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May / June 2020

VIDO-InterVac at the Foref ront of COVID-19 Research

“An Advanced Facility Built for This Type of Pandemic”

Growing Together:

Members in the News pg. 10

| Non-Prof its pg. 22

Image: Debra Marshall

A vision for Saskatoon’s new economy


For more information on this event or for ticket sales, please contact us at: chamber@saskatoonchamber.com or 306-244-2151 PRESENTED BY:

May / June 2020


Image: Gord Waldner

Darla Lindbjerg, Chief Executive Officer Kendra Cruson, Vice President, Operations Margot Orr, Director of Policy and Government Relations Terry Lawrence, Office Administrator Ryssa Mae Alarcon, Executive Assistant Roz Macala, Office Coordinator Henry Buitrago, Creative Coordinator


Chair Chris Sicotte - AON 1st Vice-Chair Carla Browne - Real Canadian Property Management Professionals Inc. 2nd Vice-Chair Jason Aebig - Creative Fire Past Chair Peggie Koenig - Koenig & Associates Inc. Sandra Ribeiro - Canadian Light Source Inc. CeCe Baptiste - Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technology (SIIT) Todd A. Denzin - Nutrien Linda Exner - PCL Construction Management Ltd. Katrina German - KatrinaGerman.com Adam McInnes - Med Hack Enterprises Incorporated Graham Snell - Saskatoon Aerocentre Colton Wiegers - Wiegers Financial & Benefits Penny Yeager - MLT Aikins LLP


Publisher: Kendra Cruson Editor: Terry Lawrence Layout & Design: Henry Buitrago Contributing Writers: Darla Lindbjerg, Elizabeth Ireland, Carla Browne, Margot Orr Sales: Kendra Cruson Photography: Henry Buitrago Canadian Publications Mail Agreement No. 40052085

Featured Content 4



New Members

Return Undeliverable Addresses to: Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce 110-345 4th Avenue South, Saskatoon, SK S7K 1N3

BUSINESS VOICE is a publication of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce Copyright 2020 Phone: (306) 244-2151 Email: chamber@saskatoonchamber.com Website: www.saskatoonchamber.com Twitter and Instagram: @stoonchamber



Upcoming Chamber events

February & March 2020






Profile Growing Together:

Members in the News

Members celebrating expansions, new ventures, anniversaries and more

Cover Story VIDO-InterVac at the Forefront of COVID-19 Research

A vision for Saskatoon’s new economy


Chamber Happenings


Chair’s Message

Chamber Events

A Message from the Incoming Chair

“An Advanced Facility Built for This Type of Pandemic”

Disclaimer: BUSINESS VOICE makes no warranties of any kind, written or implied, regarding the contents of this magazine and expressly disclaims any warranty regarding the accuracy or reliability of informations contain herein. The views contained in the magazine are those of the writers and advertisers: They do not necessarily reflect the view fo the Business Voice magazine and its publisher the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce.


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Join the Chamber for the Annual General Meeting via Zoom as Mayor Clark inducts the new Chair, ViceChair and 2nd Vice-Chair to the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. Also get the chance to meet new and current Board members.

SPEAKER: Jolene Watson Professional Speaker and Trainer SERIES Clarity Coaching & Development

DATE: May 21st TIME: 4:45 PM - 5:30 PM LOCATION: Via Zoom

DATE: Wednesday, May 27 CHAMBER TIME: 9:00 am LOCATION: Via Zoom



sponsored by:

If you are interested in being a presenter at the Chamber Peer Power Series, please contact events@saskatoonchamber.com.





See you in the fall for a new line-up of speakers. Connect with the business community and enjoy great food and drinks at Chamber on Tap. Learn Entrepreneur Insights. DATE: First Wednesday of each month TIME: 4:30 pm LOCATION: LB Distillers




An introduction or refresher on how you can make the most out of your Chamber Membership. Every two month 3:30 pm at LB Distillers.


SOCIAL MEDIA Mayor Charlie Clark gives a progress report on innovation and inclusion at the City of Saskatoon. Hear Mayor Clark’s strategy to unlock the city’s full potential as he discusses smart growth, automation, sustainability, disruptive technology and a changing global economy.

Saskatoon and region offers many shining examples of organizations that have raised the standards for the community, industry at large and even the world in the quality of their products, services and economic and community contributions.

SPEAKER: Mayor Charlie Clark

Join us for an incredible evening of networking, cocktails and delectable cuisine as we honour the Saskatoon region's finest businesses!

DATE: Wednesday, September 9th TIME: 11:30 am - 1:00 pm LOCATION: TCU Place

DATE: Friday, October 2nd TIME: 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm LOCATION: TCU Place


MAY / JUNE 2020








Your Voice in Business As the voice of business for Saskatoon, the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce has implemented change and experienced success over the past three years since I became President & CEO. We’ve been busy increasing our presence, our advocacy efforts, our membership numbers and our brand’s impact.

The Chamber brings voices together to ensure all opinions are heard. Decisions are made using up-to-date information gathered from our community and based on the mandate I have from my Board of Directors and our Strategic Plan. I believe that clear, consistent and data-driven communication is key to achieving positive actions and outcomes that build our community’s capacity. Through a governance lens, I have continued to work with my board to identify opportunities for improved communication, transparency and processes. Operationally, these three years have advanced the people, processes, technology and structures necessary to ensure that the needs of our organization – and our members – are met. I’m currently the Chair of the Saskatchewan Business Council. During these turbulent times, this group is heading up economic recovery initiatives for Saskatchewan with our provincial government. On a federal level, I sit as a board member for the Chamber of Commerce Executives of Canada (CCEC), Chair the Canada Large Cities Peer Networking Group and have been accredited as a Chamber Executive through CCEC. On an international level, I sit on the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executive’s Major Cities Council where I interact with other Chambers from similar sized communities across North America. Forming connections with other Chambers, and their leaders, from jurisdictions both inside and outside of Canada is something I really value. This past fall, the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce was given the opportunity to partner with Saskatchewan’s Premier to roll-out the province’s Next Decade of Growth – a growth plan for Saskatchewan spanning from 2020 to 2030. The Chamber was also asked to support, and participate in, three trade missions to China, Japan and South Korea. Advocacy and providing engagement opportunities continues to top our priority list. The Chamber’s Center of Influence roundtable series connects our members with Ministers from the provincial government. We’ve also developed useful budget scorecards for members when provincial and municipal budgets are released. Plus, we developed a member-centric Task Force aimed at tackling specific issues in a three-meeting style format. On a municipal level, the Chamber is gearing up to host this year’s State of the City Address, by the Mayor of Saskatoon, later this fall.

Darla Lindbjerg, CEO Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce Image: Gina’s Portraits

We participated in the Mayor’s roundtable aimed at working on the development of a growth plan for the City of Saskatoon (you can read more about the roll-out of the Saskatoon region’s growth plan in this issue of Business Voice). The Chamber opens doors for our members by representing their voices with decision-makers and facilitating opportunities for you to engage. To ensure our members’ voices are heard, the Chamber has participated in a Day on the Hill meetings with federal government, senators and the opposition. The Chamber continues to build on important relationships developed with federal elected leaders, such as the Ministry of Small Business, Export Promotion & International Trade, the Ministry of Economic Development & Official Languages, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and others. In three years, our organization has experienced a lot of change. Some of this change includes a move to a new office location, enhancing the Chamber’s program offerings, the development of a new advocacy engagement process, and leadership of Small Business Week activities for Saskatoon’s business community. We have also introduced Chamber Trips as a new product offering, built an ambassador program for events, increased our social media engagement, and implemented a website redesign. These are just some highlights, but the point is that we’ve built capacity for our organization to move forward in a strong and sustainable way. I thank our members for their continued support throughout the last three years. Everything that our team has worked so hard for is you – our members!

Darla Lindbjerg, President & CEO, Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce BUSINESSVOICE SASKATOON

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NEW MEMBERS 222's Fastpitch Inc. Created to assist young players reach their softball goals by implementing proven training techniques and elite instruction benefiting every skill level of player from Mites to College. Dean Holoien

PO Box 40018 RPO Grasslands, Regina p: (506) 222-4137 w: 222sfastpitch.com Sports Club AIDS Saskatoon Inc. A harm reduction HIV service organization that serves central and northern Saskatchewan. We operate outreach, education and drop-in services. Jason Mercredi

Family Business Association of Saskatoon (FBAS) An engaged and supportive community of vibrant Saskatoon and area businesses, families and advisers who connect, share idea and learn from each others unique experiences. Rebecca May-Gorges

2366 Avenue C N, Saskatoon p: (306) 292-6361 w: www.familybusinesssaskatoon.ca Associations / Clubs / Organizations AND Non-Profit Organizations Mayfair Diagnostics A medical imaging company that provides community-based services at clinics in Saskatchewan, including Saskatoon. June Diment

1516 20th St W, Saskatoon p: (306) 242-5005 w: www.aidssaskatoon.ca Non-Profit Organizations Connect Architecture Architectural design consultancy company.

