CIO Peer Forum Moderators

The Directors College is pleased to be participating in the CIO Canada Association’s Annual Peer Forum in April of 2021.  The topic of Innovation is a key focus for board agenda’s as businesses become more reliant on their digital systems to succeed in a fast-moving economy.  Board directors require strong partnerships with technology leaders in their organizations who understand the roles and responsibilities of oversight, can clearly define the risks and opportunities of digital innovation, and can encourage proactive support for an innovation agenda.

On April 7, Dr. Michael Hartmann will be addressing the conference on this topic and we are honoured to bring in some amazing resources from our faculty and alumni to facilitate deeper discussions with attendees on the most pressing topics facing the boardroom today.

Speaker and Table Moderator: Governance and Innovation


Dr. Michael Hartmann
Principal of The Directors College, Executive Director EMBA in Digital Transformation
DeGroote School of Business, McMaster University

Michael Hartmann is a jointly appointed Professor of Medicine and Management at McMaster University, Co-Director of the University’s Health Leadership Academy and Principal of The Directors College – Canada’s founding professional development program for board directors (2003-2019). He also serves as founding Executive Director of an EMBA program in Digital Transformation teaching courses on Corporate Innovation and Digital Entrepreneurship.

Dr. Hartmann has held senior leadership roles with universities in the UK and Canada. He previously served as Deputy Dean and CXO, Manchester Business School (2007-2012), and Assistant Dean, Rotman School of Management (1998-2007) where he established a globally ranked executive education business (Top 20 Business Week and Top 50 Financial Times).

Dr. Hartmann has over 25 years experience as an educational consultant, facilitator and trainer to organizations around the world. A sample of his consulting assignments include work for Novartis (Switzerland), Ziraat Bank (Turkey), Thales Group (France), JCB (USA), Omantel (Oman), Al-Futtaim Group (Dubai), Manchester Airport Groups, British Sky Broadcasting, NBCUniversal (UK), Dentsu Aegis Network (Singapore, New York, London), BDO, SOCAN and OMERS (Canada). His current research interests focus on the topics of disruptive innovation and governance. He leads an annual course on innovation for board directors and is a member of Stanford’s Digital Cities Consortium and the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) Technology, Governance and Innovation Panel.

Dr. Hartmann holds graduate degrees from the University of Toronto and York University and a doctoral degree from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland. He also holds professional accreditation with The Directors College (C.Dir.) and le Collège des administrateurs de sociétés (ASC). His work on corporate governance and executive and directors education has been published in academic journals as well as the professional press. He also hosts a regular governance and innovation webinar and podcast series called The Collaboratorium.

Table Moderator: Reputation and Crisis Management


John Crean
Senior Managing Director
Teneo Holdings

John Crean is Senior Managing Director at Teneo Strategy. John’s expertise is in all aspects of communications and public affairs strategy, including issues and crisis management, media strategy, messaging and training, coalition building and advocacy. Prior to joining Teneo, John was the National Managing Partner of Canada’s largest public relations firm and one of the top ten independent firms globally.

John has extensive crisis and issues management experience in a variety of sectors, including government, financial services, telecom, professional services, food services, health care and retail. He works closely with senior executives and boards of directors, managing internal and external communications strategies associated with sensitive issues. He has provided counsel in areas including class action lawsuits, hostile bids, proxy battles, corporate restructuring, insider trading, human resources issues, data security and product tampering and recalls.
John is the Past-Chair of the Board of Directors for Hospice Palliative Care Ontario (HPCO). He is also on the Board of Directors of the New Haven Learning Centre, a unique school for children living with autism and the Board of Trustees of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, one of Canada’s most renowned art galleries. John Chairs the Humber College Advanced PR Program Advisory Committee.

John speaks regularly to media and at industry events on issues in public relations and reputation. He is a faculty member at The Directors College, an accredited corporate director development program that leads to a university designation Chartered Director (C.Dir.), teaching issues and crisis management.  John graduated from York University with an Honours BA in Mass Communications and Political Science. He has also completed the Leading Professional Service Firm Program at Harvard Business School.

Table Moderator: Communicating Cyber Risk to Directors


Lloyd Komori
Professional Board Director, Former CRO and Cyber Risk Authority

Lloyd is highly regarded for his leadership and leading edge views on risk management and board director oversight of risk. His leadership is derived in large part from his deep expertise and diverse experience gathered over a thirty-five year career during which he designed and implemented enterprise wide risk management and corporate governance frameworks, processes and systems for numerous global organizations. He has hands-on C-suite experience leading teams responsible for measuring and managing all forms of financial, operational, environment and technology related risks in a number of industry sectors.

He has published a number of papers and articles on risk management and risk culture, is a frequent public speaker on risk, governance and more recently cyber exposure, in addition to serving on a number of global advisory boards and committees.

His practical management experience, technical expertise and thought leadership has led to him serving on a number of public and private sectors boards including the ETFO Employee Life Health Trust, the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System Administration Corporation, the Dean’s Advisory Council of the Ted Rogers School of Business, the Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network, the Strategic Risk Council and the Abilities Centre of Durham Region.

