CPAC Gala Raises Funds for EDI and Honours Immigrant Professionals

With a theme of “Advancing Equity, Diversity and Inclusion,” the 2023 CPAC Gala raised funds for its research, training, and public education initiatives, to raise awareness of and combat anti-Asian racism and advance racial equity, diversity and inclusion.

The event also celebrated immigrant success through the presentation of the CPAC Professional Achievement Awards (PAA) and Young Achiever Award (YAA), which recognize the professional and community contributions of outstanding individuals and provide role models for members of the immigrant community.

CPAC, a multi-dimensional organization that has served the immigrant community for over three decades, is an association of professionals, a career service provider, and a developing think tank that provides research-based support for equity, diversity and inclusion and addressing anti-Asian racism.

The gala event, held on December 3, 2023 at the Hilton Toronto/Markham Suites Conference Centre & Spa, hosted about 400 guests including business and community leaders, supporters and corporate sponsors. It was also attended by elected officials from all three levels of government.

The recipients of this year’s PAA were police chief Yung-Kai Liu and medical professor Tianqing Peng.  Chief Liu is an award-winning police leader and a strong advocate for Human Rights. An immigrant from Taiwan, he was Ottawa Police Service’s first Asian police officer and Canada’s youngest police chief. He has been the chief of three police services – Gananoque, Cobourg and Treaty Three. He has been the president of the Indigenous Police Chief of Ontario (IPCO) and of the National First Nation Chiefs of Police Association (FNCPA), the first non-Indigenous person to hold these positions.  

Dr. Peng is a professor of medicine at Western University and a scientist at the Lawson Health Research Institute of London Health Sciences Centre. He has established himself as a world-renowned innovator in the field of cardiovascular science. He is a recipient of many research awards and has lectured worldwide. He has also been an inspiring mentor for the next generation of scientists, having supervised a total of 55 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows, many of whom have become medical and academic leaders.

The 2023 YAA recipient was Mr. Nam Pham, the youngest senior executive of a Vancouver-based high-tech company. As VP and then CFO of the company, Mr. Pham has shattered the ‘age-ceiling’ and made a step change in the under-representation of Asian Canadians in senior leadership roles. “One thing I always faced is having to put in 2-3x as much time and effort as others, only to get the same outcome or opportunities if ever,” said Pham. “As we look to the future, it is our duty to continue advocating for diversity and be champions of change, striving for a world where every person, regardless of their background, has the opportunity to thrive.”

CPAC gratefully acknowledges the generous donors and sponsors of the 2023 Annual Gala, particularly the Presenting Sponsor TD Insurance, Diamond Sponsor RBC, Platinum Sponsors CIBC, CPA Ontario, HSBC Bank Canada, and Scotiabank.

Donations to support CPAC’s equity and anti-racism initiatives can be made at:

More Gala photos can be downloaded at: 2023 CPAC Gala Photos

About CPAC
CPAC, formerly known as the Chinese Professionals Association of Canada, is a multi-dimensional organization that is an association of professionals, a career service provider, and a developing think tank. For over 30 years, CPAC has been serving the community of internationally educated professionals with their credential recognition, licensure, skills upgrading, cultural integration, employment, professional development and leadership development. The organization now has close to 31,000 members from various cultural and ethnic backgrounds with a wide range of professional training and skills. CPAC also facilitates, through CPAC Institute, the understanding and elimination of systemic racism and barriers to equity, diversity and inclusion, through research, education and training, with the goal of achieving the full potential of a diverse and inclusive Canadian society.