The Current and Future Impact of the CCIPA

With Jennifer Lau—President, CCIPA

The Canadian Chinese Insurance Professionals Association (CCIPA) has a rich history dating back to its establishment in 1988. Initially known as the Chinese Insurers Social Club of Toronto, it was officially incorporated under the current name in 1997. 

Standing as a beacon for diversity, equity and inclusion, the association stands to create a professional landscape that mirrors the rich diversity of Canada’s population. Their promise to create a workplace where individuals of diverse backgrounds feel valued, respected and included is a pivotal aspect of contemporary organizational culture, crucial in adopting DEI measures.

CCIPA President Jennifer Lau has been involved with the association since 2006. 

“Initially I attended events as a guest through my brokerage. In 2010, as a corporate member, I participated in socials and their education series and volunteered for their Christmas, Chinese New Year and golf events where I was master of ceremonies on many occasions. I was nominated as Education Director in 2020.” 

CCIPA is engaged in various events and initiatives aimed at networking, education and community involvement including the Annual Safe & Responsible Driving Campaign, Annual Golf tournament, quarterly dinners and Annual Christmas and Chinese New Year Gala. Making strides in community service, their charity golf event in 2022 supported Carefirst, a non-profit organization specializing in Chinese Senior Homes Support Services. 

While initiatives underscore the importance of giving back, they also emphasize the understanding that inclusivity extends beyond professional spheres to encompass community needs.

The Chinese New Year Gala, typically held in February, is an especially noteworthy event. 

“It’s important to acknowledge and respect the cultural traditions and practices of different communities. By celebrating Chinese New Year, CCIPA creates a more welcoming environment for brokers of Asian decent. This celebration involves traditional food, decorations and cultural performances to foster a sense of belonging and understanding among industry peers of different backgrounds and promote awareness and appreciation for diversity within the insurance community.”

IBAO formalized its partnership with CCIPA in 2022 to help amplify underrepresented voices including Chinese Canadian brokers.

“One of CCIPA’s most significant partnerships is with the IBAO. This collaboration is a strategic effort to promote diversity in the insurance industry, highlight events and create platforms for dialogue and collaboration. A very memorable experience from this partnership was participating in IBAOcon’23’s BIP Talk Intersectionality in Insurance: How Systemic Barriers are Affecting Recruitment Strategies. The many conversations that followed that panel discussion were meaningful and insightful.” 

Looking ahead, CCIPA wants to enhance its presence and collaboration with other industry associations. They’re developing a mentorship program and are looking to collaborate with community organizations involved in senior services to benefit their members with elderly parents.

CCIPA isn’t just an association, it’s a dynamic force driving positive change. By placing DEI at the forefront of their mission, CCIPA not only mirrors the rich tapestry of Canada’s cultural diversity but sets a transformative example for other organizations. Through their commitment to inclusivity, CCIPA shows that celebrating differences isn’t just the right thing to do — it’s a catalyst for innovation, growth and a stronger, more vibrant professional community.

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