The year’s International Women’s Day theme is Break the Bias. Can you image a world free of bias, stereotypes, and discrimination? A world that is diverse, equitable, and inclusive. According to a recent McKinsey report, there is still work to be done, and although organizations have made a start on DE&I, we still have a long way to go—particularly for women, and people of colour. Nearly 70% of employees reported that their organizations prioritize DE&I, yet only 35% of employees reported that their companies had substantially followed through on their commitments. How can we hold organizations accountable so that employees have equitable access to workplace opportunities now, and in the future.
In celebration of International Women’s Day, join Canadian Club Toronto on March 8 for a conversation with Sandrine Devillard (Senior Partner, McKinsey), Rania Llewellyn (President & CEO, Laurentian Bank) & Dr. Homer Tien (President & CEO, Ornge), moderated by Cheesan Chew (COO, RBC Ventures).
**A link to the live stream will be provided closer to the event date.**
Senior Partner at McKinsey
Sandrine is a Senior Partner at McKinsey’s Montreal Office. She is the leader of the Apparel, Fashion and Luxury practice for North America.
For the past 12 years, she has been leading the Global McKinsey All In initiative, which aims at developing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the Firm.
For over 15 years, she has been initiating and leading all McKinsey research on DE&I e.g. “Women Matter”, “Women in the Workplace”, “Diversity Matters”, “The power of Parity”. She has published widely on the role of women in business.
She is a member of the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) Council, which advises on MGI’s business, economic, and technology research agenda and publications.
President and Chief Executive Officer of Laurentian Bank
Rania Llewellyn was appointed as President and Chief Executive Officer of Laurentian Bank in 2020, the first woman to head a major Canadian chartered bank. She is a first generation Canadian, having immigrated from the Middle East in her teenage years. As a transformational change leader, her top priority is building high-performance teams and creating a culture of equality, diversity and inclusion. Her focus on improving the customer experience, and driving growth and shareholder value has earned her recognition and awards, including being named one of the Top 25 Women of Influence in 2021, and receiving the Women in Payments Award for Thought Leader in 2019, in recognition of her outstanding work in modernizing the Canadian payments industry.
Ms. Llewellyn has more than 27 years of experience in the banking industry. Previous experience includes serving as an Executive Vice President at Scotiabank, where she began her career as a part-time teller. Over the years, she held a variety of progressively senior positions across a number of different groups, building up expertise in global payments, including digital and technology, corporate banking, retail banking, and commercial banking. She also launched the Bank’s multicultural banking division and served as President & CEO of Roynat Capital, a Scotiabank subsidiary which provides alternative financing for mid-sized companies through the use of senior, sub-debt, mezzanine and equity.
Ms. Llewellyn holds Bachelor of Commerce and MBA degrees from Saint Mary’s University where she focused on Finance, Marketing and International Business. In 2014, Saint Mary’s awarded her with an Honorary Doctor of Commerce. She is married to Sean Llewellyn and is the mother of two wonderful children, Sofia and Zachary.
Dr. Homer Tien
Canadian Trauma Surgeon & President and CEO of Ornge
Homer Tien is President and CEO of Ornge, Ontario’s Air Ambulance. During the pandemic, he first led the program to immunize Ontario’s remote Indigenous communities, and eventually led the entire Vaccine Distribution Task Force for the Province. He is a trauma surgeon at Sunnybrook Health Sciences and the University of Toronto. He was previously a Colonel in the Canadian Armed Forces where he served as a combat surgeon
Cheesan has built her career on not losing sight of the forest for the trees. As the Chief Operations Officer at RBC Ventures—a portfolio of ‘beyond banking’ businesses that help clients thrive and communities prosper—she is focused on making the RBC Ventures vision a reality. Cheesan leads a cross-functional team of strategic operations, analytics and marketing professionals, driving a culture of innovation grounded in empathy.
Prior to joining RBC, Cheesan co-founded and served as Chief Customer Experience Officer at Idea Couture, building it into a global innovation leader. She is a seasoned business leader and innovator with extensive experience achieving growth through market opportunity, exceptional client experiences and operational efficiency.
Cheesan earned an MBA from Western University’s Ivey Business School and a Bachelor of Science from the University of Toronto. She lives in Toronto with her family and spends her free time volunteering and traveling.