Attracting more women into manufacturing professions is critical to helping companies grow. Our 2nd Annual BC Women in Manufacturing (WIM) Success Forum 2022 will focus on how we engage and inspire young women to consider careers in manufacturing and to help manufacturers attract and retain women in their workplaces. By achieving this, we empower, support, and accelerate women in the industry.
Our forum will take place virtually over the course of two days. Join us on Oct 18 and Oct 20! Learn from thought leaders in manufacturing, attend engaging panel discussions, and be inspired by the stories you hear!
Help CME increase the number of women in manufacturing by 100,000 in 5 years.
Together, We Can Do It!
MANUFACTURING DAY - OCT 18
PROMOTING MANUFACTURING DAY- OCT 20
MANUFACTURING DAY - OCT 18
Learn from manufacturing companies who have successfully attracted and retained women and increased diversity within their organization.
Nancy Morison, VP of the Delta Ophthalmic Laboratory, FYidoctors
Nancy Morison is the VP of the FYidoctors Ophthalmic Lab located in Delta, BC. Delivering on the FYidoctors DNA of ‘Enhancing Life’, Nancy and the team are focused on the daily manufacturing and shipping of over 3000 pairs of the most technically advanced lenses and glasses and supporting the clinics and ultimately the patients as FYidoctors provides the best care and experience in the industry.
Nancy joined FYidoctors in 2017 after senior roles in various industries including online optical with Clearly.ca, online home food delivery with SPUD.ca, IT product management with i2 Technologies and small pack supply chain and logistics with Loomis Express.
Nancy’s informal and genuine leadership style has mentored many individuals on various Operations teams from entry level roles to managers and directors. Her success has been the result of focusing on corporate culture to ensure first that each employee has the same core values and working towards the same targets and objectives. She is equally proud of her team as she is of their accomplishments.
She is a graduate of the University of British Columbia in the field of Human Kinetics with a specialization in leadership and coaching. Nancy was a finalist in the 2013 YWCA Women of Distinction Awards in the Business and Professions category.
A native Vancouverite with a few years in Toronto, Nancy is proud to be working in Delta, the community she has always called home. Weekends and evenings will find Nancy on the links, the basketball court, the slopes, in a pick-up game of ice hockey or at the gym.
Lesley Noland, Chief Operating Officer, Starline Windows
Lesley is the Chief Operating Officer at Starline Windows Ltd. She has been honoured to watch the company grow from a small family business to a multimillion-dollar household name in the window industry over the last 23 years. Lesley and her team are responsible for overseeing the operations management of the company including the daily operations, supply chain, purchasing, continuous improvement, safety, and IT infrastructure.
After spending 15 years in university learning multiple disciplines including accounting, purchasing, marketing, inventory management, operations, and law, she found that leadership was her passion. She completed her BBA – Major in Leadership from Trinity Western University. The journey of learning never ends, and her years of real-world experience have taught her many additional valuable skills.
One of Lesley many passions is enriching the lives of youth and being an active volunteer for the Surrey Board of Trade Youth Entrepreneur Team. Youth are our future, and it is important that they have the tools to be successful and be empowered.
Lesley’s motto is “Never do it alone”. By sharing our knowledge, experience, and resources, together we can be stronger. Lesley thrives on being the catalyst to those around her and inspiring them to be the best they can be.
Lesley’s everyday practice is to live life at the fullest, to give back and help inspire others to find the courage to grow themselves. “A closed door should never stop you. Just use the window.”
Andrew Knowles, Chief Operating Officer, STEMCELL Technologies
Andrew Knowles is the Chief Operating Officer at STEMCELL Technologies, based in Vancouver, Canada. For the last 23+ years, he has dedicated his career to STEMCELL, helping to build the operational capabilities and systems that support manufacturing in Vancouver and distribution centers around the world. He currently leads a fast paced team that is responsible for manufacturing and delivering over 2,500 products supporting life science research working on stem cell, immunology, cancer, regenerative medicine, and cellular therapy research.
Andrew is well known as an approachable and enthusiastic leader who is passionate about relationship and team building and creating environments for career growth and talent recognition. He is an integral part of an executive leadership team focused on driving change in the areas of diversity and inclusion and is proud to support gender equity at all levels in the organization. Andrew graduated from the University of British Columbia in 1999 with an MSc focused on cancer research and has recently engaged in professional leadership development programs with adMare Bioinnovations and the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
In his personal life, Andrew enjoys an active lifestyle including hiking, biking, surfing, hockey and spending time with his wife and 2 children. He is a talented woodworker and enjoys creating interesting and functional pieces from foraged wood found throughout his travels across BC.
