Leadership Assets

Visual assets and copy pertaining to our leadership team, all in one place.

Sid Paquette

Head of RBCx

Sid heads all aspects of our strategy and operations. Before joining RBC, he was a managing partner at OMERS Ventures, where he led several multi-stage investments in tech and innovation startups.

Previously, Sid worked in the international tax practice of a Big Four accounting firm and also worked at one of Canada’s leading corporate law firms, where he specialized in providing M&A advice to Canadian and foreign-based multinational corporations, as well as developing and implementing innovative intellectual property strategies.

Sid has a uniquely versatile skillset, and holds a BA from York University, JD from Osgoode Hall Law School, MBA from Wilfrid Laurier University, and an MTax from the University of Waterloo. He’s also an avid ‘60s and ‘70s car aficionado.

Tony Barkett

Head of Banking

Tony leads our full technology and innovation banking practice. He provides strategic oversight of product and market development, and heads our national relationship management and credit advisory teams.

Prior to RBC, Tony was the Managing Director for Silicon Valley Bank, focused on helping technology companies thrive in Canada’s growing innovation economy. Previously, Tony managed SVB’s Eastern Cleantech practice and worked with technology companies under $100M. Prior to this role, Tony managed SVB’s Southeast Asset Based Lending Group.

Over the course of more than twenty years at SVB, he’s provided a variety of financing solutions to technology companies at every stage.

Hector Crespo

Head of CX and Design, CEO of Mydoh

Hector is the ultimate blend of creative thinking and strategic execution. He and his team work closely with our venture founders and partners to help them discover new business opportunities, gain insights on the human experience, and design exceptional products and services.

Prior to joining RBC, Hector worked in consulting at top advertising and digital agencies, where he built and managed creative service and marketing practices for clients including Fortune 500 companies and major league sport franchises. He’s also led digital and mobile strategy and delivery teams at large financial institutions.

While he grew up, received his undergraduate and graduate degrees, and lived throughout the U.S., he now calls Oakville, Ontario his home, along with his wife and son.

David Forsyth

Managing Director, Credit Advisory

David leads the Credit Advisory group within the Banking pillar, responsible for overseeing financing solutions and portfolio management for clients across the tech and innovation ecosystem.

With over 20 years of financing experience, David has held various positions working in venture capital, private debt, the advisory practice of an international accounting firm and M&A for one of Canada’s largest software companies. Prior to joining RBCx, David was a VP in RBC’s Capital Partners group.

David has an Honours BA from Wilfrid Laurier University, an MBA (Finance) from the University of Alberta and is a CMA, CPA.

Nicole Kelly

Head of Marketing and Growth

Nicole leads our platform engagement and marketing teams, which manage performance, brand, marketing, technology and operations, and partnerships for both the RBCx practice and scaling Ventures portfolio companies. Nicole and her team also work closely with early- and late-stage Banking clients to support their scaling efforts with resources and advisory on go-to-market strategies, growth marketing, PR, and communications.

Prior to RBC, Nicole served as the Director of Community at OMERS Ventures, where she led marketing, communications, and stakeholder relations.

Nicole has over twelve years of marketing and communications experience, primarily within finance and media across digital and traditional platforms.

Cathy Macieri

Head of Operations

As Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer, Cathy leads teams to drive the effective operations, prioritization efforts, and risk management across Banking, Capital, Platform and Ventures. As part of her portfolio, she oversees strategy, data analytics, and financial planning for the broader group.

Cathy has held diverse and progressive leadership roles across RBC over the last 30 years. Previously, Cathy was the Vice President of Business Deposits & Treasury Solutions in RBC’s Canadian Business Banking Division, responsible for setting and executing on the strategic vision for business deposits, operating services, term investments, liquidity management and trade and growing and maintaining RBC’s leading market share in business deposits & investments in Canada. Her career also includes +18 years of leadership experience in Canadian personal banking, focusing on investments, estates and mortgages.

Cathy earned a Bachelor of Business Administration, is Lean Six Sigma and Change Management certified. As a passionate advocate for youth, Cathy created and led the Business Banking summer internship program. She also acts as the RBC representative at the Make-a-Wish Foundation for the Trees of Joy event. When not at work, you can find Cathy at the hockey rink with her husband Frank cheering on their two children or walking her dog Rinx (named for her love of the game).

Shane Murphy

CEO of Ownr

Shane is CEO of Ownr, an RBCx company that makes it easy and affordable for entrepreneurs to incorporate, register and confidently handle ongoing legal compliance. Shane was previously Co-Founder of Founded Technologies, a legal-technology startup that served lawyers and small business owners before it was acquired by RBCx in 2020.

Shane joined Ownr as its Chief Operating Officer following the acquisition and played a key role as it grew to serve over 100,000 Canadian entrepreneurs.

Prior to starting a technology company, Shane was a litigation lawyer who appeared at all levels of court in Ontario. He holds law degrees from McGill University, and a master’s degree from the London School of Economics.

Kim Murray

Head of Human Resources

Kim leads RBCx’s human resources activities. She partners with the senior leadership team to develop workforce strategies and provide talent advice to drive business outcomes.

Prior to joining RBCx, Kim held several senior HR roles at RBC, as well as at other financial institutions. Kim gives back to her community through her support of the MS Society of Atlantic Canada.

Anne No

Managing Director, Banking

Anne leads a highly specialized team across Eastern Canada to deliver industry-tailored capital financing, business advice, and solutions that go beyond traditional banking to support the growth of technology and innovation companies.

Anne has held a wide range of positions in commercial banking, with extensive experience in technology, life sciences, and media. Anne has an Industrial Engineering degree from the University of Brest in France and MBA from HEC Montreal in finance and entrepreneurship.

