Managing Director, Ontario, and Chief Legal Officer
"I was the beneficiary of female mentorship in the early stages of my career, and I continue to lean on a few special women in my life for guidance and support,” says Danielle Skipp, Managing Director, Ontario, and Chief Legal Officer at Nicola Wealth. “I make time to give this support to others. Wealth management is a fabulous industry for women, and those of us who exist in leadership roles can empower young and mid-career women by sharing our stories.”
There are few people better positioned to offer such guidance than Skipp. Her 25-year career in financial services includes roles at the Canadian Banking Association, CIBC and UBS, among others. Skipp is an advocate for industry associations, notably 100 Women in Finance, a global organization committed to empowering women in the finance industry, where she recently served as the Toronto chapter chair for two years and remains actively involved. She is also a participant in Women in Capital Markets and a former co-chair of the Managers Only Committee for the Alternative Investment Management Association of Canada. In 2018, she joined the board of directors of Ridge Canada Cyber Solutions, which provides cyber insurance products, consulting and loss control services to insurance agents and brokers, and in 2020, she joined the University of Toronto Governing Council.
This wealth of experience didn’t make the past year less of a challenge, however. Skipp navigated both the pandemic and a new role at Nicola Wealth with aplomb, ensuring her rightful place on WP’s 5-Star Leading Women in Wealth list.
“This past year was the first full year for me at Nicola Wealth as a member of our senior leadership team,” she says. “As a ‘newbie,’ I focused on building strong relationships, listening and learning, and stepping into opportunities where I could roll up my sleeves on day-to-day work to support my colleagues. It is not a cliché to say that it is important to be a strong team player. In my view, it is everything.”
While remote work has been an obstacle for many, it’s something that presented both Skipp and Nicola Wealth with an abundance of opportunities during 2021. “Remote work was not a roadblock,” Skipp says. “In the past 18 months at Nicola Wealth, we have onboarded something like 120 new employees across our Vancouver and Toronto offices, [which is] something we will look back upon as truly remarkable. And remote work has been helpful as a working mom. Flexibility at work has been very important for me, giving me the opportunity to pursue my career, raise my children and enjoy a social life.”
Overall, Skipp concludes, it’s not just the recognition of being on the 5-Star Leading Women in Wealth list that matters – although that is “gratifying” – but “the opportunity to share some of my career path story to inspire both women and men who are considering career opportunities in the wealth management industry.”