Happiness Researcher, Speaker, Educator, & Author
Dr. Gillian Mandich is an award-winning, internationally recognized happiness researcher, speaker, educator, and author. With a PhD from Western University in Health Science, Dr. Gillian’s primary areas of research are happiness and health. She is the founder of The International Happiness Institute of Health Science Research; Research Associate at The World Database of Happiness, based out of Erasmus University Rotterdam in the Netherlands; co-lead investigator of The Canadian Happiness At Work Study; and was recently named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women.
As a prominent media personality, Dr. Gillian has appeared on The Social, Marilyn Denis, Breakfast Television, The Morning Show, Global, ABC News Philadelphia, WWL New Orleans, and CBS Pittsburgh. She is a top-rated keynote speaker and has given two TEDx talks.
Skilled Tradeswoman & Builder
Kate Campbell entered the skilled trades in 2005. After graduating high school and realizing that the university path just wasn’t for her, Kate applied to a "Women In Skilled Trades" (WIST) course based out of Burlington, Ontario. After being accepted to the course and picking up a power tool for the first time, Kate realized she had found her passion. During the three-month program, she was introduced to carpentry, electrical, plumbing, finish carpentry, and several other trades. Kate had always known that she wanted a career where she could stay active, be creative, and constantly be challenged. Well, she found one!
Kate has been working in the television and renovation industry for over fifteen years and has been taught by some of Canada's top renovators. She can be seen as part of the crew for HGTV’s Holmes On Homes, Holmes in New Orleans, Holmes Inspection and assisting the final contestants as a part of Handyman Superstar Challenge.
While working on these shows, she was faced with many challenges and was also exposed to every aspect of home renovation and building. Kate was personally involved in building several homes and helped with countless renovations. She’s worked with some of the best designers, builders, and most cutting-edge building materials out there.
Kate Campbell has also been featured as one of the crew in HGTV’s hit shows Decked Out, Disaster Decks, and Deck Wars, where she helps build some of the most interesting and unique decks featured on TV.
Kate is also one of the hosts of HGTV’s Custom Built, which combines her skills from her early renovating days and her creative, fun attitude from building on Decked Out.
To top it all off, most recently Kate was asked to participate in HGTV Canada’s hit show Home to Win and Family Home Overhaul as one of the hosts and celebrity contractors.
When she’s not filming, Kate also runs her own company - Kate’s Contracting Inc. She specializes in real estate investment and rehabbing run-down properties, concentrating mainly on century homes with lots of character. Kate just finished a complete gut and renovation of a 170-year-old Stone Farmhouse while documenting the process for YouTube and her social media channels. She also represents several companies such as Dewalt, Trex, Ontario OneCall, and American Standard.
Kate is extremely passionate about speaking to young women who are considering entering the trades. She is focused on “changing the face” of the skilled trades and ESPECIALLY passiis onate about being an advocate for women and supporting causes that are important to her. Kate’s mission is to use her story and experience to help as many women as possible feel empowered to get into the trades or feel confident in the world of real estate investment.
Senior Aerospace Engineer at MDA
Natalie is an intelligent, insightful, energetic speaker who infuses powerful storytelling with a down-to-earth personality. She brings an unrivaled passion for ideas that inspires audiences to embrace the learning process: demand the most of themselves, commit to a goal, and develop intellectual fortitude. Natalie is on a mission to inspire the next generation of female game-changers to dive head-on into challenges and pursue careers in engineering and technology.
She shares a powerful narrative infused with valuable takeaways. Natalie has had some extraordinary experiences that have shaped her dreams of becoming an astronaut, including her grit and perseverance at applying and being rejected not once, not twice but 4 times by NASA... before she earned her internship at NASA’s Goddard Spaceflight Center and Ames Research Center, where she worked on a mission to Mars.
She’s currently working on a Mars space rover; the Rosalind Franklin, previously known as the ExoMars rover, in advance of its launch in 2022.
