Ahead of the Curve: Building One of Canada’s Top Agencies
Mia Pearson, Co-Founder, North Strategic
Many people have a ‘big idea’ for a business yet most are unsure how to get it off the ground - or furthermore, turn it into a success. Who better to turn to for expert insight than last year’s Deloitte Start-Up winner of the RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards, Mia Pearson, who took home the win with the fascinating story of how she grew her latest venture from a novel idea to one of the most competitive communications agencies in Toronto.
A force within the Canadian marketing scene, Mia is known as an innovator, corporate strategist and social pioneer. Always ahead of the curve, in 1996 Mia created the first technology boutique PR agency in Canada and grew it to 120+ people across the country and San Francisco before selling it to Fleishman-Hillard in 2008.
Her next mission was to set the standard in how agencies integrated social media with traditional PR - the result is North Strategic, a disruptive company that quickly established itself as an industry leader and has earned Mia and her team countless accolades including 2013 Top Marketers in Canada, 2014 Small Business of the Year, and Strategy Magazine’s 2014 Agency of the Year.
Join us on September 15th for this unique opportunity to tap into Mia’s award-winning insights and infectious enthusiasm for entrepreneurism. Get inspired to take the next step in your professional journey!
Tamara Taggart co-anchors the weeknight CTV NEWS AT SIX, delivering the most important stories of the day to viewers across the region. Selected as Broadcaster of the Year by the B.C. Association of Broadcasters in 2014, on October 27th, the multi award-winning television personality will turn the spotlight on herself and share the personal side of her professional journey to the anchor chair.
As a veteran broadcaster and third generation Vancouverite, Tamara has a deep understanding of what matters most to Metro Vancouver residents. But as a busy working mother, Cancer survivor and Chair of the BC Women’s Hospital “Hope Starts Here” campaign, she also has critical insights to share on how to expertly balance countless demands while maintaining a high profile public career.
Join us to get up close and personal with one of Vancouver’s most beloved personalities and be inspired by a true story of strength and resilience.
As a child, Amanda Lindhout escaped a violent household by paging through issues of National Geographic and imagining herself in its exotic locales. At the age of nineteen, she began to travel the globe. Aspiring to understand the world and live a significant life, she backpacked through Latin America, Laos, Afghanistan and in war-torn Iraq she carved out a fledgling career as a television reporter.
And then, in August 2008, she travelled to Somalia - "the most dangerous place on earth." On her fourth day, she was abducted by a group of masked men along a dusty road. Held hostage for 460 days, Amanda converted to Islam as a survival tactic, received "wife lessons" from one of her captors, and risked a daring escape.
Amazingly, Lindhout emerged after 15 months as a hostage with a vision of how she could create sustainable change in the world’s poorest country, the place where she had lost her freedom. Quickly gaining a name for herself as a humanitarian, Amanda now works tirelessly on women’s rights issues and empowers women in Somalia through educational and micro finance programs she founded.
On October 29th, Amanda will join us to share the harrowing story of her capture and survival and widen the lens to impart the stories of several extraordinary women — women who represent the future leaders of their countries — to bring us to the heart of a new global wave of women’s empowerment and social entrepreneurship.
A Career Rebound: Lessons from the President of a Global Fashion Brand
Carrie Kirkman, President of Jones Group Canada
For over 25 years Carrie Kirkman climbed the ranks of the fashion industry in various sales, merchandising and management positions at iconic fashion houses including Alfred Sung, Liz Claiborne, DKNY and Kenneth Cole. Her passion and strong vision for rebuilding brands continually propelled her forward until she was ultimately recognized with the prestige position of President of Jones Group Canada in 2010.
During her tenure, Carrie grew the business line to exceptional heights, including record-breaking sales performance and a high-energy team who thrived under her leadership. By all accounts, Jones Group Canada was destined for unprecedented future growth.
In January 2015, that vision changed when it was announced that the Jones Group would be dismantled and the Canadian division would be closed. Overnight, Carrie’s career trajectory shifted beyond her control and now like many others in the current economy, she now sits at the pinnacle of change.
Join us on November 10th for a one-on-one account from this former President on what she learned during her tenure and how she plans to rebound to the next phase of her executive career.
This elegant, by invitation-only, dinner is designed to recognize and elevate women at the CEO, Board and Senior Executive level and provide the opportunity to share invaluable insights, best practices, and survival tools amongst their peers.
The goal of the evening is to tap into the solutions for women’s professional advancement in order to impact the global community at large.
Taking the Top: How to Become the Leader of a Successful Corporate Brand
Senior Vice President, Marketing, Shoppers Drug Mart
Topic: Personal Branding
Over 25 years in the marketing and advertising industry, Shelagh Stoneham has held a series of increasingly impressive senior titles at top firms, including executive managing director at BBDO and senior vice president at Rogers Communications.
In 2014, she became the senior vice president of marketing for national chain Shoppers Drug Mart, guiding a brand that has 98% consumer awareness and 1.2 million customers daily. Her success was no accident: Shelagh didn’t just write down her goals, she made strategies to achieve them. She’s made smart career moves to continually build on her experience, and evolved with the industry as its needs and demands have shifted. As for career failures: those are learning moments that she won’t be repeating.
Join us on November 12 for an insightful Q&A led by a local media personality. Shelagh will not only be sharing the details of her strategies for success, but also how they can be applied to your own career and personal brand.
Elizabeth Witmer, Chair, Workplace Safety & Insurance Board
Currently holding the position of Chair of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board and with 35 years of public service, Elizabeth Witmer has been an influential figure in Ontario politics. During this time Elizabeth has been responsible for making decisions that have positively impacted the citizens of Ontario.
Formerly the Deputy Premier and longest serving female MPP in Ontario’s history, Elizabeth has also made her mark as a respected Minister of Labour, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, Minister of the Environment and Minister of Education. Her exceptional leadership and progressive action have been recognized with countless awards and accolades along the way. Join us on December 9th to get one-on-one with this influential leader and find out how she has been able to overcome the barriers to success and stay the course in a demanding public career while also leave a defining impact.
How to Break the Rules & Win: Lessons from the Advertising Industry’s Most Infamous Trailblazers
Best-Selling Authors and Co-Founders of Swim
Topic: Career Management
Janet Kestin & Nancy Vonk [the two masterminds behind the DOVE Campaign for Real Beauty and former co-chief creative officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto] will join us to unveil the behind-the-scenes story of how they unwittingly shattered the glass ceiling by challenging convention in the cut-throat advertising industry, and as a result became two of the most prolific forces in the field.
Backed by a collective wealth of experience that includes major industry accolades [Canada’s Marketing Hall of Legends; 100 Most Influential Women in Advertising, etc.] and best-selling books ["Pick Me", a staple in ad schools from Texas to Turkey; "Darling You Can’t Do Both", a recent 2014 release], Janet and Nancy will inspire you to learn from their instinct to challenge the status quo and apply the same tactics to fuel your own career.
Their honesty, humour and no holds-barred insights into overcoming common challenges women face while navigating the workforce will have you laughing, crying, and most importantly, ready to take on a new professional year with a fresh perspective.