Board of Directors
The Board of Directors is accountable for FPSC’s purpose, mandate, governance, and ultimate success. Working on behalf of the public, CFP® professionals and other stakeholders, the Board is responsible for establishing the organization’s ends and for monitoring its achievement of those ends, ensuring that FPSC’s purpose is realized. The Board is comprised of ten individuals with varied backgrounds, including five Certified Financial Planner® professionals, three public directors, one director at large, and one licensed financial planner from Quebec.
Board Development Committee
The Board Development Committee facilitates the effective functioning of the Board and enhances the quality of Board governance, communications, engagement and collaboration. The BDC establishes and assesses Director qualifications; identifies and recruits qualified Board, Officer, Committee and Panel candidates; measures Board and Director performance; oversees the orientation, continuing education and succession planning of Directors; and develops, reviews and revises Board Policies and By-laws.
The Compensation Committee is responsible for assisting the Board in fulfilling its oversight responsibilities to negotiate and administer the employment contract, set the compensation and conduct the annual performance review of the President & CEO; establish corporate Key Performance Indicators; review the organization’s HR program and total compensation philosophy; and ensure an adequate succession plan for the President & CEO is in place.
Conduct Review Panel
The Conduct Review Panel is an independent panel composed of CFP professionals and members of the public that reviews staff reports and directs the appropriate outcome of complaints, in the public interest. The panel’s membership reflects significant diversity of experience as well as geographic diversity. The panel convenes once every two months or as often as necessary, through a combination of in-person and conference call meetings.
Discipline Hearing Panel Roster
The Discipline Hearing Panel Roster is composed of CFP professionals and lawyers with diverse experience and national representation. These professionals—many whom bring compliance or experience in professional discipline—play a critical role in ensuring the integrity of the profession by enforcing the high professional and ethical standards embodied in the Standards of Professional Responsibility. Panel Roster Members serve on an as-needed basis on Discipline Hearing Panels and Appeal Hearing Panels and, on average, will serve on between one and ten panels per year.
Examination Item Writing
Examination Item Writers play a vital part in shaping the next generation of CFP professionals and FPSC Level 1® Certificants in Financial Planning. Item writers research and develop examination questions based on the FPSC Competency Profile, and review and provide feedback on questions developed by other item writers, on various scenarios and topics. Item-writing workshops are hosted two to three times each year, with each running from four to five days.
Crucial in ensuring exam quality, the Examination Panels are composed of Certified Financial Planner professionals who are experts in all areas of financial planning. They serve on one of two panels: one for the FPSC Level 1 Examination in Financial Planning or another for the CFP examination. The Panels are responsible for assessing the competence of candidates to certification; ensuring the exams are fair, valid and reliable; and setting the passing score for each examination. Panel members serve for a three-year term, which may be extended to a maximum of six consecutive years’ service.
Each June and December, Examination Scoring plays a key role in evaluating the knowledge and readiness of the next generation of CFP professionals. Scorers are trained by FPSC staff and then work within assigned teams of other CFP professionals from across Canada. They rigorously score a specific set of candidate responses in the CFP examination, a competency-based examination comprised largely of short-answer questions. Each session runs for a one-week period.
Examination Test Writing
Available to GTA residents, Examination Test-Writing volunteers ensure the validity of the content and development of the FPSC Level 1 exam and CFP exam. Volunteers write the exams in a mock test environment and, directly following the writing of the exam, are required to provide feedback on exam questions, structure, time provisions, format, exam day-procedures, and more. Sessions are held twice a year, with participation for the FPSC Level 1 exam for a half-day, and the CFP exam for a full day.
The purpose of the role of Fairness Commissioner is to provide an external point of escalation for complaints about FPSC’s processes that are not addressed by FPSC staff to the satisfaction of the complainant. This role, like an ombudsperson, provides for an impartial and unbiased third-party review of an FPSC process that was followed to reach the decision that led to the complaint. The Fairness Commissioner’s recommendations are not binding on FPSC, but there is an expectation that FPSC staff shall make efforts to implement any recommendations.
Finance and Audit Committee
The Finance and Audit Committee assists the Board of Directors in its oversight responsibilities as it relates to financial reporting and related compliance; external auditor selection, independence and performance; financial risk management; and monitoring and reviewing investment policies, management and performance.
CFP Professional Media Ambassadors are approached when FPSC gets requests for media interviews about the specifics of financial planning. Volunteers must be comfortable speaking with the media and need to be available on short notice. Media Ambassadors also provide expertise for FPSC’s FinancialPlanningForCanadians.ca website and other consumer-facing platforms.
Public Policy Ambassadors
Public Policy Ambassadors raise awareness with politicians across Canada about the importance of financial planning and the need to establish appropriate regulatory standards for all those who call themselves “financial planners.” Public Policy Ambassadors do this by meeting with their local MLAs or MPPs, educating them on the vitally important role professional financial planners play in the lives of their constituents, and explaining to them the lack of–and need for–appropriate regulatory standards for all “financial planners” in Canada.
Recognition and Awards Committee
The purpose of the Recognition and Awards Committee is to oversee the recognition of individuals through the Donald J. Johnston Award Program, the Fellow of FPSC™ Program, and the President’s List Program. This Committee is a staff-led committee under the purview of the President & CEO.
Recruitment Ambassadors visit college and university classrooms and career events across the country to discuss the day-to-day life of a CFP professional and offer a first-hand perspective on a career in financial planning to prospective candidates. Volunteers are added to a roster of available ambassadors that are called on to attend events in their area.
The Standards Panel oversees the standards of the profession including the FPSC Competency Profile, Projection Assumption Guidelines and the Standards of Professional Responsibility. An independent standing committee of the FPSC Board of Directors composed of public members and financial planners, the panel’s membership reflects significant diversity of experience as well as geographic diversity. The panel convenes three to four times per year, through a combination of in-person and conference call meetings.