Coleen MacKinnon

PhSho Half the Sky Event 160Coleen MacKinnon is the Quebec representative for Catalyst, a global organization dedicated to the advancement of women in the workplace.

 Prior to joining Catalyst, Coleen spent over 15 years as a social sector consultant, providing counsel in the area of advocacy, strategic planning, PR/communications and fundraising—in Montreal and Sydney, Australia. Since 2008, she has dedicated her career to facilitating progressive social change through a ‘collective impact’ (multi-stakeholder, cross-sector) approach.

 In 2012, Coleen established Les Affranchies, a community organization dedicated to raising awareness and encouraging supportive policies to combat human trafficking in Quebec. Despite the fact that one-third of the country’s human trafficking cases were based in the province, awareness was remarkably low. Through a collective impact approach, Les Affranchies facilitated a comprehensive community consultation; hosted an awareness event (1000+ participants); produced a mini-documentary featuring a Quebec survivor of human trafficking; launched a 12-week radio campaign; and, met with elected officials across three provincial parties.

 Coleen began her collective impact work in Sydney, Australia. Under the auspices of the St James Ethics Centre, Coleen led a successful campaign to end a disciminatory education policy impacting New South Wales primary schools students. The 18-month effort resulted in the replacement of the policy with socially progressive legislation.

 In addition to consulting, Coleen held senior management positions with The Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation (1998-2000) and McGill University (1991-1996). She began her career with Corporate Communications, a Halifax-based public relations and advertising firm.

 Coleen holds a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology and English) from Saint Francis Xavier University, a Diploma in Public Relations from McGill University, and a Diploma in French from l’Université du Québec à Chicoutimi.

What is TEDxMontrealWomen?

The TEDxMontrealWomen event challenges each and everyone of us, as members of society, to question and define our values and beliefs in an effort to create an awareness and understanding of why we behave as we do, what motivates our behaviors and what drives our decisions to conduct our lives as we do. With this increased consciousness, we discover that we are more empowered than we previously thought to make positive, disruptive and impactful changes in whichever spheres of influence we choose. TEDxMontrealWomen is an independently organized event and an integral part of the global TEDWomen community.

What is TEDx?

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED has created a program called TEDx. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. Our event is called TEDxMontrealWomen, where x = independently organized TED event. At our TEDxMontrealWomen event, TEDTalks video and live speakers will combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events, including ours, are self-organized.