Meet The Speakers

Afshan Ahmad

Afshan Ahmad CPA Professional Corporation

Afshan is a goal-driven, highly organized, and results oriented accounting professional with over 15 years in the accounting service industry. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from University of Toronto and she is a CPA, CGA. Prior to founding Afshan Ahmad CPA Professional Corporation, she owned and operated Antares Accounting Services which assisted individuals and small businesses with their accounting and tax needs.

Register now:
How to Audit Proof Your Books – A guide to best practices in bookkeeping

Andrea Rowland

BACD

Andrea has over 20 years of international experience in marketing, branding and communications. Having worked her way around the world, she started a craft brewery in Australia giving her hands-on knowledge of running a business. She has er own branding and marketing business B-Zinga. Now working at BACD as a business advisor with a focus on marketing, she is very keen to share her knowledge with new business owners helping them create a better digital presence.

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Fundamental Building Blocks of Great Websites
And
Audit Your Website

Angela Kafadar & Scott Clevely

Video Power Up

Angela’s experience in sales and marketing has helped her success in her entrepreneurial goals.  A previous restauranteur, running a number of importing and distribution companies and growing a small idea into a successful trade show display dealer were some of her most notable achievements.

She now shares her experience as expert video content marketers to help small businesses create their own video marketing videos using the power of their smartphones.

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Creating Video for Your Target Audience

Antoinette Burrell

Kismet Digital

Antoinette Burrell has over 12 years of experience working with law firms, financial services,  software development and computer training companies. She is highly specialized in Corporate Training & Communications, with a focus on helping customers to understand technology in simple terms.

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You Do You: Social Media Marketing for Introverts

Bobby Kelly

WebMarketingPro.ca

Bobby is an analytics consultant that helps web development shops, marketing teams, and entrepreneurs grow their business through the strategic use of data. Over the course of 20 years in the business, Bobby has mastered the processes of digital maturity. He has a unique blend of skills that make him attractive to large and small businesses alike. As a consultant, Bobby’s skills have been utilized by TELUS, Koodo, Rogers, Yellow Pages, TD Bank, Highliner, The Minto Group, Prostate Cancer Canada, The Government of Yukon and Industry Canada and more. Bobby helps teams measure, understand and improve digital experiences and marketing efficiency.

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How to do Digital Marketing Better

Chris Innis

AWCCU

Chris Inniss began his career in financial services by chance, applying for a temporary position with a friend at TD. After working his way up from the TD call centre, he is now the CEO of AWCCU Financial, Durham’s largest locally owned credit union. In taking this position, Chris became the youngest credit union CEO in Canada. Although Chris began his financial career with a big bank, he was quick to learn that his personal ethics would take him in a different direction. In 2015 he began working with Copperfin Credit Union where he rapidly rose to the position of Vice President of Sales and Member Experience. This role fostered his passion for giving back to his community.

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Getting Funding and Financing

Daiana Villarreal

Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade

Daiana  is a trilingual international business professional with over 10 years of experience in trade development and trade policy promotion. She has provided trade consulting and advocacy services to companies in Latin American and Canadian markets in her former role as an international trade advisor for a Latin American export promotion agency. Daiana’s forte lies in promoting international trade policies and missions, developing and expanding business opportunities and new accounts, and building strong relationships with different stakeholders in the export ecosystem in Canada and abroad.

Register now:
Launch your Export Action Plan (LEAP) Workshop

Danielle Fernandes

Bantr. Inc

An entrepreneur, philanthropist, activist, speaker, and writer, Danielle has worked with endless clients from large-scale corporations to smaller scale non-profits. She is passionate about plant based lifestyles, animal rights, her basset hounds Seymour & Seely. Danielle is an avid reader and holds true to a minimum of a book a week ranging from business to classic English literature and any content by her hero, Malcolm Gladwell.

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Digital Marketing Today – Break Through the Clutter

Douglas Ellis

Sun Life Financial/Ironside Financial Solutions Inc

Doug is proud to have been in the Retirement Planning business since 1997.  He received his PFPC certificate in 2006; his Certificate in Financial Counselling in 2008; and his Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation in 2010.  During his long career in the financial industry, Doug has become a trusted advisor to many people in the Durham community.  In 2018, Doug launched Ironside Financial Solutions Inc. – a corporation dedicated to providing Tax-efficient solutions to local area business owners in the field of Group Benefits, Group Retirement Strategies and Executive Compensation Arrangements.