In 2019, Lloyd completed a certificate program on Artificial intelligence at MIT’s Sloan School of Business following the completion of a Professional Master’s Diploma in Enterprise Information Security, Data Protection and Privacy in 2017 at Ryerson University. His graduate thesis focused on the use of artificial intelligence in cyber risk management applications. He has been awarded all three of the board director certifications awarded by the Degroote School of Business of McMaster University and graduated from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Arts in double majors in Political Science and Economics.

Table Moderator: Legal World of A.I.


Carole Piovesan

Carole is managing partner at INQ Law, focusing her practice on privacy, cyber readiness, data governance and artificial intelligence (AI) risk management. She regularly counsels clients on a wide range of matters related to privacy, cyber readiness and breach response, data governance, ethical AI and responsible innovation. Prior to founding INQ Law, Carole was co-lead of the national Cybersecurity, Privacy and Data Management group at McCarthy Tétrault. She has represented clients before all levels of court in Ontario as well as at the Supreme Court of Canada.

Carole plays an active role in shaping data law, policy and standards in Canada and globally. She is the co-chair of the federal government’s Exposure Notification application. She also co-chairs the data governance working group for the Data Governance Standardization Collaborative at the Standards Council of Canada. She is a member of the Data Governance Working Group for the Global Partnership on AI, as well as an advisor to several AI start-ups.

In 2018, Carole was appointed by the federal Minister of Innovation to serve as one of six Digital Leaders in the national data and digital transformation consultations. In this role, she led consultations with businesses, academics, civil society and industry associations to inform the first national Digital Charter. Announced on May 21, 2019, the Digital Charter has led to significant proposed reforms to Canada’s federal private sector privacy law.

Carole regularly teaches, speaks and writes on topics related to data law and AI. She is also co-editing a book on AI and law that will be published by Thomson Reuters in 2021.

Table Moderator: CIO at the Board Table


Anju Virmani

Anju was born and raised in India spent the her early childhood and youth as an award winning scholar at prestigious institutions . Anju has made Toronto her home for more than three decades and did most of her growing up in North America . A traditional Indian upbringing led Anju into a career in technology at a time when women in technology were a rarity.

Anju is an executive with a passion for innovation and proven track record of successful digital transformations in North America in diverse industries including transportation, healthcare, finance and insurance. Anju has extensive experience helping organizations achieve a competitive edge using technology, people and process.  Anju serves as advisors to technology start ups and helped provide mentorship and strategy to emerging technologies and emerging entrepreneurs.

She is Chief Information officer at Cargojet Airways, Canada s only cargo airline for time sensitive air cargo services. Anju provides technology leadership to the organization and helps to effectively manage technology and business risks.  Prior to Cargojet, Anju founded and successfully ran a management and technology consulting practice in Silicon Valley.

Anju has a keen interest in corporate governance and has served on many non profit and crown corporations boards and advisory roles. Anju served on the ACNS Advisory Council for National Security, The Toronto Transit Commission and the advisory board of the York University MBA Health care program.

A self proclaimed geek, Anju is also a self taught accomplished visual artist and her art pieces have found homes at Ryerson University, corporate and medical offices as well as many homes.  Anju believes in serving the community and supports initiatives in education and health care through her family foundation.

Anju holds a and B.Ed from the University of Delhi, INDIA and an M.BA from the City University of New York. Anju has also received the Charter Director designation from McMaster University.

Table Moderator: Environmental Social Governance (ESG)


Bob Willard
Author and Speaker
Sustainability Advantage

Bob is a leading expert on quantifying and selling the business value of corporate sustainability strategies and has given over 1,300 presentations to corporate, government, university, and NGO audiences. Bob applies his business and leadership experience from his 34-year career at IBM Canada to engage the business community in proactively avoiding risks and capturing opportunities by using smart environmental, social, and governance (ESG) practices.

He has authored six books: The Sustainability Advantage (2002), The Next Sustainability Wave (2005), The Sustainability Champion’s Guidebook (2009), The New Sustainability Advantage (2012), Release 1 of the Future-Fit Business Benchmark (co-authored, 2016), and the Sustainability ROI Workbook (2017). He has published two white papers: “7 Bold Strokes to Save our World” (2020) and “The 21st Century Sustainable Enterprise Force Field” (2021). His extensive Master Slide Decks and free, open-source toolkits, templates and videos provide comprehensive capacity-building resources for sustainability champions.

Bob serves on the Future-Fit Foundation board, the Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Council (SPLC) board, and the B Corp Standards Advisory Council. He was one of five inaugural inductees into the International Society of Sustainability Professionals (ISSP) Hall of Fame in 2011, received Clean50 awards in 2015 and 2017, and has earned six “Best for the World – Overall” and five “Best for the World – Community” awards since becoming a Certified B Corp in 2012. He is an ISSP Sustainability Excellence Professional, a Future-Fit Certified Professional and Accredited Partner, and received a PhD in sustainability from the University of Toronto in 2005.

Residents of Ontario, Bob and his wife are the proud parents of three adult children and the proud grandparents of three grandsons. His purpose is to ensure future generations have the opportunity for at least the quality of life that he has enjoyed.