Hello to all CIM members. This is the first of a series of articles that will come from my pen over the next year. I look forward to communicating with you as your past president, François Pelletier, has done over the past year. Thanks, François, for a job well done!
Over the past few years, the corporate world has gone through a number of changes to reflect the heightened attention to business ethics and good governance (the Sarbanes-Oxley world). CIM, in the not-for-profit world, is no different in that while we might not have the same business drivers, we are nonetheless under similar obligations in our accountability to our shareholders - our members.
A number of good governance activities were initiated during the past year to ensure we meet new standards as well as ensuring our members have the utmost confidence in our executive team and CIM Council. Our Council (in effect, our board of directors) is ultimately responsible for the performance of CIM, its societies, and branches. So it was incumbent upon us to become educated in the good governance needs of our business going forward. We invited help from Mel Gill of Synergy Associates, a professor of the elements of good governance at Queen’s University. He has pointed us in the right direction to achieve our objectives - to ensure we have good policies, practices, and systems in place.
A second outcome of our work on governance was better understanding of the roles and responsibilities of staff and Council members. To have a seat on Council carries with it a responsibility for directing the affairs of CIM. But it goes beyond that, as we want our Council members to be comfortable in the role they have and to enjoy the comraderie of their peers. Being on Council is a voluntary role and we intend to make it a positive experience for all. It’s also a leadership role, with the chance to make a difference. A position on Council means setting an example and being a role model for the leaders of the future.
Over the next year, I look forward to talking to you on a number of issues, with a focus on the sustainability of the resource industry and, in particular, CIM within the industry. We at CIM want to continue to work hard to support individual and corporate members. Working with you, we believe we will have the continuing opportunity for knowledge transfer and just being better at what we do.
Jim Popowich, CIM President