Wood Business

Virtual Event
Women in Forestry 2022
March 8, 2022 at 11:00am EST

Free to Grow in Forestry – From Action to Traction

  • Kelly Cooper, Founder and President, Centre for Social Intelligence
  • Doug Reid, Vice President of the Canadian Institute of Forestry
The Centre for Social Intelligence in partnership with the Canadian Institute of Forestry-Institut du forestier, is leading a sector-wide initiative to further promote an equitable workplace culture in the forest sector. Moving into phase two, the Free to Grow in Forestry initiative is shifting its focus from national to regional, engaging executives in the forest sector and along the supply chain to help create an inclusive workplace culture where everyone feels they belong. 

Kelly Cooper
Kelly Cooper is the Founder and President of the Centre for Social Intelligence (CSI) and a recipient of the Women of Inspiration 2021 Awards finalist. Ms. Cooper guides leaders and change agents to create a diversity and inclusion (D&I) transformation within their organizations. After providing a thorough understanding of the value proposition of D&I, she then guides leaders to develop a D&I strategy, including data analysis, skills and development training, as well as communication campaigns. Her message is clear – gender equality is an everybody’s issue – not a woman’s issue. Engaging men in a positive way by showing the benefits to them is key to affecting sustainable change.

Ms. Cooper has led the development of the Women in Mining Canada’s National Action Plan and is currently spearheading another 3-year comprehensive national action plan in the forest sector called “Free to Grow in Forestry”. For more information about this initiative go to: www.freetogrowinforetry.ca. She is the host of the Free to Grow in Forestry Podcast series that launched in May 2021. She is the gender expert for the Gender Equity Task Force of the International Union of Forest Research Organization (IUFRO) that is looking at best practices from around the world on gender and forestry. She led the Canadian Case Study that was published for this initiative.

Ms. Cooper has recently authored a book entitled “Lead the Change – The Competitive Advantage of Gender Diversity and Inclusion”. It targets decision makers to explain the value proposition and provides a blueprint on how to take action. She has been cited in various national media articles and sought out as a highly respected guest on many international podcasts and is well respected for her thought leadership on this topic. http://bit.ly/CSI-KellyCooper-MediaKit. She has also recently written several influential reports entitled Gender Diversity & Inclusion – A Plan to Eliminate Resistance; Inclusive Leadership – Creating a Culture of Empowerment, Accountability and Belonging; and Getting into Team – Leveraging Power & Privilege – An Allies Toolkit. Online training has been developed on each of these topics as well. For more information, please go to: www.centreforsocialintelligence.ca.
Ms. Cooper believes that addressing diversity and inclusion on a sector wide basis is an effective means of achieving a sustainable shift in the workplace culture. She believes that by proving this shift can happen in one of the most male-dominated sectors, that it demonstrates it can happen in all sectors. Other countries are now seeking Ms. Cooper to champion similar initiatives.

Ms. Cooper has been a guest speaker at various international conferences aimed at increasing women in senior executive roles and in technical positions in the natural resource sectors including the International Women’s Day events, World Bank, Globe, Canadian federal government and sector association conferences. Over her 25-year career, Ms. Cooper has worked in the USA, Asia, Africa, Latin America, and Europe on various sustainable development projects including both environmental issues as well as D&I.

Ms. Cooper holds an M.A. in International Environment, Development and Policy from the University of Sussex, UK, and an Honours BSc. from the University of Toronto; and has certifications in GBA+, EQ-i 2.0 and ProSci change management (ADKAR model).

Douglas Reid
Douglas Reid is the Vice President of the Canadian Institute of Forestry, the voice of forest practitioners, and is committed to providing national leadership in forestry and forest stewardship, while promoting competency among forest practitioners and fostering public awareness of Canadian and international forestry issues. Doug works as a research scientist for the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development Mines and Natural Resources leading the Boreal Silviculture Program at the Centre for Northern Forest Ecosystem Research in Thunder Bay. His research work has covered a broad range of topics from tree physiology to caribou habitat interactions, and currently focuses on remote sensing approaches to monitoring regeneration and silviculture.