Being Your Authentic Self

I’m very honoured to have been selected as one of WXN’s Top 100 Winners for 2018 — and with such illustrious company! To my fellow winners, a heartfelt congratulations. To members of WXN and beyond, a sincere thank you for your support and encouragement throughout the years. While I accept this award graciously, I recognize that we all contribute to each other’s success.

There are ample stories I could share of my professional journey, some funny, some not so humorous, and certainly a boatload of advice. But the one piece of guidance I would like to share is the notion of being your authentic self and finding the passion that drives you.

For me, my passion has always been technology. As a young girl, my mother encouraged me to enter what was then a male-dominated field of study, because I had a genuine curiosity and spark about how things connected in our world, how technology worked to make our lives simpler and faster. Now, with over 35 years of technology and management experience behind me, I recognize that that was the pivotal moment in my life – when someone saw my passion and encouraged me to move forward regardless of what obstacles were present.

As a senior executive, I now have a responsibility to provide the same level of encouragement, inspiration and support to young people looking to own their passion — hopefully in the cyber security space! Having said that, I encourage young people who have a flair for technology to get into cyber security, right now. Companies worldwide are facing a serious talent shortage when it comes to cyber professionals, with more than 1.5 million people needed in this industry by 2020, according to the Information and Communication Technology Council. Currently, women represent only 20 percent of that statistic, so I believe that there is tremendous opportunity for young women in this industry.

I do believe that following your passion and living your authentic self leads to success. We have 100 women [in 2018] who are living proof of that.

Thank you again for this incredible recognition.

Laurie Pezzente, Senior Vice President & Chief Security Officer, Global Cyber Security for Royal Bank of Canada, is a Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner in the HSBC Corporate Executives Category for 2018. She has been recognized for her senior position in a Canadian public company.

Do you know a woman in a senior position in Canada in a publicly-traded or privately owned company who deserves to be recognized for her achievements? Are you a female corporate executive? Click here to nominate today! It’s free! Deadline to nominate is June 17.

Looking for more information about Top 100? Visit our website to learn all about the awards!

 


About Laurie:

Laurie Pezzente is Senior Vice President & Chief Security Officer, Global Cyber Security for Royal Bank of Canada.

Pezzente, Laurie portrait

2018 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner
HSBC Corporate Executives

Laurie Pezzente leads the Global Cyber Security team as SVP and CSO. In partnership with the organization’s executive leadership teams, she directs the development of effective cyber strategies to assess and mitigate risk globally, manage crises and incidents, maintain continuity of operations, and safeguard the organization. She is responsible for deploying state-of-the-art technology solutions and innovative security management techniques to protect RBC, employee and client data, while ensuring appropriate protections are in place to maintain compliance with regulatory and policy requirements.

Laurie represents the bank’s position on cyber security and risk management to the Board, senior executives, customers, external partners, and government agencies. She is accountable for information security risk and global security operations, including incident response, and operational risk management across the technology & operations portfolio, and ultimately, for building RBC’s resiliency and protection against cyber-attacks.

Laurie Pezzente is an IT professional with over 25 years of IT experience, managing budgets in excess of $500 MM, with a solid track record of building strong relationships, encouraging creativity and excellence. Laurie has extensive experience in IT application development, Information Security, IT GRC and process improvement.

As a former CISO at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), Laurie was responsible for IT risk, policy and standard design, implementation and governance for Enterprise IT security. As a senior executive, Laurie represented the banks security position to the Board, senior executive leaders and external government agencies on issues regarding IT security and overall IT risk management. She was responsible for assessing overall security risk, developing strategies and leading programs to mitigate specific areas of vulnerability, and providing risk assessment of 3rd party activities with significant IT components. Laurie is recognized as a thought leader in IT GRC with execution expertise in Information Security, SOX, Disaster Recovery, IT Governance and Technology standards.

Laurie lives in Oakville with her husband and two sons.