At age 20, she was the first female driver of the University of Calgary’s inaugural solar-powered vehicle which raced up from Texas to Calgary. With degrees in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Natalie has also co-authored papers on Microgravity Combustion and On-orbit Satellite Servicing. Her love of space and aviation led her to obtain a private pilot’s license to fly a single-engine aircraft. The Financial Post described Natalie as “a vocal advocate for women in technology”.
She’s also worked on partnerships with Barbie for the launch of astronaut Barbie and a documentary about her experiences, Space to Explore, premiered at the Banff Film Festival.
Throughout her challenging projects, she understands that learning & growth happens every day: from failure, from colleagues, or from new experiences.
She is a technology contributor for The Next Women Business Magazine. She was featured on the editorial site Women You Should Know as a STEM Rock Star who is revolutionizing how we think about women in tech. Natalie is also a mentor and program adviser for Cybermentor, through the University of Calgary.
Founder of Ethelfox Construct Group
Natasha Ferguson is the founder of Ethelfox Construct Group, a full-service construction and development company located in Toronto that provides distinctive build and design services for residential homeowners. As one of the only female-owned and operated construction companies in Canada, Natasha’s company helps to break down barriers for women and people of colour in the construction industry. Natasha is also the co-founder of a non-profit organization called A Women’s Work, which supports the development of women in the trades.
Jax makes pop music without harming any balloons. She has no problem wearing Crocs or playing Settlers of Catan for hours (in Crocs). She once trained (Rocky-style) to complete a marathon. She even blitzed the DJ booth at some bougie Hollywood nightclub to sing next to Paris Hilton after writing her a song (umm, who wouldn’t?). She went viral like a dozen or more times by singing pop songs from the perspectives of their subjects, attracting 1.3 million followers on Tik Tok, 125 million views and 17 million “likes” (she has no idea what 1 million people look like together though). She is from New York and New Jersey, but lives in L.A. (you could find her at bars in the Valley pre-Pandemic—not so much now).
Despite not actually fathering any children (to her knowledge), she knows more dad jokes than any dad out there.
She is just the nerd we need right now.
“I’m a total dork in real life,” she affirms. “Sometimes I’m feeling myself and I’ll put out something sexy, but it’s not really who I am. I wanted that to shine through in the music. In my songs, I write things I’d actually say in conversation and see if anybody wants to be my friend.”
You’ll definitely want to be her friend…
Out of the womb, mom played “tons of rock ‘n’ roll” for Jax. So, she took to Janis Joplin, Joan Jett, Alanis Morissette, The Beatles, Frank Sinatra, Paramore, blink-182, and Billy Joel. “Obviously because I grew up on Long Island,” she reminds. At seven-years-old, she did adult community theater as a proud “psycho theater kid.” She taught herself piano and went through “a big emo goth” phase. When her high school band gained traction, her parents allowed her to homeschool. Her Brooklyn firefighter dad had bravely rushed towards danger as a 9/11 first responder on a recovery mission and retired in the aftermath. So, he took the reins as her first manager, tour driver, roadie, etc. “I couldn’t have done anything without him,” smiles Jax.
However, it wasn’t easy. At 18-years-old, she developed cancer above her vocal chords. She went into remission, but it returned a couple of months later after she relocated to L.A.
“It was a major wakeup call,” she states. “It made me realize you only live once. I’m thankful I caught it early. I couldn’t sing at the time, and I still needed to do something creative, so I started writing songs.”
In remission once more, she succeeded behind-the-scenes writing songs for other artists. When COVID-19 shutdown songwriting sessions, Jax needed to pivot again. This time, she turned to Tik Tok. She posted a hilarious response to the pop gem “Stacy’s Mom” from “Stacy’s Mom’s Perspective.” It exploded with nearly 9 million views in a few months’ time. She maintained this momentum with other riotous Tik Toks, including “Avril Lavigne & Sk8er Boi (18 years later)” [14 million views] (people under 16 still think Jax is the real Avril Lavigne!). She dedicated “Somebody’s Kid” to her marine brother and served up other fan favorite independent singles, including “i can’t believe i shaved my legs for this,” “papercuts,” and “Bitchcraft.”
