Annette Verschuren, the former president of Home Depot Canada, will chair the 2012 Governor General's Canadian Leadership Conference, according to an article in the Montreal Gazette. She will be the first woman ever to lead the symposium.
The conference, founded in 1983, chooses 230 young Canadian leaders from business, labor, public administration and the community sector for an intensive two-week training program. So far, half the applicants are women, also a first, Verschuren said.
The 55-year-old executive, who grew up in Canada, left Home Depot this past January after a 15-year career. She helped build the Atlanta retailer’s Canada division from 19 stores into 179 outlets, 27,000 employees and $6 billion in sales. In 2006 she was named president of Home Depot Asia, putting her in charge of the company’s China stores as well.