Winning this Award Provides a Platform

Amanda HobsonFirst impressions of the big WIN

This is an incredible honour. Being named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women is a pretty big deal. It “puts you on the map”, opens doors and provides opportunities.

I was quite surprised when I first learned of my nomination for this award. I think it was the word “powerful” that threw me off. It is not a word I would have used to describe myself. After getting over the initial shock, I felt immense pride and joy. Then my mind turned to what I will do with this honour, how I will recognize it and share it with others.

So how will I pay it forward?

Winning this award provides a platform, an opportunity to celebrate and shine the light on the success of others. At the recent Fortune Most Powerful Women International Summit, someone said, “Once you make it to the top, don’t forget to send the elevator back down.”

The first thing I’m going to do is put forward a nomination of my own for [this] year. It took me about 2 seconds to decide whom I would nominate. (Don’t ask – it’s a secret!) I know many worthy candidates and I’m so excited to support them and share the pride and joy I’ve felt from my own experience. There is so much for me to be thankful for and I have come to realize that the best way to show my gratitude is to pay it forward. I encourage others to submit a nomination for [this] year as well.

Secondly, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate and celebrate some exceptional women I know on their own recent successes:

  • Sarah Fotheringham – my dear friend has been invited to the United Nations Headquarters in New York City by the UN Programme on Youth to present her research on women’s social enterprise and inform the upcoming UN Youth Strategy focusing on youth social entrepreneurship. Talk about impactful work…!
  • Gwen Hardy – Managing Partner of Elettra Communications – the Public Relations brain behind Kennedy Stewart’s mayoral race for the City of Vancouver (always behind the scenes, Gwen is an unsung hero if there ever was one).
  • Crystal Prystai – VP and Corporate Controller, Teck – one of the most brilliant accounting minds I’ve ever worked with (speaking of unsung heroes) just promoted into the senior ranks of the largest diversified mining company in Canada (in an undeniably male-dominated industry).

I’d like to give a shout-out to WXN – an incredible organization that brings women together to share in each others’ journeys and successes. It is truly an honor to become a part of this community. The best part of winning this award is the opportunity to meet so many wonderful and inspiring people. Thank you, WXN!

Finally, I would like to recognize my husband, Wayne, and the rest of my incredible support network of family, friends and colleagues. I cannot even begin to describe the love and support I have had along my journey and I am so grateful for you all.

This experience has been humbling, enriching and exciting. Most of all, it has been inspiring, and I can’t wait to pay it forward.

Amanda Hobson, CFO and VP, Finance and Corporate Services for BC Lottery Corporation (BCLC), is a Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner in the Public Sector Leaders Category for 2018. She has been recognized her hard work and leadership while holding a senior position in one of  Canada’s public sector organizations.

On November 21 we will honour women in many categories, including Public Sector Leaders and Intact Professionals.  The Intact Professionals Award celebrates recognizes women who are professionals in practice and play a leadership role within their organizations. Click here to learn more about Top 100 and don’t forget in 2020 to nominate a powerful female or even yourself!

 


About Amanda:

Amanda Hobson is Chief Financial Officer and Vice President, Finance and Corporate Services for BC Lottery Corporation (BCLC).

Hobson, Amanda portrait

2018 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner
Public Sector Leaders

Amanda is a senior finance professional with more than 20 years of diverse experience in large and international private, public and public sector organizations. Recognized as 2017 BC CFO of the Year in the Emerging Leader category by Business in Vancouver and CPABC, Amanda is passionate about inspiring and motivating others to achieve strategic objectives and organizational excellence. Amanda currently serves on the boards of the Royal Inland Hospital Foundation and the Interprovincial Lottery Corporation.

Anything worth achieving takes a lot of hard work, energy and passion

Tina Jones imageI never saw myself as breaking new ground; I saw myself chasing ideas.

