B.C. Economic Forum: Women as a Catalyst for Growth. Presented by Deloitte

Friday, October 23, 2015
7:45 AM
Add to Calendar
Schedule:Registration & Breakfast: 7:45 - 8:30 a.m.
Program: 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Lunch: 12:00 - 12:45 p.m.
Program: 12:45 - 2:15 p.m.

"Diversity is the cornerstone to economic and social success and the statistics prove that those that embrace it outperform the rest. The initial forum last year stimulated some great dialogue and highlighted a number of critically important reasons why Diversity is an economic and social imperative to success. Therefore, I would highly recommend to all business owners, professionals or leaders, male or female, to attend the upcoming B.C. Women's Economic Forum this October 23."

—Tim Manning, Regional Vice President, Commercial Financial Services, RBC Royal Bank

"The 2014 B.C. Women's Economic Forum was a high-energy and impactful event. The Action Plan which came out of it has generated clear and practical ways in which we can all work together to grow women's economic contributions in B.C.

I look forward to the 2015 Forum. These events are bringing unique groupings of people to come up with historic ways to help B.C. be on the forefront of change through collaboration to promote diversity, champion women, foster positive mindsets, enhance the education system, and get more men involved in this process. I'm sure this event will be the 'happening place to be' on October. 23.

—Laurel Douglas, CEO, Women's Enterprise Centre
2015 Recipient of the Vancouver Board of Trade 'Community Catalyst Award'

"BDC is delighted to be a partner in this year's Forum. As Canada's Business Development Bank, we are committed to helping entrepreneurs build growing, resilient and profitable businesses. To do so, our team of business bankers and consultants offer many resources to support women entrepreneurs in achieving their goals. We are also increasing our support for organizations and initiatives dedicated to creating networking and mentoring opportunities for women business owners. At BDC, we believe you can do it ."

—Lesley Lawrence, Senior-Vice President, Financing and Consulting - British-Columbia and North - Business Development Bank of Canada

bc econ women 680w

B.C.'s economy needs more women leaders — in business, on boards and in growing industries.

The inaugural forum in October 2014 highlighted opportunities here in B.C. to support women in business and to advance the conversation into action strategies for economic growth. Most importantly, it resulted in feedback to create Women as a Catalyst for Growth: A B.C. Action Plan which outlines practical recommendations for government, business and individuals — to shape policy and ultimately create change. In order to increase the economic growth and impact of women in B.C. and Canada, the key recommendations in this action plan include:

  1. Promote and advocate diversity
  2. Champion women
  3. Foster positive & self affirming mindsets
  4. Incorporate a diversity focus in early education
  5. Activate men

To ensure the successful implementation of this action plan, we need organizations and individuals to take action now. These combined actions will propel us towards sustained social and cultural changes. The result will be greater economic growth through the promotion of gender diversity in leadership and throughout our workforce in B.C. and in Canada. The time for action is now!


  • Help to grow the economic impact and outcomes for women in B.C. and contribute to the growth of our provincial economy and beyond.
  • Engage with men, women, government and corporations to commit to advancing women in senior leadership.
  • Discuss and commit to your personal plan of action.

Join the leaders — men and women in your community — in a powerful and engaging working forum.


The Honourable Coralee OakesMinister of Small Business, Red-Tape Reduction and Minister Responsible for the Liquor Distribution Branch, Government of British Columbia


Taking action: Tackling the diversity challenge
Leaders who are taking action will share their experiences as well as specific examples of how they, their organizations and the broader world are making diversity a priority. The impacts of these actions will also be discussed.

Jay Dilley olivier-joe.jpg Michelle Osry Lois Nahirney

Jay Dilley, President, HawkAir

Joe Olivier, Regional Vice President, Commercial Financial Services for B.C., RBC

Michelle Osry, Partner, Deloitte

Moderator – Lois Nahirney, CEO, DNA Power


The Honourable Shirley Bond

Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour, Government of British Columbia


Walking the talk: Applying lessons from the day
Leaders will share their insights and identify specific ideas that can be applied to their workplace. Panellists will outline their plan of action and encourage attending participants to do the same.

arthur-susan.jpg Renee Wasyluk wilson-duncan.jpg lui-sophie150.jpg

Susan Arthur, Vice President & General Manager, US Health & Life Sciences Industry, Hewlett-Packard Company

Renée Wasylyk, CEO, Troika Group

Duncan Wilson, Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility, Port Metro Vancouver

Moderator – Sophie Lui, Anchor, Global BC

Title Sponsor:

Elite Sponsor:

Supporting Sponsor:

Organizing Partners:

Women's Enterprise Centre

Media Partner:

Event Partners:

Fairmont Waterfront Vancouver
Talk Shop
St. John