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Economic Impact Value-Added GDP


The collective impact of not-for-profit arts organizations receiving funds from Calgary Arts Development provided an estimated $134M in value-added GDP impacts to Canada from annual operating expenditures, with $107 million annually of GDP impact to Alberta alone predominantly in the Calgary region. This is sustained, ongoing, year over year impact. The sector also generated an estimated 1,550 full-time jobs, including close to 1,000 direct full-time equivalents.

Economic Impacts of Arts Operations in Calgary (2016/17, millions of $, full-time equivelants (FTEs), rounded)


$140M $120M



35M 27M








12M 16M



Rest of Canada



996 212 82 129



Rest of Canada


Government Revenues from Calgary Arts Development funded Not-for-profit Arts Sector 1

(Direct & Indirect Impacts Only)


(2016/17, millions of $, rounded)

Municipal Revenue ($3M) Provincial Revenue ($6M) Federal Revenue ($7.7M)





$40M $20M





EconomiceImpacts of Arts uneveR laicnivorP Operations in Terms of lapicinuM Government Revenues


$80M $60M





Direct Indirect Induced


Attracting & Retaining Businesses & Knowledge Workers


% of businesses

agree that a thriving arts cultural scene is something that makes it/would make it easier to attract top talent to their community.2

Cultural Tourism

Significant taxes/revenues go to government from ongoing operational expenditures, with direct and indirect impacts on government revenue estimated at $16.6 million, with $3 million generated for municipal government.


of skilled workers

agree that a thriving arts and cultural scene is something they look for when considering moving to a new community.2

Skilled workers are



more likely

to look at the local arts and culture scene before considering moving to a new community.3

Tourism Calgary’s destination strategy framework includes a recommendation to attract, develop, promote and activate events year-round.5

Recreation and entertainment accounted for

$120,925,470 in visitor spending in Calgary in 2014.4

Recent research indicates that Calgary’s overall urban culture is not perceived as a competitive strength for the destination. This is an indicator that Calgary’s overall vibrancy and energy could be increased with the successful implementation of the destination strategy.6

1 Calgary Arts Development. “Economic impact assessment of the annual operations of Calgary arts organizations.” 2018. 2 Business for the Arts. “Comparison of skilled workers and businesses.” 2016. 3 Business for the Arts. “Skilled workers’ impressions of the arts.” 2016. 4 Tourism Calgary. “Visitor spending by sector.” 2014, https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7eh45N-VCodYUJBZ2c5QXNtNDg/view. 5 Tourism Calgary. “Calgary: Ultimate hosts, ultimate host city. Destination strategy.” 2018, https://files.acrobat.com/a/preview/059d9cc2-7804-4ae6-95fc-0507a78d3210. 6 Tourism Calgary. “Brand evolution project: results and recommendations.” 2017.

Social Impact The arts have the power to build a greater sense of belonging. From healthier and more meaningful lives; safer, more resilient and more inclusive communities; flourishing culture and identity; and greater community participation a strong sense of belonging has an extraordinary capacity to transform our lives and our communities.1


% of Canadians

agree or strongly agree that arts and heritage experiences help them feel

part of their local community.1



of Calgarians

agree or strongly agree that arts bring people together and

enable people to connect.2

Canadians who rate arts, culture and leisure in their city or town as “excellent” are x


more likely to report

a “very strong” sense of belonging, compared to those who rate arts as “poor.”1

The Arts and Inclusion & Belonging The Institute for Canadian Citizenship offers a Cultural Access Pass to all new Canadians during their first year of citizenship. A 2016 survey found that the majority of pass users felt “welcomed, special and included in Canada.” One in four said the Cultural Access Pass inspired them to get more involved in their community.1

This is a strong indication that increased diversity and inclusion in Calgary’s arts sector is fundamental to contributing to feelings of belonging for all Calgarians.

The 2018 Culture Track study discovered that Indigenous peoples and people of colour are nearly 2X more likely to say they did not participate in cultural activities in the past year because the activities didn’t “reflect people of all backgrounds.” 3 Fig. 1

The Arts Contribute to a

Creative Community Organizations supported by Calgary Arts Development create community. For example, Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra musicians have extremely varied networks that include 99 other institutions, professional arts organizations, community groups, non-arts organizations, and 293 music students. This means that municipal investment in the CPO extends well beyond the organization, creating ripple effects throughout the arts ecosystem and beyond (fig.1). The red nodes represent CPO musicians. The teal nodes represent organizations that receive municipal investment through Calgary Arts Development. The network in grey shows how the City’s investment has impact and reach beyond those organizations receiving funding. If the CPO were to shut down tomorrow, only 30% of this community network would remain, with the majority being lost as CPO members leave Calgary to pursue musical opportunities in other cities (fig.2). The grey nodes highlight the connections that would be lost and the teal network showcases the connections and communities that would remain.

Community Foundations of Canada. “Vital Signs Arts & Belonging.” http://communityfoundations.ca/artsandbelonging/. Calgary Arts Development. “Calgarian Engagement Survey.” 2016, https://calgaryartsdevelopment.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Calgarian-Engagement-Survey-2016.pdf. 3 Business for the Arts. “Culture Track Canada.” 2018, http://www.businessforthearts.org/culturetrack/assets/reports/CT%20Canada%20Report.pdf. 1 2

Fig. 2

Youth Impact Across all ages, research is showing a positive relationship between arts integration and student achievement–both academic and social.


Elementary School

Junior/Senior High

Music education creates positive effects on:

Students in arts-integrated programs scored as being5:

Creativity1 Spatial-temporal abilities2 IQ scores3 Reading & language4

More creative More engaged More effective at problem solving

Students participating in year-long arts programs show increases in6:

Intellectual Engagement Ethical Mindset Entrepreneurial Spirit

The Arts &

Cognitive Development Music education has been linked to “verbal memory, second language pronunciation accuracy, reading ability, and executive functions” in students.7 Music training and sports programs have both shown cognitive development benefits, though instrumental music training appeared to be unique in terms of long-term effects.8

The Arts &

At-Risk Youth In a series of longitudinal studies students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds with deep arts engagement were found to have improved academic and civic behaviors including higher school grades, higher test scores on standardized tests, higher rates of honours society membership, higher rates of volunteering, and higher engagement in school or local politics.9

1 Duncan, D.J. “The relationship between creativity and the Kindermusik experience.” Unpublished Master of Science thesis, 2007. 2 Gromko, J.E., and A.S. Poorman. “The effect of music training on preschoolers’ spatial-temporal task performance.” Journal of Research in Music Education, vol. 46, no. 2, 1998, pp. 173-181. 3 Kaviana, H., et al. “Can music lessons increase the performance of preschool children in IQ tests?” Cognitive Processing, vol. 15, no. 1, 2014, pp. 77-84. 4 Myant, M., et al. “Can music make a difference? A small scale longitudinal study into the effects of music instruction in nursery on later reading ability.” Educational and Child Psychology, vol. 25, no. 3, 2008, pp. 83. 5 O’Neal, C. “Selected findings from the John F. Kennedy Center’s arts in education research study: An impact evaluation of arts-integrated instruction through the Changing Education Through the Arts (CETA) program.” The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, 2014, http://artsedge.kennedycenter.org/~/media/ArtsEdge/LessonPrintables/articles/arts-integration/KC-AE-Selected_Findings_CETA_v18.pdf. 6 Martin, B.M. and A. Calvert. “Socially empowered learning in the Classroom: Effects of arts integration and social enterprise in schools.” The Journal of Teaching and Learning, vol. 11, no. 2, 2018, pp. 27-42. 7 Green, C. and D. Bavelier. “Exercising your brain: a review of human brain plasticity and training-induced learning.” Psychology of Aging, vol. 23, 2008, doi: 10.1037/a0014345. 8 Young, L.N., et al. “Arts involvement predicts academic achievement only when the child has a musical instrument.” Educational Psychology, 2013, doi: 10.1080/01443410.2013.785477. 9 Catterall, J.S., et al. “The arts and achievement in at-risk youth: Findings from four longitudinal studies.” National Endowment for the Arts, 2012, www.arts.gov/sites/default/files/Arts-At-Risk-Youth.pdf.

86% 92%

of Calgarians engage with the arts in some way, either through arts attendance, arts creation or through media1

Calgarians value Living a Creative Life Calgary Arts Development is our city’s designated arts development authority. Under the guidance of a volunteer board of directors and a staff of seasoned arts professionals, we currently receive $6.4M from The City of Calgary each year to support the work of hundreds of arts organizations, individual artists, and arts groups. In 2017 these organizations provided over 25,000 arts events, which were attended by more than 3.3 million people. In the City’s upcoming 4-year budget, we are seeking a transformational increase to The City’s investment in Calgary’s arts sector from $6.4M to $19.5M. This increase will foster a more sustainable and resilient arts sector, strengthen the economic, social and youth impacts of the arts for our city, and meaningfully contribute to Calgary’s identity as a vital, prosperous, connected city.

calgaryartsdevelopment.com 1

2016 Calgarian Engagement Survey; 2. Ditto; 3. Ditto; 4. Citizen Satisfaction Survey

believe the arts bring people together and enable people to connect to each other2


of Calgarians believe that support for arts and culture including festivals is somewhat or very important4


believe that a strong arts and culture scene is key to creating a vibrant, safe and prosperous city3

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We couldn’t have written a better story Instead of sticking with the status quo, alumnus Jeremy Klaszus scripted his own path to success. We’re proud of Jeremy, one of our 100,000 alumni, and all of this year’s Avenue Calgary’s Top 40 Under 40 members who are part of the Mount Royal story. Take a bow. You belong here.


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Avenue’s 20th annual list of Calgarians under the age of 40 whose generosity, ingenuity and hard work is lifting up the city and making it a better place for everyone. By Hadeel Abdel-Nabi, Shelley Arnusch, Jessica Barrett, Matthew Coyte, Marzena Czarnecka, Christina Frangou, Christina Freudenthaler, Andrew Guilbert, Jennifer Hamilton, Fabian Mayer, Vanessa Nim, Tina Shaygan and Alana Willerton





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Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2018 | Winter Hiking | Indian Food Guide

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contents NOVEMBER 2018

47 p.

48 Carrie Bruno 49 Sean Carleton 50 Col Cseke 51 Katie Davies 52 Jerilyn Dressler 53 Kirsten Fiest 54 Kirsten Fleming 56 Christina Hassan & Hyder Hassan 58 Jason Kingsley 60 Jeremy Klaszus 62 Kye Kocher 63 Christy Lane 64 Derek Luk 66 Jil Macdonald 68 Renée MacKillop 69 Amy Metcalfe 70 Rebecca Morley 72 Devin Morrison 74 Corinne Ofstie 75 Claire O’Gorman 76 Kerry Lynn Okita 78 Peter Oliver 80 Allison Onyett 82 Ellen Parker 84 Ryan Roberts 86 W.H. Andrew Ryu 87 Tolulope Sajobi 88 Prism Schneider 90 Vivek Shraya 92 Jake Stika 94 Amanda Rae Storteboom 96 Su Ying Strang 98 Adam Thompson 99 Matt Toohey 100 Doug van Spronsen 102 Zain Velji 104 Rita Watterson & Kimberly Williams 106 Tara Weber 108 Scott Westby 110 Megan Zimmerman


Indian Cuisine in Calgary Take a journey through the South Asian restaurant scene and find out where to go, what to eat and who the people are behind some of the city’s best Indian dining spots. By Karen Anderson and Erin Tettensor

Clothing information in Source on page 133.

126 Fashion

Menswear that can take you wherever life leads.




contents NOVEMBER 2018



Mountains Just because winter is upon us doesn’t mean you can’t go hiking. A look at some of the coolest trails for a cold-weather hike and the best gear to keep you warm, dry and safe out there.


Detours Otahpiaaki, a fashion week for Indigenous designers, returns this month, weaving messages of reconciliation into the clothing pieces on display. Plus, a poignant look at the First World War through the eyes of a soldier-poet with local roots and three hip-hop acts to watch. 30


140 Decor

A unique, two-storey condo in Mount Royal with not one, but two wood-burning fireplaces is a cozy oasis for owner and mid-centurydesign aficionado Sharon Schuld.


Get the Look Lovely light fixtures inspired by this month’s curated home.



avenue RedPoint Media & Marketing Solutions 100, 1900 11 St. S.E. Calgary, Alberta T2G 3G2 Phone: 403-240-9055 Toll Free: 1-877-963-9333 x0 Fax: 403-240-9059 info@redpointmedia.ca AvenueCalgary.com Facebook: Avenue Magazine — Calgary Twitter: @AvenueMagazine Instagram: @AvenueMagazine

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Publisher Joyce Byrne, jbyrne@redpointmedia.ca Editor-in-Chief Käthe Lemon, klemon@redpointmedia.ca Executive Editor Jennifer Hamilton, jhamilton@redpointmedia.ca Senior Art Director Venessa Brewer, vbrewer@redpointmedia.ca Executive Editor, Digital Content Jaelyn Molyneux, jmolyneux@redpointmedia.ca Senior Editor Shelley Arnusch Associate Art Director Sarah McMenemy Assistant Editors, Digital Content Alyssa Quirico, Alana Willerton Editorial Assistant Colin Gallant Staff Photographer Jared Sych Production Designer Rebecca Middlebrook Contributing Editor Andrew Guilbert Editorial Intern Hannah Kost Fact Checkers Jennifer Friesen, Alex Rettie Contributors Hadeel Abdel-Nabi, Chris Amat, Karen Anderson, Lori Andrews, Jessica Barrett, Matthew Coyte, Marzena Czarnecka, Christina Frangou, Christina Freudenthaler, Anne Gafiuk, Tamsyn Gagne, Kira Gregory, Brendan Klem, Kait Kucy, Citlali Loza, Amy Maetche, Fabian Mayer, Leigh McAdam, Vanessa Nim, Julie Roth, Tina Shaygan, Brooke Sovdi, Michelle St. Croix, Erin Tettensor, Katherine Ylitalo Print Advertising Coordinator Erin Starchuk, production@redpointmedia.ca Sales Assistant Robin Cook, rcook@redpointmedia.ca Director, National Sales Lindy Neustaedter Account Executives Elsa Amorim, Melissa Brown (on leave), Jocelyn Erhardt, Deise MacDougall, Anita McGillis, Caren Mendyk, Chelsey Swankhuizen Production Manager Mike Matovich Digital Advertising Specialist Katherine Jacob Pickering (on leave) Digital Advertising Coordinator Allison Dunne Audience Development/Reader Services Manager Rob Kelly Printing Transcontinental LGM Distribution City Print Distribution Inc.

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Photograph by Rebecca Middlebrook

Evan-Thomas Provincial Recreation Area, Kananaskis Country.


NOVEMBER IN THE MOUNTAINS Our roundup of what’s new in the mountains in and around Calgary. AvenueCalgary.com/Mountains

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has had over 30 years of experience in all aspects of the industry. As a natural leader in the kitchen, he believes in challenging himself and others to be the best that they can be. He literally was born into the industry, and by the age of 20 he was running the restaurant. After meeting the love of his life at the age of 22, he got married and had four amazing children. He worked in several different kitchens before purchasing a restaurant of his own. Kosta struggled with drug addiction in the past, which incidentally would lead to shutting down the restaurant. Thankfully, with the love, support and help of his wife, family, great friends and a focus on his goals, he came through. He has a huge heart and is always willing to lend a hand to those in need, especially those who struggle with addiction. He leads by example - it wouldn’t be out of the ordinary to see him mopping or doing dishes. “I don’t expect anyone to do anything that I wouldn’t do myself� he says.“I wouldn’t give up the loud, fast pace, stress and camaraderie of the kitchen for anything�. The Fine Diner Bistro is proud to sponsor LeftOvers. With donations of 25-30lbs of food every week, The Fine Diner has donated over 5400 lbs of food over the past 3 years!

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alumni and the community of local business leaders, to help answer that question. You can read more about this year’s judges on page 112. They are a truly impressive group and we couldn’t have done this without them. We received more than 300 eligible nominations. Our editorial team narrowed that down to a short list of about 70. The judging panel then looked at the overall impact of each candidate’s work — both their paid and volunteer contributions. It is the quintessential apples-to-oranges task and it inspired a lengthy debate to come to the final decisions.

Overall, it seems to always comes back to making a difference. Each Top 40 has to demonstrate that they have moved the needle, and that their work has already resulted in positive change. It is not enough to have a high salary or an impressive-sounding title; it’s not even enough to have a hard job and do it capably. The judges look for those candidates who don’t just do their job but those who have carved out a role larger than the expectations of their job and, in doing so, created something of value for us all. I hope you also find value in reading about this exceptional group of Calgarians.

Thank You to our Sponsors Top40Under40.com 2018


P P 40 U

Käthe Lemon Editor-in-Chief klemon@redpointmedia.ca

Join us on November 8 to celebrate this year's Top 40 Under 40. Tickets on sale now at avenuecalgary.com/ Top40Under40Tickets.


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Photograph by Jared Sych; hair and makeup by Citlali Loza (Artists Within); jewellery supplied by Brinkhaus. For information turn to page 143.

his year we mark the 20th edition of Top 40 Under 40 in Calgary, and while we have honed our judging process over the years, one thing has remained the same — that Top 40 is a celebration of the best and brightest in the city and an in-depth look at the diversity of opportunities and achievements happening here. The Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2018, presented in association with First Calgary Financial and the University of Calgary, includes leaders across a range of industries who are excelling in their individual endeavours. But if there is a commonality among them, it is that they are creating opportunities not just for themselves, but also for others. They are building companies that provide careers, doing research that improves and lengthens lives and pushing for ecologically and culturally sustainable practices that benefit both people and corporations. They are innovators — creating new products and technology and new ways of accessing everything from fresh food, to the arts, to the news. They are helping grow the capacity of both local and international non-profits to ensure more people share in the advantages created here. I am often asked what it takes to be selected as a Top 40 Under 40. Fortunately, each year we are able to rely on judges, selected from our Top 40


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823 6th Ave. SW. | 403-269-4800






CONTRIBUTORS CHRIS AMAT Chris Amat is a Calgary-based commercial photographer with a background in advertising — think of him as a low-rent, modern-day Don Draper with a dash of Lindsay Lohan. This cat dad of two enjoys long walks on faraway beaches and sipping hot chocolate in front of roaring fires. In his spare time, you can find him practicing karate in his parents’ backyard, dreaming of one day sparring with Jean-Claude Van Damme. Swipe right.

JESSICA BARRETT Jessica Barrett is a freelance journalist who recently returned to her home province of Alberta after more than a decade living on the west coast. Her work has appeared in outlets across the country including the National Post, CBC, the Calgary Herald and the Vancouver Sun. Jessica is endlessly fascinated by urban affairs and is excited to discover the people, places and issues that make Calgary a vibrant, inclusive and evolving city.



Pond hockey in the mountains is

spending years working in Edmonton, Vancouver

a quintessentially Canadian pastime.

and Toronto. His clients include Hedkandi, PARK

Find out where the best ice surfaces

and The Vaulte Beauty. He also shoots weddings and

are to get a game going.

family photos. Currently, he is focusing on portrait

Brendan Klem now calls Calgary home again after

work that shows off the successes and stories of the

GIFT GUIDE Great gifts for everyone on your list

amazing people of Alberta. See more of his work at brendanklemphotography.com.

(or maybe just for yourself) from local

B E S T G I F T S, E V E R A bunch of Calgarians consider the


best gift they’ve ever received and

Julie Roth is a Calgary-based stylist with experience

where you can get something similar

in editorials, marketing campaigns, commercial video

to give to someone special.

shoots and retail, as well as personal styling. Whether it’s drawing inspiration from Gucci’s latest collection or her 92-year-old oma, she always has her eye on fashion. Roth regularly appears on television as a fashion expert and has styled for brands such as the Fairmont Banff Springs, Hudson’s Bay, Huffington Post and Paul Hardy. Follow her on Instagram @style_by_jr.



Pond hockey photograph by Jake Finnan; Jessica Barrett photograph by Andy Fang

retailers both big and small.



Be there. For each step forward and every step back. If you’re without employer-sponsored benefits, we have a plan to fit your needs—so you can focus on being there for what really matters. 1-800-394-1965 | ab.bluecross.ca

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DETOURS Designing Reconciliation


Photograph by Jason Eng

here’s a message of reconciliation woven into the fabric of Otahpiaaki, an annual fashion week for Indigenous designers, taking place this year Nov. 5 to 10. Otahpiaaki was originally developed through Mount Royal University’s Bissett School of Business with guidance from PARK, the organization behind the PARKSHOW and PARKLUXE fashion events.

Model Heather Hockley in a jacket and T-shirt by streetwear label Section 35, skirt by Tala Tootoosis, fedora by Tobi Eagle Speaker (Maatsowakii “Pretty Woman” Creations) and purse from Moonstone Creation. Protest artwork by Christi Belcourt, Dylan Miner and David Bernie.

39 AvenueCalgary.com



Deep in a damp cold dugout That far below the muddy trench Gave shelter from the shells without

For more information visit otahpiaakifashionweek.com 40


The First World War Poetry of E. Leroy Churchill


ournals written by Corporal E. Leroy Churchill, 8th Battalion, CEF, during the First World War were rediscovered 100 years later when his descendants began to record their family history. Churchill, who was from Alberta, kept a daily record of his wartime experiences and also penned poems that offer his unique insight into life in the trenches. In honour of the 100th anniversary of the November 11 armistice that ended the First World War, we are reprinting one of Corporal Churchill’s poems.

We sat in mud and cold and filthy stench ‘Next relief for listening post’ I shiver as I rise and stand Then glide out noiseless as a ghost Over the top to ‘No Man’s Land’ Light as day by flares so bright Danger threatens all the way Sniper is watching all the night As machine guns round us play Halfway to Fritz’s line we crawl At last we reach the post Down in the crater I slip and sprawl I dare not wait or I am lost Fear chills my blood as with staring eyes I gaze around that blasted waste Time never went so slow before The minutes drag and mock my haste A sniper shoots, I hug the earth Then silence grim — I look again Ghostly shadows seem to move ’Til I could swear that they were men The silence and the darkness seem to crash And then with awful roar And jets of flame our guns spit forth Their messages of hate — Ah! this is war At length my dreary watch is o’er The new relief is in my place With thankful heart I leave him there And cautiously my way retrace.

Poetry by E. Leroy Churchill, introduction written by Anne Gafiuk, Churchill family biographer.

ABOVE Corporal E. Leroy Churchill in uniform. RIGHT Pages from Churchill’s journal.

