United Way's President Lucy Miller with Agrium's Leslie O'Donoghue

The pivotal role of Calgary’s social change leaders

United Way's President Lucy Miller with Agrium's Leslie O'Donoghue

On December 3, United Way’s President Lucy Miller was named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women by the Women’s Executive Network. As a four-time winner and past Campaign Co-Chair, we asked Leslie O’Donoghue to talk about the importance of awards like this and the role social change leaders play across our country.  Here’s what she had to say.

How do awards like this show the power of women, both in our city and nationally?

Women are change makers. All across Canada we’re playing pivotal roles in shaping how our communities look and function, today and in the future.

Additionally, awards like this allow us to recognize role models for the next generation of powerful women.  Hopefully this inspires the younger generation to continue to challenge themselves and give back to the community.

Why do you think Lucy is deserving of this award?

Lucy has worked so hard to better the lives of others. Be it as United Way’s President or her work with schools and children across the country, she has dedicated her life to improving the lives of others and this award is recognition and validation for all the work she has put into her community.

Why do you think social change leaders are being recognized on this scale?

Social change leaders are also transformational leader .  Transformational leaders are optimistic and excited about their organization’s goals and inspire others to be just as enthusiastic. This enthusiasm, whether it is for a charity or a corporation, translates into a strong and engaged workforce which is fundamental to the success of any organization.

By recognizing social change leaders such as Lucy, the Women’s Executive Network is saying they see the importance of these leaders in shaping our communities. Our cities would look very different without these strong, female leaders working for their corporations, non-profits and their communities.


Leslie O'Donoghue

Leslie O’Donoghue is EVP Corporate Development and Strategy, and Chief Risk Officer at Agrium Inc. She has been named to the Top 100 list four times and was United Way’s Campaign Co-Chair in 2012.