2018 BMO Celebrating Women (from left): Marla Kott, former CEO of Imprint Plus and 2012 BMO Celebrating Women Honouree; Michael Bonner, Regional President, BC & Yukon, BMO Bank of Montreal; Cathy Press, CEO of Chinook Helicopters and 2017 BMO Celebrating Women Honouree; Shannon Rogers, President and General Counsel, Global Relay, 2018 BMO Celebrating Women Honouree; Dionne Laslo-Baker, Founder, DeeBee’s Organic Foods Inc. and 2018 BMO Celebrating Women Honouree; Jing Wen, Founder, Columbia Academy, and 2018 BMO Celebrating Women Honouree; Madeline Shaw, Founder and Creative Director of G Day for Girls, Board Chair for The United Girls of the World Society, and Co-Founder of Lunapads and 2016 BMO Celebrating Women Honouree; Junie Heng, Senior Relationship Manager, Business Banking, BMO Bank of Montreal; Elizabeth Petticrew, Branch Manager, BMO Nesbitt Burns
Ongoing development, resources and recognition help champion advancement
Not every organization recognizes the power of women and then follows through with a commitment to understand the unique needs of women investors and women business owners. Supporting causes important to women, developing tools and resources to help them succeed, understanding their unique needs and adjusting how a financial institution can assist women to realize their financial goals are all critical.
It’s a fact that women struggle to access the capital they need to maintain and scale their businesses. As a result, BMO has earmarked $3 billion in capital to support women business owners over the next three years and is as proud of this financial commitment as they are of the other initiatives they are rolling out to support Canada’s women entrepreneurs, such as the BMO for Women website, a series of insight-packed podcasts, and sponsorship of women’s peer-to-peer mentorship groups—just to name a few.
As a Strategic Corporate Sponsor for the Women Deliver 2019 Conference, June 2-6 in Vancouver, BMO is proud to support the pillar of economic empowerment of women. This is the first time that this conference, which is held every three years, has been hosted in North America. BMO is the first Financial Institution to ever sponsor the conference, which will enable them to provide a voice to support women around the world. The vision of this conference is to mobilize, energize and bring together a global movement of change agents, innovators, entrepreneurs and thought leaders to advocate change for women which will ultimately strengthen communities everywhere.
During this conference, BMO will be hosting their 7th BMO Celebrating Women Event in British Columbia. In fact, Vancouver was the home for its first ever BMO Celebrating Women event 2012! This unique program, held in 12 markets across Canada, acknowledges the valuable contributions of female leaders in their communities, shining a light on the experiences and accomplishments that make them so influential.
In 2016, BMO launched the Women in Leadership Mutual Fund—the first impact investing mutual fund offered by a Canadian bank focused on gender diversity. Following the launch of the fund, BMO Global Asset Management became part of the 30% Club in 2017, signing the Investor Statement of Intent that outlines how they will use their collective voice to engage and influence investors to improve gender balance on board and executive teams.
This commitment to women includes both BMO’s customers and employees as this institution continues to build a working environment that’s not only inclusive to women, but that empowers them to be their best and succeed in every aspect of their lives. In addition to being named to Bloomberg’s Gender-equality index for the fourth year in a row, BMO was honoured to be recognized as one of the most diverse and inclusive workplaces by the Global Diversity and Inclusion Index from Thomson Reuters.
BMO has a long history of championing the advancement of women and empowering them to reach their potential—and continues to build on this.