The foundations of TMX Group date back to 1861 with the founding of the Toronto Stock Exchange, which at the time listed just eighteen stocks in total. TMX Group now deals with equities, derivatives, fixed income, and energy markets exchanges, including the Toronto Stock Exchange and a number of other Canadian markets. In March 2020, the Toronto Stock Exchange celebrated the thirtieth anniversary of the launch of the world’s first exchange traded fund (ETF), but the celebration was short-lived.
Just two weeks later, TMX was again in the headlines, not for an anniversary but for its commitment to helping provide for those in need during Canada’s own COVID-19 crisis. TMX Group donated $50,000 to Food Banks Canada, a charitable organization with national reach dedicated to helping Canadians living with food insecurity.
“At all times, but particularly in times of crisis, our country’s food banks play a crucial role in helping people in need,” said TMX Group interim CEO John McKenzie in a prepared statement. “In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, we encourage all Canadian organizations to band together to lend financial assistance to these and other vital support agencies.”
While TMX continues to lend itself to the coronavirus outreach efforts, the organization is still tasked with overseeing the vital markets that help keep worldwide economies functioning. And while TMX may be a Canadian institution, more than half of its revenue comes from outside of the country, creating a number of regulatory and financial management challenges for TMX’s legal team.
Those challenges fall under the purview of Senior Vice President and Head of Legal and Business Affairs, Enterprise Risk Management, and Government Cheryl Graden, who has been with TMX since 2013. In 2015, Graden was promoted from VP of cash and clearing to her present role, in which she runs a centralized legal team that oversees all of TMX’s businesses.
“We are very pleased to have Cheryl taking on this vital role within the organization,” said CEO Lou Eccleston in a prepared statement. “She has already had a distinguished career, and given her vast experience and skills, I know Cheryl is well prepared and ready to lead our legal team into the future.”
Since earning her promotion, enterprise risk management and some government relations work (particularly that based in the US) has also become part of her day-to-day. In addition, Graden serves as corporate secretary for the publicly traded company, as an officer for TMX Group Limited and its subsidiaries, and as a member of the TMX Group Executive Committee.
The SVP’s breadth and depth of experience have earned her a reputation as an expert in the energy and clearing space. She has spoken on the issue across North America, including the 14th National Forum on Energy Trading Compliance and Regulatory Enforcement Conference.
Despite the current global pandemic, TMX will likely be keeping Graden and her team busy for the remainder of 2020. TMX Group announced it will continue with plans to extend market hours and release products in 2020 and 2021, with an emphasis on the company’s derivatives business. It’s full steam ahead for the company founded during the American Civil War, and they won’t let coronavirus stand in their way.
“Cheryl is the consummate general counsel. She grasps the nuance of every legal and regulatory issue within the larger context of TMX’s business goals and objectives and is an exceptional strategist. She is a delight to work with.”
–Paul M. Architzel, Partner