Kathy Bardswick, the president and CEO of The Co-operators, plans to retire at the end of the year.
On Feb. 19 The Co-operators announced that Bardswick intends to step down at the end of 2016. She first joined the organisation in 1978, and has held progressively senior roles culminating with her appointment as president and chief executive officer in 2002.
During her tenure, Bardswick worked to implement more sustainable business practices; The Co-operators has been ranked as one of the top 50 socially responsible corporations by Maclean's magazine and Sustainalytics, and in 2013 the company was ranked #1 on Corporate Knights' list of most sustainable cooperatives in the world. Bardswick was also named one of the most influential women in Canada by Women of Influence Inc. in 2014.
"Under Kathy's guidance, The Cooperators has prospered and is recognized today as a leader in the Canadian insurance industry, as well as the cooperative sector," commented John Harvie, chairman of The Cooperators’ board of directors. "Her fundamental belief that the world needs organizations that follow ethical business practices, and incorporate sustainable, responsible decision-making, has had a significant impact on our organization and the communities in which we serve. She has helped to make the world a better place."
The Co-operators' board of directors will begin looking for Bardswick's successor after the organization's annual general meeting in April.