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Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council announces winners of fourth annual Immigrant Success Awards

Businesses benefit from immigrant talent

TORONTO, March 25, 2010— The Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) and RBC are pleased to announce winners of the 4th annual Immigrant Success (IS) Awards, recognizing innovation and leadership in integrating skilled immigrants into the Toronto Region labour market.

"Vision, innovation, leadership and commitment set this year's Immigrant Success Award winners apart from the rest," says Zabeen Hirji, Chief Human Resources Officer, RBC and Co-Chair, TRIEC. "If Canada is to realize the global advantage of its diversity and become the destination of choice for professionals, skilled people, and entrepreneurs, we must do a better job of helping new immigrants integrate into society and recognize their achievements as well as their contributions to the prosperity of our country."

"At TRIEC we know that tapping the skilled immigrant talent pool is smart business," says Elizabeth McIsaac, executive director, TRIEC. "As we look to our city's future and demographic trends, we also know that those employers that are finding ways to do this more effectively will be the leaders of tomorrow."

Four organizations and one individual will be honoured for their steadfast commitment to recruiting and integrating skilled immigrants.

2009 IS Award Recipients

  • Samtack, RBC Immigrant Advantage Award
    With over 90 per cent of its 100 plus workforce comprised of immigrants, this computer manufacturing and distribution company has leveraged skilled immigrant talent to respond to changing needs of mass merchant customers; increased market share with smaller, local, diverse retailers and purchased parts from overseas suppliers, mainly from China.

  • Pitney Bowes, RBC Immigrant Advantage Award
    A mail and document mailstream technology company, more than half of Pitney Bowes' high potential leaders are diverse employees, while 15 per cent of senior leaders are skilled immigrants. The company developed their Talent & Inclusion Plan in order to be positioned as a diversity employer of choice and embed skilled immigrants in its succession planning.

  • St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto Star Award for Excellence in Workplace Integration
    St. Michael's Hospital implemented the Career Bridge internship program for skilled immigrants, which has spread to eight departments. The organization has created a full-time position responsible for integrating skilled immigrants into the organization and has achieved a high conversion rate from its 32 interns.

  • Fraser Milner Casgrain LLP, CBC Toronto Vision Award for Immigrant Inclusion
    A Canadian business and litigation law firm, FMC established a six-month paid internship for internationally trained lawyers - a first in Canada. They now work with the University of Toronto's Faculty of Law to develop a bridging program that will create new pathways to employment for internationally trained lawyers.

  • Michael Bach, National Director, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, KPMG Canada, Canadian HR Reporter Individual Achievement Award
    Michael wrote KPMG's business case for diversity, received buy in from leadership and now heads the company's diversity initiatives. Amongst other achievements, he entrenched a truly open recruiting process for skilled immigrants; introduced diversity training for all new hires and cultural competence training for managers.

The winners, all profiled at, will be celebrated tonight at an invitation-only reception hosted by RBC. Matt Galloway, Host, Metro Morning, CBC Radio One 99.1 will be MC with a keynote by Zabeen Hirji, Chief Human Resources Officer, RBC and Co-Chair, TRIEC.

The IS Awards are presented by TRIEC and sponsored by RBC, with media partners Canadian HR Reporter, CBC Toronto and the Toronto Star. For complete details about the IS Awards and to view profiles of the winners visit

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TRIEC creates and champions solutions to better integrate skilled immigrants in the Greater Toronto Region labour market. For more information visit

For further information and to RSVP for the award reception, please contact:

Emily Mills
at 416.944.1946 x 282 (w) | 416.464.2243 (BB) or;

Claire DeVeale-Blane
at 416.944.1946 x 271 (W) | 416.464.4042 (BB) or