2019 Member Nominee
My diverse expertise lies in risk, and financial management; including business planning, strategic planning, decision support analysis, performance measurement, board reporting, policies & procedures, process controls and management consulting. For most my career, I’ve worked in an advisory/consultative roles in four of Canada’s top five banks, supporting senior executives as they forge their way forward, sometimes into the unknown, which can be daunting. I understand what that feels like, as often and in my own career, I’ve seen senior executives tested and have been tested myself by obstacle while exerting great effort to effectively develop and execute relevant strategies. My support of their investigation was a blend of my decision support expertise and extensive financial and risk management experience with a deep interest in leadership behavior and how it impacted results.
I also co-founded an internet-based company 3rd Sector Network Inc. (“3NInc.” or “3SN”) focused on providing specialized, affordable and easy to implement solutions to the non-profit sector, before which, I was the VP & Controller, Finance for Northern Financial Group of Companies (which included Northern Financial Inc., Northern Securities Inc. and Jaguar Financial Corporation). I’ve also held senior positions in CIBC: Senior Director –Operational Risk Measurement, Monitoring and Control (ORMC), Executive Director/Senior Finance Specialist – Wealth Management Finance, and Executive Director/Finance Controller – Global Finance, World Markets Finance; Scotia Bank, Scotia Capital: Senior Manager - Operations Methods Support, Budgeting and Business Analysis; BMO Nesbitt Burns: Manager - Financial Planning/Forecasting; and Royal Bank of Canada: Senior Financial Analyst, Financial Institutions and Trade.
I attended Pace University - Lubin School of Business, New York, holds an MBA in Multinational Finance & International Business, a BBA in Accounting & Information Systems and two Professional Certificates in International Marketing Management and Computer Information Systems, respectively.
All of the above gives me a unique perspective from which the CIRA board will benefit from new and different ideas. I understand the importance of good governance and good leadership. But more importantly, I have always been interested in the workings of the internet, its evolution and how it can be effectively kept secure as it evolves, and I am eager and willing to serve/participate/provide support in the development of governance policies that will help in that process. Regardless of how much I may know, my knowledge is limited and as such I see this as an opportunity to learn as much as I can about our Canadian community of users in order to be an effective member CIRA Board Member.
I am disciplined, I like people, I get along and work well with most and I believe I can make a difference.
Answers to mandatory questions:
1. Explain from your perspective what CIRA does and why it matters.
The Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA), a member-based not-for-profit organization, is the gatekeeper of the internet for all Canadian based websites (registered as .CA domains) whether in Canada or international. They develop and implement policies that support Canada’s internet community.
They educate Canadians as to the importance of registering Canadian websites as .CA domains; and on the process to register a .CA domain, from searching domain, choosing registrar, completing .CA domain name registration, to what to do after registration.
Through its Community Investment Program, CIRA supports innovative initiatives (local, national and regional) throughout Canada, working to ensure that the internet is secure and accessible to all Canadians, including the homeless, vulnerable and lower/limited income Canadians. Many of these projects also help to effectively deliver certain types of services, via the internet, to folks who are in need of such services. The CIRA seeks to ensure a better online Canada.
The CIRA’s role in promoting and managing the .CA registration is important for a number of reasons, including the following:
• as the .CA domain extension is the only domain name extension that identifies a website as 100% Canadian and helps to ensure that the required Canadian presence for individuals, organizations and businesses to register a .CA domain is met;
• Canadians can expect to experience a safe, secure and trusted internet through their .CA domain registration;
• There is a better chance to get the domain name one want as .CA domain names are more likely to be available as opposed to .COM names;
• Reinvesting directly back into the Canadian Internet community through the Community Investment Program from proceeds from every .CA sold, this ensures continued advancement;
• Members have a say and as such, they help shape the direction of the CIRA and advance the internet in Canada, and membership is open to all; and
• Based on research, Canadians prefer to visit and shop on .CA websites.
2. Why do you want to be on CIRA’s board of directors?
I believe that I have a unique perspective and new and different ideas from which the CIRA board will benefit. I understand the importance of good governance and good leadership. But more importantly, I have always been interested in the workings of the internet, its evolution and how it can effectively be kept secure as it evolves, and I am eager and willing to serve/participate/provide support in the development of governance policies that will help in that process. Regardless of how much I may know, my knowledge is limited and as such I see this as an opportunity to learn as much as I can about our Canadian community of users in order to be an effective member CIRA Board Member.
I am disciplined, I like people, I get along and work well with most and I believe I can make a difference. I want to be a part of something I believe is important.
3. What specific skills and experience do you have that makes you a qualified candidate for CIRA’s board of directors?
I’ve worked through the ranks of large and small organizations engaging at the most senior levels and spent many years developing various analytical reports to support strategic business decisions for many different initiatives, including financial management, risk management, and technology-related projects.
I’ve also developed governance policies in my over 30years of experience in finance, performance measurement and risk management. Much of my time was also spent managing change in systems, processes and controls; and proving ability to identify solutions and mobilize teams of people to implement both policy shaping and industry-leading methodology initiatives in partnership with diverse stakeholders.
4. What do you think are the top 3 challenges and opportunities facing CIRA in the next 3 to 5 years? What approach would you take to addressing these issues?
The following are the top 3 challenges facing CIRA in the next 3 to 5 years:
1. As technology advances and the use of the internet expand, it will become more difficult to keep the internet secure. CIRA will have to be more proactive in developing processes in hiring and retaining individuals with the appropriate expertise to deal with securing and protecting .CA domains. Those individuals have to be actively engaged in researching the risks relating to changes and advance in internet technology, and leading the charge to protect Canada’s internet.
2. As a result of the above, it will become more difficult to manage as internet governance will become more complex, which will require the participation of all stakeholders in order to develop policies regarding the use of, and the role the internet plays in the lives of Canadians – as there are many benefits: educational, economic, access to government services, etc.
3. Making the internet more accessible to more remote underserved poor communities. The vision for the internet has to be inclusive of and affordable to all Canadian and all Canadians must be equipped with the knowledge and skills they need in order to be able to participate – Canadians need to be appropriately educated regarding the use and benefits of the internet.