Financial Feminism: Sharing the Wealth

How can Canada’s economy reach its potential if 51% of the population isn’t fully participating?

Women make up 51 per cent of the population, yet female-funded businesses only receive 4 per cent of venture capital. Through education, knowledge sharing and mentorship we can help women achieve the feats we all know they are capable of.

Join us as we celebrate the launch of the Financial Feminism Investment Lab – a partnership between the University of Calgary and The51 to create easier access to women-led capital for women-led businesses.

Hear from women advocates and leaders, including the founders of The51, and participate in thoughtful conversations. Whether you’re an investor, an entrepreneur or an ally helping break down barriers, learn how we can empower women to activate their capital, drive innovation and advance the Canadian economy, while improving gender equality.

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Breakout rooms

Dr. Alice de Koning. Senior Instructor, Haskayne School of Business, University of Calgary

Dr. Alice de Koning is Academic Director for the Hunter Hub for Entrepreneurial Thinking alongside her teaching role at the Haskayne School of Business. Dr. de Koning teaches both strategy and entrepreneurship courses, to undergraduate and graduate students. She has a vision for a Calgary full of entrepreneurial thinking and entrepreneurial talent, joining everyone from artists and teachers, to digital media and geomatics nerds, to finance and government wonks, to create smart solutions and positive impact at home and around the world. 

Kanwal Bokhari, Academic Advisor, Financial Feminism Investing Lab, University of Calgary

Kanwal is the academic advisor of the Financial Feminism Investing Lab, a collaboration between the Haskayne School of Business, The51, and the Canadian Women’s Foundation Investment Readiness Program. She also teaches courses at the graduate and undergraduate level in entrepreneurship and innovation at the Haskayne School of Business. Kanwal is a doctoral student at the Haskayne School of Business, and her research focuses on the role of interpersonal relationships in the investment decisions of early-stage investors such as business angels and venture capitalists.

Keri Damen, Executive Director, Hunter Hub for Entrepreneurial Thinking, University of Calgary

Keri is passionate about the new work of world and how everyone from students to leaders can use entrepreneurial thinking to survive and thrive in a rapidly changing world. At the Hunter Hub for Entrepreneurial Thinking, she is dedicated to creating the next generation of changemakers who will positively transform lives and societies, helping to achieve UCalgary’s vision to be Canada’s most entrepreneurial university. The Hunter Hub fosters and supports entrepreneurial thinking by building programs, initiatives, and synergies in innovation for students and faculty across the campus, classroom and greater community environments.

Jordana Armstrong, Associate Director, Clinical & Social Innovation, Innovate Calgary

Meet the host

Tara Webber, MBA’17

Tara Weber, MBA’17, Emcee

Journalist, BNN Bloomberg

Tara is a graduate of the MBA program in Global Energy Management and Sustainable Development at the University of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business. She joined the BNN Bloomberg team in August 2015 as a Western Correspondent based out of Calgary.

Meet the panelists

Deborah Yedlin, MA

Deborah Yedlin

Chancellor, University of Calgary

Community leader and Calgary journalist Deborah Yedlin was elected the 14th chancellor of the University of Calgary, effective July 1st, 2018.

Yedlin has been observing, commenting and writing about business and politics for more than two decades, as a journalist for the Financial Post, Globe and Mail and Calgary Herald newspapers.

Geeta Sankappanavar

Geeta Sankappanavar

Board Chair, University of Calgary

Geeta serves as the Chair of the Board of Governors for the University of Calgary. She is the founder and CEO of Akira Impact, an essential assets investment firm that invests to support UN Sustainable Development Goals 5, 6, 7 and 12. Prior to Akira, she was co-founder and President of Grafton Asset Management, a ~$1B energy investment firm based in Calgary Alberta.

Heather Christie-Burns

Heather Christie-Burns, BSc'94

Energy Entrepreneur and Director, Interface Fluidics Limited

Heather is an energy entrepreneur and corporate director with experience founding, scaling and selling two companies. She is an Associate at the Creative Destruction Lab, a member of the University of Calgary’s Board of Governors, a mentor for technical and financial professionals, and was recognized as one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women of 2018 in the CIBC “Trailblazers and Trendsetters” Category by the WXN.

Judy Fairburn

Judy Fairburn, BSc'85, MSC'88

Founder, Co-CEO, The51

Judy is a change-maker with a proven track record of building cutting-edge business ventures. A pioneer in corporate/entrepreneurial open innovation, she co-founded an innovative $100 million cleantech/digital fund.  She is a Creative Destruction Lab Fellow, UCalgary engineering alumni, Calgary Economic Development and corporate board director. She has C-suite business experience, including roles as Chief Digital Officer and EVP Business Innovation. Judy was recently recognized with the 2020 Calgary Influential Women in Business Lifetime Achievement Award.

Shelley Kuipers

Shelley Kuipers

Founder, Co-CEO, The51

Shelley is hellbent on taking the status quo, turning it upside down, then transforming it with more equitable, feminist, corporately sound and ecologically sustainable options.

Previous to co-founding The51, Shelley founded crowdsourcing company Chaordix and software development and marketing firm, Stormworks. She is also currently Co-founder of consumer participation company IOVIA, family office Adventure Capital, and Harris Kuipers.

Alice Reimer

Alice Reimer, BSc’99, MBA’03

Founder, The51

Alice is a successful tech entrepreneur, and dedicated community mentor and leader. Currently she is the CEO of Fillip and the Site Lead for Creative Destruction Lab. Alice also co-founded Calgary-based Evoco and was the CEO of Chaordix, a pioneering software leader in the crowdsourcing and open innovation space.