However, “Ring Pop” changed everything. Initially teased on Tik Tok, the snippet instantly captivated fans. On the official release, her warm delivery coasts over dreamy guitar and snappy percussion as she croons to her BF, “Don’t need no diamonds, you’re my rock, and I’m okay with a ring pop.”
“I was, and currently am, broke in L.A. living in a one-bedroom apartment, but very much in love,” she goes on. “My boyfriend and I weren’t having a great week, so I wrote the song for him to feel better about not being able to just buy a diamond engagement ring and get married. Who cares? We’re living our best times now.”
Ultimately, that spirit carries over to the music.
“I want you to know it’s cool to be weird,” she leaves off. “If you’re not feeling cool enough, I’m on the same plane. We’re all in this together, and I can be your dad,” she laughs.
Co-Founder & Project Manager at Family Fuse
As a singer/songwriter and community collaborator, Christie has worked independently with Canadian producers as well as Grammy and Juno award winning artists. More recently, building and creating connections through passion projects has given Christie more inspiration to help get people on the dance floor. Music like her collaboration with Alonso Mendez, “Rise Up” and her song “Building A Dream”, co-written by her child Aletha, produced by Alonso Mendez, with a hip hop spin by Cody Brown, are intended to bring people together. With motivation across generations including trailblazers like Build A Dream Founder Nour Hachem-Fawaz, Christie aims to empower through music with and for those dedicated to creating positive changes for themselves and others.
Global Executive Officer at TD
Claudette McGowan is a global information technology leader with more than 20 years of success leading digital transformations, optimizing infrastructure and designing new approaches that improve service and cybersecurity experiences. She has worked in the technology industry for several organizations such as Deloitte, Metropolitan Police Services, North York General Hospital, Bank of Montreal and TD Bank.
Claudette completed her studies in Canada and holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Business Administration along with certificates in Artificial Intelligence, IT Management, Project Management and Smart Buildings.
Over the past few years, Toronto Life recognized Claudette as one of the city's Top 50 Most Influential Torontonians, Digital Finance Institute honoured her as one of the Top 50 Canadian Women in FinTech, IT World Canada named her as Top 20 Canadian Women in Cybersecurity, and the Women’s Executive Network recognized her as one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada.
In 2022, Claudette received the DMZ Women of the Year Award and NACO named her as a Nation Builder of the Year in Canada.
Claudette is an active member of the Canadian innovation ecosystem. She is the chair of the Coalition of Innovation Leaders Against Racism (CILAR), a group of senior business leaders committed to fighting systemic racism within the innovation economy. McGowan recently co-led the launch of Phoenix Fire & The Firehood, a multi-million dollar women-focused angel fund and network for women in technology.
Her commitment to community is evidenced by her multiple board seats for leading organizations such as MaRS Discovery District, SickKids Hospital Foundation, Black North, CILAR, Elevate and First Book Canada.
President & Founder of Build a Dream
Nour utilizes her 15 years of experience as a workforce advisor, mentor, and influencer to inspire youth to make informed career choices that challenge the status quo.
Nour Hachem-Fawaz wants to change global perspectives on women’s contribution to society. Inspired by her mother’s perseverance to excel in a male-dominated field, Nour dug deep into the ‘why’ behind the lack of women in skilled trades. She realized that the barriers keeping women out of these rewarding careers were common to other male-dominated paths and created a non-profit to encourage and empower young women to explore careers they may never have considered.
Nour’s challenge to listeners is that one must first address internal preconceptions before being capable of making significant strides that transform our work and world. A brilliant connector and facilitator, audiences are drawn to her candour and unique perspective from an extensive career in workforce development and her lived experiences as a woman of colour. She shares energetic stories of what leaders are doing right and offers real-world examples of how embracing diverse workplaces accelerates success.
Nour earned her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Windsor and expanded Build a Dream across Canada while completing her MBA, raising children, and earning many awards and accolades. She spends each day following her passion: creating equity not just in the workplace, but in all of the spaces around us.
