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Return To Bay Street (RTBS) 2022 Info Session

Wednesday, March 2nd 2022
12:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Virtual Program, ON

In order to best prepare candidates for the Return to Bay Street (RTBS) application experience, WCM is offering an info session. All women considering applying are encouraged to participate. The conference will offer:

  • A full overview of the Return to Bay Street Award Program;
  • Information on what candidates are to expect as they go through the application process;
  • The opportunity to learn more about the experiences of previous RTBS candidates;
  • A panel discussion on industry trends and their impact on capital markets careers.

Please help us spread the word by forwarding this event information to women you know who might be interested in returning to the capital markets!

Share with your network. Transform someone's career.To learn more about the Return to Bay Street Program and submit an application click here.


12:00 - 12:05 PM ET | Welcome From Co-Chairs

Greg DeBienne

Co-Chair, Return to Bay Street

Greg is responsible for voice and electronic trading of G10 spot and forwards with additional responsibilities in FX Data Analytics and Innovation. He is also the Co-Head of Emerging Markets FX Trading, responsible for European and Asian markets.

Starting as an associate in TD’s Treasury office in Winnipeg, Greg has been with TD for over 25 years. He joined the Commercial Paper trading desk after relocating to Toronto, and later the Foreign Exchange team. In 2010, he became the Global Head of FX forward and short-term derivatives trading.

Outside of FX, Greg has supported leadership opportunities for marginalized groups as a member of our Inclusion and Diversity Leadership Council. He also works with our Women in Leadership groups to facilitate mentorship opportunities both inside and outside the firm. Greg is one of TD’s Well-being Ambassadors and supports colleagues to act on mental health issues.

Greg is a Chartered Financial Analyst charter holder. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Regina.

Mary Ann Mendes

Co-Chair, Return to Bay Street

Mary Ann Mendes is Managing Director, Global Markets Strategy & Business Management, BMO Capital Markets, responsible for key initiatives promoting a winning culture, including Talent Strategy and Equity, Diversity & Inclusion.

In her positions, Mary Ann has led transformational initiatives that center primarily around client data and analytics, across lines of business globally. After a successful eighteen-year career at CIBC World Markets, Mary Ann temporarily opted out of the industry for five years to raise her three young sons. Mary Ann relaunched her career in 2013 after completing the Rotman Back To Work Program and receiving the Women in Capital Markets (WCM) Return To Bay Street Award. 
Mary Ann is inspired to pay it forward and actively coaches women to navigate success in their careers through insights shared from her own personal experience. She was appointed Co-Chair for WCM’s RTBS program in 2020 and continues to be an advocate to further Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in finance. 

In January 2021, Mary Ann received the esteemed WCM Executive Leaders Award designed for women who have excelled in their professional roles, demonstrating exemplary leadership skills, career commitment and ambition.

12:05 - 12:10 PM ET | Introduction To RTBS

Lara Zink

President & CEO, Women in Capital Markets

Lara Zink is currently President & CEO of Women in Capital Markets. WCM is the largest network of female professionals in Canadian finance, with initiatives that impact the careers of countless female students and professionals across the country. 
Prior to joining WCM, Lara spent 18 months in venture capital. She is an angel investor and a mentor at a startup accelerator called NEXT Canada. NEXT accelerates the growth trajectory of aspiring and scaling entrepreneurs with education, mentorship, funding, and access to Canada’s strongest entrepreneurial network.  From 1995 to 2019 Lara worked at RBC Capital Markets. She sold North American and European equity research and investment banking products to many of Canada’s largest institutional investors, including pension funds, bank owned mutual funds, and independent fund managers. A lead partner in RBC Women’s Leadership ETF, she has been a strong advocate for ED&I throughout her career and has extensive volunteer experience for social impact. 

Lara holds a Bachelors of Arts degree from UWO, and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management. Lara is a Governor on the University of Toronto Governing Council, she sits on two Foundation boards, the CAMH Campaign Cabinet, and is a volunteer for the Special Olympics. 

