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Leader Character & Candour Conference

Jan 24, 2024 • 8:30 am

Ivey Business School (virtual)

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Dr. Chika Stacy Oriuwa and Zahra Al-Harazi

Dr. Chika Stacy Oriuwa and Zahra Al-Harazi

This event is entirely online and held for Ivey HBA1 students. It is not open to the public.

On Wednesday, January 24, the Ian O. Ihnatowycz Institute for Leadership will be hosting the 11th annual HBA Leadership Character & Candour Conference. The event includes leaders who will deliver compelling messages about the importance character and candour in our professional and personal lives.


8:30 - 8:40 am      Opening remarks
8:40 - 9:40 am      Opening speaker Dr. Chika Stacy Oriuwa
9:40 - 9:50 am      Thank you and instructions
9:45 - 10:10 am      Break
10:10 - 11:30 am      Invictus Workshop in classroom sections
11:30 - 11:50 am      Break
11:50 am - 12:50 pm      Closing speaker Zahra Al-Harazi


Dr. Chika Stacy Oriuwa
Physician, Changemaker, Transformative Leadership, Advocate for Diversity and Inclusion

One of Time magazine’s “2021 Next Generational Leaders”, Dr. Chika Stacy Oriuwa is a medical trailblazer spearheading change in healthcare and beyond. She is an accomplished physician, spoken word poet, and advocate for racialized and marginalized populations. Oriuwa draws on her personal and professional experience to share insight and actionable strategies into transformative leadership, mental health and wellness, and igniting change to build a more equitable future for all.

Currently a resident doctor in psychiatry at the University of Toronto (U of T), Oriuwa is a graduate of the University’s Faculty of Medicine. When she arrived as an incoming medical student to find she was the only Black student in her cohort, she channeled this disappointment into action, becoming a vocal advocate for improving disparities in Black health and confronting institutional discrimination.

Since then, Oriuwa has become the first Black woman to be named sole valedictorian of the department and has spoken at numerous national and international events on the topics of DEI, leadership, mental health, and her journey as an underrepresented minority in medicine. Oriuwa was also an ambassador and educator of U of T’s Black Student Application Program, where she saw the faculty admit the largest group of Black medical students in Canadian history.

In addition, Oriuwa is a professional spoken word artist. Working under the Hamilton Youth Poets, she has earned her place as a national slam poetry finalist twice. In 2017, she released her renowned slam poem “Woman, Black” and in 2018 published her seminal article In My White Coat, I am More Black than Ever for FLARE magazine’s Black History Month campaign. She has also been featured on CBC’s The National, CTV News, CP24, Toronto Star, Time magazine, and TODAY, amongst others. She is slated to release her first memoir with HarperCollins in 2024.

A recipient of numerous prestigious awards and honours, Oriuwa was named on Maclean’s Power 50 List in 2022 and was recognized as one of Best Health Magazine's “2020 Women of the Year”. She was also recently honoured in Mattel’s #ThankYouHeroes campaign alongside five other women with a one-of-a-kind Barbie doll made in her image to commemorate her contributions as a frontline healthcare worker.

In addition to her medical degree, Oriuwa has a master’s degree in Health Systems Leadership and Innovation from the University of Toronto. She also serves on Indigo's board of directors, using her expertise to inform their efforts in advancing equity and curating spaces of wellness and inclusion.


Zahra Al-Harazi
Award-Winning Entrepreneur, Purpose-Driven Leadership Expert

The road to real leadership is rarely a straight one. Among Canada’s most successful entrepreneurs, few have faced more obstacles than Zahra Al-Harazi. With a no-holds-barred attitude, Al-Harazi helps people and organizations realize their potential for success through finding their purpose. She draws on her experience as a pioneering woman in the business world with a unique approach to attitude, leadership, and success, as well as her experience as a refugee, immigrant, entrepreneur, and community-builder.

A survivor of two civil wars, Al-Harazi immigrated to Canada with her three children in 1996. She had no higher education or connections and very little understanding of the business world, but her entrepreneurial spirit quickly led her to start her first company Foundry Communications, an internationally recognized Canadian creative powerhouse.

Al-Harazi is currently co-founder of the startup, Skillit, which is a marketplace for sharing knowledge and building skills. She is also a consultant who has worked with thousands of leaders on employee engagement, navigating disruption, leading change, shifting stakeholder values, corporate social responsibility, and brand transformations.

In recognition of her many accomplishments, Al-Harazi has been named one of Calgary’s Top 40 Under 40, Woman Entrepreneur of the Year by Chatelaine magazine, and one of Canada’s 100 most powerful women by WXN. She has also received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for contributions to Canada, and the RBC Top 25 Immigrants to Canada Award.

As a speaker, Al-Harazi has spoken to audiences in more than 20 countries, inspiring leading institutions such as Fortune 500 companies, entrepreneurs, government agencies, and professional organizations. Her clients have included The Royal Bank of Canada, Entrepreneurs’ Organization, Ernst & Young, Young Presidents Organization, WXN, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Great West Life, Telus, University of Toronto, and the Government of Canada, among many others. Her specialty is in understanding the complexities required for building a smart, skilled multi-generational workforce.

Al-Harazi is a former Canadian Ambassador to UNICEF. She currently sits on the board of directors for The Walrus, and is the author of What it Takes, published January 2020.