AVP Technology, Solution Train Engineer at TD
Nkechi Nwafor-Robinson is an award-winning Technology Executive, with over 20 years of experience. She is an AVP in Technology Solutions, currently serving in the role of Solution Train Engineer at TD Bank Group, supporting Data-as-a Service Enterprise Product Family and responsible for overall orchestration of large solution level events – but that is not all. She is the Founder and CEO of Empowered in My Skin Inc., author, professional bodybuilder, host of Empowered in My Skin podcast, and an inspirational speaker, with speeches that have been viewed over 7M times worldwide. Most recently she was awarded the 2020 WXN Most Powerful Woman Canada – Top 100.
Canadian Anishinaabe Activist, Broadcaster, & Filmmaker
A storyteller at heart, Sarain combines various mediums to amplify the voices of her people in hopes of creating meaningful dialogue between Indigenous and settler communities. Sarain has built her career in the cross-section of activism and media. Her mother and great aunt are the oral record keepers of the family. They have passed down ancient teachings from generations of knowledge-keepers and have raised her to be proud of her Indigenous roots. As a result, Sarain has become a powerful and vibrant voice for the Indigenous community.
In 2020 she founded Land Back Studios a production company focused on authentic storytelling in new media, television, and film. She is most noted for her 2020 documentary film Inendi, for which she received a Canadian Screen Award nomination for Best Host or Interviewer in a News or Information Program, and currently runs on CBC GEM.
You’ve seen Sarain in the larger-than-life billboards & videos for Sephora’s ‘We Belong to Something Beautiful’ initiative, or as the host for APTN’s Future History & Viceland’s RISE. As an Indigenous Entrepreneur, AMEX Canada partnered with Sarain for the launch of their Blueprint campaign to support BIPOC Businesses. As a brand ambassador, Sarain uses her platform to celebrate the immense knowledge and talent of Indigenous people, designers, and brands. She has lent her voice to international brands such as Sephora, Canada Goose, Nike N7, and Manitobah Mukluks. Sarain sees each partnership and campaign as an opportunity to highlight her culture in the mainstream, share the stage with up-and-coming Indigenous talent and change the world for her people.
Sarain is also an ambassador for TreadRight Foundation (a non-profit focused on sustainable travel and cultural preservation) and sits on the board of directors of the Center for Biological Diversity.
The Feminist Plumber, Founder/Chief Visionary Officer of Tools & Tiaras Inc., Tradeswoman Activist, & Speaker
Judaline Cassidy, who hails from the beautiful twin islands of Trinidad and Tobago, is a hero in a hard hat, one of CNN's 2020 'Champions For Change’, and the founder and activist behind the trademarked phrase, "Jobs Don’t Have Genders". As a history-making plumber in NYC (Plumbers Local Union No. 1), Judaline has broken countless barriers in fighting for equity for women in the male-dominated construction trades for the last 25 years. As the founder of the pioneering nonprofit Tools & Tiaras, Inc. (est. 2017), Judaline is inspiring the next generation of tradeswomen through hands-on, mentoring workshops and summer camps for girls (ages 6-14). The organization's mission is to advance girls’ interest in pursuing non-traditional careers in S.T.E.A.M. professions, which include all aspects of the construction industry. To do that, T&T puts tools directly into girls’ hands, helping them realize - and believe - just how capable they are. A powerhouse role model, captivating speaker, and the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions, Judaline has been featured by the Associated Press, CNN, BBC America, Good Day LA, No Barriers Podcast, and countless other media outlets. Her ability to inspire crosses generations and genders, and the impact she makes extends to her industry and beyond
Founder & Chief Equity Officer of Women in Governance
Caroline is the Founder & Chief Equity Officer of Women in Governance, Canada’s preeminent nonprofit created in 2010 with a mission to help women access decision-making bodies and male-dominated fields through advocacy, major events, mentoring, and governance training programs.
In 2017 Women in Governance (WiG) developed the first North American Parity Certification™ with the pro bono support of McKinsey & Company, Accenture, Mercer, and WTW, to close the gender gap in the workplace in corporate Canada. WiG’s Parity Certification™ was also successfully launched in the US in 2020 through a historic partnership with the Girl Scouts of the USA and will be launched in Europe in 2023. Today, more than 700,00 employees work for a Parity Certified organization.