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Business Owner Solutions – Important Tips for Starting Out

Dustin Kellow

Durham Recruiting

Co-Founder of Durham Recruiting, Dustin has the unique benefit of meeting many local businesses big and small throughout the Region. He and his team are specialists in telling the stories of companies to attract the very best talent.
Dustin has 20 years experience in studying human attitude & behaviour. During which time he has conducted 100’s of market research studies hearing the many stories of people from all walks of life. Throughout his career he has worked with small local brands all the way up to some of the worlds largest brands in helping to develop their story and how to tell it.

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Attracting Top Talent For Your Business

Ella Bates

Ella Bates Efficiency Educator

Ella Bates at Ella Bates Efficiency Educator has over 19 years of learning and development experience collaborating with clients to assess, develop and execute powerful training that increases productivity. We do that through our dynamic corporate training workshops from our signature Productivity Bootcamp to the more unique programs teaching body language and designing speaker presentations. We have 1:1 Coaching and Group Coaching Packages PLUS our brand new Time Management Intensive Package.

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Productivity is the new “Busy”

Eva Chen

Chen Law Office

Eva received her Bachelor of Laws from Queen’s University in 2007, and was called to the Ontario Bar in 2008. Prior to law school, Eva explored a science career at the University of Toronto, where she received an Honours Bachelor of Science with high distinction before embarking on her Ph.D. studies under the tutelage of a world-class cancer researcher at the University of Toronto. Since her graduation from law school, Eva has practiced in many areas of business law: business agreement drafting and negotiation, commercial and residential tenancy, all aspects of employment law, complex commercial litigation, debt collection, residential to commercial real estate transactions, and wills and estate planning.

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Startup: Top 10 Legal Issues for New Businesses

Frank Auddino

Vitaliz Inc.

Frank spent over thirty years in Business Development producing top Sales with a career track record in delivering breakthrough revenue growth in Canadian, U.S. and international markets. Though he’s worked with high-profile corporations such as TC Transcontinental, Rupert Murdoch News Corporation, the Jim Pattison Group of Companies, and was a majority partner in a Rogers Media firm, it is the start-ups, SME’s and the businesses that are stagnant in growth and require funding that he revels in assisting at his currently role as President with Vitaliz Business Growth. He is an active angel investor, 2018 York Angel of the year,  and co chairs the membership and marketing committee with Angel Investors Ontario (AIO) and on the membership and marketing committees with the National Angel Capital Organization (NACO).

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Getting Funding and Financing

George Gill

GILL Solutions Management, LLC

George Gill is an entrepreneur, author, speaker and trainer focused on digital marketing strategies to drive sales growth and profitability for businesses and entrepreneurs of all sizes. George has founded 7 companies in his 30+ year career as an entrepreneur in both traditional and online businesses. Since 2009, George has coached and trained over 2000 companies in 65 countries how to apply digital marketing strategies to amplify growth and build their businesses to new heights.George is a long standing certified Google Analytics Professional, as well as an authorized Google Adwords and Infusionsoft Partner.

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How to Build a Successful Business Online in 30 Days

Jane Warr

Trainer Jane

Jane Warr, aka “Trainer Jane” is a Communications and Sales Trainer, Business Coach, Author and International Speaker based in Ajax, Ontario. She is a community leader, known for her innovative events, including: Selling on the Spot Marketplace; Networking, Sales Training, and a Selling Marketplace, Verbal Aikido, Why They Buy (B.A.N.K.); Personality Based Sales Training, and more. She has helped thousands of entrepreneurs, business owners and sales professionals excel in their fields, by improving their skills in communication, negotiation, and closing the sale. Contact Jane to increase your revenue authentically, ethically, and efficiently.

JD Thomas

Jade Strategic Relations

Jade Strategic Relations is a Durham based Public Relations firm focusing on communication and brand strategy.  As Jade’s Chief Communications Officer, JD Thomas provides business owners and individuals with guidance in building their business and public profile through strategic planning and effective communication.

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Putting Your Best Pitch Forward This Week!

