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Desjardins Group modernizes governance

Press Release

Changes to the composition of the Board of Directors and the Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct

Montreal, May 7, 2019 — At Desjardins Group’s Annual General Meeting on March 30, the caisse delegates voted to elect the members of the Desjardins Group Board of Directors and Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct. This democratic process follows through on the priorities adopted by the Congress of Elected Officers, whose focus was modernizing the organization’s governance by expanding the electoral college, introducing an enriched group profile and adding two external director positions, a first in the history of Desjardins. The criteria established in the group profile are designed to ensure the composition of the Board of Directors and the Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct continues to evolve based on the needs of the organization and the expectations of the regulatory authorities while ensuring proper membership representation. Desjardins aims to achieve gender parity by 2024.

The delegates elected five people to the Desjardins Group Board of Directors, whose diverse profiles and skills they believe will contribute to the enhanced group profile. Two members were re-elected and three were new to the Board: Kateri C. Jourdain, from the First Nations communities–another first in the organization’s history–Lisa Baillargeon and Marie-Eve Tremblay.

The two external members–Johanne Charbonneau and Marie-Josée Lamothe, appointed on April 18–are not from Desjardins Group; they don’t sit on a caisse board of directors or work as caisse general managers. They were elected to meet the specific needs defined by the Board of Directors. With their solid pan-Canadian and international experience, they will complement and enhance the Board’s group skills.

“I’m proud of the evolution of Desjardins Group’s governance, which confirms that we’re a modern organization with the ability to adapt to our environment while remaining true to our cooperative nature. The new rules for electing members to our Board of Directors and Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct allow us to not only draw on the experience and expertise of our re-elected officers, but also bring in new talent from our caisse boards of directors or from different areas entirely thanks to the addition of two external director positions,” said Desjardins Group President and CEO Guy Cormier.

“With these five new directors, the Desjardins Group Board of Directors is another step closer to achieving gender parity, which our Management Committee and our Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct have already done. In an era that recognizes how greater diversity improves business performance, Desjardins has, in just one year, taken a giant leap forward for the benefit of our members and clients,” he added.

The Board of Directors will now be made up of 21 members–7 women and 14 men–and 1 member delegate. Gender parity will be achieved gradually as the current terms of office are completed. Katia Cyr was newly elected to the Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct, which now has two women out of a total of five members.

Below is a brief description of those who have been re-elected, elected and appointed to the Desjardins Group Board of Directors and Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct for 2019:

Re-elected directors

Louis Babineau, PhD in business administration (IT systems and project management

Chair of the Board of Caisse Desjardins de Sainte-Foy

Mr. Babineau is a professor at the UQAR’s school of management.

Stéphane Trottier

Director at Caisse populaire Desjardins de Trillium and President of the Fédération des caisses de l’Ontario

Mr. Trottier is an entrepreneur in occupational ergonomics.

New directors

Lisa Baillargeon, CPA

Chair of the Board of Caisse Desjardins Charles-LeMoyne

Ms. Baillargeon is a professor and associate dean of academic affairs at ESG UQAM.

Kateri C. Jourdain

Director at Caisse Desjardins de Sept-Îles

Ms. Jourdain is the general manager of a real estate company and specializes in communications and public relations. She is a member of the Innu community.

Marie-Eve Tremblay, CRHA

Chair of the Board of Caisse Desjardins du Quartier-Latin

Ms. Tremblay is the general manager of a firm specializing in organizational and sustainable development.

Johanne Charbonneau, CPA, C. Dir. (external)

Ms. Charbonneau is a corporate director and was CFO of CBC/Radio-Canada from 2001 to 2009, of the International Development Research Centre from 1998 to 2001 and of the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation from 1983 to 1998. She was a board member in the credit union network in Ontario and British Columbia.

Marie-Josée Lamothe (external)

Ms. Lamothe is the president of Tandem International, whose mission is to support businesses with the digital development of their business model. Over the past four years, she was managing director at Google Canada and prior to that, a senior manager with L’Oréal. She is a professor of management at McGill University and a corporate director.

New member of the Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct

Katia Cyr

Director at Caisse Desjardins du Nord de Sherbrooke

Ms. Cyr is an entrepreneur and owns a number of restaurants. She has a background in public relations and advertising.

Go to to see the full list of members of the Desjardins Group Board of Directors and the Board of Ethics and Professional Conduct.

For journalists only: Chantal Corbeil



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