Bank of Canada Boosts Targets for Women, Minorities in Top Roles

The Bank of Canada is undertaking a diversity push that will see it significantly increase the representation of women and visible minorities in senior management over the next decade.

In a notice to staff this month, the Ottawa-based central bank unveiled plans to double the number of senior officers who are visible minorities by 2030, and to raise the number of women in those roles by 45% over the same period. Louise Egan, a spokeswoman at the bank, confirmed the contents of the notice.

Governor Tiff Macklem and the Executive Council are “committed to the ideal that a more diverse and inclusive Bank of Canada is crucial to reflect the society we serve, and that it strengthens us as an organization,” Egan said in an email. “They have made clear that our senior leadership team needs to reflect that diversity.”

The move, if successful, would bring the number of visible minority senior officers to 14 from seven, and the number of female senior officers to 32 from 22.

There are currently 76 senior officers, including members of Governing Council, the group of policy makers responsible for setting interest rates, as well as the chief operating officer, advisers, managing directors and other senior management in various departments.

That would mean 18% of senior management would be visible minorities and 42% would be women, from 9% and 29% now, according to Bloomberg calculations.

The move comes amid a nationwide focus on diversity, spearheaded by Prime MinisterJustin Trudeau, whose Liberal government unveiled agender balanced cabinet shortly after taking power in 2015. Last month, the government introduced a “diversity challenge” as part of an effort to increase the share of women and minority groups in corporate leadership positions.

There’s currently only one woman on the central bank’s six-member Governing Council, though that spot will soon be vacant. Senior Deputy Governor Carolyn Wilkins is stepping down on Dec. 9, before the end of her seven-year term in May, capping two decades of work at the institution.

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