Osler hosts annual women’s networking event

Amanda Heale, Dale R. Ponder

Sept. 28, 2016

Annual Women's Networking Event

Initiatives that promote the advancement of women are a cornerstone of Osler’s commitment to diversity. On September 22, 2016, Osler hosted its second annual Women’s Event, providing a meaningful networking and relationship-building opportunity for women legal professionals across the firm. Osler partners, associates and students joined alumni and clients from across the country for an evening of inspiration and conversation, which included motivational insight from keynote speaker Dr. Kimberley Amirault-Ryan, an award-winning performance consultant who works with corporate leaders and high-performance athletes to enable them to “push forward and achieve more.”

The event, presented by the Osler Women Lawyers Network (OWLN), highlights Osler’s commitment to the advancement, support and promotion of women in law and business. Amanda Heale, a partner in Osler’s Taxation Group and supporter of OWLN, provided the opening remarks, welcoming the more than 200 attendees to Osler’s Toronto office. “The firm celebrates diversity as a critical client service imperative,” said Amanda. “We recognize the simple truth that companies that attract, engage and provide a clear path to leadership for all who aspire, regardless of gender, are the companies that outperform.”

Osler’s Managing Partner, Dale Ponder, introduced the evening’s keynote speaker, and touched on Osler’s strong support of women in leadership roles. Having just returned from the International Bar Association’s 2016 Annual Conference held in Washington DC, Dale reflected on the discussions she had regarding diversity, leadership and gender percentages with legal practitioners from all over the world. The conversations reinforced the importance of diversity and Osler’s own commitment. Osler has long embraced the concept of women in the most senior leadership roles – our female leadership has been integral to shaping the firm we are today.

Kimberly delivered an inspiring presentation on the “winning traits of excellence,” providing practical tips along with anecdotes about her exciting career in working with high performers in professional and Olympic sport. She offered insight on how to set “limitless goals” by staying connected to our objectives, develop winning habits that lead to success, perform through adversity and develop a winning culture by embracing the “privilege of pressure” and focusing on team victories. “The only stat that matters is team wins,” said Kimberly, who explained negative attitudes and energy can cost us when it comes to achieving goals, especially as a team.

Osler holds a long-standing commitment to inclusion in both our policies and in practice, and was recently named one of Canada’s Best Diversity Employers in 2016. OWLN is Osler’s newest Legal Professional Resource Group, dedicated to supporting women in achieving career success. Created by and for members of the Osler community, the network encourages and supports the advancement of women through social and networking events, informal mentoring and coaching, recruitment programs and other initiatives.