A Citizen of the world, fluent in four languages, and having lived on three continents, Caroline was born in Beirut and grew up in the civil war. A highly sought-after speaker, Caroline has addressed audiences across the globe, including two TEDx (120k+ views).
She has also done more than 100 fireside chats with preeminent CEOs, Chairs of Boards, and global public figures, including Hillary Clinton, Justin Trudeau, Chrystia Freeland, Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan, Lord Mayor of the City of London, Tarana Burke, Randy Zuckerberg, Winnie Byanyima, Uzo Aduba to name just a few.
Widely quoted in national and international media, she is the recipient of numerous awards from prestigious organizations including the United Nations’ Women’s Committee, the Quebec Business Women Network, The Federation of Chambers of Commerce, and the New Delhi Women’s Economic Forum.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau nominated Caroline on Canada’s National Gender Equality Committee and Mayor Valérie Plante on the City of Montreal’s Business Committee. She was also recognized as a Top 20 Diversity Leading Figure in Quebec, Top 75 Canadian Immigrant, Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada, and Top 100 Entrepreneurs changing the world. Caroline is a Forbes Business Council member.
Founder & CEO of Lilia
Alyssa is the founder and CEO of Lilia, the most enjoyable egg-freezing experience in the world. Lilia is on a mission to bring reproductive freedom to every woman by making egg freezing affordable, accessible, and convenient. Alyssa raised Lilia's first round of funding in 5 weeks with no product, deck, or website, and went on to gain backing from Y Combinator, Silicon Valley's most prominent investor.
Program Director at Startup Dojo
Anjalee Narenthiren is the 19-year-old speaker, Program Director at Startup Dojo, and host of the Youngpreneur with Anjalee Naren podcast. Anjalee is an international VEX Robotics champion, having beat over 20,000 teams in two consecutive years. She also founded her first startup at age 15. Currently, she is enrolled in the Jerome Fischer M&T Program at The University of Pennsylvania – pursuing a double degree with the Wharton School Of Business and Penn School of Engineering.
Environmental Field Technician
Constanza (@technically.a.tech on Instagram, YouTube, and Tiktok) is an environmental field technician and has built a following on social media sharing her day-to-day life at work, as well as reviewing women's workwear. Constanza is passionate about getting women into workwear that actually fits, and she speaks candidly on the experience of women in STEM and construction, creating a community for women to feel heard and understood. Constanza is your job site bestie, she will also make sure you're staying hydrated and UV protected during those long days on site!
Third Term Interior Systems Mechanic Apprentice at United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America
Delaney realized halfway through high school that she wanted to build things for a living. She wanted to stand back at the end of her day and see something she had built with her two hands. Delaney also knew that she wanted to make a difference, and inspire people to create change. That said, being a woman in the skilled trades gives her the opportunity to do both.
Delaney attended a Build A Dream Career Discovery Expo in high school and connected with The Carpenters Union Local 494. Upon graduation, she signed up as an apprentice through Local 494 and she has been working/training ever since. Delaney's job consists of a variety of different tasks from building a layout, to steel, to stud framing, to drywall boarding, and to installing ceiling systems. Since starting in the skilled trades, she has been involved with Build a Dream. From speaking at various events to running workshops with high school students, her goal is to inspire other people from marginalized communities to consider a career in the skilled trades. Choosing the apprenticeship pathway was the most rewarding decision she has ever made.
Founder & CEO of Atunda Inc.
Desiree Norwegian is a member of Liidlii Kue First Nation, she is part of the Dene clan, meaning the land of the people from North West Territories. Desiree graduated from Algoma University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with a specialization in Accounting. With Desiree’s strong determination and drive she next went on to obtain a Chartered Professional Accountant designation.
Desiree has worked in senior-level accounting positions for the Municipality of Wawa and in the Energy Sector for Brookfield Renewable Power and Plasco Energy Group. Working in these roles had given Desiree the skills to take on her next big adventure, the purchase of Abraflex 2004 Ltd in early January 2016, which she owned until August 2020.
Since then, Desiree has decided to pursue her passion through Atunda Inc. and strive for Indigenous engagement, rights, equality and reconciliation, gender diversity, and teach/talk about the huge advantage that clean energy plays in our society and great careers in stem & skilled trades.
