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Gift of $500,000 to Campaign for Concordia creates first-of-its-kind centre to advance women in business

New Centre for Women Entrepreneurship and Leadership at the John Molson School of Business
May 26, 2021
By Ian Harrison, BComm 01

The Centre for Women Entrepreneurship and Leadership at the John Molson School of Business will be led by Louise Champoux-Paillé, co-director, Practice, and Ingrid Chadwick, co-director, Academic.

A new gift to the Campaign for Concordia: Next-Gen. Now is supporting research, learning and women’s leadership at the John Molson School of Business.

The founder of BFL CANADA, Barry F. Lorenzetti, is giving $500,000 to establish the Barry F. Lorenzetti Centre for Women Entrepreneurship and Leadership and to endow research grants and scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students. The centre will be led by Ingrid Chadwick, co-director, Academic, and Louise Champoux-Paillé, co-director, Practice.

The aim of the centre is to create a sustainable hub of expertise and research on women in entrepreneurship and leadership.

The centre will:

  • Develop gender-related collaborative projects pertaining to entrepreneurship, leadership, governance and family-business practice
  • Develop proposals to advance women in entrepreneurship and leadership
  • Promote partnerships between the business community and academia to bridge research and practice.

“This first-of-its-kind centre in Canada consolidates our strengths as a business school, recently recognized by the Princeton Review as one of the best for graduate entrepreneurship studies,” says Anne-Marie Croteau, dean of the John Molson School of Business. “The centre will help us attract exceptional research talent focused on equity, diversity and inclusion in business — a key pillar of our school’s strategic plan.”

WATCH: Dean Anne-Marie Croteau on Barry Lorenzetti’s generous gift.

“Entrepreneurship involving women is fundamental for creating new jobs and contributing to the social and economic growth of our society. Women promote social growth worldwide!” says Barry Lorenzetti.

“This gift further advances Concordia’s place at the forefront of innovative entrepreneurship research, especially through a gendered lens,” says Ingrid Chadwick.

Adds Louise Champoux-Paillé: “The centre will encourage knowledge exchanges in the form of mentorships, symposia and other outreach events. That knowledge will be used to encourage policy developments that support women and foster gender parity and equity.”

WATCH: Co-directors Louise Champoux-Paillé and Ingrid Chadwick on their hopes for the new Centre for Women Entrepreneurship and Leadership

Lisa Giannone, BComm 91, a Concordia business school alumna and BFL CANADA’s Regional Vice-President for Eastern Canada, says that “the centre will bring together diverse female leaders and entrepreneurs in the business community with academic leaders. This is so important because empowering women helps fuel economic development.”

“Our university is immensely grateful to Barry Lorenzetti for this generous gift to our Campaign for Concordia,” says Concordia President Graham Carr. “The new centre will further our mission to build a more equitable and inclusive society."

WATCH: BFL CANADA executive Lisa Giannone on the importance of women in leadership

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