It is no easy feat to step into a high-profile leadership role during turbulent times and be singularly tasked with creating radical change (just ask Marissa Mayer). Often, it is a woman who is put to the test and it happens so frequently that there’s even a name for it – ‘the glass cliff’.
‘The glass cliff’ metaphor suggests that women are preferred over men for precarious leadership positions that are associated with an increased risk of criticism and failure. Twelve months ago it was Olivia Nuamah’s turn to step up to the ledge and tackle her most challenging role to date.
When Black Lives Matter staged a protest at the 2016 Pride Parade, Pride Toronto was swept up in a storm of unexpected controversy. In the aftermath, they saw the departure of most of their staff, including their Executive Director. The organization desperately needed a new leader who could successfully rebuild the organization, manage community relations, and pull together a $4 million festival in just a few months. Fortunately, the 45-year-old Toronto native was ready for the challenge and like many great leaders before her, in the face of tension she chose to see opportunity. Despite the continued controversy around banning uniformed police participation, under Olivia’s leadership Pride 2017 was a success.
Some describe her as a community builder, mother, artist and DJ; others as an accomplished executive leader, policy expert and social justice advocate. There is no debating that Olivia has built an impressive career working for the British government and as an executive director at two Toronto agencies. But beyond her unparalleled CV, the key to her success can be attributed to her authentic leadership style and fierce advocacy of ‘revealing who you really are to people.’
Join us on May 03rd for this exclusive opportunity to hear the insider account of how one of Toronto’s most fearless leaders rose to the occasion and defied expectations to steer the course.