Mayor Jim Watson, with Alta Vista Ward Councillor Peter Hume, today presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Mrs. Suzanne Doerge on behalf of the City for All Women Initiative (CAWI) for her leadership and commitment as director and the organization’s outstanding work towards promoting gender equality and creating a more inclusive city.

CAWI is a collaborative group of women from diverse communities, organizations and academia working with municipal decision-makers to create a more inclusive city and promote gender equality. Women in the CAWI network develop their knowledge of how the city works while putting into practice skills such as facilitation, presentation, and communications. In turn, participants turn to their own unique communities to share what they have learned and engage others.

The City of Ottawa and CAWI collaborated on creation and implementation of the City’s Equity and Inclusion Lens, a systematic way of considering the concerns of the full diversity of residents in all the work of the city. It enables the City to operate in a manner that embraces the spirit of equity and inclusion in the development and implementation of policies, programs and services.

The Lens focuses on 11 groups who experience systemic barriers – aboriginal persons, women, persons with disabilities, visible minorities and GLBT individuals, as well as six additional groups who are at risk of exclusion – recent immigrants, francophones, youth, seniors, people living in poverty, low-income residents and rural residents.

Women in CAWI wear peach-coloured scarves when engaging with City Council as a way of saying that across their diversity, they share common concerns. They seek to open doors and leave them open so that others can walk through. For more information, please visit

The Mayor’s City Builder Award is a civic honour created by Mayor Watson to recognize an individual, group or organization that has, through outstanding volunteerism or exemplary action, demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to making our city a better place today and for the future. This may include lifelong service, outstanding acts of kindness, inspiring charitable work, community building or other exemplary achievements. Individuals, groups or organizations may be nominated by members of City Council or the public. The award is presented at the beginning of each City Council meeting.