Governance professionals support boards to do their jobs. A half-dozen programs in Canada educate directors. So, who supports and provides certified education to governance professional? GPC does!
  • The program equips corporate secretaries and other governance professionals to excel in delivering on their boardroom accountabilities.
  • The program is indispensable for corporate secretaries and other governance professionals who need relevant and practical skills to succeed in the boardroom.
  • The program dispels the mysteries of the boardroom by equipping participants with the practical, expert insights and skills they need to excel as governance professionals.

Guy Bridgeman, Ph.D., ICD.D

An Experienced C-suite Executive and Corporate Director
with strengths in Finance, Strategic Planning, Operations and Governance

Guy retired from EPCOR in 2020 after serving as a member of the EPCOR Executive Team for 14 years.

Guy joined EPCOR in 1995 as Director Regulatory Affairs and has served in a variety of Executive roles including SVP of Water Canada, Chief Financial Officer for EPCOR. SVP of Strategic Planning & Development, and SVP of Distribution & Transmission and Energy Services, (EPCOR’s energy retail and customer care business).

Guy played a leading role in the growth of EPCOR since its creation in 1995 including the development and acquisition of Power Purchase Arrangements in Alberta, EPCOR’s entry into energy retailing, the transformation of EPCOR’s corporate service delivery model and the recent transfer of the City of Edmonton’s Drainage Operations to EPCOR.

Guy has over 30 years of experience in the Alberta energy industry.  He played a leading role in the Province's first round of electric industry deregulation in 1996.

Guy holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Western University, is a graduate of Harvard’s Advanced Management Program and holds an ICD.D.  Guy is a frequent speaker at conferences and is a Faculty Member for the ICD Director Education Program and the Governance Professionals of Canada Governance Education Program.

Guy currently serves on four Boards:

  • University of Alberta Board of Governors - Vice Chair and Chair of Governance Committee
  • River Valley Alliance Board of Directors - Chair
  • Edmonton Chapter of the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD) Executive Committee - Member and Chair of Governance & Nominating Committee
  • Rohit Advisory Board - Member

Guy previously served on the Board of RuggedCom (RCN: TSX) an Ontario industrial communication technology firm that was founded in 2001, went public in 2007 and was taken private in 2012.  Guy also served on the Board of the Citadel Theatre in Edmonton for eight years.

Nicholas F. Cheung, CPA, CA, GPC.D, CIPP/C
Professor, School of Accounting and Financial Services at Seneca College

Nick is currently a professor with the School of Accounting and Financial Services at Seneca College. Prior to Seneca College, Nick was the Vice-President, Member Services at the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada), one of the largest accounting bodies in the world with over 200,000 members. He directed their member value strategy through a portfolio of revenue-generating publications and services to support member needs, and oversaw strategy and operations of CPA Magazine, one of Canada’s most-widely circulated business magazines. As CPA Canada’s chief privacy officer, Nick was also responsible for the management and protection of member information.

A strong advocate for financial literacy and privacy, Nick has been featured on numerous TV/radio programs and newspaper articles. He was a contributor to the award-winning A Canadian’s Guide to Money-Smart Living and a contributing author of the Canadian Privacy and Data Security Toolkit for Small & Medium Enterprises. He has also served as a member of the Advisory Board for IAPP Canada, the Canadian arm of the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP).

Previously, Nick has worked at Deloitte & Touche, ADP Investor Communications (now Broadridge), Ontario Power Generation and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board

Patrick Cormier

Patrick Cormier is the Chief Operating, Legal & Financial Officer of the Digital Identity Laboratory of Canada. In the period 2011 to early 2014, he was Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Centre for Court Technology - Centre canadien de technologie judiciaire (CCCT-CCTJ). He also currently served as Chair of the Innovation Experts Committee of DIACC - the Digital ID & Authentication Canadian Council. Mr. Cormier is a regular conference speaker on digital transformation, information management and the law. He also provided continuous legal education to judges and members of the Justice sector across the country.

John Dinner,
President, John T. Dinner Board Governance Services

For the past 15 years, John Dinner has been consulting to boards of directors across sectors and across Canada. He provides valued counsel, guidance and support to boards who want to govern well. Prior to his highly successful career as a consultant, John provided management support to the board of directors of a leading Canadian financial institution. During this time, his work was recognized with the National Award in Governance.

Sara Gelgor, BA, LLB, LLM, MBA, ICD.D
Head of Regulatory Compliance, Retail Banking and Wealth Management, HSBC Canada

Sara Gelgor is an experienced legal, compliance and governance professional.

