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Entrepreneurship Panel: Turning Your Ideas
to Business

Friday, March 12, 2021
2:00 - 3:00 PM MST | 4:00 - 5:00 PM EST

This panel will consist of 3-4 influential and inspiring speakers that will be speaking on the topic of “Turning Your Ideas to Business” while also relating to our theme “Amplify Your Voice: Leave a Legacy”. This discussion will include how our speakers turned their goals and visions into a reality, creating a positive impact on many people. It will also include advice on how to overcome challenges. 

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Rachel Mielke

Founder and CEO

Hillberg & Berk

Rachel Mielke, founder and CEO of Hillberg & Berk, is passionate about creating beautiful jewellery, and empowering women in the process. Her Regina-based luxury jewellery company’s success story is about more than making money; it’s focused on helping make a difference in the world – one sparkle at a time. Through determination and business savvy, the Saskatchewan-born went from a one-woman, kitchen-table-based operation into a multi-mil- lion-dollar company that has contributed

over 10 million dollars in cash and product to organizations focused on the empowerment of women and girls.


As an advocate for women in leadership, Rachel is passionate about sharing her time and expertise with organizations and events across the country in the hopes that women will continue to embrace leadership roles in their lives and push the boundaries of what they think is possible.

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Kristina Botelho



The “kb” in the company is Kristina Botelho, who opened the “fast casual plant-based café” on 104th Street downtown after experiencing the health benefits of a plant based diet. She had previous experience in the restau- rant industry and studied nutrition as well as obtained a certificate as a raw food chef. In June 2016, Botelho unleashed her creations
to the public opening her first location. 1.5 years later, she expanded into the southwest of Edmonton and since then has continued to grow the concept into St. Albert, Kelowna, BC and Calgary. Kristina is extremely passionate in what she does and believes wholeheartedly in the many benefits of a plant based diet and its contribution to your overall health.

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Monika Adams

Sole Proprietor

Monika Social

Monika Adams is the sole proprietor of Monika Social, an Edmonton based marketing consult- ing business that specializes in social media marketing. As a NAIT Alumni, Monika Taylor successfully completed a marketing diploma and then went on to work in the marketing industry for three years. Seeking to expand her knowledge and skills, Monika went back to NAIT and completed another diploma in human resources while continuing to work full time.


After gaining ten years of industry experience at Home and Land developers, Monika decided it was time to start her own marketing busi- ness. Since beginning her business, Monika was able to build a clientele in which she manages and helps expand their consumer demand through social media reach. Monika’s passion and resilience are reflected in her work through coaching, hosting interactive workshops, public speaking, and more with various local organizations.

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Madeleine Mackenzie

Luxe B Pampas Grass

Madeleine MacKenzie was born and raisedin Nova Scotia, after University she planted strong roots while living in California for over a decade. She quickly fell in love with the natural beauty found all around the state and brought this inspiration to her Brand Luxe B. Luxe B was started in a storage unit in Temecula, California, and was transplanted back to Canada in 2019. Luxe B has a United States and Canadian Online Shops and Now a Retail space in Nisku, Alberta. They thrive to inspire home decor and wedding enthusiasts to “DIY” their own flowers for the home or event. Follow them along on Instagram, you are sure to be inspired.


Instagram: @luxebpampasgrass

Retail Panel: From Courses to Corporates - How to Land a Job in Retail

Friday, March 12, 2021
3:00 - 4:00 PM MST | 5:00 - 6:00 PM EST

Spend an hour with the women behind some of the biggest brands in retail and hear their stories of how they landed the jobs they’re in today. This panel will consist of 3-4 influential speakers who will be sharing their experiences and journeys of the transition from university to the workforce, and how they left their legacy along the way. The first 40 minutes will be a moderated discussion, followed by a 20 minute Q&A period for any questions you may have. 


Melody Woo

Senior Project Analyst


Melody is a Senior Project Analyst at Aritzia, bringing the business’s biggest goals to life.


