‘Name Her, Nominate Her’ Campaign Has Officially Launched

 The ‘Name Her, Nominate Her’ Campaign has officially launched as the 27th Annual RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards Call for Nominations Officially Open. If you know a Canadian female entrepreneur that deserves some recognition — find out how to nominate her below.



RBC and Women of Influence are announcing the call for nominations for the 2019 RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards. This year’s Name Her, Nominate Her campaign marks the 27th year of the awards which provide national recognition to Canada’s most accomplished and impactful women entrepreneurs, whose successful businesses and influence contribute significantly to the local, national and global economy.

Canada is home to over 1.4 million women entrepreneurs and 47% of small and medium-sized businesses are now owned by women, generating over $117 billion per annum of economic activity in Canada. Moreover, 63% are likely to turn a profit with adequate funding in just two years.

Since its inception, over 32,000 women have been nominated for the RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards and over 170 Awards have been presented for outstanding entrepreneurial achievement. We are calling on all corporations, organizations, and individuals to champion this cause and help us recognize and give a voice to the outstanding work of female entrepreneurs across the entire country and in all industries.

“We have some incredibly talented women across the country who are trailblazing, inspiring and leading future generations to drive innovation, economic growth and social progress,” says Greg Grice, Executive Vice President, Business Financial Services, RBC. “It is important that we recognize and celebrate the significant impact that their passion, dedication and contributions have had in the business community. RBC is proud to work with Women of Influence again this year to launch the 2019 RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards to recognize the next generation of exceptional women in business.”

Each of these prestigious awards is tailored to recognize women from all sectors of the economy and at all stages of business growth. They include: the Ones to Watch Award, Micro-Business Award, Staples Start-Up Award, RBC Momentum Award, Social Change Award, TELUS Trailblazer Award, and Excellence in Entrepreneurship Award.

“Successful entrepreneurship requires more than a great idea – it demands tenacity and tireless dedication,” says Alicia Skalin, Co-CEO, Head of Events and Programming, Women of Influence. “Through the RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards, we recognize a diverse group of Canadian business leaders who have successfully navigated the challenges of entrepreneurship to become powerful innovators in their industries.”

If you know a Canadian female entrepreneur who needs to be recognized nominate her now.

Advice from the TPH Charitable Giving Award Finalists: RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards

The TPH Charitable Giving Award celebrates an exceptional leader of a not-for-profit or charitable organization that is dedicated to helping others help themselves. These leaders assist in social change and improving the quality of lives around us, not to mention garnering extraordinary support from the community by championing philanthropy and volunteerism in Canada. We asked their best advice for other entrepreneurs.

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Advice from the Telus Trailblazer Award Finalists: RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards

The Telus Trailblazer Award honours an entrepreneur that is a true trendsetter. She has recognized a new market, product, service, technological advancement, or opportunity and has bravely led the way. She has demonstrated outstanding leadership within her company and market, and has set standards for originality, quality and successful management. Theses entrepreneurs are mentors, visionaries, leaders, and successful businesswomen of their industry. We asked them what advice they would you give to another entrepreneur facing uncertainty about their own trailblazing idea.

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Advice from the RBC Momentum Award Finalists: RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards

These successful entrepreneurs have successfully overcome obstacles, capitalized on opportunities to deliver 10% growth or more, and have done so for more than three years. Through their expanded management, empowered employees, and demonstrated excellence, these entrepreneurs have created a flexible and responsive business that is able to adapt to changing market environments and leverage opportunities for continued growth.

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Advice from the Profit Award Finalists: RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards

Through timely innovation, strategic thinking, and smart execution, these three finalists have launched—and built one (or more!) successful companies with a track record of growth, profitability, industry leadership, as well as breaking new ground. Through their drive, managerial acumen, and leadership traits, they have have generated exceptional economic growth and social change. We asked their best advice for other entrepreneurs.

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Advice from the Micro-Business Award Finalists: RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards

The Micro-Business Award proves that small businesses can still have great impact and contribute to innovation in Canada. This award category honours small businesses generating annual revenues under $1 million (with a steady growth rate) in any industry and at any stage of business.


We’ve asked their best advice for other entrepreneurs:



Andrea Heilemann, Owner, International Business Services Ltd.

Coming from a background in finance and economics, Andrea credits her company’s success to the goals she set in the beginning: credit rating, liquidity, and internal financing. Focusing on the distribution of high-end industrial tools in Canada and the US, the company has proudly earned the trust of three major innovative manufacturers in Germany—allowing them to be a leader in the North American marketplace.

Q: What did you learn in your first year of business? 

A: To pay close attention to customer’s needs, to not lose faith in the plan and goals when the going is slow at first, and to not undervalue and undersell to achieve higher would-be revenues.






Sharon Vinderine, CEO, Parent Tested Parent Approved

Parent Tested Parent Approved (PTPA) isn’t Sharon’s first entrepreneurial venture. As an inventor of a baby product, Sharon realized the importance of having a credible product that has been reviewed (and approved) by other parents and peers, thus creating a trustworthy rating system. With no credibility at the outset, PTPA is now one of the top three most recognized seals of approval in the US, and has an impressive community of over 70,000 families and over 42,000 authentic product reviews. Sharon was even approached by Disney (who acquired her biggest competitor) to purchase remaining assets after Sharon drastically impacted their market share after three years.

Q: What is the one piece of advice you would give to aspiring entrepreneurs? 

A: Never stop innovating. If you get too comfortable with the status quo, you provide your competition the opportunity to catch up to you or even exceed you. 




Connie Parsons, Director, School of Dance Ltd.

At 21 years old, Connie purchased her previous dance instructor’s company and began Connie Parsons School of Dance. The company began with 85 students, and in only three years, she tripled enrolment and moved into a bigger space. On top of that, Connie opened a second company, The Dance Spectrum Inc., purchased a second dance studio, and diversified class offerings and genres. Not only are the students and parents happy—the company’s financials are in check, too.

Q: What did you learn in your first year of business? 

A: You need to be willing to put in an enormous amount of personal time and effort. In the beginning, I was the owner, the teacher, the manager, the director, the bookkeeper, and the advertiser. I had to learn to delegate, seek good people, and build a strong team. Success takes patience, perseverance, and a real passion for what you do!







The collective impact of our country’s female entrepreneurs cannot be overstated. The RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards is the premier national awards program celebrating the achievements of the most successful in this inspiring group. Now in its 23rd year, over 120 women have been recognized for demonstrating excellence—from economic growth to social change, from local to global reach, across multiple sectors. We’re honoured to shine a spotlight on them.



Advice from the Deloitte Start-Up Finalists: RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards

The Deloitte Start-Up Award celebrates the achievements of a woman who, in three to five years, has developed her business into one that’s ready for the next level of growth. Since starting out, these three finalists have been successful in building a profitable business with a comprehensive and sustainable plan.

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N.S. Women Up For Awards

The Chronicle Herald | 11/01/2013

Three Halifax-area businesswomen are finalists for the annual RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards.

Jacqueline Farrow, president of Jacqueline Farrow Law Office Inc. in St. Margarets Bay, is nominated for the Profit Award for excellence in entrepreneurship.

Jenny Kierstead, founder and president of Breathing Space Yoga Studio, is a finalist for the Telus Trailblazer Award.

Tamara Barker Watson, CEO of Whitestone Developments Ltd., is nominated for the TPH Sustainability Award.

More than 3,000 nominations were received for this year’s award program. Winners will be announced Nov. 27 in Toronto. > See full article