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Sonya Kunkel on “BMO - Diversity and Inclusion Renewal for Sustainable Change”

11:30-11:59am check-in, light lunch; 12:00pm sharp to 1:00pm discussion and Q&A

Event Details

Speaker Series | Initiative for Women in Business

Date: Thursday November 30, 2017 | 12:00 PM - 01:00 PM
Speaker(s): Sonya Kunkel, Chief Inclusion Officer, BMO Financial Group, in conversation with Tiziana Casciaro, Professor of Organizational Behaviour and Jim Fisher Professor of Leadership, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto
Topic: “BMO - Diversity and Inclusion Renewal for Sustainable Change”
Venue: Desautels Hall (2nd floor, South Building) | map
Rotman School of Management, U of Toronto,
105 St George Street
Location: Toronto
Cost: $25.00 plus HST per person; $20.00 plus HST per person for Rotman, University of Toronto alumni and BMO Employees (fees includes the session and light lunch)
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SYNOPSISJoin us for a candid conversation between Prof. Tiziana Casciaro and Sonya Kunkel, BMO’s Chief Inclusion Officer, as they discuss BMO’s 2017 Catalyst award winning initiative, Diversity and Inclusion Renewal for Sustainable Change (DIR). BMO’s DIR is a strategy to identify and remove barriers to advancing diversity and build an inclusive work environment that drives employee, customer and business goals across the organization.  Learn how the initiative is helping to transform BMO’s senior leadership ranks, talent pipeline, and organizational culture through innovative diversity and inclusion strategies and has helped BMO achieve important results: increased women’s representation in senior leadership ranks to 40% and BMO’s Enterprise Board of Directors to from 30% to 36%.   

Sonya Kunkel is Chief Inclusion Officer and Vice President, People Strategies & Insights, BMO Financial Group. She has enterprise-wide responsibility (Canada & U.S.) for key enterprise people strategies, including people strategy planning, leadership planning, diversity and inclusion, careers, and employee insights and engagement.  Sonya joined BMO as Director, Diversity and Inclusion, in 2011, following a decade of research and consulting where she specialized in understanding the experiences of women, visible minorities, and Aboriginal peoples, particularly their experiences in the workplace.  She has led large-scale research projects of diverse communities, and has advised on and led organizational and culture change initiatives dedicated to building more inclusive workplaces across the public, private and non-profit sectors. Formerly Vice-President and Senior Research Director for Environics Research Group, she led Environics Institute’s 2010 Urban Aboriginal Peoples Study (, a research project that captured the stories and experiences of thousands of First Nations peoples, Métis and Inuit living in Canadian cities and generated much national and international attention. Prior to joining Environics she served as Senior Director of Catalyst (2001-2007), where she worked with former President Susan Black to build the Catalyst Canada office. Here, she held responsibility for Catalyst Canada’s Advisory Services and key research streams, including the BMO-sponsored 2004 study, The Bottom-Line: Connecting Corporate Performance and Gender Diversity. This study, for the first time, established a firm link between gender diversity on top leadership teams and better financial performance. Sonya has an undergraduate degree in Peace and Conflict Studies, an M.A. in Political Economy and an MBA in Strategic Management from the Schulich School of Business.

Tiziana Casciaro is a Professor of Organizational Behavior and the Jim Fisher Professor of Leadership at Rotman School of Management of the University of Toronto. Before joining the University of Toronto, she served for eight years on the faculty of the Harvard Business School. Professor Casciaro's research focus is on social networks in organizations, leadership, talent management, and organizational change. Her work has appeared in academic journals in psychology, sociology, and organizational theory, including the Administrative Science Quarterly, as well as in the Harvard Business Review.  Professor Casciaro has served as an advisor to corporations and firms in the United States and Canada. Her research has been featured in the Economist, the Financial Times, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Huffington Post, USA Today, the Times of London, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, and TIME magazine.   A native of Italy, professor Casciaro received her B.A. in Business Administration from Bocconi University in Milan, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Organization Science and Sociology from Carnegie Mellon University.

NMO Financial Group

QUESTIONS: Leeann Tanaah, Program Assistant, Rotman Initiative for Women in Business | Leeann.Tanaah@Rotman.Utoronto.Ca | 416-978-5137

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