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Book Synopsis: Martha Piper and Indira Samarasekera had vastly different career paths on their way to becoming the first (and so far only) female presidents of two of Canada’s largest and most respected research universities and directors of some of the nation’s largest market cap companies, but what they had in common was their gender, their willingness to take risks when leadership opportunities presented themselves, and a work ethic second to none. It was not always easy, pretty, or fair, but it was always the result of choosing to answer the call to lead. A call that in the authors’ view, too many women still turn away from.
In Nerve: Lessons on Leadership from Two Women Who Went First, Piper and Samarasekera share their personal and professional stories, offering guidance for women leaders of every age and at every stage of their career. Nerve is a must-read for any woman who is leading today, considering leading, or thinking about life after leading.
About Our Speakers: Indira Samarasekera served as President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Alberta, and Vice-President of Research and Innovation at the University of British Columbia. She is an advisor for Bennett Jones LLP, a member of the Board of Directors of Magna International, TC Energy, and Stelco, a member of the Trilateral Commission, and a former director of Scotiabank. Dr. Samarasekera is recognized for her groundbreaking work on process engineering of materials, especially steel, and has consulted for the industry worldwide. An Officer of the Order of Canada and a Foreign Associate of the National Academy of Engineering in the U.S., she is the recipient of eight honorary degrees.
Martha Piper was the first woman to serve as President of the University of British Columbia. She has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Bank of Montreal, Shoppers Drug Mart, TransAlta Corporation, CARE Canada, and the Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education. The recipient of 17 honorary degrees, Dr. Piper is known for her research in movement disorders in children and is an Officer of the Order of Canada, a member of the Order of British Columbia, and an Honorary Fellow of Merton College, Oxford University. She lives with her husband, William Piper, in Vancouver.
Series Host: Rotman Initiative for Women in Business
Series Sponsor: Air Canada
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