Shari Wallace | Vancouver Chapter President, Chief Information Officer, City of Burnaby
Shari Wallace is CIO for the City of Burnaby with responsibility for IT strategy, business transformation projects, asset lifecycle management and day-to-day operations.
Shari has served as Director of Strategic Planning & Program Management for the City of Vancouver. She was responsible for IT and business transformation initiatives from the ideas stage through to benefits realization, as well as strategic planning and IT standards and policies.
Shari worked for the City of Vancouver for 10 years in a variety of roles, including acting CIO, applications development and support, service management and director of the corporate IT group.
Shari has also spent 15 years in the private sector in a number of IT positions across a wide-range of industries including telecommunications, banking and oil and gas.
Gerry Akkerman | Director, Business Technology Planning, Translink
Gerry has been on the Vancouver Chapter Board of Directors since 2015. He has been working in information technology since 1988, most of which has been in the transportation sector. Prior to starting in public transit in 1994, Gerry worked at Port Vancouver and Price Waterhouse.
On the Vancouver CIO Canada Board Gerry manages the partnership with Simon Fraser University (SFU) for the delivery of the CIO Canada Leadership Development Program. Gerry is active within TransLink’s mentoring program and volunteers on the SFU’s Business Technology Management Advisory Board. Gerry’s is a member of the Metro Vancouver Transportation Technology Advisory Board, the Communications Infrastructure Committee of BC Board, and the Intelligent City Advisory Committee at the City of New Westminster.
Currently as the Director, Business Technology Planning at TransLink, Gerry leads IT Planning and Analysis, the Project Management Office, Enterprise Architecture, Business Intelligence and the IT Security practice.
Michael Brydon | Associate Professor, Beedie School of Business, Simon Fraser University
Michael Brydon is an academic, elected official, and entrepreneur with an interest in the intersection of information technology and decision making. His academic research has appeared in managerial‐focused journals such MIT Sloan Management Review as well as more technical outlets such as Data Mining and Knowledge Discovery and Journal of Database Management. His teaching role is centered around business analytics and decision making His latest startup is Benchcube Analytics, which provides visual benchmarking of financial information for local governments. He hold B.Eng. and M.Eng. degrees from the Royal Military College of Canada and a Ph.D. from the University of British Columbia.
Alex Buhler | Chief Technology Officer, Clearly
Alex Buhler is the Past President of the Vancouver Chapter Board of Directors and the Chief Technology Officer at Clearly, the largest online eyewear company in the world. Clearly is part of the essilor group, a company with 64,000 employees making a global impact in vision care. Alex leads multiple teams to define and implement Clearly’s information technology, merchandising, analytics and UX/UI strategies while looking ahead at scaling and enhancing Clearly’s customer experience.
Alex has 20 years of progressive expertise in several service industries in areas of IT strategy, mergers, security, ERP, applications, project management, shared services, architecture and infrastructure. Alex received a Computer Science and Engineering degree from La Salle University of Mexico City. He previously served as the chapter’s Vice President and co-chair of the Program committee, leading organization of the key monthly events. Alex also created the CIO Association LinkedIn group, which helps members connect nationally.
Hilary Cassady | SVP, IT & Digital Strategy, Quadreal Property Group
With four years experience in the real estate sector, Hilary has been pivotal in the development of the QuadReal Property Group, which started up in June of 2016, and now has almost 1000 employees and a $24bn portfolio of assets under management. Prior to QuadReal, Hilary was with Groupe Danone for over 13 years with a number of promotions and positions starting in Asia as the Regional CIO, where she created Danone’s e-commerce strategy was appointed CIO of its Baby Food and Medical Divisions. Bilingual (French/English) and able to speak a smattering of Mandarin,
Hilary has an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business and has completed her CMA.
Catherine Chick | CIO, Mitacs
Catherine Chick is the Chief Information Officer at Mitacs. Mitacs is a Canadian not-for-profit organization that builds partnerships between universities and companies through research and training programs which support industrial and social innovation. As CIO, Catherine oversees the information and communications technology (ICT) strategy and operations. Prior to joining Mitacs, Catherine accumulated over 20 years of experience working in various strategic and technology management roles across a broad range of industries in both the US and Canada. She has been involved in many initiatives around digital transformation, process redesign, data analytics and solution architecture. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology from the University of British Columbia and a Master of Business Administration from McMaster University.
Omid Hamed | Senior Manager, Cybersecurity, BC Hydro
Omid Hamed has gained a wide range of skills and experience over 25 years in IT, including leadership, strategy, security, project management, and service management. In addition to an engineering background, he has masters certificate in ITIL, masters certificate in Project Management from UVic, and an active CISSP. He completed the CIO Leadership Program from SFU-CIOCAN in 2009.