Photograph by Don Molyneux

Now in its third year, Otahpiaaki helps draw a line between cultural appropriation and appreciation by providing a way to support Indigenous businesses and designers through either purchasing their products or simply listening to and sharing their message. The main-event fashion show will be staged this year at City Hall underneath the Chief David Crowchild memorial and feature the work of designers from First Nations, Metis, Inuit and northern communities. The name, Otahpiaaki, is a Blackfoot word for when the vamp (the top of the moccasin) is sewn to the rest of the moccasin, and was chosen to reflect the spirit of togetherness of the event. Patti May-Derbyshire, Otahpiaaki’s faculty champion, says the conversation surrounding residential schools, modern-day colonialism and justice for First Nations, Metis, Inuit and northern communities is a key element. “A driving principle behind our fashion show is that the work of reconciliation is for neighbours. We really believe in Indigenous and non-Indigenous relationships forming in using fashion … to share truth — and there are some hard truths,” she says. One of the featured designers this year is Edmonton’s Derek Jagodzinsky of the LUXX Ready-to-Wear line. Like many other young creatives, Jagodzinsky uses his designs as a way to learn about and take pride in his own culture. “When I was young, I wasn’t that proud about being Indigenous. I wanted to find out about my culture, and why I should be proud,” he says. “My grandmother went to a residential school; I didn’t learn my language or about my culture growing up.” Most of the items featured at Otahpiaaki are available for purchase afterward. Beyond style, many of the items also have deeper significance regarding history and healing. “When you’re wearing Indigenous fashions from our 760 First Nations, Metis, Inuit and northern communities, part of your role is just really getting the word out,” May-Derbyshire says. —Hadeel Abdel-Nabi

Formulated for you. LAB11.CA /// @LAB11OFFICIAL /// #201, 217 19TH STREET NW AvenueCalgary.com



Eboshi from Cartel Madras, performing at Commonwealth Bar and Stage.

The New Hip-Hop Crop JAE STERLING Between his rap career and singing with local band Citysleep, this talented and versatile artist, who got his start on the 10 at 10 stage, is a force to reckon with on Calgary’s hip-hop scene. This past year, Sterling released the song “EONS” on SoundCloud and an EP, Vagabond, on Apple Music and Tidal. CARTEL MADRAS


These Calgary sisters of South Indian (Tamil) back-

With her mellifluous voice gliding atop soulfully soft

ground, known by the stage names Eboshi and

beats, this Calgary singer-songwriter-producer’s

Contra, refer to their style of hip-hop as “goonda”

sound draws from hip-hop as well as urban jazz

rap. “They’re bold artists who dominate the stage,”

and R & B. Johnson describes Natmi as “a mix of

Johnson says. “I feel like they really have a place in

SZA and Erykah Badu.” – H.A-N.

hip-hop here.”

For more information visit 10at10.ca

Celebrating Alumni Excellence Every year SAIT recognizes graduates who are accomplishing great things in our community, on the national stage and around the world. Congratulations to the 2018 recipients of SAIT’s Distinguished Alumni and Outstanding Young Alumni Awards. Congratulations to Scott Westby, Film and Video Production ’08, on being named to Avenue’s 2018 Top 40 Under 40! Visit sait.ca/alumni to read more.



Photograph by Michael Grondin


hough you may not catch it at first glace, Calgary’s hip-hop scene is a vibrant one in a period of growth. At the crux of that scene is 10x Music & Culture, the team behind the 10 at 10 hip-hop showcase series. What began as a night featuring 10 hip-hop artists performing for 10 minutes each has evolved into a launch pad for Canadian hip-hop talent. Beni Johnson, one of the 10x founders and the organization’s current director, has seen the platform grow to include streams for artist development, artist marketing and event production. Here are a few artists Johnson says to look for at the next 10 at 10 showcase:

Festival of Crafts photograph courtesy of Festival of Crafts; Spruce Meadows photograph © Spruce Meadows Media.

do to

this month Festival of Crafts.



OCT. 30 TO NOV. 4

NOV. 3 TO 11

This biographical musical dives into

This annual festival showcases

the life of singer-songwriter Carole

films from 18 European countries in-

King, who penned hits including

cluding Bulgaria, Italy, Poland, Serbia

“(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural

and others. Curated by country-spe-

Woman” and “You’ve Got a Friend.”

cific cultural organizations, the films

The production covers her personal

are shown in their original language

journey and professional accomplish-

with English subtitles.

ments across 13 years.

Globe Cinema, 617 8 Ave. S.W.,

Southern Alberta Jubilee


Auditorium, 1415 14 Ave. N.W., calgary.broadway.com



International Christmas Market.


NOV. 10 TO DEC. 9

NOV. 16 TO DEC. 2

NOV. 1 TO 4

Think you know the story of litera-

Held at Spruce Meadows over

Shop for made-in-Canada jewellery,

ture’s most famous vampire? In

three weekends, the International

food products, artwork and more at

Vertigo Theatre’s latest production,

Christmas Market is a great spot

the 32nd edition of the Festival of

Dracula’s arch-enemy Professor

to do your holiday shopping. Enjoy

Crafts. The annual holiday market

Abraham Van Helsing joins up with

performances by festive carollers

brings more than 250 vendors to the

a trio of actors to reveal the vam-

and shop more than 300 vendors

BMO Centre for four days of shop-

pire’s real backstory by embodying

in indoor and outdoor areas of the

ping and holiday cheer.

40 different characters.

equestrian facility.

BMO Centre, Stampede Park, 20

Vertigo Theatre Playhouse, 115

18011 Spruce Meadows Way S.W.,

Roundup Way S.E., festivalofcrafts.ca

9 Ave. S.E., vertigotheatre.com


Jennifer Dalen

Ryan Scott

Connie DeSousa

Radio, Television and Broadcast News ‘12

Business Administration ‘01

Professional Cooking ‘00

2018 Outstanding Young Alumna Program Director, Real Country 95.5

2018 Distinguished Alumnus President & CEO, Avalon Master Builder

Six years after graduating, Jennifer is Program Director for NewCap Radio’s Red Deer station and oversees 20 other stations across Alberta. She also works with local non-profits including Dreams Take Flight and, by serving as Vice President of the Association of Country Music in Alberta and on SAIT’s radio program Advisory Board, Jennifer nurtures upcoming musicians and broadcasters.

Ryan’s entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to sustainable development make him a leader in the homebuilding industry. Past president of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association of Alberta and a founding member of the CHBA Net Zero Energy Housing Council, he partners with SAIT in researching green building innovation and technologies, and in offering a scholarship to support SAIT students.

2018 Distinguished Alumna Co-Owner/Co-Chef, CHARCUT, charbar, Alley Burger, Rooftop Bar @ Simmons Renowned chef Connie DeSousa is focused on making Calgary a culinary hot spot. After honing her skills in kitchens around the globe and international culinary competitions, Connie returned home to co-create CHARCUT Roast House. A tireless advocate for up-andcoming chefs, she serves on SAIT’s Culinary Advisory Board, shares her expertise with students and often hires SAIT alumni. AvenueCalgary.com



Openings DINER DELUXE The popular local diner chain that started out on Edmonton Trail’s breakfast row and went on to open a second location in Aspen Woods has added a new third location in Mahogany. dinerdeluxe.com

DRIFT LUXURY NAIL BAR Get a pedicure while listening to guided meditation through headphones or treat yourself to a hydrating facial or relaxing massage here. 108, 8400 Blackfoot Tr. S.E., 403301-0888, driftluxurynailbar.com

FLOWER & WOLF Dine on pancetta pizzetta, Southern fried chicken and footlong Wagyu hot dogs at this new restaurant inside the Sheraton Suites Calgary Eau Claire. 255 Barclay Parade S.W., 403-517-6666, flowerandwolfcalgary.com

MAN OF DISTINCTION This men’s consignment store carries suits, denim, casualwear, shoes and more at its new location in Inglewood. 1418 9 Ave. S.E., 403-454-3133, manofdistinction.com

MODERN STEAK The second location of Modern Steak features a cocktail lounge and, come spring, rooftop dining overlooking downtown Calgary. 100 8 Ave. S.E., modernsteak.ca

OL’ BEAUTIFUL BREWING CO. Calgary’s Barley Belt expands with the addition of Ol’ Beautiful Brewing Co.’s new taproom designed by Fort Architecture. 1103 12 St. S.E., 403-978-4721, olbeautiful.com 44


The Team at Birchcliff would like to congratulate

REBECCA MORLEY for her place among Avenue Calgary’s Top 40 Under 40.

Rebecca’s exceptional contribution as a parent, professional, director and volunteer to our community, our city and our province is why she is deserving of this award. Suite 1000, 600 - 3rd Ave S.W. birchcliffenergy.com AvenueCalgary.com


CONGRATULATIONS To The 2018 Top 40 Under 40 Nominees & Selectees! Like those nominated, we believe in supporting our community. It’s who we are. Congratulations to each of you for helping to shape and grow our city. We’re proud to be making money make a difference through our support of Avenue’s Top 40 Under 40.

Banking local just makes sense.






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They are Calgary’s rising stars, the next generation of movers and shakers, tomorrow’s captains of industry. They are building the city literally and figuratively, creating opportunities and opening doors for other Calgarians while meeting their own lofty goals. They are the Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2018, presented in association with First Calgary Financial and the University of Calgary, and as easy as it is to fall into cliché and hyperbole describing what they do, they are each singular in their results. Their work has already changed, and will continue to change, the city, and their respective industries. From technology developers to creative entrepreneurs, from non-profit innovators to masters of the C-suite, from leaders in the arts to groundbreakers in medical research — the Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2018 demonstrates the breadth and depth of what is being achieved in Calgary right now and provides a glimpse at a bright future.

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AND Jared Sych


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HAIR AND MAKEUP BY Tamsyn Gagne, Kira Gregory, Amy Maetche AND Michelle St. Croix (ARTISTS WITHIN)




BY Hadeel Abdel-Nabi, Shelley Arnusch, Jessica Barrett, Matthew Coyte, Marzena Czarnecka, Christina Frangou, Christina Freudenthaler, Andrew Guilbert, Jennifer Hamilton, Fabian Mayer, Vanessa Nim, Tina Shaygan AND Alana Willerton

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47 AvenueCalgary.com

Carrie Bruno 36 Founder and CEO, The Mama Coach; Registered Nurse, IBCLC Lactation Consultant WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

Registered nurse-turned-entrepreneur Carrie Bruno saw the need for qualified supports for new parents and started The Mama Coach. She has now sold her program to more than 25 licensees across the country, building a network of nurses committed to making motherhood easier.


Photograph by Brendan Klem







For 13 years, registered nurse Carrie Bruno worked in labour and delivery. After starting a family of her own she tried many different jobs within her profession, even moving to the operating room. However, she struggled to feel fulfilled because she wasn’t directly supporting moms and their families and missed that connection with her patients. Just over three years ago, Bruno realized she was sick of “doing everything just okay” in her life. She wasn’t ready to give up nursing, which she still loves, but she was ready to give up the shift work. Now, as the founder and CEO of The Mama Coach, Bruno is helping families with the stress of new parenthood and helping other nurses become entrepreneurs. The Mama Coach focuses on providing qualified, non-judgmental support to mothers and their families. Bruno created the programming using evidence-informed research and her understanding of the stressors families face to provide prenatal education, newborn support, sleep coaching and more. With the belief that every family is unique, Mama Coaches draw on their registered nursing skills to perform assessments for client-families and help them reach their own goals. Bruno has built what started as a side hustle in 2015 with revenues of $60,000, into a full-scale business with revenues of $250,000, that is now a full-time job for both her and her husband. In May 2017, Bruno developed The Mama Coach’s licensing program. In less than a year she had sold the business license more than 25 times to registered nurses across Canada who wanted to make extra money, or make The Mama Coach their full-time gig. Bruno is now hard at work on a telehealth division of her company, as well as a not-for-profit division inspired by a Christmas give-back program The Mama Coach ran last year that helped 28 families across Canada — far exceeding its goal of just four. “I don’t really do anything on a small scale,” says Bruno. “My vision explodes quickly. No one’s ever said, ‘Carrie can’t do that.’ I’ve never heard it anyway, or at least, I haven’t listened.” -C. Freudenthaler P 40 U

Photographed near Reconciliation Bridge.



Photograph by Jared Sych

Dr. Sean Carleton


Dr. Sean Carleton contributes to the process of truth and reconciliation through his public 34 Assistant Professor, Mount talks, research and media appearances, Royal University; Co-Founder, and by teaching new perspectives on Graphic History Collective Indigenous-settler relations.


“Always historicize, which means every time you are confronted with a contemporary problem, try to understand it in its social context. Context is everything.”



Dr. Sean Carleton started out at Simon Fraser University with the goal of becoming a hockey historian, until a class on the history of Indigenous peoples in Canada “completely transformed” his life. He has gone on to give talks at more than 30 national and international conferences, published more than 20 articles, essays and reviews in leading scholarly journals, helped hundreds of students understand that we are all treaty people and helped spark national debate about the founders of Confederation. Carleton drew attention in 2017 during a national discussion regarding buildings named for Father of Confederation Hector-Louis Langevin. Many saw Langevin as a troubling figure because he was viewed as the founder of the residential school system. But Carleton’s research shows that while Langevin supported residential schooling, it was John A. Macdonald, as Canada’s first Prime Minister and superintendent general of Indian Affairs at the time, who played the key role in initiating and defending the residential school system. In an article for the Toronto Star, Carleton made his case. The piece sparked national debate and Carleton was invited to appear on multiple media outlets, including CBC’s The National, to explain his position. While there were many supportive voices, the blowback he received for his article and appearance on The National ranged from Twitter troll rants to death threats. “Often when people are confronted with an interpretation of the past that doesn’t register, their reaction is anger and frustration because they don’t understand,” Carleton says. “But that’s exactly why we need more histories like this, because we’ve been taught a whitewashed, celebratory version of the past. And that’s pretty detrimental to figuring out social problems today.” History is a field in which it can be difficult to pinpoint direct impacts of research, but things like the recent removal of the Macdonald sculpture in Victoria and the fact that the City of Calgary has confirmed that any references to the renaming of Langevin Bridge will not refer to Langevin as the architect of the residential school system were certainly due in part to Carleton’s work. In his efforts to bring history to the public, Carleton co-founded the Graphic History Collective (GHC) with a group of historians and artists in 2008. Their work includes a graphic novel tracing the evolution of International Worker’s Day, a poster series covering everything from radical-bookstore history to Japanese-Canadian internment and a labour-history colouring book. GHC has received numerous awards, including the Canadian Historical Association’s Public History Prize and the 2017 Wilson Book Prize for the graphic novel Drawn To Change. “The work that [historians] do is socially relevant for everybody,” says Carleton. “We just need to find ways to share that research and to inspire people to think history is not boring, it’s exciting, and has lessons that can literally make our lives better if we learn from them.” —A.G. P 40 U



Col Cseke 34 Artistic Director, Inside Out Theatre WHY HE’S A TOP 40

Col Cseke’s work with Inside Out Theatre and its Good Host program is making theatre more accessible for theatre artists and audience members with disabilities.



He Helped a Community Theatre Company Turn Pro

He has Made Theatre in Calgary More Accessible

Since Cseke was hired in 2010, Inside Out has grown from having an operating budget of $70,000 to having annual revenues of $300,000. “As an arts administrator, I think the biggest misperception is that our work is not grounded in a very deep and thorough understanding of business practice and capabilities,” Cseke says. “I very often get very well-meaning people from the corporate world giving me some really basic advice.”

Cseke’s crowning achievement with Inside Out is the Good Host program, a comprehensive initiative to make performances accessible. “A big part of what we want to do is encourage and develop artists with disabilities,” Cseke says. “It’s pretty difficult for someone to imagine themselves as a theatre artist if they’ve never been an audience member.” Good Host has three initiatives: “relaxed performances” with toned-down lighting and sound; American Sign Language-interpretation shows and live-audio description for the visually impaired. Currently all the major professional theatre companies in Calgary are Good Host partners and last season there were more than 40 Good Host performances.

“Being an ally is not something you can claim for yourself. Being an ally is a signal of trust that other people give to you. It’s not enough for me to say I’m an ally to artists with disabilities. That’s only true if those artists claim me as that.”

He Helps Change Perceptions about People with Disabilities

“The misconception that we encounter at Inside Out all the time is that work made by folks with disabilities is inherently like a community play, or it’s charitable, whereas the reality is that some of the most exciting, artistically adventurous, daring, professional performances I’ve ever seen are by artists with disabilities,” Cseke says. “It’s not the best disability theatre I’ve seen, it’s just the best theatre I’ve seen.” He Started an Improv Workshop for People with Dementia

Photographed at The Big Secret Theatre, Arts Commons. 50


Another one of Cseke’s initiatives has been the Village Improv for Alzheimer’s Club, a weekly improv workshop for participants with Alzheimer’s and dementia, hosted by various care facilities throughout the city. —S.A.

Photograph by Jared Sych




Col Cseke has long been a fixture of the Calgary theatre scene as a playwright and theatre artist, creating innovative shows with companies such as Downstage and Verb Theatre. In 2010 he was hired as the artistic director at Inside Out Theatre, a company whose mandate is to present and create works featuring artists with disabilities. In his eight years with Inside Out, Cseke has overseen the addition of a professional theatre company to what was previously a community theatre organization and created a groundbreaking program to make theatre more accessible city-wide. P 40 U

Katie Davies

Katie Davies has helped Canada’s largest Boys and Girls Club create new initiatives that help youth graduate high school and address Indigenous issues and youth homelessness. She also helped create Alberta’s first youth housing program for the gender- and sexually diverse community. P 40 U




Photograph by Brendan Klem


Katie Davies started out with Boys and Girls Clubs of Calgary (BGCC) 16 years ago as a group home worker. She recalls her first day on the job as sink or swim. “Basically, I got handed the keys, and they said, ‘okay, six kids between 12 and 18 live here, and good luck,’” Davies says. “It was actually a great experience because I just had to figure it out, so I listened to kids and heard what they had to say.” Now as chief operating officer of Canada’s largest Boys and Girls Club, Davies no longer works on the front line, but she’s just as attentive to the needs of the roughly 20,000 youth and families BGCC serves. The programs Davies has spearheaded are improving BGCC and the lives of Calgary youth. Her actions are guiding by one question: how can BGCC end a young person’s homelessness? “That one question ended up becoming the vision,” she says. “It cleared away the noise and the politics around what is the best thing to do.” The change in philosophy meant shifting from treating symptoms of homelessness to addressing root causes, including trauma and family breakdown. BGCC now involves its young clients in decision-making, fostering a sense of ownership over their situations. The club has also stepped back from punitive enforcement of rules against swearing and inebriation that had ended up putting youth back onto the street. Davies and her team have also created programs tailored to groups with higher rates of suicide and victimization, like Aura, Alberta’s first youth housing program serving the genderand sexually diverse community, and Home Fire, a similar program for Indigenous youth. Davies and her team have also championed All In for Youth, a partnership with the United Way and other local organizations that provides resources to support “It’s so unjust for kids to kids to graduate high school. not have somebody on Outside of her work with BGCC, Davies served on the board of directheir team who’s going tors for Raising the Roof, a national to advocate for them and charity dedicated to finding soluhelp them succeed. All kids tions for homelessness, from 2013 to 2017. She has also worked with deserve the opportunity the National Learning Community to be kids and we as a soon Youth Homelessness since 2012. Davies never loses sight of why ciety have a responsibility her work is important. “It’s so unjust to help every kid thrive.” for kids to not have somebody on their team who’s going to advocate for them and help them succeed,” she says. “All kids deserve the opportunity to be kids and we as a society have a responsibility to help every kid thrive.” —A.G. TO

39 COO, Boys and Girls Clubs of Calgary




Jerilyn Dressler 38 Executive Director, Distress Centre WHY SHE’S A TOP 40







The Distress Centre answers hundreds of calls, texts and online chats from Calgarians each day, saving countless lives in the process. Last year, the Distress Centre responded to 122,000 contacts — including 87,860 crisis contacts, 19 per cent more than in 2015 — with 530 volunteers contributing 54,813 hours. Overseeing this vital service is Jerilyn Dressler. As a psychology student at the University of Saskatchewan, Dressler wanted to go into clinical work and as an undergraduate she volunteered at the Distress Centre to get experience addressing a wide range of issues. But she soon realized leadership was her true calling. “Distress Centre offered an environment where I could connect with people and support them, and also learn about myself and grow and evolve as a human being,” she says. Dressler played a key role in developing Distress Centre’s online services, and now as the executive director, she focuses on expanding those services thr-ough partnerships and outreach, including partnering with P 40 U


the University of Calgary to extend more services to students. Expanding Distress Centre’s services to include text messages and online chats allows more people to reach out to get help in ways they feel comfortable. “It’s scary to say, ‘I feel suicidal,’ and we’re seeing twice as many people do that online as opposed to over the phone,” Dressler says. According to the centre’s data from June 2018, 12 per cent of the phone calls and 24 per cent of the online contacts it received were about suicide. Dressler also helped develop Canada’s first national suicide prevention service, and Distress Centre was one of several soft-launch locations for the project. Her work on the project earned her an Excellence and Innovation Award from Crisis Services Canada.

“Our volunteers care so deeply about connecting with others, about caring for others and listening and helping people feel less alone. That’s where I get inspiration if I need it or if I’m feeling a bit burnt out.” Outside of work, Dressler likes to spend time with her daughter and read books by her favourite author, Brené Brown. Having once been a volunteer herself, she encourages self-care for her entire team because she says it’s difficult to care for others without caring for yourself first. And ultimately, their job is caring for anyone who reaches out. “Distress Centre is about helping someone through a bad day — whatever that may look like for them,” she says. “Sometimes it’s a bad day and sometimes it’s saving lives.” —T.S.

Photograph by Brendan Klem

Jerilyn Dressler played a key role in expanding the Distress Centre’s services from phone calls only to text messaging and online chat, ensuring Calgary’s only 24/7 crisis support service is more accessible. She was also a leader in the development of Canada’s first national suicide prevention service.


Photograph by Brendan Klem


32 Assistant Professor, Departments of Psychiatry, Critical Care Medicine and Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary


Dr. Kirsten Fiest



Dr. Kirsten Fiest crushes old stereotypes of scientists. She wears leather-trimmed blazers rather than lab coats, favours human interactions over microscopes and speaks with the kind of exuberance that most scientists shy away from. Case in point: when asked to describe her job, she responds, “I love what I do and going to work every day is easy!” The exclamation mark is hers. As an assistant professor at the University of Calgary, Fiest is what her colleagues call a “rare academic triple threat” — she drives new science, mentors graduate students and fosters community engagement. Fiest is an epidemiologist who works in intensive care medicine and community health. She applies science to one of the most emotionally wrought experiences in a human being’s life: when a person or their family member is admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU). “I work to engage and empower families of the sickest “You can’t do patients in research to ultianything in mately improve patient and family outcomes,” she says. isolation. I’m in the ICU are at surrounded by highPatients risk of dying or having a diverse team a long-term disability. More than half will develop delirium, of individuals many — both patients and from different and family members — suffer longterm depression, anxiety and backgrounds stress disorder. who motivate post-traumatic Fiest looks for ways to imme and inspire prove the ICU experience for me to do great patients and their families. With five major studies underway, work.” she has led or collaborated on research that’s received more than $18 million in funding, and has published over 70 peer-reviewed journal articles. In an unusual approach, Fiest involves former ICU patients and their families in research — not studying them but enlisting them to help. These patients and families create questionnaires, recruit participants for studies and lead some difficult discussions in the ICU. “Through this research, I am changing how researchers view patients, which represents a fundamental shift from traditional thinking,” she says. One of her current projects examines whether family members of critically ill patients can help detect the early signs of ICU delirium, which is often recognized late and leads to longterm cognitive dysfunction. Fiest is equally passionate about her work as WHY SHE’S A TOP 40 a mentor to students. She’s also a member of the A scientist and teacher, Dr. Kirsten university’s advisory committee for the Office of Professionalism, Equity and Diversity, which Fiest is helping decrease the hardis dedicated to improving representation of ships experienced by patients women, Indigenous peoples, cultural minorities and people with disabilities. and their families in the intensive “I hope to improve the diversity of Calgary’s care unit by recruiting them as workforce so we can all benefit from their research partners. collective expertise,” she says. —C.Frangou P 40 U



Kirsten Fleming 36 Executive Director, Run Calgary WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

Over the past six years, Kirsten Fleming has almost doubled Run Calgary’s operating budget and added three full-time staff positions. She is making Calgary a destination for elite runners, while promoting the already-existing running community in the city.