She is Head of Regulatory Compliance, Retail Banking and Wealth Management at HSBC Canada. Sara is a member of the University of Toronto Governing Council Business Board and is the former Vice President, Enterprise Programs Compliance and Chief Privacy Officer at Scotiabank. Sara has served on a number of corporate and not-for-profit boards and is a frequent speaker at conferences. She is a past speaker at GPC’s Annual Corporate Governance Conference and will be speaking at the 2017 Conference.

Sara holds a BA from the University of Toronto, an LL.B. from Queen’s University, an LL.M. from Cambridge University, and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. Sara also holds the ICD.D designation and has completed the Osgoode Certificate in Regulatory Compliance and Legal Risk Management.

Heather Laxton,
Chief Governance Officer & Corporate Secretary, Wesdome Gold Mines Ltd.

Heather has over 20 years of corporate secretarial, corporate governance, and securities regulation experience with a focus on the mining sector in Canada, Europe, Russia and West Africa. She has served in several senior management and executive roles for companies listed on the TSX and Venture Exchanges, London - AIM and NYSE AMEX. She is currently Chief Governance Officer and Corporate Secretary with Wesdome Gold Mines Ltd., and prior to that, she was Corporate Secretary with Kirkland Lake Gold Inc., Chief Governance Officer and Corporate Secretary with Northern Gold Mining Inc., and Governance Manager and Corporate Secretary with European Goldfields Ltd. and High River Gold Mines Ltd. During her career, she has worked extensively with boards and senior management teams on both simple and complex governance matters, and has led the evaluation, design, implementation and monitoring of governance programs for several junior mining companies. She began working as a professional law clerk in multi-national law firms including Torys LLP and Smith Lyons LLP, obtained an honours diploma from the Law Clerk Program at Seneca College, and completed the Canadian Securities Course in 2000. Ms. Laxton is currently a member of the Education Committee of Governance Professionals of Canada. 

Steve Mallory, ICD.D, FCIP, CRM,
President, Directors Global Risk Consulting Inc.
Advisor, Benson Kearley IFG

Steve has close to 10 years of experience on two Federal Crown Corporation boards. He served from 2012-2017 on the Board of VIA Rail Canada, including as Chair of the Governance, Risk and Strategy Committee, and was a member of the Pension Investment Committee. Previously he served from 2008-2012 as a director with the Standards Council of Canada and served on the Audit Committee. On both boards he led board risk oversight.

He and previously served as CEO and Region Head within two of Canada’s largest insurance brokerages, and in 2007 started his own brokerage which he sold in 2018. He currently leads Directors Global Risk Consulting Inc., and is a senior advisor at Benson Kearley IFG.

Since 2011 he has served as a member of the CSA Canadian Risk Management Mirror Committee TC 262 which provides input on ISO risk and safety and other standards for Canadians.

He has completed Directors training at the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD.D) and at the Government of Canada (CSPS-Canada School of Public Service). He holds the CRM (Canadian Risk Management) and FCIP (Fellow, Chartered Insurance Professional) designations, and a BA from the University of Western Ontario.

Steve is an instructor teaching Board Risk Oversight to participants of the Institute of Corporate Directors, DEP/ICD.D program held at Rotman School of Management in Toronto and at other participating universities across Canada. He also instructs on risk to students across Canada enrolled in the Governance Professionals Canada (GPC) accredited education program, and to students participating in the Masters, Financial Accountability (MFAc) program at York University in Toronto.

He is quoted in Canadian business and risk publications, and in 2016 authored a chapter in “The Handbook of Board Governance” (2016), by Richard A. Leblanc.

In 2015 and 2018, Steve led “Team Change the World” and “Team Aqua”, two humanitarian projects involving over 30 business people, volunteers and musicians who have raised funds to drill fifteen water wells in Africa, supplying 15,000 people with fresh, clean water.

Neil Puddicombe
Associate General Counsel and Director of Bank Board Governance, Legal, Corporate & Compliance Group, BMO Financial Group

Neil Puddicombe is the Associate General Counsel and Director of Subsidiary Governance at the BMO Financial Group. Mr. Puddicombe designed the subsidiary governance framework for the Bank's Canadian, European and Asian subsidiaries. He also provides transactional support for the Bank's corporate reorganizations and proprietary M&A transactions. He has served as the Assistant Corporate Secretary for the Bank’s Audit and Conduct Review, Risk Review and Human Resources Committees. He previously supported the Bank’s Capital Markets' legal team, advising the Investment and Corporate Banking Group, the Structured Products Group and the trading floor.

