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Women of Influence Luncheon Series – Lisa LaFlamme

“Help other women. Help younger women. Other women are not a threat; they are the future.”

On March 23rd, 2016, we welcomed 500 guests to the premiere of the Women of Influence Luncheon Series in Toronto. We turned the spotlight on Lisa LaFlamme, who sat down with Marcia MacMillan for an intimate fireside chat to discuss her journey to becoming Canada’s lead news anchor and the changing landscape of media and journalism.

What we learned:

  • How did Lisa move from small town radio copywriter to become the Chief Anchor of CTV News? She followed the advice of her father, who always said to “keep your head down, and work hard.”
  • What did Lisa learn from her predecessor, Lloyd Robertson? “He has been an incredible mentor. His message his always been the same: stay focused.”
  • When asked who she considers a mentor, Lisa listed Jane Austen, Diane Sawyer, her teachers, parents, colleagues, and Lloyd of course.
  • For Lisa, the most memorable part of her job, is seeing change in countries when you never thought or dreamed it would happen.
  • How did Lisa know she would achieve her dreams of becoming a foreign correspondent? During her first ever live TV broadcast, Lisa covered a local psychic fair, in which foreign flags were read in her palm.
  • What does Lisa do on vacation? She embarks on trips with Journalists for Human Rights. On her most recent trip to Myanmar, Lisa worked with local journalists who were learning how to report the truth for the first time under a new democratic government.
  • The gender issue was never one for Lisa, who along with her sisters, were never raised in terms of being female. While Lisa has faced the issue of gender many times in her career, she has never let it slow her down.
  • During our Q&A, Lisa was asked if she would ever run for a government role, such as the Minister of Foreign Affairs, to which she responded that she enjoys reporting on such events, but most likely will not choose to take part in it in the next stages of her career.

To learn more from this inspiring role model, check out Lisa’s Lessons Learned column.

Next Up: Join us on April 28th, 2016 to hear from the women leading the most powerful financial institutions in the country, and learn from their personal journeys on how to set yourself up for the C-Suite. Tickets are selling fast, get yours today!

Photographs by Tom Sandler Photography