Learn more about this inspirational group in the October edition of Financial Post Magazine
Honourees stated roles and organizations reflect positions held at the time of award.
Taylor is Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Diply. His vision of a publishing platform on the cutting edge of digital marketing technologies has seen unprecedented success. In his capacity as CEO, Taylor is committed to retaining strong local connections while establishing international scope and brand recognition. In addition to integrating charitable initiatives into his professional work, Taylor has engaged his values of community participation and activism through volunteering with Special Olympics for eight years, coaching softball and alpine skiing.
Since the inception of Plastic Mobile in 2007, Melody’s leadership and strategic thinking has made tidal waves across the Canadian digital industry. As President and COO of Plastic, Melody has led countless groundbreaking initiatives, collecting a plethora of awards and accolades, including the Webby’s, W3’s, and Davies along the way. Through her passion and business savvy, Melody has won the trust and confidence of some of the most monumental brands in the country, including Shoppers Drug Mart, RBC, Cineplex, AIR MILES, and Pizza Pizza. Not only is Melody leading the most awarded mobile marketing agency — that has grown at an astronomical rate year after year — but she finds time to mentor young women, and enlighten audiences all over North America about the impact of technology on business and consumerism. Driven by her passion to challenge the status quo, and formulate new technologies to enhance the human experience, Melody’s foresight for opportunities in the industry has paved the path for unparalleled success in mobile marketing.
Sachin is the Chief Executive Officer of Think Research, and in 2014 he completed a management buyout of the company to become the largest shareholder and transfer control of the company from early investors to management. Prior to joining Think Research, Sachin served as the Deputy Chief of Staff for the Office of the Leader of the Opposition, where he managed six departments, including the Leader’s Executive Team. Outside of his work as CEO, Sachin has served on the Board of Directors for numerous community outreach programs, including Dixon Hall Neighbourhood Services and the People with AIDS Foundation. He has also been an active member of Toronto’s business community as a board member for Meta Inc. and the Council for Canadian Innovators.
Dr Foteini Agrafioti is the Chief Science Officer at RBC and Head of RBC Research. She is responsible for RBC’s intellectual property portfolio in artificial intelligence and oversees all R&D activities in the Toronto and Edmonton offices. Prior to that, Foteini was the CIO of Architech, where she led Research and Innovation. In 2011 she founded and served as CTO at Nymi, a biometrics security company and maker of the Nymi wristband. The Nymi wristband is the commercialization of Foteini’s doctoral research between 2006 and 2010. Foteini is an inventor of HeartID, the first-ever biometric technology to authenticate users based on their unique cardiac rhythms. She is a TED speaker and serves on the editorial review boards of several scientific journals. She was named “Inventor of the Year” in 2012 at the University of Toronto where she received the PhD degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering.
SVP & Regional Managing Director, Canada, CH2M, BC
As SVP and Canadian Regional Managing Director for CH2M HILL, a global consulting, design, engineering, and management firm, Ben leads a team of 3000 people across Canada and manages annual revenues of $1 billion. Ben is a highly accomplished, results-oriented professional with a demonstrated background of effective, proactive leadership. Prior to his current role, Ben served as regional business group manager for CH2M’s Water business in Canada, as well as prior leadership roles in their energy and industrial markets. Before joining CH2M, Ben served in program and project management posts with Suncor Energy and Imperial Oil. Ben has overcome professional and personal challenges, including a life-changing accident in 2005, while proving himself as an inspirational leader with strategic vision.
Corey is the co-founder and President of Koru Distribution, a distributor of eco-friendly lifestyle brands to Canadian and US retailers. Prior to starting Koru Distribution, after graduating from university he founded Green Students Fundraising, which helped schools and other non-profits in Canada raise money responsibly through the sale of eco-friendly products. Corey started Koru Distribution with the purpose of helping to make eco-friendly products more accessible and affordable to Canadians. As this market segment shifts from niche to mainstream his focus continues on this purpose of connecting a marketplace of new brands and new retailers.