“I’m not afraid to ask for anything. I got the nickname of the asker because I’ll ask sponsors for money, I’m always willing to kind of push to see what we can get to make the race or an event better.”

Photographed at Enmax Park.

Photograph by Jared Sych







Kirsten Fleming was already questioning whether she should stay in journalism when she interviewed billionaire Sir Richard Branson eight years ago. But it was Branson who commented on just how passionate Fleming sounded about her new hobby, running. Since then, Fleming has turned her passion into her career. After quitting her job at Breakfast Television in 2010, Fleming moved to Dubai for a year. She had family there who were avid runners, so she joined a running club, then volunteered as an event coordinator for a half-marathon. That experience gave Fleming a taste of what it was like to organize races. When she came back to Calgary, she volunteered with Run Calgary, the organization that operates the Calgary Marathon. When the position of executive director for the organization came up, she applied. “I was so underqualified. The board of directors took a huge chance on me,” says Fleming. “But I knew that I would do the hard work to figure it out.” Since taking over the position in 2012, Fleming has helped Run Calgary almost double its budget from $800,000 to $1.5 million by securing more sponsorships, increasing participation and adding more events. When Fleming started at Run Calgary, she was the only permanent employee, and the Calgary Marathon was its only event. There are now three other full-time employees and six more races on the roster. Fleming clearly isn’t afraid to test out new ideas. She sees the organization’s flagship event, the Calgary Marathon, as an ever-changing experience, so she often experiments with different types of races. An example of this was introducing a 150-kilometre race to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary. “You can’t survive by just doing the status quo,” says Fleming. “You have to innovate to stay relevant.” Fleming also created Run Calgary’s elite program in 2013. The program encourages runners from around the world to participate in the Calgary Marathon by offering $50,000 in prize money and helping them organize travel and find billets for their stay. Fleming was also at the head of the push that brought the Canadian half-marathon national championships to Calgary for four straight years from 2015 to 2018. Better competition and bigger prizes have turned Calgary into an elite racing destination. Fleming’s work directly affects the community that has embraced her since she started running almost a decade ago. “The community is my second family,” she says. “People who don’t run only see the physical act. I’ve gotten so much out of running: friends, confidence and, of course, a job.” —M.Coyte P 40 U



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Christina & Hyder Hassan 28 and 35 Co-Founders, FullSoul Canada WHY THEY’RE TOP 40S

The Hassans co-founded and manage a not-for-profit agency that equips hospitals in Uganda with much-needed medical supplies used in childbirth.


Photograph by Brendan Klem







Back when she was completing her BSc at the University of Waterloo, Christina Hassan participated in a co-op program that sent her to Uganda to work as a program administrator at a university and at local hospitals. She ended up watching a lot of women and children die in childbirth. Worldwide, a woman dies from the complications of pregnancy and childbirth every two minutes. In Uganda, hospitals often lack even basic equipment, and labouring mothers are expected to bring their own delivery supplies, including sterile blades, gloves and sheets. Shortages of equipment mean that items that are intended to be disposable are often reused, increasing the spread of dangerous infections. When Christina came home, she felt compelled to do something. In 2013, she and Hyder Hassan, her boyfriend at the time and now husband (the couple married in 2015) co-founded FullSoul Canada, a notfor-profit agency that helps equip hospitals in Uganda with medical tools for safer vaginal deliveries. The Hassans have since raised more than $65,000 and have harnessed more than 12,000 volunteer hours from a group they refer to as P 40 U

“Team Canada.” FullSoul Canada has delivered 759 medical tools to three hospitals in Uganda, meaning approximately 65,000 babies have been delivered more safely. The Hassans’ work has been recognized with multiple humanitarian awards, including the YMCA International Peace Medallion, the Terry Fox Humanitarian Award, and later this month, the Rotary People of Action Young Innovators Award. One unique aspect of FullSoul is that the medical kits the group supplies are all branded with the name of the hospital they go to rather than FullSoul’s name. “That

ownership gives dignity and signifies good giving,” Christina says. FullSoul Canada’s mission is inspired by the good-giving mentality and by Hyder’s version of the three Rs: relationships, reciprocity and return on social investment. “Our life is defined by our community,” says Hyder. “What we’ve seen is that usually people spend a few years in their careers, become successful, and after they’ve amassed a certain status and have financial stability, their giving scales up. We said, ‘Why can’t we give [this way] as of today?’” In addition to their work with FullSoul, the Hassans give back

locally through volunteering as members of the Calgary Chapter of the University of Waterloo Alumni Association and Calgary Fish Creek Rotary Club, and by creating the Hyder and Christina Hassan Family Fund through the Calgary Foundation. When they’re not doing philanthropic work, they also both have busy careers: Hyder is director of investment services at First Calgary Financial, where he is responsible for a $500-million member portfolio, while Christina is on track to complete her Juris Doctor in April 2019 through the University of Calgary. -C.Freudenthaler




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35 President and Executive Producer, Calgary Pride; Vice President, Travel Gay Canada; Founder and Chief Facilitator, Collectivity; Co-Founder, Kingsley Creative; Program Lead, Event Management Program, Bow Valley College


Jason Kingsley has helped make Calgary Pride one of the fastest growing Pride festivals in Canada. He also advocates for the gender- and sexually diverse community by running diversity and inclusivity training. In addition, he’s an entrepreneur and teaches at Bow Valley College.








When Jason Kingsley became a member of the board of directors for Calgary Pride seven years ago, it was a three-day event with a parade that drew around 4,000 people. Since then, Kingsley, who has served as Calgary Pride’s president and executive producer for the past two years, has helped it grow into a festival that now stretches over 10 days and encompasses almost 60 events, including the parade, which now attracts about 80,000 spectators and more than 7,000 participants. “We’ve seen it grow tremendously over the past couple of years. We continue to kind of joke that we’re the fastest growing Pride in Canada,” he says. Beyond the numbers, impressive as they are, Pride has also helped pave the way for the formal apology from the Calgary Police Service (CPS) to the gender- and sexually diverse (GSD) community earlier this year. The apology marked a major move forward — acknowledging and accepting past wrongs and committing to working toward a better relationship between the police and the GSD communities. While it was certainly a team effort, the exponential growth of the festival in terms of both participation and impact would not have been possible without Kingsley’s event management expertise and entrepreneurial background. Alongside his work with Pride, Kingsley leads the event management program at Bow Valley College. He is also the co-founder of Kingsley Creative — a specialized event management and production company. Kingsley is also a founder and chief facilitator for Collectivity, a company that creates and leads diversity and inclusion training, workshops and consultations. Collectivity has worked with Travel Alberta, Tourism Calgary, the Calgary Stampede and the CPS, as well as other local organizations. Kingsley’s drive to build both his volunteer and professional life around advocacy comes from experiencing discrimination first-hand. In 1997, when Kingsley moved with his family from Toronto to Calgary as a teenager, he found this to be a city that wasn’t as open to inclusion as he has helped make it today. “The high school I went to wasn’t openly accepting at that time,” he says. “And so, Pride was the one day of the year where you could go out and be yourself. I didn’t have to hide or censor any part of my identity and I was just free to be my authentic self.” That one-day-a-year freedom turned into the motivation that fuelled other aspects of Kingsley’s life. Though his work and advocacy endeavours are multi-faceted, he has managed to make them work together toward one goal: a more inclusive Calgary. “There’s been a lot of progress, but we haven’t reached that destination yet,” he says. “There’s still adversity that people face, and as long as people still face these challenges and can’t be free to be their authentic selves, that’s what still motivates me.” — H.A-N. P 40 U

Photograph by Brendan Klem

Jason Kingsley

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Jeremy Klaszus has pioneered the concept of pop-up journalism in Calgary and has created a new platform for in-depth, local coverage of topics that matter to Calgarians..




35 Founder, The Sprawl


Jeremy Klaszus

and designed to tackle individual topics through in-depth articles and podcasts on an as-needed basis rather than filling a preset amount of space or time. It has covered topics including the 2017 municipal election, the City’s most recent budget and Calgary’s Olympic bid, focusing on each one at a time. An example of what Klaszus calls “slow journalism,” he conceived of The Sprawl as a counterbalance to the 24-hour news cycle. The Sprawl allows Klaszus, a self-described “solopreneur journalist” to spend time digging deep into Calgary subjects, only reporting when called for, a rarity in his profession. “What I’m doing is luxurious in a way,” he says. “I’ve set it up so that I’m off the hamster wheel, so I don’t have to worry about any of the daily stuff — I can really spend time with something.” The Sprawl now counts more than 450 Patreon supporters, who contribute about $3,500 USD monthly to the project. True to its community focus, Klaszus often uses story topics that have been suggested to him and sometimes asks supporters to vote on what The Sprawl will cover next. In every case, the coverage is extensive — The Sprawl focuses on one topic at a time and dives into it. Stories are also doggedly Calgary-focused, is one of the reasons Klaszus “As my wife says which believes he’s attracted so much supwhen she’s trying port. “People value the stories of the and there are just fewer places to ground me: city where those stories are being told,” You’re not as im- he says. “We need to know about portant as you the community in which we live, this is one way to do it.” think you are. That’s andThe Sprawl’s innovative approach what I’m always to reporting has garnered national winning Best News Covertrying to remember. attention, age: Small Newsroom at this year’s You’re not a super Digital Publishing Awards for its covhero; it’s not all up erage of the civic election. The Sprawl also one of five participants in to you. You can was the Digital News Innovation Chalcontribute in a small lenge (DNIC), a partnership between University and Facebook to way to journalism in Ryerson support emerging Canadian news Calgary. You don’t start-ups. The only participant from need to try and be west of Ontario, The Sprawl will receive to $100,000 in funding from the everything to up DNIC, allowing it to build a website, everyone and save hire a community manager and pay the world.” freelancers. Klaszus seems to have found a way to keep his community informed in Jeremy Klaszus wears his love of an age of digital upheaval. “People are hungry P 40 U local on his sleeve — his left fore- for in-depth stuff. And, when you bring arm is covered in tattoos of Alberta them something that has substance and they flowers. But that’s not the only ink can see you put time and care into, it stands he has dedicated to where he lives. out because right now there’s just so much Klaszus is the founder of The Sprawl, an online digital noise, that when you bring something local news source that he calls a “pop-up journal- that’s calm and in-depth, people take notice.” ism model.” The Sprawl is ad-free, crowdfunded —A.G.

Photograph by Jared Sych

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Kye Kocher

Photographed at Seeds to Greens farm in southeast Calgary.

33 Former General Manager, YYC Growers; Urban Farming Advocate WHY HE’S A TOP 40







Kye Kocher’s farming quest began in 2012, after his seventh open-heart surgery. Born with a congenital heart condition, he is no stranger to hospitals. But during a lengthy hospital stay six years ago, he realized just how disconnected health and nutrition are in our society. “It became abundantly clear just how truly awful hospital food is, how little nutrients there are, and how far the concept of health has strayed from the environment and our diet,” says Kocher. He became determined to find a way to help transform the food system so people could eat nutritious, healthy meals made from farm-fresh food. He began volunteering at the Cornucopia Communal Garden in Inglewood, which led to his involvement as garden lead for Sunnyside Shared Community Garden, and eventually to board positions on the volunteer-run farm co-operative YYC Growers as secretary in 2014 and president in 2016. All the while, Kocher was running his own farm, Grand Trunk Veggies. He put that on hiatus in February of this year when he was hired as the first general manager of YYC Growers, a position he recently left. In this position, he managed three full-time and six P 40 U


“How you choose to eat really determines how you choose to interact with the environment. We showcase the people doing good work around us and provide options that are accessible to everyone so they can be part of a better place.”

part-time staff and liaised with the board to help the co-op’s 20 individual farming businesses — both urban and rural — move their product and grow their sales. YYC Growers is collectively owned by 20 farms growing vegetables with-in and around the city. Member farms have exclusive access to sell their veg-etables through YYC Growers’ Harvest Boxes, a subscription-based fresh-food program that provides weekly deliveries to

drop-off locations around the city. Customers pay before the growing season begins, enabling YYC Growers to assist farmers with upfront costs such as seeds and labour, mitigating the feast-and-famine nature of farming. Currently, YYC Growers distributes enough produce to feed more than 750 families each week throughout the year while paying farmers more for their produce than they’d receive from selling to traditional grocery stores.

Kocher is also committed to educating consumers about how local herbicide- and pesticide-free farming fits into the larger picture of Calgary’s food culture and its many touchpoints, including environmental sustainability, poverty reduction, health and wellness, a vibrant dining scene, a strong food economy and, of course, the connection between health and nutrition ­— especially as it relates to hospital food. —J.H.

Photograph by Jared Sych

An advocate of small-scale agriculture and urban farming, Kye Kocher promotes the sale of locally grown produce while educating Calgarians about the value of local food for overcoming social, physical, economic and environmental health challenges.

Dr. Christy Lane 39 Founder, and Co-CEO, Vivametrica; Associate Professor, Mount Royal University; Visiting Associate Professor, Stanford University WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

Dr. Christy Lane’s research into physical activity, lifestyle medicine and musculoskeletal health combined with her company’s work creating apps for wearable technology are putting Calgary at the forefront of global health technology.




Photograph by Brendan Klem



Dr. Christy Lane was always a closet entrepreneur. But working remotely with collaborators at Stanford helped her realize she could harness her aptitude for business to further her academic research and improve millions of lives. “The Bay Area has a fantastic model of growing ideas within an academic setting and then creating value for that,” Lane says. “We were doing a lot of really exciting research and winning lots of awards, and I started thinking there had to be a way to leverage what we were doing to help a lot more people.” So, in 2013, while pregnant with her first child, Lane created Vivametrica, a health analytics company that creates apps for smartphones and wearable technology to predict mortality and chronic disease risk. No more exams, fluid draws, or lengthy questionnaires: Vivametrica’s apps provide an ever-up-to-date profile of a user’s “digital biomarkers,” providing employers and life insurers with accurate data that steamline underwriting, personalize insurance products and provide engagement tools to customers. Lane’s research has shown that lack of physical activity is four times more predictive of early mortality and certain diseases than smoking — and Vivametrica’s apps also encourage individual health monitoring and behaviour change and get people moving. By the time Vivametrica’s current round of investment closes this year, Lane says it will be a multi-million-dollar company with partnerships across North America and Asia, including millions of users in China. Lane wants it to be the global leader in health analytics by 2028. “The best advice I’ve ever received is to not underestimate myself. To believe in myself, and to say, ‘why not me?’” In addition to myriad awards for her research in data science, exercise physiology and lifestyle P 40 U

“People know they should be active, but the goals they often hear are unrealistic and present an insurmountable challenge. Our tools help them see what they’re doing — and do just a little bit more.”

medicine, Lane is a recipient of Connected World Magazine’s Woman of M2M Award. She’s also on the advisory committee for Neuchâtel Junior College, a private Canadian school in Switzerland, and she’s a founder and faculty advisor for the MRU women’s rugby team and still finds time to volunteer at her daughters’ daycares. In all her roles, she’s a passionate advocate for women and girls in STEM — through formal and informal channels, she has mentored more than 20 girls and women who are interested in clinical research and technology. —M.Czarnecka AvenueCalgary.com


Derek Luk 34 Founder, Mimentra WHY HE’S A TOP 40

Derek Luk founded a start-up to improve employee mental health through app-based and in-person mindfulness training.

Photograph by Brendan Klem








The seed for Derek Luk’s digital mental health start-up was planted back when he was working to help students deal with university stress. As the mental health education coordinator at the University of Calgary Student Union Wellness Centre, Luk dealt with issues such as binge drinking. “We looked at why people get in trouble when they drink, and usually it was because they don’t have any way of coping,” he says. In response, he helped implement mindfulness workshops on campus as a way for students to build resiliency and manage stress without drinking. “Mindfulness” may seem like the buzzword of the moment, but Luk believes it has the potential to improve workplace culture, save businesses money and improve mental health. And he should know — he wrote his master’s of nursing thesis on using mindfulness to prevent burnout in healthcare professionals. In 2014, he founded Mimentra, which offers mindfulness training in both in-person and digital formats to help improve mental health for employees of Mimentra clients. To get his idea off the ground, Luk applied to start-up competitions for funding. “I actually applied for one of them at 3 a.m., sleep deprived, and got in,” he says. In fact, he wound up winning the People’s Choice Award at that 2015 competition, hosted by Startup Calgary. Mimentra also won ATB Boostr’s changemaker competition in 2015 and received a $62,000 Alberta Innovates voucher in 2017 to help develop Mimentra’s mindfulness app. Luk says the key insight that sets Mimentra apart is ensuring benefits are sustainable for its clients. Instead of just running office-mindfulness workshops, Mimentra trains mental health champions within the companies it works with. They in turn use their newly acquired expertise (and eventually Mimentra’s app) to then teach their colleagues mindfulness practices that help reduce stress and improve morale. The app is still in the testing phase, but the company has already provided training to staff at “There are so many things that cause Lethbridge Correctional Services people to have mental suffering and if and the Calgary Police Service. Luk says Mimentra can be espeeven we got maybe 10 or 15 per cent cially beneficial to first responders of what this stuff is, we could reduce and professionals in high-stress environments. “When they change that type of mental distress.” from their uniform into wearing civilian clothes, that’s where they do the [mindfulness] practice, so when they go home they’re more focused on what is present, which is their family, their spouse, their kids,” he says. Improved mental health is obviously good for employees, but Luk believes employers also gain from increased productivity and fewer employees requiring short-term disability. He hopes that win-win will turn Mimentra into a long-term success. —F.M. P 40 U

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For someone who’s in charge of mapping the path forward for Alberta’s energy sector, Jil Macdonald is strangely averse to planning. In fact, the onetime aspiring doctor says she owes her career to her ability to pivot on a dime, which she attributes to her military upbringing. “I grew up all over the country. Maybe that’s why I’m so attuned to change,” she says. P 40 U 40


33 Vice President, Science & Evaluation, Alberta Energy Regulator

The youngest-ever vicepresident at the Alberta Energy Regulator, Jil Macdonald headed the team that oversaw the decommissioning and closure of hundreds of thousands of inactive energy wells. She now leads a team that is planning the safe development and export of Alberta’s remaining coal, natural gas and oil reserves.


Jil Macdonald


How She Came to Work for the Alberta Energy Regulator

After graduating high school in Regina, Macdonald moved to Calgary for university, intent on studying medicine. However, her less-than-stellar chemistry grades prompted her switch to geophysics, which in turn led to a job as a geophysicist with Encana. That was followed by a foray into management consulting with Ernst and Young, and ultimately to her becoming the youngest vice president to be appointed by the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) — the provincial body established in 2013 to oversee safe, environmentally sound production of coal, oil and natural gas reserves. “I didn’t intend for where I am today,” she says. “I kind of just allowed a path to be.” How She’s Setting the Course for Alberta’s Future

Macdonald joined the AER as director of operations in 2014, and was promoted to VP of closure and liability the next year. In that role she led a team of 120 people in overseeing the responsible closure of decommissioned or abandoned energy infrastructure across the province. During her tenure, her team dealt with more than 450,000 oil and natural-gas wells, 430,000 kilometres of pipelines, nearly 800 gas-processing plants and nine oil sands mines. After taking eight months of maternity leave following the birth of her son, Macdonald became the AER’s VP of science and evaluation in October, 2017. In this newly refocused division for the organization, she leads a team of 75 scientists in using sophisticated data analysis and computer modelling to estimate the province’s future energy reserves and create one-, five- and 10-year plans to get these resources to market. Harnessing the Power of Data



When She’s Not at Work

“When I’m at work, I’m at work. But when I’m at home, I’m at home,” says Macdonald. But she still finds time to volunteer as vice chair of the Bridgeland Riverside Community Association, helping to plan spending, as well as rental and operational use of the community hall and support more community events in her neighbourhood. —J.B.

Photograph by Jared Sych

Photographed at the Alberta Energy Regulator offices.

“The biggest misconception is that data is too complex to understand,” says Macdonald. “Data can be really powerful, but you have to use it in the right way.” That means using available information to create plans for government and industry, as well as educating the public about the state of the province’s energy resources. “I think we owe it to the public to be more transparent in what we do.”

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“Good food is a powerful force for greater health, equity and social change, and it is out of reach for far too many Calgarians.”

Renée MacKillop 32 Associate Director of Food and Wellness, The Alex Community Health Centre

Photographed at The Alex Community Food Centre.


Renée MacKillop helped spearhead the campaign to raise $4 million to build the Alex Community Food Centre — a vibrant space where people can access healthy food, build food skills, make new friends and address other health and social-justice issues.


Food Centre and was part of the team that raised $4 million in public and private funding to open the first Community Food Centre (CFC) in Alberta. The Alex CFC is neither a soup kitchen nor a food bank. It is a community hub in Forest Lawn that brings everyone from babies to seniors together to grow, cook and share food. The centre hosts cooking, nutrition, gardening and fitness

classes, provides drop-in meals and runs an affordable produce market. Programs and meals are free and priority is given to people living on low incomes. In 2017, The Alex CFC provided more than 12,000 meals and hosted 352 food program sessions. The centre also runs advocacy and social-justice programs to help people access income assistance and housing support, and in general creates a welcoming environment for

people who have experienced barriers to participating in community. “This is ‘wraparound healthcare,’ that allows people to access healthy food in a space like the community food centre and also receive medical care, social support, wellness programs and skill-building through the Alex Community Health Centre,” says MacKillop. “It makes sense because food and health go hand in hand.” —J.H.

Photograph by Jared Sych







Growing up on a farm just west of High River, Renée MacKillop was used to sitting down to dinner with her family and sharing a healthy meal made from food they had grown themselves. This daily ritual was so commonplace in the fabric of prairie farm life that MacKillop scarcely gave it a second thought. Until she moved to a city — Victoria, B.C. — to study social justice. There, she began to see the devastating, cascading effects food insecurity has on people’s physical and mental health, as well as the health of the community at large, and to understand how this complex picture unfolds in striking simplicity. “I can see all the ways that food is part of the problem. It’s at the heart of some of the really serious problems in the world. But it’s also the solution,” says MacKillop. With this in mind, MacKillop made her way back to Alberta to work on her family farm raising cattle and to work with the City of Calgary to help implement Calgary’s first food strategy from 2010 to 2015. She then joined The Alex as program manager for the P 40 U

Dr. Amy Metcalfe leads novel research that’s improving health and health care for pregnant women and has brought research funding and accolades to the University of Calgary.




