2017 Zenith Award Winners

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Elizabeth Watson, WATSON Advisors Inc.

Elizabeth Watson has provided exceptional advocacy for women in corporate leadership, both by recruiting women to boards and supporting women in board and executive positions. In 2001, after a 20-year career in private practice, Elizabeth was hired to oversee appointments to all of BC’s Crown corporations. In that role, she instituted merit-based recruitment to hire exceptional women to BC public-sector boards, achieving 40 per cent female directors. Many women profiled during Liz’s tenure went on to serve in key leadership positions across Canada. Returning to the private sector in 2005, she established a boutique executive search firm known for providing practical, expert advice to boards of directors. Her commitment to getting women to the board table has resulted in enormous positive change for hundreds of women. Liz was named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in 2012.

Katy Waugh, The Bank of Nova Scotia

Katy Waugh is responsible for leading a 75-person legal department at Scotiabank and is currently a member of numerous senior management committees. Katy has been involved in programming for women and diverse team members, creating opportunity to initiate real change. While part of the risk-management division, she was co-chair of the GRM advancement of women committee and is currently involved in the bank’s gender equity committee. The Advancement of Women risk committee focused on building a strong feeder pool of junior women to succeed into more senior roles, understanding their perspectives and providing relevant training. She has mentored and helped ensure opportunities for women to strengthen their professional skills. Katy is currently a United Way Law Cabinet co-chair and has been a supporter and previous participant in Pathways to Education and Camp Oochigeas.

Caroline Wawzonek, Dragon Toner LLP

Caroline Wawzonek is a leader and advocate for women in the legal profession and in the north. Caroline worked pro bono for women in a number of areas including emergency protection orders. She was the president of the Law Society of the Northwest Territories in 2011-12 and CBA NT Criminal Section chair for 2009 to 2016. She is chair of the NWT Legal Aid Commission and the CBA rep on the Law Society of the Northwest Territories Access to Justice Committee. She also sat on the steering committees developing NWT’s Domestic Violence Treatment Option Court, and Wellness court. In 2016, in response to extreme rates of violence against women in the North, Caroline drafted a submission to the Legislative Assembly suggesting an eligibility restriction for political candidates convicted of domestic violence.

Tina Woodside, Gowling WLG

Over her 25-plus years at Gowling WLG, Tina Woodside has served in a great number of senior leadership positions. In her current role as the firm’s first female overall managing partner for internal business, Tina is primarily responsible for the firm’s operations, including service delivery, performance and corporate culture. As a member of the executive committee, she is the highest-ranking female in the firm. She has long been an advocate for women’s professional advancement in a traditionally male-dominated profession. More than 15 years ago, she founded the Women’s Initiative Group (WIG), which is committed to helping women lawyers at the firm develop professionally. Today, WIG’s mission continues through Gowling WLG Realizing Opportunities for Women (GROW). Tina is an elected Fellow of the American Bar Association.