Toronto police chief, Bill Blair, will be presented with this year’s Canadian Diversity Leadership Award at a luncheon tomorrow.
Presented by the Diversity Business Network (DBN), the award recognizes an individual or organization that is championing diversity.
“Chief Blair has set a benchmark for diversity achievement,” said DBN founding president, Courtney Betty. “The service and commitment infused within the Toronto Police Service in cultural diversity and representation reflects Blair’s overall contribution in building a police force that will grow with this world-class city.
“There have been two Black deputy chiefs during his tenure and diversity is reflected in every sphere of the service.
“He has an outstanding record of achievement that continues to be the foundation for organizational success in reducing violence and crime across the city and helping communities to mobilize their resources to improve the quality of life in their neighbourhood.”
Last year, Blair made the list of men influencing and championing diversity in Canada when he was included in the Women of Influence inaugural magazine celebrating the Top 25 Women of Influence in Canada.
Blair will receive the award prior to the Canadian Supplier Diversity Conference at Exhibition Place’s Allstream Centre. Presented by Royal Bank of Canada, the conference offers an interactive and engaging forum featuring presentations by global leaders from Canada, the United States and England.
The theme of this year’s event is “Building our Economic Strength”.
“This event brings together corporations – both large and small – and diverse-owned businesses which are all looking to find ways to grow their businesses,” said Betty. “The plenary sessions will be followed by break-out sessions that will provide an in-depth understanding of the key strategic benefits of supplier diversity and how to position your company for the millions of dollars of procurement opportunities.”
The keynote speaker is Stephen Frost, the head of diversity for the London 2012 Olympics.
“There is nearly $300 million in goods and services that will be needed to successfully stage the Pan Am/Parapan Games here in 2015 and we want to ensure that our diverse suppliers get some of these opportunities,” Betty added. “Games organizers have said individuals from our community will get some of these contracts, but we are yet to see that happen.”
The conference runs from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
By RON FANFAIR