Dr Liam Brunham is an assistant professor of medicine at the University of British Columbia and a Principal Investigator at the Centre for Heart and Lung Innovation. While completing his PhD in Medical Genetics, he was awarded the Governor’s General’s gold medal, the most prestigious award offered to graduating doctoral students at Canadian Universities. Liam is a general internist with a focus on clinical lipidology and is an attending physician at the Health Heart Program Prevention clinic at St. Paul’s hospital, one of the largest specialty lipid clinics in Canada. Liam’s research focuses on understanding how changes in specific genes contribute to differences in drug-response as well as to alterations in plasma lipid levels and their relationship to metabolic and cardiovascular disease. His laboratory uses cutting-edge approaches in human genetics including genome-wide association studies and next-generation sequencing to investigate the role of genetic variation in these phenotypes. His laboratory also uses genome-editing tools and stem-cell based cellular models to dissect the functional impact of genetic variants and investigate molecular mechanisms underlying adverse drug reactions.
Scott is Vice President, Finance & CFO at Pembina, overseeing the financial operations, investor relations, treasury, tax, corporate planning, corporate development and capital market financings. Prior to his current role, Scott served as Pembina's VP, Capital Markets and VP, Corporate Development & Investor Relations, guiding Pembina through its corporate-level financial analyses of business opportunities in addition to strategic development and planning, acquisitions and divestitures. He also supported the company’s participation in the capital markets by evaluating various financing alternatives, and oversaw Pembina’s investor relations and related marketing initiatives. Before joining Pembina, Scott spent seven years in energy-focused investment banking where he provided advice and counsel related to mergers and acquisitions, dispositions, joint ventures and equity and debt financings. He has considerable experience in most aspects of the energy industry, including: petroleum, natural gas and other product pipelines and related infrastructure facilities.
Established in 2002, Diva International, Inc. was founded by Carinne Chambers-Saini and her mother Francine who developed The DivaCup to offer women worldwide a reliable and more eco-friendly approach to feminine hygiene. The DivaCup is the only real innovation in feminine hygiene in decades, providing the most convenient, clean and comfortable way to address period care on the market today. The mother-daughter duo faced many challenges along the way, as they were on an uphill battle up against large multinationals in an over $3 Billion Dollar industry. They pushed forward despite many failures and never lost sight of their vision to change the world one DivaCup at a time! With the recent retirement of her mother, Carinne is poised to lead Diva International and her team into the continually evolving, rapidly changing business environment.
Ian Crosby, the 30-year-old Co-Founder and CEO of Bench, was a student at UBC’s, Sauder School of Business by age 16. He has worked as a bookkeeper and a treasurer at various companies and was the first management consultant at Bain & Company to be recruited from the West Coast. He’s passionate about steering education more towards technology and doesn’t shy away from discussing the future of banking. Ian topped the Forbes’ Top 30-Under-30 list last year, after receiving the same accolade from BC Business. He has appeared in Fast Company, Entrepreneur, The Globe and Mail and Inc.com.
Paul is Senior Vice President of Power Corporation and Power Financial. Before joining Power in May 2014, he was Assistant Vice President at Great-West Lifeco, and he previously worked in project management and corporate strategy at Imerys in France. Paul began his career with Goldman Sachs in the US. He is a director of Great-West Life, Investors Group, Mackenzie, Pargesa, Groupe Bruxelles Lambert, Personal Capital and IntegraMed. He is Executive Chairman of Sagard Capital, Executive Chairman of Portag3, Chairman of Wealthsimple, Chairman Peak Achievement Athletics (formerly PSG), and Vice-Chairman of Imerys. Paul is the Founder and Honorary Chairman of Young Canadians in Finance. He served as Co- Chair of the True Patriot Love 2014 Arctic Expedition to the Magnetic North Pole. Paul is also the private sector campaign Chair of the Kenojuak Cultural Centre and Print Shop. He also is a member of the Board of Directors of The Next 36 and IVADO.