Kola Akinyemi

9 Capital Circle, Saskatoon p: (639) 470-3870 Architects Enterprises Holdings Inc. The largest transportation solutions provider offering car and truck rentals as well as ride sharing and car sales. In over 85 countries with more than 7,600 locations. Wade Peckham

2130 Airport Dr, Saskatoon p: (306) 251-1170 w: www.enterprise.ca Automobile - Lease / Rental / Sales AND Trucks - Rentals / Sales / Services

115-210 Avenue P S, Saskatoon p: (403) 385-0258 w: www.radiology.ca Health Care - Services / Supplies Metis Nation - Saskatchewan Secretariat Inc. Métis Nation Legislative Assembly is the governing authority of the Métis NationSaskatchewan (MN-S) and has the authority to enact legislation, regulation, rules and resolutions. Brandy LaRonde / Cheryl Wolfe

201-208 19th St W, Saskatoon p: (306) 227-0834 w: www.metisnationsk.com Associations / Clubs / Organizations Popeye's Supplements Saskatoon Canada's leading sports nutrition stores since 1989. Lowest supplement prices guaranteed!

Nathan Bodnarchuk

718D Circle Dr E, Saskatoon p: (204) 960-9861 Health & Fitness



(February & March 2020)

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Prairie Bliss Botanicals & Laser Ltd. Products are hand crafted in small batches to ensure the utmost care goes into each and every product. Only the highest quality organic and remedy-based ingredients that are made with love and care. Andy Hubbard / Tara Hubbard

9-3130 8th St E, Saskatoon p: (306) 652-0858 w: www.prairieblissbotanicals.com Cosmetic / Esthetic - Services / Supplies Push Interactions Established in 2009, CollegeMobile is a leading developer of powerful native smartphone and tablet apps across all major mobile platforms (Apple iOS, Android, BlackBerry, and Windows Phone).

Chad Jones

102-3550 Taylor St E, Saskatoon p: (800) 298-7081 w: www.pushinteractions.com Computers - Custom Software Rivercity Technology Services Ltd. Providing managed IT services, software and database development. Jeff Shirley

229-116 Research Dr, Saskatoon p: (306) 229-8888 w: www.rivercitytech.ca Technology Saskatoon Medical Imaging Committed to delivering expert healthcare whether your visit is for an x-ray, ultrasound, or mammogram, we’re focused on providing you with simply the best medical imaging services in Saskatoon. Schalk van Rensburg

3-3110 8th St E, Saskatoon p: (306) 477-1000 w: saskatoonmedicalimaging.ca Health Care - Services / Supplies


NEW MEMBERS SST Trucking Long haul flat-bed trucking company. Vicky Lail

327 70th St E, Saskatoon p: (306) 979-1988 w: www.ssttrucking.com Transportation Industry Sutherland Beer & Wine Store A local community business in Sutherland serving Saskatoon and area for over 60 years with local, domestic, and imported beer, wine, and spirits.

Sheldon Wasylenko

150-810 Central Ave, Saskatoon p: (306) 952-0900 w: www.sutherlandbeerandwine.ca Beverages

(February & March 2020)

TCC Building Construction Management Provides consulting services on building construction management architectural design and international real estate investment.

Zap Creative Branding and website design agency based out of Saskatoon that infuses energy, excitement, and purpose into companies of all sizes. We encapsulate your company’s core values.

p: (306) 880-9439 Consultants AND Real Estate – Services

1002A Central Ave, Saskatoon p: (306) 261-8351 w: zapcreative.ca Graphic Design

Tak Cho

Union Freight Forwarders Limited Freight forwarders and freight broker.

Hannah Wheeler

Roland Okpoko

B109-415 Hunter Rd, Saskatoon p: (306) 361-6071 w: www.unionfreightforwarders.com Transportation Industry

FREE Conexus business webinars!

Managing Cash Flow

May 12

10:30 am – 12:00 pm

Stress Management

May 28

2:00 pm – 3:30 pm

GST for Small Business

June 9

1:30 pm – 3:30 pm

Financial Fluency (Part 2)

June 18

9:30 am – 11:00 am

To register for upcoming webinars, and view past content visit

Brought to you by



MAY / JUNE 2020 7


MEMBER RENEWALS (Paid in February & March 2020) 101047819 Sask Ltd. 101293257 SK Ltd. ACE Manufacturing Inc. Action Mechanical Inc. Adecco Employment Services Ltd. All West Veterinary Clinic Allegro Montessori School Animal Protection Services of Saskatchewan AON Aspen Films Jenkins Media Associated Appraisal Co. Associated Engineering (Sask) Ltd. Athabasca Basin Development Atrium Dental Prof. Corp. AutoLogics Repair Ayden Kitchen and Bar Bazaar Novelty BBK Engineering Saskatoon Ltd. BDM Healthware Inc.

Benesh Bitz & Company Beverly Cantin Blairmore Media Inc. BN Steel & Metals Inc. BNI Saskatchewan BNT Sales Agency Limited Booster Juice Braid Flooring and Window Fashions Ltd. Braschuk Oilfield Broadway Theatre Bruce's Cycle Works Brunskill Pharmacy Buddwil Enterprises Ltd. Burnt Orange Solutions Ltd. Business Development Bank of Canada Butler Byers Insurance Ltd. Cambiar Consulting Canadian Brewhouse - Mcclocklin Rd Canadian Brewhouse - Preston Ave

Write your next CHAPTER Life at Stonebridge Crossing is where the next part of your life story begins. Call today or visit StonebridgeCrossing.ca to arrange your personal visit and be our guest for lunch.

102 Wellman Crescent Saskatoon | 306-974-7990 StonebridgeCrossing.ca


MAY / JUNE 2020

Canadian Linen and Uniform Service Canadian Red Cross Carter Holdings Ltd. Catholic Family Services of Saskatoon Century 21 Fusion Choice Payment Solutions Churchill Dog Groomers CIBC CIBC Wood Gundy City of Saskatoon - City Manager's Office City Perks Ltd. Co.Labs Colony Coffee & Tea Combine World Complete Technologies Compugen Inc. Connect Energy Conscious Choice Personal & Professional Development Conseil économique et coopératif de la Saskatchewan Cosmopolitan Industries Ltd. Courtyard by Marriott Saskatoon Airport Cowan Imaging Group CPA Saskatchewan CRAVINGS maternity-baby-kids Cubbon Advertising Cuelenaere, Kendall, Katzman & Watson Curbie D & I Health Naturally Dan McEachern CPA Prof. Corp. DancEgypt Dance Co. Dave Dutchak Delta Air Lines Des Nedhe Development LP DG Industrial Ltd. Diamond Carpet Cleaning Digitex Canada Display Systems International Donald Physiotherapy Dr. P. LaBelle Medical P.C. Inc. Dr. Robert Pekush Medical Prof. Corp. Dr. SanVicente Medical Prof. Corp. Dufresne Furniture & Appliance Dylan Pearson Dynacare Insurance Solutions Eb's Source For Adventure Ebenezer Baptist Church Elizabeth Ireland, Communicator EXIMPRO Family Service Saskatoon

NEWSMAKERS Fifth Business Mediation and Organizational Consulting Final Draft Co. Ltd. Fleet Guide Truck & Trailer Repair Ltd. FlexNetworks FSIN - Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations Full Line Ag Ltd. Full Throttle Sports & Leisure Inc. Fuse Design Inc. Gabriel Dumont Institute General Management Services Ltd. Ghost Transportation Services Global Gathering Place Global Institute for Food Security Grant Thornton LLP Habitat for Humanity Saskatoon Hanson Lake Sands Corporation Harden & Huyse Chocolates Hardpressed Print Studio Inc. Harris Greenaway Communications Ltd. Haven Builders Inc. Heagy LLP Henry Downing Architects Hertz Canada Ltd. Heyday Communications Inc. Holly Decker Makeup Artistry Home Instead Senior Care HomeStyles Home Show Horizon Hudson Energy Humboldt Electric Ltd. HX Industrial Control ICR Commercial Real Estate Ideas Inc. IMP Canada & Mercan Group of Companies Indus Travels Inc. International Minerals Innovation Institute Jancy Holdings Ltd. Janzen Heavy Equipment Repair Jazz Custom Cabinets Ltd. Jennifer Bain, B.Comm, CFP, EPC Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Foundation Inc. JNE Welding Limited Partnership K.C. Charities Inc. Kayton Enterprise Ltd. Ken Cheveldayoff - MLA Saskatoon Willowgrove Kiaro Kinzel Cadrin & Associates Consulting Inc. Klassique Designs L & S Bookkeeping Services La Federation des francophones de Saskatoon Lawrence Finishing Inc.

