BEA 2023

Page 1


presented by

Wednesday, May 17 Chrysler Theatre and St. Clair College Centre for the Arts


2023 2023
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Creating more prosperity

“Come 2025,” says Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Rakesh Naidu, “we’ll be celebrating our 150th year in existence. But even 148 years in, we have so much to celebrate.”

The Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce represents the interest of all businesses throughout Windsor and Essex County, across all sectors and all industries. The Chamber’s members are made up of small, medium and large organizations, although Naidu estimates that up to 85 per cent of them are small and medium enterprises.

“Our tagline says it best,” he says: “In Windsor-Essex, we are The Voice Of Business.”

Longtime, thriving business leaders, as well as new entrepreneurs just dipping their toes into business ownership, recognize the challenges of business, especially in today’s economy. For this reason, Naidu says, it’s more important than

ever to provide businesses with support and a platform where our needs, issues and concerns can be raised. “As an agnostic association, we advocate (for businesses) across all three levels of government. What we do, whether it’s on the municipal, provincial or federal level, is absolutely non-partisan,” he says.

“Because we are self-funded – our funding comes through membership dues and events – we generate our own revenue, which means we are not aligned with any party or its views or any political ideology.

“And for this reason, we can say wholeheartedly that we are truly a non-partisan, business-focused entity. That’s how all Chambers of commerce are set up, and by intent, meant to be non-aligned to any political party, ensuring transparency and fairness. It means zero influence because of funding, and an absolutely independent operation that is objective in the issues raised and policies that must be put in place.”

The Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce offers five tiers of membership: Gold Circle, Pillar, Community Builder, Connector and Business Builder.

Continued on pg. 6

We are honoured to be a finalist for the Pillars of Our Community Award. We congratulate all the 2023 BEA Award finalists. 100+ WOMEN LOCAL IMPACT 1 HOUR $10K+ THOUSAND DOLLARS Local. Simple. Powerful. Thank you to the 100+ caring women who give back and are true pillars of our community by making Windsor-Essex a better place to live, work and play. 0011263155-01.pdf The file is missing! 0011263155-01 Anywhere Businesses 2 x 35 DOUGLAS MARKETING GROUP
• 2023 3
Rakesh Naidu
1526 Ottawa St. 519-258-6532 PAST... PRESENT... or FUTURE BUSINESS AMBASSADOR OF THE YEAR -2023 Pillar of the Community! Appreciation from all your friends at V.P. General Manager Freeds of Windsor

Continued from pg. 4

Each tier, beginning from the Business Builder level, receives member pricing at all chamber events, access to its benefits and savings programs, and a basic listing the Chamber’s online membership directory.

Connector members are also eligible to receive two category listings in the Chamber’s membership directory, as well as a 30-day online advertisement in the Chamber’s homepage and a member spotlight article in its electronic newsletter.

Community Builders can take advantage of three category listings in the Chamber’s membership directory, a 60-day online advertisement on the Chamber’s homepage, and a member spotlight article in its newsletter.

The Chamber provides access to all levels of government for all Pillar members, and represents their needs and best interests to municipal, provincial, and federal representatives. Members of this tier include Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare, Enwin, KPMG and Bell Media.

At the highest level – the Gold Circle – the Chamber makes a concerted effort to listen to their concerns both for their organization and for there sectors.. Gold Circle members include Enbridge, Green Shield Canada, Hiram Walker and Sons, Caesars Windsor, the University of Windsor and St. Clair College.

“While each tier provides different benefits, we really prepare by taking input from our members, reaching out proactively and inviting them to several round tables so we can get direct feedback,

and network with some of the key stakeholders in Canada, or even outside as well,” says Naidu.

“While the topmost tier – the Gold Circle – is by invitation only, those who have contributed significantly to the Windsor-Essex region by creating a lot of employment and have significant influence in the sector which they operate, all members benefit at any tier,” says Naidu.

“This is because there is a whole matrix of benefits, whether it’s discounts for services that help businesses lower their operational costs, training programs, membership programs, virtual sessions or partnerships.”

Naidu acknowledges the value of what may very well be the most exciting event for many Chamber members: the Business Excellence Awards. Celebrating its 32nd year in 2023, “It’s a way for us to recognize all the great work these businesses do, but to also celebrate with them, give them a platform, and hope that such an acknowledgement will help take them to newer heights they may not have reached had it not been for this recognition or celebration.

“Our intention,” he says, “is that through the visibility they receive, they can get even more successful outside of Windsor-Essex, or even outside of Canada, to create even more prosperity in our region. And it’s celebrating our own. We take great pride in each Chamber member, because of all that they give to our community.

“They are the reason this region has and will become bigger, better and more successful.”



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Anywhere Businesses 2 x 35 URE’S COUNTRY MARKET
• 2023 6
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Community engagement

Shelby Colarossi is a dedicated professional with more than 20 years of experience at the Windsor Essex Community Health Centre (weCHC).

She started her career with the organization as a member of the Teen Health Centre, where she played an integral role in the organization’s growth and development, witnessing several transformations over the years. Shelby has held various positions at weCHC and currently oversees its Public Relations and Development.

Her passion for her work at weCHC is driven by a desire to break down barriers to access to healthcare

and empower individuals to better manage their physical and mental health. Health Promotion and Disease Prevention are at the forefront of her work, and she is proud to support weCHC in meeting clients where they are, emotionally and physically.

Shelby’s contributions to the Windsor community extend beyond her work at weCHC. Since 2003, she has been an active member of the Business Excellence Awards committee with the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce. Through her work on the committee, she has gained a deep appreciation for the businesses and businesspeople in the community. Shelby played a key role in changing the format of the awards, which now features a Hollywood-style presentation where winners are revealed on the night of the awards.

Shelby is known for forging and fostering




Shelby Colarossi
• 2023 8
Shelby Colarossi: BEA Chair

strong relationships, both professionally and through her volunteer work with the Chamber. Her passion for listening to people and learning about what motivates and inspires them is at the heart of everything she does.

In addition to her professional work, Shelby has contributed her writing skills to several publications. She has written articles for Windsor Parent Magazine and the BANA Be Yourself Magazine, sharing her knowledge and insights on health, wellness and community engagement.

When Shelby is not working, she prioritizes a healthy and balanced lifestyle. She believes that a sound mind and body are critical to maintaining personal and professional success. Shelby enjoys spending time with good friends, traveling to new destinations, exploring different cuisines and cycling around her community.

Born and raised in Windsor, Shelby and her husband Marino have five children and one grandchild.