Avik is Managing Director, Head of Natural Resources for Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and serves as a member of the Private Investments Investment Committee. Prior to joining CPPIB, Avik was President & CEO of Remvest Energy Partners in Houston, USA. Previously, he was a Founder and Chief Financial Officer of Remora Energy, a private energy company. He has been active in the global energy sector since 1999 with roles across industry, private equity and investment banking. He has worked with a number of organizations including First Reserve, Deutsche Bank and EnCana Corporation. Avik is a member of the board of directors of Teine Energy and Crestone Peak Resources, where he serves as Chairman, as well as the boards of Seven Generations Energy, Longpoint Minerals, YPE and Enactus Canada. Avik is a co-founder of Coyotes Management LLC, the General Partner for the Arizona Coyotes Hockey Club.
Tariq founded The Rumie Initiative after a notable career at the intersection of finance, technology and emerging markets. Prior to Rumie, Tariq led a successful career in finance, beginning as a Palo Alto-based technology investment banker in the group that led the IPOs of Google, Amazon and Cisco. He next joined NYC-based private equity firm MHR Fund Management, where he became the firm’s youngest partner in 2006 after leading numerous successful turnarounds of technology companies. In 2004, Tariq led early work to bring mobile phones into emerging markets as a ‘leapfrog’ innovation, back when the idea of the masses from Cairo to Calcutta skipping landlines altogether to go directly to mobile phones sounded far-fetched to many. Tariq sees a similar ‘perfect storm’ of market forces enabling a pragmatic, market-based solution to global education that will usher in another watershed moment in international development. Today, Rumie has projects in over 20 countries. Tariq was born and raised in Canada to parents who emigrated from Kenya and speaks four languages.
As Co-Founder and CEO of Goodfood Jonathan leads a dinner subscription service that makes it easy to prepare delicious original recipes at home, using fresh ingredients sourced from local farms. Launched in 2014 in Montreal and employing 200 people, Goodfood delivers more than 200,000 meals each month to subscribers across Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes. Jonathan and his co-founders launched Goodfood to addresses Canadians’ desire for healthy, fresh and locally sourced food. Each Goodfood delivery comes with all the raw ingredients needed to cook delicious meals for the week, in the exactly right portions to reduce unnecessary waste. To date Goodfood has raised over $22M Canadian from top-tier investors, most recently including institutional investors in an initial public offering. Prior to founding Goodfood, Jonathan practiced investment banking at RBC Capital Markets, and co-founded MTL Capital, a privately-held, entrepreneurial investment firm seeking to acquire and manage a small to medium sized business in Canada.
Harley Finkelstein is an entrepreneur, lawyer, and the Chief Operating Officer at Shopify. He founded his first company at age 17 while a student at McGill. Harley completed his law degree as well as his MBA at the University of Ottawa, where he co-founded the JD/MBA Student Society and the Canadian MBA Oath. Harley is on the Board of the C100, is an Advisor to Felicis Ventures and Omers Ventures, and is one of the new “Dragons” on CBC’s Next Gen Den. Harley was inducted into the Order of Ottawa in 2016, and received the Angel Investor of the Year Award in 2017.
Cody Green is the Founder & Co-CEO of Canada Drives. Since 2010, Cody and his team have built Canada Drives into one of the leading consumer brands in Canada for financial products and Canada’s first FinTech company to facilitate auto financing through a purpose-built, online platform.
Prof. Patrick Gunning conducted Postdoctoral Research at Yale University before accepting an Assistant Professor position at the University of Toronto (U of T). In 9 years, Patrick has authored 85 publications, 11 US patent applications, given 120 invited lectures, and attracted $21 M in funding. He is the recipient of many awards including: David Rae Memorial Award for innovative research by the Leukemia Lymphoma Society; Ontario Early Researcher Award; Boehringer Ingelheim Young Investigator Award; 2010 University of Glasgow Young Alumnus of the Year; 2011, 2012 and 2013 CSC Ichikizaki award for a Young Chemist; 2011 Dean’s Research Excellence Award at U of T Mississauga; and was named the 2012 RSC MedChemComm Emerging Investigator Lectureship by the Royal Society for Chemistry (UK). In 2013, Patrick was featured in the Toronto Star’s 2013 Top 10 to Watch, named a Canada Research Chair in Medicinal Chemistry, and a winner of the 2013 U of T Inventor of the Year Award. In 2015, he was the Rose-Winer Levin Lecurer at Dana-Farber, Harvard University and the U of T McLean Award winner. In 2016, Patrick was named the Canadian Society for Chemistry’s Bernard Belleau award winner and was promoted to Full Professor. He will be the inaugural director of the Centre of Medicinal Chemistry at U of T.