Lead Management Consulting Inc. Legacy Developments Inc. Legacy Homes Ltd. Liberty Ventures Lift Accounting Little Grouse Restaurant Inc. Mackie Physiotherapy Marathon Construction (Sask) Ltd. Market Mall Auto Service McCabe Insurance McClelland Debusschere Med Hack Enterprises Incorporated Meidl Honda - Oakwood Nissan Metric Design Centre Michelle Kormos Miller Thomson LLP Mitchell & Sons Farm Ltd. MLT Aikins LLP Mobile Klinik Morris Interactive National Bank of Canada NexGen Energy Ltd. NICS Ltd. Nieszner Industrial Services Inc. North Saskatchewan Independent Living Centre Nouryon Chemicals Ltd. Nutrien Objectified Software Inc. Outbound Distribution Inc. Pawlovich Chiropractic PIC Investment Group Inc. Pick Nic's Catering & Fine Foods Ltd. Pillar Properties Corp. Powerhouse Endeavours Group Prairie Roots Dental Studio Prairie Sky Outfitters Prairie Therapists and Trainers Inc. Prosper Financial Rawlco Radio - News Talk 650 / ROCK 102 / C95 Ray's Moving & Storage Co. Ltd. Regan Meier Resident Doctors of Saskatchewan Richland Agriculture Group Corp. Ricoh Canada Inc. Riide Riversdale Business Improvement District Rock Creek Tap and Grill Royal LePage Varsity S & S Delivery Service Ltd. Sandman Hotel Sask Pork Saskatchewan Abilities Council Saskatchewan Heart Centre Saskatchewan Institute of Agrologists

Saskatchewan Polytechnic Saskatchewan Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Saskatoon Boiler Mfg. Co. Ltd. Saskatoon Clayworks Saskatoon Fastprint LP Saskatoon Housing Authority Saskatoon Industry Education Council Saskatoon Oral Surgery Saskatoon Sexual Assault & Information Centre Saskatoon Youth for Christ Saskatoon Zoo Foundation SaskEnergy Inc. SaskPower Scotia Wealth Management Shakespeare On The Saskatchewan Festival Inc. Shoeless Joes Sports Grill Showtime Glass Inc. SkinSense Dermatology Spring River Holding St. Paul's Hospital Staples – Circle Dr. Steelmet Supply Sticks and Stones Restaurant Inc. Stonebridge Crossing Retirement Community Stuart Commercial SUCCESS Office Systems Susan Walker Realty PC Taverna Italian Kitchen TCU Financial Group The Gallery / art placement inc. The Griffin Takeaway The Rent-It Store The Urban Farmhouse Three Farmers Toast Magazine Touchstone Development Corp Travel Masters Saskatoon Tuff Turf Growers Ltd. Untapped Potential Business Consulting Ltd. Virtex Grain Exchange Ltd. WEED MAN Western Premium Property Management Inc. World of Spas Wright Construction Western Inc. Yellow Quill Holdings Inc. YMCA of Saskatoon YWCA Saskatoon YXE Immigration Inc. Zed Engineering Inc.


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BN Steel & Metals

BN Steel & Metals is currently one of Saskatchewan's largest recyclers of scrap metal. The material we recycle ends up in many countries where the metal is then melted down and formed into consumer products such as automobiles, construction materials and even computers and cell phones. Our focus has been to continually improve on creating a clean, welcoming atmosphere – ixnaying the term “scrap yard” in favour of “metal recycling facility. ” Our statues (being the Transformers, the Globe, and our giant T-Rex) are displayed as a fun way to promote

metal recycling, creating interest for future generations of recyclers! Spring clean up season is here! We accept ANYTHING metal, appliances, and electronics! 12 - 30 yard bins are readily available, and our free drop off area is also available 24/7 for your convenience! BN has launched a fundraising campaign for organizations such as businesses, sports teams, schools, etc., offering special pricing on the metal that they bring in to help them reach their fundraising goals. Further information and applications can be found online at bnmetals.com/about/fundraising/.

Brunsdon Lawrek & Associates

EDI Environmental Dynamics Inc. Our team of biologists at EDI Environmental Dynamics Inc. in Saskatoon delivers practical, cost-effective environmental consulting services for projects all across Saskatchewan. Our services include terrestrial and aquatic assessments, environmental monitoring, and permitting in many sectors, such as power, renewable energy, oil and gas, mining, 10 BUSINESSVOICE SASKATOON

transportation, and urban development. We recently moved to accommodate our growing Saskatoon team. We are now located at 2911A Cleveland Avenue in Saskatoon. In 2019, EDI celebrated its 25th anniversary – building on our reputation as people you can talk to and experts you can trust, who focus on what matters. www.edynamics.com

MAY / JUNE 2020

Providing professional real estate advice to its clients for over 100 years, Brunsdon Lawrek & Associates has recently partnered with a Regina firm to readily serve our entire province. With offices in Saskatoon and Regina, we now possess the most comprehensive real estate database in the province. Brunsdon Lawrek & Associates offers residential, commercial, agricultural appraisals, market rent studies, property tax consulting, reserve fund studies, arbitration, and litigation support services. As the most experienced and diversified real estate appraisal and consulting firm in the province, we look forward to providing the highest quality service and guidance to our clients! www.brunsdonlawrek.com



PINTER & Associates Ltd.

Loraas Organics

Organic waste accounts for up to 70% of what Saskatchewan businesses discard as garbage daily. By opting into a composting program, companies can effortlessly lower their Greenhouse Gas emissions and illustrate environmental commitments to customers. Loraas Organics is the first in the province to operate aerated static pile composting technology. Self-contained environmental controls, including temperature and airflow, allow us to process year-round to creating a useable product in 8 to 13 weeks. Our program accepts proteins and bones, grains, and solidified-dairy products; traditionally excluded from conventional composting systems. “We’ll take your leftovers!” Call us or visit www.loraas.ca/organics for details.

PINTER & Associates Ltd. (PINTER) is an award winning, innovative, multidisciplinary engineering consulting services company. Established in 1998, PINTER has offices in Saskatoon (Head Office) and Regina and provides services throughout Western Canada. Our services include municipal infrastructure, the environment, geotechnical engineering, First Nation services, land development, and safety consulting. Our projects include environmental site

assessments and remediation, indoor air quality investigations, water and wastewater treatment, landfill, roads, culverts, subdivisions, drainage assessments and plans, building foundations and slope stability, safety programs and safety manuals, etc. Since 2004, PINTER has been the recipient of more than 10 peer awards for innovation and quality of work. We wish everyone to stay safe and stay healthy through this CoVid19 emergency. www.pinter.ca

Sheri Willick, Coldwell Banker Signature

SUBMIT YOUR STORIES TO: bv@saskatoonchamber.com

Sheri Willick, a local real estate agent with Coldwell Banker Signature is honoured to have been awarded the 2019 CMHC Saskatoon & Region REALTOR® of the year award. This award is given annually in order “To recognize an active member who demonstrates outstanding leadership and dedication to the real estate industry through local board

involvement and community service.” Sheri has a long history of community work and volunteering in Saskatoon and is currently the Chairperson-Elect of the Saskatchewan REALTORS® Association, also chairing their Government Relations, Governance and Audit Committees. www.sheriwillick.com


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MEMBERS IN THE NEWS Suncatcher Solar

Suncatcher Solar is a family business that grew out of a passion for renewable energy and solar home design. Angelika Ortlepp started the business in 2003 when she designed and built her own off-grid solar home that was also the subject for her Masters thesis in electrical engineering. Suncatcher has expanded to include a full-time team of installers and electricians and is a registered electrical contractor. We have worked with many brands of inverters, panels and racking. We have the experience to choose the best technology for applications from residential to large farm and commercial operations. We offer turn-key systems with all work done in-house, including electrical, screw pile installation and trenching. Co-owners Angelika Ortlepp and her son, Rohan Campbell provide project management and system design. Call 1-887-441-2355 for a free consultation or visit us at www.suncatchersolar.com.

Western Heritage

Western Heritage is celebrating 30 years of providing services in Saskatoon, in Canada and internationally. Western Heritage provides services to the resource Industry, governments, towns and cities. Areas where Western Heritage provides exceptional value and experience are in cultural heritage management, including archaeology, and our environmental monitoring platform known as the EFMP. The EFMP

Western Carpet One

For 46 years, Western Carpet One has been part of Saskatoon’s great business community. From day one our business was built on the foundation of family, community and a genuine commitment to our customers. Fortysix years later that culture has not changed. Western Carpet One exists to help inspire people to transform their home or office space into something special. We specialize in every type of flooring from Ceramic Tile, Hardwood, Laminate, LVP Carpet. Today, Western Carpet One is run by co-owners Justin Bussiere, Adam Brown, David Epp and David Roden along with a team of 19 staff members and 30 installation professionals all committed to making sure our customers have memorable shopping experience. www.westerncarpetonesaskatoon.com 12 BUSINESSVOICE SASKATOON

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uses machine learning and automation to extract current environmental information from diverse sources of data including satellite imagery. Archaeology Department also provides ground penetrating radar services. Our newest service line is UAVs. Our UAVs are equipped with optical, thermal and lidar sensors to meet project needs. www.westernheritage.ca



Waymarc has been proudly serving Western Canada since 1975. With a branch office and distribution centre in Saskatoon, our focus is to help companies work more efficiently and at a higher profit margin. Waymarc partners with and distributes for Canadian manufacturers. We provide Best in Class products and services for the industrial, agricultural, institutional, transportation, and automotive markets. Using a consultative approach, we assess your current facilities and

listen to your needs to create solutions that will achieve your business aims. Our service teams collaborate with your company representatives and plan a professional installation to be done right and on time. Lastly, Waymarc provides repair and reconfiguration services on all types of racking and shelving systems. Consider us your one-stop-shop for your business fixture needs! www.waymarc.com

ZED Engineering Inc.



