Women Business Enterprises Canada Council (WBE Canada) is pleased to announce the following appointments to the Board of Directors:
- Madeleine Baker, Director, TELUS business Solutions, and most recently Board Vice Chair, has been elected as Chair of the Board of Directors;
- Michael Pacholok, Chief Procurement Officer of the City of Toronto’s Purchasing and Materials Division was elected as Board Vice Chair and
- Laura Didyk, Vice President, Client Diversity at BDC has been elected as Board Secretary.
All three appointments are effective immediately.
Maddy Baker has had a broad and exciting career within the Procurement & Supply Chain field. She joined TELUS in 2016 after relocating to Vancouver and after a decade in Procurement, recently moved to the Business Solutions team. She currently leads activities related to Product Lifecycle Optimization including migration of all business customers from legacy products and services to TELUS PureFibre® network and third wave solutions. She recently finished her MBA as part of the TELUS program in partnership with UVic. Within the TELUS Procurement team, Maddy supported a breadth of spend categories and strategic programs. Prior to joining TELUS, she held progressive roles within GlaxoSmithKline in Europe and North America, where she ultimately held the role of Head of Procurement, United States.
She is a strong advocate for women and supplier diversity, and is proud to be Chair of the WBE Canada Board of Directors. There is a strong commitment within TELUS towards Supplier Diversity, and a recognition that our program delivers an improved and innovative customer experience by taking proactive steps to provide equal access to a supply base that reflects the diversity of where we live, work, and serve.
“Having been a board member of WBE Canada for the last few years, and involved in advocacy for supplier diversity internationally for the last decade, I’m thrilled to be appointed as the new Chair,” said Maddy. “I look forward to supporting WBE in achieving our ambitious goals to create a supply base representative of the communities in which we live, work and serve.”
Mike Pacholok has been an integral member of WBE Canada’s Board of Directors since 2015 serving on several committees, including the Executive Committee. Mike helped found the WBE Canada’s Public Service Development Committee in June 2020 to promote diversity and inclusion in supply chains in public entities across Canada. Under his leadership WBE Canada introduced a new pricing model for Corporate Membership for government and nonprofit organizations. The Public Service Development Committee merged with the Business Development Committee in September 2021 and Mike is currently a Vice-Chair of this new committee. Mike has also participated in WBE Canada events and its Annual Conferences as a panelist, workshop leader and discussion facilitator. He was also the recipient of the 2020 Supplier Diversity Leader Award. As Chief Procurement officer at the City of Toronto, Mike was key in the City’s development of their Social Procurement Program in 2016 designed to use the City’s purchasing power to address societal issues, including measures to increase diversity within the City’s supply chain by providing diverse suppliers with equitable access to competitive City procurement processes. Mike is not only a champion of supplier diversity but is always willing to help other corporate organizations with their supplier diversity initiatives with advice and feedback.
“WBE Canada is a strategic partner and champion of Supplier Diversity across Canada,” said Mike Pacholok. “In my role as Chief Procurement Officer with the City of Toronto, Supplier Diversity is an important component to the City’s Social Procurement Program. I am excited to be appointed as the new Vice-Chair of the WBE Canada board to help be part of the advocacy and promotion of Supplier Diversity with Corporate and Government members and with women-owned businesses themselves.”
Laura Didyk is Vice President, Client Diversity at BDC. Diversity and inclusion are at the core of BDC’s corporate values and business strategy. Laura leads the bank’s national approach to support Canada’s diverse entrepreneurs, including women, Black, Indigenous, LGBTQ2+, veterans, and newcomers: helping their businesses, and our economy, thrive. BDC has been a WBE Canada Corporate Member since 2018 and Laura was first elected to the Board of Directors in April 2020 serving on multiple committees, including Public Service Development Committee, Nomination Committeeand recently the Executive Committee. BDC recognizes the drive, resilience and passion of women entrepreneurs and is committed to supporting them at every point along their journey. Laura too has always been passionate about entrepreneurship and since 1994 has held progressively senior roles at BDC across many divisions of the bank. She has worked with all types of entrepreneurs, at all stages of their business, helping them access the advice and capital needed to grow and succeed.
“I am delighted to take on this important role and work alongside a passionate group of leaders, committed to helping women entrepreneurs succeed”, said Laura Didyk. “The pandemic has set back gender equality by another 35 years. Working together, we must take bold, meaningful actions to create opportunities for women to start, grow and scale their businesses.”
“I am thrilled to announce our new Board leaders. WBE Canada’s strength lies in its people. The Board Directors work diligently to ensure that WBE Canada continually upholds the strategic direction and important work that are integral to the success of all our stakeholders,” said Silvia Pencak, President WBE Canada. “Over the years, both Maddy and Mike have served in several capacities on the Board, contributing their expertise, knowledge and dedication. Laura’s extensive background in entrepreneurship and especially her advocacy for women, both professionally and personally, has had an incredible impact in everything WBE Canada works hard to achieve. Having Maddy Baker, Mike Pacholok and Laura Didyk at the helm, along with the outstanding group of Board directors can only result in the continuation of WBE Canada’s tremendous contribution to the advancement of supplier diversity across Canada and the success of Women Business Enterprises, both of which are integral to the recovery and growth of Canada’s economy.”
The WBE Canada Board is instrumental in charting the strategic direction of WBE Canada with most members actively involved in Board committees including:
- Executive Committee
- Certification Committee
- Business Development Committee
- Certification Committee
- Supplier Advisory Committee
ABOUT WBE CANADA
Women Business Enterprises Canada Council (WBE Canada) is a Canadian non-profit organization working closely with corporations and government organizations advocating for inclusion of Canadian Women Business Enterprises (WBEs) in supply chains across Canada and abroad. To ensure diversity in supply chains WBE Canada works closely with its Corporate and Government members to provide necessary training and support to help establish and develop supplier diversity initiatives. Explore our Corporate/Government membership here.
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