Reetu is Chief Operating Officer of the Easton’s Group of Hotels and The Gupta Group, Canada’s largest private hotel development corporation. The companies own a portfolio of over 30 hotels across the country as well as residential condominium projects across the Greater Toronto Area. Reetu joined the company in 2008 and quickly progressed within while successfully launching numerous condo projects and continuing the growth of the hotel division. Reetu is a member of several corporate and not-for-profit boards, and co-chairs many committees including: University Health Network’s Diwali Gala, chairs the City of Toronto’s External Advisory Committee for Canada’s Sesquicentennial Anniversary, Advisory Board Member for Ryerson University’s School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. Reetu is also the President of The Shakti Society, where she teaches complimentary monthly meditation classes. She is a frequent guest speaker and is featured in many publications and the media.
Jeremy is a New York Times bestselling author, an award-winning innovation expert, "one of the most sought-after keynote speakers on the planet" (The Sun Newspaper) and the CEO of Trend Hunter – the world's #1 trend firm with 3 billion views from 140,000,000 visitors and an army of 200,000 idea hunters. Prior to Trend Hunter, Jeremy grew a $1 billion portfolio for a bank, and today, over 500 brands, billionaires and CEOs rely on his innovation keynotes and consulting firm to ACCELERATE INNOVATION and MAKE CHANGE HAPPEN, including Disney, Starbucks, Red Bull, Netflix, LEGO, Victoria Secret, Coca-Cola, IBM and Wells Fargo. He's even helped NASA prototype the Journey to Mars!
Michael is the Founder and CEO of Wealthsimple, Canada's leading online investing service. Frustrated about his options as a retail investor in Canada, Michael started Wealthsimple to make smart investing simple, low-cost, and accessible to everyone regardless of age or net worth. He assembled a team of the top minds in finance and technology to bring this plan to life. Wealthsimple launched in 2014 and quickly established itself as a fintech leader in Canada. In just two years, it has grown to manage over $1 billion for 30,000 people. Prior to founding Wealthsimple, Michael led product and marketing at 1000memories, a Y Combinator start-up that was acquired by Ancestry.com in 2012. Following the acquisition, Michael ran Ancestry.com's Canadian business and launched two of the most successful new products in company history, now used by millions of subscribers around the world. Michael started his career at McKinsey & Company. He has been called an Industry Mover by the Financial Post, a Change Agent by Canadian Business Magazine, and one of Toronto’s 50 most influential people by Toronto Life. He won Entrepreneur of the Year at the Canadian Startup Awards in March 2017, and is a winner of a 2016 EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Brad Katsuyama is the Co-founder and CEO of IEX, America’s newest stock exchange. IEX was prominently featured in the Michael Lewis best-seller Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt, in which Brad was the lead protagonist in discovering and exposing the pernicious relationship between national stock exchanges and certain high-speed traders. Before co-founding IEX, Brad held a series of management positions at the Royal Bank of Canada, most recently as Global Head of Electronic Sales and Trading, overseeing business lines in Canada, the US and Europe. He was named to both Fortune and Crain's 40 Under 40 lists, won the Adam Smith Prize at the Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Awards, and is an Ernst & Young's Entrepreneur of the Year. Brad has been featured in Wall Street Journal, Forbes, 60 Minutes, CNN and BBC, and has been the cover story for several magazines, including the New York Times Magazine and Bloomberg Markets.
