Sharon Hapton is the founder and CEO of Soup Sisters, a charity dedicated to ‘creating a stir’ in communities across North America. Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers have delivered nearly 2 million ‘Hugs in a Bowl’ of nourishing and nurturing soup nationwide to women's shelters and youth crisis centers. In addition to being a social entrepreneur, Sharon is a best-selling author of the Soup Sisters cookbook series.
Matias Marquez founded Buyatab in 2008. He has since received numerous awards and recognition for his entrepreneurial success, including: being named a BC Business Top 30 Under 30 recipient in 2016; winner of the 2016 EY Entrepreneur of The Year award; and being named to Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 for 2017. A digital gift card industry pioneer, Matias has been instrumental in driving Buyatab’s growth and customer-focused success. He is also an active advisor to early-stage technology companies. Matias holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Simon Fraser University and the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.
Emily Salsbury-Deveaux is an entrepreneur and a retailer. She first opened her fashion store EMMYDEVEAUX as a pop-up location in the West Edmonton Mall in February 2018. The store opened a permanent location in the fall of 2018 on Calgary Trail. She is former executive director of the School of Retailing at the University of Alberta.
Since 2013, Ron Spreeuwenberg has been the Co-Founder & CEO of HiMama based in Toronto, where he leads all aspects of a business that facilitates information sharing between child care programs and parents. The HiMama application aims to save child care and early learning programs time and money, while significantly enhancing family engagement through real-time sharing of digital media. Ron has an MBA from Harvard specializing in International Business and Entrepreneurship and a degree in Engineering from the University of Waterloo.
Teresa Spinelli is owner of the Italian Centre grocery and deli store chain with stores in Edmonton and Calgary. The store has been a fixture in the Edmonton market for decades and expanded to Calgary just a few years ago.
Pierre Séguin is a dynamic technology leader, innovator and product manager with almost two decades of experience creating, developing and implementing solutions for customers ranging from the biggest of multinationals to the smallest of children. He currently is working on a number of projects including being Expert in Residence for the Semaphore Research Cluster at University of Toronto. Semaphore is a research cluster at the iSchool, Faculty of Information, University of Toronto, dedicated to inclusive design in the area of mobile and pervasive computing.
When I first met Pierre, he was /and still is founder of Brili, an application that relieves families of stress by helping kids succeed in their daily routines. With Brilli, parents set up the activities their kids need to do when getting ready for school, after school or bedtime. These then come to life as a game on a mobile device. Parents can monitor in real-time from their own device while kids stay on task and earn rewards. Brili builds on the proven practice of using visual schedules to give kids structure and consistency, while making them more fun and easier to use.
Mallory McKewen founded and currently serves as President & CEO of BridesMade.ca, an e-commerce business focused on improving the bridesmaid dress shopping experience. BridesMade was born as an idea early in 2016 and has now serviced over 1000 bridesmaids Canada-wide, employing a team of 10. Before diving into entrepreneurship, Mallory completed both a BBA and MBA degree at Laurier and had worked in Sales & Corporate Finance.
Reema Duggal is a strategic IT professional and technology entrepreneur with significant experience in the global IT industry where she helps companies build revenues and profitability via expansion of their digital business channels.
Reema is a seasoned tech leader with a strong blend of revenue generation experience - Strategy, Marketing, Portfolio Management, and Delivery Management experience - Practice Leadership as well as Program and Project Management.
She is the President of the Sitaran Group, helping manufacturers, distributors, and tech companies build digital online sales channels. She is also a co-founder of Silicon Halton which started up nine years ago -and is where I met Reema. Now with over 1500 members Silicon Halton is a real hub of technology entrepreneurs in Halton – which includes Burlington, Oakville and Milton – a population base of 1 million plus and a real entrepreneurial hub in the GTHA economy.