York’s Hennick Centre for Business and Law honours accomplished leader

Carol Hansell
Carol Hansell

The Jay and Barbara Hennick Centre for Business and Law at York University has presented the 2016 Hennick Medal for Career Achievement to Carol Hansell (LLB/MBA ’86), founder and senior partner of Hansell LLP and Hansell McLaughlin Advisory, and one of Canada’s foremost experts in corporate governance.

Carol Hansell

The Hennick Medal, which is awarded annually to a distinguished leader who has earned international recognition in the business and legal communities, was given to Hansell at a reception in her honour in Toronto on Feb. 8.

Schulich Dean Dezsö J. Horváth introduced Hansell at the Hennick Medal reception. “Carol is not only one of our most accomplished graduates,” said Horváth, “she is also a lifelong friend of the Schulich School, a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council and the recipient of a Schulich Alumni Achievement Award in 2005 for “Outstanding Public Contribution.”

In praising Hansell’s career achievements over several decades, Horváth quoted Mervyn King, former governor of the Bank of England, who said that “good corporate governance is about ‘intellectual honesty’ and not just sticking to rules and regulations…”.

Horváth then added, “If that is true – and I believe it is – there are none who have practiced intellectual honesty more expertly, more frequently and more faithfully than Carol Hansell.”

Hansell, who was appointed last year as chair of Ontario’s Business Law Advisory Council, is the author of a four-volume looseleaf, Directors and Officers in Canada: Law and Practice, that deals with the legal framework of corporate governance in Canada, and What Directors Need to Know: Corporate Governance.

She was inducted as a Fellow of the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD) in 2013 and received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Investor Relations from IR Magazine Awards – Canada in 2015. She is a founding trustee and Fellow of the American College of Governance Counsel.

In addition to her LLB/MBA degree from York, she also holds degrees from Western University (BA ’81) and the University of Toronto (MA ’82).

“Carol Hansell is a role model for our students,” said Edward J. Waitzer, Jarislowsky Dimma Mooney Chair in Corporate Governance at York University’s Osgoode Hall Law School and the Schulich School of Business, and director of the Hennick Centre. “She is a pioneer in governance education and thought leadership, grounded in practical experience. In a career spanning more than 25 years, she has done so much – from leading transactions to advising boards, management teams, institutional shareholders and regulators in connection with legal and governance challenges to shaping public policy. She has also given back to the community, as a board member, mentor and force of nature.”

The event was dedicated to the memory of James Gillies, founding dean of the Schulich School of Business. Horváth noted that Hansell was a former student of Gillies.

Previous recipients of the Hennick Medal have been Kathleen Taylor, former president and CEO of Four Seasons Hotel and Resorts and now chair of the RBC Board of Directors, in 2010; Tye Burt, former president and CEO of Kinross Gold Corporation, in 2011; Moya Greene, CEO of Royal Mail Group, in 2012; Gregory Sorbara, former MPP, Vaughan and now Chancellor of York University, in 2013; Marianne Harris, chair of the Board of Directors of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC), in 2014; and Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. and chairman of Ferrari S.p.A., in 2015.

About the Jay and Barbara Hennick Centre for Business and Law
Launched in 2009, the Jay and Barbara Hennick Centre for Business and Law – a joint initiative of Osgoode Hall Law School and the Schulich School of Business at York University – is the first Canadian centre to promote and develop joint business and law scholarship and education. Made possible by a gift from Jay and Barbara Hennick, the Hennick Centre’s flagship is the joint JD/MBA program, offered by Osgoode and Schulich. The Hennick Centre also draws together the teaching and research strengths of the Davies Fund for Business Law and other endowed chairs including the Jarislowsky Dimma Mooney Chair in Corporate Governance, cross-appointed to Osgoode and Schulich.