37 Assistant Professor, Departments of Community Health Sciences, Medicine and Obstetrics and Gynecology, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary



Dr. Amy Metcalfe

Dr. Amy Metcalfe looks for stories hidden in numbers — patterns or blips in the data collected by a variety of different health agencies that she can use to improve the health of pregnant women and even save their lives. “Sometimes, just looking at the numbers, you choke up a bit. You can see awful things that are happening to people. It motivates me,” says Metcalfe, an epidemiologist and assistant professor at the University of Calgary. Metcalfe conducts research into maternal health with a special focus on pregnant women with chronic diseases like hypertension and diabetes. Pregnant women have been typically excluded from clinical trials, so little evidencebased information exists on how to best care for them. Metcalfe has set out to change that. Her work has earned national and international accolades, bringing in over $2 million in funding. She received a New Investigator Award from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, given to the country’s most promising young scientists, and was the only Canadian selected for the Future Leaders in Health Data Science Programme hosted by the U.K.-based Farr Institute in October, 2017. Her findings have already led to changes in prenatal clinical practice throughout the province, including a decrease in unnecessary tests during pregnancy, a change that saves health-care dollars and spares women from undue stress. The preliminary results of an ongoing study also seem to suggest her findings have led to a reduction in the Caesarean delivery rate in Alberta. “I’m hopeful that the work I do will actually change the way medicine is practiced and give women more information to make better decisions. I’m hoping this will give women real data that they can use to make decisions that are best for them and their families,” says Metcalfe. Metcalfe ended up in Calgary thanks to a poster advertising a free trip to the Rockies, which turned out to be a recruitment campaign for the U of C. At the time, she was finishing her master’s degree in Saskatchewan. She applied, met a team of like-minded researchers, and decided to pursue her PhD in Calgary. Her work isn’t limited to the university; Metcalfe has also worked on programs and research projects for pregnant women at The Alex Community Health Centre and Mosaic Refugee Health Clinic. “We’re working to improve the quality of health care available to all women in Calgary,” she says. —C.Frangou P 40 U


Photograph by Brendan Klem

“In academia there’s more failure than success. People hear a lot about the success, but part of that is putting in multiple applications and being rejected. You learn to develop a thick skin where you can take some of the criticism but also learn how you can apply that to be better.”



Photographed at the YWCA Inglewood show suite at West Canadian Digital Imaging.

Rebecca Morley 38 Corporate Director and Audit Chair, Birchcliff Energy; Past Board Chair, YW Calgary WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

With her financial acumen, drive and community spirit, Rebecca Morley is shaping some of Calgary’s most important organizations, including the new $60 million home of YW Calgary.


“I had a mother who worked very, very hard and so I have always been inspired by her and her commitment to doing what is necessary. I also work hard to better myself, to better my community, to set an example for my children.”

Photograph by Jared Sych







For an indication of Rebecca Morley’s relentless perseverance, consider how she landed her first job after graduating from university on the East Coast. Morley knew she needed to stand apart from the pack of more qualified applicants if she was going to get the job as a research associate with TD Securities. So after her first phone interview she followed up with the hiring director. Religiously. “I called him every week for eight weeks,” she says. “I would have gone anywhere in the world for that job.” Thankfully, it brought Morley back to Calgary, her hometown and a city where the accomplished financial analyst, volunteer board member, athlete and mother of two daughters has put her determination to work in quite literally shaping the city. Case in point: the new $60 million YW Calgary building currently under construction in Inglewood and which came about under Morley’s leadership as chair of the YW Calgary board from 2016 to June 2018. The project began in 2012, around the time Morley joined the board as a member. During her tenure she was closely involved with the sale of the YW’s downtown site, one of the largest land transactions in Calgary’s recent history, and helped to successfully lobby municipal, provincial and federal governments for project funding. The YW Hub will open next spring and will eventually provide homes for 100 vulnerable women and 90 childcare spaces as well as counselling services, a gym and community kitchen. The project, completed by an all-female board, executive and architecture firm, will also be left with operational funding projected at more than $25 million. It is a significant first for Calgary, Morley says. “It’s a great message to men and women in Calgary about the things that can be accomplished when we get together,” she says. It’s an even bigger feat considering Morley managed to pull it off while also acting as audit committee chair for Birchcliff Energy Ltd., parenting two active daughters — both ski racers — and training for Ironman Canada, which she completed for the first time this past summer despite being hit with two flat tires during the cycling portion of the race and record-breaking heat. “It didn’t unfold exactly how I imagined,” she says, “but it was magical.” Morely also sits on the board of WinSport and in January will start a new career in management consulting with McKinsey. She is quick to point out her accomplishments didn’t come without help and advice along the way. “It’s okay not to know what you’re doing all the time,” she says. “And it’s okay to ask for help.” Just don’t let that get in the way of putting yourself out there. “You’ve got to put your hand up,” she says. “Sometimes you get picked.” —J.B. P 40 U

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36 Director of Operations, Teatro Group WHY HE’S A TOP 40

Devin Morrison is a former pro skateboarder who parlayed a job cleaning the boiler room into a 17-year career with the Teatro Group that currently has him overseeing all aspects of its seven restaurants.







What do pro skateboarding and fine dining have in common? In Calgary, the answer is Devin Morrison. Though Morrison’s two pursuits might seem at odds, scratch a little deeper and you can see how both demand similar qualities to succeed: resiliency, agility and determination, be it in mastering a kickflip-backsidetailslide or convincing someone to hire you. P 40 U


“I was 18 and I walked into Teatro to ask for a job. The GM said ‘no, we don’t have a job for you.’ I came back the next day, and the next day, and the next, saying, ‘I’ll do anything.’ Finally, she said, ‘okay, you can clean the boiler room.’ I cleaned the boiler room every day for a week, leaving covered in dirt and dust, but I didn’t care,” says Morrison, describing his start at Teatro in 2001. He steadily moved up the ranks, from dishwasher to server assistant, bartender to server, then manager, all while continuing to travel the world as a competitive skateboarder, even landing the cover of Transworld Skateboarding magazine in 2004. Morrison was promoted to general manager in 2008, around the time Teatro Group president and CEO Dario Berloni was contemplating opening what is now Vendome Café. Morrison loved the idea and told Berloni they should go for it. A new business, a new team and a new brand, under the mentorship and bold expectations of Berloni, were huge steps for Morrison, who

Photographed on the Teatro rooftop.

has no formal business education. In 2012, the Teatro Group opened Cucina and Morrison was made director of operations. That move put him at the helm to open the group’s next expansions: E.A.T., Capuccini Café, Alforno Bakery & Café and Royale. New business development, project management, contract negotiations, budgets, menu consultation, concept design and marketing all fall under Morrison’s charge now, while managing a staff of 230 employees across all the properties. Morrison has hosted President Bill Clinton and looked on while architect Santiago Calatrava sketched out his vision for the Peace Bridge on a napkin while dining with thenmayor Dave Bronconnier. When he’s not hosting international dignitaries or envisioning what the Teatro Group will open next, Morrison donates his time and money to the skateboard community through Skatelife, which helps Dalhousie Church host skateboarding nights, and to The Compound, the only permanent indoor skateboard facility in Calgary. In his downtime, he can be found skating around the New Central Library with his 14year-old daughter, teaching her all his tricks, and skating mini ramps and local skateparks with friends. —J.H.

Photograph by Jared Sych

Devin Morrison

“I’d go to work and do my best prim and proper and learn about service standards and etiquette and food and wine. Then I’d clock out and be chased around by security guards for skateboarding on the streets. It was always a pretty funny shift. It was awesome.”




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Corinne Ofstie 35 Strategic Initiatives Coordinator, Association of Alberta Sexual Assault Services WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

Tirelessly working toward an Alberta that’s free of sexual violence, Corinne Ofstie is a creative, collaborative and supportive team player who embodies the concept of service leadership.



Making an Impact

The team at AASAS works collaboratively and Ofstie feels hesitant to claim credit for any of the initiatives. Nevertheless, she led the development of the first-responder training program from 2014 to 2016. She was part of the team that spearheaded #IBelieveYou, which started as an annual AASAS campaign but was also taken up by the #MeToo movement, gaining an overall social media reach of 40 million in 2017. Ofstie also contributed to developing the business case and advocacy efforts that helped secure $8.1 million in new funding to sexual assault services in the province.



Creating Positive Change

“Even though you are interacting with people’s trauma, you are also supporting traumatic growth. I see so much positive change at the level that I’m working. And it matters, and so I love it,” says Ofstie. In addition to her role with AASAS, Ofstie is a member of the provincial Sexual Violence Police Advisory Committee and the Expert Advisory Panel for the Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice and Accountability and the advisory committee for the review of sexual assault files for the Calgary Police Service. Leading by Bringing Out the Best in Others

As AASAS’s project coordinator for the Status of Women Canada-funded initiative, “Improving and Enhancing the Criminal Justice Response to Adult Survivors of Sexual Assault,” Ofstie helps coordinate the efforts of municipal and RCMP police services, the Alberta Crown Prosecution Service, Alberta Justice Victim Services and Alberta Health, among other agencies. “I have a servant leadership perspective — I get intrinsic value from being part of leading movements,” she says. “I lead from behind and I bring things together. I approach experts with servant leadership, bringing out the best in them and then I’m part of what we accomplish together.” Serving the Community

As a former board member of the Cliff Bungalow-Mission Community Association, Ofstie was part of a group that received the Toole Peet Community Hero Award for her volunteer support and coordination work during the 2013 flood. She also runs the Twitter account for the Ending Violence Association of Canada, and is part of the Gender Equality Network, a group of almost 150 women leaders advocating for equality convened by the Canadian Women’s Foundation. —M.Czarnecka

Photograph by Brendan Klem




Through her role with the Association of Alberta Sexual Assault Services (AASAS), Corinne Ofstie works with community, justice and government organizations to end sexual violence. “Sexual violence is prevalent across all communities and we are all impacted by it,” she says. “There are no simple solutions, but by working together we can affect change.” P 40 U

Claire O’Gorman 32 Program Coordinator, Safeworks WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

A tireless advocate for vulnerable populations, Claire O’Gorman has been instrumental in increasing access to harm-reduction services in the city, including leading the creation and operation of Alberta’s first supervised drug-consumption site.




Photograph by Jared Sych



Claire O’Gorman was living out her childhood dream, working as an acute-care nurse in Vancouver when her ideas on health and needs began to change. “I loved working with families to address their immediate needs, but then we would send them back to communities or homes where their social needs weren’t being met,” says the born-and-raised Calgarian. “Our health interventions weren’t going to be sustainable for them.” So O’Gorman took a chance: she scaled back her work to get a master’s in public health. Today, O’Gorman is the program coordinator at Safeworks, which operates Calgary’s supervised drug-consumption site (the first in Alberta) as well as a needle exchange, and other harm-reduction programs for drug users. When she returned to Calgary in 2014, O’Gorman took a leadership role in organizing the response to the crystal meth and opioid crisis and in creating Safeworks, which started in 2015. Safeworks’ supervised consumption site opened in a temporary trailer space outside of the Sheldon Chumir Health Centre in October 2017 and moved into a permanent location in the centre in January of this year. Since it first opened, the site has had more than 27,000 client visits — more than 22,300 involving drug consumption. As of last July, staff had responded to 446 overdoses — lives that otherwise may have been lost. O’Gorman’s work is informed by the concept of harm reduction. It’s an approach intended to reduce the risks associated with drugs for people who are unable or unwilling to stop using. “When you dig deeper into some of our clients’ stories, you see that it’s actually quite a social failure — that as a community we didn’t care for someone or didn’t offer a service or didn’t provide something in an equitable and inclusive way,” she says. O’Gorman oversees the day-to-day operation of the consumption site, the outreach team and needle distribution programs, and she works with government representatives, as well as community and business associations. As co-chair of P 40 U

Photographed at the Sheldon Chumir Health Centre.

“What’s made me successful is listening to my patients, to people with lived experience, to learn from their family members, their communities, and really hold that as a form of expertise.”

the Calgary Coalition on Supervised Consumption, O’Gorman helped lead a large local study of people who use drugs; the results will help establish future programs for vulnerable populations. As Safeworks’ program coordinator, she has become the public face for the often-controversial supervised consumption site and for harm reduction more generally. It’s a role she’s well prepared for. “There’s a misperception that harm-reduction work and things like supervised consumption and needle distribution enable drug use or entrench people in addictive patterns. In fact, it does quite the opposite. It brings people into services, and helps them access health-care providers and socialservice providers.” —C.Frangou AvenueCalgary.com


Kerry Lynn Okita 37 Partner, Bishop & McKenzie LLP WHY SHE’S A TOP 40 An advocate for human rights everywhere, Kerry Lynn Okita has fought meaningful legal battles in Afghanistan, Tanzania and right here at home.




Kerry Lynn Okita’s interest in international politics and law started at home when she was trying to make sense of the first Gulf War as a fourth grader. “I had a scrapbook newspaper of the war, trying to understand what was happening,” she says. “I’d watch the news with my dad every night. How we would talk about it in our family made it interesting and something I wanted to engage in and help.” That desire to effect change stayed with her into adulthood and has seen her fight for women’s rights locally and internationally, work with the UN and resolve immigration issues for her clients. P 40 U 40


“If you’re enjoying what you’re doing, it doesn't feel like work. It just feels like hanging out with people and hearing their stories, that’s sort of what I do. For most of my experiences I’m certain I got a hell of a lot more out of it then what I gave.”

Fighting for Women’s Rights in Africa

In 2010, Okita took a job with the Women’s Legal Aid Centre in Tanzania, researching and preparing submissions with local lawyers to challenge constitutional laws that prevented women from owning property. Okita was part of a team that handled a case where two women were forced from their homes after their husbands died. Although the law wasn’t changed, Okita felt she helped move things forward. “You feel like you got punched in the gut, but then you realize that maybe the main value wasn’t overturning that law,” she says. “It’s in having these women know that people were fighting for them, and that their situation was important.” Working with the UN in Afghanistan

In 2011, Okita worked for the UN’s office of legal affairs in Afghanistan, and as legal officer and secretariat of the UNAMA Human Rights Task Force. Her work included negotiating the release of UN staff detained by national and international forces, reviewing and investigating fatal attacks against the UN, and developing legal strategy and policy allowing private contractors providing security to do things like import arms into conflict zones under sanction.

Since returning to Calgary in 2012, Okita has built an employment and immigration office at Bishop & McKenzie LLP and helped numerous families with immigration issues. When one family of clients lost its permanent residency status, putting its young daughter in danger of undergoing female genital mutilation in their African home country, Okita was able to successfully argue to reinstate their residency status. Helping Women Here at Home

Since 2006, Okita has volunteered for the Women’s Centre of Calgary, sitting on the board of directors for two terms, twice serving as board co-chair. She has worked on several committees, provided legal services to women seeking advice at the centre’s legal clinic and acted as a “living library book” for its leadership program. —A.G. 76


Photograph by Brendan Klem

Improving Lives Through Her Immigration Law Practice

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Peter Oliver has lived in Calgary since he was a kid and is a committed community volunteer, but he doesn’t have the rosy view of his childhood community you might imagine. He describes life in suburban Calgary back then as an isolating experience. “It was very inefficient to walk or bike around and there seemed to be this really antisocial behaviour that existed there,” he says. “People sort of drove home and rolled up their driveway and shut the garage door behind them.” But rather than follow his dream of living in a more connected and vibrant city to some far off locale, Oliver decided to stay and create that dream right here in Calgary. P 40 U 40


He’s Connected the Core

Peter Oliver 36 Co-founder, Beltline Neighbourhoods Association; Lead Product Design Engineer, General Dynamics Mission Systems — Canada 78


“When we see the results of some of the things we do — the shows that are happening at McHugh House; the different people on bikes in the Beltline now that never would have been riding a bike five years ago — being able to see the fruits of all of this is what inspires me to continue doing this work.” WHY HE’S A TOP 40

From cycle tracks to secondary suites to rapid transit downtown, Peter Oliver is leading the charge for a more connected Calgary by helping organize others to advocate for the city they want, too.

He Took on the NIMBYs and Won

Getting all those urban projects off the ground has come with thousands of volunteer hours, but more importantly being a voice for positive change against the NIMBY forces Oliver says are actually a vocal minority. “What we found was once we put our names out there and stuck our neck out, all these other people just came out of the woodwork and were in support of it all,” he says. “You just needed someone to lead the marching band.” When He’s Not Leading the Marching Band

Oliver’s no slouch at work, either. His day job involves developing custom communications and networking equipment for the Canadian and British militaries. And he hosts the Palgary Almanac radio show on CJSW every other Thursday morning. —J.B.

Photograph by Jared Sych

Photographed at McHugh House.

Since trading the suburbs for a home in the Beltline, Oliver has dedicated much of his time to advocating for urban development projects. He is a co-founder of several of the community advocacy groups that were the driving force behind city council’s approval of the 6.5-kilometre downtown cycle track, the bus rapid transit line, removing red tape for secondary suites and running the Green Line LRT as a subway along 12th Avenue. Each of these initiatives represents a significant move for the development of the city. Oliver was also one of the founders of the Beltline Neighbourhoods Association, the group responsible for the Beltline Urban Murals Project and the Beltline Bonspiel, two new local community festivals.

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Allison Onyett 32 Marketing Director, The CORE Shopping Centre WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

Allison Onyett’s innovative marketing campaigns have attracted more people to the CORE Shopping Centre, turning a downtown mall into a community hub.


“The hardest lesson I have ever learned is to be patient. I am still learning that lesson every day.” the Christmas season. About half of CORE retailers reported an increase in sales last year over the previous year. Onyett’s stats show that more people and, importantly, more families visited the CORE in the last two years, after a marked decline in 2015 and 2016 as office tower vacancy rates hit an all-time high. Onyett credits her success to three things: the support of

Photographed at the CORE Shopping Centre.

her employers, an abundance of enthusiasm and her ability to function on little sleep. “I’m a bit of a night owl, so I’m more likely to stay at the office as late as humanly possible versus be the first one in,” she says. With her husband Randy Witty and their friend Matthew Wilson, Onyett helped launch BeerGuysYYC, a group that promotes local craft beer and organizes YYC Beer Week. She

also volunteers with multiple local organizations, including the Calgary Downtown Association, the Hong Kong Calgary Business Association and the Sarah Faith Hogan Memorial Foundation. “My professors in university told me to get involved, get your name out there, volunteer, make connections,” she says. “That was really powerful advice.” —C.Frangou

Photograph by Jared Sych







When Santa Claus finds his way to downtown Calgary next month, Allison Onyett will be top of his “nice” list. Onyett, marketing director for the CORE Shopping Centre, is the mastermind behind the downtown shopping centre’s Christmas campaign — and its Easter Egg Hunt, Chinese New Year shopping parties and free fitness classes, along with about 175 other events put on by the CORE last year. And all of it was accomplished by Onyett and her one employee. “It’s important to me to make Calgary’s downtown a place that people are drawn to, to enjoy,” says Onyett. “I want to create a shopping centre that’s more than a shopping centre. I want it to be a community hub, a gathering place.” Since Onyett stepped into her role in 2016, she has overseen a campaign to draw more people into the CORE, the downtown shopping centre that includes Holt Renfrew, TD Square and Simons and is managed by Cushman & Wakefield Asset Services. “I want the CORE to be thought of as a hub of activity, bustling with events that create community and showcase amazing arts and attractions, in addition to incredible retail,” she says. Weekend traffic, long the biggest challenge for the downtown centre, rose by 8.8 per cent in 2017 and about 15 per cent over P 40 U

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Save now, pay dearly later DENTAL TOURISM: Discount treatment can be costly The complications created by substandard dental implant treatment and lack of follow-up may last a lifetime. Dental implant therapy is a popular tooth replacement procedure, and individuals are drawn to tourist destinations by the lure of low-cost dental work. While the price tag may be appealing, going abroad for complex dentistry is risky. Problems created by dental tourism are rising dramatically. Patients seeking care while on vacation are often returning with loose implants, jawbone and gum infection, sinus problems, nerve and bone damage and poor esthetic results. Low treatment costs abroad are associated with generic, inferior-quality parts, resulting in poor fit, loosening or break-

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37 Founder and CEO, Parker PR







Ellen Parker’s firm Parker PR has organized events such as Kensington’s Diagon Alley (now Fantasy Faire). She’s passionate about giving back and helping to connect people, businesses and communities in like-minded collaborations.

In 2016, Kensington was happily caught offguard when between 40,000 and 60,000 people showed up to the neighbourhood’s Diagon Alley event. Stores overflowed with customers and the roads had to be closed off due to the high volume of Harry Potter enthusiasts taking over the area. It was one of the biggest successes for Ellen Parker and her marketing and events firm Parker PR. P 40 U



Photograph by Jared Sych

Ellen Parker

Philharmonic Orchestra, Alberta College of Art + Design (ACAD) and many others. When Parker starts working with a client, she often looks for ways her firm can positively impact the community while simultaneously benefitting the business. An example of this is the relationship between the ATB branch on 8th Avenue downtown and ACAD. The bank’s plans didn’t meet the Stephen Avenue streetscape requirements set by the Downtown BRZ, and Parker proposed that the bank use part of the space as a gallery to showcase a rotating roster of art from the college. The bank was able to open, artists from ACAD now have a new venue to promote their work and the downtown streetscape increased its dynamic offerings. That win-win-win is emblematic of Parker’s approach. She doesn’t just work for her clients, she works to connect them with other businesses. She often plays matchmaker for businesses and organizations that she feels would work well together, and seeing Photographed at those relationships grow is the Masters Gallery. part of her business that she feels the most “Choosing to work strongly about. “I’ve with people that we seen so many differpeople that I’ve align with is an im- ent connected working portant quality to be together now,” says “It’s almost like successful, to make Parker. ‘Okay, my work is done sure it’s a win-win.” here.’” Parker takes on one pro-bono client each year — for 2018, it was the Brenda Stafford women’s shelter — helping with communication needs such as social media, media relations and event plan– ning, and connecting the organization to surrounding businesses. Parker connected the Brenda Stafford organization with SwizzleSticks SalonSpa, another one of her clients, which now offers women at “We were expecting maybe the shelter complimentary haircuts 4,000,” says Parker. “It was a little crazy.” Since then, the event has been and makeup to help prepare for transformed into Fantasy Faire to ac- job interviews. Parker believes that thoughtful commodate fantasy enthusiasts of all philanthropy is a smart business stripes, bringing even larger crowds and more business to the Kensington decision that can have a positive Business Revitalization Zone (BRZ). impact on the community and the bottom line. “I think everyone Since opening four years ago, should give back,” she says. “It Parker has grown her boutique firm to seven full-time employees. Along should be something we bring our children up to aspire to do.” with the Kensington BRZ, Parker —M.Coyte PR’s clients include the Calgary


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Ryan Roberts 39 Senior Vice President, Water Project Delivery, Stantec


Ryan Roberts leads a team of 2,200 employees working on hundreds of projects a year to keep clean water running in communities across North America.




