New Board headed by Newcomers Gautam Nath, Chair and Tezbir Singh, Vice Chair, unveiled at MCIS' AGM
The event saw the largest turnout in the history of the organization with over 200 interpreters, translators and stakeholders coming together to acknowledge the efforts of our language professionals. In a first, we also live streamed the event to audiences around the world.
A new board was introduced, headed by incoming Chair Gautam Nath and Vice Chair Tezbir Singh. Both Gautam and Tezbir are recent immigrants from India who within a short span have not only ascended to senior management roles in their respective careers, but are also giving back to the community, heading MCIS, the largest non-profit Language Service Provider (LSP) in North America. While Gautam is Vice President at Balmoral Multicultural Marketing, Tezbir is a Director at CIBC's Chief Data Office.
Taking up the new position, Gautam said, "Having served as a volunteer on the Board for the past 6 years, it makes me proud to take up the leadership position as Chair today. MCIS has grown in leaps and bounds over the past years and has made a difference in the lives of many who experience language barriers in Canada. We aim to strengthen our social impact and help make Canada home for many coming to our shores each year."
Tezbir said, "I am excited to take on this new role at a time when MCIS is at a tipping point in its amazing journey. From the time I worked at MCIS as an intern to serving on multiple committees and the board, I have seen the organization grow and mature. The one thing that has remained constant is the drive to do good for society and to have a positive impact on the lives of the people we serve. This infectious motivation is not limited just to the leadership but permeates to every staff member, interpreter and translator; we intend to keep this fire burning to do more across our communities."
Taking an innovative approach, the new board will grow MCIS' revenue streams while also addressing ways to tackle and fulfill its important social impact objectives which include embedding language access in human rights, and lobbying for financial and policy support for language professionals who ensure the safety and wellbeing of those who require access to critical information and services.
The MCIS team presented awards to 8 interpreters who supervised 400 Arabic interpreters at various ports of entry in Toronto and Montreal. The Global Community Partner of the Year award went to Lifeline Syria which is now supporting MCIS' efforts to become community sponsor of a Syrian family. The Strategic Partner of the Year award went to Innoweave which over the past year helped MCIS identify its intended social impact as providing access for people with language barriers to critical information and services.
People walked into a jam-packed room to hear guest speakers Ezat Mossallanejad, Counselor and Policy Analyst with the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture; Sam Jisri, Founder and Executive Director of Syrian Active Volunteers; and Shelly Wu and Andersen Chu from the Tzu Chi Foundation. They all spoke about their work assisting Syrian refugees settle. Singer Chro Zand, an interpreter with MCIS, and Shahriyar Jamshidi on the Kamancheh entertained the audience with moving Syrian tunes.
Both retiring Chair Cambria Ravenhill and Executive Director Latha Sukumar spoke about MCIS' readiness to handle the scope and magnitude of the IFS project because of its training pipeline for interpreters which helped with a quick ramp up of its multilingual staff, several of whom spoke both official languages, and protocols to handle such a high profile engagement.
The IFS project also served as the impetus for MCIS to renew its vision and mission and to rethink itself as a global organization and a multilingual hub for the world, given its access to Toronto's rich and diverse multilingual human resources. In this vein, MCIS' soon to be launched Translator Training program will train over 500 individuals for free to become translators and offer their geography agnostic services within Canada and globally with the use of state of the art of online Translation Management tools.
MCIS Language Solutions is a non-profit social enterprise that provides interpretation, translation and transcription services in over 300 languages. We are open 24/7/365. Visit www.mcislanguages.com to know more about our services. Watch the AGM at http://www.youtube.com/