Melody graduated from the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University with honours, first class distinction - and made her mark in and out of the classroom.


She studied digital marketing during her exchange in France and translated her learnings on campus, working part-time as a marketing consultant and founding Canada’s first undergraduate product management program.


Prior to joining Aritzia, Melody’s greatest professional achievement was managing Shell’s portfolio of marketing programs across Canada and securing a client that contributed $3 million+ in net sales.

CAPM-designated, today she delivers high-profile projects at Aritzia’s Project Management Office and is working towards earning her PMP.

Over the last 3 years, she has served as a career coach and mentor for 15+ students and has partnered with brands including Luluelmon to market products on her social media channels. She has also been invited to speak at her high school and Queen’s University on career motivation, personal branding, and overcoming challenges.


She plans to continue in this direction and use her voice to leave a lasting legacy to inspire and empower others to achieve their dreams.

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Nina Neimarlija

Senior Specialist of Retail Development Tiffany and Co.

Nina Neimarlija is a Senior Specialist of Retail Development at Tiffany & Co.

She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. Her career at Tiffany & Co. began shortly after that where she held various roles in Operations and Retail Management.


After four years in Edmonton, Nina was promoted to the corporate head office in Toronto where she began her role in Client Development with a most recent promotion into Retail Development. In Toronto, Nina completed her MBA at the Schulich School of Business with a focus on Brand Management.


Melissa Gavin

Alberta Zone Sales Director


Melissa Gavin currently leads the Alberta field sales team and is responsible for delivering annual sales plans through strong retail exceution. Melissa is also passionate about supporting the development of her people. She has spent he last 15 years of her career with Pepsico in various roles within field and customer sales.


Melissa lives in Calgary with her husband, 2 children and 2 dogs and loves to spend time with them. She also enjoys yoga, travelling and most recently riding her Peloton.

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Rosy Moore

Board Director and Co-Chair of Volunteer Engagement
Business Alumni Association

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Rosy Moore is a dynamic and highly experienced retail executive. A passionate leader who is focused on developing talent, achieving operational excellence, and delivering exceptional customer service. With over 25 years in retail, Rosy has held various leadership roles with the Hudson’s Bay Company and Victoria’s Secret. She has mentored many new and upcoming leaders throughout her career which has helped her become a better leader. Rosy believes that great leaders recognize that leadership is not a solo act but a team effort. She has been recognized and awarded for exceed- ing various key metrics which she attributes to the hard work, dedication, and support from her teams.


Rosy holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree and a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of Alberta. In 2017, she completed her MBA from the Alberta School of Business. She is always challenging herself to learn new things and staying current with today’s business trends. Rosy is a proud alumna and is dedicated to giving back to her alma mater.


Rosy is currently a Board Director on the Business Alumni Association (BAA) at the Alberta School of Business. Rosy is also the proud Chair of her daughter’s School Advisory Council at St. Edmund Elementary and Junior High School. She currently lives in Edmonton with her husband Steven and their 14-year-old daughter Alexa. Rosy is an avid reader and enjoys spending time with her family.

Marketing Panel: What is Purpose Driven-Marketing?

Saturday, March 13, 2021
10:00 - 11:00 AM MST | 12:00 - 1:00 PM EST

This panel will consist of 3-4 influential and inspiring marketing experts that will be speaking on the topic of “What is Purpose-Driven Marketing?” while also relating to NEW’s conference theme “Amplify Your Voice: Leave a Legacy.” 


This discussion is to spark a conversation about purpose-driven marketing and answer questions such as the following:

  1. What does purpose-driven marketing look like?

  2. What does it mean for a company to have a purpose and have something bigger than just its products and services? 

  3. How do purpose-driven marketers navigate a COVID-19 world?

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Erika Navarra

Account Manager
ZGM Modern Marketing Partners

A strategic and creative thinker, Erika loves working with her teams to develop thoughtful solutions to complicated problems. After graduating from the Alberta School of Business in 2014 with a major in Marketing and International Business, she started her career at Poppy Barley
(an Edmonton-based ethical footwear company) before transitioning to the world of advertising. Erika is currently an Account Manager at ZGM Modern Marketing Partners, Alberta’s largest independent marketing agency, where she helps organizations build their brand through establishing and living their purpose. In addition, Erika is passionate about community building and has sat on the board for the Advertising Club of Edmonton as well as co-leading ZGM’s Equity & Diversity team.

