Canada's Most Powerful Women: Top 100 / Two National Bank officers make the list

Montreal, 22 November 2006 - 

Gisèle Desrochers, Senior Vice-President – Human Resources and Operations, and Patricia Curadeau-Grou, Senior Vice-President – Risk Management, both members of National Bank’s Executive Committee, have been ranked among Canada's Most Powerful Women: Top 100 by the Toronto-based Women's Executive Network (WXN).

Ms. Desrochers and Ms. Curadeau-Grou were recognized in the Corporate Executives category, which
spotlights women who hold the most senior positions at publicly traded and privately owned companies in Canada. Their commitment, leadership skills and contribution to achieving the Bank’s results are the key elements that set them apart from other candidates.

As Senior Vice-President – Human Resources and Operations, Ms. Desrochers has the dual responsibility of developing National Bank’s human resources policies and practices and optimizing its operational processes. Over the past four years, she and her team have improved the efficiency of the Bank’s administrative units while increasing customer satisfaction and employee engagement. Drawing on her strengths as a leader and innovator, Ms. Desrochers has instituted an array of programs to foster employee engagement and create a stimulating work environment. Her accomplishments include the introduction of a human resources management system which, coupled with a continuing education program, is designed to optimize the Bank’s performance.   This is the third time that Ms. Desrochers has received this honour since 2003.

Ms. Curadeau-Grou, Senior Vice-President – Risk Management, is one of only a few women to hold such a position in Canada. She oversees the strategic management of the operational, credit and market risks of National Bank and its subsidiaries. During the past few years, she has successfully established a strong risk management-oriented corporate culture and, together with her team, has introduced a robust and effective risk management framework. Today, National Bank compares favourably with the major Canadian banks in terms of risk management, and its achievements in this area are recognized by the financial markets.   Ms. Curadeau-Grou has also been recognized by the Women’s Executive Network three times since 2003.

“Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100"is an initiative of the Women’s Executive Network, an organization dedicated to the advancement and recognition of female executives, and the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario, which offers full-time undergraduate and graduate programs (MBA and PhD). The program celebrates Canada’s most accomplished women in their respective fields.

Photos of the ceremony, which was held on November 21 in Toronto, and the complete biographical notes for Ms. Desrochers and Ms. Curadeau-Grou are available on request. Please contact Denis Dubé for an electronic copy.

About National Bank of Canada
National Bank of Canada is an integrated group which provides comprehensive financial services to consumers, small and medium-sized enterprises and large corporations in its core market, while offering specialized services to its clients elsewhere in the world. The National Bank offers a full array of banking services, including retail, corporate and investment banking. It is an active player on international capital markets and, through its subsidiaries, is involved in securities brokerage, insurance and wealth management as well as mutual fund and retirement plan management. National Bank has close to $109 billion in assets and, together with its subsidiaries, employs 17,183 people. The Bank’s securities are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (NA:TSX). For more information, visit the Bank’s website at www.nbc.ca
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Information
(The telephone number provided below is for the exclusive use of journalists and other media representatives):

Denis Dubé
Director – Public Relations
National Bank of Canada
Tel.: (514) 394-8644