The role of university secretary is crucial and misunderstood. I mentor university secretaries to help them navigate the dynamics of their roles.

Winter – 2023
Cheryl received the Contributor Award from CAUBO and Kelman & Associates for an article written in University Manager
“Supporting Effective Governance – Tips for Excellent Board Presentations”


 “I am so pleased that my article was relevant and interesting to the readers of University Manager.”

Cheryl A. Foy

Cheryl A. Foy

Cheryl Foy believes that good governance is foundational to organizational effectiveness. She has worked in governance for twenty years having held General Counsel and Corporate Secretary executive roles in the public and private technology company context and within higher education. She is a thought leader in strategy and governance.

Cheryl is an advocate for good governance and the development of the in-house legal profession. She is a founder and the Past President of Women General Counsel Canada, a national organization established by female general counsel who recognize that the role of GC is a unique leadership role bridging law and business and also that women in the GC role have common challenges and opportunities.

Board Service: 

Cheryl has recently joined the Board of Project Tembo. She has  served on a number of national not-for-profit boards (Canadian Bar Association, Canadian Corporate Counsel Association, and Women General Counsel Canada).  Most recently, Cheryl served as Investment Committee Chair, and Board member for the Canadian Universities Reciprocal Insurance Exchange, and a founding board member for Ontario Tech Talent, a for-profit, wholly-owned subsidiary of Ontario Tech University, delivering skills training.

Writing and Speaking: Cheryl is a book author and published magazine writer (Canadian Lawyer In-house, University Affairs) and is invited to speak regularly on all aspects of university governance, the role of inhouse counsel, and legal ethics.

Awards: Cheryl was awarded the Women’s Law Association of Ontario, General Counsel Award in 2020 for her leadership and her commitment to the success of women in law.

Education: Cheryl holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Studies, and a Bachelor of Laws, from Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario and was called to the Ontario Bar in 1995.

Cheryl’s Values

Acknowledgement and Commitment to Reconciliation

My home and place of work are both on the lands of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.  I am thankful to be welcomed on these lands.  The lands are covered under the Williams Treaties.  The lands are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation.  I acknowledge these lands out of respect for Indigenous Nations.  I acknowledge the poor treatment of the Indigenous peoples who cared for these lands long before I arrived.  I identify as an individual who wants to move forward as a friend and ally to Indigenous peoples.  I am committed to working to advance Reconciliation.

Commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

I am committed to advancing equity, diversity and inclusion in the work that I do.  I approach this commitment with an understanding of my own privilege and an openness to learning from people within equity-seeking groups to be a better ally.


The Book

This book introduces you to the aspects of university governance that are unique. It’s a book intended to help you learn about the sector more quickly so that you can contribute more fully and feel more engaged.

Contact Cheryl to Discuss Your Governance Questions