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2018 Women of Distinction Nominees | Outstanding Workplace

Recognized nationally, the YWCA Women of Distinction Awards honours individuals and organizations whose outstanding activities and achievements contribute to the well-being and future of our community.

Congratulations to the 2018 nominees in the category of Outstanding Workplace


As an employer equally committed to its staff as well as its members, BCAA has been recognized as a 2018 Aon Best Employer at the Gold level. It offers a wide range of resources to support personal and work/life issues, including its Employee & Family Assistance, Best Doctors and Executive Coach Programs and flexible working arrangements. Its Evo team partnered with Vancouver Start-Up Week where employees volunteered as judges and mentors to entrepreneurs working on innovative ideas. With women comprising two thirds of BCAA’s workforce and management team, BCAA identifies high-potential women and strategically maps out their development as part of its succession planning. To support the health and wellness of its employees, BCAA has an on-site gym at head office and offers discounted gym memberships to other employees across BC.



With more than 70% female employees, a preference to promote women from within where possible and thought-leader Karen Flavelle as CEO, Purdys is at the forefront of offering programs that support employees’ work/life balance. Purdys Living la Vida Cocoa company-wide wellness program supports wellness across mind, body and spirit. With an on-site gym, employees are encouraged to step away from work and take advantage of the facilities. Purdys has a Learning and Development Specialist who pairs employees with mentors from areas of the business of interest to them. Purdys conducts an annual AON Hewitt Employee Engagement Survey, which has resulted in a Best Employer ranking nine times.



As a living-wage employer since 2011, United Way of the Lower Mainland, a unionized employer, exemplifies the qualities of an Outstanding Workplace. It has explicit commitments to human rights, equal pay for work of equal value and a family-friendly workplace. The United Way encourages staff members to contribute their strengths, ideas, and values within the organization and in the communities in which they live.  It provides enough flex days to create work/life balance; is committed to a gender neutral workplace; has unlimited sick days and maintains an excellent benefits program including an Employee Assistance Program. The United Way also promotes a healthy lifestyle by providing staff with in-house yoga classes and RMT massage sessions.


Meet the 2018 Women of Distinction Award nominees in other categories