BEA CommittEE

ChAir - Shelby Colarossi, Windsor Essex Community Health Centre

PAst ChAir - Jason Toner, Tourism Windsor-Essex Pelee Island

ViCe ChAir - Andrea Hothman, Hotham Building Materials Inc.

seCretAry - Kristy Sauve, The Insurance Store

brAuntë PetriC, Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce

steVe ColAsAnti – Colasanti Controls

PAtriCk kelly – BANA (Bulimia Anorexia Nervosa Association)

lAurA kAy, Julian’s House

rAChel Meeke – United Way/Centraide WindsorEssex County

lori PAtterson – Allegra Marketing Print Mail

oliViA o’neil – Windsor Essex Community Health Centre

Judging CommittEE

returning Judges: Lindsay Darocy, Paula Koppert

PAst Winners: Dr. Maxwell Abraham, Darcie Valente

loCAl business: Nina Korac and Sammi Zakoor

businessPerson: Ken Stewart and Monica Black

eduCAtionAl institution: dr. ZhenZong MA, Peter george

CoMMunity MeMbers: kristy stAnnArd, brAndi Myles



2 x 51.994

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Anywhere Businesses

Up to challenge of hosting ‘sheer magnitude’ of BEAs

What does it take to entertain, feed and impress 800 astute, discerning guests at one of WindsorEssex’s most glamourous nights of the year?

For Joe D’Angela and his team at St. Clair College Centre for the Arts, “It’s an all-in, allhands-on-deck experience, for all of us. (The Business Excellence Awards) is a big party, and you’ve got a lot on your hands, so you have to really get behind this.”

The Director of Operations for the centre says that while he and his staff, led by chef Carmen Incitti, are “bounced around 1,000 different things, especially for an event of this magnitude,” the experienced team have it down to a science. But it takes the involvement of more than 200 staff members to get it right, to make it seamless and to achieve perfection.

Since the return of the Business Excellence Awards to St. Clair College Centre for the Arts, the event is divided into two parts: the awards portion takes place inside the Chrysler Theatre, Continued on pg. 12


strive to innovate health and wellness services in Canada. From online prescription management, to virtual visits with healthcareproviders, we’recaring for and supporting our customers every day.Wehave apassion for customers and strive to be atrusted nutrition, health, beauty,&wellness partner for Canadians, supporting the company’s overarching purpose –Live Life Well. Our CORE values –Care, Ownership, Respect, Excellence –guide our actions and decisions to be abetter place to work and shop.


The three pillars of success for the company are:

✔ Health: Pharmacy is the heart of the store. The pharmacy team is dedicated to making adifference to the health and well-being of Canadians.

✔ Beauty: Buying cosmetics is about having choices. The Cosmetic team provides a range of beauty solutions.

✔ Convenience: We offer aone-stop shopping destination and ahassle-free shopping environment.

Dr Matthew Thibert PharmD RPh| Associate Owner

Southwest Ontario Peers Representative


3100 HowardAve Unit T20, Windsor,ON, N8X 3Y8 •T:519.969.4523

SHOPPERS DRUG MART#3001 1270 Walker Rd Unit 1, Windsor,ON, N8Y 4T4


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Anywhere Businesses 2 x 35 SHOPPERS DRUG MART #760 DEVONSHIRE MALL
The Venue: St. Clair College Centre for the Arts
• 2023 10
At Matthew
Drugs LTD
•T:519.253.2200 |F:519.253.2208
•T:519.969.1234 |F:519.969.4147
1421 Grand Marais Rd WUnit 100, Windsor,ON, N9E 4V1

Thank you!

Media Street

Thank you to Media Street, the show’s producers, for over 25 years of incredible creativity and for helping make the Business Excellence Awards one of the best events in WindsorEssex. Media Street creates the finalist videos, stage presence and visual production. We also congratulate Kelly Blais, a lifelong supporter of Windsor-Essex, on becoming the new owner of Media Street.

Thanks to: Kelly Blais, Keith Chinnery, Jarrod Ferris, Susan Toth-Wachter and Mike Kakuk.


Thank you to YourTV, their production team, and volunteers for their continuous support of the event. For the second year in a row, they will broadcast the

Business Excellence Awards live on YourTV. Check the listings for additional broadcast dates and times by visiting

Thank you to Terry Doyle and Dave Renaud

St. Clair College Centre For The Arts and Chrysler Theatre

Joe D’Angela, Veronica Mancini, Tim Mussio, Rosita Blackman-Smith, Rob Price and the many staff and volunteers responsible for ensuring the event’s success.

Event Supporters

• Soffi Studios

• Mike Kovaliv and Mychailo Photography

• Swanky Affair Event Design

• Josh Johnson Band

• Sal Albano of New Dimensions Sound and Lighting

• 2023 11

Continued from pg. 10 which seats roughly 1,150 audience members.

At the end of the award ceremony, guests are ushered into the Alumni Skyline Ballroom where they’re presented with formally served, plated meals.

“It’s a pretty unique event,” says D’Angela, “during which you have two elements of a night out rolled into one – from a guest’s perspective, they have double the entertainment. It’s not like a traditional award ceremony, like the Emmys or other broadcasted award shows where you’re sitting down in a dining room and watching the awards at the same time.

“This is the chance for guests to experience an awards presentation in a gorgeous commercial theatre, and then they make their way into a ballroom for more socialization with the winners, family members and friends.

“It really is quite the evening.”

Because the centre belongs to an academic institution, D’Angela says the night is used not only to provide guests with an unparalleled, outstanding experience, it also benefits the hundreds of students in the college’s hospitality and culinary programs. Fifty per cent of the staff who work on the Business Excellence Awards’ gala night are students, while the other half are regular part-time staff.

“It’s the sheer magnitude of the event,” D’Angela says. “The number of people involved in an event

like this is in the hundreds, because you’re talking not just meal prep, but also your table settings, preparing the room, the organizing, the cleaning, the washing, the food preparation, the cooking and the serving of the food.”

D’Angela says that a night like this is a true showcase of a successful collaborative effort, speaking to the partnership between students, peers, mentors and teachers.

“There’s so much that people don’t see behind the scenes,” he says.

“There are co-ordinators assigned to each program. Chef Carmen Incitti represents the kitchen department, and he liaises with the culinary co-ordinator to work on schedules, discussing the services and the expectations of the event and what is required.

“And then on the opposite side is the dining room – the banquet manager would coordinate with (his peers) on the setup of the room, what time to serve dinner.

“There’s a lot of complexity to this event, not just because of the size, but because the abundance of service we promise. At St. Clair College, you have a lot more attention to detail, more table service. The food gets served quicker, and the guests are happy, and the students really grow from the learning component.”

D’Angela is very proud of how the college caters to those with dietary restrictions or specific dietary needs.



We extend our congratulations to all of the 2023 BEA finalists for their outstanding accomplishments.


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2 x 35 DOUGLAS
Anywhere Businesses
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“We’re one of the few facilities in the city that actually has two pages full of vegetarian offerings on a regular banquet menu,” he says, “so that any guests with specific allergies have a beautiful individually plated meal created for them. It’s not a passing thought. It’s as extravagant for the vegetarian as it is for the rest of the guests.”