Success for me is a combination of ideas and vision, passion and plain old hard work, a continual reach for excellence and a constant openness to be challenged. I believe my award to the Top 100 list is a recognition of my work in building relationships and teams of great people.

One idea I chased early on was to build a great wine store. Banville & Jones Wine Company was new territory. I assembled a team of smart, energetic people and the ideas started to flow—ideas about great service to retail and restaurant customers, and ideas to nurture our city’s wine culture. Then came wine appreciation courses. From there, with team members willing to reach the highest international standards, came accredited wine and drinks programs. And because everyone loves wine, travel, and sharing stories, we developed our award-winning magazine, The Cellar Door.

Another idea I chased was a vision that Manitoba could be a centre of excellence for hockey education. Again it was new ground, but with Brad Rice we imagined a new concept and built a leadership team. From there came a hockey academy; new approaches in training and supporting athletes; collaboration with great schooling and focused programs. Now we have launched a $20 million construction project as the infrastructure for these great ideas.

And Winnipeg’s Green Carrot Juice Company was a vision built from a conversation with my friend Obby Khan. We chased the idea of a fresh juice concept by building another team. Today Green Carrot has several locations, including the Winnipeg International airport where we offer a fresh juice, whole food option to travelers.

My father, whose entrepreneurial spirit brought him tremendous success, taught me that anything worth achieving takes a lot of hard work, energy and passion. His inspiration has helped me launch these great ideas.

All this work is valuable only in a world where people matter. My two fabulous children have been central in my life, their education and activities very important. My Mom was such a support to me that I knew I needed to be a support to them. They are now adults, contributing and chasing their own ideas.

We also build a world that matters by contributing to our community and by touching lives through philanthropy work. In supporting community projects through my business and my own volunteer work I have imagined new approaches and new concepts and worked to make them happen. Serving as Chair of the Health Sciences Foundation Board of Directors has been especially rewarding. I was humbled to be named Volunteer Fundraiser of the Year in Manitoba, and to receive the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Manitoba for this work.

Being recognized as one of Canada’s Top 100 most powerful women is both humbling and hard to imagine. To be nominated, and then named, to this small list of amazing women is an honour. My colleagues in every facet of my life, and my family, have helped me achieve it: we all talk about “team work” but I know we simply cannot achieve great things alone. To carry this honour forward I will be even more driven to motivate and mentor other young women and men, to build great relationships, and to continue imagining a better world.

Tina Jones, CEO of Banville & Jones Group of Companies, is a Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner in the CIBC Trailblazers & Trendsetters Category for 2018. She has been recognized as a woman first in her field that has made a great contribution to Canadian society.

Do you know a female trailblazer who deserves to be recognized for her contribution to Canadian society? Are you a trendsetter that’s made an impact on Canada? Click here to nominate today! It’s free! Deadline to nominate is June 17.

Looking for more information about Top 100? Visit our website for all the ins and outs!

 


About Tina:

Tina Jones is CEO of Banville & Jones Group of Companies

Jones, Tina portrait

2018 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner
CIBC Trailblazers and Trendsetters

Tina Jones is a highly successful Manitoba entrepreneur, community contributor and philanthropist. She is owner of Banville & Jones Wine Company and principal of Wine & Drinks College Manitoba (WDCM), which have grown into the largest private wine store and destination wine school in Manitoba. Tina has reached for the highest international standards, creating opportunities for her staff to pursue studies and accreditation at WDCM and through the Wine and Spirit Education Trust, the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers, and the Wine Scholar Guild. She has expanded the impact of wine education to develop the award-winning magazine, The Cellar Door.

Tina is also an active partner in The Rink Training Centre, providing innovative individual skill development to all levels of hockey players. Tina is also a pioneer in Winnipeg, with the first Canadian Sports School Hockey League teams, The RHA Nationals. These teams bring unparalleled hockey training along with fine schooling to elite players from across Canada and the USA. The Rink’s success is reflected in a major $20 million Center of Excellence construction project, with completion date scheduled for early 2019.

