To sum up the night with a quote from a favorite book "Brilliance - Uncommon Voices for Uncommon Women" (at my store LOL) states: Brilliance may be difficult to describe, but we all know it when we see it. It's a bright idea. a daring decision, an ingenious insight, a soaring aspiration or a wise compassionate action. This quote describes this fabulous evening to a tee by celebrating all of the very talented and brilliant women that night!
Brett & I had a blast! The night began with a VIP cocktail room for finalists and sponsors. All 23 finalists were just buzzing with excitement! I was so nervous to say the least!
We were then directed to enter onto the red carpet as we were individually announced, pause for the camera flashes... and presented a beautiful statue with our name engraved! Dinner was delicious and we had great speakers from government officials to other businesses to congratulate us all on such an achievement! The gala, MC'd by Maralee Caruso, CTV News Anchor, was well attended, with more than 450 people.They then played video bio clip on each finalist right before their respective categories and then the winners announced with an official envelope opening! It was like being at the Oscars.
My name wasn’t called but the experience and achievement of being a finalist is such an honour! All of these women were of outstanding caliber - it was great to meet them and was truly an amazing lifetime moment for me! This was not an easy task to be a finalist. After less then a couple of weeks to submit a very extensive book highlighting the growth and story of GSIB, and then succeed through the judging process and to be recognized by the judges as a finalist worthy, is not an easy feat, and all of these women are very special to be recognized!
"Each and every one of our 23 finalists are to be commended on their success in business. We take pride in the integrity of our submission and judging process and anyone named as a finalist is certainly a successful business woman. The nine women who won Awards in ten categories on May 20th will join an esteemed group of Woman Business Owners who have stood before them as winners of these prestigious awards,” said Christine Dubyts, President of WBOM and President of Dubyts Communications Inc. "Launching and running a business is a challenge for anyone. Being a woman business owner brings with it a unique set of challenges and it takes a true entrepreneurial spirit to embrace those challenges, managing risk andultimately reaping the rewards. The Woman Entrepreneur of the Year gala is our opportunity to recognize and celebrate these successful women.” Women represent a growing economic force in Canada:
· There are more than 821,000 women entrepreneurs in Canada.
· Women in Canada make up a larger share of the self-employed than in any other country.· Women contribute in excess of $18 billion to Canadian economy each year.
· Since 1976, the average annual growth rate for self-employed women has been 5.3% compared with 2.2% for men.
· One-third of self employed Canadians are women.
· Women entrepreneurs hold ownership in about 45% of Canadian small and medium enterprises.
Each day I am living the life I have imagined. As women entrepreneurs our life is full of everyday cares, concerns, commitments, our dreams, hopes and plans, our mistakes, setbacks & triumphs. Sure there is a lot of stress, anxiety, and major juggling but I wouldn't change it for the world.
Thank you everyone for your warm wishes, good lucks and lots of hugs!!
It is with deep felt thanks to the continued support from my husband, children, our parents, my GSIB Girls, close friends and customers. Without their support GSIB wouldn't be so successful. They helped put wings on my dreams to soar. I can only imagine where my dreams will take me next!
I hope my story inpsires other women to trust their dreams and take a leap! Thank you!