Beau Olmstead, Vice President, Commercial Banking, RBC Royal Bank
Since joining RBC Royal Bank in 1997, Beau’s recognized approach to commercial business and creating value for both customers and the firm has lead him to cover many industry sectors including commercial real estate, industrial manufacturing, consumer retail, supply chain, health care and public sector.
His breadth of relationships and reputation for collaborative success had lead Beau to assume leadership responsibilities following work with RBC’s Capital Markets division. In 2007, Beau was appointed Vice President of RBC’s Commercial Financial Services’ Commercial Health Care group in British Columbia, where he leads a team of industry banking specialists. His commercial banking scope was expanded in 2010 to include the Vancouver Commercial Banking centre located on Broadway. In September 2015, shifted responsibility to the South Vancouver/Richmond/Delta market to support continued growth of RBC’s commercial business there.
With a broad range of interests, Beau is committed to both the values of family and community. He has lead several community work projects aimed at giving back to the community and building social capital. Currently Beau is focused on his Executive Board role and community/varsity sport volunteer.
Beau graduated from University of Victoria receiving his Bachelor of Commerce degree, specializing in International Business, and Royal Roads University receiving his Master of Business Administration degree. He is a past associate member of the Canadian College of Health Care Executives.
Silvia Gonzalez-Zamora, MILR, Inclusion and Diversity Practice Leader, Partner, KPMG
Silvia Gonzalez-Zamora is a Partner in the People and Change practice and head of the Inclusion and Diversity service offering at KPMG in Canada. She has a masters in Organizational Behaviour, and her 20 years of experience in Diversity and Inclusion streams into Talent Management, Behavioural Change Management, People Analytics and Employee Experience.
Silvia has a passion for understanding how people bring value as individuals with emotions, needs, and skills, and become part of high-performing teams that are the cornerstone of any successful business. She has been a pioneer in inclusion and diversity leveraging her foundation in organizational behavior, leadership, and social psychology, while adding new methods and tools, such as sentiment analysis, wearables, usability (UX), and lean and agile principles.
Tracy Spear, Co-owner, Humble Manufacturing
Tracy is the Co-owner of Humble Manufacturing, a custom metal fabrication company and vital supply chain partner producing high quality, custom metal parts for a diverse range of customers across Canada.
As a BCIT Alumni, Tracy started her career in the finance industry specializing in both management and sales. Leveraging this expertise has been an asset as she transitioned into the manufacturing industry back in 2017. Since then, Humble Manufacturing has doubled its sales and by doing so has been able to reinvest back into the company with state-of-the-art equipment and provide ongoing staff training in Lean Manufacturing practices and leadership workshops.
Humble Manufacturing has been a long-standing member of the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters (CME). As an advocate for engaging and accelerating women in the manufacturing workforce, Tracy joined the CME Women in Manufacturing (CME WIM) National Board in 2020 and is currently the Chairperson of the CME Women in Manufacturing B.C. Working Group. In addition to this role, Tracy was nominated to the CME BC Advisory Board and actively promotes the overall importance of the B.C. manufacturing industry.
Tracy also enjoys adventures with her family especially skiing and watersports or playing a game of hockey or ringette.
Sim Nesbitt, CPHR, HR and Special Projects Manager, VMAC
Sim is an HR Manager with almost fifteen years of HR experience in many different sectors, including health, tourism, mining and manufacturing.
She has a B.A. in Political Science and Public Administration, Human Resources Management diploma, and have CPHR designation. She has experience in full cycle recruitment, employee and labour relations, performance management, training & development, development and implementation of policies and procedures, compensation, benefits administration, occupational health and safety, union relations and payroll. She has a passion for integrating Human Resources into a key driver of companies’ strategic plans. She has dedicated to maintaining our robust company culture that cultivates customer loyalty by motivating and empowering coworkers to bring their best to the job.
PROMOTING MANUFACTURING DAY- OCT 20
Next Generation of Skilled Trade: How to Attract the Talent?
We will showcase manufacturing companies in BC and job opportunities for young women and youth.