Electrical Engineering Student at the University of Windsor
Dora Strelkova is an Electrical Engineering undergrad with a minor in Mathematics, currently pursuing a minor in Computer Science at the University of Windsor. To date, Dora works as an Additive Manufacturing Lab Technician at Valiant TMS and engages in research on robotic grippers. Her research focuses on integrating compliant mechanisms and origami in robotics via 3D printing (3DP). As a FIRST Robotics Alum, Dora aims to destigmatize STEM for young girls and women who look to be involved in the world of science and tech but don’t know where to start. Her involvement in the Windsor branch of IEEE’s Circuits and Systems Society (CAS) has allowed her to give back to the student community through the delivery of technical events on PCB design and fabrication, 3D modeling, and the design for additive manufacturing. Dora is thankful for all her mentors who have provided guidance and opportunities throughout the years, allowing her to expand her toolbox of skills and become a stronger future engineer.
Vice President & Country Leader of GE Hitachi SMR Canada
Lisa is the Country Leader of GE Hitachi’s SMR Canada business. In her role, Lisa provides the vision & strategy to lead the deployment and implementation of the BWRX-300 Small Modular Reactor in Canada. She leads the collaboration with customers, the Canadian government, industry, and partners and provides leadership and oversight of the GEH SMR Canada business operations.
Lisa has over 19 years of experience in the nuclear industry, starting her career with Ontario Power Generation. Her drive and commitment have propelled her into several key leadership roles in nuclear and corporate functions. Lisa’s diverse experiences have positioned her to engage in several critical initiatives, where her expertise across the business has resulted in her leadership of several multi-disciplinary teams. Lisa holds a Master of Arts in Leadership from the University of Guelph.
Lisa McBride is also the President of Women in Nuclear (WiN) Canada. In this role, Lisa provides vision, strategic direction, and oversight of the day-to-day operations of WiN Canada, an organization comprised of over 4,000 members across Canada. Lisa holds a seat as a Director on the Canadian Nuclear Association Board, the Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries Board, the WiN Global Board, and the Lakefront Utilities board. Lisa is also the Chair of the Women for STEM Council at Ontario Tech University.
Second-Year Carpentry Apprentice
Jelissa is a carpentry apprentice, welder, entrepreneur, and advocate for women in the trades.
Outside of work and trades advocacy, she runs a business designing and building a variety of custom wood pieces and displays for local event planners, decorators, and makers.
She serves as a regional representative for the BC Centre for Women in the Trades and is a board member for the non-profit's Build a Dream and The BC Tradeswomen Society.
She loves to provide mentorship and guidance to women who are just starting their career in the trades or who are considering, yet hesitant, to pursue one.
She also seeks to change the negative stigma of a trades career and make pursuing a career in this industry more appealing and accessible to those who are underrepresented.
President of LMS General Contractors
Jennifer Todd is President of LMS General Contractors. Based in South Florida, LMS is a woman-owned, demolition and environmental services contractor completing work across California and the Southeast. Todd is the founder of 501c3 nonprofit, A Greener of Tomorrow, which promotes the skilled trade advancement of minorities and women.
Todd is a 2020 Engineering News-Record Top 25 Newsmaker, Construction Business Owner Magazine Outstanding Women in Construction finalist & November 2020 cover feature, and 2021 Engineering News-Record Top 20 Under 40 Professional.
Jennifer Todd is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Industry Leaders Council and the National Association of Black Women in Construction (NABWIC).
Todd graduated from Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law graduate and acquired her PM Certificate from Emory University.
Special Projects Manager at Ledcor Construction
Lora McMillan is a queer woman working in Ledcor Construction’s Toronto branch. She started her career as a carpenter and worked her way up to a Project Director and working to establish the Special Projects division at Ledcor Toronto. Lora is a founding member of Ledcor's Inclusion and Diversity Advisory Council, and a staunch advocate for inclusion within the construction industry.
Founder & CEO of AccessNow
Maayan Ziv is an activist, photographer, and entrepreneur. In 2015, she launched AccessNow, a mobile app and website that collects and shares information about the accessibility status of places worldwide.
