Claudette McGowan

Award Nomination:

Science and Technology


Bank of Montreal


Chief Information Officer, Bank of Montreal Enterprise Technology Employee Experience




Claudette McGowan is an award-winning, globally-focused Information Technology power-house, with close to two decades of success in leading digital transformations. Claudette’s passion for innovation and learning drives her to optimise infrastructures and enhance service experiences.

Claudette’s multi-faceted IT career encompasses diverse market verticals:

• Augmenting the healthcare IT systems at Wellesley Hospital;

• IT enhancements at Metropolitan Toronto Police Services;

• Innovations with Deloitte’s technology management team.

In addition to fulfilling the technology needs for 3,500 employees at the new BMO Urban Campus – opening in 2021 – Claudette is driven to create solutions for heightened community engagement, along with up-to-the-minute technology for BMO’s colleagues.

Since joining BMO in 2000 as a help desk manager, Claudette’s rise and achievements at BMO Financial Group have been exemplary:

• As a vice president in Technology and Operations, Claudette has led 1000+ IT professionals in the planning, engineering and support of workplace technologies across all BMO branches and office towers in North America;

• Developed a multi-year workplace technology strategy, to benefit BMO’s 45,000 employees;

• Designed and launched BMO’s first-ever Women in Technology affinity group to support women at BMO, and increase the number of women on Boards and in Executive roles;

• Promoted to Chief Information Officer, BMO Enterprise Technology Employee Experience.

A mother of two, Claudette has an unwavering “growth mindset” and a commitment to the community, evident in her initiatives to give back:

• In partnership with First Book Canada et al., Claudette founded the Black Arts and Innovation Expo (BAIE), to celebrate Black History Month, as well as to promote diversity, inspire excellence and showcase outstanding innovators;

• Played a pivotal role in launching the first innovation centre in Aurora, Ontario;

• Authored five books to teach children digital and financial literacy;

• Co-Executive Sponsor of the Black Professional Network.

Claudette’s educational achievements have provided a sound foundation for her accomplished career:

• Master of Business Administration – Athabasca University;

• Bachelor of Arts – Lakehead University;

• Certified Change Management Practitioner (Prosci Canada);

• Business Coach from CTA – International Coach Federation;

• Masters Certificate in IT Management – University of Ontario Institute of Technology;

• Masters Certificate in Project Management – York University / Schulich School of Business;

• Digital Buildings – Harvard University.

Claudette has already been recognized for some of these astounding achievements:

• Recipient of the Green4Good Visionary award – 2014;

• Recognized as one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada by Women’s Executive Network (WXN) – 2018;

• CBC: She Means Business Panelist – 2018;

• Keynote Speaker at Elevate Talent – 2018;

• Keynote Speaker at Change Leadership Conference – 2018 and 2019;

AND in the first short 6 months of 2019, Claudette was also:

• Keynote Speaker at the UNITED NATIONS! – Science, Technology and Innovation Forum;

• Honoured by AdWeek Magazine as a Toronto Brand Star, in celebration of the city's most innovative, creative and forward-thinking leaders;

• Keynote Speaker: City of Toronto, Digital Literacy Week;

• Financial Services Industry Panelist – Gartner Conference;

In addition, Claudette also held a multitude of roles at the Collision 2019 Conference:

• Fortune Magazine: Shattering glass & breaking concrete – Panelist;

• Invest in Canada: Women, International Trade and Technology – Panelist;

• Sponsor of BMO Workplace of the Future Exhibition Space;

• Sponsor & Host of Women in Tech Lounge;

• Designed and built the Workplace of the Future installation – complete with robots, energy pods and even holographics!

… and the year is only half over!

Based on the foregoing, you will agree that Claudette McGowan is THE prime candidate for the 2019 Science & Technology Award.