MONTREAL - October 8, 2020 - For his achievements and tireless efforts to promote diversity and inclusion at Desjardins Group, Guy Cormier has been named a 2020 Catalyst Honours Champion in the company/firm leader category, along with three other Canadian CEOs. These champions were celebrated during Catalyst Canada's annual conference, held from October 6 to 8.
"I'm very proud to accept this prize on behalf of all of our employees and directors, on behalf of all the men and women of Desjardins," said Guy Cormier, President and CEO.
Mr. Cormier is responsible for launching the organization's first diversity and inclusion plan. This plan was developed to help the organization become more representative of the communities it serves, and to foster an inclusive work environment in which everyone's talents can thrive. Specifically, a number of initiatives are underway to bring more women into leadership positions, and women are now a majority on the Desjardins Group management committee. The organization has also built a network of diversity and inclusion ambassadors who are responsible for various initiatives, including workshops on unconscious bias.
Guy Cormier has made gender parity a signature issue
"Our board of directors and management committee have set a target: to achieve gender parity by 2024, at every level of the organization," said Mr. Cormier. "It's an ambitious goal, but I'm confident that we can make it happen, for two reasons. First, because all of our senior managers strongly believe in this project. And second because we've put a number of monitoring mechanisms in place."
When the award winners were announced in July, Catalyst Canada stated that, "Guy Cormier's visionary and unwavering efforts to foster inclusive workplaces make him a role model for business leaders everywhere."
During his closing speech at the conference, Guy Cormier invited his male colleagues to join the gender parity movement and begin working toward a better balance between men and women. "I encourage you to highlight the qualities and achievements of the women around you and to be a strong ally who supports their professional development and advancement," he said. "It's up to all of us to do what's best today to make us all, and our communities, richer."