Ryan Roberts knows what he doesn’t know, and is willing to admit it. Far from holding his career back, that transparency has helped him succeed. Today he is a senior vice-president in charge of project delivery for Stantec’s sprawling North American water business, but when he first interviewed for an engineering job with the firm 17 years ago, he told interviewers he didn’t know much about water. But Roberts conveyed such an eagerness to learn that he still got the job. Since then, he has climbed the ladder at the global consulting company and now leads a division with 2,200 employees working on hundreds of projects each year. P 40 U



Weathering a Water Crisis

Inspiring the Next Generation

Roberts says the importance of his work is part of what has kept him at Stantec rather than switching to the better paying oil-and-gas industry. “There’s not an endless amount of water — we basically have the same amount of water today as we did billions of years ago,” says Roberts. “The way we use it, and the way we process it, 84


and the methods that allow you to process it with less energy and less water wastage have become extremely important.” This belief in what he does is also why Roberts speaks at schools and universities on his own time to encourage students to consider water as a career path. “[There’s] the pride in what you’re doing for your community, and trying to maintain that type of perspective with people, so that we actually get that draw into this industry, is critical,” says Roberts. Supporting Diversity

Roberts also works to help improve Stantec from within. This spring he was asked to be the executive sponsor for Stantec’s Southern Alberta LGBTQ resource group, which focuses on diversity and inclusion in the workplace. The group has hosted information sessions, fundraisers and had a float in this year’s Calgary Pride Parade. “It means making sure that everyone is 100 per cent comfortable, that they can come to work and be totally themselves every day,” says Roberts. “I’ll be honest, when I first got involved with this, I didn’t realize the extent that that wasn’t the case.”—F.M.

Photographed at the Bonnybrook Wastewater Treatment Plant. Photograph by Jared Sych

Between a growing population, Alberta’s dry climate and the impacts of climate change, the question of how we use water is taking on added urgency. “We’re definitely into a kind of age here where it’s a water crisis,” says Roberts. “Either there’s too much, there’s not enough or it’s not in the right place.” Calgary’s 2013 flood is one example of this. The event left much of the city’s crucial Bonnybrook Wastewater Treatment Plant, which treats 950,000 people’s sewage, flooded. For the following six weeks an on-site trailer became Roberts’ office as he supported the recovery, and he and his crew worked long hours to get the plant fully operational again. Never once did the City have to order a boil-water advisory or tell Calgarians to stop using tap water.

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He performs intricate surgeries and creates technology seemingly out of the future, but for neurosurgery resident Won Hyung (Andrew) Ryu, the act that demands the utmost attention is the moment he meets a patient for the first time. “I talk about brain tumours every day, but for that patient, for that family, it might be the most life-altering, defining moment of their life,” he says. P 40 U 40


He Prioritizes the Emotional Well-being of his Patients

Dr. Ryu, who was born in South Korea and learned English as a second language, says he worked hard at developing an empathetic, engaging bedside manner, calling it a skill set as important as surgical technique. “What patients get out of that interaction is not the technical nuance of what I do, but an emotional experience. They’re scared, they’re worried. It’s important how I choose my words, my tone, and that I reassure them that this is the beginning of an ongoing relationship.” He’s Changed Treatment for People with Pituitary Tumours in Alberta

Through his work with PITNET, a multidisciplinary team dedicated to the treatment of pituitary tumours, Ryu has found ways to help surgeons identify patients at risk for vision loss from their tumours and predict whether these patients will recover after surgery. Ryu’s findings have changed treatment strategies and are now part of clinical guidelines used throughout the province. Ryu, who regularly puts in 80-hour workweeks as a chief resident, has been recognized by top neurosurgical societies in Canada and the United States for this work. He’s Using Virtual Reality to Make Neurosurgery Safer

Ryu also helped develop the ReflectiveSpineVR system, a virtual-reality simulator that can assist neurosurgeons in planning and practicing their operations, using a patient’s unique anatomy and illness. A patient’s medical images are loaded into a virtual environment where surgeons can rehearse their operations. While the ReflectiveSpineVR system is still in a development phase, Ryu and the other creators hope this system will eventually be used by neurosurgical trainees across Canada to practice various procedures.

Dr. Won Hyung (Andrew) Ryu 36 Researcher and Chief Resident in Neurosurgery, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary 86



Dr. Won Hyung (Andrew) Ryu is a resident physician in neurosurgery and a researcher and innovator whose work is changing clinical practice guidelines for neurosurgeons and might change the way surgeons prep for surgery.

He’s a Talented Visual Artist

Ryu moved to Canada as a child and showed early talent in visual arts. He auditioned for and was accepted to an elite arts high school in Toronto where he specialized in painting. But he never considered art as a career. He wanted to study science, provided it would give him room to create and innovate. Neurosurgery fit those criteria. “Photography, painting are in some sense similar to when I’m trying to develop a new technology for surgery,” he says. “It’s tapping at my right hemisphere of the brain.” —C.Frangou

Photograph by Jared Sych

Photographed at the Health Research Innovation Centre, University of Calgary Foothills Campus.

Dr. Tolulope Sajobi 38 Statistics Lead, O’Brien Institute for Public Health; Assistant Professor of Biostatistics, Departments of Community Health Sciences and Clinical Neurosciences, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary WHY HE IS A TOP 40

Dr. Tolulope Sajobi has helped secure more than $12 million in research funding for clinical trials and epidemiological studies and is raising the bar internationally in how medical research projects are conducted by helping researchers make sense of the data that is reported by patients.




Dr. Tolulope Sajobi is no stranger to academic accomplishments. But it wasn’t always like that. Growing up in Nigeria, Sajobi’s dad, a math teacher, was so upset by Sajobi’s “average” grades that he cut back on his work to tutor his own son. “I’m forever grateful to him because that’s when I started becoming a good student,” says Sajobi. P 40 U 40


Why His Job Is Important

Sajobi’s statistical talents could be applied to a range of fields, but armed with a PhD in biostatistics, Sajobi helps give patients a voice in medical research. “An analogy I like to give is that in business the customer is always right, but medicine is just beginning to see it that way,” he says. Sajobi and his team have developed tools to accurately analyze data from reports provided by the patients themselves, which are often complex and subjective. His tools help researchers make sense of this new kind of data, opening doors to new health-care knowledge. Data-driven Results

Sajobi led the research design and analysis of the data obtained for the University of Calgary’s Hotchkiss Brain Institute ESCAPE Trial. The study included 22 testing sites worldwide and showed that endovascular treatment can drastically improve the condition of those who have suffered an acute ischemic stroke. He is also statistics lead at the methodology centre in the O’Brien Institute for Public Health, where he develops methods for accurately analyzing largescale health-care data, leading to better, more accurate results.

Photograph by Brendan Klem

By the Numbers

Beyond helping secure more than $12 million in funding and leading a wide range of research projects, Sajobi has authored more than 90 publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals in the last five years. His work has been cited in scholarly research more than 3,000 times. Sajobi was also the first international student at the University of Saskatchewan, where he completed his PhD, to receive the Vanier graduate scholarship, worth $50,000 per year for three years. When He’s Not at Work

Growing up, Sajobi was the assistant master for his church choir and now he regularly volunteers at church as a mentor to younger kids. “It’s a way to impact people’s lives,” he says. “You don’t have to go to church to do that, but for me that’s a way to encourage and guide young people.” —T.S.

“No matter how much success you think you’re having, if you don’t have a base of relationships or happiness with your family and friends, you’re building a house with no foundation.”

Dr. Prism Schneider 38 Orthopedic Trauma Surgeon and Assistant Professor, Carrie Bruno Departments of Surgery and Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

One of only a few female orthopedic trauma surgeons in Canada, Dr. Prism Schneider is leading groundbreaking research that is changing surgical practice, improving patient outcomes and that could save thousands of lives.


“I am inspired to challenge dogmatic teaching and to strive to improve patient outcomes on an individual basis.”

Photograph by Brendan Klem







Dr. Prism Schneider wakes at 4:45 a.m. most days and preps herself for what’s ahead — providing emergency surgical care for injured patients at one of Canada’s busiest trauma centres. Contrary to what you might think, she says she tries not to be hopeful. “I’ve been advised to never be a hopeful surgeon,” she says. “I’m much more prone to planning, executing and achieving success that way.” Schneider honed her preparation strategy as a competitive ski racer. Just as she mentally rehearsed every stage of her races, she now runs through each step of a surgery and all possible scenarios she might encounter before she steps into the operating room. Schneider is one of fewer than 10 female academic orthopedic trauma surgeons in Canada, and standing just over five feet tall, she may be the smallest orthopedic surgeon in the country. “I think as a very petite female, I’ve been underestimated for most of my life and I’ve chosen to take that as a challenge. It has really fuelled my drive to be successful academically as well as surgically,” she says. Although most operating rooms are designed for surgeons far taller than Schneider, she uses her training in biomechanics to find approaches that work to her advantage, adjusting how she positions herself, a patient or equipment. Since returning to Alberta in 2015 following fellowships in Montreal and Houston, Schneider has helped attract more than $4 million for research and her work has implications for trauma patients around the world. She co-authored three of the top 15 papers published in her field last year, according to the 2017 Orthopaedic Trauma Association meeting. She currently heads a project researching how to prevent fatal blood clots from forming after someone is injured, which could save untold numbers of lives. Pulmonary embolism, a clot that travels from the legs to the lungs, is a leading cause of preventable hospital death and death of mothers at the time of childbirth. Schneider also co-leads a national project training surgeons and support staff to recognize people who may be victims of intimate partner violence. “We are seeing an increasing number of injuries due to household violence here in Calgary,” she says. Schneider’s partner, Dr. Paul Cantle is also a trauma surgeon and as doctors who deal mainly with healthy patients who’ve been in traumatic accidents, Schneider says they’ve learned from the patients they care for. “For both of us, our greatest lesson is that love, family and wellness are paramount,” she says. “Each of us needs to value absolutely every day that we have.” —C.Frangou P 40 U

Coming soon . . .




Jason is right where a leader belongs. In the classroom. Events Management instructor Jason Kingsley is changing lives and strengthening communities inside the classroom and around the province. Whether he’s busy helping learners pivot to their next career or goal, or advocating for the LGTBQ community as President of Calgary Pride, we’re extremely proud to have him as part of our accomplished Bow Valley College faculty leadership. Congratulations to Jason and all of this year’s Top 40 Under 40 Winners.




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The author and multidisciplinary artist Vivek Shraya has graced The Globe and Mail’s 2018 Best Dressed list, the cover of literary magazine Quill & Quire and was the recent subject of vanityfair.com’s “In Conversation” column, which deemed her artistic output “cultural rocket fuel.” Last year, she decamped from Toronto to join the University of Calgary’s English department, where she has already made a big impact. NDER


37 Author, Artist, Musician; Assistant Professor, Department of English, Faculty of Arts, University of Calgary


Vivek Shraya

Vivek Shraya has made waves in academia by creating a course that focuses on writers of colour. She is the author of six books, as well as the head of a new publishing imprint designed to launch young and racially diverse authors.

She’s Creating Visibility for Queer Writers and Writers of Colour in Academia

Shraya, who is of Indian descent and identifies as transgender, made her U of C teaching debut this past January with a course on science fiction by Indigenous writers and writers of colour. “When I posted my outline [on Twitter] with the readings that we were going to do in my class, it went viral,” Shraya says. “I think there’s a desire in this city for new perspectives, diverse perspectives, and certainly that’s being reflected in the institution and the university.” She Has Published Six Books

Shraya’s literary oeuvre includes novels, poetry and a new non-fiction book (I’m Afraid of Men). Her work has received numerous accolades: her debut novel She of the Mountains was named one of the best books of 2014 by The Globe and Mail, Maisonneuve and the Edmonton Journal, and her poetry collection even this page is white was named one of the best books of 2016 by CBC Books, The Walrus and the Writers’ Trust of Canada. She Has Her Own Publishing Imprint to Help Launch Young Writers

Her Visual Art Garners Major Buzz



Shraya is also a recording artist, a filmmaker and a visual artist. Her photography exhibition “Trisha” (the name Shraya would have been given had she been assigned female at birth), in which she recreates vintage snapshots of her mother, had showings last summer at the Ace Hotel in New York and at the Portland Art Museum. —S.A.

Photograph by Brendan Klem

As someone whose youth was marred by bullying, racism and homophobia, Shraya puts a high priority on youth mentorship. To help emerging writers and writers of colour get published, Shraya teamed with one of her own publishers, Arsenal Pulp Press, to create a publishing imprint, V.S. Books, which will see its first release next spring. “The hope is to continue to discover and support more emerging writers of colour in Canada,” Shraya says. “Breaking into the literary industry, it’s having that first book that makes a huge difference.”

Preschool – Grade 6 MSofC.com



Jake Stika 30 Executive Director and Co-founder, Next Gen Men WHY HE’S A TOP 40

Jake Stika has created a non-profit that is disrupting toxic takes on gender roles, expectations and limitations through education, engagement and advocacy.


Photograph by Brendan Klem







Jake Stika did not set out to change the world, but when a bout of severe depression deconstructed his life, the six-foot-eight-inch former basketball player discovered that his own recovery was just the first step in spearheading some desperately needed social change. Now, as the co-founder and executive director of Next Gen Men, he builds better men — and thus a better world — through peer engagement, education and empowerment. Formed in November 2014 by Stika, Jermal Alleyne and Jason Tan de Bibiana, Next Gen Men started with a two-school pilot program funded by a grant from the Movember Foundation’s first Canadian Men’s Health and Wellbeing Innovation Challenge that provided $75,000 for each of its first two years. Now it has grown into a platform that delivers community programs and workshops in Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, Toronto and New York, and after-school programs in 15 schools in Toronto. Stika has been instrumental in raising more than $710,000 for Next Gen Men since its inception, using the funds to reach 135 young men through the group’s school programs and another 600-plus through one-time workshops or presentations. Next Gen Men programs promote healthy masculinities and gender equity by educating participants on healthy relationships, violence prevention and consent, gender roles and stereotypes, mental health and peer support. “We’re offering the kind of programs that I would have greatly benefitted from as a kid,” he says. Stika is also committed to bringing these same tools to adults through Equity Leaders, an initiative of Next Gen Men that provides programs and presentations, and has worked with PwC, Deloitte, Shell, the City of Calgary, DisruptHR and the University of Calgary. These professional development programs help people already in leadership roles learn how to help shift their workplaces forward in terms of gender equity. For Stika and Next Gen, the goal is simply to create more space for conversations men don’t traditionally have. As Stika says, “By creating space for conversations with men and boys around gender, we work to improve men’s health and well-being, reduce all forms of violence and promote gender equity.” —M.Czarnecka P 40 U

WHERE DOES SUCCESS BEGIN? If we’re lucky, with the people who surround us. They inspire us, challenge us and expand our perspectives. This year, like most years, many of the Top 40 Under 40 honorees are part of the University of Calgary family. They bring innovation, entrepreneurial thinking and creativity to everything they do — and make our city and our planet a better place. Our warm congratulations to all of them.

The University of Calgary is a global intellectual hub located in Canada’s most enterprising city. In this spirited, high-quality learning environment, students will thrive in programs made rich by research, hands-on experiences and entrepreneurial thinking. By 2022, we will be recognized as one of Canada’s top five research universities, fully engaging the communities we both serve and lead. Our strategy is called Eyes High, inspired by the university’s Gaelic motto, which translates as ‘I will lift up my eyes.’ AvenueCalgary.com


Amanda Rae Storteboom 32 Former Director, Integration and Special Projects, CUPS Health Education and Housing WHY SHE’S A TOP 40

Amanda Rae Storteboom has been instrumental in helping CUPS grow from having $10 million in annual operating funds to $17 million and has been a champion of using brain science to inform the work being done there.



Photograph by Jared Sych




“The hardest lesson I’ve learned is that what you think is helpful for someone might not be helpful for them.”

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Behind the scenes at CUPS Health Education and Housing, Amanda Rae Storteboom (who moved to Toronto this fall after this story was written) worked to create efficiencies and remove organizational barriers so that staff can more effectively help end the cycle of poverty and trauma. Over her seven years with the non-profit, Storteboom held several roles and was instrumental in making the organization more efficient and professional — all with the aim of better meeting its goals. CUPS (Calgary Urban Project Society) started in 1989 as a medical and referral program that helped connect Calgarians-in-need to services. While its evolution from a grassroots non-profit into the multimillion-dollar budget organization that it is today started before Storteboom began working at CUPS, she was a cornerstone of its recent development and growth. In collaboration with others on the senior team, Storteboom developed the CUPS Strategic Plan for 2016 to 2021, which resulted in a $1 million grant to fund its implementation. CUPS also increased its annual operating budget from $10 million to $17 million, in part as a result of operating efficiencies Storteboom created. One example of this is how Storteboom redeveloped and simplified the intake process for new clients from 13 points of entry and multiple procedures to one access point and one process. Storteboom also helped develop and lead the implementation of the CUPS Resiliency Matrix — an organizational tool that tracks how well the group is achieving its vision statement across all of its services and interventions. The matrix received a gold-star rating from researchers at the University of Calgary for its reliability and also earned CUPS the United Way Social Innovation Award. In developing the matrix, Storteboom and her colleagues used brain research from Harvard University researchers to inform their work, and Storteboom has spoken at national and international events about how brain science improves the work CUPS is doing. As a result of Storteboom and others’ commitment to this innovative science, CUPS was awarded the Change in Mind project, a two-year collaboration with 15 other organizations around the world that examines their experiences applying brain science to help shift policies and systems. For Storteboom, the science of the brain is a doorway into a greater understanding of how we relate to each other. “Hurting happens in the context of relationships. Healing happens in the context of relationships,” she says. “It’s all relationship-based; it’s all about people.” —C.Freudenthaler 20


Photographed at CUPS Calgary.

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Su Ying Strang 30 Executive Director, The New Gallery

“If there is an opportunity to work on something that is aligned with my values and interests, I don’t say no.”


Su Ying Strang has revived The New Gallery, a local non-profit artist-run centre that was struggling financially, taking it from a deficit to budget surplus in just two fiscal years.


Photographed at home.

Centre’s new Cultural Leadership Program to nurture the next generation of arts leaders in the country. This past September, she was newly appointed to Glenbow’s board of governors and last month received an alumni award from ACAD. Strang jokes that her persistence and optimism comes from her being a Capricorn, but on a more

serious note, she attributes her work ethic to the way she was raised. “One of the things [my parents] instilled in me is that there’s not necessarily one straight linear path,” she says. “If you persevere, if you work hard, if you enlist the help of your family, your friends, your colleagues, you can always find your way.” —S.A.

Photograph by Jared Sych







Su Ying Strang marries a passion for the arts with the numbers savvy of a CFO. An American expat, Strang’s interest in Canada’s art system inspired her to apply to colleges north of the border, which is how she came to the Alberta College of Art + Design in 2006. In her final semester, Strang had an internship with The New Gallery (TNG), a charitable, non-commercial, artist-run centre established in 1975. She continued to volunteer after she graduated in 2010, was hired as TNG’s administrative director in 2012 and named executive director in 2015. When Strang was hired, TNG was running a nine-per cent annual operating deficit, putting it close to being flagged by municipal funders as unsustainable. Within one fiscal year of being hired, she decreased the deficit to three per cent and posted a three-per cent surplus by the end of the following year. Strang has increased TNG’s municipal funding by 8.45 per cent ($3,000), its provincial funding by 35.9 per cent ($10,193) and federal funding by 37.5 per cent ($15,000) and established the organization’s first endowment fund. In addition to balancing the books, Strang oversaw the process of finding and moving TNG into its new and recently renovated home in Chinatown after it lost its former space in Art Central when the building was demolished. In a nod to its cultural milieu, the gallery translates its exhibition texts into Cantonese and runs tours in Cantonese and Mandarin for seniors in the community. Strang’s work at TNG stems from her belief in the artist-run centre model: non-commercial ventures where artists serve to direct the work. She is the president of the Alberta Association of Artist-run Centres and captained its successful bid to hold the national biennial artist-run centre conference in the province in 2020. She is also an advocate for critical writing in the arts and initiated an art-writing group residency in 2015. Her acumen for arts administration led to her being one of only 19 participants (the only representative from Calgary) selected for the Banff P 40 U

At the foundation of now. And the forefront of what’s next. Whether building economic and community prosperity or developing new pathways to profit in the tech world, we’ve always been the foundation of Alberta’s success. Now our sights are set on where we can help take our province — and your career — next.


Congratulations to Ryan Roberts, Senior Vice President, for being recognized in Avenue Calgary’s 2018 Top 40 Under 40!

From some of the world’s largest facilities to those benefiting small remote communities, Ryan’s exemplary leadership and tireless commitment to excellence have improved water infrastructure for millions around the world. #stantecproud

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Adam Thompson 38 Owner and Designer, Friday Sock Co. 98



Adam Thompson started Friday Sock Co. four years ago, and has grown the business to an expected million dollars in annual sales. He makes his products with ethically sourced materials and labour and donates socks to the Mustard Seed and Drop-In Centre.

Photograph by Jared Sych



Photographed at East Village RiverWalk.


“When you’re looking at an opportunity, you can miss out on it by over-analyzing it, when you should just start doing it. Just take action at every chance you can.”



When Adam Thompson worked in corporate sales, he was known as “the guy who wore fun socks.” Now he has turned his fashion quirk into a business, Friday Sock Co., with an expected million dollars in annual sales. “Socks are really a thing that you can spice up a little bit,” says Thompson. “[They’re a way] to take back a certain amount of individuality within a job where you might be a cog in the wheel.” Friday Sock Co. makes purposefully mismatched socks — each pair sports two designs bearing some sort of relationship. Thompson’s first design featured a sailboat on one sock and an anchor on the other. His catalogue now includes bacon and eggs, campfires and tents, and his favourite pair, solved and unsolved Rubik’s cubes. He works with businesses and non-profits to create custom mismatched socks, such as a collaboration with the Calgary Underground Film Festival for popcorn and movie camera socks. “The real fun part is pushing the boundaries on the relationship of things and how they interconnect,” he says. The idea may seem niche, but Thompson has found an enthusiastic market. Friday Socks have gone from Thompson selling them himself at festivals and market booths to being on the shelves of more than 150 stores across Canada and the U.S. With no background in graphic design, Thompson learned to use illustration programs through online courses and by watching YouTube tutorials. “I’ve spent months on the designs, painstakingly going through each one to make sure it’s right,” says Thompson. After he finishes the designs, he sends them to a small factory in Italy that’s been run by the same family for three generations to be manufactured. Friday Socks use material from eco-friendly sources, and also recycles all leftover materials. While he originally had his socks manufactured in China, Thompson noticed an immediate improvement in the quality after he moved that process to Italy. Thompson says he never expected Friday Sock Co. to grow as big or as quickly as it did. He says he has made it a priority to give back to the city and has donated over 700 pairs of his socks to the Mustard Seed, as well as $6,000 to local charities including Cause Canada and the Ronald McDonald House of Southern Alberta. “I think it’s the responsibility of a business to help wherever they can, and small businesses are in a really good position to do a lot for the community,” he says. —M.Coyte P 40 U

Matt Toohey 36 Senior Advisor, Sustainability, TransAlta Corporation WHY HE’S A TOP 40

Matt Toohey’s passion for renewable energy has helped TransAlta remain a sustainability leader without compromising profits.




