WBE (Women Business Enterprises) Canada 2018 Annual Conference


Giving a voice to women-owned businesses

Don’t miss two exciting days of Speaker Presentations and Panels, Roundtable Discussions, Workshops and an Awards Luncheon – plus many Networking and Matchmaking Opportunities.

September 26 & 27, 2018
The Metro Toronto Convention Centre
South Bldg, Toronto, ON


DAY 1: Sept.26, 2018

8:30–10:30am Conference registration

9:00–10:30am Coffee Networking & Opening Remarks Reveal More

Discover the latest information from behind the scenes at WBE Canada, build new connections and network with like-minded individuals. Presenting Sponsor remarks from Laura Didyk and Pierre Dubreuil of BDC.

Continental breakfast will be available.

10:30–11:30am Breakout Sessions Reveal More

Learn from our Breakout Speakers their best tips, strategies and recommendations. Topics:

  1. Protecting & Commercializing Your IP with Ashlee Froese
  2. Congratulations! Your Company is Certified! What’s Next? How Will You Make Certification Work for You? With Patricia Muir
  3. Is Your Business an Innovation Incubator? Create Environments Where People WANT to Give Their BEST with Kris Prochaska

View All Here

11:30–12:00pm Break/Networking

12:00–1:20pm Keynote Speaker Luncheon Reveal More

Refuel your body, network with other attendees and get inspired by our keynote speaker, Jennifer Tory, RBC.

1:30–2:25pm Speaker Panels Reveal More

Choose from the following options:
Track 1: Suppliers Panel: Tools for Growth: Leveraging the Larger Supplier Diversity Community
Moderator: Amesika Baëta, EDC

  • Panelist 1: Marie-Eve Lefebvre
  • Panelist 2: Sylvie Ouellette, Versatil BPI
  • Panelist 3: Ivona Chyzewski, RBC Royal Bank
  • Panelist 4: Lynne Thomson, BWIT

Track 2: Corporate Panel: Making Supplier Diversity Work in Corporations
Moderator: Andrew Leich, Sun Life Financial

  • Panelist 1: Michelle Albanese, Manager, Responsible Sourcing and Supplier Diversity, TD Bank Group
  • Panelist 2: Matt Williams, Director, Procurement, Strategy, and Integration, BMO
  • Panelist 3: Dora Silva-Bolanos, Supplier Inclusion & Diversity Manager, Accenture

Track 3: Government/Non-Profit Panel: Advancing Supplier Diversity in Canada: Government LeadershipModerator: Debra Quade, Kellogg’s

  • Panelist 1: Michael Pacholok, Chief Purchasing Officer Purchasing and Materials Management, City of Toronto
  • Panelist 2: Sharon Connolly, VP, Finance & Consulting, BDC
  • Panelist 3: Barb Orser, University of Ottawa

Learn more here

2:25–2:40pm Break/Networking

2:40–4:45pm Meet the Buyer and Supplier Diversity Forum Reveal More

Zooming in on supplier diversity – join us at one of the following sessions:

Session 1: Meet the Buyer: Facilitated conversations between certified WBE’s, suppliers, sponsors and corporate buyers (invitation only)
This closed-door session is designed to create a space for certified suppliers to meet corporate and government buyers. Corporations & government will have opportunity to present their programs and find potential suppliers while suppliers will have opportunity to present their capabilities and build relationships with the buyers.

Session 2: Supplier Diversity Forum: Open conversation about the role & impact of supplier diversity  
If you are not a WBE Canada Corporate Member, Sponsor or Certified Supplier, you will be able to participate in the Supplier Diversity Forum to learn more about the status of supplier diversity in Canada, opportunities it offers to both sides. We’ll also share great resources to help you start on this exciting journey.

Forum Speakers:

  • Reggie Humphrey, GM
  • Sheri Spinks, Strategic Procurement Services
  • Silvia Pencak, WBE Canada

4:45–6:45pm Wine & Cheese Reception (Must RSVP to attend)

7:00–9:00pm Board of Directors Dinner & Meeting (invitation only)

DAY 2: Sept.27, 2018

8:00–9:15am Breakfast with Keynote SpeakerReveal More

Join us for this power breakfast session with our keynote speaker Mairead Lavery of EDC.

9:15–10:45am Workshops Reveal More

Session 1: Closed Door Certified WBE session (invitation only)
This session is designed to be an open conversation among women-owned businesses. Led by WBE Canada’s Supplier Advisory Council, this session will introduce new tools for WBEs, upcoming events and open up communication between WBEs across Canada. This is a not-to-be-missed event for all WBEs and their teams who are ready to BUILDING TO THE FUTURE!
Hosted by WBE Canada Supplier Advisory Committee with:

  • JULIE KAYE, TBD Telecom by Design
  • LISA SIRAGUSA, NRG TeleResources
  • MO-D, LA Metal Stamping

Session 2: Closed Door Corporate session (invitation only)
This session is designed for supplier diversity, corporate members & procurement professionals as well as other representatives of large corporate & government organizations. Join us as we discuss supplier diversity strategies, tools and best practices in internal communication. This peer-to-peer session will help you increase awareness around supplier diversity across your organization.


Session 3: Open session
This open session is for those not attending session 1 or 2. Gain valuable insights on what personal branding is and why it’s important to accomplish your goals. Whether it’s fundraising, recruiting or building a business, also learn specific strategies on how to be a positive influence in Social Media that will enhance your personal and professional life.

  • SUSAN FRIESEN, WBE Marketing & Communications Manager

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10:45–11:00am Break/Networking

11:00–11:45am Breakout Sessions Reveal More

Learn from our Breakout Speakers their best tips, strategies and recommendations.
Topics include:

  1. Rethink. Redefine. Repower. Disruptive Sales Strategies for a Changing Era in Winning Corporate Clients with Phil Dyer
  2. Own Your Time: Practical Strategies to Take Control of Busy Days with Ann Gomez
  3. Learn to Focus on Purpose, Processes and People to Drive Profits with Athena Taddei

View All Here

11:45–12:00pm Break/Networking

12:00–2:00pm Awards Luncheon with Keynote Speaker Reveal More

Refuel your body, network with other attendees and get inspired by our keynote speaker, Lesley Marks of BMO. Be the first one to discover WBE Canada 2018 Awards recipients and congratulate them on their success.

Nominate a deserving individual or company here!