A special IWD message from Tabatha Bull

Small Business Canada

The first official International Women’s Day (IWD) was in 1911 over a century ago. A report from the World Economic Forum indicates we have another century to go until we have global gender equity. While we celebrate IWD, we all have a role to play in breaking the bias. 

Focus on self-growth and support those around you in their efforts to become better versions of themselves. In leadership, emulate respect, look for balance and equity, and empower women to amplify their voices. Celebrate successes.

I often reflect on my role as an Indigenous woman leading a national organization. I was raised to believe I could do and be anything I wanted based on hard work alone. Unfortunately, my experience contradicts that belief. However, my experience is also what drives me to advocate for change. I choose to challenge more often, to use my platform to speak up against stereotypes, to provoke thought and push for change where I am able. I encourage you to do the same.

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Tabatha Bull

President and CEO Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business

Tabatha is Anishinaabe, a proud member of Nipissing First Nation. As CCAB’s president and CEO she is committed to help rebuild and strengthen the path towards reconciliation and a prosperous Indigenous economy to benefit all Canadians. 

Serving the Indigenous community through CCAB’s commitment to support the Indigenous economy, Tabatha works with government, notably through her role with the federal government’s recent COVID-19 Supply Council, and through her work with various organizations, committees, and boards on Indigenous economic development. 

An electrical engineer, Tabatha informs Canada’s energy sector by participating on many boards including Ontario’s electricity system operator IESO, the Positive Energy Advisory Council, the MARS Energy Advisory Council, and the C.D. Howe Institute’s Energy Policy program.

As an appointee of the Catalyst CEO advisory board in Canada, Tabatha collaborates with some of the world’s most powerful CEOs and leading companies to help build workplaces that work for women. Also, a member of Queen’s University Circle of Advisors, Centennial College’s Indigenous Circle, and a member of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce board, Tabatha is dedicated to diversity and removing systematic barriers to improve opportunities and business competitiveness across all industry sectors.

Tabatha is also an appointee of CN’s inaugural Indigenous Advisory Council. The Council is comprised of accomplished and respected representatives of Canada’s First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities of every province and territory. Their mandate is to advise CN’s Board and company President and Chief Executive Officer on issues relevant to CN’s relationship with the more than 200 Indigenous communities in which CN operates. 

Tabatha has appeared on numerous occasions in the Senate and House of the Parliament of Canada, discussing, advocating, and advising on various Indigenous business issues. She was recommended to the Deputy Minister of International Trade at Global Affairs Canada to join the Trade Advisory Council where she is one of a 12-member panel. The Council’s overarching mandate is to advise on issues related to export promotion, investment attraction, trade policy and negotiations, and international science, technology and innovation.

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