Matt Toohey says he became a “huge energy nerd” while working in the mail room of a Calgary oiland-gas company and pursuing his first degree, in communications. He leveraged that mailroom gig into nine years as a communication specialist and investor relations analyst with ARC Resources Ltd. Then, the Australian-born Calgarian went to Tanzania, and came back a renewable energy nerd. After an interlude in the U.K. to get his MSc in renewable energy from Newcastle University, he returned to Calgary in 2011. Here, he proceeded to infect others with his passion for sustainability and has helped make TransAlta a nationally recognized sustainability leader in the process. P 40 U 40


Why He’s Effective

“There’s still this misconception that sustainability can’t make money, which is very false,” Toohey says. “It can, and we know it can.” In fact, Toohey is so sure of this fact that he was able to convince the TransAlta executive team and board to accept his target of reducing the company’s CO2 emissions by 19.7 million tonnes by 2030. This move gives the corporation a specific goal and essentially a carbon budget. The company has also aligned its target with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, which aim to reduce global warming by two degrees. How Sustainability Pays Off

Under Toohey’s leadership, TransAlta became the first Alberta company to include sustainability disclosure with its financial reports, presenting its environmental, social and economic achievements and impacts to its shareholders. TransAlta has been added to the Leadership Index in Canada and recognized by the CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project) as an industry leader on climate management and received the silver level PAR (Progressive Aboriginal Relations) designation from the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business.

“The commodity business is a cycle and you have to be aware of that. Spend carefully, and spend [your client’s or corporation’s] money like it’s your own. Run lean and be pragmatic.”

Photograph by Brendan Klem

How He’s Changing the World

“We can’t change everything all at once; that’s overwhelming,” says Toohey. “But we can look at where we can contribute effectively and choose our focus. As a business that is an emitter of greenhouse gases, we can ask ourselves: what can we do here? And then, we can innovate and create a product that reduces the negative effects of what we do and still drives the economy forward.” That’s what he’s doing at TransAlta — encouraging out-of-box thinking at the grassroots and C-suite level and “leading sustainability across a global organization in a complex and very disruptive industry.” Or, as he calls it, “chipping away” at sustainable change. —M.Czarnecka AvenueCalgary.com


Photographed at the Versett Calgary office.

Doug van Spronsen 33 Co-founder and Managing Director, Versett WHY HE’S A TOP 40

In five years, Doug van Spronsen has helped grow Versett, which he co-founded, into a global design and engineering firm with 38 employees, three offices and a client list that includes American Express and Getty Images, among others, all while championing staffing policies aimed at removing barriers to diversity.

Photograph by Jared Sych





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Calgary may still be known as an oil-and-gas city, but people like Doug van Spronsen and the team at Versett are casting a spotlight on the city’s burgeoning technology sector. Versett was co-founded in 2013 by van Spronsen and Laurent Silva. The product design and engineering firm works with clients to figure out how digital platforms can help them grow. Once they’ve determined the best direction forward, Versett designs and develops digital products such as e-commerce websites, apps, mobile platforms or software for them. “We’re trying to look at business problems through a technology lens,” van Spronsen says. The Versett team’s talents have caught the eye of major companies around the world, garnering an impressive list of clients that includes American Express, Getty Images, the National Music Centre, Petco and more. As Versett’s co-founder and managing director, van Spronsen has played an important part in the company’s success, not only by working directly with clients and managing product development, but also by creating a more barrier-free office culture for the staff. For example, he has championed progressive parental leave policies as well as a corporate diversity that sees the company set and report on its “My greatest report diversity targets. After only a few years in busijoy is enabling ness, Versett opened a second office in New York 2016 and a third office in Toronto in 2017, with people to in a total of 38 employees across the three offices, succeed in 23 of whom work in Calgary. The company launched Versett Ventures in solving the big late 2017, a division that invests in promising problems.” Canadian start-ups, providing funding, mentorship and tech and design skills to help these companies grow. So far, Versett Ventures has invested in four companies, including a men’s hair care start-up called Mast and an interview coaching app called Prosper. In addition to volunteering with technology and design programs like CAMP Festival, Lighthouse Labs and Calgary UX, the Versett team is launching a series of tech talks later this year. “I’m a huge believer in the ability of Calgary to build [its technology sector] out and have a global impact. I think there’s no reason we shouldn’t be there. We have a ton of smart people in this city,” van Spronsen says. “A big part of Versett’s growth in the future will be helping that ecosystem develop.” Van Spronsen’s interest in technology, entrepreneurism and community extends beyond Versett — he has worked as a board director for Calgary’s Connect First Credit Union since 2014 and is a volunteer board member with a non-profit called True North Water. —A.W. P 40 U

The Board, Staff, Volunteers & Friends of would like to congratulate our Executive Director


on being named one of Avenue Calgary’s Top 40 Under 40


All she ever talks about is low hanging fruit smoothie. refinetoday.ca


KOOTENAY WORKING The Kootenay region is an amazing place to live and work. Full of exciting recreational activities and diverse career opportunities at all levels. From tourism to technology, manufacturing and healthcare, the possibilities are endless! Visit imaginekootenay.com to find out more.



Zain Velji 31 Partner and Vice President, Strategy, Northweather


Having worked on multiple political campaigns (including Obama’s), Zain Velji is helping build Northweather into a busy political strategy company while working on several non-profit boards.




For years, the Ismaili Muslim community in Calgary hosted a hugely popular breakfast on the first Saturday of Stampede. But in 2015, that Saturday fell smack in the middle of the holy month of Ramadan, a time of “heightened piety, spiritual awakening and fasting during the day,” Zain Velji says. Instead of cancelling, Velji helped transform the event into the “Break the Fast Sunset Breakfast,” giving Calgary its first evening breakfast, beginning just as the sun set at 9:53 p.m. That kind of problem-solving is typical of Velji and a key to his successes. P 40 U 40


Volunteer Extraordinaire

Velji sits on the board of Calgary Reads and is the former chair of its governance committee. He also serves on the board of the Canadian Children’s Book Centre and on the strategic committee of the YMCA Calgary board. And he’s active with the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers Calgary Hub, the Ismaili Council for the Prairies and the Aga Khan Foundation’s World Partnership Walk. Work Growth and Influence

As partner and vice president of strategy at Northweather, a technology start-up that develops digital strategy apps, platforms and campaigns for non-profits, corporations and political groups, Velji has helped to grow the business by 25 per cent since coming on-board in January 2017. For Velji, professional successes and volunteer commitments have been inseparable. For example, he saw Northweather’s FieldHQ campaign strategy technology in action while he was managing Naheed Nenshi’s mayoralty campaign in 2017. The products helped shape Nenshi’s engagement and communication strategy with his support base. Now, Velji is part of the team commercializing FieldHQ at Northweather. Velji was also one of the masterminds and commentators on The Strategists podcast, which has drawn an audience of 40,000 over its 68 episodes, and led to ongoing appearances for Velji on local and national CBC News. Whether he’s working or volunteering, Velji wants to make “an impact on community.” At Calgary Reads, he was part of the driving force behind the creation of the Children’s Reading Place in Inglewood, a haven for young bookworms where they can get free books. Political Entrepreneurialism

Velji has worked on several political campaigns (including for Obama in 2008). “It’s just like running a startup: you learn everything at once,” he says. “And when you come out of it, you’re addicted to community, and you have a passion to learn more.” —M.Czarnecka 1 02


“Relationships matter more than outcomes. I’ve seen too many people, especially in the worlds of marketing, strategy and politics, sacrifice a short-term outcome at the cost of relationships. It’s not worth it.”

Photograph by Brendan Klem

Fuelled by Motivation

Photo Credit: Jared sych

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CONGRATULATIONS Amanda Rae Storteboom

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Dr. Rita Watterson

Dr. Kimberly Williams

36 Resident Physician, 34 Staff Psychiatrist, Mosaic Psychiatry, University Refugee Health Clinic and of Calgary; Co-founder, Alberta Health Services InKolabo patient Services; Co-founder, Kolabo WHY THEY’RE TOP 40S

They’re physicians, teachers and advocates fighting for equitable treatment of people struggling with mental illness around the world and they’ve created a partnership to help train more medical students in psychiatry in Tanzania, which only has 30 psychiatrists serving the whole country.




Dr. Rita Watterson and Dr. Kimberly Williams met in medical school, and from the beginning they bonded over a shared interest in global health and mental health. In 2013, they founded Kolabo, a partnership between the psychiatry departments of the University of Calgary and a university in Tanzania, designed to reduce gaps in mental-health teaching in the eastern African country. They’ve since helped train hundreds of medical students and physicians there. “One in five individuals will be diagnosed with a mental illness,” says Watterson. “That’s a statistic that stands true both at home and across the world. Both of us are dedicated to addressing this in Calgary and abroad.” P 40 U 40


They Saw a Need and Decided to Help

They’re Friends as Well as Colleagues

Watterson and Williams have formed a tight friendship, solidified over hours of work and adventures. They laugh recounting a trip just before Williams’ wedding — she broke 1 04


her foot in Tanzania as she was demonstrating to medical students what mania could be like. Watterson had to help her dress and walk, and assist her back to Canada. Today, they’re also both mothers to very young children. “We’re figuring this out together, how to be mothers and manage careers and our work with Kolabo,” says Williams. Dr. Watterson Works with Refugees in Calgary

Watterson finished her residency last summer and now practices on an acute in-patient psychiatric unit and at Mosaic Refugee Health Clinic, where she cares for patients with a range of mental-health issues who are new arrivals to Canada. Dr. Williams is a National Leader and Advocate

Williams, who began medical school a year after her colleague, is in her final year of residency. She plans to further her training with a fellowship in neuropsychiatry. She currently holds leadership roles in national and international organizations for trainee physicians. —C.Frangou

Photograph by Brendan Klem

Watterson and Williams first travelled separately to Tanzania as part of a collaboration between the University of Calgary and the Catholic University of Health and Allied Sciences in Tanzania. There, they were each struck by the need for mental-health training for health-care workers. The burden of illness was beyond what local psychiatrists could manage — the country of over 50 million people is home to only 30 psychiatrists. The pair set up Kolabo (Swahili for collaboration) to train physicians and medical students in mental-health care. They lead fundraising efforts from Calgary, and have raised more than $50,000 to date. Watterson and Williams are also actively involved on the ground. They’ve both returned to Tanzania three times to teach and on their last trip, they trained nearly 300 medical students. They also teach a course together to Calgary medical students focused on treating mental health in vulnerable populations.




Tara Weber 38 Western Correspondent, BNN Bloomberg

Tara Weber’s reporting has broken stories that have led to some major changes for provincial institutions and has helped earn her network some of its best audience numbers in years. She also volunteers with the Down Syndrome Research Foundation, the Kerby Centre and Accessible Housing.

Photograph by Brendan Klem





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In 2014, when Tara Weber started her MBA at the University of Calgary, scheduling coursework around her day job at CBC, she assumed she would leave professional journalism. But journalism, it seems, had other plans. “I ended up laid off from CBC and then Business News Network (BNN) called, saying, ‘You’re doing an MBA, you have journalism experience, do you want to come work for us?’” In her 15 years of reporting with outlets including CityTV, CBC and now BNN Bloomberg as its western correspondent, Weber has broken stories that have had major impact. Her investigative reporting with CBC on the Treadz Auto scandal, where the owner of a car consignment company kept clients’ money after selling their vehicles, both helped the subsequent class-action lawsuit and led to Service Alberta overhauling the Alberta Motor Vehicle Industry Council, the organization that handles the registration of vehicle salespeople and consumer complaints. Another story Weber broke about Shaw’s voluntary buyout program gave BNN its most widely read online stories for weeks. As BNN’s only western correspondent at the time, Weber was perfectly placed to report on Alberta’s 2014 downturn. Her continued coverage on topics such as layoffs, economic impact, office vacancies and more contributed to the network’s best monthly numbers in two years, with an average of 25,000 viewers per minute, a 24-per cent increase over the previous year. Weber feels her presence has also impacted her industry. “I am the first national correspondent in a wheelchair,” she says. “Our industry is very fast-paced, deadline-driven and it can be difficult; I think that’s why you don’t see a lot of people with disabilities doing this job.” Weber volunteers with a number of organizations. For four years running, she has hosted a pretend stock market as a fundraiser for the Down Syndrome Research Foundation. She has moderated multiple times for groups such as Young Women in Energy, UBC Alumni Calgary and Calgary Economic Development, and judged for the national Radio Television Digital News Association. She is also often a guest lecturer for the U of C’s MBA business law course on crisis communications. Since 2015 she has served on the board for the Kerby Centre, a not-for-profit providing support services to seniors like grocery delivery, recreational opportunities and a shelter for the elderly. Weber is also on the board of Accessible Housing, which offers affordable, accessible housing for adults with limited mobility. Though all of these volunteer sector obligations might seem draining, Weber doesn’t feel that way. “People who volunteer get a lot out of it as well,” she says. —A.G. P 40 U

Strathmore... Country Living

Meets City Life AvenueCalgary.com


32 Executive Producer, Full Swing Productions





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Scott Westby is one of the faces behind a local filmproduction company that works with more than 100 local, national and international clients, and whose first feature film earned the highest number of award nominations at this year’s Alberta Film and Television Awards.

In 2014, Scott Westby was the first Calgary screenwriter in 17 years to be accepted into the National Screen Institute’s “Features First” program, a development training program for filmmakers working on their first or second feature film. Up to four teams across Canada are accepted each year. That same year, Westby and his business partner, Matt Watterworth, made the move to working full-time on their film company Full Swing Productions. They’ve since grown it into one of Calgary’s leading strategic video companies, generating revenue of over $1 million with three additional employees. Full Swing produces marketable video content, such as corporate training videos, commercials and feature films for more than 100 local, national and international clients, and has also garnered more than $300,000 in grant funding for various films. Westby was also awarded the extremely competitive Telefilm Micro-Budget Production Program grant of $125,000 to produce his first feature, In Plainview, which Watterworth directed. Set for worldwide distribution (in itself a significant accomplishment for an Alberta film), In Plainview created more than 50 jobs in Calgary and was nominated for eight Rosie Awards at the 2018 Alberta Film and Television Awards — the most of any P 40 U



Photographed at The Calgary Film Centre.

Alberta feature this year. Westby is now directing his first feature film, Jonsin’. Coming from a marketing background, Westby says he sees film not just as an artistic endeavour, but as an economic driver. “Film is commerce,” he says. “Look at California. You can have this industry that makes a ton of money.” As Calgary continues to reel from economic downturn, Westby believes film can bolster the city. “We’ve got landscapes that Hollywood pays millions of dollars to come shoot. Alberta crews are world-class and truly some of the best in Canada. The pieces are there, we just need to puzzle them together.” Westby knows that community is key to putting these pieces together. He dedicates his time through workshops, student practicums, the podcast he and Watterworth produce (The Alberta Filmmakers Podcast) and his work as a board member with the Calgary Society of Independent Filmmakers to share his knowledge and connect Calgary’s film community. “I think the more that you give new filmmakers the feeling that there is space for them here, the more you get that will to actually build something,” he says. “In the film industry, if you inspire one person, then that’s success.” —V.N.

Photograph by Jared Sych

Scott Westby

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Megan Zimmerman 37 Business Development Manager, Energy, Green Economy and Technology, Calgary Economic Development



Megan Zimmerman convinces companies and entrepreneurs specializing in the latest green technology to expand their local work or move their business to Calgary. Last year alone, her team attracted 67 new companies to the city, creating more than 5,700 new jobs here.





Megan Zimmerman sells Calgary to companies by convincing others to love the city as much as she does. She also works to make it an even better place to live. P 40 U

She Lives for Community

Zimmerman, with her then-colleague Mike Fotheringham, helped initiate and organize the Calgary Economic Development (CED) Soul of the City initative, which ran from 2012 to 2017. As part of that, she worked on the partnership between Soul of the City and the Calgary Foundation to run a 2012 grant program that awarded more than $100,000 to community groups for projects enhancing their neighbourhoods. She’s Putting the City to Work Zimmerman also created and managed the Renewable Energy and Green Economy portfolio at Calgary Economic Development, which grew to become the Energy, Green Economy and Technology portfolio she currently oversees. Zimmerman’s department focuses on ways to diversify Calgary’s energy sector and attract new technology to the city. Last year, the team she manages helped attract 67 new businesses now employing more than 5,700 Calgarians. That’s almost twice as many businesses as they had attracted the previous year. She’s Designing the Future

1 10


She Thrives on Collaboration

Zimmerman doesn’t drink coffee, saying she gets all the energy she needs from those around her. “I have never woken up and not wanted to come to work,” she says. She Gives Back

Zimmerman has also volunteered with an array of organizations across the city, including Timeraiser Calgary and YW Sheriff King Home. She also volunteers at a retirement centre each month teaching seniors how to use the Internet. —T.S.

Photograph by Brendan Klem

“We want to make sure that our people are prosperous, that we have good, highquality work and we are also honouring the land and the environment.”

And her passion for a greener economy doesn’t end at her job — Zimmerman is also an Energy Futures Lab fellow. The group of 60 industry stakeholders includes government personnel, non-profits, business leaders and community groups, and meets quarterly to discuss the future of Alberta’s energy sector and find ways to make it more environmentally resilient and competitive.



Joyce Byrne is group publisher at RedPoint Media & Marketing Solutions and publisher of Avenue Calgary. She is a former publisher of This Magazine, former associate publisher of awardwinning business magazines Alberta Venture and Unlimited and a former consulting publisher with the literary magazine Eighteen Bridges. Byrne is president of the Alberta Magazine Publishers Association (AMPA), past president of the National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) and a member of the board of the International Regional Magazine Association. Her work was recognized in 2018 with both the Achievement in Publishing Award from AMPA and the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement from the NMAF.



Uri Heilik





Charles Blanc



Charles Blanc is a French architect who, with British artist Tristan Surtees, established the collaborative art practice Sans façon in Glasgow, Scotland, in 2001. Sans façon achieved international recognition for its approach to working with public spaces. Blanc and Surtees moved their practice to Calgary in 2011 to be lead artists for the innovative public art project Watershed+, integrating artists within the City of Calgary’s Utilities & Environmental Protection department. As co-director of Sans façon, Blanc oversees and develops projects ranging from ephemeral performances to permanent works and city art masterplans across Europe and North America. He and Surtees are part of Avenue’s Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2014.

Uri Heilik is a partner of and business and operations manager for Alloy restaurant, which he co-owns with chef Rogelio Herrera. Born and raised in Calgary, Heilik graduated from SAIT’s professional cooking program. He and Herrera opened Alloy in 2007, and it has appeared on Avenue’s Best Restaurants list almost every year since then. Heilik was part of the Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2013.

Lourdes Juan Lourdes Juan is an urban planner and entrepreneur and an alumnus of the University of Calgary with a masters in environmental design. She is the director of Hive Developments and of Soma Hammam and Spa. She also works with two non-profits that she founded: the Leftovers Foundation and Moonlight Market Foundation. She sits on the board of directors of HomeSpace Society, the Calgary Homeless Foundation and Calgary Planning Commission. Her work and career accomplishments have received multiple accolades, including being part of Avenue’s Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2013 and being featured on the cover of Business in Calgary Magazine in 2014. This year she received the L’Oreal Paris Women of Worth award and was recognized as a Distinguished Graduate from the University of Calgary.

Anila Lee Yuen Anila Lee Yuen is CEO of the Centre for Newcomers and has 22 years of experience in the settlement sector. Lee Yuen is also the settlement representative on the Calgary Local Immigration Partnership and is vice-chair of the Alberta Association of Immigrant Serving Agencies. She holds bachelor of science degrees in psychology and biological sciences from the University of Calgary, an MBA from the Keller Graduate School of Management and is an alumnus of the U.S. State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program. She received the Governor General’s Award in Commemoration of the Person’s Case for her work advocating for the rights of immigrant and minority women and children in Canada. In 2017 she received the University of Calgary Alumni Award and was part of Avenue’s Top 40 Under 40.

Käthe Lemon Käthe Lemon is the editor-in-chief of Avenue magazine in Calgary, a role she took on in 2006. Over the course of her leadership the magazine has won multiple industry awards including recognitions from the Best of Calgary, the City of Calgary Heritage Authority, the Alberta Magazine Publishers Association (AMPA), the Western Magazine Awards, the National Magazine Awards and the International Regional Magazine Association. Lemon was named Alberta Editor of the Year by AMPA in 2011. Her community contributions have included being a founding board member of the Amber Webb-Bowerman Memorial Foundation, a charity that provides scholarships to students in journalism and the arts, and sitting on multiple community and industry association boards and committees.

Photograph of Charles Blanc and Anila Lee Yuen by Erin Brooke Burns; Uri Heilik by Colin Way; Käthe Lemon and Joyce Byrne by Jared Sych.


P 40 U



Joyce Byrne


See and be seen at www.lauraoconnellrealty.com | 403.681.8158







Alice Reimer As a technology entrepreneur, Alice Reimer led groundbreaking SaaS (software as a service) companies for global retail giants such as Walmart, The Home Depot, Staples and Lego. She received Profit W100’s designation as one of Canada’s Top Female Entrepreneurs and was recognized by Alberta Venture as one of Alberta’s 50 Most Influential People. Currently, as site lead of Creative Destruction Lab Rockies, Reimer works with Canadian academic, government and investment organizations to help accelerate technology commercialization with the potential to transform the world’s social, industrial and economic landscapes. She is also a sought-after mentor, staunch community ambassador, angel investor and one of Calgary’s most loyal champions. She received the prestigious Rod Charko Service Award for her contribution and impact on Calgary’s entrepreneurial community.

Raj Sharma is a lawyer, speaker, writer and commentator and a founding partner of Stewart Sharma Harsanyi, one of Canada’s largest dedicated immigration law firms. He holds a master’s degree in law and is a former refugee protection officer with the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). He has appeared before all divisions of the IRB, all levels of court in Alberta as well as the Federal Court and Federal Court of Appeal, and has over 140 reported decisions. He is a past recipient of the Access to Justice Award and was part of the Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2014. Sharma is also a sessional instructor with the U of C, teaching immigration law, and is on the board of directors for the Legal Education Society of Alberta. 1 14


Photographs of Dr. Amy Tan and Kate Thompson by Jared Sych

Raj Sharma

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Christmas in the Country Art Sale Dr. Amy Tan Dr. Amy Tan is an associate professor, academic family physician and hospice physician in the department of family medicine at the Cumming School of Medicine at the University of Calgary. She is on a mission to empower everyone to engage in quality advance-care planning conversations to better achieve care that meets each individual’s goals. She has won national and provincial awards for her medical education and research work and has numerous scientific publications and grant-supported research projects. She has volunteered with the Loran Scholars Foundation for more than a decade as a proud alumnus. Tan was part of the Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2017.