Lara has been an active mentor to junior women and men throughout her career. 

12:10 - 1:10 PM ET | Past RTBS Recipients Panel

Aigul Narzhanova

Vice President, UHNW Distribution, TD Securities

Aigul is a 2020 Return to Bay Street Award recipient. She joined TD Securities as part of NA Institutional FX Sales Team and transitioned to the UHNW team in February 2021. Aigul started her career in capital markets in 2005, working for HSBC and Citi bank in the EMEA region. Her focus was delivering hedging solutions on FX, interest rate and energy commodity exposures to corporate and institutional clients. From 2017-2019 Aigul worked in the Big 4 in the Middle East, becoming a hedge accounting expert under IFRS 9 and IAS 39.

Aigul is a member of TDS Women in Leadership Committee.

Ariane Stren

Director, Regulatory and Business Initiatives Group, Global Banking and Markets, Scotiabank

Ariane is a bilingual lawyer, who started her career as a practicing lawyer in a large Toronto law firm.  After a few years, and driven by an interest in public policy and regulatory issues, Ariane transitioned to an in-house legal position in a Canadian broadcasting company, managing regulatory issues, litigation and compliance matters.  After several years in practice, she left the workforce to stay home with her two young boys. When her children were a little older, Ariane seized an opportunity to return to work by applying to the Return to Bay Street Program. 

Now a Director in the Regulatory and Business Initiatives Group at Scotiabank, she supports the Global Banking and Markets business in the regulatory and business change process.  Ariane currently represents Scotiabank in several industry forums, including as current Chair of the Canadian Market Infrastructure Committee, a group made of Canadian banks and buy-side OTC derivatives firms that seeks to advise Canadian regulators (both provincial and federal) on a range of issues relating primarily to the regulation of OTC derivatives.  As one of the leads for the Benchmark Rate Reform Program, she manages a team and several workstreams, and participates in the development of written and in-person submissions to regulators, globally.  As part of BRR, Ariane works to clarify regulatory issues impacting the program, working with senior management and stakeholder groups to develop and execute plans for transition that reflect regulatory expectations and are effectively communicated to regulators.  

While she no longer formally practices law, Ariane continue to rely heavily on the many problem solving and communication skills she acquired from her career as a lawyer, which have proven to be both invaluable and transferable.

Hao Tian

Associate, Global Investment Banking, CIBC

Hao Tian is an Associate of Sustainability Advisory in CIBC Capital Markets' Global Investment Banking group. 

Prior to joining CIBC Capital Markets, Ms.Tian held roles in risk management, loan syndication and consulting at other financial institutions and international organization. 

Ms. Tian holds a Master of Finance degree from the University of Toronto and a Bachelor of Economics degree from the Central University of Finance and Economics.

Katrin Tosine

Vice President, Communications, BMO Capital Markets

With a strong background in corporate communications and strategy, Katrin joined the team at The Office of the CEO at BMO Capital Markets as VP Communications. Prior to joining BMO, through her own communications and investor relations company, Katrin worked closely with management teams of financial services and technology companies as an external communications partner. Her focus was to capture the essence of corporate business cultures and objectives, and relay concisely well thought out messages to targeted audiences. 

Before launching her company, Katrin was in institutional equity sales at independent brokerage firms and worked at a crisis management and communications firm. Her volunteer experience includes: leading the communications and marketing efforts for the Ottawa chapter of the Royal Canadian Institute of Science, providing marketing and communication guidance to the Board of Overbrook, The Musical, an Ottawa not-for-profit theater group, and dedicating weekends to Snowhawks, a children’s ski and snowboard club.

Natasha Stromberg

Director, Sustainable Advocacy & Stewardship, Mackenzie Investments

Natasha leads Sustainable Stewardship and Advocacy for Mackenzie Investments. Natasha has a long and deep background in Capital Markets, International securities regulation, and environmental and social advocacy. Early on in her finance career, Natasha held senior Business Management roles in investment banking in the city of London, UK working across Fixed Income, Equities and Financial Institutions. Natasha then moved on to become a senior regulator at the U.K Financial Services Authority, working on international policy with securities regulators across the globe as part of the IOSCO Commodity Derivatives taskforce. In addition, Natasha was the lead regulatory supervisor of the world’s foremost Metal Exchange, the LME.  