D’Angela says he’s thrilled that the college is once again hosting the Business Excellence Awards as it gives the hardest working

entrepreneurs and leaders from in and throughout Windsor-Essex the chance to enjoy themselves on a most glamorous evening. But more than that is that the college gets to provide an enhanced service, D’Angela says.

“People always talk about the beautiful view of the riverfront, and they do remember a great evening,” he muses. “But I think about the food, and I think about the mentorship that goes on, and the commitment to making it a beautiful evening.”



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• 2023 13 Log ic is one of Ontar io’s most tr ustedsearch par tners. Our team has aproventrack record of helping org anizations recr uit professional and executivelevel talent. Logic Executive Search and Workplace Solutions is honoured to be afinalist for New Company of the Year! 226.683.0033 www.log 310 Croft Dr ive–Unit 200, Tecumseh, ON N8N 2L9 Jennifer Charron President
St. Clair College Centre for the Arts is the setting for the Business Excellence Awards.


• Recognizes a philanthropic organization or person that has made an outstanding contribution to the social, cultural or economical well-being of the Windsor-Essex area

• Nominees will positively affect the community and demonstrate best business practices

• The objective of the organization will reflect a community need and has a clearly defined strategic plan

• Part of the judging process for this award will involve community voting


• A business that exemplifies leadership and commitment to sustainable business practices

• Nominees will have measurable initiatives that demonstrate adapting and improvising operations to allow for long-term success

• Reducing environmental impact, improving efficiencies with technology

• Showing a commitment to research and development in their industry

• Adding noteworthy employment opportunities to our community or creating corporate culture


• Recognizes a business that has become a destination for the region

• An ambassador that plays a vital role in the growth of their sector allowing others in their industry to also benefit from their success

• Nominees provide amazing customer service and recognize the importance of hospitality in the area

• Examples include wineries, restaurants, hotels, golf courses or other points of interest


• An individual who is an owner of at least one venture

• Must have made a recent (within two years) outstanding contribution to the local economy and the entrepreneurial spirit

• Nominees will have at least 10 years of related experience

• They will demonstrate growth in the way of innovation, sales, employment creation and acceptance in the market


• An individual who is accredited in their industry that demonstrates excellence in their field of business in the recent past and positively influences the community

• They are leading the way in their profession with innovation and acceptance in the market

• Examples include lawyers, accountants, consultants and non-profit leaders

Anywhere Businesses
x 35 MNP LLP
nomination • 2023 14 Walter Benzinger,CPA,CA, CFP |519.967.0388 Congratulations to all the nominees of the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber’sBusiness Excellence Awards. Thank you for making our community so remarkable!
BEA Award
Overview, Criteria for

BEA Award Categories: Overview, Criteria for nomination


• An individual who is accredited in their profession and under the age of 35 that demonstrates excellence in their field of business and positively influences the community

• Nominees will have significant potential as a future leader, showing signs of innovation and acceptance in the market

• Examples include lawyers, accountants, consultants and non-profit leaders


• An individual who is a member of staff (NOT self-employed and not an owner) that exceeds all expectations in their role within a business or organization


• Less than 25 full-time employees

• Nominees will demonstrate their strategic goals

• They will show how they accomplished these goals as well as a commitment to research and development of advances in the company’s industry sector

• They will show forecasts of growth and employment creation



• 26 or more full-time employees

• Nominees will demonstrate their strategic goals

• They will show how they accomplished these goals as well as a commitment to research and development of advances in the company’s industry sector.

• They will show forecasts of growth and employment creation


• They improve company culture, promote growth and innovation in the workplace, and have a vital role in the ongoing success of a business

• They are a role model for their peers and the community

• Examples would include municipal employees, directors of corporations and staff


• A new venture that is at least one year old but less than five years in business (at the date of the scheduled awards event).

• Nominees will demonstrate their strategic goals

• They will show how they accomplished these goals as well as a commitment to research and development of advances in the company’s industry sector

• They will show forecasts of growth and employment creation

• Celebrates the potential of all women as valued members and leaders in the community and recognizes an individual who supports those leaders

• Honours an individual who strives toward the highest levels of professional and /or business accomplishments

• Recognizes women and men who have devoted time and energy in their community in a meaningful way and opened paths so that other women may follow

• Non-profit leaders are not eligible for this award


• Recognizes an individual or organization that has demonstrated a significant commitment to positive business development despite global market trends

• The recipient has in place definite and precise goals that will result in diversity of our region

• These goals will enhance the economic growth and satisfies both individual pursuit for advancement and the overall economic development of our community at large

• 2023 15

Company of the Year (less than 26 employees)

Brady’s Drug Store

Brady’s is an award-winning locally owned business, with stores in Belle River, Essex and Tilbury. Pharmacist-owner Tim Brady and his staff deliver a premium customer service experience that considers not only how to help people feel better when they’re ill but, to stay healthy over the long term.

Knowing that a healthy team, means a healthy business, Brady’s is a living wage employer, assisting with professional accreditation annual

Cedar Valley Selections

Kids bring in all kinds of things from the outside, like bugs, dirt or smells. But one day, Ameen Fadel brought in something his mother Surria never expected — a business plan. And with it, Cedar Valley was born!

After receiving a small grant from his high school at 16-years-old, Ameen knew he had to bring his mom’s recipes to Canadians as the demand for delicious Lebanese foods was on the rise.

Starting with one product (Canada’s first

Two Men and a Truck Windsor-Sarnia

Two Men and a Truck is excited to bring more than 30 years of professional moving experience to the Windsor-Essex Area.

They take pride in their core purpose which is Moving People Forward. As the Movers Who Care® they are happy to offer their industryleading service to Windsor, Chatham-Kent and Sarnia areas.

Two Men and a Truck understand moving can be particularly difficult. That’s why they work

fees as well as an annual stipend to reimburse medical expenses that can be used for physical and mental health supports.

Brady’s is also a teaching pharmacy, acting as a preceptor for university students. Tim’s mentorship of pharmacy interns has led many into the healthcare profession.

Brady’s was also among the first pharmacies in the region to offer VR-assisted vaccinations to help those with a fear of needles by distracting them from their discomfort and anxiety. Patients can watch golden retriever puppies, swimming dolphins or explore outer space while receiving their flu shot.

bottled Fattoush Dressing) at the Downtown Farmers Market in 2017, Cedar Valley now offers six types of salad dressings and four flavours of pita chips. In 2020, Cedar Valley invested in its own 5,000-sq.-ft. manufacturing facility in Oldcastle. Products are now available in 800plus retailers across Canada.

Cedar Valley has donated products to the local Food Bank, Downtown Mission and Windsor Lifeline Outreach as well as partnering with local farmers to donate all pita scraps and waste from their production facility for chicken feed, eliminating food waste and keeping the chickens healthy, happy and fed!

hard to make the process as smooth and simple for customers as possible.

