Alberta Cefis
EVP, Head of Global Transaction Banking, Scotiabank

Global transaction bankers know all about cross-border operations. So it makes sense that Scotiabank's Alberta Cefis is dedicated to breaking down barriers in her professional and philanthropic efforts.

Cefis, who serves as head of global transaction banking at the Canadian lender, founded the Women in Global Transaction Banking initiative in 2007 in order to connect women in her line of business. The group operates in more than 55 countries and includes members from a variety of banks, with each geographical region offering an array of forums for women to discuss topics like career advancement, leadership and maintaining work/life balance.

Cefis also founded the GTB@Work in the Community program at Scotiabank, which fosters teamwork through volunteering. In Canada, employees work at food banks and plant green rooftop gardens, while in Lima, Peru, the team developed a program at a women's cooperative to help women learn how to build websites and do financial accounting.

Meanwhile, Cefis continues working to smash gender barriers on her own team. In 2013, 48% of the 19 people on her executive team were women, and women were chosen to fill all three vacant vice president positions.

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