At ZED Engineering Inc. we understand that change isn’t easy. However, it’s necessary to adopt change in order to survive and thrive in the future. Technological advances in electric vehicles are a reality that will change most forms of transport in nearly all industries soon. Our small team at ZED has been designing cutting edge electric drive platforms for over

12 years that are at work in industry today. We offer a wide range of engineering, consulting, prototype and manufacturing services that can give your company the tools it needs to harness these rapidly emerging, smart drive technologies now. www.zedengineering.ca



CITY Mayor Charlie Clark Wednesday, September 9th 11:30 am - 1:00 pm TCU Place


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“When a little extra coverage gave everyone a reason to smile.”

Real benefits for your business

Real benefits for your business Request a quote by calling 306.808.2280 OR

visit Employee Benefits with a Difference. 14 BUSINESSVOICE SASKATOON

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Simple. Stable. Smart.


Paving The Path For The Future Economy by Mouneeb Shahid, founder of 2Web.ca The COVID-19 crisis has forced businesses to work, transact and think differently. Fundamental business operations have had to be eliminated or transformed for the sake of survival. Many have had to undergo a forced adoption of digital transformation at some level. Some of these changes may be short-term, but the impact on how we do business and transact with customers will continue to exist long-term. In such a state of crisis, it is crucial to consider proactive steps on how you can sustain operations, ideally without compromising customer experience. Inevitably we may not be able to meet in person due to "social distancing." However, that should not stop us from extending our personality by being customer-focused. In today's day and age, we have the privilege of using digital technology that can provide the next best thing to realism. We can stay connected, even if we are disconnected. No doubt, it is a testing time, but it is times like these where we need to shed off our corporate shells and expose empathy to our community, our customers and those that surround us. We cannot afford to be fearful of the unknown, but instead, need to be open to a drastic change that will pave the path of our future economy. For many business owners, this would mean changing their mindset to be more customer-focused rather than product-

focused. Organizational structures will need to restructure to adopt significant change management so that to deliver a dynamic business environment. Critical decisions would need to be made regarding digital technologies that can not only sustain the crisis today but propel them for growth in the future. We have seen businesses updating their processes for the sake of the safety of their employees and customers. Yet, we need to ensure that customer experience is not compromised but in some way or form enhanced. Digitization of brick and mortar stores can eliminate the need to visit a physical store. Small retail businesses can take advantage of e-commerce portals that industry giants use to scale. For many businesses, their previous revenue model may not work in the current crisis. It is an unfortunate state to be in, but it is also an opportunity to rethink, adapt and pivot their business to

serve what the current market demands. No wonder our history tells us that some of the most significant innovations happen during periods of recession. This period may be the best opportunity to evolve your product or service. The 2Web team has worked with many businesses in the past to help them achieve success using digital. To assist businesses that have been impacted with this current state of crisis, the 2Web team has put out a course on the Fundamentals of Digital Transformation. We have made this available for free to any business owner or company that would like to learn more about adopting digital technologies to sustain their business. To get a tuition waiver and gain free access, please email info@2web.ca with the "Digital Transformation Course" in the subject line.


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VIDO-InterVac at the Foref ront of COVID-19 Research “An Advanced Facility Built for This Type of Pandemic”

Image: Gord Waldner

by Elizabeth Ireland


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The Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization-International Vaccine Centre (VIDO-InterVac) at the University of Saskatchewan works with international partners to study human and animal pathogens. In this time of novel coronavirus (COVID-19), it’s a world-class facility at the foref ront of global vaccine research and development. Located right here in Saskatoon, VIDO-InterVac is one of the largest and most advanced containment level 3 facilities in the world. It previously seems to have fallen under the radar of most Saskatoon residents. Today, we can all be proud that VIDO-InterVac’s research benefits the Canadian public, provincial and federal governments, and the global research community overall.

Dr. Hodgson has been with VIDO-InterVac in a management role since 2006. His wife is a physician in anesthesiology with the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the couple has three children between the ages of 7 and 14. As we know, in December 2019 a novel coronavirus was identified as the cause of pneumonia in a cluster of patients in Wuhan, China. Due to its rapid global spread, the coronavirus outbreak was characterized as a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) in March 2020. There are currently no vaccines or approved medicines to treat or prevent COVID-19. VIDO-InterVac’s decades of virus research and vaccine development experience meant it was quickly granted approval from the Public Health Agency of Canada to work with the novel coronavirus (SARSCoV-2). Clinical samples were obtained from Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto through the National Microbiology Lab in Winnipeg and the VIDO-InterVac team led by Dr. Darryl Falzarano immediately isolated the virus, began developing animal disease models in ferrets and now hamsters and developed a candidate vaccine. Ferrets were a model used during SARS. Now, VIDO-InterVac is the first lab in the country to have a vaccine candidate in animal testing. The vaccine was made in February and

Image: Debra Marshall

VIDO-InterVac’s mission is “to conduct research and develop vaccines and related products with key national and international partners for the prevention and control of human and animal disease.” Very diverse, VIDO-InterVac employs approximately 170 highly skilled people from 26 different countries. Operating support comes from the Government of Canada (through CFI Major Science Initiatives) and the Government of Saskatchewan.

Dr. Paul Hodgson is VIDO-InterVac’s Associate Director of Business Development. Born and raised in Ontario, Dr. Hodgson earned his BSc and MSc in Pharmacology from Dalhousie University, his PhD in Medicine from Memorial University (where he studied Hepatitis B) and his MBA from the University of Alberta.


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COVE R STORY (MERS) coronavirus, and tuberculosis in humans and animals. Most recently, VIDO-InterVac received approval to conduct research on the African Swine Fever (ASF) virus, which has devastated swine populations in Asia and poses a huge risk to North America’s pork industry. VIDO-InterVac was the first non-government facility in Canada approved to work with ASF. “I believe that VIDO-InterVac has historically experienced the goodwill of the people of Saskatchewan because so many people still have close ties to the agricultural community. Saskatoon residents recognize all the work VIDO-InterVac has done developing animal vaccines and the benefit this provides to our province’s agricultural industry,” says Dr. Hodgson.

Image: Debra Marshall

“Within our team, everyone has a unique skill set and it’s an industrywide fight to get the best people. Working in a containment level 3 facility means that employees experience an increased level of stress and it takes an increased amount of time to do things. There is no room for error. In terms of a pandemic situation, a facility like this cannot be built reactively.”

the team expects to know in about four weeks whether the vaccine works in an animal model. Optimistically, clinical testing of this vaccine in humans could start as early as this fall.

We are lucky that a committed and talented research community is working around the clock to respond to this national emergency. As Canadians, facilities like VIDO-InterVac can bolster confidence that our government’s action in research and vaccine development is happening in real-time. Dr. Hodgson notes that with the prominence of COVID-19 research, VIDO-InterVac’s research into other pathogens, that was previously underway, has to be wound down and those personnel are reallocated to COVID-19 work.

On March 23, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that VIDO-InterVac will receive $12 million to help address Canada’s vaccine manufacturing capacity, as well as $11.3 million for continued operational funding for its containment level 3 facility. This funding is part of the federal government’s $275-million fund for COVID-19 health research and the announcement received international attention.

Image: NIAID-RML flickr.com

“We have the government’s trust and respect at VIDO-InterVac, and we have the security and containment level to be ready when a new pathogen hits. We have the largest, most advanced facility in Canada with unmatched capacity, combined with a history of visionary leaders,” says Dr. Hodgson. Its containment level 3 facilities include eight laboratories, 18 large animal isolation rooms and intensive 24/7 security measures. There is only one containment level 4 facility (the highest level of biocontainment) in Canada and that is the Public Health Agency of Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg. Previously, VIDO-InterVac’s team has targeted highly pathogenic avian influenza, Zika virus, Middle East respiratory syndrome BUSINESSVOICE SASKATOON

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COVE R STORY Dr. Hodgson has thoughts on COVID-19 in comparison to other pathogens that the team has worked with. “New diseases are always emerging, and 75 percent of pathogens emerge in animals first. There is speculation on why zoonotic transmission happens, whether that’s deforestation or live animal markets and bazaars in Asia. We’ve had the opportunity to work with multiple coronaviruses in the past, including SARS and MERS.” “Through social isolation, our main goals are to not overwhelm the healthcare system and, secondly, to not have a peak number of cases. If we achieve these goals, it provides additional time to develop a vaccine and go through the required clinical stages.”

