Members of the Canadian Chapter of the A4S CFO Leadership Network

Learn more about the Canadian members of the A4S CFO Leadership Network.

The Network brings together a group of leading Canadian CFOs from large businesses seeking to embed the management of environmental and social issues into business processes and strategy. Find out more about the members of this group.

Benita M. Warmbold, co-chair

Benita Warmbold

Benita joined Canada Pension Plan (CPP) Investment Board in 2008 as senior vice-president and chief operations officer, and in 2013 became senior managing director and chief financial officer. As CFO, she is responsible for the finance and legal functions, including corporate and investment finance, treasury, performance, enterprise reporting, investment risk, tax, internal audit, governance, legal risk, corporate secretarial, and compliance. The CPP Investment Board invests the funds not needed by the Canada Pension Plan to pay current benefits. The CPP Fund was $298.1 billion on December 31, 2016.

Benita is currently active on several boards, including Methanex Corporation, Canadian Public Accountability Board, Queen's University Board of Trustees and Women's College Hospital. She is also chair of the Smith School of Business Advisory Board (Queen's University).

Benita holds an Honours Bachelor of Commerce degree from Queen's University. A Fellow of Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario and ICD.D, she has been recognized three times as one of Canada's Most Powerful Women Top 100, and in 2016 was inducted into the WXN Hall of Fame.

Brian Lawson, co-chair

Brian Lawson

Brian joined Brookfield Asset Management in 1989 and became chief financial officer in 2002. Prior to becoming CFO, Brian held roles in the firm’s finance, investment and restructuring operations. He began his business career with Deloitte, which he joined in 1983.

Brian serves as a governor of the University of Toronto. He and his wife, Joannah, are actively involved with several organizations that are focused on improving nutrition, including the Centre for Child Nutrition at UofT and Community Food Centres Canada.

Lawrence E. Davis

Lawrence Davis

Lawrence is the senior vice-president of Finance at bcIMC, one of Canada's largest institutional investors within the capital markets.

Lawrence has served as a board member and audit committee chair for several Canadian reporting issuers. He is a Fellow Chartered Professional Accountant (FCPA), Chartered Insolvency and Restructuring Professional and is a graduate of the Directors Education Program of the Institute of Corporate Directors holding the ICD.D designation.

Lawrence is active in several professional and not‐for-profit activities including being an advisory member of CPA Canada’s Financial Reporting and Accounting Conference, a member of CPA Ontario’s Professional Conduct Committee, a guest lecturer at the Rotman School of Management and a board member of Crohn’s and Colitis Canada, whose mission is to cure Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis and improve the lives of children and adults affected by these chronic diseases.

Patrice Impey

Patrice Impey

Patrice is the chief financial officer and general manager of Finance, Risk and Supply Chain Management for the City of Vancouver. She oversees all aspects of finance, accounting, treasury, risk and supply chain management for the city.

Patrice holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master’s in Business Administration degree, and has over 20 years’ experience in senior financial and operational management positions in the private and public sectors.

Robert Siddall

Rob Siddall

Robert Siddall is Chief Financial Officer at Metrolinx. Robert has over 35 years of senior management experience, covering a wide range of strategic and financial functions in both the private and public sectors.

Prior to Metrolinx, Robert was Chief Financial Officer for Waterfront Toronto and previously held the position of Provincial Controller with the Province of Ontario. While at the Province, Robert was responsible for introducing the first risk management policy and for developing risk management training as part of the Modern Controllership initiative.

Robert holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Toronto and is a FCPA, FCA. Robert is a board member of CPA Canada’s Sustainability Advisory Board and member of the Public Sector Accounting Board Discussion Group.

Jonathan Simmons

Jonathan Simmons

Jonathan Simmons is a Fellow of The Institute of Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario. He was appointed Chief Financial Officer at OMERS in January 2014. Founded in 1962, OMERS is one of Canada’s largest defined benefit pension plans, with more than $85 billion in net assets and more than 470,000 members as at December 31, 2016. Prior to joining OMERS, Jonathan was a Partner at PwC for more than a decade, where he led PwC Canada’s insurance practice. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Warwick in the United Kingdom.

Jonathan also serves as a director at a number of organizations, including United Corporations, a TSX-listed investment company and Futurpreneur Canada, a national non-profit that provides coaching, business resources, start-up financing and mentoring for youth aged 18-34 to help start a business.

Pamela Steer

Pamela Steer

Pamela Steer, FCPA, FCA, CFA is chief financial officer of Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB), one of the largest insurance organizations in North America. She is also vice chair of the CFA Society Toronto, treasurer of the Ontario Association of Naturopathic Doctors and is on the Advisory Board of the University of Waterloo’s School of Accounting and Finance.

Pamela holds a Master of Accounting degree from the University of Waterloo, is accredited as a Chartered Professional Accountant and holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. Pamela lives in Toronto with her husband and young son.

P. Bruce West

P. Bruce West

Bruce joined The Co-operators Group in June 2007 as executive vice-president, Finance and chief financial officer (CFO).

