influential women. The women were nominated by peers or someone within their organizations familiar with their efforts on behalf of promoting diversity within supply chains and the workforce. The goal of the awards is to shine a spotlight on the women executives and managers who have tirelessly developed best practices for attracting and retaining diverse talent. They often face enormous hurdles that must be crossed, like a constantly shifting business environment, budgetary limitations, and intense global competition for the people they hope to attract. Facing these hurdles only seems to make the honourees more creative and more determined to succeed in their pursuit of excellence.

The women awarded the first 2013 Influential Women in Diversity and HR come from diverse backgrounds and industries. They represent businesses in technology, banking, staffing, auto manufacturing, banking and finance, retail, food manufacturing, electrical distribution, and others. Also represented are women leading nonprofit organizations like the Professional Women’s Network and CAMSC, which are dedicated to providing the kind of support business leaders appreciate in their efforts to achieve excellence.

Diversity Canada Magazine is one of the leading magazines in Canada committed to diversity and human resources. It provides cutting edge content to help Corporate Canada and the government understand the challenges and opportunities in finding qualified Women, Aboriginals, and Visible Minority professionals and businesses to employ or do business with. Diversity Canada Magazine goes right to the heart of efforts to expand supplier and workforce diversity by connecting with leaders in the field to identify best practices and then sharing the information so others may get the benefit of their experience and efforts.


18 Influential Women in Diversity and HR for 2013 are:

Debra Quade


Marcia Seymour

TD Bank

Melinda Painter


N. Marcella McCullough

Ford Motor Company

Cassandra Dorrington


Donna Pascale

Acklands Grainger

Dora Silva-Bolanos


Elaine Gerrie

Gerrie Electric

Jill Smart


Karmaleta Cooper Mosley

BMO Financial Group

Laura Desjardins


Lori Vaughn


Linda A. Ware

General Motors

Mary Anderson

WEConnect Canada

Michelle Pockey

Fasken Martineau

Stacey Allerton

Ford Motor Company

Pascale Legros