MAXimize: Scaling your career in AI

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The MAX Business Leadership program is excited for its second virtual event! Our leaders give an overview of AI, and its applications.

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October 24, 2020 | 11 AM

30 years ago humans were information workers, then machines beat us at processing. So, for the last decade, humans have adapted to become intelligence workers. But with the emergence of AI and cloud computing, its now it’s time to adapt again. MAXimize: Scaling your career in AI, will aim to give an overview of Artificial Intelligence, its applications and how to build a career in this growing field.

Artificial Intelligence is where a computer is programmed or "taught" by feeding it many examples and having it draw patters, rules and observations from those inputs. In a very simplified form: its the ability for a computer to predict what we might do NEXT. AI is already all around us; we use it every day and it has become a matter of routine. For example, your smartphones ability to predict the next word is an example of AI, or Netflix/Spotify ability to predict what other shows/music you may like and Uber's predictability and Google Maps are all powered by AI.

Join us for an afternoon of learning and networking with industry leaders who look forward to sharing their knowledge, experiences, and expertise. This event is targeted towards MAX Business professionals interested in leveling up their understanding of how AI serves as a competitive differentiator. In addition, we plan to address opportunities to consider, including career options and how to best position yourself in an AI enabled world.

MAX Leadership aims to challenge business professionals towards setting leadership goals and learning from executives.


Sami Ahmed is the SVP of Data and Advanced Analytics at OMERS, one of Canada's largest pension fund. He leads the company’s Analytics & AI strategy, innovation, data science & engineering, business intelligence, data governance and learning/enablement programs.

Prior to OMERS, Sami was the Chief Digital, Data & Analytics Officer at BMO Wealth Management where he oversaw data, analytics & AI, digital & digitization, marketing execution and the data management office. Prior to BMO, Sami was a Partner with Accenture where he spent over 15 years and led the Analytics Strategy & Transformation Consulting practice.

Sami holds an Honors Bachelor of Science, Computer Science Software Engineering from the University of Toronto. He is a contributor to the World Economic Forum’s research on The Next Evolution of Innovation in Financial Services, spends time speaking at industry events, and squeezing in cycling and running whenever possible.


Omolade Saliu is an Executive Data Scientist & Delivery Executive with IBM’s AI & Advanced Analytics Consulting Practice in Canada. He leads the team of Data Scientists, Data Engineers and Machine Learning Engineers across Canada to deliver innovative and enterprise scale AI solutions. He has over 20 years of cross-sector consulting and research experience in leading AI/Machine Learning, mathematical optimization, and BI solutions, as well as AI & Data Science talent development.

Omolade holds six US patents and filed two patents pending resulting from his work on the application of AI/Machine Learning to complex industry problems. He is the author of numerous publications in international journals, conferences, and books. Omolade was featured in the April 2015 Edition of the Alberta Oil Magazine discussing the application of AI & machine learning in Energy & Mining.

Omolade obtained his Bachelors degree in Mathematics & Computer Science in 1998 (FUT, Nigeria), Masters in Computer Science with AI & Software Engineering focus in 2003 (KFUPM, Saudi Arabia), and PhD in Computer Science from the University of Calgary in 2007. He was a Canada Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and Alberta Informatics Circle of Research Excellence (iCORE) scholar.

Pavel Abdur-Rahman is a Partner & Head of Data & AI Transformation at IBM Consulting Services. In addition to his role at IBM, he is an Adjunct Faculty at Queen’s Smith School of Business and Chair for Financial Services Playbook at IEEE's Global Initiative on Ethics of Autonomous & Intelligent Systems. Pavel regularly speaks at global conferences, advises venture capital firms and champions digital economic development government initiatives.

Pavel holds a Bachelors in Industrial Engineering (Operations Research) from the University of Toronto and a Masters in Data Science & Advanced Analytics from Queens University. He is an avid traveler, obsessed with culture & cuisines and a wannabe cyclist.

Rafiya Javed is an MD turned data scientist at Mailchimp. She has worked on statistical models, recommendations systems, and most recently - natural language processing approaches to solve customer problems. Prior to Mailchimp, she co-founded a healthcare startup that collaborated with the Children’s Hospital of Atlanta to understand how technology could be used to improve access to healthcare for underinsured families.

She received her Master’s in Computer Science from Georgia Institute of Technology where she received the program’s first SnapTravel fellowship for students pursuing entrepreneurial ventures. She completed her MD at McGill University in 2017, and prior to that received her B.S. in Physics at the University of Florida.

Shahrukh Islam is a Senior Manager in BMO’s Enterprise Data & AI Accelerator Office. Shahrukh operates at the intersection of Strategy, Digital Product Management, and Machine Learning to drive transformative AI initiatives at BMO, with a focus on modernizing BMO’s suite of digital products.

Shahrukh is an active member of Toronto’s AI community – he is a Steering Committee member of the Toronto Machine Learning Summit (TMLS), speaks at industry events, has organized Deloitte’s InsurTech Summit focused on AI and has contributed to thought leadership AI in Insurance and has contributed to the definition of Bangladesh’s National AI Strategy.

Shahrukh holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Chemical Engineering from the University of Alberta.

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