Striving to exceed expectations in every move they serve residential and business customers while following the Grandma Rule to treat every customer the same way they would treat their own grandma.

Two Men and a Truckhas entered a “partnership for life” by joining The Mikey Network’s “Mikey on Board” Program and installing life-saving defibrillators in all their moving trucks. When cardiac arrest strikes, every second counts. So now their trucks have a defibrillator wherever they travel, with employees trained in their use.

Sponsored by Families First
• 2023 16

Young Professional of the Year

Aaron Nixon believes that the community should come first in everything that he does. Building the principles of a patientfocused practice, he offers a clinically focused pharmacy that provides increased access to medical care in an underserved area. Through medical directives, enhanced training and new initiatives he hopes to provide unparalleled access to care to the

Sponsored by Libro Credit Union

For Kimberly Crevatin, what started out as an internship quickly became the best piece of her life as the proud of being an owner of Windsor CrossFit. She takes great pride in helping people become the best version of themselves through difficult workouts, a strong community, a positive push for healthier habits and effective

Lauryn Lefrancois

After working for a decade in the developmental sector, Lauryn Lefrancois recognized a need within our community for more day programs for adults with disabilities.

It was very common at the time to hear families’ concerns about individuals after high school, as there was very little programming available and a wait list of 15 years for 24-hour


Knowing that for this approach to be sustainable an ongoing culture of care needed to be created, he works with nursing, pharmacy and co-op students from around the county on rotation while supporting the mandate of the Ontario College of Pharmacists assessing newly graduated pharmacists and pharmacy technicians seeking licensure.

Aaron steps out of the pharmacy while continuing to give, volunteering at the Kingsville Community Centre where he provides educational seminars. He is also an avid supporter of the Terry Fox Run.


She was instrumental in transforming Windsor CrossFit (WCF) into a positive space for everyone, with heart and authentic care for the people they serve.

Kimberly believes in leading by example, never asking her staff or clients to give any more, or less, than she is willing to give herself.

Under her direction, WCF now hosts events with the wider community on a regular basis to ensure that all members feel they have someone to turn to when needed — with the message that a sense of belonging is so important to overall happiness.

home care. In 2018, using revenue from selling her home, Lauryn started Lola’s Round Table. She even traded in her car for a minivan to transport members.

After transitioning the program to a not-forprofit, Lauryn worked an extra 20-30 hours a week at another job while donating that money to Lola’s, all while she continued to recruit donations and apply for charitable status.

Four and a half years later, Lola’s now provides a safe and welcoming “home away from home” for their members to develop social and life skills, friendships with their peers and relationships with those in our community.

Aaron Nixon Kim Crevatin
• 2023 17

Believe Windsor-Essex Award: Lisa and Brian Schwab

Sponsored by WFCU Credit Union

The Believe Windsor-Essex Award, sponsored by WFCU Credit Union, recognizes excellence in three key criteria.

First, it looks for an individual(s) or organization that has demonstrated a significant commitment to positive business development despite global market trends. Second, the recipient(s) has in place definite and precise goals that will result in a diversity of our region, and last, these goals will enhance the economic growth and satisfy both individual pursuit for advancement and the overall economic development of our community at large.

It’s hard to picture two individuals who make us want to Believe more than Lisa and Brian Schwab.

Born and raised in Windsor, they are proud of the community where they live, make their livelihood and are raising their children.

Most prominently the Schwabs are known as part of the ownership team from Cypher Systems Group. What started as a small hardware wholesaler and software developer founded in 1983 by Brian, the computer guru along with Stephen Savage and John Savage, it wasn’t long until they began to take Windsor by storm.

As their success story grew exponentially, landing GM as a large-group partner and ultimately maintaining more than 750 insurance company plans across Canada, this local juggernaut took the industry by storm until the group sold the insurance brokerage to Chicago-based Hub International in 2016.

Most recently, the Cypher Systems

Group joined with Mid South Land Development Corp. to purchase the former Fish Market, City Beer Market and Chatham Street Grill buildings and are developing all three properties for residential, office and commercial lease. In 2019 they locked in Quicken Loans (Rock Holdings) as their largest tenant. The company plans to grow the office to more than 100 tech workers.

But along the way Lisa and Brian stayed true to their roots in Windsor and became synonymous for their extracurricular activities, owning hockey teams and investing in the arts, properties and philanthropy.

The commitment to our community is an inherited trait for both Lisa and Brian. Lisa’s father Roy Battagello, was a teacher, coach, vice-principal and principal at several local high schools, served five terms as a Windsor city councillor, and for 24 years was a member and long-time chairman of Windsor Utilities Commission (later Enwin Utilities and Enwin Powerlines).

Roy was also a driving force to help fulfill the dream of uninterrupted riverfront parkland between Ambassador Bridge and Hiram Walker.

Similarly, Brian’s father Henry Schwab was the wellrespected owner of Schwab’s Meat Products, a Past-President of the German Canadian Business and Professional Association, a long-time member of First Lutheran Church and the Teutonia Club.

Roy and Henry understood the value of creating a healthy, prosperous community.

• 2023 18

They lead by example. Instilling the ideal within Lisa and Brian that your community is your family.

Carrying on these values, from a young age, Lisa and Brian encouraged all four of their kids to save, spend and give equally. A philosophy they continue today as they look to involve their children in the philanthropic goals of the Lisa and Brian Schwab Foundation.

“It is important to us to give where you live,” says Lisa.

The Schwabs recognize the benefits of investing in the community, building a business that employs local talent, who in turn help the economy and community to grow, and investing in the local charitable organizations that need donors to help them carry out their missions.

Lisa and Brian strongly Believe in the importance of building a structure for better mental health and wellness. In recent years as the isolation felt during the pandemic brought self-care to the forefront and the stressors on our health care system became more prevalent, the Schwabs continued their support.

As part of Cypher Systems, Lisa and Brian

recognized that a healthy community was more than just dollars and cents; it was about creating a better environment for us all to live in many ways. Through the company, they’ve contributed significantly to the Essex Region Conservation Authority Greenway trail system. They’ve helped bring the multimillion-dollar da Vinci Robot to Windsor Regional Hospital to assist with surgeries, and they have sponsored the Windsor Symphony Orchestra.

And on a personal level the Schwabs, through their Foundation, have continued to support the local charities that are near and dear to their hearts including: the Windsor Cancer Centre Foundation, Transition to Betterness, Art Windsor Essex, W.E. Care for Kids, CMHAWECB, the Teen Art Council, Grow On Windsor and Julien’s House. These are just a few of the countless organizations that have benefited from their generosity.

From business to benefactors, through it all, Lisa and Brian Schwab have Believed in Windsor-Essex, and tonight we are honoured to Believe in them.

