Getting to Know Your Trillium Council – Cathy Cummings

CSAE Trillium Network Council represents members across our regional network. This series of articles will allow you to get to know the volunteers who make up the 2021 Council. Each Council member was asked to answer questions about their professional and personal lives – to share a little of themselves. Our fourth Council profile is of Cathy Cummings.

Cathy Cummings is the Executive Director of the International Alliance of ALS MND Associations. This role perfectly combines her passion for association leadership and a cause close to her heart, people living with ALS.  Connect with Cathy on Linked at  or follow her on twitter at

When asked about her motivation to join the Council, Cathy stated:

I have worked at all levels of the CSAE on committees, boards etc. but my favourite area to contribute to is programming. I saw an opportunity to be more involved at that level.

When asked what she wished all members knew about the Council, Cathy responded:

How approachable everyone is. Before I joined the council, I was a bit intimidated by some of the members and now that I know them better that has disappeared.

Other than Council, Cathy is also involved in the following committees:

Currently, The CAE Task Force, the PD Task Force, and Chair of the Trillium PDX Committee. Last year, I was also involved in the Leaders Forum and the Membership Task Force.

When asked who inspires you, Cathy had the following to say:

This is going to sound really hokey but my three kids are a huge inspiration to me. My kids are much better humans than I was at that age. They are thoughtful about the issues of the day, hard working and give me solid hope for the future of our planet! I learn from them every day.  

When asked what is something people would be surprised to know about you, Cathy had the following to say:

Although I have a great sense of humour, I can’t retell jokes – I am totally hopeless at it! One time my husband said “What concert cost 45 cents to attend” and the right answer is “50cent featuring Nickleback”. I tried to tell this to my kids at dinner and I got the question right but the punchline I delivered was “50cent, with 5 cents back for change” This was almost 10 years ago and my family still teases me about this.

Cathy’s proudest accomplishment is:

Introducing the Certified In-House Counsel (CIC.C) certification program which was a joint program of the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association (CCCA) and the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. This program was conceived, designed and launched successfully in 6 months and is still very popular today. The program is designed to give in-house lawyers the skills and knowledge they need to be successful strategic business partners within their organizations.

When Cathy has 30 minutes of free time, she like to:

Do genealogy research about our family trees. Since the beginning of the pandemic when I have had more time, I have found countless new cousins all over the world and connected with them through Zoom or Facebook.

Cathy is a dedicated passionate volunteer with CSAE and it has been a pleasure getting to know her a little better. We look forward to ‘introducing’ you to the other members of the Trillium Network Council over the next several issues of FORUM.