- Understand how these Black entrepreneurs use business to address racial barriers, systemic racism and shift perceptions in the business community
- Learn about resources to support Black businesses and their endeavors
- Grow from shared lessons learned around the impact of Black-to-Black community entrepreneurship support
With the killing of George Floyd reigniting global movements for racial justice, and the COVID-19 pandemic magnifying long existing societal inequities, Black leadership and entrepreneurship have come into center focus. A critical mass of online graphics in support of local Black-owned businesses have gone viral and opportunities for Black entrepreneurs to gather and skill-share have become more common place.
Join Invest Ottawa on February 18th as we bring together four Black leaders and business owners to address the following question: what role can entrepreneurship play in fostering and leading social change?
Attendees will leave with a broader understanding of how Black entrepreneurs have been using business to address systemic racism and transform racial perceptions. Hear personal stories from Black entrepreneurs who have opened businesses in the last year. Also, learn about resources that support their business endeavors and develop a deeper understanding from lessons learned through Black-to-Black community support of entrepreneurship during this unprecedented time.
Meet the Speakers:
Executive Director, Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity
Debbie is a Black feminist with over 8 years of local and international advocacy experience in a varity of roles ranging from programming and counselling to policy analysis and project management. She is a new Executive Director at the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity (CCGSD).
She has had the pleasure of bridging her passion for social justice with international development at Oxfam Canada and volunteering with feminist organizations like the Ottawa Dyke March, Harmony House Women’s Shelter, and Planned Parenthood Ottawa. She is also a board member of the Venus Envy Access Fund creating funding opportunities for members of the community she loves so much.
When Debbie isn’t yelling into a megaphone at protests or organization events, she’s probably on a field somewhere playing rugby or baking a cake.
Lissa Appiah, MPA, CCS, CRS
Founder & Lead Career Strategist
Lissa is a Certified Career & Resume Strategist and the Founder of WeApply Canada. She helps job seekers and professionals upgrade their career & lifestyle. She offers career coaching, facilitates workshops, and creates career documents.
With 10+ years of experience in the Canadian public service, Lissa now helps others with their next career move. Since 2012, Lissa has helped hundreds of people land interviews and secure employment with well-known employers such as the Government of Canada, RBC, TD Canada Trust, University of Ottawa, IBM, and more.
Lissa has a Master’s in Public Administration from Carleton University and a Bachelor’s in Public Administration & Sociology from the University of Ottawa.
Director (Owner), Spring Point Consulting Services Inc.
Diandra’s entrepreneurial journey began in 2018 when she started working with SMEs across Canada through Spring Point Consulting. She has over a decade of experience providing bookkeeping, payroll and personal tax preparation services to individuals and companies in a variety of industries. She is a fintech enthusiast, always excited to learn about new apps and features to add value to her work. Diandra holds the Certified Professional Bookkeeper designation with CPB Canada and is a candidate for the Payroll Compliance Practitioner (PCP) designation from the Canadian Payroll Association.
As an immigrant to Canada from the Bahamas, Diandra brings a unique international perspective to her work with SMEs and enjoys building valuable, lasting relationships with her clients.
Founder and CEO, Taltis Foods Inc, Toronto
At Taltis Foods Inc, they are a leading manufacturing and distribution company that brings African oriented foods products to Canadians. Under the Taltis Africa brand, they currently offer two lines of beverages and sauces respectively. The beverages include the Lemongrass drink, Ginger drink, Baobab drink, Chia seeds drink and 4 different flavours of Hibiscus drinks. They are also introducing the popular Jollof sauce from the West Africa.
Gilles came in Canada in March 2008. Originally, they are from Cameroon, located in the central part of Africa, but tightly close to Nigeria and Niger on the West part. Gilles have successfully completed a master’s degree in foods processing at the University of Milan in Italy and a post-graduate certificate in Marketing and Management at Centennial college in Toronto. Before fully engaging into business, Gilles taught in a secondary public french-language school in Toronto for about 7 years. In fact, Gilles is a registered member of the Ontario Certified Teacher board and more recently became a member of the Canadian Black Chamber of commerce.
Gilles is passionate about change and innovative ideas that can bring improvement to the life of others and the community. And deeply believes that diversity is a treasure that increases in value just as much as the strength we embrace it with. Gilles is grateful to Canada and to life.