Board of Directors

John Vince | Calgary Chapter President,Director, Enterprise Architecture & Enablement, Shaw Communications
John-Vince-rdJohn Vince  is the Director, Enterprise Architecture & Enablement for Shaw Communications, and President of the Calgary Chapter. A results-oriented leader, John has enjoyed a dynamic career that has spanned Telecommunications, Technology and Upstream Oil & Gas. With most of John’s career having been spent in leadership capacities, he possesses a passion for building cohesive teams along with the strategic capability and business acumen to transform and operate IT with focus on business outcomes and partnered transparency to enable the achievement of corporate objectives. John has recently completed his Executive MBA through Queen’s University at the Smith School of Business.
Having joined the board in 2014, John is very passionate about investing in the progression of the IT industry as a whole. His goals as President include continuing to enhance the sense of community our members experience while increasing the breadth of our membership and providing business and strategy focused content/discussions for our CIOs delivering IT in today’s digital world.

Michael Barr | CIO, Mount Royal University
Michael is a CIO distinguished by strategic application of emerging technologies, consulting and startup venture experience, strong financial background, and operational leadership.  He builds clear business cases for new solutions, sets IT governance standards, and develops stakeholder consensus.  In his current position, he has taken on increasing responsibility and accountability in executive management, strategic planning, governance, solutions implementation and business development. The Mount Royal IT team, led by Michael, contributes to the success of over 12,000 credit students, 4,000 continuing education students and 1,300 professors, instructors and staff.

Miguel Kanafany | Senior Director, Infrastructure & Integration Canada, Sysco Canada
Miguel-Kanafany-rdMiguel Kanafany is the Senior IT Advisor at Sysco Canada, and Past-President of the Calgary Chapter. Joining the Board in 2013, Miguel brings 18+ years of experience in IT management. He is known for his effective strategic thinking, his strong organizational skills and his experience as a negotiator. Miguel joined the CIO Association because of value of the network of thought leadership, and the Association’s position as a vendor-neutral senior executive IT peer group that cuts across industry silos.  In addition to his work with the CIO Association, Miguel also serves on the Board of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra.


Lyonel Kawa | Chief Information Officer, BURNCO Rock Products 
Described as an authentic and energized leader, Lyonel Kawa has established a track record of success by building easy-to-understand strategies and high-performing IT teams, which create trust and credibility with business leaders.
Known for his history of successful IT transformations with Burlington, Enerplus, Lafarge and now BURNCO; Lyonel’s strategy is built on three principles: Professionalize, Modernize and then Digitize. These hold true in any IT/business context, especially when supporting business growth, leading the organization after an acquisition, or embarking on innovation..


Stephen Lefebvre Executive Partner, Gartner Inc
Stephen Lefebvre is an Executive Partner at Gartner Inc., based in Calgary. He works closely with Gartner Executive Programs clients, providing executive-level advice, guidance, counsel, direction and assistance to support the CIO role and helping members to use Gartner resources to succeed in their organizations.
With more than 20 years of experience in the Oil and Gas sector, Stephen held a series of positions at Star Oil & Gas and Devon Energy, finishing that work in the position of Sr. Director of IT Strategy & Planning, and CDN IT Operations. Stephen holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Calgary.

Ron Murch | Senior Instructor Emeritus, Management Information Systems, University of Calgary
Ron-Murch-rdRon Murch is a Senior Instructor Emeritus with the Haskayne School of Business at the University of Calgary and continues to work with his colleagues to bring his interests and experience in experiential learning, peer mentoring, Information Technologies and Managing Innovation to various courses and programs in the Haskayne School (B.Comm., MBA, Executive MBA). Following his official retirement, Ron has continued to teach in the Alberta/Haskayne Executive MBA Program.
Ron is the recipient of several awards for teaching excellence from both students and faculty colleagues. He is an active member of a number of professional and community organizations and has been the academic liaison for the Haskayne School of Business since September 2011.

Sam Okasha | Director, Corporate Services, Sanjel Energy Services
Sam Okasha is a business executive with a strong passion for people and technology. His 20+ years of IT experience that extends globally across energy services, property management, pharmaceutical, and manufacturing industries. As a business partner, he transforms business challenges and opportunities by leveraging technology solutions. Driven by people, Sam strongly believes that the combined strength of each individual will continue to humanize the digitalization of our world.
In his current role as Director of Corporate Service at Sanjel Energy Service, Sam is responsible for the Corporate Services portfolio covering: Human Resources, Information Technology, and General Administration.
Sam earned his bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Engineering and his master’s degree in Software Engineering from the University of Texas, Arlington (UTA). Sam also holds an Executive Management Certificate from the Sloan School of Management at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Thomas Schmidt | CIO, Pacific Western Transportation Ltd 
Thomas Schmidt-cpdThomas Schmidt is the Vice President, Information Technology for Pacific Western Transportation (PWT), one of the largest privately held people transportation companies in North America. The team of 20 IT professionals Thomas has built have partnered and supported the PWT as it has doubled in growth over the last decade.
Thomas is a 22 year professional with experience in Chemical Oil & Gas, Oil & Gas Services but predominantly with Transportation. Throughout this time, Thomas has led his teams on Business Transformation & Innovation, IT Strategy & Governance, Project Management, ERP, Application Sustainment, Budgeting / Planning / Forecasting and Team Collaboration.
His attitude towards optimal performance, consistent service and the big picture have driven him on his continuous path of excellence. Thomas’ philosophy is to achieve a win / win outcome with the relationships he builds and the business interactions he is involved in.