Accounting | News

Unification complete: ‘It feels good to finally be a CPA’

In the news: Organization in Northwest Territories and Nunavut unified, Kevin Dancey and Shelley Brown named to Order of Canada, expert panel on sustainable finance consults with accountants

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Kevin Dancey and Shelley BrownKevin Dancey, former president and CEO of CPA Canada, and Shelley Brown, former co-chair of the CPA Canada board of directors, were named as members of the Order of Canada.


With the passage of twinned legislation by the governments of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut, legacy bodies for accountants in those two territories have been united as the Chartered Professional Accountants of Northwest Territories and Nunavut. 

The statutes were proclaimed on Jan. 8, 2019, completing the final step in merging the accounting profession under the CPA banner in every jurisdiction across Canada.

With two legislatures involved, precisely matching legislation was required in all the official languages: English, French, Inuktitut and Inuinnaqtun.

“Having to move significant legislative changes through two governments in tandem created challenges for CPA staff, volunteers, translators and the government lawyers actually drafting the legislation,” said Chris Schott, former president of the Society of Management Accountants legacy body. “Happily, that’s all behind us now. It feels to good to finally be a CPA.”

At the first meeting of the new board, Matthew Bannister, a former council member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut, was elected chair of the unified organization.


Two former leaders of CPA Canada have been named as members of the Order of Canada, one of the country’s highest honours.

Kevin Dancey, FCPA, FCA and former president and CEO of CPA Canada, was named for his dedication to unifying the accounting profession in Canada and for developing a national financial literacy program. Dancey is now CEO of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC).

Shelley Brown, FCPA, FCA, ICD.D and former co-chair of the CPA Canada board of directors, was named for her transformational leadership in accounting and for her lifelong work in the non-profit sector.

Both Dancey and Brown played important roles in the unification of many legacy accounting bodies under one CPA Canada banner.


At a December roundtable hosted by CPA Canada, CPAs and financial leaders discussed challenges and opportunities in transitioning to a low-carbon economy.

The roundtable was one of several consultations Canada’s Expert Panel on Sustainable Finance will make as it develops its final report and recommendations, which is due to be released in the spring. 

Senior executives from accounting firms, banks, pension funds, resource companies, law firms and other organizations delved into topics raised in an interim report that was published in October 2018 by Canada’s Expert Panel on Sustainable Finance.

Led by panel members Dr. Tiff Macklem, Dean, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto and chair of the Expert Panel on Sustainable Finance, and Barbara Zvan, chief risk and strategy officer for the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, the roundtable offered a wide-ranging discussion on sustainable finance. Talking points included viewing climate change issues through an accounting lens, making the case for climate-related financial disclosures, training business leaders, and more.

As business leaders CPAs are in a unique position to drive this change. To learn about the initiatives to engage the business community, read Canada’s sustainable finance movement: Is it on your radar? for more.