Diversity 50™

Connecting Corporate boards with diverse, board-ready talent

After receiving feedback from past candidates, we have decided to postpone the Diversity 50 (D50) nominations and program for 2018.  We are taking the feedback very seriously, and our goal is to advance the careers of and support our D50 candidates.

The Diversity 50™ Program celebrates 50 board-ready candidates every year. Diversity 50™ supports the mandate to increase representation of such considerations as gender, visible minorities, Indigenous peoples, people with disabilities and LGBTQ+ at the boardroom of Canada’s organizations.

Diversity 50™ celebrates 50 new board-ready candidates every year at an annual reception gala. A new list of diverse men and women are added to the Diversity 50™ database annually, a resource for directors and search firms seeking board ready candidates.

Diversity 50™ Alumni

Read testimonials from past Diversity 50™ candidates on the importance of equity, diversity and inclusions on Canadian boards, and how this helps Canada's largest companies to compete globally.

Jacoline Loewen

Head of Business Development, UBS Bank (Canada)

Boards should also be reflective of investors, customers and employees. Women are investors, customers and employees and it makes good sense to make the board reflective of these key stakeholder groups. Also, research is showing diversity is better for the bottom line, as well as strengthening sustainability. Just as safety records were good indicators of management competence and a company's long term value creation, diversity is showing up as a similar metric for investors. Sure, diversity could be seen a s a "nice to do" but it is now being flagged as good for the bottom line too.

Mark Wafer

MSC OMC, Megleen Treadstone

Diversity is front of mind for all corporations and corporate boards. What is less understood is the value of including certain demographics such as those with disabilities. Despite a higher awareness of the contribution of those with disabilities, participation remains low. Boards and indeed business benefit in so many ways by including those who have different problem solving skills and therefore greater innovation but in the workplace these individuals increase operating margins and profitability by creating safer workplaces, lowering absenteeism and increasing retention. Statistics show that 53% of Canadians are directly affected by disability; they either have one or have a close family member with a disability. We can no longer afford to ignore this demographic. To achieve corporate excellence, make inclusion your overarching goal.

Rose Marie Gage

Chief Executive Officer, Ag Energy Co-operative Ltd

Does slow and steady win the race? NO! As leaders and board directors, we cannot run organizations with glacial change and deliver results. Research indicates that collective intelligence is greatly enhanced with gender diversity. Boards of Directors are just that, governors working to provide collective intelligence and seeking long term results and viability. While Corporate Canada is changing slowly, great opportunities continue for all diverse candidates to make a difference. I urge all boards to seek the best fit directors for their organizations and take the leap to outperform your competitors on a global scale. As Canadians there is much to be proud of. Together, with tapping into diverse knowledge, we can outperform and shine on the global stage.

Shahir Guindi

Co-Chair, Osler

Both the data and my personal experiences and observations show that Canadian companies are doing better in thinking about and ensuring diverse representation on their boards. The value of different perspectives on corporate decisions, from the mundane to the transformative, is more and more recognized. Although some industries and regions are doing better than others, overall, we are trending slowly in the right direction. Window dressing, however, is not sufficient. Embraced evolution is required.

Use our list of candidates to diversify your board

The Diversity 50™ lists highlight candidates who have the knowledge, skills and experience to lead in corporate Canada, but may not have the visibility or connections to get in front of hiring committees.

Download the preview profiles below.

Are you a member?  to view the full profiles.

Frequently asked questions.

Interested in becoming a Diversity 50™ Candidate

Get all your answers here.

How do I apply to become a Diversity 50™ candidate?

Simply complete an application. Applications open in March and close in June. Working committee deliberations take place over the summer, applicants are informed of their status in the fall, and celebrations take place early in the following calendar year.

What does it cost?

There is no charge to apply.

What are the eligibility requirements?

There are no specific eligibility requirements, anyone is welcome to apply, and applications are scored against a rubric and our ranked amongst their fellow applicants.

What are the benefits of being on the list?

Being named one of the Diversity 50™ provides individuals with the exposure to the boards that they might not have a connection with as well as broadening their network.

Who makes the selections?

The selections are made by our proxy committee who are the delegates of each of our sponsoring partners.

How long does the application process take?

The application is a detailed outline of your experience and could take 1-2 hours.

If you don't see an answer to your question we would be happy to chat further with you!

C-Suite analysis.

In 2017, only 22.6 percent of all FP500 board seats were held by women – an increase of one percent since 2016. Read more on CBDC’s extensive, year-over-year research on Canadian board diversity.


Senior executive roles are occupied by men


Senior executive roles are occupied by women

Frequently asked questions.

Is your organization interested in diversifying their board?

Get answers to our most asked questions.

Will you circulate our board postings to your candidates?

Yes, please send your board posting to us and we will review and circulate to the appropriate group of Diversity 50™ Alumni.

Can we contact the candidates directly?

We will make connections with both parties approval.

Can we meet the candidates in person?

Yes, if you are interested in meeting our Diversity 50™ candidates please let us know. We can arrange to have you invited to the yearly Diversity 50™ receptions.

If you don't see an answer to your question we would be happy to chat further with you!