When Nancy Golding KC TEP attended a lunch meeting over 26 years ago, she never imagined she would one day become worldwide Chair of STEP. To celebrate the beginning of this year’s STEP Council elections, we asked her to tell the story of how she became so involved in STEP and the message she has for other members during the elections.
As we slip from summer into fall in Canada, and from winter into spring for others, it is time for STEP’s Council elections. I am hoping each and every member will consider getting involved, either by standing for election, championing someone else to, or exercising your vote.
Council is STEP’s elected governance body with representatives from regions around the globe. It is the direct voice to the Board of Directors from regions and branches, and is an integral part of STEP’s governance, assisting in keeping STEP connected to individual members.
Several issues can only be decided by Council votes, and its input is obtained on a wide variety of strategic and governance matters. The majority of Council members also serve on committees at the core of STEP as a member-led organisation. These include the Professional Development, Professional Standards, Public Policy, Governance and Branch Development Committees.
I recall my first time attending a Council meeting as a newly elected representative of STEP Canada. I was in awe of the number of people as well as the diversity of their origins and backgrounds. It was the first time I really understood what a truly global organisation STEP is.
Now, each time I attend a meeting, I marvel at the 22,000 members practising across approximately 100 countries, with branches spread throughout more than 50 countries/territories.
COVID made it harder for Council to be fully engaged. However, in July attendance was excellent for our first in-person Council meeting since the end of 2019. Things can only get better as we emerge into the newly imagined world.
I first became involved with STEP over 26 years ago when I attended my first lunch meeting in Calgary, Canada. I could not have dreamt I would one day be global Chair of STEP. I was happy to attend local branch meetings and learn about new topics in the trust, tax and wills areas. STEP represented a networking and educational opportunity.
When I became chair of STEP Calgary, I was automatically on the Board of STEP Canada. I realised the reach of STEP within my country and region. Through my involvement on the STEP Canada Board, I became aware of STEP’s global operations and again realised there was even more to STEP than my little world. I could not wait to become more involved on the international level with STEP. The one constant has been that STEP has always represented a networking and educational opportunity.
Over the years, I have met many interesting people and learned many new things that have made me a much better and well-rounded practitioner than I ever would have been without my involvement in STEP. I have also felt privileged to be involved with the shaping of STEP for the future and hope that some of the initiatives I have worked on while on the Board will ensure that STEP remains an inclusive, dynamic, vibrant and relevant organisation for future generations of practitioners.
Coming out of the disruptive last two years will present new challenges and opportunities. Now is the time for each of you to consider your future role at STEP. Becoming involved as a Council representative for your region just might be the next step and I hope you will give it thorough consideration. STEP needs active and engaged volunteers from diverse cultural, educational and professional backgrounds who have unique perspectives to lead it into the future.
You can read more about the Council Elections 2022, including the full details on eligibility to stand for and vote in the elections on our website: https://www.step.org/about-step/step-elections-2022
Nancy Golding KC TEP is a Director of Trust & Estate Law at Moodys Private Client Law in Calgary, Canada and worldwide Chair of STEP.