Wednesday, November 25, 2009

SIO AGM: Building Understanding Fostering Growth

The Annual General Meeting of the Social Investment Organization took place this morning at the Hyatt Regency in Toronto. Gary Hawton ably facilitated the meeting, in place of Board Chair Cheryl Crowe, who was unable to attend due to illness.

Congratulations go out to Sarah Thomson, Membership and Communications co-ordinator for an outstanding revamp of the Annual Report.

Eugene Ellmen, Executive Director, outlined the SIO’s activities. Foundational programs are intended to build membership capacity and increase the social capital of the organization. These include the communications strategy, and the biannual SRI Review. In Progress activities are highly important to the organization, but are not, or perhaps not yet, core. Initiatives in this category are the new advisor training program, building relationships with the academic sector and bolstering the SIO’s French language services. Finally, Aspirational programming is what is on the SIO wish list. Primary activities here include an increase in capacity that would allow the SIO to better address public policy issues, and building relationships with the foundations community and the pension sector.

In recognition of Eugene’s 10 years with the SIO, the Board presented him with a gift (fair trade, of course) and warm wishes.

The SIO has changed it’s year end from June 30th to December 31st to align it’s planning year with the budgeting time frame of many members. It will also allow the SIO to hold future AGMs along with the conference in June.

Changes presented by the Board Development Committee were passed, as part of a process of governance review, resulting in an opening up of nominations and elections. Work will continue in this area in the next Board year.

The new Board of the SIO is as follows:
Renee Arnold, Aberdeen Asset Management, Chicago
Jordan Berger, Mercer, Toronto
Cheryl Crowe, Assiniboine Credit Union, Winnipeg
Jennifer Coulson, Northwest and Ethical Investments, Vancouver
Dermot Foley, Inhance Investment Management/VanCity, Vancouver
Helene Gagne, Federation des Caisses Desjardins, Montreal
Gary Hawton, Meritas Mutual Funds, Kitchener
Doug McGee, Alterna Savings, Toronto
Christina McLeod, Genus Capital Management, Vancouver
Debra Sisti, RiskMetrics Group, Toronto
Stephen Whipp, Manulife Securities, Victoria
Don Wilson, Freedom 55 Financial, Toronto

“One of the reasons that SRI has prevailed through the economic and financial crisis of 2008 is the belief by SRI clients that socially responsible investment is good for both investment portfolios and for the planet....SIO is committed to working on behalf of the socially responsible investment industry in Canada to expand its reach to new stakeholders and new clients in the years to come.”

Check back soon for links to the 2009 Annual Report and new board

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