Natasha has extensive knowledge of European and International regulatory affairs from her advocacy and regulatory roles in a leading global trade association and in investment banking. Natasha has worked with the British Armed Forces as a Judge of their ‘Women in Defence’ awards, she is a founding supporter of the U.K Ethnicity Pay Gap campaign, a recognized champion for gender equality and 2020 winner of ‘Women Rocking the Web’ for her advocacy for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Her work in the sustainability arena includes expertise in sustainable workplaces and employee wellbeing, sustainable agriculture, and knowledge of international sustainability reporting and disclosure frameworks.  

Samira Amini

Principal, Global Investments Strategy, Ontario Teachers'​ Pension Plan

Samira Amini is a Principal within Global Investment Strategy (GIS) team which is responsible for developing strategic responses to emerging global themes that traverse asset classes/regions along with cultivating crucial investment relationships for the Fund. Prior to joining GIS in 2020, she worked in the Total Fund Management group within Ontario Teachers’ that focuses on portfolio management and asset allocation for the Fund.

Prior to Ontario Teachers’, Samira worked at RBC Global Asset Management and helped to lead their Corporate Development efforts alongside their executive team. Previous to RBC Global Asset Management, Samira spent 10 years at Bank of America Merrill Lynch within their investment banking and equity research departments.

Samira holds an MBA and HBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario.

Zahra Hussain

Associate, Credit and Transaction Management, Global Credit, RBC Capital Markets

Zahra relaunched her career in 2021 through the Return to Bay Street Program. She is currently an Associate in the Credit and Transaction Management team at RBC Capital Markets. In her role, she works with Corporate Banking and other internal stakeholders to manage a portfolio of credit relationships. 

She started her career in Corporate Banking at HSBC in the United Arab Emirates. After having her first child, Zahra took a career break. She applied to the Return to Bay Street program last year, energized about resuming work with a fresh perspective.

 Zahra is a CFA Charterholder and holds a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia.

1:10 - 1:15 PM ET | Break

1:15 - 2:15 PM ET | Industry Trends And Their Impact on Finance Careers Panel

Anna Castro

Managing Director, TD Asset Management, Inc.

Anna Castro is Managing Director and Senior Portfolio Manager at TD Asset Management's Asset Allocation & Derivatives team. She leads the Multi-Asset Portfolio Management team responsible for the global strategic, tactical and absolute return asset allocation strategies for TDAM's managed solutions. She has expertise in global equities, fixed income, derivatives and alternatives. She is also a member of the TD Wealth Investment Policy Committee. Anna has an MBA from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto and has a BSc in Management Engineering from Ateneo de Manila University. She is a CFA charterholder.

Clare Aker

Director & Assistant Market Leader, BMO Financial Group

Clare is an award-winning Director for industry leading BMO Private Wealth. She is a Sales Leader with a track record focused on results not only in business growth, but client experience and employee engagement. She drives growth across Private Banking, Investment Management and Estate and Trust businesses by engaging a team of highly accredited and talented professionals with 11 Billion in AUM/AUA and creating business alliances. She is a proud co-chair of the BMO Private Wealth Diversity Equity & Inclusion Committee and a DEI mentor. She has driven transformational change in the areas of practice management, strategy and operations. Her work has been featured by Corporate Executive Board. Clare has spent 15 years working across Canada in the wealth space.

Prior to joining BMO Financial Group, Clare worked as a strategy consultant helping a financial co-operative enter new markets. She was also an elected Councillor in one of Canada’s fastest growing communities leading a workforce of 4000 employees, working to deliver the community’s newest university - UOIT and earning an award for outstanding community support by BMO FG.

Clare holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Western University, an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business and has completed the Canadian Securities Course. Clare enjoys skiing (on both water and snow) with her family and has served on several boards of local charitable organizations.

