Young: Conference taps into ingenuity

Entrepreneurial conference encouraged new thinking, new ideas and advancement in innovation and creativity throughout our region.

I had my faith in a resurgence of the entrepreneurial spirit renewed in a very huge fashion at the inaugural Okanagan Entrepreneurship Conference held in Kelowna last week.

On Nov. 22 and 23 at the Ramada Hotel and Conference Centre, after six months of organization, the conference became a reality, designed to bring together a variety of people in some way aligned with the entrepreneurial spirit to encourage new thinking, new ideas and prompt advancement in innovation and creativity throughout our regional landscape.

We commenced the two-day event with an evening networking reception on Nov.22, with wine and appies provided so registrants and guests could meet, mingle and experience the 15 exhibit displays set up.

As well, the keynote address was given by Miles Laing, a partner with Mackay Chartered Accountants.

I was overwhelmed by the warmth and congenial presence everyone seemed to exhibit sprinkled with a willingness to share of themselves to others.

The following morning at 8:45 a.m., the schedule of conference speakers for the day began with a presentation by Barry Lapointe, president of Kelowna Flightcraft.

Lapointe talked about the joy and wonderment of his Canadian aviation through his own entrepreneurial story, one that still had us shaking our heads in disbelief by the end of the day.

Folks, the Kelowna Flightcraft story today— 1,000 employees over a 43-year aviation entrepreneurial highway and no sign of slowing down the jet engines.

Among other conference highlights, local lawyer Tony Edwards, who specializes in intellectual property law, gave the audience a powerful high speed presentation with wonderful anecdotes that kept all of us aghast that he could do so with no apparent notes in sight.

Jennifer Molgat, president of The View Winery,  left us with the message, that permeated loudly repeatedly as well from the speakers: “If you choose to explore the entrepreneurial world, prepare yourself effectively and then just do it.”

Renee Wasylyk, president of Troika Land Development, an awarded entrepreneurial creator from an entrepreneurial family, dazzled us with her directness and imagery of her traveled road to excellence.

From Jason Neale, formerly of Accelerate Okanagan and Vericorder, to our bankers from Scotiabank, RoyNatFinancial, BDC Okanagan and the Okanagan Angel Investment Network, to the Doak Shirreff law firm with Valeo Health Clinic, conference participants were offered professional insights into the various speakers’ own personal business journeys.

We were kept intently riveted to our seats, running swiftly to the display room between breaks in the program and a need for a coffee refill along the way.

Based on the response from this inaugural conference, the 2013 event will be even bigger come next November.

At the end of the day, the conference helped   remind ourselves that successful entrepreneurship depend on the ability of all of us to innovate, to create new knowledge and new technologies and to process and apply these innovations into new Okanagan entrepreneurial ventures that will stimulate our economy, create new jobs and change our world forever.

Thank you to the Okanagan for believing in our dream of stimulating the entrepreneurial spirit among us, to our conference organizing team; to Rae Stonehouse, our entrepreneur society chair who cracked the whip when needed to move

everything; our speakers, displayers and sponsors, who made it happen for all of us.

Stay tuned Okanagan, entrepreneurship is alive and well in our valley, with more to come very soon. Stay tuned.

Just Posted

Cirque du Soleil’s Corteo comes to captivate Kelowna

The show premiers Oct. 17 at Prospera Place

Kelowna mayoral candidates spar over support

Tom Dyas claims Colin Basran’s former campaign manger from seven years ago ‘abandoned’ him

WATCH:Tommy Chong has a special message for Kelowna

Chong was meant to attend a legalization day party that has now been rescheduled

Temporary detour on Boucherie Road detour changes

The detour will be Oct. 19 and 20 for paving

Police search for suspect vehicle after daytime break and enter

The vehicle is an older model, four-door sedan with winter tires on steel rims

Watch it again: Kelowna mayoral candidates square off

Missing the LIVE Kelowna mayoral debate watch now

BC Ferries begins taking debit in two-month pilot project

Company is giving customers option to use Interac on two-month trial on select vessels

Caregivers banned from smoking, growing cannabis around children-in-care: MCFD

Ministry has limited cannabis use for caregivers, stating it may “pose a risk to children and youth.”

Cheaper strains sell out within minutes on online BC Cannabis Store

Province says new strains will become available in the coming months

Only 40% of B.C. car dealerships have electric cars available: report

Researchers found buyers frustrated at the lack of options

VIDEO: Millionaire Lottery returns to give back and win big

Since 1996, Millionaire Lottery has raised $52 million for the VGH+UBC Hospital Foundation

Baby boomer buba shares heartfelt novel with Okanagan audience

Pauline Daniel will be at Vernon’s Bookland and library Oct. 20

Test case challenges a politician’s right to block people from Twitter account

3 people say Watson infringed their constitutional right to freedom of expression by blocking them

Most Read