Surrey Women in Business Awards
On Thursday, March 9, 2017, the Surrey Board of Trade will host the 8th Annual Surrey Women in Business Awards Luncheon, with Presenting Sponsor Vancity Savings Credit Union. The event recognizes the hard work of Surrey’s businesswomen and their contributions to Surrey.
The event’s philosophy has been rooted in the purpose of educating our audience. Some of the best and brightest women of Surrey’s business community are celebrated and receive well-deserved recognition. The purpose of the event is to inspire, motivate and educate the audience.
It’s a story that has been heard many times: a goal oriented businesswoman works long hours, does a great job and puts her heart and soul in to her job but doesn’t quite know how to climb the career ladder to the boardroom or find the resources to be a business owner. The numbers speak for themselves. More than half the companies in Canada have no female directors. And only 2% of chairs and chief executives are women in Canada.
- In 2013 it was reported that Canada is falling behind other countries when it comes to putting women on corporate boards, according to a report by TD Economics. While participation in the labour force has increased significantly for women, that change has yet to be reflected at the top of Canada’s largest companies, according to the report.
- According to a University of Ottawa report, putting the Surrey Board of Trade’s government advocacy hat on, Canada lacks a coordinated national women’s economic development strategy. Their report suggests, “(A) national strategy would support increased funding to existing women-focused small business training programs and program expansion. The report also indicates that to clear the path for more Women-owned businesses would be to increase access to commercial capital and dedicated financial resources.
Further a strategic Small and medium sized business procurement policy is an under-utilized mechanism to enhance supplier diversity for different levels of government and hence, Canadian competitiveness.”
- In Canada, 4 out of 5 businesses are started by women. Representing 47% of small and medium-sized enterprises, women-owned businesses are growing at a faster rate than those run by men
Women business owners generate almost 40% of their sales in foreign markets and provide jobs for 1.7 million Canadians.
Today’s Canadian woman in business and in leadership positions:
- Is more likely to be highly educated
- She’s probably married, as self-employed women are more likely to be married than Canadian women in general (77 percent as opposed to 58 percent of the general population).
Through the years at this event the Surrey Board of Trade sees Surrey’s business landscape, full of entrepreneurial women who have developed a strategy, have created a vision and communicated this vision to bring them to be recognized at this prestigious awards program.
This year’s event will feature Margaret Trudeau as keynote speaker.
Margaret Trudeau is a Canadian icon, celebrated both for her role in the public eye and as a respected mental-health issues advocate. From becoming a prime minister’s wife at a young age, to the loss of both her son and her former husband, to living with bi-polar disorder, Margaret tirelessly shares her personal stories to remind others of the importance of nurturing the body, mind, and spirit.
Margaret is the author of four books, including her bestselling title, Changing My Mind, which charts her life’s ups and downs, and her latest title, The Time of Your Life, which offers women an inspirational and practical approach to creating a healthy, happy, secure and satisfying future.
Margaret sits on the Executive Advisory Board of the UBC Mental Health Institute as a community advocate, and she is the Honorary President of WaterAid, a charitable Canadian non-governmental agency that is dedicated to helping poor communities in developing countries build sustainable water-supply and sanitation services.
She is also the proud mother to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Nomination Deadline is February 8, 2017 by 5:00pm
The Surrey Board of Trade reserves the right to move a nomination into another category. Past winners of the award may not be nominated again for a period of 3 years after a win.
Is an owner or significant shareholder of any business size.
Holds a senior/executive level position in a public or private-owned business.
Nominee has a professional designation, i.e. accountant, notary, lawyer, engineer.
- Not-for-Profit Leader
Nominee holds a paid position as CEO, Executive Director or senior manager.
- Social Trailblazer
A founder or leader of an organization, initiative, or project that makes a significant social, economic, or environmental impact by building progressive and sustainable solutions to a complex issue facing our local community.