Image: David Stobbe

What’s next for VIDO-InterVac? Longer term, the team is also developing a vaccine manufacturing facility to augment an important innovation gap in vaccine development for Canada and beyond. This would establish affordable and accessible vaccine manufacturing facility to fill a Canadian – and now global – need.


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Concludes Dr. Hodgson, “we are here for the better good.” www.vido.org


Working for You The Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce continues to actively advocate on behalf of its membership. Recent items to highlight include the following: Roundtable with the Honourable Jim Carr In early March, the Chamber hosted a roundtable event with the Honourable Jim Carr, Special Representative for the Prairies. Mr. Carr sought participants’ feedback to determine “how the Prairie provinces can become a leader in the next chapter of building the Canadian economy and how they can contribute to the continued growth of the Canadian brand?” The discussion primarily focused on growth opportunities and capitalizing on the assets and abundance of our province. Some shared themes were meaningful social and economic reconciliation with Indigenous

peoples; fostering technological growth; the creation of new superclusters; the future of the workforce; and the export infrastructure necessary to establish strong and successful trading opportunities. “Saskatchewan is in a strong position to be a leader when looking towards the future growth of our country. It’s crucial that we are educating the rest of the country and

the world on the multitude of advantages and attributes of our province,” said Darla Lindbjerg, President & CEO of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce. “Moving forward, we must continue to have these important discussions to make sure that Ottawa recognizes that the Prairie provinces will play a crucial part in the future growth of our country.” The Chambers policy recommendations have centered around three key priorities: 1) Economic stimulus and access to cash flow 2) Government intervention to reduce overhead costs 3) Introduction of labor incentives

COVID-19 and the Chamber As this is being written, we are in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis. This is a situation that the Chamber is closely monitoring as it rapidly evolves. Individuals are being asked to practice social distancing and many businesses have switched to working remotely when able. Others are maneuvering in an attempt to still provide their products and services during these tough times.

The Chamber has been working with government officials and key stakeholders to keep our membership up-to-date on current developments and to advocate for Saskatoon’s business community at large. We recognize the need for programming and policies to ensure employees are secure and that businesses remain viable to rebound as soon as the crisis has subsided.

Through these main priorities the Chamber has advocated for the formation of a provincially funded Rent Bank; economic stimulus for the airport and tourism industry; grants for small- and medium-sized businesses; temporary reduction of utility bills and taxes; and a cost sharing program of employees with employers to avoid layoffs. It is through these programs, and government collaboration, that our business community will remain resilient and will persevere through the COVID-19 crisis, resulting in a more robust economy in the future.


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Electronic Recycling Association

Every single individual keeps some form of obsolete device, either in storage or in a drawer, afraid to ever dispose of it due to the sensitive data that may be residing on the item. Fear no more, the Electronic Recycling Association (ERA) has been around for over

15 years, protecting your data by erasing it either through physical destruction or through a software-based solution. We have become one of Canada’s most active participants in the fight against E-Waste and the ever-growing digital divide. The ERA is a global non-

profit organization that has been reducing unnecessary electronic waste since 2004. The association reduces adverse environmental contributions through electronic recycling and repurposing through the donation of electronics and other IT equipment; providing underprivileged communities with the equipment needed to participate in the digital economy. With drop off locations and pick up services across Canada and the US, the ERA provides a meaningful way for organizations and individuals to deal with their old computer equipment in a safe and secure manner that matches or exceeds government standards. Interested in your companies ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) growth? Contact ERA today and make a difference. Call 1.877.9EWASTE or visit ERA.ca for more information.

Gordon Tootoosis Nikaniwin Theatre

For many years the Gordon Tootoosis Nikaniwin Theatre (formerly Saskatchewan Native Theatre Company) in the City of Saskatoon has had patrons ranging from 10 people to 400 people in any given theatre stage since 1999. Patrons have enjoyed and created audience traditions for many of the productions over the years. Built on the minds of late Gordon Tootoosis and Tantoo Cardinal, the company began as a Circle of Voices for indigenous high risk youth to enroll and learn about live theatre delivery. Be it 22 BUSINESSVOICE SASKATOON

from composing a script with an established mentoring experience with indigenous playwrights, to stage combat, workshops on acting, sound creation, set design, and costume instruction. Over the years GTNT has had over 100 participants in the program, some of which enjoy careers in their chosen field of the arts. Our company produces many pieces as well on serious issues that range from child welfare, gangs, indigenous health, women in leadership, historical pieces, the famous Rez Christmas stories, missing and

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MMIWG, and indigenous food systems. GTNT affords these possibilities by accessing sponsorship, grants, with the economic benefits of having audiences in our city pay to attend. We are satisfied what we do help the local economy through hotel, restaurants, gas, shopping malls not only for patrons but visiting artists provincially, nationally, or internationally. We love theatre! Visit us at www.gtnt.ca

Habitat for Humanity No matter who we are or where we come from, we all deserve to have a decent life. We deserve to feel strength and stability day after day. We deserve to know we have the power to take care of ourselves and build our own futures. At Habitat for Humanity, this is what unites us. Through shelter, we empower. Our shared vision is a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Because you, me, we — we’re all humans. And every single one of us deserves the opportunity for a better future. When the community gets behind a social enterprise like Habitat Saskatoon, good things happen. The measured (2015) social return on each $1 invested in Habitat is $4 in benefits accrued to society. Families report improved health, education outcomes and other improvements to well-being such as improved civic engagement. Habitat Saskatoon is a unique, low-cost delivery model that builds homes with donated labour and materials. It offsets costs and overhead through families’ mortgage


payments and earnings from the ReStore. As our community emerges from the impacts of the pandemic, we continue to build strength, stability and self-reliance for

families in Saskatoon and globally. Join us! HabitatSaskatoon.ca ReStoreSaskatoon.ca

Learning Disabilities Association of Saskatchewan The Learning Disabilities Association of Saskatchewan (LDAS) was established 1971. We promote the education, employment, wellness and human rights of those with Learning Disabilities and ADHD.

LDAS is committed to a strong ethic of timely, reliable, and effective service to clients and stakeholders. While our targeted population is persons with learning disabilities and ADHD, we have worked with

individuals with physical disabilities, anxiety, depression, visual and hearing impairment, and personality disorders. Our clients have a background in all aspects of society; however, our overall services show 42% presence of Immigrants, newcomers to Canada, and persons of Indigenous ancestry. Our services include: Academic Strategy, ADHD Coaching, Adult 12, Arrowsmith Program, Behaviour Therapy, Children Summer Camps, Employability, GED Program, LEGO© Club, Neurofeedback, Psychoeducational Assessments, and Tutoring; as well as parenting support. Our many success stories speak to the exceptional services that we provide at LDAS. As one of our many clients has said, “Getting my GED Diploma was the first good thing that I have done for myself in a long time. I was supported here. It wasn’t easy but I knew I wasn’t alone.” For more information please visit www. LDAS.org or call 306.652.4114 and follow us on Facebook and Instagram.


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Growing Together:

A vision for Saskatoon’s new economy by Elizabeth Ireland


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On March 6, 2020, the Saskatoon Regional Economic Development Authority (SREDA) released Saskatoon’s first economic growth strategy at its annual SREDA Forum. The strategic document is entitled Growing Together: A vision for Saskatoon’s new economy. Growing Together was developed by SREDA, with considerable input from various stakeholders across the city. In addition to a steering committee, six sectoral roundtables contributed to the document’s development. The sectors represented were agriculture, Indigenous, manufacturing, mining, research, and technology. The whole process of forming a coordinated approach to Saskatoon’s economic growth took just under a year. Darla Lindbjerg, President & CEO of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce, says Growing Together is “a foundational document, as we look to the future of our city and focus on growth.” Lindbjerg points out that the Chamber represents 1,500 members who employ approximately 87,000 people in the Saskatoon area, so economic growth is always top-of-mind.