Jordan Perrault, Director of Strategic Initiatives, Construction Foundation of BC
Jordan Perrault is the Director of Strategic Initiatives at CFBC. He has been part of the organizations research and outreach initiatives to build the next generation of skilled workers since 2016. Jordan brings a mix of experiences working in industry and community services – particularly youth programming and workforce development. He completed a research degree in International Development Studies in Sweden before returning to Canada to be a carpenter’s helper and ultimately transitioning to the not-for-profit sector. Joining the CFBC team with the flagship Skills Ready program, Jordan has supported partnership development and program design with several of CFBC’s youth, Indigenous, and apprenticeship initiatives.
Lisa Block, People & Culture Business Partner, Metrie
Lisa is presently the People & Culture Business Partner for the Manufacturing division of Metrie; North America’s largest manufacturer and distributor of interior millwork with 32 manufacturing and distribution facilities across the US and Canada. Through the provision of strategic leadership and guidance to Metrie’s management, she drives the development of high performing, inclusive, and motivated industry professionals. Lisa has worked in the manufacturing and building materials industry for over 15 years and understands the experiences of women in this field. She is a passionate supporter and advocate of the advancement of women in manufacturing. She lives in Delta, BC, with her husband and two young children, age 4 and 6.
Bob Edl, General Manager – Manufacturing Services, ArcelorMittal Dofasco
Bob Edl is the Manufacturing Services General Manager for ArcelorMittal Dofasco, Hamilton’s largest private sector employer with nearly 5,000 employees that plays a key role in North America’s advanced manufacturing supply chain that ships 4.5 million net tons of high-quality flat carbon steel annually.
Bob’s role has a large focus on skilled trades within ArcelorMittal Dofasco. Bob is currently leading AMD’s World Class Apprenticeship program that involves working with provincial governments, stakeholders and educational institutions to advance the profile of skilled trades with emphasis in equality, diversity and inclusion. Bob is a strong supporter of the “Women in Skilled Trades Program” that helps to promote women and underrepresented groups to have access to a career in skilled trades.
Bob began his career as an Control Systems Technologist at ArcelorMittal Dofasco after completing Electrical Control System Engineering Technology from Mohawk College. Bob gained his technical and maintenance experience working through many large Manufacturing projects. Bob advanced to several positions in Maintenance Management that has afforded an excellent understanding of Manufacturing needs of skill trades and the benefits of leveraging diversity.
Chelsea Barron, Red Seal Machinist and Machinist Instructor, British Columbia Institute of Technology
Chelsea Barron is a Red Seal Machinist and a machinist instructor at British Columbia Institute of Technology. Chelsea is a Member of the Tsilhqot’in Nation, (Tletinqox Band) – British Columbia First Nation. As a machinist instructor at BCIT since 2020, Chelsea teaches both manual and CNC Machining. Chelsea is also regional representative with BCCWITT (BC Centre for Women in the Trades) mentor, and advocates for all women, indigenous peoples, and other minorities in the skilled trades.
Jelissa De Torres, Carpenter, Welder & Designer, Caisley Developments building
Jelissa is a carpentry apprentice, welder, and trades advocate. She currently works with Caisley Developments building and renovating high-end residential homes in Vancouver.
Outside of work and advocacy, she runs a business designing and building custom wood pieces and merchandise displays for local businesses and event decorators.
She serves as a regional representative for the BC Centre for Women in the Trades and is a board member for the non-profit’s Build a Dream and The BC Tradeswomen Society.
She has appeared in numerous publications and has been a speaker at various trades and STEM events across Canada. Her advocacy includes providing mentorship and guidance to women who are just starting their career in the trades or who are considering, yet hesitant, to pursue one.
Her efforts also seek to encourage and inspire young girls to consider alternative career paths and make pursuing a career in this industry more appealing and accessible to those who are underrepresented.
Kosi Stobbs CEO, Owl Group of Companies
Kosi began his career as a mechanical engineer after graduating from the University of Alberta, but his heart has always been in business and real estate. He made his first real estate investment purchase at the age of 22, and within two decades this has expanded to a prosperous network of real estate and companies, collectively the Owl Group of Companies. Kosi was chosen as an honoree of the 2020 Caldwell’s Canada Top 40 under 40 award. He currently sits on both a Peer Council and the BC Advisory Board for the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters (CME), as well as a member of Forbes Business Council. Along with being a contributor to Forbes and Entrepreneurship magazines, he has been featured in Bloomberg, Yahoo Finance, Canadian Real Estate Magazine and many other publications.