Kate Thompson Kate Thompson is Calgary Municipal Land Corporation’s vice president, projects, and leads the project team in delivering the master plan vision of East Village and the Rivers District. Currently, she is leading development of the New Central Library, overseeing the project team while working closely with the Calgary Public Library, the City of Calgary, project consultants and stakeholders. Thompson is chair of the YW Calgary board of directors and a member of the Dean’s Circle of Environmental Design at U of C, where she has been an adjunct professor since 2015. She is part of the Top 40 Under 40 Class of 2014.

Dan Zilnik Dan Zilnik is the president of Afara, a sustainability consulting firm that collaborates to build resilient, sustainable companies and economies. Zilnik helps energy companies, consumer packaged goods firms and government agencies solve complex problems and take action to deliver sustainable outcomes. Some of Zilnik’s work includes helping an oil company save $15 million a year in energy efficiency with no capital investment while reducing carbon output by around three per cent, and working with the federal government to design environmental regulations. Zilnik is the board chair of Carbon Management Canada and sits on the board of Trout Unlimited Canada. He is also a Harvardcertified negotiator.


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116 avenueNOVEMBER.18

BY Karen Anderson AND Erin Tettensor PHOTOGRAPHY BY Jared Sych

Explore some of Calgary’s best South Asian restaurants and learn about the people behind them.


A family style Moti Mahal meal of (counter-clockwise from top left) chopped okra, papaya prawn curry, saffron rice, barbecued bonesless chicken tenderloin and naan.

ndian cuisine has been a fixture of Calgary’s international dining scene for as long as anyone can remember, and with good reason — it’s some of the tastiest food around. But what is it, exactly, that makes Indian food so good? Science thinks it has an answer: it comes down to the mix of spices. While most cuisines tend to pair like flavours with like, Indian food does the opposite, juxtaposing different flavours in ways that keep our palates guessing. Take the spice mix, called masala, in vindaloo, for example: chili, cardamom, pepper, cloves, cumin, coriander, turmeric and cinnamon. These flavours have little in common, but together they are scrumptious. Fair play, science, but let’s not neglect the fact that all those glorious spices are layered over an internationally recognized trifecta of deliciousness: onions, butter (or more specifically, the clarified version known as ghee) and char-grilling. Indian cuisines are broken out into amazing regional variations dictated by terroir, technique, tradition and ingredients. Punjab, a northern region straddling the border between India and Pakistan, gives us some of India’s most well-known dishes, including tandoori chicken, naan and paneer. Southern India, meanwhile, gives us crispy dosa, rich Chettinad curry and spicy, coconutheavy fish and prawn curries. Vegetarian dishes are common (and delicious) all over the country. The main difference between northern and southern cuisines comes down to the choice of starches, says Ashok Elayaperumal of Madras Cafe in Marlborough. “In North India they have a lot of wheat products. That’s their staple food. But in South India, rice is the staple food.” And speaking of rice, one of the best ways to experience the regionality of South Asian cuisine is through biryani, the aromatic rice dish that is the pride of chefs from Peshawar to Chennai to Dhaka. If you’re still waiting to take that train trip across the Indian subcontinent, a culinary journey through a sampling of biryanis might just be the next best thing. —E.T.

Running a restaurant takes a village — or at least the talents of a very dedicated family. This is especially true when the restaurant in question serves Indian cuisine where menus come loaded with long lists of chaat (snacks), curries, masalas, clay-oven breads and rich sweets. It’s a complicated cuisine to master for any cook, and when you come from a country where atithi devo bhava (our guests are our gods) is the credo for hospitality, attention to detail in the front of the house is as important as the food. Here’s a look at a few of the Indian families who sew this ethos into their hospitality as they weave their region’s spice-coloured threads into the fabric of Calgary’s food scene.

THE MANNS The Mann family, whose ancestors hail from Punjab in Northern India, have run Moti Mahal on 14th Street S.W. for two generations. “My parents, Harjit and Bill Mann, bought Moti Mahal from my aunt 28 years ago,” says current owner Jesse Mann. “I grew up in the restaurant working mainly front of house. I left, went to business school, got a job, but found the office lifestyle was not for me. When I took over the business in 2014, I realized our chef team all went back to India to visit their families each year for three months, so I went to SAIT’s culinary school ... I wanted to be able to cover all aspects of the business as my parents did. Dad was front of house and my mom is our executive chef. She developed all of our dishes and you can still find her here three days a week.” AvenueCalgary.com


Pistachio burfi from Nirvana Restaurant and Bombay Sweet House.

THE SAMRAI/HUNDALS Makhan Samrai owned the very successful Tandoori Hut in Kensington for 20 years before high rents caused him to close. He retired, but inspired his sons, Raj and Harry Samrai, to open Tandoori Hut: Indian Street Food in Airdrie and his nephew Rav Hundal to open Karma in 2006 in southeast Calgary. “My family is from Punjab but I was born in Blairmore,” says Hundal. “I had worked with my uncle, but my mother, Mandeep, had always cooked for me, my siblings and cousins, and she loved it, so she’s in our kitchen every day now along with our original chef, Bhuwinder Sandhu.”

THE TANEJAS Gopal Taneja followed his brother to Calgary from Haridwar in the Himalayan-hugging state of Uttarakhand in 1972. He worked as a mechanic for CP Rail by day, drove a taxi by night and saved up to open Bombay Sweet House in 1996. “The business did well because we’ve always used real butter, cream and jaggery [cane sugar],” Taneja says. “People can taste the difference.” With his son Vik, Taneja opened Nirvana Restaurant and Banquet Hall in 2006. They’ve since sold the original Bombay Sweet House and installed it as a shop within Nirvana with gleaming displays of their made-in-house sweets. With former Mango Shiva executive chef Kiran Sehgal now in charge of all things culinary, the menu is fresh, business is brisk and Vik and Gopal can keep their focus on the front of the house. 1 18




Calcutta Cricket Club partner Shovik Sengupta was born in Montreal and raised in Calgary. He has now brought a taste of Bengal to Calgary with a menu that features kati rolls — a popular street food — and the most famous dish in the land of a thousand rivers, Bengali fish. Though the restaurant is not family run, Sengupta says it could not have happened without his deep connections to family in India. “I spent many summers visiting family in Kolkata and tagged along to their social clubs,” says Sengupta. “I wanted to create that in Calgary and our chef uses many of my family’s recipes.”

Originally from Bangalore in the South Indian state of Karnataka, Raj Mohan has made it a mission to share the lesser known flavours of South India at Raj Palace. “We started as Mysore Palace in 2003, but my wife Namratha Mohanraju and I left that partnership to create Raj Palace in 2007,” he says. Mohan credits executive chef Philip Thomas and his 28 years of experience in top South Indian resorts for the authenticity of their food. “I had tasted chef Thomas’s food at a five-star resort in India, we followed his career and recruited him to come to Calgary in 2012. It’s so exciting to have a chef of his calibre here.” —K.A.

Executive chef Philip Thomas (left) and chef Baskaran Kesavan with the rava masala dosa at Raj Palace.

Profile of a Dish

Clockwise from bottom left: paratha bread, rice and butter chicken from Madras Cafe.


algarians have fallen in love with many international dishes over the years, but few, if any, have a more devoted following than murgh makhani, better known as butter chicken. Rich, tangy gravy, vibrant colour, an aroma that beckons from blocks away … If you’ve ever found yourself standing over the sink slurping those last few droplets of butter chicken sauce out of a takeaway container, you’re not alone. So where did it come from, this heavenly dish? The story of murgh makhani has its deepest roots in Partition, the traumatic division of British India into the independent dominions of India and Pakistan in 1947. Millions of refugees criss-crossed the subcontinent, bringing their regional cuisines with them — which is how Moti Mahal, a Punjabi restaurant from the city of Peshawar (in modern-day Pakistan) came to be rebooted in Delhi. It was here that murgh makhani was created — when a diner asked for gravy to accompany his tandoori chicken, the chef hastily cobbled together a sauce of tomato, butter and cream. Butter chicken was born, and the world has never looked back. Small wonder there’s a “Moti Mahal” in dozens of major cities around the world — including right here in Calgary — the name is a fitting homage to the original restaurant that changed the way millions of people experience Indian cuisine. Tomato. Butter. Cream. Is your mouth watering yet? Here are four of our favourite local spots for butter chicken, ranging from bright and tomato-y to rich and velvety. —E.T.



This tiny South Indian eatery

This long-time Calgary fixture

serves its butter chicken flecked

does its namesake proud.

with cilantro and drizzled with

Big, juicy chunks of tandoori

heavy cream. Asked what makes

chicken carry a hint of charcoal

his so outstanding, chef Ashok

flavour, nicely complemented

Elayaperumal is coy, chalking it

by a tomato-forward sauce with

up to 20 years of practice, but he

plenty of depth.

can’t fool us — it’s the cashews

1805 14 St. S.W., 403-228-9990,

blended into the sauce.


175A 52 St. S.E., 403-455-5957, madrascafe.ca

NAMSKAR A perennial favourite, Namskar


serves one of the brightest, most

Smack in the middle of the

acidic versions of this dish, with

tomato-cream spectrum, Mirchi’s

plenty of sweet tomato flavour.

butter chicken is velvety, complex,

202 16 Ave. N.E., 403-230-4447,

and oh-so-fiery. It’s also one of


the cheaper offerings, setting you back only $12.99. 825 12 Ave. S.W., 403-245-3663, mirchirestaurant.ca AvenueCalgary.com


C ON FUSED ABOU T C U R RY? Curry is a slippery bananapeel-of-a-word. Landing on it, we fall back on using it to describe any Indian dish set before us. But the word’s origins point to its proper use. The Dutch were among the first to visit South India’s Malabar coast to trade for spices. This is the area of India where the king and queen of spices, pepper and cardamom, originated and still flourish. The locals fed the Dutch traders dishes laced with spicy gravies. Karee is the Dutch word for gravy so these dishes became karees, and karee, to the English ear, became “curry.” Non-gravy dishes are simply called masalas (spice mixtures). —K.A. Flame-grilled prawn tikka from Mirchi.

(and Pakistan and Nepal)



KARMA Try the paneer pakoras.


Bay 309, 4600 130 Ave. S.E.,

Freshly marinated chicken, lamb,

403-257-4977, karmacalgary.com

goat and fish masalas for your grill. 129, 7171 80 Ave. N.E., 403-764-


4455 and 5075 Falconridge Blvd, N.E.,

Owner Jesse Mann’s favourite


dish is the papaya prawn curry.

THE NORTH: RAJAS AND RICHNESS Northern Indian food is strongly influenced by the 300-year rule of the Mughal Empire, which was founded in 1526. Butter and cream, chilies and saffron run like rivers through the food. Meats are slow-cooked in rich sauces or grilled in tandoor ovens, wheat breads are baked, fried or stuffed, sweets and kulfis (Indian ice creams) rule supreme like Akbar the Great. Common northern dishes that we see in restaurants in Calgary include naan bread, rotis, samosas, curries such as palak paneer (spinach and cheese) and aloo gobi (potato and cauliflower). Garam masala is the predominant spice mixture used. 1 20


1805 14 St. S.W., 403-228-9990, motimahal.ca

MAHARAJAH RESTAURANT Outstanding tandoori chicken


marinated in yogurt and spices. 912, 10 Discovery Ridge Hill S.W., 403246-0080, maharajahrestaurant.com

Belly up to the Nirvana buffet then take home some pistachio


burfi (fudge) from Bombay.

Try the sizzling, hot-off-the-skewer

700, 5075 Falconridge Blvd. N.E.,

Mirchi kebab.

403-590-9797, nirvanacalgary.com

825 12 Ave. S.W., 403-245-3663, mirchirestaurant.ca

Holiday Gift Guide











Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut by Cococo Chocolatiers, makers of chocolate delights using Rainforest Alliance Certified™ cocoa and cocoa butter. 11 locations in Calgary cococochocolatiers.com


Thai Manna Inside the NEW Avenida Food Hall, Lake Fraser Drive. Thai Curry. Made from scratch. In your Kitchen. In 30 minutes. www.thaimanna.com

Calaway Park - 2019 Season Passes! Available from Nov. 11th, 2018 to Jan. 1st, 2019 at your local Calgary Co-op location or online at calawaypark.com It’s All About Family Fun!










Modern Steak The perfect stocking stuffer for the steak lover or corporate Thank You for that special client. Call 403.670.6873 for more information. modernsteak.ca National Music Centre A membership is the perfect gift for any music lover. Discounts, benefits and more! Purchase at studiobell.ca/members

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Empire Provisions Custom Meat & Cheese Gift Boxes from locally sourced products. www.empireprovisions.com 8409 Elbow Drive SW 403.244.0570



Dal bhat plate from The Himalayan.

THE SOUTH: COCONUTS AND CHILIES Southern Indian cuisines, which are the cuisines of the five southern states in India, feature an abundance of coconut and spices with generous use of vibrant green and sultry red chilies. Rice, lentils and stews feature prominently on menus, and vegetarian meals are the norm in the region. Dosas — thin, large pancakes made from fermented rice and lentils — are a staple, and are typically stuffed with a potato mixture and served with a selection of sauces. Southern dishes tend to be spicier than northern ones, likely owing to the hotter climate. MADRAS CAFE The cuisine from the Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu state is renowned for being elaborate, vibrant and complex. Chettinad dishes are especially good here. 175A 52 St. S.E., 403-455-4957, madrascafe.ca

MASALA BHAVAN The dosa plates come with satisfying sambhar (lentil stew) and

THE EAST: FISH AND FINESSE Bengal is a northeastern region of the Indian subcontinent. Located within the Ganges delta, and thusly veined with rivers, it’s hardly surprising that fish is the dominant protein in Bengali cuisine.

INDIA ADJACENT The cuisine of Nepal, bordered by India to the east, south and west, shares many similarities with Indian cuisine, but it also shows Chinese and Tibetan influences in the popularity of noodles, bamboo shoots and momos (dumplings).

coconut and tomato chutneys.

Kuka paka at the Safari Grill.

GUJARATI INDIAN VIA EAST AFRICA Gujarat Ismaili Muslim Indians migrated to East Africa in the 1920s and from there to Canada in the 1970s, bringing with them a cuisine that’s a fusion of flavours.


THE HIMALAYAN Dal bhat, which consists of


Go for the Bengali fish, marin-

steamed rice, lentil soup and vari-

Order the kuka paka, a bone-in


ated and roasted whole and

ous condiments, is ubiquitous in

chicken dish with a spiced coco-

The Malabar and Goan curries,

pair it with the “crushable” gin

Nepal. Try it here, but also don’t

nut sauce, to experience Gujarati

fragrant Hyderabadi dum biryanis

and tonic.

be afraid to plunge into the rest

flavours for yourself. —K.A.

and dosas as long as your table

340 17 Ave. S.W., 403-719-1555,

of the menu.

100, 255 28 St. S.E. (Short Pants

are top picks here.


3218 17 Ave. S.W., 403-984-3384,

Plaza), 403-235-6655,



33A 4604 37 St. S.W., 403-4604535, masalabhavan.com

Four locations, rajpalace.ca 1 22




Celebrating the recipients of the 2018 Emerald Awards


he annual Emerald Awards recognize and celebrate outstanding environmental achievements across all sectors in Alberta. From classroom curricula to large, corporate initiatives, the program recognizes a variety of projects. The Emerald Awards categories celebrate those who demonstrate commitment to the environment and take

the initiative to make quantifiable, sustainable changes, educate others about the importance of sustainability and lead the way for other individuals and organizations to adopt their own environmentally friendly practices. Read on to learn more about the people and groups who are greening Alberta, one project at a time.


Green Calgary’s Environment and Climate Literacy Project Community Group and Not-for-Profit Association: Large Organization


fter 40 years of serving Calgary communities with a number of environmental programs, Green Calgary has found a new niche as the voice for those just starting their environmentally friendly journeys. From youth programs in waste, water and energy efficiency to adult efforts on food sustainability and green cleaning, Green Calgary is refocusing its attention on environmental literacy, awareness and action for all Calgarians through this new program. Using the concept of boardroom-as-classroom, and a “small steps” approach, Green Calgary now provides residents with a central hub of knowledge — The Little Green Library and Green Hub interactive help desk. These resources offer expert advice on topics like solar energy, technical information and multimedia resources. There are how-to guides, children’s literature and documentary films on topics like pollinators, biodiversity and climate change. Green Talks are part of the non-profit’s re-launch too, bringing together environmental experts with community members.

Conor Tapp, Executive Director, Green Calgary

“Last year, we had a huge response from citizens, through social-media surveys and personal engagement, and they asked us to simplify and clarify the information overload around being ‘green,’” says Green Calgary executive director Connor Tapp. “We’re adding our expertise more holistically now, engaging citizens of every age and offering practical, everyday measures people can use to reduce their impact on the environment — even something as simple as recycling one extra item per day. Residents want a voice for change and we’re stepping up to the plate.” Green Calgary collaborates with community partners through events like YYC’s Young Citizen Scientist and the annual Energy Revolution Fair, aimed at young innovators and youths who can sometimes feel overwhelmed by issues like climate change. Green Calgary also offers programming at Bow Valley College, sustainability events at Mount Royal University, Brookfield Properties and TransAlta Canada,

and supports Red Deer’s efforts in making public events more sustainable. “The Emerald Award is a validation of the hard work and investment our team has put into environmental literacy — finding where we’re of most value to Calgarians,” says Tapp. “We’ve adapted and changed our messaging to reach new audiences. We’re growing, relevant and confident we’re doing the right thing; to educate, inspire and empower Canadians.” Syncrude’s VP Government and Public Affairs Kara Flynn says, “Groups like these play an important role in fostering a healthy environment. Working within their spheres of influence, they engage people in creating awareness of environmental issues and opportunities, and in taking positive action.” Ω

AWARD SPONSOR emeraldfoundation.ca 123 AvenueCalgary.com 1 2 3



RiverWatch Institute of Alberta CreekWatch Citizen Science and Stewardship Shared Footprints Award


ave you ever wondered what happens to rain and snow melt beyond the storm drain? Some assume such water is treated and then sent out into the river, but that’s not the case. Now, thanks to CreekWatch, citizen scientists are finding out exactly what pollutants are in these water sources — everything from concrete and plastic to garbage and animal droppings. A spinoff of the popular RiverWatch program, a student-focused and province-wide endeavour, CreekWatch citizen scientists in Edmonton, Calgary, Red Deer, Cochrane and Lac Ste. Anne borrow RiverWatch’s free-to-use, specialized water quality lab kits to collect and report data from urban creeks. The program, which includes volunteer training and tech support,

Reed Froklage, Coordinator, Corporate & Community Programs at RiverWatch Institute, tests water

uses municipal and provincial water monitoring expertise and HSBC water-program funding. It is overseen by government and watershed groups. In its four-year history, CreekWatch has focused on stormwater drainage, noting increased levels of phosphorous and finding road salt, bacteria, chemicals and invasive plants. In 2016, CreekWatch volunteers detected a stormwater plastics spill along Calgary’s Bow River — a major spill of approximately 500,000 industrial plastic pellets scattered along 10 kilometres of riverbank — that led to a 760-hour shoreline remediation. Every year on World Water Day, the CreekWatch report card ranks the health of urban stormwater creeks to aid in community awareness. “The citizen scientists who return year after year are our eyes on the ground,” says Reed Froklage, Coordinator, Corporate & Community Programs for the RiverWatch Institute. Last year, 81 volunteers conducted 410 site visits and spent 450 hours monitoring 15 urban creeks. Volunteers also participated in shoreline clean ups, invasive weed removal and tree planting. “We’re proud of the engaged citizens who are

passionate about protecting their creeks. This collaborative, timely and low-cost monitoring improves our urban stormwater quality, because we only need rain down the drain,” says Froklage. He says future and improved stormwater management will require communities to consider the low-impact development techniques of rain gardens, rain barrels, permeable pavement, bioswales and treatment wetlands. “The Emerald Award is a chance to shine a light on the good work being done. CreekWatch volunteers and staff put a lot of effort into the program.” The Alberta Real Estate Foundation strives to make purposeful investments that make a real difference in Alberta’s communities. For 27 years, our community investment program has enabled Albertans to understand and respond to changing land-use patterns, growth pressures, water-management issues and enhance the quality of their communities. Learn more at www.aref.ab.ca. Ω


124 The Emerald Awards


Submit nominations for the

28th Annual Emerald Awards today at emeraldfoundation.ca


EcoYOLO — Mission Replanting Fort McMurray | Youth


ort McMurray junior-high students Chintan Desai and Krish Shah aren’t your everyday 14-year-olds. After wildfires ravaged the area in 2016, the pair — who had already been part of the Regional Municipality (RM) of Wood Buffalo’s Green Teen program — wanted to do something to help replenish what nature had taken away. The result was EcoYOLO: Eco, for the environment, and YOLO, because you only live once, so protect the planet, explain the teens. The student-run environmental group that would meet weekly at École McTavish Junior High had a not so simple goal of engaging city

youth to replant trees lost in what became one of the largest natural disasters in Canadian history. That fire burned 590,000 hectares of forest and affected some 88,000 people who lived and worked in the region. In the spring of 2017, a core group of 11 determined EcoYOLO members enlisted the help of likewise dedicated teachers to recruit over 200 city youths to plant 1,650 young trees at Saprae Creek in the RM of Wood Buffalo. It took passion and commitment to learn about protocols in planting the “right tree in the right place,” and to find local and national corporate sponsors to finance the project. EcoYOLO

Rafiu Mostafa, Krish Shah, Chintan Desai and Marlien Bruwer, EcoYOLO

received over $17,000 in funding from Chevrolet Canada, Intact Insurance and local sponsors. “Trees are natural protectors — they help stop soil erosion and clean the air,” Desai says. “Even though fires are part of natural ecosystems, we planted more fire-resistant types — low-moisture, deciduous trees and conifers. The forest on the outskirts of town will regenerate on its own, but it’s important to give trees in the urban area a head start. Now it’s beautiful to see trees growing from the seedlings we planted.” Partnering with Tree Canada and the RM of Wood Buffalo, EcoYOLO is part of further tree-planting projects. This spring, EcoYOLO worked with Alberta Parks and 400 more junior high peers to plant 2,500 lake area trees. “We know others are doing great things too,” says Desai. “But we’re honoured and proud to win the Emerald Award. The project has been meaningful to all involved in the treeplanting efforts.” Shell hosts the Youth category annually because the company believes strongly in the power of young people to steward our environment today and help create a sustainable legacy for Albertans. We salute the winners from EcoYOLO for stepping up and making a difference! Ω


emeraldfoundation.ca 125

126 avenueNOVEMBER.18


ON PARKER (FAR LEFT) Burberry club blazer, $1,850, Isaia turtleneck sweater, $930, Thom Browne trousers, $1,490, all from Holt Renfrew; Rolex watch, $9,400, from J. Vair Anderson Jewellers; socks, stylist’s own; Church’s boots, $740, from gravitypope. ON TYRON (NEAR LEFT) Kenzo jacket, $795, Kenzo turtleneck, $405, Thom Browne trousers, $1,200, all from Holt Renfrew; Boss Hugo Boss loafers, $160, from Man of Distinction.





