News East West
TORONTO: Former Scotiabank vice chairman Sarabjit Singh Marwah has become the first Sikh to be appointed to the Canadian Senate.
Toronto-based Marwah, who retired from Scotiabank in 2015, is among six people from Ontario who have been appointed to the Senate by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
In appointing him to the Senate, the Canadian Prime Minister has lauded Marwah for his efforts “to showcase the rich diversity of Sikh and South Asian art and culture.’’ Marwah is one of the founder-members of the Sikh Foundation of Canada that promotes Sikh culture and art among the diaspora community.
Marwah, who was born in Kolkata in 1952, did his his schooling from the city’s St Xavier’s School. He is also an alumnus of Delhi’s St Stephen’s College and the Delhi School of Economics and holds an MBA degree from the University of California in Los Angeles.
Marwah joined Scotiabank in Toronto as a financial analyst in 1978. Rising through the ranks, he went on to become the Chief Financial Officer (COO) of the bank in 1998. In 2002, he was made the bank’s senior executive vice president and chief financial officer. In 2005, he was elevated as the vice chairman and chief administrative officer. In 2008, he was re-designated as vice chairman and chief operating officer of the bank – the positions he held till his retirement in 2015.
He has served on the boards of many famous Canadian institutions such as the Toronto Star, the Toronto International Film Festival, the C.D. Howe Institute, the Royal Ontario Museum, the United Way Campaign, and the Hospital for Sick Children.
Marwah joins two other turbaned Sikhs – defence minister Harjeet Sajjan and science and innovation minister Navdeep Bains – in the Canadian parliament. Apart from Marwah, Ratna Omidvar is another Senator of Indian-origin in Canada.