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New Executive Director at Equitas


The Board of Directors is delighted to announce that Odette McCarthy will become Equitas’ new Executive Director on June 1, 2020.  Odette was hired following a broad competitive process and she brings with her a strong and unique combination of management skills, experience and commitment to human rights values. The Board is delighted that Equitas found such a strong leader to head the organization in the coming years.  

Odette is an experienced leader with over 25 years’ experience in the field of international cooperation, working to promote the rights of groups facing marginalization and discrimination.  As a member of the CECI team since 2007, she has to contributed to program design and management and played a key role as a gender equality expert.  Most recently, she directed their Uniterra Program, co-implemented with WUSC, leading teams in Canada and in 14 countries around the world to reinforce women’s economic empowerment. As well, she has taught at Université de Montréal in international cooperation. Given the nature of Equitas’ work, the Board is particularly pleased that she also brings a strong track record of building and sustaining effective partnerships.  

As we welcome Odette, Equitas will be saying goodbye to Ian Hamilton who has served Equitas for 23 years (16 as Executive Director). The Board thanks Ian for his dedication to the organization. From the time he announced his intention to move on, Ian has worked closely with the Board to ensure a smooth transition and we are extremely grateful that he has agreed to stay on until the end of June to support Odette as she assumes her new functions.

Welcome Odette! 

Odette McCarthy, Equitas’ new Executive Director

More about Odette McCarthy

Odette McCarthy is a gender equality specialist and a seasoned manager with more than 25 years of international cooperation experience. She was Director of the Uniterra Program, a CECI and WUSC program that strengthens women’s economic power empowerment in 14 countries. Since 2011, she has been teaching the Gender Equality course as part of the Université de Montréal’s certificate in international cooperation.  Throughout her professional career, she has demonstrated a sustained commitment to promoting the rights of marginalized populations. 

Partnership is at the heart of Odette McCarthy’s achievements. She has demonstrated the ability to collaborate effectively with diverse stakeholders in Canada and the Global South. She is an active member of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Council for International Cooperation and of the International Forum for Volunteering for Development. She is very enthusiastic about taking on this new role and working closely with the Equitas’ team and partners.