Mr. Puddicombe joined the Bank after having spent five years in the Cross-Border M&A Group in the Paris and New York offices of French law firm Gide LLP. He joined Gide after having spent four years in the Business Law Group of the Toronto office of a major Canadian Law firm

Mr. Puddicombe serves as an Adjunct Professor of Business Law at Osgoode Hall Law School and is a member of the Stakeholder Consultation and Practice Group of the International Finance Corporation, World Bank Group.

Mr. Puddicombe holds an LLM (Securities) from Osgoode Hall Law School, an LLB from Windsor Law School and a BA (Hons) from Western University.

Janis Riven, BCL, LLB, MBA, FCIS, Acc.Dir
Principal, governance and compliance solutions
Adjunct Professor, John Molson School of Business

Ms. Riven, based in Montreal, has an established consulting practice on governance and compliance matters with clients encompassing publicly listed and closely held companies, as well as various types of not-for-profits, and is currently Adjunct Professor at the John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, where she teaches Corporate Governance. She is a well-known speaker both in Canada and abroad at conferences on corporate governance, and has acted as a facilitator for boards and board committees of a number of different organizations seeking to improve their governance effectiveness.

Ms. Riven was formerly Vice President, Compliance and Secretary for the Canadian and global operations of RBC Insurance. Ms. Riven is Past President of Chartered Secretaries Canada (ICSA), an international teaching organization focussed on governance. She is a member of the Quebec Bar, a Fellow of the ICSA, and currently serves on the boards of the Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments (OBSI), the Facility Association, Worldwide Magnesium Inc. and the McGill University Health Centre where she is also Chair of the Governance and Ethics Committee.

Coro Strandberg,
President, Strandberg Consulting

Coro Strandberg is President of Strandberg Consulting. She has over 25 years of experience coaching companies, governments and industry associations on strategies to embed sustainability into business. She specializes in integrating sustainability into board governance, business models, corporate strategy, human resources, community investment, procurement and finance. Her 20 years of experience as a corporate director, includes as Director and Chair of the Board of Vancity Credit Union, the largest community-based credit union in the world, where she helped establish a sustainability governance system. Coro conducted ground-breaking research for the Conference Board of Canada on the role of the Board in sustainability governance, developed the first national standard for sustainable boards, advises boards and corporate secretaries on sustainability governance and is a faculty member of the Director’s College, training directors on CSR and the role of the board. For the UN Global Compact she developed global guidance for corporate secretaries and governance committees on sustainability governance. Coro is a judge for Governance Professionals of Canada’s Excellence in Sustainability Governance award. She was recognized by Canada’s Clean50 as the top sustainability consultant in Canada in 2015 for her sustainability impacts.

Peter Wright
Association strategist, Association Hub, President, The Planning Group

Peter Wright is a career association strategist and President of The Planning Group. As a respected executive and in his current consulting practice, Peter has successfully developed and executed association and non-profit strategy with remarkable results. His practical approach to strategic and operational association business planning ensures that plans are not only embraced by association management and Boards, but also effectively implemented and measured for the tangible benefit of association members.

As the Director of Strategic Planning at Clarica, Peter Wright led the company's overall operational and strategic planning process. In an environment of complex change, his skillful facilitation of planning sessions with the senior management team was instrumental in the determination of key strategic decisions. In his time at Sun Life Financial, Peter became Vice President of Corporate Accounts, before leaving to begin his consulting and training career.

In his consulting practice, Peter Wright advises association boards and executives on all matters of strategy and association planning across a broad spectrum of trade and professional associations, societies, academies, councils and many other not-for-profit bodies. An accomplished facilitator and trainer, he works with association boards and senior leadership teams to define and develop association strategy, resolve operational issues, and overcome barriers to association performance. By providing planning expertise, process advice and facilitation, Peter helps associations overcome the planning gap. Linking strategy and action, he works with association management to foster true stretch mentality focused on association growth and value for membership.

In 20 years developing non-profit business plans with North America's greatest associations, Peter Wright has created many successful tools, models, and practices that he teaches to clients and other consultants. Peter used his strategic planning and training experience to develop The Association Strategy and Planning Toolkit on Association Hub. The Toolkit helps association consultants add value with clients and it teaches implement leading edge association planning in-house. Peter is a frequent speaker, writer and trainer wherever association executives and association members gather.

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