GPOP to Celebrate 20th Anniversary

A message from Shelagh Donnelly, Chair, GPOP|PGBDG Board of Directors

Welcome to GPOP. As we prepare to celebrate our association’s 20th anniversary, we’ve established a Board of Directors and by-laws, and launched our new name and logo. GPOP is the short and snappy version of our formal name, CICan:GPOP|PGBDG. We are a network of individuals contributing to Canadian colleges and institutes as board professionals and/or as president’s assistants.

We are an independent body, with membership that is currently primarily English speaking. As we continually welcome peers who serve as the right hand of their respective board or CEO within any public Canadian cegep, college or post-secondary institute, we ratified our name change in both English and French.

So: formally, we are CICan:Governance and President’s Office Professionals(GPOP) or, in French, Professionnels de la gouvernance et des bureaux des directeurs généraux de CICan (PGBDG) . If you qualify for membership and would like to learn more, check our Membership page.

In launching our new name, we proudly reflect our alignment with CICan, Colleges and Institutes Canada, formerly known as ACCC. We also applaud our association’s founders and all who have contributed to its evolution over the past 20 years.

  • 1995: Members founded the Professional Board Staff Network (PBSN)  as a peer network and professional development body for people contributing in governance capacities to Canadian colleges and held an inaugural network meeting in Victoria, BC.
  • 1996 – 2008: Annual meetings, held during Association of Canadian Community Colleges (now CICan; Colleges and Institutes Canada) conferences, focused on board professionals’ role in presidential searches and evaluation, board recruitment, orientation and communications, best use of technologies, and more.
  • 2009: The association worked with ACCC to reach out to counterparts across the country in creating a national contact email list that evolved into a renewed listserv. If a member is facing a challenge, s/he knows members will respond with professionalism and goodwill. Members reach out to one another in confidence that their queries on best practices, professional development and sticky issues will receive thoughtful consideration and timely responses that support the individual and her or his institution.
  • 2010: The association marked its 15th anniversary with its first appearance on ACCC’s annual conference programme; our concurrent session featured an interactive panel and drew an audience that extended beyond PBSN membership.
  • 2011: We became the PBSN/PNPA, in recognition that the association’s annual meetings and listserv increasinglyreflected the world of board professionals and that of EAs and managers who are directly responsible to their institutions’ CEOs. The PNPA extension? Professional Network of Presidents’ Assistants.
  • 2014: The association launched this website and, during its Ottawa AGM, elected its first Board of Directors and established by-laws. Members identified the need to develop a new name and, through electronic voting in December 2014, ratified the association’s new name.

Watch for more posts as we begin our countdown to GPOP’s 2015 AGM, workshops and networking session in Winnipeg, Manitoba.



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