Bilal is the Founding Managing Director of OneEleven, a scale-up innovation hub focused on helping Canada’s most promising, high-growth start-ups commercialize their technologies and scale their operations. OneEleven is a unique partnership between industry, venture capital, government and academia. Prior to OneEleven, Bilal was the Director of Policy and Senior Advisor to three consecutive Ministers of Economic Development, Trade and Innovation for the Province of Ontario. Bilal is a Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto where he both teaches and advises on innovation policy and is also a Fellow at the Brookfield Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Ryerson University. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Club of Toronto; the Rogers Small Business and Entrepreneurship Advisory Board; the Business Advisory Group of the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan (ORPP), the Advisory Board of IBM’s I^3 Project (an IBM Watson initiative); the Advisory Board of the Canadian Innovation Exchange (CIX), and the Advisory Board of Technicity at the City of Toronto.
Alexandre is President of the Lefebvre Group and several of its divisions. Close to 600 employees are under his management. He maintains close relationships with strategic customers and leads the Ontario expansion for the group. In the last 10 years, Alexandre took the organization from a regional company to a National one, and expanded it to Asia, Europe, and USA Alex is active in the community and is a board member of the ILDC group, a 7 billion buying group in Canada. He was also recently nominated on the board of governors of the Quebec Council of Employers (CPQ). With a passion for languages, he speaks French, English, Portuguese and Spanish.
Tony is the co-founder and CEO of Fleet Complete, one of the fastest growing global technology companies. As CEO, he drives the company’s vision and inspires various teams to achieve ambitious growth goals, while continuously innovating leading-edge software solutions. His leadership and in-depth knowledge of software design, have been instrumental to Fleet Complete’s current position as the global IoT industry leader. During his college years, Tony founded a first level systems support house and IT solutions provider, Canlogic Solutions. In the late 90’s, he identified the opportunity to develop a software solution for the courier industry, and teamed up with Andrew Merisanu to create Courier Complete, the genesis to what is today Fleet Complete. The Company has not only grown continuously since its inception, but has also ranked, year after year, on such prestigious lists as Profit500 and 200, Fast500, and Braham 300, and he has been recognized as one of Canada’s best young entrepreneurs, featured in numerous publications.
Matias founded Buyatab in 2009 and has grown the company into a global leader in digital gift-giving.Buyatab partners with globally recognized brands such as Whole Foods Market, Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts, Hyatt Hotels, Cineplex Entertainment, Tim Hortons, The Gap, Saks Off Fifth, Fairmont Hotels, Hudson’s Bay and many more. Matias has received many awards for his entrepreneurial success, including being recognized as a 2016 BC Business Top 30 Under 30 and 2016 EY Entrepreneur of the year. He is an active advisor to early-stage technology companies. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Simon Fraser University and the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.
Rachel is a Saskatchewan-born entrepreneur and mother of three. Since starting Hillberg & Berk in 2007, Rachel's ambition has created opportunities for Hillberg & Berk with the Oscars, Dragon's Den, the Olympics and Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, who has worn a custom Hillberg & Berk design many times. Through perseverance, grit and optimism, Rachel has grown the company to over 130 employees, five stores and over 80 wholesale stores across Canada. Rachel is the epitome of an empowered woman, and her sparkling character has set the tone for the unique Hillberg & Berk culture, helping women find their confidence and flourish, from the inside-out.
Robert is a cleantech entrepreneur inspired to find profitable and sustainable solutions for the cement and concrete sectors. He is part of the global race to develop affordable carbon-negative concrete at scale. As Founder and CEO of cleantech developer, CarbonCure Technologies, Robert has earned a reputation of uncovering innovative ways to raise profits, lower greenhouse gases and improve the material performance of concrete. His passion for developing solutions that combine sustainability and innovation has led to the development of the CarbonCure technology. In his spare time, Robert is an avid outdoors enthusiast and devotes his time to nature conservation and environmental community events.
Tom is Assistant Vice President for BDC Capital, the venture capital and private equity arm of the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC). Prior to the BDC, he was a senior engagement manager at McKinsey & Co and a member of McKinsey’s global health practice group, where he gained extensive experience in development projects in Nigeria, Senegal, DRC, Pakistan, & Zambia. Tom spent time on sabbatical at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to support the leadership team in developing and executing their ambitious family planning objectives. Previously, Tom was with McCarthy Tetrault, the International Criminal Court, the OSCE mission in Kosovo, and the United Nations Assistance Mission to the Khmer Rouge Tribunal. He is an alumnus of the Governor General’s Leadership Conference, and is a member of the board of governors of Presbyterian College in Montreal and the Global Health International Advisory Board of McGill University.