• 2023 19 At WFCU Credit Union, we’re proud to sponsor the 2022-2023 Believe Windsor-Essex Award, which recognizes an individual’s or organization’s outstanding achievement in our community. Our Community. Our Priority. 519-974-WFCU

New Company of the Year

Rare Butcher Shop

With 35 combined years of experience and a genuine passion for the craft that is butchery, Rare Butcher Shop’s owner Grant Molyneux and butcher Rob Pursel strive to provide an unparalleled standard of quality and variety.

A marriage of traditional butchering methods and old-world artisanship is combined with stateof-the-art meat aging processes and techniques bringing expertise, skill and dedication together

Estate of Health Holistic Wellness Centre

Estate of Health Holistic Wellness Centre is a nurturing space where anyone can come and find rest, relaxation and healing.

The only regional holistic wellness centre and yoga studio with a thermotherapy day spa, Estate of Health Holistic Wellness Centre hosts a truly unique experience for customers — reducing stress and promoting healing for the body, mind and spirit. Their unique vision and strong community connection have enabled them

Logic Executive Search and Workplace Solutions Inc.

Logic Executive Search provides professional recruitment expertise and customized workplace strategies to organizations across Canada and the United States.

In addition to recruitment, they offer human resources support including outplacement services, policy and procedure development, training and its Dual Career Program through the University of Windsor. Logic’s communityfocused approach and global candidate reach

Sponsored by Enbridge

in perfect harmony. The proof is in every cut. Through educating customers on different levels and cuts of meat, they’ve also been able to redefine the image of butcher shops. At Rare, the image of the cold, dim, traditional butcher shop has been redone into a boutique style, high-end, clean and warm environment.

Rare serves the community more than just meats by creating a space for foodies to gather and share recipes while learning ways to barbecue and prepare their cuts of meat alongside a highly knowledgeable staff and through their social media outlets.

to transform one of Kingsville’s most historic homes (the old Kings Manor) into an inviting space for people to cultivate peace and wellness within themselves and within the community.

Estate of Health Holistic Wellness Centre is very involved in supporting local charitable organizations and getting folks together to raise awareness about important issues like climate change and mental health. Environmentally friendly, they have a large composting system on the property to manage the organic material that collects on the grounds, and in working with Green Heart Catering they have been able to bring in ethically sourced lunches for guests.

have successfully helped clients source and retain top talent to help their businesses prosper through these unprecedented times.

Logic has implemented “Invest in Yourself Days” which provides team members one paid day off per quarter to disconnect and invest in their personal and professional health. Their employees are also offered flexible working hours to support personal and professional commitments. They are also encouraged to participate in wellness and diversity and inclusion training and during summer months Logic gives modified hours to provide their team with one paid day off per week to focus on their physical and mental health.

• 2023 20

Innovation Award

Lymphology Skincare

Established in October 2021 by founder Maddie Simone, Lymphology Skincare focuses on an utmost passion for helping and supporting those with Lymphedema in honour of her two brothers who passed away of a rare aortic condition. Driven by the mission to fulfill the needs of patients with a product that is entirely Canadian-made, Lymphology Skincare has been carefully developed and worked on by a group of chemists out of Montreal.

University of Windsor Charge Lab

The Centre for Hybrid Automotive Research and Green Energy (CHARGE), at the University of Windsor is an internationally recognized R&D, component, and system design and test centre that fosters cross-disciplinary research collaboration among materials, mechanical, electrical, and software engineers to develop groundbreaking research solutions for EV applications.

The objective of CHARGE Lab’s partnerships with the automotive industry is not only to develop new and commercialized next–

Bright Green Roof

Bright Green Roof

Windsor is Essex County’s first and only roofing shingle preservation company.

Their 100 per cent plant-based roof preservation treatment will extend the life of an asphalt shingle roof up to 10 years, while also restoring colour and appearance, enhancing protection from the elements, and saving the homeowner money by

Sponsored by Meridian Credit Union

Working with the goal of putting the care of the patient back into their own hands; Lymphology

Skincare uses an all-natural ingredient cream which results in the reduced need for frequently replaced compression garments and lesser reliance on pharmaceuticals and surgical intervention.

In an effort to support those in need of services, every year Maddie and Lymphology Skincare run a fundraiser for the Lymphedema Association of Ontario’s Compassion Fund that gives scholarships for lymphedema treatment to individuals that they otherwise could not afford.

generation EV propulsion technologies, but also to produce automotive leaders and world-leading researchers and engineers and help Canada meet its climate goals.

In addition to their technological innovation, the CHARGE Lab strives to create a healthy workplace where research and support personnel are encouraged to take responsibility for improving their health as well as creating a healthy workplace environment for all. As University of Windsor employees, they are encouraged to participate in various workshops and seminars offered by the University towards improving their physical, mental, and emotional well-being.

delaying the replacement of their roof.

Three applications of Bright Green Roof’s shingle preservation oil are estimated to double the useful life of a homeowner’s roof, facilitating a 50 per cent reduction in landfill waste, CO2 emissions, and petroleum usage from the roofing industry.

Bright Green Roof Windsor currently sponsors the YQG Green networking group in Windsor, which is a group of small business owners, social enterprises, non-profits and community-based organizations that want to make a difference by promoting environmentally and socially sustainable practices.

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Business Ambassador Award: Keith White

Long before Keith White became Vice President and General Manager of one of the most prolific and beloved fashion retailers in southwestern Ontario, he was just a young man with a desire to learn. His was a hunger recognized early by local business owners Gerald Freed and Alan Orman.

The son of the originating founder Sam Freed, Gerald had partnered with his brother-in-law Alan and took the young White under their wings, eager to teach him everything they knew about the business and the industry.

“(Alan) was my person, my mentor,” muses White. “He and I had a relationship until he left this earth just a short time ago.

“He taught me everything there is to know about this business – that the product you have on your floor is very, very important, but that what you treat like gold is the customer. You can appreciate the thread, the lining, the styling, but what he taught me – and what has stayed with me – is that when a customer leaves (Freeds), a little bit of you is in the suit that he’s purchased. That’s the relationship. And that’s what I’ve believed in my 53 years of experience of here.”

No wonder, then, that White was chosen in 2023 for the inaugural Business Ambassador Award at the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Business Excellence Awards. It might well have been his leadership, his amiable nature, his good-humoured personality or his loyalty to the workplace he calls home, but White believes it’s his simple outlook that has made the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce take notice – his complete commitment to the customer.

The recognition and celebration of White’s ambition to improve the business for which he’s worked and the lives he continues to touch

Sponsored by RBC

every day is one he acknowledges with humility. Despite his modesty, he joyfully recalls some of the most remarkable milestones of his career, which include the success of Class Act and the founding of the philanthropic group Circle of Seven.

