Keynote

DATE: November 10, 2021

TIME: 3:00 - 3:45 pm ET | 12:00 - 12:45 pm PT

Importance of Supplier Diversity from a First Nations Ojibwe Female Entrepreneur, and Canadian Indigenous-Women-Owned Staffing & Resource Firm

With Jennifer Ménard-Shand, Founder & CEO, Staff Shop Inc.
Introduction by Monica James, Regional Manager, Client Diversity, BDC

Sponsored by: BDC

Join us to hear about the importance and impact of Supplier Diversity from First Nations Ojibwe Female Entrepreneur Jennifer Menard-Shand, Founder & CEO of Staff Shop, a Canadian Indigenous-Women-Owned Staffing & Resource Firm. Introducing this session is Monica James, Regional Manager, Client Diversity at BDC, leading BDC’s National Strategy to support Indigenous entrepreneurs. As a proud Cree woman, raised in Northern Manitoba, Monica knows first hand the unique challenges faced by Canada’s Indigenous entrepreneurs. Jennifer Menard-Shand, WBE Canada’s 2020 Rising Star Award recipient is this year’s Conference Keynote Speaker, bringing us her journey, telling you of her dreams and challenges as she shares her truly captivating and inspiring story.

Jennifer Ménard-Shand

Jennifer Ménard-Shand

As an Indigenous-French-Canadian female and entrepreneur, Jennifer dreamed of leading a purpose driven organization, from anywhere in the world - that employs top talent hungry to serve, grow and leave a legacy worth following. Staff Shop now provides the platform to keep that dream alive as an award-winning diverse supplier.

After growing up in Northern Ontario with a heart for Hospitality, Jennifer made her mark in Staffing by joining The Bagg Group (now TalentWorld) in 2008, and excelling with one of Toronto's most trusted full-service agencies since 1971. In 2013, she created Bagg @ Your Service - The Bagg Group's first Hospitality & Event division. In late 2018, Jennifer purchased her creation, and Staff Shop Inc. was born. The COVID-19 pandemic encouraged Staff Shop Inc. to evolve into a full service staffing firm made up of 8 service lines, now supporting all ten Canadian provinces, with a few clients in the USA and the Caribbean.

Jennifer’s story is one that celebrates the triumph of Good over Evil. The odds were stacked against her as a survivor of suppression challenges faced by women, especially Indigenous women including; alcoholism, abuse, neglect, trauma, abandonment and imposter syndrome. She is now focused on breaking the silence, ending generational curses and stopping unhealthy cycles. Driven by Faith-Passion-Freedom at her core, there is no limit to the positive impact Staff Shop and Jennifer Menard-Shand can have on humanity. And that is what brings her joy and energy daily to do what she does best, and inspire others to reach their full potential.

Monica James

Monica James

Since 2003, Monica James has focused her commercial banking career on helping Indigenous entrepreneurs realize their dreams and being a voice of reconciliation. During this time, she has held a variety of progressive positions in Indigenous Banking, including Senior Manager and Business Centre Manager. In her current role as Regional Manager, Client Diversity, she leads BDC’s National strategy to support Indigenous entrepreneurs in accessing capital and advisory services to scale and optimize their business. She is also the Indigenous Lead for BDC’s internal strategy to honor the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Call to Action #92. As a proud Cree woman, raised in Northern Manitoba, Monica’s efforts are informed by her own lived experience.

After completing a Bachelor of Commerce from the Asper School of Business, she started her career with BDC. One of her first milestones was being a founding member of the Aboriginal Chamber of Commerce - the first in Canada. She values giving back to the community and serves on the Board of Mother Earth Recycling, an Indigenous social enterprise focused on creating meaningful jobs and opportunities for at-risk individuals.