Jeff Ross

Dimples

Jeff is a custom jeweller and has a business creating unique, custom creations with exquisite coloured gems and diamonds in precious metals.Jeffrey Ross is a microbiologist turned jewellery designer, goldsmith, inventor, and founder of Dimples brand of personalized jewelry. Jeffrey sought the services of the BACD when he first launched his entrepreneurial career with Jeffrey Ross Jewellery, a jewellery art gallery in Uxbridge, ON. Since then he has grown the brand of Dimples personalized jewellery into a successful e-commerce company that sells worldwide. He lives in Uxbridge with his wife and co-founder and their 3 children.

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Getting Funding and Financing

Jennifer Maxwell

The Art of Connection

With more than three decades in three different careers, emotional intelligence has been the key ingredient Jennifer’s success. With a focus on interpersonal communication skills, masterful connection, and a How-To approach, she trains business professionals to elevate their EQ, see the world from another’s perspective, quickly identify your clients’ Service Language, and turn teammates, spouses, children, and clients into raving fans.

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UNnetwork! No Card Shoving or Awkward Moments. Guaranteed.

Jenny McKee

Creating Inspiration

An entrepreneur, motivator and connector at heart, Jenny has been facilitating and developing Business Networking opportunities in Durham Region & Clarington since 2006. This past March of 2017, Jenny began her Mastermind Connections Event for Women in Business.  A mix of personal and business development workshops and business strategy and brainstorming sessions offer an opportunity for women to gather to support each other, share challenges, offer ideas and gain inspiration.

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Mastermind Connections – Building Resilience in Business (paid event)

Kasey Dunn

Community Innovation Lab

Kasey Dunn has a background in arts management, live performance, and creative incubation. She is a specialist in social change and has started ventures in both the public and private sectors. Kasey is inspired by the increasing numbers of women launching into entrepreneurship, especially with an eye towards social change, and is excited to bring her skill set as the program coordinator of The Refinery and Community Outreach.

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Redefining Innovation for Women in Business

Kelsie Van Roon

Kelsie Van Roon- Personal Development Coach

Personal Development Coach, Speaker & Entrepreneur, Kelsie Van Roon is dedicated to showing people that everyone  has the ability to live a truly extraordinary life filled with joy, love & success.  Kelsie is a Board Certified Coach and Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming.

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Mindset Success Strategies

Kevin Smith

The Story Architect

Kevin Smith is a Story Architect. As the Chief Story Architect for TheStoryArchitect.com, Kevin helps start-ups, small businesses, and social enterprises unleash their story to secure customers and investors, by helping them understand what their core customer story is and then helping them get their story to market. His services include branding, messaging, marketing strategy, SEO, Content and Social Media marketing, presentation and pitch design, web design, lead generation, sales coaching and business development. Before launching TheStoryArchitect.com, he rocked sales and marketing at Dell for 14 years, made thousands of presentations, ran for political office and managed a gadget addiction.

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Finding Your Target Audience.. Who is Your Best Customer?

Kristine Carr

The Collective

Kristine found her footing working with entrepreneurs when she co-founded and built a creative marketing and branding agency in 2015 that quickly grew to 15 employees and two locations in just a year and a half – which secured her a spot as an ambitious entrepreneur. Since then, she has developed and launched a micro-coworking office located in Downtown Bowmanville, THE COLLECTIVE, created to give business owners access to office space, coworking options, studio rental and amenities

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Discovering The Foundation of Your Brand

Laura Watts

Double Take Content Creation

Laura Watts is the C.E.O.of Double Take Content Creation, a content writing and strategy company located in the Durham region. There are some things that you inherently know, and she knew that writing was her passion, even from a young age. With technology, her love has morphed over the years, and she now finds herself in a position that blends her love of creating, writing and marketing. Before starting her business, she worked in Public Relations, as a News Writer at The Weather Network and is a graduate of the Journalism and Communications Media Advanced Program from Mohawk College. She has been published in Getting Organized Magazine, Durham Parent and other Metroland publications across Ontario and she has also been blogging for the last ten years.