Alex Fallon is the President & CEO of SREDA. “Creating an economic growth strategy was something SREDA was thinking about for awhile. We needed to take the time to identify, verify and agree on our priorities as a city,” says Fallon. According to Growing Together, “Saskatoon is at a pivotal time in our history, one where we have the opportunity to engage in meaningful economic reconciliation with the growing Indigenous population of Saskatoon and develop a talented local workforce.” “We recognize that SREDA and the City of Saskatoon can’t control economic growth, but we can focus our efforts to give it the best chance around certain areas. That’s why industry roundtables were instrumental in informing, guiding and shaping the process of developing the areas of focus for a local economic growth strategy for Saskatoon,” says Fallon. According to Growing Together, “With half the world’s potash reserves and almost a quarter of its uranium production, our province is a leader in mining. Though once known as the breadbasket of Canada, Saskatchewan uses its vast farmland – 40 percent of Canada’s total – to act as the world’s top exporter of many crops in addition to wheat, from lentils to canola. Saskatchewan is also rich in energy. We are Canada’s second largest producer of oil and third largest of natural gas.” “There is dramatic pressure on our province’s resource and agricultural sectors, as stakeholders change and adapt to add value to their products,” says Mayor Clark.

Image: james_nagarbaul - Pixabay

Charlie Clark, the Mayor of Saskatoon, describes the formation of Growing Together as collaborative. “We came together and had a number of conversations with business leaders, educational institutions, the tech sector, Indigenous community leaders and others to ask the question – where is Saskatoon’s economy going? How can we position ourselves to succeed and create opportunities in our local economy?”

The strategic document has four focus areas: continue to be a global leader in natural resources; be a center where industries grow through innovation; be a leader in Indigenous economic reconciliation; and be known as Canada’s most livable mid-sized city. Mayor Clark notes that these four focus areas are “very much intertwined.”


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While Growing Together was released before COVID-19 was declared a pandemic, Mayor Clark notes this is an opportunity to present Saskatoon’s “role in the world and why our city is relevant to what the world needs right now.” He cites VIDO-InterVac at the University of Saskatchewan and its leadership as a world-class facility at the forefront of global vaccine research and development for COVID-19. Growing Together reinforces Saskatoon’s competitive advantage in technology and innovation. “A wide variety of other organizations dedicated to research and development in biosciences are located on campus at Innovation Place, one of North America’s most

Image: SREDA

President & CEO SREDA

“While we don’t know how long this state of emergency will last, we can still galvanize around the priorities set out in Growing Together. Those Saskatoon businesses that can, are adapting. When we return as a city, after the pandemic, the four focus areas we have set out will be key components in guiding our economic recovery,” says Fallon. In summary, Lindbjerg describes Growing Together as having “a nice parallel with the Chamber and our advocacy areas on behalf of our members – competitiveness, efficiency and growth.” The full SREDA document can be found at https://sreda.com/ wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Growth-Vision_online-PDF-2.pdf

This is an opportunity to present Saskatoon’s “role in the world and why our city is relevant to what the world needs right now.” Charlie Clark Mayor City of Saskatoon

Growing Together is “a foundational document, as we look to the future of our city and focus on growth.” Darla Lindbjerg

President & CEO Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce

Image: City of Saskatoon

“Creating an economic growth strategy was something SREDA was thinking about for awhile. We needed to take the time to identify, verify and agree on our priorities as a city,” Alex Fallon

successful university technology parks. VIDO-InterVac is one of these organizations, focusing on developing solutions to prevent and control infectious diseases.”


Image: Gina's Portraits

Mayor Clark, Fallon and Lindbjerg all agree that being known as Canada’s most livable mid-sized city goes hand-in-hand with creating an optimal climate where business can thrive. Challenges for Saskatoon will always be its cold winters and its geographic distance from large cities. “Livability is really important to a lot of people in terms of where they choose to live and work,” says Fallon.

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Tech Growth Opportunities in Troubled Times by Elizabeth Ireland

Over Zoom, Jordan Dutchak, Executive Director of Co.Labs, admits that these are challenging times for the Canadian tech ecosystem with the COVID-19 pandemic and a potential recession on the horizon. Always one to look at the silver lining, Dutchak mentions five Co.Labs companies that are “symbiotic to the current situation” and presented with growth opportunities during these difficult times. A spring 2019 Co.Launch Cohort winner, Saskatoon-based BetterCart.ca is currently the only website that compares aggregate grocery prices in Canada. Groceries, and cost savings, are top-of-mind of most Canadians these days. "People are suffering economically, and now more than ever due to the effects of COVID-19. BetterCart can assist Canadians, as our technology compares food prices across major grocery chains, and helps people reduce their grocery bills every time they shop. People see significant growth

potential for BetterCart, and are looking to our technology as a key tool to help Canadians navigate these tough economic times both during and after this pandemic,” says Melanie Morrison, Founder & CEO of BetterCart Technologies Inc. With layoffs and social distancing, equipment theft is an increasing issue for individuals and larger companies with unattended worksites. The BeeSecure asset tracker, powered by a mobile-friendly web app, is a safety tool that can be used to address rural and urban crime (beesecure.ca). “We expect an increase in the need to track equipment now being stored remotely with employees working from home, or at higher risk of theft due to economic factors and lack of normal controls. There is also a safety factor with employees now working alone instead of in groups, so our rugged BeeSecure GPS trackers present an affordable solution for knowing where your remote equipment workers are, in the event they

do not check in or have an incident out of the office preventing them from calling for help,” says Jeff Shirley, Founder and CEO of Rivercity Innovations. “Additionally, there is an increase in bicycle use already happening for commuters. Our new BeeSecure GPS tracker coming out this summer is designed specifically for bicycles and municipal government use related to bike lanes,” adds Shirley. Regina-based Hyon Software won as part of the Co.Launch Cohort in fall 2018. By connecting used goods owners with online “power-sellers,” Hyon facilitates the connection, transaction and transparency from pick-up to payment. The platform enables anyone to generate passive income from the sale of their used household goods. Hyon also empowers “power-sellers” through inventory and sales campaign management tools. “Hyon is well-positioned to assist Canadians through this upcoming recession. A depressed economy triggers a growth pattern in the used goods market. Hyon is better enabling communities to rid of used items. By connecting item owners with online sellers, we're making it easy to make money on that the items people no longer use,” says Kristy Ehman, CEO of Hyon Software Inc. “This is a great time to make money and connections in the social consigners space. Hyon is very well-positioned,” says Dutchak. Omnee matches homeowners with contractors, tradespeople and other home service professionals online – striving to make this process easier and more convenient. Anecdotally, home renovations are often a popular choice during recessions, when the real estate market is less stable. “A benefit to be a pre-revenue startup is that Omnee is in an agile position. Fortunately, we have less overhead, and our product development doesn’t need to come to a halt during a crisis like this. Also, a slowdown in the home improvement industry creates the perfect opportunity for Omnee


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to launch our game-changing system. When the economy starts ramping back up, we’ll be ready to go!” says Dave Johnston, Founder of Omnee Technologies Corp. Moose Jaw-based entrepreneur, Joel Pinel, is the CEO and Co-Founder of Todai, as well as the owner of Wow Factor Media. Todai is an AI software platform that was developed to work alongside an organization’s human resources team and management to offer real-time insights into company culture and employee engagement. The software uses sentiment analysis to identify an organization’s overall employee engagement and workplace culture by securely (and anonymously) analyzing daily messages sent through email and chats. “With companies shifting to remote workforces during the COVID-19 pandemic, it's difficult to gauge employee morale, collaboration and productivity. This shift has caused increased traction and opportunity for Todai. No matter where team members are working, Todai provides managers with communication analytics that gauge employee morale, collaboration and productivity in real time,” says Pinel. “Hopefully as many Co.Labs companies as possible can weather this storm,” says Dutchak.

Innovation Place 229-116 Research Drive, Saskatoon www.co-labs.ca | @colabsyxe

Co.Labs is Saskatchewan’s first technology incubator and has served as a creative collaboration space for 90 tech start-ups in its first 32 months of operation. Co.Labs is funded by the provincial and federal government through Innovation Saskatchewan and Western Economic Diversification Canada. Co.Labs

In Memoriam: Dale Lemke The Board of Directors and the staff of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce would like to honor the memory of our colleague Dale Lemke. Dale joined the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce in April of 1996 under his company Display Systems International. DSI developed software products for the cable TV industry. In 2010 DSI won SABEX Customer Service Award and Small Business of the Year. Before Dale sold DSI, and being the entrepreneur that he was, he started a new company Quicklinkt Solutions Inc. Quicklinkt developed apps that helped clients access preferred vendors, connect association members, or promote local businesses in the community.

Dale joined the Chamber Board in May of 2018 and was on the Chamber’s Governance Committee. His invaluable insight and extensive expertise in the technology industry and business start-ups was an asset to the Chamber Board. Dale wanted to help the Chamber make Saskatoon an even better place to work and live. Dale was a Board member for other organizations in the community, as well as an angel investor and mentor in the tech space in Saskatchewan. Dale was an inspiration to everyone who knew him and our deepest condolences go to his wife Colleen and all the Lemke family.


