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Our Facilitators

We are proud of the facilitators of the Local Business Restart Project. They are all business owners who understand the complexity of operating a business in a time that requires clear strategic thinking, quick decision making, and creating pivoting opportunities daily. They are leaders in their field and are passionate about elevating other business owners.



Alyson Shane is a writer with 20 years' experience publishing content online. She's the President of Starling Social Inc., a digital marketing agency, and HeyAlfa, a startup focused on event marketing automation.


A passionate communicator, Alyson gives dozens of talks and workshops focused on marketing strategy each year, serves as the Communications Director of TEDxWinnipeg and offers her expertise to local nonprofits a volunteer with SPARK Winnipeg.


When not volunteering or working, you can typically find her gardening, riding her bike, or hammering away at her laptop over a pint of local 

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Cassandra Ratcliffe is currently building community as the Shopify Community Manager in Vancouver and the Sea to Sky region. From in-person workshops, large scale events, 1:1 meetings and now moving online to offer webinars, Cassandra loves building relationships and putting her marketing and e-commerce background to help local businesses grow.



After completing her education in Business Administration specializing in Marketing, Ashleigh began her marketing and communications career at the Brandon Chamber of Commerce. Since then, she has gained a tremendous amount of hands-on skills and knowledge specifically in traditional marketing, digital marketing, event planning and communications.


Ashleigh has worked in a variety of business sectors including hospitality, tourism, finance and manufacturing. In addition, she has worked with small start ups and sole proprietors promoting both products and services.

Ashleigh sits on the Membership Committee at the Brandon Chamber of Commerce and is currently continuing her education by working towards her Digital Marketing Certification through McMaster University.

On the personal side, she also owns Ashleigh Hamm Photography, lives in Brandon, Manitoba with her husband Myran, three-year-old son Kash, newborn baby Crew, and their chihuahua Stella.



I’m passionate about female entrepreneurship, my ultimate goal is to lift other women up so they can succeed in their business. There are likely plenty of other bosses out there who do what you, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for your brand to stand out and (in the words of Rihanna) “shine bright like a diamond.” Your products and services might be similar to the ones offered by the girl next door, but there’s no one out there who has your flare, your determination, or your passion. It’s my job to help you shine the light beaming from your unique qualities towards the digital space. Trust me, there are people out there waiting to be blinded by it!


Ever since I was a kid I knew I wanted to build my own business from the ground up. The type of business I wanted to run changed numerous times from a babysitting business, to a bakery, to a photography studio. But running my own boutique marketing and PR agency is something I’ve dreamed of for a long time. Throughout my time in university and college, I became obsessed with social media marketing and the power it has to allow brands to grow an online community with people all over the world, so it made sense to turn that obsession into a super awesome business venture. Now one year old, I can say that launching Strategic Charm Boutique was one of the best decisions of my life, and I can’t wait to see what year two has in store.



Kimberley brings with her 16 years of combined coaching, consulting and training experience within specialties including workforce development, facilitation, vocational rehabilitation, career development and employment/retirement coaching, offering both in-person and virtual delivery. After working in the not-for-profit and private sectors, she launched Infinity Career & Development Consulting in 2018 (

Kimberley is a member of Career Professionals of Canada and is committed to continuous learning and engagement in professional development. Since graduating with a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Winnipeg, she has completed a Certificate in Adult Continuing Education, Certificate in Rehabilitation Case Management and a Career / Employment Coach Certificate. She offers one-to-one and small group coaching, workshops and retreats, and has customized training for educational institutions, associations, government programs, not-for-profits, and private companies. 

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Coralee finds herself in many streams of Culture Co. from creative and design, collaboration enthusiast, authentic content creation and social strategy to cultural branding and marketing.

After studying marketing and design for business she soon realized that the ethos of culture needed to be created first. Culture in its broadest sense is cultivated behaviours that are directly evolving and nuanced through design. The effects of design are profound as it generates behaviours that directly impact your business and your following.

Design-driven branding is her ultimate ambition, creating a brand that speaks your cultural values, to your team, your peers and your clientele. Coralee loves to bring who you are to your brand. Ultimately her diversified experience from magazine writing, building homes, weddings and travel, has given her the opportunities to understand that people love to tell their story and live their style.



As the driving force of The Story Source, Cate Friesen helps you discover and tell your essential stories, the ones that will move your work forward, and inspire others to act with you. She is a story practitioner, facilitator, trainer and keynote presenter who draws on over 25 years of experience as an award-winning CBC producer, documentary maker, entrepreneur, and performer. She also hosts and produces a podcast focused on women in business, called Here’s How It’s Done.



Laura is the owner of Nickels and Dimes Money Mentoring and creator of The Profitability Programme, where she transforms business owners into confident, knowledgable business people in days instead of years. 

Laura spent over 20 years in the construction industry, has over 20 years of accounting experience and is an award-winning financial planner, providing her with unique expertise to help business owners be their most profitable.

In 2021Laura will be bringing both her Profitable Bookkeeping and ProfitAbility Workshops online in the newly created ProfitMaker Academy, allowing small business owners to access the content in these popular workshops at any time, from anywhere. The workshops will be available in independent study and group formats. 

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I am the co-owner and founder of Bankert Marketing Inc. I have a strong focus on web development, which I started 15 years ago. I also spend a lot of time with graphic design, book publishing, and video editing.

My second passion is travelling, and I have started a travel channel called "Our Crazy RV," showcasing the various places where we go.

Our goal at Bankert Marketing is to help people. That is the whole reason I got into web design in the first place. There was a need, and I wanted to help. Today we assist hundreds of clients in meeting their online goals with a growing team of experts.

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Nicki has spent the last 17 years engaging and cultivating the most effective, loyal teams impacting culture everywhere she goes. Her philosophy is deeply rooted in understanding your core values and strengths that impact all aspects of your business and your brand.

She is an agent of change and believes that stagnancy leads to the death of all creativity and growth as a business. 'So many entrepreneurs have focused so hard on what they want their culture & brand to be (we call those buzz words) but forget to acknowledge that they then need to live those values each and every day'

Nicki's passion is cutting through those buzz words and getting to the truth behind your true commitment to create a sustainable, profitable and aligned business. Her vision is to create a better world through activating elevated leadership in every business.