CPBC Celebrates its 34th Anniversary Gala and honours Excellence Awards to prominent individuals who have contributed in their respective fields of specialization. Maintaining its traditions CPBC event was attended by a cross section of people representing dignitaries, prominent business, and community leaders. Of course, as always large contingent from the business community, Pakistani diaspora, and distinguished guest. This year CPBC partnered and welcomed a high-powered ICT Delegation, in collaboration with the Trade Branch of the Ministry of International Trade, thus creating an opportunity to connect Canada and Pakistan to bring together each other’s excellence and diverse strengths to enhance collaborations in this sector. To support this Dr. Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation, and Science, Government of Ontario was the Guest of Honor and the keynote speaker.

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This year, the ‘CPBC Professional Excellence Award (2017) – Female’ was presented to Dr. Wendy Cukier. One of Canada’s leading experts on disruptive technologies, innovation processes, and diversity, Dr. Cukier has written extensively disruptive technology and social innovation. With more than 200 publications on technology, innovation, and management she has received more than $10 million in research funding over the last decade. Dr. Cukier is also the coauthor of the bestseller “Innovation Nation: Canadian Leadership from Java to Jurassic Park.”

She holds an MA and MBA from the University of Toronto, and a Ph.D. from the Schulich School of Business, York University. She also has an honorary doctorate from Laval University in and Concordia University.


Dr. Cukier serves on a host of boards in the private and non-profit sectors and has helped create and grow several successful startups and social ventures including Flybits, Think2Thing and Growing North that was recently selected among the top 10 finalists from 900 applicants for the Google.org ‘Impact Challenge’.

In 1999, she became the founding Director of the Diversity Institute of Ryerson University that led evidence-based projects to advance diversity and inclusion. As a Director, she worked with more than 40 organizations, spearheading large-scale projects such as DiversityLeads.

As Vice-President of Research and Innovation at Ryerson University (2011 – 2016). She transformed her unit and promoted innovation and commercialization. Under her leadership, research and partnerships expanded, driving an increase in external funding by more than 60%. She built partnerships with other academic institutions, businesses, community groups and governments around the world. She was a founder of Lifeline Syria at Ryerson University, which raised $4.7 million and mobilized 1000 volunteers to sponsor and resettle more than 400 Syrian refugees working with leading businesses such as Starbucks and entrepreneurs like Mohamad Fakih and Sajjad Ebrahim.

Her work has been widely recognized for its impact on the lives of Canadians. Dr. Cukier is a recipient of numerous awards, including the Governor General’s Meritorious Cross, one of Canada’s highest civilian honours. She was also named one of the University of Toronto’s 100 Alumni ‘Who Shaped the Century’, was selected as one of Canada’s Top 25 Women of Influence (in 2013) and selected as one of 25 Transformational Canadians by The Globe and Mail, La Presse and CTV (in 2010). More recently, she received the Black Business Professional Association’s Harry Jerome Diversity Award, and in November of 2016, became a Fellow of the Canadian Geographic Society.

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The event was attended by a number of dignitaries, prominent among them were Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Dr. Reza Moridi – MPP Minister for Research, Innovation and Science, MP Salma Zahid and MP Rob Oliphant – Co-chairs Canada Pakistan Parliamentary Friendship Group, MP Iqra Khalid – MP Mississauga, MP Lorne Coe – MPP Whitby-Oshawa, Dr. Shafiq Qaadri,Dr. Donald Bobaish, Deputy Minister, Global Affairs Canada, Chief Eric Joliffe – Chief of Police York Region, Mayor Linda Jeffery – Mayor of Brampton, Mayor Frank Scarpitti, Consul General of Sri Lanka, Mr. U L M Jauhar, Mr. Andrew Turner – Canadian Deputy High Commissioner to Pakistan, Mr. David Agnew, President SENECA, Hon. Bryon Wilfert, Chairman CPBC, Samir Dossal – President CPBC and many more.

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