Q&A with Cecile Baker, TD Securities
Tell us about yourself and what you do at TD Securities?
I head TD Securities’ (TDS) Leveraged Finance Communications, Media & Technology team, helping clients in those industries achieve their goals by providing them with debt financing solutions. I always liked numbers and learning about companies, and I’m very fortunate that a big part of my job is just that – learning about clients and their businesses. I also have the privilege of co-chairing TDS’ Women In Leadership (WIL) ERG. WIL is a group of enthusiastic, motivated women and men who are passionate about enabling women at TD Securities to succeed in whatever they choose to do. One of TDS’ core values is being able to bring your whole self to work, and WIL focuses a lot on that theme. Recently, we did a panel event on fertility issues, including two male colleagues as panelists, and the feedback was incredible. People were so grateful that we were discussing these issues, and that they would no longer have to shy away from telling their manager or their colleague what they might be experiencing.
Away from work, I have three children, a husband who has shared equally (and at times more!) in childrearing and home-life responsibilities even as he founded a start-up investment firm, and an adopted kitten.
Why are you raising your voice for women’s health at Women for Women’s?
Women tend to be the bedrock of their families, but too often, they don’t or can’t prioritize their health. I’m raising my voice so that those who cannot, or who are so focused on just surviving the here and now in this historic pandemic, can still be heard and their needs not forgotten.
In your professional career, what initiatives have you seen that have helped to create equity for women in the workplace?
In my career, opportunities for women’s advancement have come more from forward-thinking people than from formal programs. Having people with power use their power to help you, whether it is with client or senior management introductions, candid feedback, help brainstorming a solution, the opportunity to have a shot at being the one to present, or the one who deals directly with the client, has been most impactful. Whether women have access to formal or informal programs, my advice to them is take advantage of what is offered, and if what you need doesn’t exist, blaze your own trail because if you don’t, no one will do it for you.
Tell us more about why TD Securities has chosen to support Women’s College Hospital?
TD Securities is a longstanding supporter of Women’s College Hospital (WCH). We want to support the communities where we live and work, and we want to help make a lasting difference in people’s lives. Providing women with access to high quality health care is so fundamental to helping them achieve their full potential. We are honoured to be able to help WCH.