McCarthy Tétrault Celebrates Inaugural Inclusion Now Awards
Toronto, JANUARY 25, 2019 – McCarthy Tétrault celebrated its first Inclusion Now Awards on January 24 with ceremonies at each of its offices across the country. The Inclusion Now Awards recognize and honour the diversity champions at our firm, including students, associates, counsel, partners and employees.
Two winners in each Canadian office were selected from a pool of 54 nominees. The ten winners were selected based on what they are doing to advance diversity and inclusion, such as:
- Providing community service that enhances opportunities for diverse people or groups;
- Advancing an inclusive workplace that shows respect for diverse backgrounds and points of view;
- Spearheading community- or client-focused diversity and inclusion initiatives; and
- Investing in career development for diverse lawyers, students, colleagues or young people.
“I am truly inspired by the passion and commitment of our people, so many of whom are helping to make our workplace and communities more welcoming. Each nominee should feel proud of their outstanding contributions to furthering diversity and inclusion,” said Dave Leonard, CEO of McCarthy Tétrault.
“Here at McCarthy Tétrault, we have a vision of a more inclusive workplace and society. We know there is more we can do to realize this vision, and we wanted to honour those among us who are rolling up their sleeves to make a difference,” said Nikki Gershbain, Senior Director, Inclusion and Community Engagement.
Meet our 2019 Inclusion Now Award winners:
Lyndsey is an exemplar of how to balance work, family and community priorities, serving as a role model for more junior women lawyers in the office. Lyndsey has been a passionate leader of several pro bono and diversity initiatives focused on helping marginalized groups. For example, Lyndsey helped develop and grow the Dare to Dream program with Pro Bono Students Canada, an innovative justice education and outreach program which aims to break down barriers and introduce Indigenous students from the Siksika First Nation to the legal community through a mock trial. Today, many of our Calgary lawyers and students volunteer with the Dare to Dream program thanks to Lyndsey’s efforts.
Marlies sets an inclusion example for all of us. She volunteers countless hours to multiple organizations and charities giving support and services to the underprivileged, homeless, and youth in our Calgary community. The list of all her past and current community volunteer initiatives is impressive. She walks the talk of being engaged in community life. She is a leader by both action and example.
Élisabeth is a true diversity champion and recognized as such within our firm, the legal community and beyond. It is difficult to capture the extent of her impact: She promotes LGBTQ rights through her work with legal associations and community organizations, contributes to women's and LGBTQ equality by speaking at events (including on a panel with Supreme Court Justice Clement Gascon), volunteers with the LGBT Legal Clinic and fundraises for local LGBTQ charities. She has also taken her advocacy global through the firm's partnership with Lawyers Without Borders Canada. Élisabeth is an inspiration and role model.
The firm's Knitting Club brings together staff, paraprofessionals and lawyers across all of our offices. These dedicated volunteers knit scarves and toques for the vulnerable clients of local organizations. The items are knit with enthusiasm and kindness, providing both warmth and a message that the McCarthy Tétrault community is caring and inclusive. While all 89 knitters should be recognized for all their time and hard work, the Montreal group is represented by Linda, who makes sure the initiative is successful in her office.
Catherine regularly participates in inclusion activities both inside and outside the firm. She organized a monthly cocktail party at Le Drague Cabaret Club to promote diversity and inclusion at McCarthy Tétrault. She also helps organize a cocktail party for the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Community Section (SOGIC) in partnership with the Canadian Bar Association. Through her continuous actions, Catherine raises the profile of LGBTQ lawyers at the Québec City office and McCarthy Tétrault in general. Catherine is a key contributor to diversity and inclusion and makes a significant impact in advancing our firm’s values.
The firm's Knitting Club brings together staff, paraprofessionals and lawyers across all of our offices. These dedicated volunteers knit scarves and toques for the vulnerable clients of local organizations. The items are knit with enthusiasm and kindness, providing both warmth and a message that the McCarthy Tétrault community is caring and inclusive. While all 89 knitters should be recognized for all their time and hard work, the Quebec City group is represented by Anne, who makes sure the initiative is successful in her office.
Atrisha is a significant leader in both our firm and the legal community. Through her community engagement, speaking opportunities and published writing, she demonstrates her passion about diversity in the sectors that drive our economy. She dedicates her time to young women, especially women of colour, inside and outside of the firm to mentor and empower them. She builds inclusive teams because she is mindful about giving fair and equal access to opportunities. She keeps these issues on the radar through her dedication and belief that we can all do better, and her voice is making a difference.
The Martin Family Initiative Indigenous Mentoring Program could not be such a huge success without the volunteer mentors across the country. These 40 dedicated mentors, staff and lawyers, have committed countless hours with enthusiasm to planning events and spending time with their Indigenous mentees, providing support, advice and fun through a wide variety of experiences. While the entire group of MFI mentors should be recognized for significant contributions to inclusion within the firm and community, the Toronto group is represented by Taralyn, who helps ensures that the program runs effectively for the Toronto team.
As equity partner and Vancouver’s Litigation Practice Group Leader, Jill actively promotes diversity and inclusion. Jill has served as one of the firm’s harassment advisors and is a member of the National Inclusion Committee. She engages directly with associates and junior partners to ensure that those with different backgrounds carve out appropriate niches for themselves at the firm and in their practices. Jill also actively promotes diversity and inclusion in the broader community as a director of The Boys and Girls Club of the South Coast of BC.
Teri has done a phenomenal job making the Martin Family Initiative Indigenous Mentorship Program a success. Not only is she passionate about ensuring that the Vancouver mentors arrange meaningful events to support the mentees, she is indispensable to the program nationally. She has designed countless forms, organized the program finances, interfaced directly with former Prime Minister Paul Martin and his staff, and served as the go-to person for operational questions from all offices. And always with a smile!
Diversity and Inclusion are core values at McCarthy Tétrault and promoting these values is a strategic priority and a business imperative. Inclusion Now is our strategy designed to ensure that the values of diversity, inclusion and social responsibility inform every aspect of who we are as a firm and what we do.
About McCarthy Tétrault
McCarthy Tétrault LLP provides a broad range of legal services, advising on large and complex assignments for Canadian and international interests. The firm has substantial presence in Canada’s major commercial centres as well as in New York City and London, UK.
Built on an integrated approach to the practice of law and delivery of innovative client services, the firm brings its legal talent, industry insight and practice experience to help clients achieve the results that are important to them.
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