What began as a response to her frustration when trying to navigate inaccessible places, AccessNow soon grew to become a mission-oriented social start-up. Within just a couple of years, AccessNow has vocalized a movement for inclusion, inviting people of all abilities to contribute to the platform.
As CEO of AccessNow, Maayan has created a powerful shift in thinking about the importance of accessibility in our world, from accessible technologies to infrastructure, public policy, media and communications. To date, AccessNow has shared accessibility information in over 35 countries.
An influential public speaker who is often in the media, Maayan collaborates with private sector companies as well as government and not-for-profit organizations. She is leading a movement, challenging norms and empowering others to make the future accessible and inclusive for all.
Maayan and her work with AccessNow have received numerous awards including MIT Technology Review’s Innovators Under 35 (2022), Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 (2021), the Governor General’s Innovation Award (2020), WXN Top 100 Canada’s Most Powerful Women (2018), City of Toronto Access Award (2016), David C. Onley Leadership in Accessibility Award (2016).
Owner, Operator, & Designer of Timber + Plumb Inc.
Markie Tuckett is the proud owner of Timber + Plumb Kitchens and Cabinetry in Windsor, ON. A creative and optimistic Metis-Canadian, who strives to make impactful connections with her clients and community.
Markie has always had a love for anything design related. From a young age, her passion for design developed into more than just a hobby, and later recognized her true career passion was working with interiors. This drove her to focusing on a post-secondary education in Interior Design.
Following her post-secondary education, Markie successfully opened her own business, Timber + Plumb. Among her career achievements, Markie was recently nominated for Entrepreneur of the Year at the 2022 Windsor Business Excellence Awards, named one of the KBB’s Magazine “Praise-worthy Picks” for Person of the Year, National Kitchen and Bath Association’s (NKBA) Top Thirty Under 30 as well as the DesignHounds Kitchen Design Influencer of the Year.
Now, as the owner, operator & head designer at Timber + Plumb, Markie recognizes that there is more to running a business than just the books. It means supporting your community. It means being a cheerleader for other women-owned businesses, and supporting girls and young women to follow their career goals. Everyone is deserving of a seat at the table, and Markie will continue to use her platform to be a voice for change!
Creator of Kokom Scrunchies
Mya Beaudry is a talented 11-year-old Algonquin from Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation. Since starting Kokom Scrunchies in the fall of 2019, Mya has always ensured that all Kokom Scrunchies are handmade with love in Canada.
Mya named each of the original Kokom Scrunchies after Indigenous role models in her life. She also hopes to inspire others in her journey. What started off as an idea has taken Mya on the path of bringing Kokom Scrunchies to everyone, young and old.
CTO & Co-Founder of Ripple Studios, Head of A220 Fleet Performance at Airbus Canada
Sabrina Gomez Vila is the CTO and co-founder of Ripple Studios. Sabrina is passionate about the advancement of women in technical fields and is committed to inspiring the next generation of problem-solvers and game-changers.
Sabrina completed a Bachelor of Aerospace Engineering from Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University) in 2016, specializing in Management Sciences for Engineers. At university, she held the role of Team Manager of Ryerson Formula Racing (RFR), an engineering design team that builds race cars. RFR is where Sabrina and her co-founder Mallory first met.
After completing her degree, Sabrina started working at Bombardier Aerospace as an Engineering Analyst in the Maintenance Engineering Department. In this position, she worked on various projects overseeing the reliability and maintenance costs of the Q400 and CRJ aircraft fleets. She worked with engineering teams from different aviation companies and airlines to solve worldwide fleet issues.
Sabrina completed her Master of Aerospace Engineering at the University of Toronto in June 2020. After completing her master's, Sabrina joined Mallory to create Ripple Studios. With Ripple, Sabrina has participated as a Design Judge for Formula Bharat in India and Vex Robotics. Sabrina has also participated as a Mentor for students with organizations like Engineers of Tomorrow Future City Experience, FemSTEAM, Girls and STEM by Science World, and Zebra Robotics, among others.