Omid spent approximately 17 years in the retail industry in various IT management roles, followed by 9 years at Powerex, the energy trading subsidiary of BC Hydro, where he was the head of IT Infrastructure, Operations and Cybersecurity.
Omid lives in Vancouver – BC with his wife and two sons.
Mike Klein | CIO, BC Housing Corp
Since 2001 has lead all aspects of Information Management and Technology at BC Housing. His portfolio includes business solutions, cyber-security, Information privacy, technical architecture, infrastructure, project delivery and service management. Prior to joining BC Housing, Mike spent 12 years at Trans Mountain Pipeline, providing leadership in both technology infrastructure and pipeline control systems. Mike also serves on the board of the Wideman Education Foundation, a non-profit society dedicated to working with young people in promoting the theory and practice of project management principles and skills.
Brian Kuhn | CIO, Vancouver School Board
Brian Kuhn is Director of Technology and CIO for the Vancouver School Board, where he is responsible for developing and promoting vision and strategy leading to the adoption of technology to support new ways of learning, teaching and conducting the business of education. As a senior leader, he oversees the department responsible for technology architecture, development, implementation and support services. He actively pursues the integration of diverse information systems, portals, and online teaching and learning spaces.
Prior to his current role, Brian served as manager of information services for the Coquitlam School District where he had the privilege of contributing to new school design and leading initiatives designed to transform learning and work in that region. Brian presents regularly at conferences and in workshops on a variety of topics involved with education, technology and the future.
Dianne Lapierre | Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer – Raymond James Ltd
Dianne Lapierre is the Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer – Canada for Raymond James Ltd., a financial services organization and subsidiary of Raymond James Financial (US). Dianne has overall responsibility in Canada for all aspects of Technology Operations (including Information Security), Vendor Management, Software Development and Support and the Project Management Office. Prior to joining Raymond James Ltd. in May of 2014, Dianne spent 24 years at Manulife Financial in Waterloo and Toronto Ontario where she progressively held a variety of IT Management and Executive positions.
Gary Munro | CIO and Manager, Information Technology Services, City of North Vancouver
Gary Munro has been an active member since 2006, and was Chapter President from 2016-2018. Gary has worked for over 38 years in the information technology sector, most recently with the City of North Vancouver in the lead technology role.
Before starting with the City of North Vancouver, he gained municipal sector experience with a year-long stint at the District of West Vancouver. Prior to that, Gary was the Chief Information Officer (CIO) at the Justice Institute of British Columbia for 10 years (2005 – 2015), following his role as Director of Technology Services at Accenture Business Services..
Gary attended the Banff Centre for Management and graduated from the Executive Business Management program. He participated in the first offering of the Leadership Development Program, which is a partnership between SFU and the CIO Association of Canada. Gary has also served on non-profit Boards including BCNET, representing institutes and universities in B.C. higher education; and as Vocational Service Director for the Rotary Club of Coquitlam Sunrise.
Chris Sepp | Senior Director of IT, Rocky Mountaineer
Chris Sepp serves as Senior Director, IT with Rocky Mountaineer. He is responsible for overall IT strategy, particularly as it relates to identifying opportunity where technology can be an enabler to the business. Along with the conventional areas of IT function, Chris oversees business transformational activities and Rocky Mountaineer’s Information Management program.
Prior to joining Rocky Mountaineer, Chris served as Director, Business Solutions with Impark where he led a variety of teams including the Credit Card Processing Group, the Field Technology Services & Operations Group and the Business Solutions Group (including Research & Development). During his Impark tenure, Chris transformed and/or established new maturing and evolving functions towards scalability and sustainability.
Chris has 19 years of leadership experience building businesses from the ground up, establishing and solidifying profitable Director and CXO level relationships of varying industries.
Jories Timmers | IT Director and CIO, Powerex
Jories Timmers is the IT Director and CIO at Powerex, the Energy Trading arm of BC-Hydro, where he leads a team of 50 personnel in Vancouver, Canada. He has worked as a member of a Global IT Management team as a Chief Information Security Officer for companies spanning 40 to 220 countries.
His specialization in IT Strategy and Security, Project Management, Compliance, Audit and Governance has been gained over 18 years and he has worked internationally in the Netherlands, Italy, France, Spain, Switzerland and Canada. He has degrees from the Delft University of Technology in Computer Engineering, an MBA from McGill and holds the PMP, CISA, CISM and CISSP certifications.