BDO Tax Partner Jillian Walsh shares her journey of career growth in professional services

March 07, 2022

In honour of International Women’s Day 2022, Jillian Walsh, Tax Partner in our St. John’s office, sat down with Rachel Gervais to share her journey to becoming one of the firm’s newest partners.

Listen to her story as she explains how BDO’s culture has helped her to grow as a leader, the impact that mentorship has had on her career, and the most exciting part of her job.

Rachel Gervais, GTA Tax Service Line Leader and Private Wealth Practice Leader, interviews Jillian Walsh, Tax Partner.

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Video transcript

Rachel Gervais: Hello everyone and welcome. Thank you so much for joining us today in celebration of International Women's Day. And I have the privilege and honor of interviewing one of our new female partners, Jillian Walsh.

Jillian Walsh: Hi everyone. I'm Jillian Walsh, Canadian Tax Partner based in St. John's, Newfoundland.

Rachel Gervais: Could you have imagined many years ago when you started out your career that you would have a leadership role in tax at BDO?

Jillian Walsh: From a leadership perspective, I feel like my personality is to step up and speak up but I think in the last couple of years I've really gained experience through BDO's culture and instilling leadership skills as a manager and then being promoted to senior manager, and now partner. And I'm looking forward to instilling those leadership skills in my managers and senior managers and staff as well.

Rachel Gervais: That's excellent. Lots of opportunity to raise your voice here at BDO, for sure. How important is it, do you think, to have a mentor in your career and through your profession to grow as a leader?

Jillian Walsh: I really think that having that person to ground you, I've had great mentors and people while I took a year off work on maternity leave and then came back shortly thereafter to be admitted into partnership. People were praising me and or promoting me even in my absence. And that's what mentors are for.

Rachel Gervais: Can you think of any cool or interesting assignments or clients that you've worked on at BDO?

Jillian Walsh: From a tax perspective we do lots of cool and exciting work. For me, the most interesting part of my job is working with our clients and assisting with their needs. We work with many different interesting people from actors to Bitcoin mining companies and clients across all different industries and at different stages of their business life, whether that be a startup company or assisting owners in exiting and setting up for retirement. In my opinion, the coolest part of my job is the relationships that we build with our clients. BDO provides an advisory role not just tax and most of our clients are looking for that business advisor and we can certainly be that for them.

Rachel Gervais: Thank you so much, Jill, for spending the time with me today. We did this virtually from coast to coast. It's great to celebrate you. It's great to celebrate International Women's Day.

Jillian Walsh: Thanks so much, Rachel. Thanks for interviewing me and it's been an honor celebrating International Women's Day.

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