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5 Reasons Why Every Business Owner Should Blog

Leslie Hughes

PUNCH!media

Leslie Hughes is a LinkedIn Specialist, a Professor of Social Media and the Principal of PUNCH!media. Leslie began working in digital media in 1996 and founded PUNCH!media in 2009 as one of the first Social Media Strategists. Leslie has worked with TVO , The Children’s Wish Foundation Guardian Life Insurance Company of America and Investment Planning Counsel of Canada.
Leslie is corporate trainer for the Social Media Marketing Certificate at UOIT. Leslie was featured on CTV’s “The Social”, is proud to have been called a “Social Media Guru” by CBC Radio and is the author of “CREATE. CONNECT. CONVERT.”

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PUNCH up your sales and marketing using LinkedIn & Social Selling

Liz Scott

Affinity Coach Consulting

North America’s Business Growth Guru
Liz has over 25 years’ experience as a senior Marketing and Sales executive and is a certified Business Coach/Consultant.  She is an international speaker, author, panelist, and strategist and she works with clients across North America teaching them the most effective Marketing and Sales techniques. Her clients hire her for her Business savvy, no BS approach and of course her signature trait of making Marketing fun!

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Rapid Results Marketing on a Shoestring Budget

Marcus Dickinson

How To Project

Have you ever been to a seminar and thought to yourself that it’s supposed to be fun and engaging while you learn? Yeah, we make that happen. Marcus is a dynamic speaker, trainer and consultant that delivers high energy while delivering high value. is no nonsense, yet earnest approach to the challenges that face business owners is refreshing in a sea of nuggets. Not sure what that means? Ask him when you see him.

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Limitless Results 

 

Marlene Marco

Heart of Networking

Marlene Marco has become known as the Queen of Networking in Durham Region for very good reasons.  Marlene is the founder and facilitator at Heart Of Networking and has been leading purpose driven business networking for thirteen years.
Marlene has always been self-employed mainly in Direct Sales, in the fashion business, first with Weekenders for twenty three years and currently with Nygard Style Direct. Marlene is an active APBOT member and a 2018 nominee for Business Person of the Year.  She has built lasting relationships in many other local business groups.

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Networking For Success

Marlon Shaw

Knowledge X Inc.

Marlon Shaw is a Certified Speaking Coach, member of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers, a Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM) and contributing author of the book “Thought Leaders, Visionaries and Influencers”. As the founder of Speak and Grow Your Business™, Marlon specializes in helping entrepreneurs and business professionals use speaking as a marketing strategy to standout as the Go-to-Expert and grow their business.

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Speak and Grow Your Influence™

Mary Morassutti

H.U.B Inc Durham

Mary is a start up junkie and a true entrepreneur at heart.  At the outset of her career, she worked as one of the first female Director’s of Photography in the Canadian broadcasting industry.  After getting married and having children, Mary left the television industry in order to re-invent her career. Her entrepreneurial spirit drove her to create STORYBOX PR, a boutique PR and Marketing agency. But Mary wanted to build upon all she’d learned and shift the paradigm even further. She envisioned a women’s organization more in sync with the needs of the female entrepreneurs and business leaders that she had worked so closely with and come to understand. The result was H.U.B Inc – “Heighten Your Business.” In only three years, H.U.B Inc has grown rapidly and now features chapters all across Ontario.

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The 5 Point Marketing & Branding Makeover

Mike Crofts

Money Coach Mike

Coach, Speaker & Cold Water Surfer, Mike is passionate about teaching others how to take control of their finances. Working through the process of getting on a plan, becoming debt free, and building long-term wealth, Mike’s message is simple. Be intentional, work a plan and live debt free! Mike is a certified financial coach and dynamic speaker on the topic of finance. Passionate about teaching strategies he used to beat debt and win with money, Mike Crofts equips and motivates his audience on how to win with money, both in their lives and in small business.

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Building Websites That Convert

Melissa Paterson

Gurus 4 You

Melissa is a creative entrepreneur and the founder of Gurus 4 You. Melissa is an eCommerce specialist with a focus on the Shopify platform. As a former Shopify employee, she has a distinct understanding and knowledge of the platform, the company and the merchants who succeed using the Canadian-based technology. She works primarily with handmade makers, people who build their products, artisans and small business owners

Register now:
An Intro to Shopify
and
What Every Business Needs to Know about Evolving With eCommerce on Shopify

Orzala Quddusi

Make it Happen Services

Orzala Quddusi is the CEO and founder of Make it Happen Services specializing in social media marketing services.