Fanny Doucet

Managing Director and Head, Sustainable Finance, Scotiabank Global Banking and Markets

Fanny leads Scotiabank's Sustainable Finance Group. She has more than 10 years of Debt Capital Markets experience in Canada and the U.S., and has covered clients across a variety of sectors and geographies.

Fanny has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from McGill University and is a CFA charterholder.  

Gillian Brown

Senior Managing Director, Capital Markets, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan

Gillian Brown leads the Capital Markets group, which manages Total Fund exposure to the equity, fixed income, credit, inflation-sensitive and absolute return asset classes. The Capital Markets team supports all of Ontario Teachers' investment groups and is responsible for executing on a centralized trade strategy that allows the Fund to focus on the needs of today's more sophisticated trading environment and its increasing regulatory complexity.

Since joining Ontario Teachers' in 1995, Gillian has held progressively senior roles; she was most recently the Managing Director, Credit, Insurance Linked Securities, Equity Products in our Capital Markets team, and prior to that she was the Director of Derivative Strategies and Trading within the Tactical Asset Allocation and Natural Resources department.

Gillian has more than 20 years of industry experience in equity and derivatives investment management. She holds a B.Comm. from McGill University and is a CFA charterholder.

Lesley Marks

Chief Investment Officer, Equities, Mackenzie Investments

Lesley Marks, Senior Vice President, Investment Management is Chief Investment Officer (CIO) of Equities for Mackenzie Investments. She oversees approximately 110 investment professionals who are involved in the day-to-day management of Mackenzie funds across the firm’s 12 equity boutiques. As CIO, Lesley is responsible for more than $65 billion of Mackenzie’s assets under management.

Lesley is a seasoned investment leader with more than 25 years of experience across asset and wealth management, including 22 years at the Bank of Montreal.  During her tenure at BMO, Lesley was a CIO in both Asset Management and Wealth Management and prior to that had an extensive successful track record as a portfolio manager of Canadian equity portfolios.

Lesley is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Queen’s University and an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business. She is currently Chair of the Crescent School Foundation board, sits on the advisory board of the Institute for Sustainable Finance and is a member of the Audit and Risk Committee for Kids Help Phone.

Priya Radha

Managing Director, CIBC Capital Markets

Priya Radha is a Managing Director in the Corporate & Government Solutions Group at CIBC. In this role, she heads up a team that is responsible for comprehensive client coverage in derivatives markets for all Canadian Provinces, Corporates and U.S. and international SSA’s.
Prior to joining CIBC, Priya was responsible for the Fixed Income Interest Rate Options Business globally at Scotiabank. In this role she and her team developed both the Canadian and U.S. retail structured rate notes platform a critical component of the business line today. Her opportunity in trading options came from successively progressive roles where she was a successful Swap trader in the U.S. and Canadian markets and prior to that trading European and Sterling Swaps.

In 2017, Priya was the recipient of Women in Capital Markets Rising Star Award. She was also awarded the WCM Executive Coaching Award in 2016 and 2019 as a high potential candidate who exemplifies exceptional business leadership. She mentors and coaches several junior and intermediate men and women in Capital Markets both within CIBC and outside the firm. 

Priya is a firm advocate for women in business and has been involved with Women in Capital Markets since she started in the industry. She was the Chair of the Professional Development Committee overseeing over 12 program series that are run by volunteers, for over 3 years.  She was most recently appointed as Co-chair of the Steering Committee the Toronto Chapter. She currently sits on the Board of CODE Foundation and has previously been on several Non-Profit Boards previously.

Priya holds both a B.B.A. (Hon.) and an M.B.A (Dean’s List) with a Specialization in Finance and Strategic Management from the Schulich School of Business at York University. She has also completed a Sustainable Finance Certificate from the University of Cambridge (CISL) given her interest in ESG.

2:15 - 2:20 PM ET | Break

2:20 - 3:00 PM ET | Networking

What is your reaction to the fact that the 61st session of the Commission on the Status of Women will be chaired by a man?