“Al and I started Class Act (at Freeds) many, many years ago, which is the school uniform arm of the business,” shares White. “We did that with the help of Father (Fred) Zakoor from Brennan, (former principal) John Staley from St. Anne’s. Everybody who was involved with the school board listened to my sales pitch and they all got on board, and we still have that contract today.

“But you know what I think really won them over, and why we still have it today? It’s the guarantee that no child would ever go to school without a uniform, something we have made sure of until this day.”

White says that what he and Orman promised was the creation of a “Principal’s Account,” which would permit for the discreet payment of a uniform for any child unable to afford one. The full amount would be paid for by Freeds. And through the years, White says, the school board has stepped in as well, partnering with other agencies to be able to help fund the cost of uniforms for underprivileged students.

“Got the ball rolling,” says White with a chuckle, “but it’s all Diane Hillman, who’s the best. She handles the whole thing – she knows the fits, she knows the little nuances that students want to try and pull off, and she handles it all discreetly so that not only does no child go without a uniform, no child is ever embarrassed by their current circumstances.”

White’s sense of compassion and selflessness stretches beyond what he does for folks at Freeds.

Over two decades ago, he and six friends – all prominent business leaders from in and

• 2023 22

around Windsor – formed the Circle of 7, a group dedicated to raising funds for numerous charitable organizations throughout the region.

“I still remember running into a certain Mr. Tony Toldo at Essex (Golf Club), and telling him that we were having a tournament there in 30 days, for an MRI machine at the hospital downtown. I told him we were aiming to raise $100,000.

“He looked at me and said, ‘You’re not raising $100,000. You’ll raise 40, 50 — tops,’” he said.

“No, sir,” White had said confidently. “We are certainly going to raise $100,000.”

“He said, ‘You raise a hundred, and I’ll match it.”

The Circle successfully raised over $120,000.

True to his word, Toldo matched their funds. He also paid for the shipment of the machine from Quebec to Windsor.

Today, the Circle of 7 has raised and distributed more than $4 million to various causes in the community. “It’s all about giving,” says White. “Whether you’re on the floor or out in the greater community, what makes it all worth it is giving back.”

Investing in Ontario’s clean energy transition

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• 2023 23 PRO UD SPO NSO RO FT HE Small Business of the Year Award &P AST RECIP IE NT SO FT HE SmallBusiness &Entrepreneur of the YearAwards Lif eC ele br ati on s. Cr em at ion Tr adition al Fu ner als .E ve nt Re ce ptio n. 519.969.5841 FA MILI ESFIR ST .C A South Windsor |E ast Wi ndsor |L aSalle Amherstburg |D owntown Windsor AD ivision of Ser vice Corporation Internationa l( Canada) ULC
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Tourism and Hospitality

KŌNA Suishi


with four locations across the area in Walkerville, LaSalle, Lakeshore and Tecumseh, KONA is known for creating a one-of-a-kind allyou-can-eat dining experience with a CanadianJapanese fusion.

One of their fundamental principles has been the belief that giving back to the community will only bring good things back to you. Sushi can seem foreign and sometimes intimidating

Urban Field House

The Urban Field House is a thriving onestop shop with decor company, DJ services, catering services and photography.

This timeless, rural setting offers a romantic ambiance with authentic wooden 16-ft. ceilings tucked away in a naturally breathtaking oasis in

Ure’s Mini Golf

Located on the North Shore of Lake Erie, Ure’s Country Kitchen & Variety has created a truly unique opportunity for a great family outing and a chance to make some cherished memories, all while enjoying some healthy physical activity.

A rare country gem, this small family-

Sponsored by OLG/Caesars Windsor

so they’ve crafted their menu to include many familiar western flavours. With their customers in mind, KŌNA has reimagined the possibilities of what Japanese fusion cuisine can be.

Community and charitable support is a pillar of KŌNA’s business ethics and mission and while their primary local charity is the Fight Like Mason Foundation they also sponsor numerous youth hockey and soccer teams. Wanting to do even more, KŌNA has also taken environmental responsibility and sustainability very seriously and is currently making the transition to eco-friendly paperbased recyclable products.

Emeryville. Its three acres of property includes a private patio with a large outdoor fireplace and a cove of mature trees offering an exquisite backdrop for your most memorable moments

Going beyond exemplary customer service and out-of-this-world food, the Urban Field House is also dedicated to being a good neighbour and community partner. They donate the use of the space to a music school and a dance studio twice a year for recitals, their kitchen staff created and donated 340 meals to the homeless centre KIDS FIRST and they donate their space for municipal elections.

owned and operated business offers a variety of products and services including a restaurant serving breakfast and lunch daily, a gas station with gasoline, diesel, and dyed diesel, an ice cream parlour with hand-scooped deliciousness, and convenience store with snacks, candy and refreshments.

What ties it all together is the recent addition of a world-class 18-hole mini golf course. The creative use of streams, ponds, fountains, and a waterfall coupled with breaking greens and fairways ensures this mini putt course is about the fun, making memories, and a must-do experience for the whole family.

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After moving to Windsor in 1999 for a summer position with the law firm of Sutts, Strosberg, Daniel Topp had no intention to stay in the region. That was until he fell in love with Windsor and all it had to offer.

After being asked to return to article, he and his future wife Tracy decided to make this their home. Once called to the Bar in 2002 and armed

Dave Cowie

Over the past 20 years Dave Cowie has achieved a level of professional excellence in the field of Massage Therapy that is unmatched in WindsorEssex. Sought-after for his unique skillset by clientele that includes Olympians, World Champions, and Professional Athletes (NHL / NFL included), Cowie works with a diverse patient population, thriving on collaboration with others towards a common goal.

Dr. Elena Kalmantis

As a wife, mother and dentist practicing in LaSalle, Dr. Elena Kalmantis started a dental blog on Instagram with the goal of not only educating the public but also being a resource for them –volunteering her time and being available to answer questions as people needed. With the knowledge gained through her understanding of

Sponsored by TD Commercial Bank

with a passion for criminal law, Daniel soon ventured out into a practice of his own and has been serving as a defence attorney for the last 20 years.

Daniel quickly immersed himself in the Windsor community, becoming active in many charitable organizations. He has been defined as an Amicus Curiae (friend of the court) for his tireless efforts in defending and supporting those with mental illness.

Helping our most vulnerable citizens and becoming a voice for the voiceless has been both a passion and an immeasurable reward throughout his career.

Cowie’s education and training extends far beyond the norm. He incorporates a comprehensive range of techniques in his practice that balance and integrate the mind and body. His demonstrated leadership has contributed to the success of Loaring Physiotherapy & Health Centre, now entering its 18th year of business.

In the community, Cowie has lectured at the Canadian College of Health Science & Technology and has volunteered his medical services at numerous national and international competitions, major games and charitable community events.

community needs, in 2021 she founded Loft 32 Dentistry – a rapidly growing, modern, state-ofthe-art dental practice. Under her direction, Loft 32 practises the philosophy of treating patients with respect and kindness and creating a positive experience for them.

