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Why corporate boards don’t reflect the diverse population

Published in The Globe and Mail
By Sevaun Palvetzian

CEO, CivicAction

Most skilled painters choose to harness the power of the entire colour spectrum to create compelling masterpieces. If all artists chose instead to only use one brush and one colour, our art galleries would be filled with flat, monochromatic paintings lacking vibrancy and movement. So why have we accepted for so long that leadership that represents only one dimension can create necessary depth and movement in our communities? Organizations should be jumping at the opportunity to harness the potential of diverse leadership, not dragging their feet.


So why isn’t there more diversity around the board table? The problem certainly isn’t with the pipeline. Here are a few examples of diverse leadership programs:

  • ​DiverseCity OnBoard, a program that has a board-matching service to connect qualified candidates from underrepresented groups to governance roles for non-profits and public agencies, has a database of 1,800 diverse leaders ready to serve on boards in Toronto.
  • The Broadening Opportunity through Leadership Diversity program at the Schulich School of Business enhances the capacity and boosts the impact of a class of diverse leaders annually.
  • CivicAction’s Leadership Foundation runs programs that attract amazing diverse leaders from across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area, with our DiverseCity Fellows program attracting hundreds of applications every year and our Emerging Leaders Network comprising more than 1,700 rising leaders from a wide range of backgrounds.

Read the full article here.

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