TORONTO - Stephanie MacKendrick is calling it quits after more than 16 years at the helm of Canadian Women in Communications. She will be leaving the organization as president on December 1, 2012 to pursue new opportunities. She will remain involved in the organization as a Special Advisor to the Board.
The CWC also announced a number of ``transformative measures`` it`s taking to ``accelerate its position as the leading organization for women to advance and navigate their careers in Canada's media, communications, technology and social media sectors.`` Judith Campbell, Vice President, Partnerships, will assume interim responsibility for leading CWC during this period.
MacKendrick says she believes in the CWC’s mandate as strongly today as when she joined in 1996.
``CWC has changed the careers and lives of a generation of women in the media and communications sectors. I’m very proud of the legacy I will be leaving and grateful for the privilege of working with such a talented and dedicated group of colleagues, sponsors and Board members. Together we accomplished a lot,`` said MacKendrick in a statement.
“For the past year, we have been working to create a blueprint to position CWC’s future in the digital world. The CWC Centre for Strategic Digital Leadership is now established, our research is coming to fruition and we are about to launch our pilot training programs to ensure that women in our industry are equipped to lead in the digital age,” explained MacKendrick.
“With this transformation well under way, the time is right to make a change. My plan is to take a short break and then move on to new challenges as a leader, organization builder and change agent.” The changes to the CWC include:
- Establishing the CWC Technology Leadership Council, a group of senior industry leaders charged with steering the organization through digital convergence
- Introducing the CWC/Wired Woman mentorship program focused on providing mentoring relationships and professional development for women who are newcomers to Canada and women of diversity who are in transition to technology-related careers
- Appointing Joanne Stanley as Special Advisor, Strategy and Technology Sector charged with leading CWC’s operational and technology sector strategy. Stanley most recently was the founder and Executive Director of Canadian Women in Technology
- Appointing Yasmin Ranade as Executive Director, Wired Woman Initiatives and head of the CWC/Wired Woman Mentoring program. Ranade is founder and publisher of the on-line portal WhatsYourTech.ca in addition to being a well-known writer on technology issues
“This is an exciting time for CWC. We are leading the way in offering programs and activities that equip our members to excel in the age of digital transformation,” said Patricia Douey, Chair of the Board of CWC. “It is particularly important given the role women in technology and communications can play in contributing to Canada’s innovation agenda and future economic prosperity. CWC is proud to play a major role in facilitating the success of this crucial national strategy.
During MacKendrick`s tenure she established the CWC Centre for Strategic Digital Leadership, built the CWC Annual Awards Gala into a must-attend event in Ottawa, established the highly-respected CWC/Shaw Media Mentoring Program, the Career Accelerator series of executive training for media and communications leaders and launched a successful Women on Boards initiative that saw the companies in CWC’s advocacy circle achieve representation of women on their boards 2.5 times greater than the FP500 average.
“Stephanie MacKendrick has been an outstanding leader and will be missed as the face and voice of CWC. Under her direction, CWC has become the go-to women’s organization for top quality professional development, business networking and recognition. We sincerely thank Stephanie on behalf of all of our stakeholders for all she has done for the organization and wish her every success as she moves forward toward new horizons," said Douey.
CWC is Canada’s most comprehensive organization serving career women in the technology, media, content development and telecommunications sectors. The organization joined forces with Wired Woman in early 2012 and currently has 2900 members in nine chapters across Canada.