Rebecca Ross

Managing Director, Credit Advisory

Rebecca co-leads the Banking team’s Credit Advisory group overseeing the portfolio, with a specialized focus on our Life Sciences practice and its strategic product initiatives.

Rebecca brings a wealth of credit advisory experience supporting startups and innovators in the highly specialized biotech segment. Prior to joining RBCx, she worked at SVB Canada in their Life Sciences practice, supporting clients in the Canadian biotech ecosystem with bespoke debt solutions. Her deep ties with the life sciences sector also stems from previous roles in investment research and analysis at a private equity firm specializing in pharmaceutical royalty monetization, along with several Canadian biotech companies developing products for diabetes, endocrine disorders and infectious disease.

Rebecca holds a BSc in pharmacology and toxicology and an MBA from the University of Western Ontario. In her spare time, she volunteers for organizations that support women in STEM across all stages of their career journey.

Dave Simons

Head of Technology

Despite being our Head of Technology, Dave is first and foremost a people person. He oversees our team of high-performing tech leads and engineers to help build and refine founders’ visions.

Dave has managed software teams and delivered innovative infrastructures, consumer-facing services, and licensed software for over 25 years in large corporations, small to mid-sized private companies, and venture-backed startups across Silicon Valley, Toronto, New York, Tel Aviv, and Waterloo.

Most recently, Dave was the Senior Vice President of Engineering at Kik. Prior to Kik, he was the Chief Technology Officer at Points.

Dave lives in Toronto with his wife and their three sons. When he’s not busy solving tech challenges, he loves to fish and spend time at the family cottage.

Karen Starns

CEO of Houseful

Karen Starns is the CEO of Houseful, a powerful real estate platform helping more Canadians realize their home ownership goals by bringing together insights-based guidance, industry experts, and financial resource support.

Karen is an award-winning technology and real estate industry executive. Her outstanding track record of building global brands, driving growth, and solving complex business challenges has been shaped by two leadership stints at Amazon, 13 years at Microsoft, and a global role at Pearson.

An active mentor of women and up-and-coming leaders, she is also a board member of the international nonprofit Miracle Foundation. Karen is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, a lecturer at the McCombs School of Business, and a Fast Company Executive board member.

Devon Thompson

Managing Director, Banking

Devon leads a highly specialized team across Western Canada to deliver industry-tailored capital financing, business advice, and solutions that go beyond traditional banking to support the growth of technology and innovation companies.

Devon is an accomplished leader, speaker, board member, and coach. She has over 15 years of experience in financial services and is a passionate connector and mentor within the tech ecosystem.

She was recognized as an Influential Woman in Finance by BCBusiness magazine, and volunteers at the UBC Sauder School of Business, as well as at TechWorks with Junior Achievement.

Lydia Varmazis

Head of Product, RBCx

Lydia oversees the development and growth of our product offerings, including our product strategy, visioning, and execution from concept to delivery. Lydia brings over 25 years of expertise in envisioning, launching, and commercializing transformative product solutions across enterprise SaaS, financial services and consumer tech sectors for companies of all sizes and stages, from startups to Fortune 500.

She has led product strategy, engineering and design teams for brands including PayPal, Checkr Inc. and Adobe. Most recently, Lydia founded a business consulting firm, where she advised and often operated as the interim Chief Product Officer for Enterprise SaaS, consumer tech and financial services clients navigating critical periods of growth and product transformations.

A seasoned and strategic product executive, Lydia’s experience highlights a demonstrated ability to conceive and develop products from inception to market success while crafting long-term strategic plans that align internal and external stakeholders, driving revenue growth and scalability. She believes product innovation results from harmonizing technology, design, and business while focusing intensely on the client.

Lydia holds an MBA from Pepperdine University, a degree in Graphic Communications Management from Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University) and completed an Executive Education program from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Alison Wilkie

Associate General Counsel, RBC Law Group

Alison leads a team of lawyers that support RBCx and RBC’s enterprise digital initiatives. With over 20 years of industry experience, Alison expertly enables her business partners to transform and deliver digital products and services. She also leverages her knowledge of emerging technologies to advise on innovative transaction structures and negotiate complex technology, M&A, and collaboration agreements.

Prior to joining RBC, Alison practiced corporate law at one of Canada’s leading law firms. Alison holds a BA from McMaster University and a LLB from Osgoode Hall Law School.

Sarah Wilkinson

CEO of Dr.Bill

Sarah is the CEO of Dr.Bill, a healthtech startup that makes billing easier for physicians. Sarah originally joined Dr.Bill as their Chief Operating Officer, and scaled the business to $1B+ in billings.

Previously, Sarah held a series of fintech roles at RBC across Canada and the U.S. in areas including innovation strategy, business development, product management, and M&A.

Sarah resides in Vancouver, and is a named inventor on three patents in the security and payments space.

Anne Woods

Managing Director, Life Sciences, Banking

Anne leads the Life Sciences practice at RBCx within the Banking pillar, overseeing a highly specialized team nationwide. Anne brings over 25 years of experience in life sciences and capital markets, with 15 years of consulting experience for pharma and biotech companies.

An active member of the Canadian life sciences community, Anne sits on the boards of Life Sciences Ontario and the Ontario Biotech Innovation Organization, along with being a regular panelist and contributor to podcasts and various publications. She also offers coaching and advice to early-stage founders, reinforcing her passion for nurturing the ecosystem and enabling the next generation of changemakers to push their next breakthrough forward. In 2021, Anne was recognized with the LSO Volunteer of the Year award for her work in connecting founders with experienced executives.

Anne holds a BSc from McGill University, an MA in leadership at the University of Guelph, and became a CFA Charterholder in 2001.