Corporate Member Story: BMO

As one of WBE Canada’s founding corporations, BMO continues to demonstrate its passion and advocacy for Canadian supplier diversity and promotion of diverse suppliers. BMO has had a long-standing established supplier diversity program in which they provide opportunities to and network with certified diverse businesses, hold their large non-diverse suppliers accountable for supplier diversity and embed supplier diversity into the procurement sourcing process. Over the last few years, BMO has embarked on several aggressive growth initiatives that include expanding their internal supplier diversity council to have an enterprise focus from each line of business and several functional areas; setting supplier diversity goals at the line of business level and launching BMO’s diverse business development program, BMO Elevate.

BMO was awarded “Top Corporation in Supplier Diversity” at WBE Canada’s 2022 Excellence Awards, recognizing WBE Canada Corporate Members who are making a distinct and describable difference in the advancement of Supplier Diversity in Canada. The recipients of this award are organizations acting as leaders in a wide range of areas, including but not limited to growth, opportunities, visibility, and participation. As a Corporate Member, BMO has demonstrated its unwavering support for WBE Canada’s mission and vision through various initiatives, including education, mentorship, sponsorship, and active participation in the Board of Directors and its working committees. Notably, Christine Canning, Head of Supplier Relationship Management at BMO, has played a pivotal role in advancing supplier diversity as a member of the WBE Canada Board of Directors since 2020. Currently serving as the Chair of the Business Development Committee, Christine’s contributions have been instrumental in shaping WBE Canada’s strategic direction and ensuring that women-owned businesses have a level playing field to compete and thrive in Canada’s dynamic marketplace.

“I love our Supplier Diversity Program,” said Christine Canning, “it really helps us deliver on our company purpose of boldly growing the good in business and life. The part that excites me the most is that we get to use the dollars we spend as a lever for good … We get to make change with everyday spend decisions. Beyond that though it’s good for business, we get a more resilient supply chain, we get a more cost effective supply chain and we get the benefit of diversity of thinking so as we face the future and we think about where we’re going, we don’t have the same old thinking trying to get us there.”

Christine Canning
Head of Supplier Relationship Management, BMO

Christine Canning was appointed as head of Supplier Relationship Management at BMO in January 2020. In this role she is responsible for defining standards and systems to drive strong supplier performance from “Day 2” onwards; providing tools, connections, and insights to enable strong supplier relationships; and managing several key enterprise supplier programs which build the value of BMO’s 3rd-party relationships over time. Her mandate includes BMO’s supplier diversity program, focused on increasing the strength of the bank’s supply chain by ensuring it reflects the diversity of the communities we serve – work which has doubled the amount that BMO spends with diverse-owned suppliers over the last 2 years. Christine has been a member of WBE Canada’s Board of Directors since 2020 and currently serves as Chair of the Business Development Committee.

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