Sabrina currently works at Airbus Canada as Section Chief of the A220 Fleet Performance Team. She leads a team with a mission to optimize the technical and economic performance of the A220 aircraft fleet (formerly known as the CSeries) in the areas of aircraft availability, operational reliability, and maintenance cost.
Technical Manager, Manufacturing Engineering at General Motors
Stephanie Thompson is a passionate engineer and community leader who actively pursues new and innovative ways of promoting science, technology, and learning in the Niagara area.
With an extensive 21-year professional career at General Motors, Stephanie leads engineering teams to launch world-class production lines for engine and transmissions, managing capital investment projects for high-performance manufacturing. With more than 15 years invested in FIRST Robotics, she draws energy from supporting grassroots programs in STEM, particularly for women in her community.
In 2018, Stephanie launched her social enterprise, STEM by Steph. These innovative projects break down barriers by making STEM subjects accessible to all women. Since its inception, Stephanie has run 15 STEM workshops for hundreds of women both virtually and in person.
In 2020 and again in 2021, Stephanie was recognized by the Women’s Executive Network as one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women. She was the winner of the GNCC Business Award for Science and Technology and received from her alma mater, the University of Waterloo, the 2020 Alumni Achievement Medal for Community Service. In 2021, the Women of Inspiration recognized Stephanie with a Finalist Award.
Stephanie holds a Bachelor of Applied Science in Chemical Engineering, a Certificate of Professional Management from Brock University, and a Professional Engineer in Ontario. In 2021, Stephanie joined Brock University’s Board of Trustees as well as Niagara College’s Industrial Automation Program Advisory Committee.
She and her husband are raising their daughter to love STEM by exploring the unique ecosystems of Niagara.
Director of Public Relations, Marketing & Strategic Partnerships for the Labourers International Union of North America Ontario Provincial District Council & the Region of Central & Eastern Canada
Representing the interests of over 140 000 members across various sectors in Canada including construction and the skilled trades, healthcare and industrial work, Victoria’s creative vision translates into progressive action with measurable results to achieve social impact and industry advancement with the respect of unionized labour, ensuring it be at the forefront of all communication. Her responsibilities linked to media relations, content creation, branding, and marketing strategies, public and community outreach and government advocacy have developed a dynamic and diverse spread of campaigns and social outreach all of which center around the promotion of invaluable opportunities in sectors represented by LiUNA. Through the establishment of strategic partnerships, her role is extended to outreach including a significant focus on empowering opportunities for youth and underrepresented communities.
As an Advisor to LiUNA’s Indigenous Relations Department and a tireless advocate as the Chair of LiUNA OPDC Women in the Trades Department, Victoria remains committed to empowering opportunity, dismantling structural barriers, and challenging the assumptions and implicit biases that have traditionally prevented women from entering the workforce. Through outreach and education, her work aims to empower a path to economic independence, strengthen unionized labour across Canada, and promote the skilled trades as a first choice career option, while advocating for accessible tools and resources for a diverse workforce at the centre of building and strengthening communities across the country. Victoria has served on the Exhibition Board of Governors and was recently appointed to the Ontario Task Force on Women and the Economy. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto and specialized in the field of Public Relations and Marketing at Humber College.
Founder & Director of The Math Guru
Vanessa is the founder and director of The Math Guru, a super cool boutique math & science tutoring studio in Toronto. She is also the author of Math Hacks, a new book that totally makes math fun, stress-free and relatable for young kids and parents, and the host of Math Therapy, a podcast that works through guests’ math trauma. She has her Bachelor of Commerce, Teaching Degree, and Masters of Math Education. She appears regularly on national television and news outlets as an expert in math education and speaks globally at conferences about re-inventing media representations of women in STEM. Her #goals are to be Lady-Gaga-famous and to totally change math culture so that STEM is finally as cool and accessible as basically every single Taylor Swift song ever. She failed Grade 11 math twice, which was the best thing that ever happened to her. Sidenote, but totally relevant: Vanessa is a founding member of Toronto indie-rock band Goodnight, Sunrise. Mindy Kaling is her idol and Vanessa believes that she should be yours too.