is chief operations and technology officer at Bank of America, and is a member of the company’s executive management team.
Since 2010, Bessant has led Global Technology and Operations (GT&O) and is responsible for delivering end-to-end technology and operating services across the company through nearly 95,000 employees and contractors in more than 35 countries around the world.
Global Technology and Operations provides the platforms and fulfillment services that sustain the company’s consumer banking, wealth management, commercial banking, treasury services, sales and trading, and investment banking businesses, as well as risk management, finance and other critical support functions. Bessant’s team also oversees the company’s business continuity and information security strategies and policies.
Bessant has held a number of senior leadership roles for the company. Most recently, she was president of Global Corporate Banking. Previously, she was president of Global Product Solutions and Global Treasury Services; chief marketing officer; president of Consumer Real Estate and Community Development Banking; national Small Business Segment executive; and market president of Bank of America, Florida. She joined Bank of America as a corporate banker in 1982.
Bessant actively represents the company on a number of important topics, including diversity and inclusion, as executive sponsor for the company’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Pride employee network and LGBT Ally program. For GT&O, she oversees diversity and inclusion forums and councils, including the Black Leadership Advisory Council, Hispanic/Leadership Advisory Council, LGBT Leadership Advisory Council, Military Leadership Advisory Council and Women in Technology & Operations. She was the recipient of the 2013 Out & Equal Champion Award for advocating the equality of LGBT employees in the workplace. Bessant also is active in the company’s 10-year, $125 billion environmental program, supporting efforts to reduce the environmental impact of its operations and engaging with key partners on the company’s behalf.
Bessant serves on the board of trustees for the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, one of the fastest-growing universities in the UNC system. She sits on the advisory board for the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and is lead director for Florida Blue, formerly Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida. She is the immediate past chair for the board of directors of Foundation for the Carolinas, one of the largest community foundations in the United States.
Bessant ranks No. 1 on Institutional Investor’s annual Tech 50 list of financial technology leaders recognized for their achievements and innovation; ranks No. 6 on American Banker’s “25 Most Powerful Women in Banking”; and has been named InformationWeek’s “Chief of the Year” as well as one of Computerworld’s “Premier 100” IT leaders.