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VOTE for your



April 29 Ballots emailed to the membership May 13 Voting closes at noon May 21 The new Board will take effect at the Annual General Meeting via Zoom

Kamanashis Deb Realtor Royal LePage Varsity Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member Current Roles in Other Organizations: Saskatoon Folkfest Bangladesh Community, Pavilion Manager; and Bangladesh Community Association of Saskatchewan, past President Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: As one of Saskatchewan’s lead Realtors, I am known as a friendly and frank problem-solver, a tireless champion of Saskatoon and dedicated team player. My network is strong across the city, province and country as well as around the world. Mostly importantly, I work with Saskatoon families every day and understand the real value of both their time and their money. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: As I arrived in Saskatoon with $20 in my pocket in 2008, I could sense the entrepreneurial spirit of Saskatchewan’s largest city. This spirit continues to define Saskatoon as does our dynamic downtown, picturesque Meewasin Valley and the majestic South Saskatchewan River. The University of Saskatchewan - with its globally-recognized centres of innovation, like the Canadian Light Source synchrotron - is a fundamental pillar of our city and province. But most importantly, this is the best city in Canada to live, work and raise a family. Why the Chamber Board? I am asking to serve on the Chamber Board for three reasons. First, I would like the privilege of helping the Chamber be a stronger, vital bridge between our business community and various newcomer groups. Second, as a leading Realtor in Saskatchewan, I want to be a strong, consistent voice for business and growth in Saskatoon; now more than ever, we must stand up for lower business taxes and greater respect for small business owners. Finally, I want to help grow Saskatoon and ensure that the voice of industry and commerce is not overlooked nor ignored in civic decisions and deliberations.

Kris Figurski Regional Director Weidner Investment Services Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member Current Roles in Other Organizations: Real Estate Institute of Saskatchewan, past Board Member; Saskatchewan Landlord Association, past Board Member; and Canadian Federation of Apartments Association, past Board Member Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: I have very strong knowledge of the property management industry and the rental housing market. I also have excellent knowledge of general business management. I personally have 15+ years of business operations management. I also currently oversee all operations for the Weidner company through Saskatchewan and Manitoba. This includes approximately 100 employees and 3,000 apartments. The 3,000 apartments are spread throughout 21 properties which essentially operate as 21 individual businesses. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: I find Saskatoon to be a beautiful and vibrant city. Saskatoon does not have a hectic big city/metropolis feel but rather a comfortable small city feel while still offering the services of a large city. Why the Chamber Board? I would like to join the Board of Directors for two primary reasons. I personally want to feel more informed about changes and opportunities for our city. I also want to personally contribute to the betterment and growth of our city.


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Joseph A. Gill Partner

Kajoo Kamal Owner / Manager

McKercher LLP

Klassique Designs Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member

Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member

Current Roles in Other Organizations: Ideas Inc., Director; Bridge City Wildlife Federation Foundation, Director; and Saskatchewan Young Professionals & Entrepreneurs Inc., past Director

Current Roles in Other Organizations: none

Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: I act as lawyer and trusted advisor to dozens of Saskatchewan businesses working in everything from agriculture to technology. I was also a co- founder of a local legal technology company and act as “lawyer-in-residence” for Co. Labs. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: The people and the community we have. Many of my business clients are extremely generous with their time in mentoring other business owners and contributing to our community. This “open-door” business culture is one of the key reasons why Saskatoon enjoys such a supportive business ecosystem. I’d also add local restaurants (i.e. delicious food).

Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: I have been in retail for over 40 years, running my own business in downtown Saskatoon for 38. I understand what makes the city tick, the challenges that face the downtown and am committed to its continued improvement. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: The small-town values in a cosmopolitan city. Why the Chamber Board? I have been a longtime sponsor of events in the hospitals, university and the community at large but feel it is time to share my experience with an organization that can enact change to keep the city vibrant.

Why the Chamber Board? I believe the Chamber can make a real impact on Saskatoon businesses. It has the unique role of being the voice of the Saskatoon entrepreneurial spirit and the ability to influence government policy for business owners. I want to lend my talents in support of that role so that every Saskatoon business owner can honestly say “the Chamber made my life better.”

Juan C. Godinez Manager

Adam McInnes Co-chair and President


Med Hack Enterprises Incorporated Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member Current Roles in Other Organizations: AIM (Ability In Me) Saskatoon, Board Candidate

Chamber Involvement: Board of Directors; Advocacy Strategic Committee; Governance Committee; and Indigenous Economic Growth Committee

Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: I have a background in Economics and have previous experience working for the Mexican government in the areas of attraction of investment and regulation of the mining sector. I currently work as Tax Manager at KPMG which allows me to interact with a diverse group of clients, ranging from individual business owners to bigger corporations, and help them identify opportunities to improve their bottom line by working and analyzing their accounting, financial, and tax systems.

Current Roles in Other Organizations: Saskatoon Métis Local 126, President; Western Region Ila Secretariat Inc., Director; and College of Medicine Alumni Association, Director

My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: I think the best thing Saskatoon has to offer, and my Favourite, is the warmth of its people. This is a friendly city with a beautiful river and bridge scenery where families can really enjoy life and feel safe and welcome. During the beautiful summers, there is nothing better for me than running along the riverbank, with the sun on my back, and listening to my Favourite music, or enjoying with my family any of the magnificent festivals that take place in the city, such as The Taste of Saskatchewan and the Show and Shine event that my kid loves.

My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: The people of Saskatoon have an amazing drive and spirit, believing we can accomplish great things, and we do. This brings a vibrancy that is not found elsewhere, shown in our community events, the cultural spaces we build, the innovations we create, and the people we welcome into our community.

Why the Chamber Board? I believe the work of the Chamber as a promoter and advocate of the interests of its members is paramount in the success and prosperity of the Saskatoon business community and it has a tremendous impact in shaping the future of our city. For this reason, I would love the opportunity to be part of this effort by contributing my knowledge, experience, and vision of the world.

Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: With my work in healthcare, technology and innovation, science research, education, and Indigenous issues, I bring a unique perspective, strong experience, and competence for leveraging synergies.

Why the Chamber Board? I want to help Saskatoon grow. Opportunities are expanding, population demographics changing, and attitudes are shifting. This is the time for us to show what we as the Chamber represent through creating opportunities to guide the future we want for our community, and to me, that is exciting.


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Koreen Mak Proprietor

Tara McKeown Chief Employee Experience

Conscious Choice Personal & Professional Development

Conexus Credit Union

Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member

Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member

Current Roles in Other Organizations: Dress for Success Saskatoon Director of Governance

Current Roles in Other Organizations: Valley Action Abilities past Director; and various community associations, past Directors

Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: I can bring a strong knowledge of learning, training, and other organizational development and HR activities as well as the perspective and challenges of a new entrepreneur. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: I love the beautiful walking trails and multicultural atmosphere. I’ve also been amazed how other entrepreneurs in the community are so willing to help new entrepreneurs build their businesses. We operate from a space of abundance, not scarcity – that’s not common! Why the Chamber Board? I think joining the Chamber Board is a great opportunity to understand more of the issues facing businesses in Saskatoon. It’s an opportunity to influence positive change in the city and build relationships with other business people in the community.

Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: I have a background in financial services with a concentration in operations, credit, sales, communication and human resources. I understand the challenges faced by today’s businesses when it comes to growth, financing and talent management. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: The growing diversity, thriving business community and distinct culture that is growing in Saskatoon makes it one of the best cities in Canada. There are so many successful businesses that are garnering national attention in the arts, our design firms - and of course we have some of the country’s best restaurants in our own back yard! I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the incredible microbreweries, innovative technology startups and numerous unique companies that are cultivating great consumer experiences. I am so proud to call Saskatoon home. Why the Chamber Board? Small and medium sized businesses are vital to the economy of Saskatchewan. They provide employment, build our communities and are responsible for retaining some of our province’s top talent. In order to flourish as a province, we need a healthy entrepreneurial ecosystem. Working for a financial cooperative, I understand the importance of community investment and I am committed and passionate in contributing to, and fostering a business environment that attracts, retains and supports our entrepreneurs.

Heather Ryan

Vice-President of Human Resources

Federated Co-operative Limited (FCL) Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member Current Roles in Other Organizations: Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce Indigenous Engagement Charter, Task Force; Saskatoon City Hospital Foundation, Vice-Chair; Co-operative Superannuation Society (SCC), Board Director; Agriculture Council of Saskatchewan, past Board Member; and FoodTech Canada, past Board Member Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: I was born and raised on a farm north of Melfort so I have a rural upbringing but have lived in Saskatoon for the last 30 years. My husband is a small business owner in Saskatoon which provides me insight into the private sector and I have worked in numerous industries including, retail, wholesale, research & development, and telecommunications. I am very business centric and have deep subject matter knowledge of human resources and labour relations. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: I have resided in Saskatoon since 1989 and consider myself a Saskatonian. I attended the University of Saskatchewan for my schooling and continue to raise my family in this amazing community. My favourite thing about Saskatoon is that first and foremost it is home for me and my family. This community if full of exceptional hard-working value based people and it the perfect balance of opportunity and security. Saskatoon is a beautiful and safe city and I am proud to call it home! Why the Chamber Board? I have been very fortunate to have (and continue to have) a very rewarding career in this community but I continue to want to ensure I give back to the community I call home. The Chamber has member representation from across all industries and sectors and I would find it very rewarding to be on the Board of an organization that has the mission to strengthen Saskatchewan’s business community and competitive enterprise system for an improved quality of life. Based on my knowledge, passion and experience, I think I can add value to this mission.