She began her journey earning a post-secondary diploma in Business Administration, followed by earning herself a Bachelors of Commerce degree. Orzala saw the need many entrepreneurs had for a wide range of services. With that in mind she developed Make it Happen Services. Additionally, Orzala is an active member of Ajax Pickering Board of Trade. 

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Mastering the Art of Instagram for your Business
and
Leverage Email Marketing

Pavel Malysheuski

Lockyer + Hein LLP

Pavel Malysheuski is a corporate/commercial lawyer at Lockyer + Hein LLP, a full service law firm. He provides counsel to clients in a wide variety of industries in all aspects of business law, focusing on business organization and reorganization, private share and asset acquisitions, corporate governance, securities and finance, commercial contracts, and franchise law. Pavel also assists clients with business succession and estates planning.

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Laws of Electronic Commerce, Distribution and Collection of Data

 

Peter Haggert

Haggert Media Group

Peter Haggert is the director of Haggert Media Group, an organization providing business-to-business marketing planning, content and execution primarily for the Microsoft community of partners, events and consultants. This follows a 30-year career as editor-in-chief of daily and community newspapers across Canada. He is president of the Scarborough Business Association. 

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Social Selling – Tomorrow Begins Today

Robert Harper

WSIB

Small Business Health and Safety Consultant with the WSIB.  I have been with the WSIB for the past 30 years.  For the past 15 years I have been working with Small Businesses to provide advice on developing and maintaining their health and safety programs.

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Small Business Health and Safety Information

Rob Ragusa

DIT Web Solutions Inc.

DIT Web Solutions, founded by Rob Ragusa and Louie Pateropoulos, offers more than 24 years of expertise in comprehensive website design and mobile app development as the result of the merger of Avenue Road Advertising and Digital Ink Technologies, two seasoned companies. The in-house team of creative minds designs solutions that create efficiency for clients in the ever-changing digital world. Projects are created in-house without the headache of language barriers generated by oversees developers, ensuring a thorough understanding of the client’s needs and company products. The result is successful product launches and customer experiences.

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Top 5 Internet Marketing Campaigns That Produce Results

Rochelle Ramathe

M&R Counselling Services

Rochelle Co-Founded M&R Counselling Services Inc. almost 10 years ago in Ajax with the goal of providing therapy to people going through difficult moments in life. At M&R Counselling Services all therapists have masters degrees and believe in providing excellent service. As a company we have been privileged to assist over 2000 clients in 2017 with either workplace stress, relationship issues, parenting issues or family mediation support. We look forward to serving more for 2018.

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Most Effective Tactics To Reduce Stress, That Millionaires Use

Rory Sheehan

The Art of Conversational Selling

Rory Sheehan has been a full-time Trainer, Consultant, and Coach since 1990. Through his training programs and speaking engagements, Rory is touching the lives of thousands of people every year. His entertaining and informative sessions have made Rory Sheehan an educator in high demand. Rory Sheehan is a Best Selling Author, and a five times winner of the Readers’ Choice Award as “Trainer of the Year”.

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WEBINAR – Conversational Selling for High Performers

Russ Montague

ShirtPunch and Nerd Block

With a $2,000 loan from his parents, to a 200,000 square-foot warehouse with over 150 employees, join Russ Montague as he walks you through his journey from start-up to exit, and everything in between, including all the good, bad, and ugly, that accompanies being an entrepreneur. With a focus on sales and growth, Russ will discuss the pressures, pitfalls, and hidden obstacles that entrepreneurs face every day, will share his list of “10 Commandments” that every entrepreneur should follow, and will discuss what entrepreneurs should be looking forward to after the subsequent exit of their company be it sale or wind-down.
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Ryan Day

Peninsula

For the last 34 years Peninsula have been supporting many businesses in your area to help advise, protect and grow their organizations. Our services go beyond employment and HR to cover health and safety management, insurance, employee wellbeing, and much more besides. Whatever we do, the service is always provided by a handpicked team of experts, so you can be sure you’re getting the best. 

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HR Law and Your Small Business

Ryan Ounjian

Futurpreneur Canada

Ryan Ounjian is a Business Development Manager at Futurpreneur Canada and supports entrepreneurs in designing their business model and launching their business. 