Dr Nav Persaud is a staff physician and scientist at the Department of Family and Community Medicine at St. Michael’s Hospital, and an Assistant Professor at the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto. Nav’s research focuses on enhancing the ability of primary care to address health inequities through the development and application of high quality evidence. He is currently leading practice-based randomized controlled trials including one to explore the impacts of offering primary care patients free and convenient access to essential medications. Nav’s trials are developed with ongoing input from community members and patients and he engages with decision makers to ensure research findings are translated into policy improvements.
Shahrzad is the Founder and CEO of BroadbandTV (BBTV), a digital entertainment company which exists to empower creators and inspire audiences. Shahrzad is building one of the strongest ecosystems in digital video worldwide, by connecting BBTV’s owned & operated brands, content, top talent, millennial audiences and digital platforms, powered by its smart proprietary technology. Shahrzad is accredited with pioneering both the technology and business model that made peace between large entertainment entities like the NBA and their fans that were uploading premium content online. BBTV is also the third largest video property in the world – in terms of unique viewers – following only Google and Facebook. In addition to BBTV’s achievements, Shahrzad actively pursues ways to encourage social change. She is the co-founder of the world’s first Chopra Yoga in partnership with Dr.Deepak Chopra and has investments in a broad portfolio of businesses.
Hossein is the Founder and CEO of Flybits, a context-as-a-service company, with offices in Toronto, Palo Alto and London. His research explores artificial intelligence, mobile human-computer interaction and the effective design of data-driven services. Hossein has written more 30 publications and received 10 patents in ubiquitous computing. He is an academic entrepreneur and is Associate Professor at Ryerson University and a Visiting Professor at MIT Media Lab.
Irfhan has been a strategic consultant, public company senior executive and investor for over 15 years. He has served as an Adjunct Professor at the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia where he taught in the areas of finance, public policy, strategy and leadership. Irfhan presently sits on the boards of two Totem investee companies: Carrot Insights and The Organic Box. He is actively involved in civic affairs as a board member of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship, Vice Chair of Glenbow Museum, member of the Harvard Business School Global Alumni Board, and member of the Calgary 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games Bid Exploration Committee. Irfhan is a recipient of The Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and the Arnold Edinborough Award.
Alex Robertson is the Chief Executive Officer at Camp Ooch, leading a team of over 60 staff and over 450 annual volunteers. In 1983 an ambitious group of volunteers banded together to form a summer camp unlike any other in Canada. Exclusively serving children with cancer, Camp Oochigeas (Ooch) is a privately funded camp, completely free for every child, providing the opportunity to explore enriching, challenging, fun experiences through what is fondly referred to as the Magic of Ooch. In his role, Alex oversees the entire management of the organization including programming, operations, finance, and development. Camp Ooch serves over 1,500 children with and affected by cancer and their families each year, and continues to be the only overnight camp in Ontario to offer onsite IV chemotherapy and blood transfusions. Often referred to as the social cure of cancer, Ooch has expanded programs year-round in Muskoka, at the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), McMaster Children’s Hospital, Children’s Hospital, London Health Sciences Centre and Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) and Ooch Downtown.
David is an entrepreneur and retail thought-leader, best known for bringing radical innovation to a 5,000 year product category with the launch of DAVIDsTEA, the company he co-founded in 2008. During his time at DAVIDsTEA, David grew the company from a single store to a 200 store retail giant. In 2015, DAVIDsTEA became a publicly-traded company on the NASDAQ, and since launch, the brand has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Women’s Wear Daily, and Fast Company. When David left DAVIDsTEA early in 2016 to pursue new entrepreneurial endeavours, the company was seventh on the list of Canada’s most trusted brands. His vision for DAVIDsTEA was undeniably innovative — in fact, Forbes named DAVIDsTEA one of the 25 most innovative consumer and retail brands in the world. However, he attributes much of the brand's success to his ability to build a team of dedicated, smart and passionate people. And now, with the launch of his latest brand, David has once again assembled a world-class team to bring his vision to life. Looking to bring a fresh perspective to the fast-casual restaurant category, David is launching Mad Radish, a new concept combining nutritious, chef-driven salads with operational efficiency and an eye for branding and design.
