Responsible Investment Association

Canada's industry association for responsible investment

Overview

The Responsible Investment Association (RIA) is Canada’s industry association for responsible investment. RIA members believe that the integration of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into the selection and management of investments can provide superior risk adjusted returns and positive societal impact.

100
organizational members
Asset Managers, Asset Owners & Service Providers
250
individual members
Advisors, Consultants & Other Professionals

Our Mandate

The RIA has five strategic priorities for driving the adoption of RI in Canada’s retail and institutional markets:

  • Market Education – Driving awareness and demand for responsible investments
  • Integration – Developing RI capacity of investment professionals
  • Advocacy – Shifting public policy and regulation to support RI
  • Brand & Reputation – Strengthening the RIA’s reputation as the leading voice for RI in Canada
  • Capacity Building – Building the RIA’s financial and human capital resources

History

The RIA’s predecessor, the Social Investment Organization (SIO), was established in 1989 to advance socially responsible investing (SRI) in Canada. The SIO played a central role in building and developing SRI in Canada for 24 years.

In 2013, the SIO was rebranded as the Responsible Investment Association to evolve with the industry and to encompass the broader scope of responsible investing, which incorporates environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues into the selection and management of investments.

RIA in Action

The RIA runs many programs, projects, events and initiatives to deliver on its mandate of advancing responsible investment in Canada.
Educational & Networking Events
  • We host the annual RIA Conference to provide education on the latest issues & trends in the field of responsible investing.
  • We also host smaller events such as ESG Afterwork and educational events such as ESG Breakfasts.
  • We coordinate Responsible Investment Week in Canada, collaborating with members and partners across Canada to host events throughout a week typically in the fall.
  • We also host webinars and do an annual national tour to reach our members across Canada.
Professional Development
  • We offer several courses and three financial designations for our members: Responsible Investment Specialist (RIS), Responsible Investment Advisor Certification (RIAC), Responsible Investment Professional Certification (RIPC).
  • We also partner with members to support their internal events to educate staff and clients about responsible investing.
Industry Collaboration
  • We act as Secretariat for the Toronto RI Working Group, Vancouver RI Working Group and Policy Stewardship Group to facilitate peer learning and industry collaboration.
  • We also host the RIA Network listserv – a communications tool for RIA Members to contact other RIA Members for collaborative opportunities.
Research
  • We conduct research for the biennial Canadian Responsible Investment Trends Report to track the growth and development of responsible investing in Canada.
  • We release quarterly reports on the performance of RI funds.
  • We also conduct the annual RIA Investor Opinion Survey to track individual investors’ interest in RI and related issues.
Digital Communications
  • We host the RIA website at www.riacanada.ca to promote education about responsible investing.
  • We also leverage social media @riacanada to share RI news and enhance outreach to the investing public.
  • We also host an online magazine to share news, views, and industry developments from RIA members and industry experts.
Media Relations
  • As part of our effort to raise awareness of responsible investing and raise the profile of RIA members, the RIA is regularly quoted by industry and mainstream media outlets.
  • In addition to media coverage, the RIA CEO also writes a regular column for Investment Executive and places strategic op-eds in various reputable media outlets
Advocacy
  • We engage with regulators and government to advance the development of responsible investing in Canada.

Our Team

Board of Directors

Roger Beauchemin,
Vice-Chair
President & CEO
Addenda Capital Montreal, Quebec
Alicja Brown,
Treasurer
Investment Advisor
Remy Brown Investment Group / CIBC Wood Gundy Edmonton, Alberta
Lisa Becker
COO & CCO
University of Toronto Asset Management Corporation Toronto, Ontario
Jonathan Carter
Managing Director
CIBC Private Wealth Management / CIBC Wood Gundy Toronto, Ontario
Milla Craig
Founder and President
Millani Perspectives Montréal, Quebec
Patsy Doerr
Global Head of Corporate Responsibility and Inclusion
Thomson Reuters New York City, New York
Patti Dolan
Portfolio Manager
Raymond James Ltd. Calgary, Alberta
Johnny Fansher
Financial Advisor
Johnny Fansher Financial London, Ontario
Kelly Gauthier
Managing Director, Impact Advisory
Rally Assets Toronto, Ontario
Edgar Hielema
Lawyer
Gardiner Roberts LLP Toronto, Ontario
Daphne King
Vice President, National Accounts and Strategic Sales Initiatives
iA Clarington Toronto, Ontario
Simon MacMahon
Executive Vice President, Research Products
Sustainalytics Toronto, Ontario
Jason Milne,
Secretary
Vice President, Corporate Governance & Responsible Investment
RBC Global Asset Management Toronto, Ontario
Ian Robertson,
Chair
Vice President, Director, Portfolio Manager
Odlum Brown Limited Vancouver, British Columbia
Sébastien Vallée
Senior Manager, Investment Solutions
Desjardins Group Lévis, Quebec
Karrie Van Belle
Senior Vice-President, Head of Marketing and Communications
AGF Investments Inc. Toronto, Ontario
Louis Spadacini
Vice President, National Institutional & Strategic Relationships
NEI Investments Toronto, Ontario
Michael Silicz
Investment Advisor
National Bank Financial Wealth Management Winnipeg, Manitoba
Brent Zorgdrager
Chief Executive Officer
Kindred Credit Union Kitchener, Ontario

In the Press

RIA News

Working Groups

Advancing RI Through Peer Learning

The RIA serves as Secretariat for institutional RI Working Groups in Toronto and Vancouver. The purpose of these Working Groups is to leverage diverse networks and expertise to facilitate peer learning regarding responsible investment, and to help achieve the common goal of growing the RI industry. The Working Groups are participant-driven and focus on topics decided by the participants. Participants include CIOs, Portfolio Managers, Researchers, Analysts, VPs, Directors, Managers and other decision-makers from asset management firms and asset owners such as foundations and endowments.

The Toronto RI Working Group meets on a quarterly basis. It is composed of Co-Chairs, a Steering Committee, a Secretariat and over 70 professionals who participate in numerous Work Streams focused on various RI issues. Work Streams currently include: Shareholder Engagement; Impact Investing; ESG Integration; Climate Change; and Transparency & Accountability. The Working Group also engages with CFA Societies and the CFA Institute around responsible investing.

The larger Working Group meets quarterly, and the smaller Work Streams typically meet more frequently. The Work Streams provide updates to other participants at the quarterly Working Group meetings.

View the Toronto RI Working Group charter here. If you wish to learn more about the Toronto RI Working Group, please contact us: staff@riacanada.ca.

Toronto Steering Committee

  • Hyewon Kong (Co-Chair)
    Associate Portfolio Manager
    AGF Investments
  • Brian Minns (Co-Chair)
    Manager, Sustainable Investing
    Addenda Capital
  • Sarah Takaki
    Principal, Responsible Investing
    Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
  • Karen Lockridge
    Principal
    Mercer
  • Michael Jantzi
    CEO
    Sustainalytics
  • Rosa van den Beemt
    ESG Analyst
    NEI Investments
  • Nalini Feuilloley
    Head of Canada
    Principles for Responsible Investment

The Vancouver RI Working Group is composed of a wide range of professionals working in the field of responsible investment. The Vancouver Group started in summer 2016 and meets on a bi-monthly basis.

If you wish to learn more about the Vancouver RI Working Group, please contact us at: staff@riacanada.ca.