- Proven business acumen
- Outstanding leadership skills
- Notable achievements in her area of expertise
- Exemplary community involvement
- Demonstration of a balanced lifestyle
Please submit your nomination to:
Sara Hodson – LIVE WELL Exercise Clinic
Sara Hodson is Founder & President of LIVE WELL Exercise Clinic in South Surrey, delivering clinically supervised exercise and education to prevent and treat chronic disease. Sara lives to maximize clients’ health, in spite of their health issues, and has fun while doing it! LIVE WELL’s 3 pioneering clinics (two in Surrey) specialize in helping sedentary people with health conditions such as diabetes, obesity and heart disease overhaul their lifestyle by offering medically-designed, customized fitness programs, nutritional counseling, goal-setting, and habit formation in a safe, supportive and supervised environment. She and her staff work in the emerging field of Exercise is Medicine, to help people live healthier, more active lives while reducing the burden of chronic disease on the health care system.
Amanjit Lidder – MNP LLP
Amanjit is a partner in the MNP’s Surrey office and the Regional Tax Leader for the Lower Mainland Region. Amanjit provides specialized tax services to small and medium-sized organizations in a variety of industries, helping her clients pursue attractive tax opportunities. Working one-on-one with clients, she provides advice and strategies for corporate & personal tax planning, estate & succession planning and corporate reorganizations, as well as mergers & acquisition planning. She is currently on the British Columbia Tax Conference Program Committee and is a former member of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA) Income Tax Education Committee. She holds a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) and Chartered Accountant (CA) designation, qualifying in 2001.
Not-for-Profit Leader Category
Melanie Houlden – Surrey Libraries
Melanie is the Chief Librarian for Surrey Libraries, and is responsible for planning, leading and delivering a range of library services to meet the evolving needs of Surrey residents. She recommends and implements strategies, policies, and plans to achieve the vision, mission, goals, and values of Surrey Libraries. She helps create an organizational culture that is energetic, achievement-oriented and client service-focused, achieving the highest professional standards in the management and delivery of library services. She works with senior staff at the City of Surrey to deliver aligned and seamless services in accordance with Surrey Council priorities. With over 32 years of progressive public library experience, Melanie has served as a role model for hundreds of women in the profession and in Surrey.
Janice Comeau – LMS Reinforcing Steel Group
Janice has been the Chief Financial Officer of LMS Reinforcing Steel Group since January 2013, and has 33 years of experience as a chartered accountant. Janice demonstrates her ability to drive financial results at LMS through strategic financial planning and execution; building a motivated, skilled professional team; and implementing business controls across all financial functions. At any given time, LMS has 200+ projects underway and 650 employees on payroll. At the time Janice was hired, there were significant issues related to working capital management. Under Janice’s leadership, LMS has achieved greater project profitability, enhanced communication with clients, earlier detection of issues and has greater insight into team performance.
Social Trailblazer Category
MaryAnne Connor – NightShift Street Ministries Society
MaryAnne Connor is Founder and President of NightShift Street Ministries Society, based in downtown Surrey. Her vision for NightShift continues to grow. Originally a nightly service to feed the hungry, the ministry is now an all-encompassing centre of caring, a place for all people to find purpose. MaryAnne continually ensures that services are relevant to people in need and easily accessible to everyone. In addition to supporting the mission of the ministry, MaryAnne created a clothing donation program that operates through Sisters Thrift Boutique. Not only does this ensure a supply of clothes and blankets free of charge to those who are in need, but work experience for those who seek employment in the mainstream. One of the first apps for an online thrift store was created for Sisters to help drive revenue to support the operations of NightShift.
The Family Hope Clinic
Dr. Jane Fee
Kwantlen Polytechnic University
Not-for-Profit Leader Category
Surrey Association for Community Living
La Belle Fleur Floral Boutique Ltd.
Mary Jane Wilson
Wilson Rasmussen LLP
Not-for-Profit Leader Category
DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society
Coast Capital Savings
Romancing the Home
Christine Trischuk Consultants
Guildford Town Centre
Peninsula Productions Society
Not-for-Profit Leader Category
Canadian Wheelchair Foundation
Canadian Tourism College
Vivienne Wilke, CGA, MBA
City of Surrey
Royal Canadian Theatre Company
Not-for-Profit Executive Category
Kathleen Kennedy Strath
Community Achievement Award
PDQ Post Group Inc.
Karen L. Baillie
Surrey Urban Mission
Community Achievement Award 2011
Malary’s Fashion Network
Simon Fraser University
Irly Distributors Ltd.