Monday October 23, 2017


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Mick Lautt - MC & TTL Facilitator

Conference Host and Keynote Facilitator

Drawing from an exciting career in recreation, business, leadership, and community development, Mick engages his audience with a blend of highly interactive and meaningful facilitation, and the passionate telling of stories from 25 years in the field. 
Following an early start in recreation and leadership at several branches of the Winnipeg YM-YWCA and Camp Stephens, Mick graduated from the University of Manitoba with a degree in Recreation Studies where he focused on leadership, outdoor adventure, and experiential learning. He coordinated and taught the outdoor adventure instructional programs at the UofM Recreational Services over that same period. 
Upon graduating, he co-founded an adventure-education company working primarily with schools, non-profit at risk youth serving agencies, and community groups. 
After operating this business successfully for a decade with a focus on youth and community while simultaneously working as a specialized educational consultant for the Wpg School Division, and teaching several University courses, Mick shifted his focus to leadership training and team development in the corporate world. 
Concurrently, during that shift, Mick continued to teach outdoor adventure programs and founded a private kayaking school that is still in operation today. 
Taiga Consulting, his current training and development practice, was founded in 2004 and in addition to building his national client base, has resulted in several professional service relationships including his role as Director of Corporate Retreats and Team Learning, and Wilderness Guide for a boutique travel learning company; specialized Senior Consultant for a national Human Resource firm; and founding CEO of an international bio-tech company.   
Mick has served on 15 community boards, many of a national and provincial scope, and has spearheaded several successful recreationally focused clubs and community projects. 
Mick and his wife Lisa live on the northern edge of Riding Mountain National Park, with their two 2 sons, 4 dogs, 2 cats, and the occasional horse. He is an avid whitewater kayaker, adventure racer, Taekwondo martial artist and Yoga practitioner.

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Gillian Richards

Gillian Richards is a researcher from Brandon University, working with the Rural Development Institute, researching Manitoba's food processing industry since 2013. She has interviewed many food processors and others involved in the food processing industry. This included case-studies of 8 successful bulk food processing companies in Manitoba, most of which were producing either organic or functional food.  101 Ideas is a collection of profiles of Manitoba rural food innovators, there is room for more before we reach 101; and RIM (Rural Innovation in Manitoba), a GF2 funded project researching commercialization processes, barriers and supports for Manitoba food processors.

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Ashley and Jessica Houle - A Plus Plumbing

A Plus Plumbing and Heating has been in operation since March 2015 and is owned and operated by Ashley and Jessica Houle. Ashley is a journeyman plumber and gasfitter who took over Durston Plumbing and Heating in 2015.

We currently employ five full-time and one part-time staff.

We both grew up in rural Manitoba and after graduating from college in Brandon, moved to Dauphin where we have resided since 2005. We love living in rural Manitoba, and have a family of three young boys that were born and raised in Dauphin. It has been a challenging yet rewarding journey that has provided us with so many opportunities to learn, to grow and to discover who we are as entrepreneurs.

A big part of our success is owed to the people who supported us and joined our team from the early days to present; we work with a great group and we enjoy what we do!

Jason Gobeil - Brandon Urban Aboriginal Peoples Council

Jason has been engaged with the community of Brandon for a number of years with his involvement in youth career counselling and project management with both Career & Employment Youth Services and the Manitoba Metis Federation Southwest Region's Metis Employment and Training Department, and now finds his involvement still active with community from a municipal perspective. 

Jason is committed to work in his community with positive reflections of culture and has recently worked on establishing an Aboriginal Economic Strategic Plan for the city of Brandon and by developing a Memorandum of Understanding with the city of Brandon for improved relations and communications in the areas of Aboriginal Youth Employment, Aboriginal Education and the inclusion of Aboriginal Business opportunities. 

Jason's approach to working with the community is at a grassroots level and his door is always open if you are ever looking to find out more information about local opportunities and initiatives with the city of Brandon.

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Sasha Golding - Silver Frame Productions

Sasha of Silver Frame Productions has always believed in the importance of families preserving, sharing and enjoying their photo and home video collections from days gone by. She started by offering keepsake montage-style videos for family occasions, and then began designing marketing and informational videos for small businesses and organizations.

She was amazed at the large photo and slide collections that many families had or had inherited, so she also began offering organizing, scanning and digitizing services to help the families that were overwhelmed with this task. Sasha enjoys the variety that comes with being a wife, mother, community volunteer and rural Manitoba small business owner.

