Canadian Women in Communications and Technology (WCT)
Originating in October 1991 as Canadian Women in Radio and Television (CWRT), the organization changed its name in the mid '90s to Canadian Women in Communications (CWC), in response to the growing need to support and raise the profile of women in associated industries. (Its name would change again in 2014: see below).
CWC became the leader in assisting women from the communications industry with advancement. A multifaceted and inclusive organization, CWC supported not only women in radio and television, and telecommunications, but also women in print media, new media and the IT sector.
CWC was a national, bilingual organization, with nine chapters across Canada, and 2900 members, that helped women prepare to meet the challenges of the current business environment. Supported by generous sponsorship from an array of companies in the communications sector, CWC offered strategic networking events and targeted professional development programs to assist women with maximizing their career potential.
On October 10th 2012, after more than 16 years building Canadian Women in Communications into a widely respected national organization, CWC President Stephanie MacKendrick announced that she would be leaving as of December 1, 2012 to pursue new opportunities. She would remain involved in the organization as a Special Advisor to the Board.
During her tenure, CWC established the CWC Centre for Strategic Digital Leadership, built the CWC Annual Awards Gala into a major event in Ottawa, established the highly-respected CWC/Shaw Media Mentoring Program and 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.
It was also announced that on Nancy's departure, Judith Campbell, Vice President, Partnerships, would assume interim responsibility for leading CWC. Judith was a veteran senior member of the CWC team, having served for more than six years from 2002 to 2007 and from 2011 to 2012.
On February 12th 2014, Canadian Women in Communications (CWC) announced that it had officially become Canadian Women in Communications and Technology (WCT). The new name and brand were intended to reflect an enlarged mandate to help bridge gaps so women are better equipped to be successful participants and leaders in Canada's burgeoning digital economy.
"It's a new day for members of Canada's leading organization for professional women," said Janice McDonald, Chair of the WCT Board of Directors. "As Canadian Women in Communications and Technology, we'll build even stronger links between the communications and technology sectors. We'll leverage our partnerships with other professional associations, government departments and major industry sponsors to help women advance in the digital age".
The timing of this announcement coincided with a number of new additions to WCT's Board of Directors at its Annual General Meeting held February 12, 2014. The backgrounds and professional affiliations of many of these leaders reflected Canadian Women in Communications and Technology's expansion and important role in positioning women in Canada for better representation and success in the digital economy.
New board members include Namir Anani, President & CEO, Information Communications Technology Council; Nancy Chase, Partner, KPMG Advisory Services; Jackie King, General Manager, Hill & Knowlton; Dee-Ann Lama, Vice President, Marketing, Xerox; Sandy McIntosh, Vice President, TELUS Customer Solutions Human Resources; Leanne Park, Senior Director, Professional Services and Sales, Cogeco Cable; Shirley Anne Scharf, Vice President, Applications & Performance, Communications Research Centre; Jane Todd, CFO, Densigraphix Inc., Toronto, Ontario.