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Seneca News

Dec. 10, 2020

Four members of the Seneca community are among Canada’s Most Powerful Women named by Women’s Executive Network (WXN).

WXN, a national organization that “meaningfully propels and celebrates the advancement of women at all levels, in all sectors, and of all ages” established its Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Awards Program 18 years ago.

This year’s honourees include two Seneca graduates who are succeeding in their fields of study and two former members of the Board of Governors. 

Janine Barry

Janine Barry, a graduate of the former Internet & Electronic Commerce graduate certificate program, is a winner in the Mercedes-Benz Emerging Leaders category, recognizing women between the ages of 30 and 45 who have been targeted for successive leadership positions within their organizations.

Currently Assistant Vice-President of Digital Engagement at Manulife Bank, Ms. Barry is responsible for delivering innovative solutions like artificial intelligence insights and chatbots, and modernizing core banking systems.

“My educational experience at Seneca helped fuel my passion for delivering innovative solutions that improve digital, customer experiences through my role at Manulife Bank,” she said. “And, I am proud to be recognized by WXN among this group of exceptional women.”

Ainka Jess

Ainka Jess, a graduate of the Broadcasting – Television diploma program, is a winner in the Arts, Sports & Entertainment category, recognizing women who have shaped Canadian thinking, communication and culture.

Founder of She’sSports, Ms. Jess gives women and diverse people a larger voice in sport through digital content and events, bringing more than 5,000 people together to address gender equity and inclusion in sport.

“I’m humbled and excited to be a recipient,” she said. “My diploma at Seneca and what I learned from my professors have made a positive impact on my career and company.”

Naki Osutei

Naki Osutei, who served on Seneca’s Board of Governors from 2011 to 2017, is also a winner in the Mercedes-Benz Emerging Leaders category.

The Associate Vice-President of Social Impact at TD Bank leads a team that facilitates positive change through philanthropy, employee engagement and business. A sought-after public speaker and moderator, Ms. Osutei is also the founder and host of Presence by Naki O, a podcast about “taking and making space.”

“I’m proud to be honoured among such an accomplished group of women,” she said. “For many of us, our mere presence in our respective fields is a reflection of resilience, courage and talent. The fact that we also use our presence to drive positive change is powerful.”

Tina Tehranchian

Tina Tehranchian served on Seneca’s Board of Governors from 2007 to 2013. She is a winner of the Intact Professionals category, recognizing women who are professionals in practice and play a leadership role within their organizations.

Currently Senior Wealth Advisor at Assante Capital Management Ltd., Ms. Tehranchian has been working closely with Seneca Advancement, offering seminars to help entrepreneurs, professionals and retirees save in estate taxes by introducing philanthropy into their financial planning.

“I am deeply honoured to be recognized by such a worthy organization,” she said. “I’m a big believer in the power of women supporting women. There has never been a doubt in my mind that women can achieve whatever they set their minds to. These awards celebrate the achievements of top Canadian women leaders and inspire the future generation of Canadian women to reach new heights in their careers and continue to advocate for diversity in the workforce.” 

Learn more about the 2020 WXN Canada’s Most Powerful Women recipients

After publishing this story, we have identified a former Seneca professor who has also been recognized through this program. Rusul Alrubail, Executive Director of Parkdale Centre for Innovation, is a winner in the Manulife Science and Technology category, which recognizes women in STEM roles who are challenging the status quo for knowledge and female empowerment.