Bruce’s educational accomplishments include a Bachelor of Mathematics from the University of Waterloo (1980), Chartered Professional Accountant designation (1981), FLMI designation (1985) and an MBA with a concentration in marketing from Wilfrid Laurier University (2005). In 2009, he obtained the Chartered Director (C.Dir.) designation from The Directors College, a joint venture of McMaster University and the Conference Board of Canada. He is a member of the Financial Executives Institute of Canada.

Bruce is on the board of directors for a number of companies within The Co-operators Group. He is also on the Dean’s Advisory Council at the School of Business and Economics at Wilfrid Laurier University, and is an Honouree of the School of Accounting and Finance at the University of Waterloo.

Maarika Paul, FCPA, FCA, CBV, ICD.D

Maarika Paul

Maarika is executive vice-president and chief financial officer at La caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec. She is responsible for monitoring financial performance, completing treasury operations, applying best practices in financial governance and managing business services. She also oversees human resources and talent management activities. She is a member of the executive committee, in addition to being a member of the board of Ivanhoé Cambridge, the institution’s global real estate subsidiary.

Maarika is a Fellow Chartered Professional Accountant (FCPA, FCA) and a Chartered Business Valuator (CBV) with more than 30 years of experience in financial management. She initially spent 10 years with KPMG. In 1994, she joined BCE, where she worked until 2011. Her responsibilities included, in particular, performance evaluation of BCE subsidiaries, financial planning, mergers and acquisitions and investor relations. She was also senior vice-president, Corporate Communications, and subsequently senior vice-president, Corporate Services. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration (Accounting) from McGill University.

Her contributions to the community are numerous. She is currently a member of the board of directors of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and a member of McGill University’s audit committee. In 2008, and again in 2015, she was named to Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 list by the Women’s Executive Network. In 2013, she received the Leadership Award from the Association of Québec Women in Finance.

Phil Witherington

Phil Witherington

Phil became chief financial officer at Manulife in January 2018. In this role, he is responsible for the global financial affairs of the company including capital management, treasury, controllership, taxation, investor relations and reinsurance activities. He is a member of the company’s executive leadership team and is based in the company’s headquarters in Toronto.

Prior to this appointment, Phil was the interim chief executive officer, Manulife Asia, responsible for operations in China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Macau, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia. Before that, he was chief financial officer, Manulife Asia, leading transformational change within the finance function in Asia and providing strong financial leadership to business decisions by influencing divisional strategy and business unit profitability, as well as leading financial due diligence of all merger and acquisition opportunities.

Phil joined Manulife in 2014 and has 20 years of experience in insurance and financial services, in both developed and emerging markets within Asia. Prior to joining Manulife, Phil led finance in Asia Pacific for the retail banking and wealth management business of a major international bank, having earlier served as the deputy regional chief financial officer for its Asian insurance businesses. Previously, Phil was vice-president, Finance, at a major international insurer, based in Hong Kong. He also spent a decade with one of the big four professional services networks, based in London and Hong Kong, specializing in financial services audit and advisory services, with a particular focus on life insurance clients.

Phil holds a Bachelor of Science in Geography with first class honors from the University of Durham (United Kingdom) and an Executive MBA jointly awarded by the University of Edinburgh Management School (United Kingdom) and the École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (Paris, France). He is also a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales (FCA) and the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants (FCPA).

Karl W. Smith

Karl Smith

Karl is executive vice-president and chief financial officer of Fortis Inc. His career with the Fortis Group spans nearly 30 years. He served as president and chief executive officer of FortisAlberta from 2007 to 2014. Karl served as president and chief executive officer of Newfoundland Power from 2004 through 2007, and as chief financial officer of Fortis from 1999 to 2003.

He earned a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) from Memorial University of Newfoundland and is a member of Chartered Professional Accountants of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Karl serves on the boards of UNS Energy and FortisBC, both Fortis utilities. He has served on the boards of CH Energy, FortisOntario, FortisAlberta and Caribbean Utilities Company, all Fortis utilities. Karl is chair of the Memorial University of Newfoundland Faculty of Business Administration's advisory board, and serves on the boards of the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council and Junior Achievement of Newfoundland and Labrador. He is past chair of the Canadian Electricity Association, the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council, the board of governors of Mount Royal University and the Board of Junior Achievement of Southern Alberta. He is also past treasurer of the Western Energy Institute.

David McGraw

David McGraw

David and the finance team at Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan are responsible for valuing and reporting on pension fund assets, providing tax oversight and operational due diligence. Finance responsibilities also include financial and management reporting, risk analytics and model valuation, enterprise/operational risk management support and the CEO/CFO internal controls certification program.

David has more than 25 years of senior management experience in financial management, corporate finance, banking and mergers and acquisitions.

Before joining Ontario Teachers' in 2004, David was chief financial officer of Bell ExpressVU. Prior to that, he was vice-president, Mergers & Acquisitions/Corporate Finance, at BCE/Bell Canada and partner-in-charge of the Corporate Finance Group of a major international accounting firm. He currently sits on the board of Bristol Airport and BluEarth Renewables Inc.

David is a Fellow of Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario. He earned a Bachelor of Commerce from McGill University and an MBA from the University of Western Ontario. He is also a member of the Institute of Corporate Directors.