International Women’s Day
is Monday March 8, 2021. The OPP Association wishes all women celebrating this day best wishes in your personal and professional lives. Thank you for all you do to make our communities a better place to live, work and play.
Today we are featuring the service and inspiration through quotes of four women in leadership roles past and present at the OPP Association.
Terri Hubbert has served as a police officer with the Peel Regional Police and the OPP. Terri currently serves full time as an elected member of the OPP Association Board of Directors. Terri states:
"I feel honoured and privileged to be elected to represent all uniform and civilian members, active or retired of the OPP Association, regardless of gender. I work tirelessly in unity with my fellow Board Members to ensure the health and well being of our membership. I encourage everyone, regardless of your gender, to become involved in your Association, and work together collaboratively for the good of the membership, and in turn the communities we serve."
Debbie McKenna served the OPP Association in various roles starting in 1980. In 1996 she became the first female Executive Officer in the OPP Association. Debbie states:
“With a network of trusted mentors and colleagues, hard work, patience, and sacrifice I was able to achieve various positions within the OPPA. I believe this was done through the acquisition of labour relations knowledge and sharing of that knowledge with others. That knowledge enabled myself and others to achieve the vision and goal of improving our members and their families lives for the better. I was very proud to have been able to make a difference in people’s lives.”
Cindy Bahm joined the OPP in July, 1985, and served over 35yrs as a Detachment Administrative Clerk. In 2001 Cindy was elected as an Executive Member of the OPP Association Board of Directors, a position that she held for eight years. Cindy states:
“I am proud to hold the distinction of being the first female and first civilian director on the OPPA Board of Directors. It was only after serving 8 years in that role and leaving the board that I actually realized the enormity of those achievements and the doors that I opened for others. At the time, I had to hit the ground running without the normal preparation and progression for such a role. Just as well, as this forced me to push my discomfort and insecurities to the back of my mind and work hard to gain respect from my colleagues and the members that I represented. I juggled the complexities of a male dominated work environment as well as my responsibilities of wife, mom and home, mostly while away, with the unwavering support of my husband. In retrospect, I am honoured to have left a legacy within the OPPA and wouldn’t change the path of my OPP career if given the chance.”
Kim Williams began her policing career in 1976. Over the years, she actively attended OPP Association meetings. In 2000 she was elected to the 18 Branch Executive, holding the positions of President and Director. In 2005 she was elected to the OPP Association Board of Directors and served for six years. Kim states:
“I understood very early in my career, when woman officers were few, that I had the power over myself and that I needed to use my voice. The Association provided me with that opportunity to be heard but also allowed me to advocate for others particularly other women. I realized the importance of my voice when I saw others in the world who voices were silenced. But I didn’t move forward alone. I was supported by people such as former President Brian Adkin who was always forward thinking and cognizant of the role of woman in policing. There were other woman before me such as Susan Storry and Faye McAvoy, who challenged the organization and paved the way for me to be elected as the first woman officer on the Board of Directors. It is an ongoing responsibility to support and celebrate woman’s rights.”
Thank you to those who provided us with photos and quotes to celebrate International Women’s Day 2021. Your service and willingness to share your experiences are greatly appreciated. We know there are many more women who have made and are making a difference out there. If any other members, past or present, wish us to consider sharing your stories, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
. Your service and willingness to share your experiences are greatly appreciated, and hopefully will inspire others to follow in your footsteps in a legacy of service.
Happy International Women’s Day!