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Jessica Leung

Vice President, Global Marketing Higher Ground Education

Jessica is a senior global brand strategy and product marketing leader experienced in building brands and leading high-performing teams across venture-backed start-ups and Fortune 500 (formerly with Procter & Gamble, EA Games).

Jessica is currently the Vice President of Global Marketing at Higher Ground Education, a purpose-driven, high-growth organization with over 80 brick & mortar Montessori schools across US, Europe and China and a portfolio virtual digital education offerings.

She is an advocate for advancing the careers of women through her work as co-founder and director of Forward Together, a not for profit organization partnered with over 20+ companies such as Facebook, Salesforce, PepsiCo, and Starbucks, who are committed to advancing women in their workplaces.


She is the winner of the Cannes Lions Young Marketers award and recipient of the global P&G-Facebook innovation award. Originally from Edmonton, AB, she considers herself a proud alumni of the University of Alberta School of Business and now currently resides in Toronto.

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Melissa Spetich

Campus and Events Marketing Coordinator
Victoria’s Secret PINK

Melissa Spetich is the Campus and Event Coordinator at Victoria’s Secret PINK. She attained her Bachelors in Fashion Merchandising at Kent State University. She has been with the brand for over 4 years starting as a campus rep in her senior year of college. In the last year, she has gone from managing the PINK bus tour all over the US and has now moved into her current role of Campus Rep Manager! She now oversees all 100+ campuses and helps them bring the magic of PINK to their campus!

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Keon Zhang

General Manager for Essie, Maybelline and NYX Professional Makeup Canada L’Oreal Canada

Keon started his career at L’Oréal just over 13 years ago as a marketing intern. From this point, he worked his way throughout the com4pany in various positions working on product, sales, growth and transformation up until his current role as General Manager for Essie, Maybelline and NYX. He worked in multiple categories such as haircolor, skincare, haircare, suncare and color cosmetics on a wide range of brands such as L’Oréal Paris, Garnier, Vichy, La Roche Posay, NYX, Maybelline and Essie.

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HR Panel: Diversity in the Workplace and How to Stand Out in Job Applications

Saturday, March 13, 2021
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM MST | 1:00 - 2:00 PM EST

This panel will consist of 3-4 influential and inspiring speakers that will be speaking on the topic of “Diversity in the Workplace & How to Stand Out in Job Applications” while also relating to our theme “Amplify Your Voice: Leave a Legacy”. That is, how you ensure that all employees can find their voice through diversity and inclusion in your organization, and also what makes potential candidates stand out during the application process. This can include policies, laws, and tips and tricks based on personal expertise.

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Noelle Devlin

Branch Manager of Talent Acquisition, Service and Solutions
City of Edmonton

Noelle is the Branch Manager of Talent Acquisition, Service and Solutions with the City of Edmonton. Her areas of responsibility include talent acquisition, pension, benefits and payroll, as well as workforce analytics and business solutions.


Previously, Noelle spent eight years in various senior leadership roles within both human resources service delivery and employment policy capacities, including supporting total compensation policy and employee pension plans for the Government of Alberta.


Over the past 20 years Noelle has led transformation work in support of major initiatives within government, including supporting significant legislative changes, implementing new organizational structures, and in transitioning to new enterprise platform solutions.


Noelle aspires to the City of Edmonton leadership competencies and in particular to being a collaborative networker, creative innovator, and an inclusive leader. Noelle has had the opportunity to serve in both federal and provincial jurisdictions, and is now excited to extend her experience at the municipal level.