Joshua grew up on the Prairies and left a career in banking to start SkipTheDishes with his brothers. “Skip” is now the largest and fastest growing restaurant delivery network in Canada and the Midwest US, operating in 34 cities. Last year Skip was bought by a British company in a $200 million deal and was the largest tech company acquisition in Canada. Skip remains based in Winnipeg and Saskatoon and has 386 of the top performing people in the region solving advanced tech challenges to enable food delivery.
Matt is Senior Vice President, Strategy & Corporate Development at Hootsuite, where he is responsible for Business Development, Alliances, Platform, Financings and M&A. He has helped grow Hootsuite from 30 to almost 1,000 people, raise over $200M, acquire 8 companies and build the market leading social relationship platform. Matt has spent his career starting and growing companies as a technology investor, advisor and executive.
Katie is the Chief of Staff to the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau. She previously served as the National Campaign Co-Chair and National Campaign Director for Trudeau on the successful 2015 election campaign. Her leadership spearheaded a new focus on grassroots organizing and innovative campaign technologies that contributed to the election of the first Liberal majority mandate from Canadians in 15 years. She has led and advised on multiple campaigns including her role as National Campaign Director on Justin Trudeau's Leadership Campaign in 2013. Over her career Katie has provided senior counsel on a wide range of federal and provincial issues to non-profit organizations, the private and public sectors, the Liberal Party of Canada and the Ontario Liberal Party.
Dr Aristotle Voineskos is Director of the Slaight Family Centre for Youth in Transition, at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, Canada. The Slaight Centre is Canada's first dedicated to understanding and treating severe mental illness and addictions for youth. The main goal of the Slaight Centre is to put more young people experiencing severe mental illness on a path to recovery through a combination of outstanding clinical care, research, and education. Aristotle is also a Canada Research Chair and Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto. His own research has made major advances in the neurobiology of mental illnesses across the lifespan in psychiatric brain disorders. He has developed new ways of combining brain imaging and genetics, and has also developed an international reputation in multi-centre brain imaging studies dedicated toward a better understanding and treatment of mental illness. In a short time Aristotle has won a number of national and international awards for his work, holds several major federal grants from Canada and the US, and has already trained a number of outstanding young scientists who are going on to major achievement themselves.
Hayley’s most profound project has been the creation of the Canadian Tire Wickenheiser World Female Hockey Festival, which hosts over 2,000 female hockey players from around the world in Calgary annually giving girls access not just to hockey, but to world-class educational sessions both on and off the ice. She completed her Masters, running a study that is researching the connection between physical activity and the neurology of autistic youth. Hayley is a decorated Olympian having led her team to four gold and one silver medal. For the 2014 Sochi Olympics Hayley was selected to be the flag bearer for the Canadian Olympic team in the Opening Ceremonies and was elected to the IOC Athletes Commission. Hayley’s achievements include: Sports Illustrated number 20 of 25 Toughest Athletes in the World, a two-time finalist for the Women’s Sports Foundation Team Athlete of The Year, named multiple times among the “Power 50” influencers in sport, and named among QMI Agency’s top 10 “Greatest Female Athletes in the History of Sports.” In 2011, Hayley was appointed to the Order of Canada and in 2015 she was inducted to Canada’s Walk of Fame.
Kristen is the CEO + creator of THE TEN SPOT®. Her main focus is on brand oversight, development and expansion – she has her hands in everything; from developing new service protocols to designing collateral and wining and dining new franchise partners. Kristen was named one of PROFIT/chatelaine magazine’s top 100 female entrepreneurs in Canada in 2016 and has landed THE TEN SPOT® on PROFIT 500’s fastest growing companies in 2016. Since its first opening THE TEN SPOT® has grown exponentially across Canada with plans for expansion into the US. Kristen is also a speaker with the Canadian national speaker’s bureau.