For O'Connor, the ultimate potential of technology in banking is enabling simplicity and streamlining the customer experience. "Technology is essential in allowing the customer to interact with us whenever and wherever they want, and to make that interaction seamless," she adds.
In fact, O'Connor says technology has played a critical role in all the places she's worked. Prior to joining Bank of America in 2010, she was at the Depository Trust & Clearing Corp., where she was managing director and CTO responsible for overseeing the critical IT infrastructure, including core networking services, processing and messaging systems, distributed systems and business continuity. Prior to this, O'Connor spent 19 years at Lehman Brothers and held numerous technology management positions, including CIO and global head of business continuity. While at Lehman, she created LehmanLive, a Web portal that delivered the company's products and services -- from trading to employee benefits processing -- to clients and employees. LehmanLive proved crucial following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks when the firm was shut out of its headquarters at the World Financial Center, the site of its primary data center and 2,700 direct lines to clients. Although 5,500 employees were forced to work from home offices, hotel rooms or borrowed space, LehmanLive allowed the firm to resume critical functions.
While not in the office, O'Connor is an avid swimmer -- she used to swim competitively -- and has passed that love on to her children, who are now also getting into surfing. She recently purchased a swimming performance monitor wristwatch, which represents the synergy of her two passions. "I love technology, as you might imagine, and I would describe myself as a collector of gadgets," she says.
CIO, consumer banking technology and operations, legacy asset servicing technology, Bank of America
Professional honors: Named one of the "Top Power Women" in technology by Forbes.com; sits on the nPower board of directors
Prior roles: CTO, Depository Trust & Clearing Corp.; CIO and global head of business continuity, Lehman Brothers; applications architect for AT&T Bell Laboratories