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Mandy Russell

Talent Acquisition Specialist Crescent Point Energy

Mandy Russell is Crescent Point Energy’s Talent Acquisition Specialist. With more than 10 years of recruiting and HR experience in the Oil & Gas industry. Her areas of expertise include developing recruiting strategies, candidate sourcing and conducting interviews for a wide range of functional areas and compensation levels. She has been with Crescent Point Energy for 3 years, and previously worked in a variety of roles in recruitment with Repsol and Suncor Energy.

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William Maitre

Talent Acquisition Consultant
L’Oreal Canada

William Maitre majored in Psychology and completed his master’s degree in Industrial Relations both at University of Montreal. While completing his Master’s degree, he was work- ing as a headhunter for a recruiting agency. After a year at the agency, he joined L’Oréal in 2019 as a Talent Acquisition Advisor where he get to leverage his recruitment expertise for the group. He leads the L’Oréal Brandstorm competition as well as the internship program and is responsible for campus relations and events across Canada. He also works on differ- ent types of recruitments for the Head Office needs while expanding Employer Branding.

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Ashley Hipson

Talent Acquisition Specialist

Enterprise Holdings

Ashley Hipson is the Talent Acquisition Specialist at Enterprise Holdings responsible for all hiring in Western Canada. After graduating from Mount Allison University with a Bachelor of Commerce, Ashley started her career at Enterprise in their Management Trainee program. She immediately jumped into her career and took advantage of the opportunities Enterprise had to offer. She was an assistant manager and then a Branch Manager across five different locations in Alberta.


When an opening in Talent Acquisition caught her eye, Ashley applied and has never looked back. She has had a variety of responsibilities and territories in her time in TA and most recently she hires for Enterprise’s Management Trainee program for Western Canada, the very program she started in!

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Erin Eros

HR Lead for Western Canada

Frito Lay, PepsiCo

Erin leads the HR function for the Western Sales team at PepsiCo Foods Canada. She has been with the organization for 10 years, and has supported both Sales and Supply Chain functions in various HR roles. Erin has a pas- sion for leading teams and developing talented young leaders and HR professionals. She is a Bachelor of Commerce graduate of Memorial University of Newfoundland and holds her CPHR designation. She is based in Calgary, AB where she lives with her husband and two kids, ages 3 & 6.

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Finance Panel: Taking Ownership of Your Finances and Future

Saturday, March 13, 2021
2:00 - 3:00 PM MST | 4:00 - 5:00 PM EST

This panel will consist of three experienced, knowledgeable, and well-respected finance experts that will be speaking on the topics of investments and mortgages while referencing the theme "Amplify Your Voice: Leave a Legacy." Finance is a field known to be male dominated, so getting these quintessential advice and tips from amazing women dominating the finance field will help you take charge of your finances and conquer your future. 


The panellist will be speaking on why investing early is crucial in attaining financial freedom and ways to start investing. For mortgages, they will discuss the steps and finances required to attain a mortgage.

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Jennifer Savill


In a career of over 25 years in the financial services industry, Jennifer has twice been recognized with an RBC Leo award for exceptional commitment to client care and exemplifying RBC values.


Jennifer has an undergraduate degree (BA Economics), and a Masters Degree in Business Administration, both from the University of Alberta. She is both a Certified Financial Planner and a designated Personal Financial Planner.


Jennifer is recognized as a thought leader in her organization and is committed to support- ing the financial well-being of her clients.

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Ann Bawden, CIM

AVP, Portfolio Manager

CWB Wealth Management

As a portfolio manager, Ann builds client relationships, designs and implements investment policy statements, and manages the overall asset allocation of client portfolios to ensure long-term financial goals and objectives are met.


With over 7 years of experience in the wealth management industry, working exclusively at boutique portfolio management firms, Ann has developed a passion for a high-touch client experience and building strong personal rela- tionships.


She received her Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Alberta with distinction and has been a registered portfolio manager since earning the Chartered Investment Manager (CIM) designation in 2015. During her time at the University of Alberta, Ann was a senior member of the Business Exchange Association (BEA) and spent a semester studying abroad in Uppsala, Sweden.

