Anne Giardini is the newest chancellor at Simon Fraser University (SFU), a research university (and my alma mater) based in Burnaby, BC. She takes on this new role as the latest of many ventures that she has done successfully, from a lawyer to author and environmentalist. What she has achieved – so far – is so much that it’s mind boggling and and inspirational.
Anne Giardini as SFU Chancellor
The new role is a full-circle moment for Anne Giardini, who graduated from SFU in 1980 with a BA in Economics. She takes the position officially today, June 13th. Duties of an SFU chancellor include being a university representative in the community, for both alumni and students, and honoring students with awards at convocation.
The Balancing Act and Anne Giardini: Inspiration is Here
Aha, but this busy woman, who lives in Vancouver, BC, has more on her plate than being new chancellor. She is also president of Weyerhaeuser Company Limited, which is a part of the forestry giant Weyerhaeuser Company. She climbed the ranks since first joining the company in 1994.
In addition to this important role, Anne Giardini is also a published author and an avid environmental activist. She has two books, both released through HarperCollins, titled “Advice for Italian Boys” and “The Sad Truth about Happiness.” The latter novel was a bestseller that won her the 2007 Audie Award.
Ah yes, and she is a lawyer, having gone on to further her education after SFU at The University of British Columbia (LLB) and then Cambridge University (LLM). So, yes, this is one smart lady.
A Champion of Women’s Rights
And, this inspirational BC woman is also a champion of women’s rights. She was a key fundraiser in the “Because I’m a Girl” campaign from Plan Canada, and that role won her a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medal in 2013. She has also volunteered with the Women of Distinction Awards and Young Women in Business organizations. Also, this Vancouver woman is a mother and wife. Is she an inspiration? Yes.
The Lessons of Inspiration
What do we learn from this glance into the life of new SFU chancellor Anne Giardini? I believe that we see a woman who multitasks and follows her heart. She provides words that move people by having written a bestselling novel. In working with women-rights organizations, she helps empower women.
As an SFU chancellor and a company president, Anne Giardini provides a great example for any woman who believe there is a ceiling to what she can achieve. The only boundaries truly are the ones we place on ourselves. There are no limits – and with hard work, education and determination, Anne Giardini has proven that.