Tina’s work also extends to partnership in Winnipeg’s popular Green Carrot Juice Company, a concept for fresh, cold-pressed juices that has grown exponentially since its inception in 2014.

Tina’s energy and creativity have also made her a tireless community builder. Her fundraising work with dozens of charitable organizations have helped raise tens of millions of dollars on our community. She currently serves as Chair of the Board of the Health Sciences Centre Foundation Board of Directors. The Association of Fundraising Professionals Manitoba has recognized her contributions as Volunteer Fundraiser of the Year 2017, and the University of Manitoba has honoured her with the Distinguished Alumni Award 2018.

Ms Jones inheirited a strong entrepreneurial spirit from her father Pierluigi Tolaini, who immigrated from Italy and built (from one truck) the largest privately held transport company in Canada. Pierluigi fulfilled a lifelong dream to create great Italian wine, and Tina works with him to build the Tolaini wine brand. For Tina, success is built on vision, hard work, building great teams and continually reaching for excellence.

I come to work to maximize opportunities for our learners

Wow, what great news to hear that WXN has honored me as a Top 100 Most Powerful Women in the PwC Public Sector Leaders category. But this recognition is really for our learners, our community partners, and our donors, who make the NorQuest community such an invigorating and life changing place. Thanks to you!

Every day I come to work to maximize opportunities for our learners. Learners who represent the world. Our indigenous learners, our regional residents, and other learners who represent 131 countries speaking 77 languages. Learners who step away from work and family obligations to enhance their knowledge and their skills so that they can contribute to building a better, stronger, more inclusive community. Who wouldn’t want to work in this environment? Everyday spending time at NorQuest College is a privilege, and a place where I continue to learn.

How do I feel about the WXN honor? Well, first I would like to personally thank my direct team who secretly completed the nomination and kept a secret – a high risk maneuver for sure! Seriously though, I am honored, humbled, excited, and so very grateful. Thank you!

Jodi

Dr. Jodi Abbott, ICD.D, President & CEO of NorQuest College, is a Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner in the Public Sector Leaders Category for 2018. She has been recognized her hard work and leadership while holding a senior position in one of  Canada’s public sector organizations.

Do you know someone who deserves to be recognized for her personal and business contributions as an female public sector leader in Canada? Are you a leading female in the public sector? Click here to learn more about our Top 100 Nominations and how to nominate yourself or someone else. It’s free to nominate!

 


About Dr. Abbott:

Dr. Jodi L. Abbott, ICD.D is President and CEO of NorQuest College

Abbott, Dr. Jodi L portrait

2018 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner
Public Sector Leaders

Dr. Jodi L. Abbott is the President and CEO of NorQuest College. Since joining the college in 2010, Dr. Abbott has more than doubled NorQuest’s student population through expanded credit and non-credit programming; unveiled innovative partnerships including the Alberta Indigenous Construction Career Centre, the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation Hospitality Institute, the NorQuest College ATB Agency, and the Colbourne Institute for Inclusive Leadership; and enhanced NorQuest’s brand recognition. Under Dr. Abbott’s leadership, NorQuest College opened a stunning new campus addition, the Singhmar Centre for Learning, for fall term classes in 2017.

Dr. Abbott is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization and currently chairs the Edmonton Metropolitan Region Board. She was recently the Chair of Edmonton’s Health City and served as a trustee of the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation. In addition, she has a longstanding involvement with figure skating, including as an Olympic judge in 2010 and 2014. In 2011, Dr. Abbott was included in the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women in Sport and Physical Activity’s list of Canada’s top-20 most influential women in sport. In 2013, she received the University of Alberta Alumni Honour Award in recognition of her international work with figure skating and for championing improved health-care services. In 2015, she was named as one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women by the Women’s Executive Network (WXN), receiving the Trailblazers and Trendsetters Award for women who are either the first in their field or have made a major impact on it. In 2016, Dr. Abbott was named among the Top 50 Most Influential People in Alberta by Alberta Venture magazine, and she received the first-ever District 99 Toastmaster Award in Leadership and Communication. Most recently, she was named a Global Woman of Vision.