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Tessa Moir

Private Banker
BMO Private Wealth

At BMO Private Wealth, wealth planning is at the core of everything we do. To gain a deep understanding of our client’s wealth picture, Tessa asks thoughtful questions and works with her clients to develop comprehensive and flexible wealth plans for their unique situation. Tessa will bring a team of Private Wealth professionals together to offer fully integrated wealth solutions (banking, lending, investment management, trust, estate and business succession planning needs) to help clients achieve their personal wealth goals.

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Manuela Opris

Client Care Manager
Royal Bank of Canada

Manuela is a Manager Client Care with a 13 years of experience performing a wide variety of finance services and management duties.

She is a powerful force in the work place and uses her positive attitude and tireless energy to encourage other to work hard and succeed.

Manuela has been recognized with RBC LEO award for leading the team to deliver an exceptional client experience that ensures client needs are met.

Manuela has graduated from the Economic and Finance George Baritiu College in Hermannstadt, Transylvania.

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Not-For-Profit Panel: How to Make an Impact

Saturday, March 13, 2021
3:00 - 4:00 PM MST | 5:00 - 6:00 PM EST

This panel will consist of 3-4 influential and inspiring speakers that will be speaking on the topic of “How to Make an Impact” while also relating to our theme “Amplify Your Voice: Leave a Legacy”. That is, how they have stood up for causes they care about, how they have transformed their passions into purpose, giving back to the community, and how they have used their voice, resources, and action to mark an impactful effect on themselves and the people around them.

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Laura Zerbick

Social Impact Manager at Unbounce
Key contributor for the Brands for Better Foundation

Laura Zubick is a purpose-driven communicator, strategic thinker, and relationship-builder who is passionate about driving corporate-so- cial integration. She is currently the Social Impact Manager at Unbounce, a Vancouver-based marketing technology company.

She comes from a background of stakeholder engagement, brand management, and market- ing strategy. Outside of work, Laura loves yoga, hiking, camping, reading, and her three nieces. She’s also a key contributor for the Brands for Better Foundation.

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Nina Neimarlija

Co-founder and Chief Programs Officer at She’s the First

Co-author of Impact: A Step-by-Step Plan To Create the World You Want to Live In

Christen Brandt is the co-founder and Chief Programs Officer at She’s the First, an inter- national NGO dedicated to ensuring girls ev- erywhere are educated, respected, and heard. She is the co-author of Impact: A Step-by-Step Plan To Create the World You Want to Live In.Over the past decade, Christen has sup- ported the efforts of grassroots organizations in 12 countries with the resources and training needed to support more than 12,000 girls. Her training methodologies and advocacy work all revolve around one theme: Listening to girls. In her younger years, Christen experienced the powerlessness that too often accompanies girlhood, and now works every day to ensure girls everywhere can determine their own futures. As part of that commitment, Christen wrote Impact as a guidebook for readers to create sustainable change and build a better future. The book builds on Christen’s expertise in guiding clients, friends, and women’s circles in their journey from intent to impact.

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Kathy Kwon

Heads up Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Bench Accounting


co-Chair of the Social Justice Commit- tee for the board of a DTES housing and poverty-alleviation not-for-profit

Kathy Kwon heads up Diversity, Equity & Inclu- sion at Bench Accounting, a Vancouver-based fintech company change-making through ac- cessible and affordable financial management products and services for small businesses and entrepreneurs. With over 10 years’ experience in systems engineering and people, process, and organizational design across multiple industry sectors, Kathy comes at equity and impact through a holistic, systems approach. She has served on the founding board of a not- for-profit focused on empowering Canadian refugee women in the food industry ecosys- tem, and currently serves as co-Chair of the Social Justice Committee for the board of a DTES housing and poverty-alleviation not-for- profit. Her side hustles and interests include co-founding a socially-minded craft brewery, climbing, and mixing cocktails.

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