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Getting Funding and Financing

Sara Bibb

MKS HR Consulting

Sara Bibb is the Principal Consultant of MKS HR Consulting.  She is a professional and certified Human Resources Professional.
You will think she is part of your team because she takes pride in serving her Clients and getting the best solution to the HR issues they are experiencing in their business. She excels in her superior communication skills and relationship building skills with everyone she works with. She completed her post-graduate program in Human Resources Management at Seneca College and obtained her Certified Human Resources Leader (CHRL) designation in 2009.

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Human Resources and your Small Business

Shaelene McInnis

Books in Line Professional Services Inc.

Shaelene McInnis is the founder and CEO of Books In Line, an accounting company located in Durham Region. Books In Line started in the basement of her house and now, just 5 years later, has a number of offices and 12 employees with plans to expand to 15 before the end of the year. “I believe you can only grow your business by being a leader, finding great people to work with, treating employees and clients with respect, and by understanding how much money you have coming in and going out of your company. Knowing about your company’s finances is not something to be afraid of…it is empowering.”

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Small Business Taxes…Everything CRA doesn’t want you to know.

Shelly Patrick

ThinkFlame

Shelly Patrick is the CEO and Founder of ThinkFlame. Like many entrepreneurs, she went through a period of trial and error to find the right mix of online marketing to build her online authority and presence.  Shelly took that experience and turned her attention to helping small businesses increase their success and revenue through social media and helping small local businesses build and monitor their web presence.With over 10 years in marketing for fortune 500 companies, Deloitte and KPMG, she has now become the go-to authority for many of her business peers to help them work through their online confusion and create even more success!

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Lead Generation – The Lifeblood of Small Business

Teresa Shaver

BACD

Teresa joined BACD in August 2012 and has been working with the board of directors and key stakeholders to re-enthuse BACD with many new programs and services. Teresa worked in over 5 start up organizations across 3 countries and moved to Canada in August 1999 to be part of a small start up in Toronto that specialized in Call Centre Staffing.After working in this industry for 7 years, she went to work for the Whitby Chamber of Commerce and spent 5 years there. Teresa was also a business coach for the OSEB program working with new start up businesses for 3 years.

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Revenue is in the Relationships!

Tony Orsi

Bereskin & Parr LLP

Tony Orsi is a partner and patent agent with Bereskin & Parr LLP and member the firm’s Patent, Electrical & Computer Technology and Industrial Designs practice groups. Tony’s practice focuses on patents in the electrical, biomedical, software, mechanical and cleantech fields with an emphasis on evaluating new technologies, patent searching, patent drafting and IP management strategies. Tony works with startups and entrepreneurs to learn about IP, to develop their IP strategy and to build their IP portfolio.

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Protect Your Intellectual Property from the Start!

Uchechi Ezurike-Bosse

Uchechi Ezurike-Bosse is the founder of My Empowered Living, Bossurike  and author of From Aspiration to Fulfillment ~ Bridging the Gap from Where you Are to Where you Want to be, which is available at all major online booksellers. She is a speaker, entrepreneur, and wholesale expert, helping passion-driven entrepreneurs, increase their wealth, confidence and freedom. She’s been featured as a guest on Hay House Radio, and a contributor to The Huffington Post. She’s been dubbed the ‘Dream Whisperer’ by clients, and is passionate about educating and empowering others to cultivate the right conditions for success.

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Customer and Business Clarity Grows Your Revenues

William Botshka

Bill is the principal of Botshka & Associates Inc. a licensee of Leadership Management International (LMI) Canada specializing in Executive Coaching and Mentoring. He is a senior executive with a successful history in corporate governance, general management, and operations. He is a results-oriented professional specializing in the development of business through the development of people and he has led several organizations through major strategic change.

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Goal Setting and Time Management

Wynnie Chan

Bereskin & Parr LLP

Wynnie Chan is a lawyer and Canadian trademark agent with Bereskin & Parr.  Her practice focuses on trademark prosecution, opposition, licensing and related litigation, as well as copyright & digital media law. Before law, she held various marketing managerial positions at high tech startup companies in Silicon Valley.  Her marketing background is invaluable to her giving entrepreneurs and startups practical advice to build and protect their brands, and develop a global trademark strategy.

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Protect Your Intellectual Property from the Start!