Elena recently co-founded and co-hosted the first annual “Sip for a Riesling” charity event which raised $10,000 for Hiatus House. She loves to volunteer at local schools for oral health presentations, as well as sponsor local sports teams. She considers herself fortunate to be a mentor to both dental students and colleagues looking to start up a practice of their own.

Professional of the Year
Daniel Topp
• 2023 25

ATHENA Leadership Award: Renee Daudlin-Iacobelli

The recipient of the 2023 ATHENA Leadership award, sponsored by BELL, understands what it means to strive toward the highest levels of professional accomplishments, excel in her chosen field and devote time and energy to her community in a meaningful way — all while opening paths so that other women may follow.

Renee Daudlin-Iacobelli is what ATHENA Leadership is all about.

Raised in the small village of Wheatley, she was the youngest of three children born to Pete and Carolyn Daudlin. Her mother was a schoolteacher while her father worked in the commercial fishing industry. Know as a ‘gazelle’ on the track and field team, throughout her school years Renee played pretty much every sport and was active in numerous clubs and volunteer activities, learning early lessons about teamwork, competition and perseverance.

After earning an honours sociology degree from the University of Western Ontario, Renee returned home to begin her career at the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB). She worked fulltime and continued her studies to complete an Art Therapy Diploma (1994) and Masters of Education (Adult Education and Counselling, 2001).

In 1998, she left the WSIB to begin a journey in consulting and entrepreneurship. Renee was the last person to have earned the now-retired Canadian Certified Rehabilitation Counsellor Designation and one of the first among a limited number of professionals in Canada to attain the Canadian Certified Vocational Evaluators designation.

In 1992, she married Richard Iacobelli and together they have just celebrated 30 years of marriage. Richard, Renee and their two beautiful daughters – Hannah, 23, and Lexy, 20 -- live in Leamington. Like her father, Hannah is a mechanical engineer while Lexy is studying architecture at the University of Detroit Mercy.

Sponsored by Bell

Community involvement and volunteerism were early loves that Renee learned from her mother who gave so much of her own time to our community. It was here that she learned kindness, giving to others in need, and doing what she can to make the world a better place for everyone.

In high school, Renee was already spending lunch hours volunteering as a literacy tutor to adults who were new to Canada and while in university, she provided respite care to families. In early adulthood, she volunteered for the thenDistrict Health Council’s Women’s Health Services Task Force and at the same time served as the very first Women’s Director for the Windsor-Essex Learning and Adjustment Board.

After completing these roles and while her daughters were young, she coached girls’ minor baseball for 10 years, mentored the First Robotics team for five years, served as a professional member on the Leamington Accessibilities Committee, was a founding volunteer for the grassroots movement ‘Its ok to not be ok’ and served as a mentor for young women entering the workforce.

An active member of the community, Renee has been part of the Rotary Club of Leamington and is involved in several local projects to improve the lives of the women and youth in our community. She has also held leadership positions on numerous boards including South Essex Community Council, Windsor-Essex Employment Group, Leamington Chamber of Commerce and Leamington Minor Baseball Board.

Extending her talents past our community Renee has held, and/or currently occupies, leadership roles within her professional associations which include the National Vocational Rehabilitation Association and the Canadian Association of Vocational and Work Adjustment Professionals. In addition to Renee’s extensive community involvement, she has been a leader for women in business as well.

• 2023 26

Together with her husband, they own three thriving companies. Their first company, incorporated in 2007, is Lexhan Investments, a consulting and investment company proudly named after their daughters, Lexy and Hannah. In 2009, they started Liquid Capital Midwest, a commercial financing company. And their third company, Insight Advantage, was incorporated in 2011.

Today, Insight Advantage is a national fullservice employment, training and vocational rehabilitation company. With seven offices across Ontario and consultants across Canada, they hold federal, provincial and municipal contracts providing employment support, corporate training and assessment services. In addition to the services that they provide nationally, their Windsor, Leamington and Chatham offices also operate as approved private career colleges under the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.

Renee is quick to point out that Insight Advantage owes its success to its employees and collaborates with local community partners such as the Windsor-Essex Employment Group, Workforce

Windsor-Essex and Leamington District Chamber of Commerce, to name just a few. Together with agencies like these, Insight Advantage has advocated, and created work opportunities, for persons with disabilities across our community.

Mirroring Renee’s life, at Insight they believe in making an impact on their clients and the community. In doing so, they have sponsored and delivered more than 100 Mental Health First Aid training sessions to the Windsor-Essex region and have designed and delivered projects aimed at helping individuals overcome barriers to employment.

“To be selected by, and to join such a prestigious group of women who have received this Award previously makes me feel so special,” Renee says of being named the 2023 ATHENA Leadership Award recipient. “It encourages me to continue to keep reaching higher and give more. To my family, my Insight Advantage team, my friends, my customers, my clients, and to the ATHENA committee…all of you have enriched my life and have helped to make my journey memorable. For this, I thank you!”


LibroisCommitted to Supporting LocalBusinesses


Your LibroRelationship Manager is apartner in your success, aCoach to help youand your business prosper with the products and services that areright foryou.

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Anywhere Businesses 2 x 51.994
• 2023 27
Talk to aLibroCoach today! Br yanMason
Relationship ManagersSmall Business Specialists John Dufour KymRiley SteveTruong
Proud sponsor of the Business ExcellenceAwardsYoung Professional of the Year Award. Good luck to allfinalists! Adrienne Girardin

Entrepreneur of the Year

David Burman - Mister HQ Group

After moving to Windsor-Essex President and CEO of the Mister HQ group, David Burman cultivates innovative progress on a multibusiness platform. He offers home staging and interior design through the Mister Style brand, residential and commercial cleaning services with Mister Maid, vacation rental management under HQ Properties, and home health-care services

Jeff Gamble - What’s Poppin Popcorn Factory

Created by Jeff Gamble in 2009, What’s Poppin Popcorn Company began under many names but officially took form in 2019. A full-service gourmet popcorn company, they offer traditional Kettle cooked popcorn in more than 25 flavours along with retail, gift options, fundraising and custom products. Starting from humble beginnings at local festivals with only Kettlecorn, Jeff turned what began a weekend

Marc Romauldi

As President of Mercato

Fresh, Marc Romauldi has been the driving force in bringing full-service European-style markets to our region. With a focus on local, quality products and people, Marc has established practices from hiring a Red-Seal chef to provide a culinary experience to supporting local suppliers from produce to grocery to fresh Lake Erie fisheries. His philosophy is simple: support our community through local

Sponsored by Grant Thornton

via Mister Care. As part of all of these ventures, David has made a measurable difference across the region by introducing new industries, creating new career opportunities within the community, and propelling businesses into award-winning local solutions to universal problems.

