Tonight I will go to sleep feeling a little more optimistic about the progress being made towards gender equality. Why? Well, it certainly doesn't have anything to do with the US presidential election (sweet mercy, what a nightmare) but, it did come from another unlikely source: the finance sector.
This morning I attended an event with the President and CEO of CIBC (one of the Big Five banks in Canada) and the Chairman of the Board at Bloomberg (in NYC). I have seen a great many well-meaning men (and women) get up in front of a crowd and embarrass themselves while actually damaging the cause by being either completely uneducated or inarticulate. But these guys. These guys were the real deal.
Not only did they profess these gems:
But they echoed the sentiment of many women over the years who stress that we are "in a race without a finish line." There may not be a finish line, but there must be targets and aspirations and possibly, yes, quotas. Victor Dodig got particularly animated when the moderator asked about quotas and he said, emphatically:
And a special shout out to an impressive turnout by my male colleagues this morning. I saw you and I thank you for being there - it's going to take men and women and persistence. But there has never been a better time to be born a woman and I am hopeful that this will be true for every new generation. Let's go.