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New recognition for Canada’s top women in cybersecurity

TORONTO – A new recognition initiative for women in Canada who have made a significant contribution to the cybersecurity industry is being launched with a call for nominations on International Women’s Day on March 8, 2020.

The idea was developed by the Women in Security & Resilience Alliance (WISECRA) in collaboration with IT World Canada (ITWC) to raise awareness about the invaluable role that women play in the cybersecurity sector. They also want to put the field higher on the radar as a career choice for young women. 

“Less than 10 per cent of cybersecurity jobs in Canada are held by women,” said Fawn Annan, President and CEO of ITWC. “We could go a long way toward addressing the skills shortage in IT security by encouraging more women to enter the profession.”

A detailed call for nominations will be issued on March 8, 2020. Once nominations close in May, judges will review them and select  women for the honoree list.  

“We’re looking for women who have advanced the industry and shaped the path for future generations,” said Bonnie Butlin, the founder and international coordinator of WISECRA, a global network of female cybersecurity professionals. “We see them as the role models who will be instrumental in building the future.”

Butlin, who has been called “Canada’s First Lady of Security” will co-chair the initiative along with Annan, a recognized leader, and entrepreneur in the IT industry.

The organizing committee is pleased to announce the following cybersecurity heavyweights who have already committed to being judges for the awards program:

  • Le Ha Hang, VP Global Security, CGI
  • Francoise Gagnon, CEO of ADGA Group Consultants Inc.
  • Rima Aristocrat, President & CEO, Willis College
  • Ali A. Ghorbani, Director, Canadian Institute for Cybersecurity
  • Sharon Polsky, President & CEO, Privacy & Access Council
  • Robert Beggs, CEO, DigitalDefence 
  • Suzie Smibert, CISO, Finning International
  • Franca Palazzo, Executive Director, Internet Society – Canadian Chapter
  • Terry Cutler, Founder & CEO, Cyology Labs Inc. 
  • Namir Anani, President and CEO at Information and Communications Technology Council

Look for nomination details to be released shortly.

About WISECRA:  

The Women in Security & Resilience Alliance is a global network that brings women in security and resilience roles together to share ideas and best practices. WISECRA is a sub-network of the Security Partners’ Forum. 

For more information, contact:

Bonnie Butlin, International Coordinator, Women in Security & Resilience Alliance, Email: [email protected], Phone: 613-266-8048

Steve Proctor, VP Communications and Marketing, ITWC,  Email [email protected] Phone:  416-578-5014

About ITWC

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