www.norquest.ca

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There is Strength in Vulnerability

Angela Liddon casualReceiving one of WXN’s Canada’s Most Powerful Women Awards coincided with a time in my life when I felt my least powerful. As a mom of two young kids, I’d been struggling with postpartum health issues for a long time and pushed through because I thought how I felt was normal. I honestly didn’t know if I would ever feel like myself again—I was anxious, tired (yet unable to truly relax), and dealing with a long list of other physical symptoms. On the professional side of things, I had a lot of self-doubt and indecision as a business owner. I didn’t know whether I should push through this challenging time, scale back and take a break, or hire more help. At one point, I even doubted whether I should continue as I felt like I wasn’t able to juggle my various hats as a business owner and entrepreneur.

Angela Liddon casual 2When I found out that I’d been selected as one of WXN’s Top 100 Entrepreneurs, I was floored. Without a doubt, this meaningful recognition helped me find my strength and remember the potential I’ve always had within myself. Reading other women’s stories has reminded me that there is strength in vulnerability and that we all have times along our journey that nearly take everything out of us. Going forward, I’ve been even more mindful of sharing my struggles so other women (and men) know that they aren’t alone, and know how important it is to take time for our personal health and let go of perfectionism. Thank you WXN for giving us a platform to share our diverse stories and for supporting and encouraging women all across Canada. It’s truly an honour to be included!

Angela Liddon casual 3Angela Liddon, award winning author and business owner, is a Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner in the Entrepreneurs Category for 2018. She has been honoured as an female owner and operator of a thriving business in Canada.

On November 21 we will honour women in the BMO Entrepreneurs category – females being recognized for their personal and business contributions as entrepreneurs in Canada. Click here to learn more about Top 100 and don’t forget in 2020 to nominate yourself or another powerful female!

 


About Angela:

Angela Liddon is President of Oh She Glows

Liddon, Angela portrait

2018 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner
Entrepreneurs

Ten years ago, Angela Liddon founded Oh She Glows—a destination for energizing plant-based recipes, stunning food photography, and inspiration for healthy living. Since then, she’s become the award-winning author behind The New York Times and Globe and Mail bestselling cookbooks The Oh She Glows Cookbook and Oh She Glows Every Day. In 2014, The Oh She Glows Cookbook was selected as Indigo’s Book of the Year. Most recently, Oh She Glows Every Day took home gold at the 2017 Taste Canada Awards for Health and Special Diet Cookbook of the year. Building on the success of her wildly popular cookbooks, Angela launched The Oh She Glows Recipe App in 2016. It has been downloaded over 200,000 times globally, is regularly selected as Apple’s App of the Day, and is continually lauded for its beautiful design and Angela’s mouthwatering food photography.

In 2009, Angela founded OhSheGlows.com to share her love of vibrant, wholesome, and delicious cooking with the world. Her blog continues to receive millions of visitors each month, readers around the globe praising Angela’s ability to create recipes beloved by vegans and omnivores alike. Angela’s work has been featured in local and international publications such as VegNews, O: The Oprah Magazine, Fitness, The Kitchn, Self, Shape, The National Post, The Guardian, Glamour, The Telegraph, barre3, T.O.F.U., and Best Health, among others. She has also won several major writing and blogging awards, including VegNews’s Best Vegan Blog 2012, 2014, and 2015; Taste Canada’s Health & Special Diet Food Blog 2017; Chatelaine’s Hot 20 under 30 award; and Food Buzz’s Best Veg Blog and Best Overall Blog.

Angela lives in Oakville, Ontario with her husband Eric and their two children.