David has taken great pride in Mister HQ Group’s charitable involvement. Over the years they have made generous donations to Windsor-Essex Children’s Aid Society, Windsor Goodfellows, Windsor Life Centre, Backpacks for Success, Gourmet Gardens and No Cold Child with a goal to give back on a regular basis to support those in need.

hobby for the family into a wonderful working relationship with community partners like the Children’s Aid Society as they set up annually on the lawn for fireworks night.

For Jeff, it’s always been about family and the community. From the beginning, he has worked closely with local high schools to offer co-op placements with future employment opportunities as well as assisting in fundraising campaigns for dozens of local charities and schools.

Now with 15 employees and three locations in three years What’s Poppin is really hoppin’ and what makes this story such a success is that they got here with no grants, no bank loans and no financial help from anyone.

initiatives and our community supports us.

Wanting to connect to customers, at every station throughout their stores — from the deli in the back to the checkouts — they’ve provided customer complaint/comment cards with the goal to stay tuned into every customer’s concern or compliment and have the ability to pivot offerings based on local preferences.

Under Marc’s direction, Mercato has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to charities such as We Care for Kids, Transition to Betterness, Windsor Outreach for the Homeless ($300,000 in 2021), Hospice, Palliative Care Room upgrades, baseball, hockey, soccer, Brain Tumour Foundation and more.

• 2023 28

Pillars of the Community

Windsor-Essex Pride Fest

Windsor-Essex Pride Fest (WEPF) is a registered nonprofit organization run by a volunteer board of directors that brings together members of the 2-Spirit, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer, Intersex and Asexual (2SLGBTQIA+) community, their friends, allies and supporters in celebration of the unique spirit and culture of our community by producing quality, inclusive and safe events, initiatives and programs to celebrate and enjoy.

Celebrating their 30th anniversary this year,

Women’s Enterprise Skills Training of Windsor Inc. (WEST)

Women’s Enterprise Skills Training of Windsor Inc. (WEST) is an extraordinary organization whose impact is comprehensive and has been part of the ‘journey’ and success for more than 50,000 woman and girls, changing lives and serving Windsor/Essex County through a variety of employment and training programs since 1987.

The agency exists to provide training for severely employment-disadvantaged visible

100 Women Who Care

Maureen Lucas, former president of LucasWorks, and Liz Farano, VP of Douglas Marketing Group, co-founded and launched the 100 Women Who Care Windsor-Essex chapter in 2012.

As women who live, work, volunteer and raise their families in Windsor-Essex, they understand that women alone can do a lot, but with combined forces of caring, compassionate and community-

Sponsored by Motor City Credit Union

they raise awareness of ongoing challenges that still exist including discrimination, exclusion, harassment, assault and many more.

The annual five-day Windsor-Essex Pride Fest is held each August and attracts more than 7,500 people from across southwestern Ontario. Programming includes a flag raising, educational workshops, family entertainment featuring more than 100 local artists/ performers/entertainers, a parade, and a festival. WEPF is currently conducting a comprehensive needs assessment to gather accurate information from the 2SLGBTQIA+community and service providers to establish an informed foundation upon which to develop future programs and services.

minority women to improve their employability in the workforce and or to further their education.

Their programs meet the needs of more than 3,000 women annually from diverse backgrounds including newcomers, Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, LGTBQ+, Women in Skills Trades, Youth and STEM.

Inspiring others to strive to meet their goals, WEST works closely with business and community partners to encourage participants to build skills and confidence.

WEST annually celebrates participants and partners through its annual signature event, International Women’s Day gala, and Journey Towards Success Awards.

minded women, they can truly make a bigger impact and change lives.

Since their inception, 100 Women Who Care Windsor-Essex has raised more than $400,000 for local non-profits in our region. In our busy world, it has become more challenging than ever to do all the things we want to do, including connecting to our local community and giving back – in time, energy or funding.

Alone, one can ‘give’. Together, the 100 Women Who Care have created a network of support that has the power to truly make a large impact, making our community a better place to live, work and play.

• 2023 29

Company of the Year (over 26 employees)

HGS Limited

HGS Limited is a team of highly qualified professionals who work together to deliver superior structural engineering with full commitment and dedication to exceed client expectations. They provide creative and complex integrated designs that reflect the uniqueness and individuality of each project.

Founded in 1979 with just a couple of employees, HGS today has grown to just under 50 with plans to expand their facility and increase

MOVATI Athletic

Currently operating three locations in the region – Amherstburg, Kingsville and Windsor – as well as 13 others across Ontario and Alberta, MOVATI’s prototype model is not your typical gym. Its unique concept offers a warm, clean, inviting design while accommodating six dedicated studios, two swimming pools, lounges and cafes, women’s-only facilities, personal training, recovery and wellness programs, and 150plus weekly fitness classes. With a focus on

Matthew Thibert Drugs, owner and operator of Shoppers Drug Mart

Matthew Thibert Drugs

LTD (operating as Shoppers Drug Mart) strives to innovate the world of health and wellness services. From online prescription management to virtual visits with healthcare providers, they’re committed to caring for and supporting their customers every day. They strive to be a trusted nutrition, health, beauty and wellness partner while supporting the company’s overarching purpose – Live Life Well. “CORE” values – Care, Ownership, Respect, Excellence – guide their actions

Sponsored by St. Clair College

staff levels over the next few years.

HGS is very involved in the future of local manufacturing, working with St. Clair College and the University of Windsor to offer placements and hands-on training to undergraduate and master’s students, many of whom become fulltime employees upon graduation.

To sustain employee growth and promotion from within, the senior staff act as mentors to intermediate staff, as does intermediate staff to junior staff. This practice has fostered a constant circuit of training and advancement based on proven skills, dedication and goal orientation.

the customer, its airy and spacious clubs offer members a boutique-like sense of community.

In addition to offering leading-edge technology, fitness equipment, programming and spaces to meet member needs, MOVATI has implemented the Net Promoter Score (NPS) program involving quarterly outreach to a section of their membership base asking for feedback on programs, services, equipment and the facility. Club general managers and their teams develop action plans for continuous improvement, including identifying new areas of focus each quarter based on NPS results and feedback.

and decisions to be a better place to work and shop.

Matthew Thibert Drugs takes pride in a culture built on authenticity, trust and connections, where their employees feel comfortable expressing who they are and are building strong relationships. By thinking about not just “what” they do but “how” they go about their work, they are able to deliver an amazing customer experience while achieving sustainable, breakthrough results. Employees are provided with free training and online support materials from their Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee which has most recently included topics such as Trans-Inclusive Store Experience, Serving Customers with Disabilities, and the Black Canadian Shopping Experience.

• 2023 30



But at associates.

meet MOVATI’s high standards of excellence every day to ensure our members have the absolute best experience when they visit our club. But chances are, you’ve already heard that from our club members.

To everyone on our team, we saythank you.

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