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By Krista Ross

November 18 – 24 was global entrepreneurship week. As a chamber of commerce, we work hard to support, encourage and celebrate entrepreneurship and sometimes it makes sense to stop and look at the success of our business community as it relates to entrepreneurship, leadership and innovation. As business owners, managers and leaders, it is easy to get caught up in the day-to-day operations of our businesses so as you read this article – I encourage you to take a moment to really think about what success looks like and to recognize how much of it we have right here in our community. We have so many successful businesses and entrepreneurs who get up each morning, focus on their business and their employees and find new ways to provide their products and services to our community, our province and even globally. We need to make these successes part of our collective story!

In celebration of global entrepreneurship week, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce asked for some quotes from businesses about what it take to be an entrepreneur. One of our members, Phillip Curley of HotSpot Parking said this:

“We are happy to be able to contribute through business. Building products that help our customers live an easier life is empowering and endlessly motivating.”

It is also endlessly motivating to the rest of us when business leaders like Phillip – who was also recognized as being one of the Top 30 Under 30 in Atlantic Canada by Atlantic Business Magazine – can have this positive attitude and big picture thinking that goes beyond their individual product or service.

In October we hosted the annual Fredericton Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards. At that event – we celebrated businesses, not-for-profits, and business leaders who have reached the pinnacle of success – and we look at what they have done, how they’ve done it and we feel inspired to continue to work towards the goals of our own businesses. I am so proud of these Chamber members who are the recipients of 2019 Business Excellence Awards:

  • Spacek, Armstrong & Norrad Chartered Professional Accountants Resilience Award: Crowne Plaza Fredericton Lord Beaverbrook Hotel
  • Credit Unions Small Business Award: The Medicine Shoppe Brookside
  • Jim Gilbert’s Wheels & Deals Not-For-Profit Organization Award: Habitat for Humanity
  • Elliott McCrea Hill Community Involvement Award: Liberty Utilities
  • Wilson Insurance Ltd. Start-up Award: My Closet Consignment
  • CBDC Southwest Large Business Award: Exit Realty
  • Opportunities NB (Opportunités NB) Business Person of the Year Award: Sara Holyoke

We have so much to celebrate in our entrepreneurial ecosystem – Fredericton was recently recognized as one of the Top 21 Smart Cities globally by the Intelligent Communities Forum. We also had a total of five entrepreneurs from our community recognized as Top 30 Under 30 in Atlantic Canada by Atlantic Business Magazine. Planet Hatch received the employer community partner excellence award from Future Ready NB and Larry Shaw, CEO of Ignite Fredericton was recognized by Startup Canada with their national Entrepreneur Promotion Award for advancing the culture and environment for entrepreneurship in Canada. UNB was recently recognized as one of Canada’s Top 50 research universities. Lia Daborn – ED of APEGNB was recognized by the Canadian Society of Association Executives with their Pinnacle award which recognizes exceptional and outstanding leadership in the association sector. Bulletproof’s Steven Burns and NBPower’s Gaëtan Thomas were both inducted into the JA NB Business hall of fame for their leadership and outstanding achievements. Fredericton-based augmented reality company Kognitive Spark has been named to the Companies to Watch list as part of the Deloitte Fast 50 awards while Introhive was recognized as one of the Top 10 fastest growing technology companies in the Deloitte Fast 50. Naveco Power recently received the 2019 Energy and Renewables award at Conservation Council of NB’s 50th Anniversary Eco Hero Gala recognizing their contribution to environmental / clean energy technology in New Brunswick. The list goes on.

Let’s be inspired to greatness, let’s look at the big picture, let’s grow our business community and build on the success that we have and look to the future with anticipation and enthusiasm. There may be times when we get very focused on politics, or on challenges and difficulties – but let’s not forget about the greatness that we have right here in Fredericton.

As we enter a new year – let’s work together to grow our business community – to celebrate success and to motivate and support each other – the chamber’s mission is to “Help business improve, innovate and grow through networking, shared services, advocacy and events.” We pledge to keep doing our part and if there are things we can do to help you – we want to hear from you! Our vision is to create a ‘stronger community through business prosperity’. We wish each and every one of you the business prosperity that will help our community to grow as we enter a new decade!

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