MAY / JUNE 2020

Palash Ranjan Sanyal

Strategic Partnership Specialist

Global Institute for Water Security Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member Current Roles in Other Organizations: SYPE Saskatoon, Board Member; International Water Association Canadian Chapter, Board Member; Canadian Water Network Student and Young Professional, Past Board Member; Global Shapers Hub Saskatoon, Founding Curator; and TEDxUniversity of Saskatchewan, Curator and Licensee Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: Expertise on water; strong relationship building skill with both government and private sector; strong in communication and facilitator for resolving organizational conflict. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: Perfect place to start an immigrant life, lots of good opportunities, good people and food. The city is big enough to engage in different activities but small enough to have the time to be meaningfully engage. The recent COVID-19 situation, proved to me again, my biggest reason to be in Saskatoon: the willingness to do good in people and the sense of community. Why the Chamber Board? My introduction to Chamber of Commerce was through Chamber on Tap in 2018. I took my time to understand the Chamber’s mandate, mission and vision. The businesses that the Chamber represents are the core of Saskatoon’s thriving community and my goal has been to serve the community of Saskatoon, the place I call my home. Saskatoon has a diverse community including Indigenous and Immigrants. I believe my addition to the board will represent diversity Saskatoon Truly represents.

Graham Snell General Manager

Colton Wiegers COO

Saskatoon Aerocentre

Wiegers Financial & Benefits

Chamber Involvement: Board of Directors; Advocacy Strategic Committee Chair; and HR Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: Lymphedema Association of Saskatchewan, Director Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: As a local business person, I have worked in various different industries, building experience and learning from some great people. I have a general business acumen and enjoy working and collaborating with people from all industries. I am a supporter and promoter of business of all sizes, entrepreneurship, advocacy, municipal, provincial and local issues. My business and background is fairly diverse and I have interests in a variety of different things and how they can connect with each other from a business perspective. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: I love this city and it has been the home of my family and I for the past 21 years. The people are friendly. The business community is active, successful and innovative and there is nothing but great opportunities. Why the Chamber Board? The Chamber of Commerce really is the voice of business in this city and a tremendous advocate for both the local economy and international businesses of all sizes. We currently have a diverse group of individuals sitting as directors, who are passionate about our city, the business opportunities and the excitement and growth along with it. I feel the same way and want to remain part of that collective excitement in an effort to do good and help continue the growth.

Tanis Taylor Owner CCA Consulting Chamber Involvement: Past Committees Member; 2018 Member of the Year Current Roles in Other Organizations: International Coach Federation (Saskatchewan), past Board Member; Saskatoon and Saskatchewan Home Builders’ Associations, Board Member; and NSBA Programming Committee, past Chair

Chamber Involvement: Board of Directors; Audit and Finance Committee; Indigenous Economic Growth Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: none Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: Strong financial skills with B.Comm in finance as well as CFA Exam III Candidate. Business experience from starting a trades business and currently in a family business in the finance sector. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: Everyone knows each other in the community. You can always count on seeing someone or having a mutual connection when you go out to events! It helps make for a very tight business community that works together towards common goals. Why the Chamber Board? The Chamber is where I got introduced to the business community in university. The team at the Chamber and many board members helped introduce me to people I am still in touch with today. It laid the groundwork for me to build a great network in the business community in Saskatoon!

VOTE for your


Strengths and Sector Knowledge I Can Contribute: I bring perspectives ranging from those of publicly traded international companies to local, entrepreneurial enterprises. Strengths include critical thinking, strategy, change, finance and governance. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: We have a superpower: our spirit of Coopetition. The community’s willingness to co-operate and collaborate to mutual benefit is a unique strength. Saskatoon’s businesses and diverse citizenry cheer on, work toward and support each other’s successes, appreciating that “a rising tide lifts all boats”. Why the Chamber Board? The Chamber helps create the conditions that enable Saskatoon’s businesses to think differently, achieve more, reach higher. An environment of strong, striving, confident businesses fosters our community’s economic and societal success. I welcome the opportunity to contribute to that future.


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Chamber Happenings

SABEX Finalists Announcement

SABEX 2020 finalists (and the brand new award) were announced during a social media live presentation. SABEX MC’s are Heath Mulligan and Joanne Paulson.

Sabex Finalists Award Delivery

During three days full of fun and a couple of emotive tears, the Chamber delivered a trophy to all the finalists. Along with the band "It's too late baby" The Chamber crew dropped by surprise at the finalists locations to hand them their award.


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Chamber Happenings


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Chamber Happenings Pulse on Politics

On February 11th the Chamber hosted the Honourable Lori Carr, Minister of Government Relations, responsible for First Nations, MÊtis and Northern Affairs in a Centres of Influence Roundtable Event. The conversation centred on the province’s growth plan through investment directly and indirectly in municipalities, the conversation also touched on the engagement of indigenous people.

Pulse on Politics

Near the beginning of March the Chamber hosted a roundtable with the Honourable Jim Carr, Special Representative to the Prairies. The discussion focused on how the Prairie Provinces can become leaders in the next chapter of building the Canadian economy and how they can contribute to the continued growth of the Canadian brand.

Chamber on Tap

Former Chamber on Tap host Evan Drisner from Nu-fab Products took the stage again, this time to be interviewed by Nadine Kanigan. A night of reminiscence and laughter, with good ol' friends, but also full of business experiences and advice.


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A Message from the Incoming Chair

Given the extraordinary global circumstances we are experiencing in the face of COVID-19, businesses are facing an incredible amount of challenge and pressure. To say that everything has changed would be an understatement. We are isolated, working remotely, and our business community’s network has had to adjust to connecting in different ways, as events are cancelled and venues are closed.

get through this together. We are all responding, and it’s apparent that a whole community approach is vital. I’ve seen businesses support each other, businesses change to manufacturing emergency supplies, and businesses adapt their business models – the outreach of support is overwhelming. Bottomline, the Saskatoon business community is an amazing group and showing our true colors right now through this crisis. What a proud moment when it was announced that VIDO-InterVac, right here in Saskatoon, would be leading research to develop a vaccine for COVID-19 worldwide!

Image: Gina’s Portraits

Spring has arrived. Not only is our weather not cooperating (as I write this on a very cold, snowy morning) but Saskatoon’s business community is currently faced with something we’ve never dealt with before. The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken the world and Saskatoon is no exception. The City of Saskatoon has activated its Emergency Operations Centre to coordinate its planning efforts and the Province of Saskatchewan has declared a State of Emergency. The health, safety and wellbeing of everyone is top-ofmind right now.

The Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce will be there every step of the way to advocate and Saskatoon Chamber Board Incoming Chair support our members as we adapt Carla Browne Across Canada, all levels of government and pivot through these times. Saskatoon – the next year has many have recognized the impact on businesses and We want to do everything possible to help have announced new assistance programs. our members survive and then thrive post unknowns but I assure you the Chamber’s network within our city, along with provincial We know this will help but we do not know COVID-19. and national networks, will be what business the long-term results or the aftermath. Business survival and continuity planning In closing, as incoming Chair of the needs to take on this challenge. For now, must begin to be top-of-mind for all of us board, I would like to acknowledge Chris please STAY SAFE! – the Chamber included. Sicotte for his guidance over the last year Sincerely, as he now moves into the Past Chair role. As a small business owner in Saskatoon I see And a special thank you to Peggie Koenig, Carla Browne, the emotions, fears, impacts and uncertainty as she leaves the board and fulfills her final Incoming Chair within our city. The one thing I know for role as Past Chair. Peggie’s leadership and Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce certain is that Saskatoon’s business community contributions around our board table have is a resilient group of individuals and we will been invaluable and we all hope to see her back in the years to come. Carla Browne is the Incoming Chair of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce and the Owner of Real The Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce Canadian Property Management will be there every step of the way to advocate Professionals Inc.

and support our members as we adapt and pivot through these times.


Carla Browne, Incoming Chair Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce

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Chris Sicotte Chair


Sandra Ribeiro Director


Katrina German Director



CREATIVE FIRE Jason Aebig 2nd Vice-Chair







Carla Browne 1st Vice-Chair

CeCe Baptiste, Director

Dr. Adam McInnes Director

Todd A. Denzin Director

Graham Snell Director

Peggie Koenig Past Chair

Linda Exner Director


Colton Wiegers Director

Chamber Board of Directors Working for You!

Penny Yeager Director


Images: Gina’s Portraits


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Profile for Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce

Business Voice - May / June 2020  

Business Voice - May / June 2020