What makes a Leader? A Leader not only takes on the risks of entrepreneurship, but does so with a mindset of giving back through job creation, creating an outstanding workplace, contributing to the city’s economy, and enriching the community. Business in Edmonton sponsors and highlights the Leaders event; however, the winners are selected by an independent panel that assesses each nominee across a broad spectrum of criteria. This year’s judges are Dustin Sundby, MNP, managing partner-Edmonton region; Dennis Sheppard, NAIT, dean, JR Shaw School of Business; and Shawn Mevel, ATB Financial, director, sales, business and agriculture.
“A great business leader is one who, first and foremost, is focused on people. Gathering a team of diverse perspectives and skillsets around a shared vision is a key to success for any organization,” says Sheppard. “A great leader is also one who spends more time looking to the future for opportunities than to the past for what could have been.”
Sheppard points out the attributes of Edmonton as a great place for entrepreneurs saying, “The Edmonton community is one of collaboration and support. Entrepreneurs can, with confidence, know they are surrounded by like-minded folks who are all too happy to provide mentorship and contribute to their success. Edmonton is well positioned as a leading hub of entrepreneurial activity with the incredible support systems as well as the collective knowledge, experience, passion and sense of pride that exists here.”
To the Leaders he says, “As a relative newcomer to Edmonton, I am amazed by the breadth and depth of business that flourishes here. This is a testament to the leadership and passion of the many great leaders who commit their time and energy to their companies and to their people. Congratulations to all the Leaders and thank you for contributing to the region and beyond.”
For Sundby, a leader is an individual who is balanced, curious, and has a tenacious can-do attitude. “Albertans are adaptive and accepting to change, but Edmontonians are even more so, which is a must for entrepreneurs to have success,” he says.
To the Leaders, Sundby encourages, “Keep pushing for innovation as well as taking the time to mentor and empower the next generation. Your efforts and contributions are very much appreciated by all of us in Edmonton.”
“A great leader brings empathy, understanding, and an ability to synthesize and communicate a vision for their business,” says Mevel. “As is often heard, ‘Edmonton is a big small town.’ Edmonton is full of people with ideas and drive, but it is also a city of mentors. Successful people in Edmonton are willing to give their time and experience to others to give a hand up.”
Mevel is grateful for the level of leadership he’s observed in the nominees, noting, “Thank you for being the leader you are; for putting yourself out there to support your business and your teams.”
Congratulations to the nominees and Leaders for their many contributions to Edmonton’s business and community landscape.
Click here to view this year’s recipients.