Shetland wool blazer, $595, Shetland wool trousers, $225, watch, $355, all from Michael Kors Mens; Jungmaven long-sleeve shirt, $75, from North American Quality Purveyors. ON PARKER (OPPOSITE LEFT) Leather jacket, $1,500, from Coach; Our Legacy suede zip-shirt, $925, from Understudy; Nomos GlashĂźtte watch, $6,500, from J. Vair Anderson Jewellers; A.P.C. jeans, $250, and New Balance sneakers, $160, from gravitypope. ON TYRON (OPPOSITE RIGHT) Oliver Spencer coat, $789, Oliver Spencer sweater, $309, Oliver Spencer trousers, $305, all from Understudy; Alberto Fasciani boots, $930, from Shear Luxury.



1 30

Le 31 faux shearling coat, $175, Domine striped shirt, $69, Le 31 turtleneck, $30, Matinique check pants, $188, all from Simons; ring, $1,250 (14-kt) to $1,600 (18-kt), from Wong Ken’s. OPPOSITE (ON TYRON, LEFT) The Rail varsity jacket, $167, Vince cabana shirt, $307, Boss Hugo Boss trousers, $238, all from Nordstrom; tote, $595, from Coach; Common Projects sneakers, $540, from gravitypope. (ON PARKER, RIGHT) Belstaff quilted vest, $355, Wings + Horns zip hoodie, $165, Ted Baker London shirt, $209, Boss Hugo Boss trousers, $250, Prada sneakers, $720, all from Nordstrom; Bvlgari ring, $2,050, from Birks.



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FA S H I O N SOURCE Versace sunglasses, $375, Saks Fifth Avenue Collection velvet sportcoat, $610 to $698, McQ Alexander McQueen button-down shirt, $340, Gucci watch, $1,140, J. Lindeberg trousers, $195, Saint Laurent mid-top sneakers, $995, all from Saks Fifth Avenue.

Birks, The Core, 403260-8700, CF Chinook Centre, 403-255-6696, maisonbirks.com Coach, CF Chinook Centre, 403-252-5005, coach.com gravitypope, 1126 17 Ave. S.W., 403-209-0961, gravitypope.com Holt Renfrew, The Core, 403-2697341, holtrenfrew.com J. Vair Anderson Jewellers, 409 3 St. S.W., 403-266-1669, jvairanderson.com Man of Distinction, 115, 12100 Macleod Tr. S.E., 403-523-0120, 1418 9 Ave. S.E., 403454-3133 and 12B, 49 Elizabeth St., Okotoks, 403-995-0616, manofdistinction.com Michael Kors Mens, West Edmonton Mall, 780-484-5672, michaelkors.ca Nordstrom, CF Chinook Centre, 587-291-2000, nordstrom.ca North American Quality Purveyors, 1207 10 Ave. S.E., 403-910-9913, shopnorthamerican.com Saks Fifth Avenue, CF Chinook Centre, 403-440-2100, saksfifthavenue.com Shear Luxury, 1412 9 Ave. S.E., 403-455-2010, shearluxury.ca Simons, The Core, 403-697-1840, simons.ca Understudy, 1312 1 St. S.W., 403-452-7151, understudyshop.ca Wong Ken’s, Willow Park Village, 403-271-9267, wongkens.com CONTENTS PAGE Paul Smith print shirt, $250, Paul Smith trousers, $475, from Holt Renfrew; titanium chain, $795, from Wong Ken’s; Zonkey Boot loafer, $885, from Shear Luxury.



2711 14th st SW #WEPUTTHEHOMEINDREAMHOMES AvenueCalgary.com


You don’t have to wait for the big spring thaw to take to the trails. If you’re properly equipped, a hike is an invigorating way to enjoy the outdoors during the cold-weather months. Johnston Canyon. 1 34


Photograph courtesy of Travel Alberta


M O U N TA I N S BY Leigh McAdam



or the uninitiated, the thought of a winter hike might have all the appeal of a root canal. But those in the know will tell you there’s a palpable thrill to heading out on foot on snow-covered trails. Imagine a world where the air is crisp, noises are muffled and trees covered in hoar frost stand out against an impossibly blue sky. Then there’s the feeling you get deep inside — that sense of satisfaction that you got your butt up off the couch and are out doing something wonderful for both body and soul. Winter hikes do take some planning. You need to dress properly from top to bottom. Lose the cotton and layer up starting with clothes that wick moisture away from your skin — lightweight layers can be removed as you start to heat up. Top off with a warm, insulating layer (down or a synthetic equivalent) and add a windproof jacket if conditions warrant. Include a warm hat, a neck warmer and mitts. And don’t cheap out on footwear; a good pair of insulated boots can mean the difference between a great day and a miserable experience. Ditto the socks; wear wool or synthetic hiking socks and pack an extra pair in case the first pair gets wet. Prevent a potentially injurious fall by bringing along a pair of ice cleats (outdoor brand Kahtoola’s slip-on Microspikes are popular) and a set of hiking poles — both are invaluable after a stretch of freeze-thaw cycles. Come December, the sun in Calgary is out of the picture by 4:30 p.m. so plan accordingly. Get an early start, factoring in driving time so you’re not coming off the trail in the dark. And always pack along a headlamp and extra batteries. You’ll also need to keep your body fuelled and hydrated while you’re hiking, no matter what the temperature. Carry a Thermos of something hot like soup, tea or hot chocolate. Keep energy bars handy and eat often if you’re working hard. Don’t forget sunscreen, lip balm and a first-aid kit stocked with basics like alcohol wipes, Band-Aids and ibuprofen. In winter, it’s also not a bad idea to throw in a couple of hand or toe warmers as they can emit heat for up to eight hours. As for snowshoes, while all the trails described here can be done without them, there are times after a big dump of snow that snowshoes will be the way to go. Current models are compact, lightweight and easy to strap to a day-pack. Rent a pair, or better yet, invest in some, as they’ll last you for decades.

Glenbow Ranch, Rocky View County Historic Glenbow Ranch is only 30 minutes by car from Calgary, but this landscape of rolling grasslands along the banks of the Bow River feels a world away. To get your bearings before you set out, have a look at the detailed trail map at the Visitor Centre and choose the right route based on how much time you have. With around 30 kilometres of paved and gravel trails, you can spend an hour or take the whole day exploring the prairie landscape. Whether you’re on a loop trail that weaves through stands of aspen and up quiet coulees or on out-and-back section of the Trans-Canada Trail that runs from the fringes of Calgary to the Gleneagles neighbourhood in Cochrane, the only company you might have is a couple of deer.

Johnston Canyon, Banff National Park

Troll Falls.

The icy but easy hike up through Johnston Canyon ticks all the boxes for a beautiful outdoor winter experience — a cantilevered catwalk in a spectacular canyon setting with up-close views of frozen icefalls, airy lookouts and ice-climbers in action. To get the full experience, plan to hike the extra 2.7 km (one way) to the second and most awe-inspiring icefall. Though Johnston Canyon doesn’t draw the same volume of crowds during the winter as it does during the summer, it’s still a popular attraction, so go early if you want some elbow room at the lookout points. And this is definitely one hike where you’ll want to have your ice cleats with you.

Troll Falls photograph by HikeBikeTravel.com

Troll Falls, Kananaskis Country Need an easy, family-friendly outing you can knock off in an hour or two? Troll Falls near Kananaskis Village is an out-and-back hike to a stunning icefall ringed by small cliffs. Over the 1.7 km it takes to get to the eponymous falls, you’ll enjoy an interesting mix of scenery including evergreen forests and classic K-Country views. Bring a pair of ice cleats if you want the otherworldly experience of walking behind the frozen falls. As for the troll? Use your imagination when you look at the large holes in the cliff walls. AvenueCalgary.com


M O U N TA I N S Prairie Mountain.

MAY 24-26, 2019

REGISTER TODAY! Early Bird Pricing In Effect


Prairie Mountain, Kananaskis Country If you’re craving a winter hike in the mountains that delivers a workout without fear of avalanche danger, head up Prairie Mountain near Bragg Creek. While it may feel like you’re on a neverending stair climber as you gain 726 metres over 3.8 km, you’ll be rewarded with an endorphin rush and glorious mountain views from the summit. On a clear day, you can even see downtown Calgary. The hike is a popular one and dog-friendly, too, so you’re bound to be sharing the trail with others, which can be comforting if you’re new to winter hiking (as in the other seasons, dogs must be on a leash). Pack warm gear as it’s typically cold and windy once you reach the treeline. Fit hikers can be up and down Prairie in three hours or less.

Badlands Interpretive Trail.

1 36


Badlands Interpretive Trail, Drumheller Choose a bluebird day when the sun is shining and the snow is sparkling to hike the stunning Badlands Interpretive Trail. Pick up the 1.4-km trail behind the Royal Tyrrell Museum and see for yourself the appeal of the Badlands in winter; coulee landscapes, hoodoos robed in snow and gorgeous, multicoloured rock formations showcase the remarkable seasonal beauty of the area. While the interpretive trail is short, there are options for keen hikers to continue on via an easily recognizable spur trail that links to the extensive Drumheller River Parks System. From there, you can continue in either direction along the scenic Red Deer River, retracing your steps to finish the hike.

Prairie Mtountain photograph by Michael Novak; Badlands photograph by HikeBikeTravel.com



You have worked hard to challenge and inspire so many people to find their greatness. You have celebrated the achievements of so many others and now your Run Calgary family is proud to celebrate yours. Congratulations on being named to Avenue’s Top 40 Under 40. AvenueCalgary.com


Layer Up


The Arc’teryx Beta SV jacket isn’t just the outer layer you want, it’s the outer layer you need, $800, at Arc’teryx Calgary, 150, 815 17 Ave. S.W., 587-392-3135, arcteryx.com.

Pole Position

Remain upright with Komperdell C3 Carbon Pro hiking poles, $159, at MEC, 830 10 Ave. S.W., 403-2692420 and 19587 Seton Cres. S.E., 403-523-7258, mec.ca.

Boot Up

Whether you’re walking through snow or slush, keep your feet toasty in Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX insulated hiking boots, $279, at MEC.

Hot On the Trail

Warm your insides with soup, tea or special coffee in a 16-ounce Klean Kanteen insulated bottle, $37, at MEC.



When it comes to winter hiking, having the right gear can make for happy trails. Here are top picks to keep you warm, dry, safe and having fun.

Day to Night

Daylight disappears fast in the winter, so have a Petzl Actik headlamp on hand, $60, at Campers Village, 7208 Macleod Tr. S.E., 403-252-3338, campers-village.com.

Energy Bites

Don’t Hate, Insulate

For warmth without weight, don a light-as-a-feather Patagonia Down Sweater Jacket, $269, at Patagonia, 135 8 Ave. S.W., 403-266-6463, patagoniaelements.ca. 1 38


Feet First

Icebreaker socks with Merino wool, are soft, supple and super warm without being bulky, $29, at Campers Village.

Get a Grip

Kahtoola Microspikes slip on over regular winter boots so you can tackle slippery trails with confidence, $79, at MEC.

photographyby Jared Sych

Bounce Balls trail snacks are tiny but mighty, $2.99, at Community Natural Foods, three Calgary locations, communitynaturalfoods.com.

w o N pen O


A N E W LY O P E N E D B A R & B R A S S E R I E I N T H E I C O N I C FA I R M O N T B A N F F S P R I N G S . G o o d l o o k i n g a n d b o l d , Th e Ve r m i l l i o n R o o m we l co m e s yo u w i t h o p e n a r m s , a d e l e c t a b l e m e n u a n d e f f o r t l e ss c h a r m . S te p i n to a g ra n d s p a ce t h a t swe e p s yo u o f f yo u r f e e t a n d i n to a b e a u t i f u l b ra s s e r i e w i t h a b u s t l i n g a t m o s p h e re a n d a m e n u to d e l i g h t i n . V E R M I L L I O N R O O M . C O M | @ V E R M I L L I O N R O O M | B A N F F, A L B E R TA



The small dining area makes a big design statement with its glossy marble Saarinen table and Flos brass pendant light.

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A rare two-storey Mount Royal condo with two wood-burning fireplaces and both north- and south-facing views is a cozy mid-century-inspired hideaway in the thick of the action.

W ABOVE The luxe pink velvet Perez Chair from 4Living adds a warm pop of Sharon Schuld’s favourite colour to the crisp white walls and warm wooden accents.

hen Sharon Schuld bought her Mount Royal condo in 1989, she knew she had found a treasure worth keeping. Schuld had always loved the area and knew it was where she wanted to establish her roots. Nearly 30 years later, her love of the neighbourhood and the condo has grown exponentially. The avid knitter and owner of Pudding Yarn, a knitting, textile and needle-arts shop located just off 17th Avenue S.W., brings the creativity and passion she has for her work into the design of her dream home. The spacious two-storey unit that she shares with a tabby named Smish is a constant work in progress. Most recently, Schuld completed an extensive

renovation in the kitchen, transforming it into a place where she could entertain and cook for friends and family. “The older I get, the more of a cook I am,” Schuld says. “The renovation was a true upgrade from the impractical, dated kitchen that I lived with for years. Now, I have a truly functional space that was completely worth waiting for.” Schuld hired a handyman to rip out the existing kitchen, which had an impractical dividing wall, and install white lacquered IKEA cabinets, opting for a brushed-brass pull on all of the lower cabinet doors and drawers. She added a large island to the space, allowing for extra seating and creating new boundaries with the open-concept living room. AvenueCalgary.com



C U R AT I N G A C OMFO RTABL E HOME Having lived for 30 years in her two-storey Mount Royal condo, Sharon Schuld has curated a space that reflects her passions, style and personal-design philosophy. Here are some of her top tips. 1. Always be editing. “You have to continually edit and curate your home — donate, recycle or sell. Try to make a point of working on one area of your home every few weeks.” 2. Get what you want. “Don’t be influenced by what is trendy; purchase only things that reflect your personal tastes.” 3. Take risks with colour.

ABOVE The unique twostorey condo has slanted south-facing windows in the living room that fill the open-plan living space with natural light year-round.

“It is fine to have a neutral base, but I encourage you to play with colour and enrich your home.” 4. Don’t buy the first thing you see. “Renovations are

RIGHT Perched on the second floor of the condo, the main bedroom features a wood-burning stone fireplace and steps out onto a spacious balcony with a view of downtown Calgary.

tricky because you want it to all come together seamlessly, but you should definitely contrast and compare your options for things like fixtures and appliances. 5. Don’t be in a rush. “You’re building up a lifetime of things: furniture, artwork, books. It doesn’t have to all come together at once. Take your time.”

“Having everything appear seamless and uniform was really important to me,” Schuld says. “The space is bright and open, but I don’t want to see my appliances when I’m relaxing in the living room. Integrating the fridge into the cabinetry was a big starting point for the renovation.” Schuld decorated the living room to showcase her love of mid-century-modern design, a passion that was passed down from her mother. “I grew up with mid-century-modern design and a mother who was absolutely inspired by the modernist movement,” says Schuld. “She was constantly changing up the rooms in our home and her sense of style and bravery to try new things rubbed off on me.” 1 42


Schuld is not afraid to use colour, sometimes in unexpected combinations. A blush velvet chair quietly beckons anyone who walks into the living room, promising comfort and relaxation. “I wanted a reading chair but tried to step away from the norm; I didn’t want the quintessential Eames lounger that everyone else has,” Schuld says. “The Perez Chair makes a statement. When I saw that they could upholster it in this highgrade pink cotton velvet, I was sold. Paired with an ochre throw pillow and my new pale blue velvet footstool, it is a surprising colour palette that is actually very pleasing to the eye.” Upstairs, in addition to a home office and guest bedroom, Schuld has created a bedroom retreat

for herself. The room looks out over the treetops and features a breathtaking view of downtown Calgary. The bright space extends outdoors with a sprawling north-facing balcony. The bedroom is where Schuld spends a lot of time poring over her extensive book collection, and it’s no wonder, as the second of the home’s two wood-burning stone fireplaces creates a cozy atmosphere on even the coldest evening. “I can’t picture living anywhere else,” says Schuld. “This place has such good bones and I will always be working away on it, making it mine.”


“Pre-Styled” Jewellery at Up To 40% Off OR Design-Your-Own. The choice


3.02 total carat weight round brilliant-cut diamond stud earrings set in platinum, price upon request; aquamarine bead necklace, $3,130, with aquamarine and diamond pavé pendant set in18-kt white gold, $25,290. All available from Brinkhaus, 823 6 Ave. S.W., 403-269-4800, brinkhaus.com

is yours!




Dining-room pendant light by Flos, flos.com Saarinen marble dining-room table from Kit Interior Objects, 725 11 Ave. S.W., 403-508-2533, kitinteriorobjects.com Abstrakt kitchen cabinets from IKEA, 8000 11 St. S.E., 866-866-4532, ikea.ca Backsplash tiles by Heath Ceramics, heathceramics.com Colonial bronze cabinet pulls from Banbury Lane Design Centres, 1301 10 Ave. S.W., 403-244-0038, banburylane.com Caesarstone kitchen countertops from IKEA Eames island stools from Design Within Reach, dwr.com Ceramics in kitchen and dining room by John Chalke from Willock & Sax Gallery, 210 Bear St., Banff, 403762-2214, willockandsaxgallery.com Living-room sofa from 4living, 1445 17 Ave. S.W., 403-228-3070, 4living.ca Throw pillows from 4living; Inspirati, 2207 4 St. S.W., 403-244-4443, inspirati.ca; Crate and Barrel, Southcentre, 403-278-7020, crateandbarrel.ca; and handmade by homeowner Ottoman from 4living Circus pouf by Normann Copenhagen, normann-copenhagen.com Perez chair from 4living Eames accent chair in living room from Kit Interior Objects Lamps from Pottery Barn, CF Chinook Centre, 403-259-2100, potterybarn.ca Bedroom lounge chair by Ligne Roset, ligne-roset.com Lamp on stone fireplace by Rich Brilliant Willing, richbrilliantwilling.com Bedspread from Pottery Barn








Light Fantastic

Six lovely light fixtures similar to Sharon Schuld’s dining-room pendant.

3. 1 44


1. Luna lamp, $1,116, from Bondars Furniture, 403-253-8200, 6999 11 St. S.E., bondars.com 2. Five-O LED pendant by Minka George Kovacs, $1,436, from Cartwright Lighting, 403-270-8508, 7301 11 St. S.E., cartwrightlighting.ca 3. Flos IC wall/ceiling light, $815, from LightForm, 403-508-9980, lightform.ca


4. Dimond Huntington Drive five light floor lamp, $1,038, from Starlight Lighting, 829 10 St., Canmore, 403-807-5071, starlightlighting.ca 5. Lillholmen wall lamp, $20, from IKEA, 8000 11 St. S.E., 1-866-866-4532, ikea.com 6. Lambert pendant by Hudson Valley Lighting, $750, from Robinson Lighting & Bath Centre, 4120 Blackfoot Tr. S.E., 403-245-8637, robinsonlightingandbath.com.

IKEA photograph courtesy of IKEA, ikea.ca; LightForm photograph by Piero Fasanotto

BY Sarah McMenemy


CDL South 7265-11 Street SE Calgary, AB T2H 2S1 CDL North 11752 Sarcee Trail NW Calgary, AB T3R 0A1 CDL Invermere 4B 492 Arrow Road Invermere, BC V0A 1K2


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WORK OF ART CURATED BY Katherine Ylitalo


wo pleated walls flank the pedestrian path that crosses the plaza of Quarry Park Recreation Centre. On each side, 12 upright sheets of rust-coloured steel are welded in pairs in a sequence of folds. They mirror each other, their rims descending from monumental stature at the outer edges to playhouse height, defining crisp, diagonal zigzags. From a distance, the broad gesture of the form suggests the cross-section of a wide valley, an abstraction of the Bow River landscape, perhaps. Up close, the screens conjure urban living spaces within the folds. Like a giant accordion pop-up book, the sculpture sets the scene for a narrative, from childhood play to adult rest. Geometric perforations and minimal add-ons propose interior and exterior architecture. The concept of “affordance,” coined by perceptual psychologist James J. Gibson, helps to understand how the sculpture works on us. Our perception of the material, form and scale provide clues as to how we might make use of the site: walk through a doorway, drop mail through a slot, put books on a shelf, place your face within the frame of a circle, sit on a step. 1 46


Even if you don’t actually touch the sculpture — its surface is remarkably smooth, durable and oxidizing gently — it has the power to elicit the imagination and memory of activities. The Fold is an unusual mash-up. The formal modernist aesthetic of an artist like Richard Serra, famous for monumental Corten steel sculptures, meets utilitarian expression and the social imperative for art advocated by Russian Constructivist Aleksander Rodchenko. The outcome is friendly. Artist Adad Hannah is recognized internationally for his contemporary approach to an early form of entertainment, the tableau vivant. In the last two years, Hannah has shown such projects at Glenbow and the Founders’ Gallery at the Military Museums. In a recent interview, Hannah, who is based in Montreal and Vancouver, notes that his public art projects don’t usually look like his gallery and museum work. His comment is food for thought about how community input plays out in some public projects. The process for developing this piece included neighbourhood workshops to gather ideas about favourite shapes and spaces that they

would enjoy being in and that mirrored spaces they knew, however, it is Hannah’s strength as an artist that holds the work together. Aspects of his artistic practice apparent in this sculpture are the strong unifying form and thoughtful staging that calls attention to small human gestures. Over the life of the sculpture he hopes that the children will remember their part in the workshops as they grow up with the Centre as an important place in their daily lives.

Photography courtesy of Brad Hays

The Fold

TITLE: The Fold, 2016 ARTIST: Adad Hannah MEDIUM: Weatherizing steel. SIZE: 12.8-feet high by 130-feet long by 5.6-feet wide (measurements include the span of the gap). LOCATION: Quarry Park Recreation Facility, 108 Quarry Park Rd. S.E. NOTES: Commissioned by the City of Calgary Public Art Program via an open international call. Fabricated by George A. Wright & Son (special thanks to Paul Dykstra). The Fold was one of 10 works acknowledged in the 2017 Public Art Year in Review at the 2017 Creative City Summit in Halifax, N.S.

Photo Michel Gibert, for advertising purposes only. *Conditions apply, ask your store for more details.

“This collection is a tribute to the adventurer we all dreamed of being. A journey is a transformative experience, and we wanted each piece to capture the feeling of bringing home worldly treasures from faraway places.”

Montgolfière, sofa. La Parisienne, Chess, cocktail tables. Up, lamps. Design Marcel Wanders.

French Art de Vivre

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BUILDING BEAUTIFUL HOMES IN CALGARY & AIRDRIE 40 Years of Thoughtfully Designed Homes and Communities. Before we break ground on a new Mattamy community, we dig deep into the wants and needs of those who will live there. This approach has helped more than 90,000 people realize their dream of homeownership. We’ve built hundreds of master-planned communities across North America, each designed for the way people really live. In Calgary, we’ve created five distinct communities across the map, giving everyone the opportunity to experience a Mattamy home.

The Jade, Yorkville Showhome

The Bradford, Yorkville Showhome

The Selkirk, Carrington Showhome

Learn more about our Calgary communities at mattamyhomes.com/calgary

All illustrations are artist’s concept. All dimensions are approximate. Prices, specifications, features, terms and conditions subject to change without notice. E.&O.E.

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