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Kelly Hunter - Gone Scrappin' in Bloom

My name is Kelly Hunter, and I am a wife, mother of 3 kids and owner of Gone Scrappin' In Bloom in Rossburn, Manitoba.

I graduated from Hospitality & Tourism, having decided early on that someday I would own my own business. After travelling and gaining work experience, I moved back home to Rossburn to get married and raise a family. While working full time, I opened Gone Scrappin', selling scrapbooking supplies in a corner of my mom's flower shop. I was promoted to a dream job as Marketing Coordinator, but felt the goal of opening my own business full time becoming more of an option! While on mat leave with my second child I decided it was finally time to take the leap!  Off main street was a vacant 1939 general store that I had always loved. With a lot of history, character and TLC, I purchased it. In January 2008 this beautiful historic old building became mine, I purchased my mom's flower business, and officially opened as Gone Scrappin' In Bloom, selling fresh flowers, scrapbooking supplies, gifts and specialty café. Only to then find out I was expecting baby number 3! It has been a crazy journey ever since.

In 2011, I received the Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist Award for the Women Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.

The store has never been just a retail and cafe space, but was began as a place for gatherings and events. We host Home Routes Concerts, Art & Craft Retreats, Art Classes for Children & Adults, Photography Workshops, Gallery Nights, Tea Tastings, Santa Photos and so much more! It is a soul soothing place as soon as you enter to discover and explore!

Everyday I feel that I am living the life I imagined. As you can imagine with 3 kids, dog, husband who is a gravel contractor and both of us being community involved, our house is normally a zoo. We are busy and we enjoy it. The store is a second home for us and a place I sometimes take a break too for some quiet moments to refresh. It is a place that truly soothes the soul for everyone - including my family.

I have always believed life is too short to not be making your dreams come true. And in my opinion, you can't just have one dream! My best advice I can give, is if you are passionate, know what you want, do not take no for an answer. Create Plan B or C and make your dream a reality.

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Stacey Purdey - Hodge Podge

Stacy Purdey comes by her entrepreneurial spirit quite naturally. Her innovative parents have been guiding her since she was a little girl making cotton candy and counting coins in a concession stand. After many other adventures and learning experiences, Stacy still works closely with her family at Hodge Podge in Dauphin, MB.

She strives to engage customers through creative merchandising, marketing and events but also enjoys working behind the scenes to help keep things running smoothly. Stacy is a proud wife and mother who enjoys travels but is always happy to return to the community she calls home.

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Breakfast Panel - Katie Pernarowski

Katie obtained her bachelor of commerce degree with distinction from the University of Saskatchewan in 2009. She articled at MNP in Saskatoon and obtained her Chartered Accountant designation in 2011.
Katie moved to Dauphin in 2013 where she and her husband started farming (they currently have 190 black angus cattle), and she transferred to the MNP in Dauphin. Her primary focus has been helping small business owners and farmers come up with cost-effective solutions that help them stay competitive and profitable.

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Breakfast Panel - Clayton Swanton

Clayton was born and raised in Dauphin and graduated from the DRCSS in 2000. He completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in 2004 from the University of Manitoba and received his Bachelor of Laws degree in 2008 from the University of New Brunswick.  Clayton was a summer student with Johnston and Company in 2007 and he joined the firm in 2008 as an Articling Student.  Upon receiving his call to the Bar in 2009, Clayton continued as an Associate and became a Partner in 2014.

Clayton is highly involved with the Rotary Club where he served as Club president for the 2011-2012 year and is a director of the Manitoba MudRun.  Clayton is also a past Board Member of the Countryfest Community Cinema where he served on the Board during the construction phase of the project and through its first year of operation.  Clayton currently sits on the Board of Directors as Vice-President of the Gilbert Palins Golf and Country Club.

Preferred areas of practice are Civil Litigation, Real Estate and Corporate/Commercial.

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Breakfast Panel - Steve Ganczar

Steve Ganczar is a Senior Lender Agriculture & Commercial with Catalyst Credit Union, Dauphin Branch.  He started his financial career in 2008 and has worked closely with many Parkland small businesses to start up or expand.  He prides himself on his extremely loyal client base and their successes.

Steve grew up in the Dauphin area and still operates the family farm.  Steve is married to Carissa and has a 2-year-old little girl named Hayley. 

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