It’s no secret that Canada is home to many incredible women entrepreneurs. As BDC’s new leader, Isabelle Hudon is on a mission to foster ambition and generate growth for these disruptive founders.
Isabelle Hudon is President and CEO of BDC, the bank for Canadian entrepreneurs.
As BDC’s first woman CEO, Ms. Hudon brings a deep business background and a clear vision for an inclusive economy to support growth for Canadian entrepreneurs. She is a champion of diversity, gender equality and the green economy, leading BDC’s 2,500-person team in their efforts to help Canadian entrepreneurs grow resilient, sustainable businesses.
From 2017 to 2021, Ms. Hudon served as Ambassador of Canada to France and Monaco, and the Personal Representative of the Prime Minister of Canada for La Francophonie. Previously, she was President and CEO (Quebec) and Senior Vice President of Sun Life Financial Canada, overseeing impressive growth across all business lines. She has held seats on numerous boards of directors including those of Hydro-Québec, Groupe Marcelle, Holt Renfrew and the Canada Council for the Arts, and is co-founder of The A Effect program to empower ambitious women.
Ms. Hudon received the Medal of the National Assembly of Quebec for her commitment to women’s ambition, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for raising awareness of culture in Canada and was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Law from Concordia University in 2017.
“Little girls look to be ballerinas whereas little boys are taught to look at hockey players. While hockey players are excellent, ballerinas are perfect. In business, you will never have a perfect product or service. Aim for excellence.”
On this week’s Startup Women Podcast, sponsored by the Business Development Bank of Canada and Scotiabank, Isabelle shares her goals for BDC and women founders, the importance of ambition, and aiming for excellence over perfection.