‘You couldn’t take it personally, that was just the way it was.’
In an interview with Linda Irvine, co-creator of Schulich ExecEd’s Leadership for Women program, Sheila Baird described how she remembered being proud when membership in the Women’s Financial Association she was head of reached 100 members. Today, many decades later the association has thousands of members in an industry that was once completely dominated by men.
Baird is Chief Compliance Officer and Chief Investment Officer of Kimmelman & Baird LLC and started her career in the 1950s, fresh out of university where she was one of only two women in the Commerce & Finance program along with 147 men. By the second year, Baird and her only woman classmate were among the 49 people still enrolled. At the end of her third year, she was offered a job at Manufacturers Life Insurance Company’s investment research department. She has spent her life calmly advancing her career in the Investment field and eventually became a partner in her own firm managing more than a billion dollars in assets.
In this half-hour audio interview, Irvine talks to Baird about her career path and tips for women looking to succeed as leaders. Her story includes being refused entry into a men-only club despite being invited to attend and changing jobs several times to advance her career.
The Leadership for Women: Practical Strategies for Success program (starting Sept.29, 2021) is a six-session course that will help participants identify the obstacles in their own workplace and increase their knowledge, skills and understanding of what it takes to be successful as a women leader. For more information and to register, visit the program web page.