Futurpreneur appoints two successful, young entrepreneurs to its board

July 23, 2020

Janelle Hinds and Thor Richardson join Canada’s only national, non-profit organization dedicated to supporting young entrepreneurs

Toronto, ON (July 23, 2020) – Futurpreneur Canada today announced the appointment of two new members to its board of directors, Janelle Hinds and Thor Richardson. Both successful entrepreneurs, they each bring key perspectives to the table, representing distinct voices of Futurpreneur’s target demographic: young, Canadian business owners aged 18-39.

“Janelle and Thor each bring unique experience that will help guide Futurpreneur as we strive to support an ever broader range of young entrepreneurs on their path to success,” said Karen Greve Young, CEO, Futurpreneur Canada. “Janelle, with her experience at Helping Hands, a platform that fosters youth engagement and helps students find meaningful volunteer opportunities , and Thor, through his work leading the global expansion of Casamigos. Both are passionate about empowering youth, entrepreneurship and social impact—all core to the work we do.”

“We look forward to working with Janelle and Thor on the Futurpreneur Board of Directors,” said David Aisenstat, Futurpreneur board chair. “Both of these business leaders bring critical skills and experience to the board, offering invaluable viewpoints as outstanding entrepreneurs representing our core age demographic.“

The Founder of Helping Hands, Hinds previously founded collaborative tech community HackItMac (now known as PhaseOne) and also organized deltaHacks, one of the first student-run hackathons in North America with a focus on enabling positive social change. She is the recipient of the Forbes 30 Under 30 Award for education, the United Way of Greater Toronto’s Youth Leadership Award, Samara’s Everyday Political Citizen Award and the Top Women in Technology and Innovation Award from Dutch organization InspiringFifty. She a fellow of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship and former CivicAction’s DiverseCity fellow. She holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree with majors in both biomedical and electrical engineering.

Richardson is the Director of International Markets for Casamigos Spirits Company, where he oversees the company’s operations in over 40 countries. Since the sale of Casamigos to British liquor conglomerate Diageo Plc in 2017, he has been leading the integration and expansion of the brand globally. He is on the board of Richardson International, Canada’s largest agricultural business, and a director of Canada’s Walk of Fame. He has always been passionate about youth and social impact and empowering the next generation of social enterprises. He holds a Business Administration (Honours) degree from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario and a Law degree (Honours) from the University of Cambridge.

As Hinds and Richardson join the board, Futurpreneur thanks the following outgoing directors for the valuable expertise and advice they offered throughout their years of dedicated service:

  • Nadir Hirji, partner in strategy and lead of PwC Canada’s Digital & Experience practice – Futurpreneur board member for 9 years
  • Mark Segal, executive vice president and CFO, Spin Master – Futurpreneur board member for 3.5 years

The Futurpreneur Board of Directors includes:

  • David Aisenstat (chair), CEO, Keg Restaurants Ltd.
  • David Sharpe (vice chair), CEO, Bridging Finance Inc.
  • Michel Bergeron (treasurer), chief strategy officer, BDC
  • Valerie Fox (secretary), chief innovation consultant, The Pivotal Point
  • John Risley, O.C. (founding chair), president, Clearwater Fine Foods Inc.
  • Devon Brooks, founder and CEO, Sphere
  • Paula Cruickshank, senior vice president, Ontario & Virtual Bank, BDC
  • Mike Dobbins, chief strategy and corporate development officer, RBC
  • Cindy Goertzen, co-founder and COO, Trivenity Corp.
  • Joanna Griffiths, CEO, Knix and Knixteen
  • Janelle Hinds, founder, Helping Hands
  • Derrick Hunter, president, Bluesky Equities Ltd.
  • Thor Richardson, director of international operations, Casamigos Spirits Company
  • Catherine Roche, chief marketing officer and head of social impact, Bank of Montreal
  • Elizabeth Roscoe, senior vice president and national practice leader, public affairs, Hill & Knowlton Strategies Canada

About Futurpreneur Canada

Futurpreneur Canada has been fuelling the entrepreneurial passions of enterprising young Canadians since 1996. We’re the only national, non-profit organization that provides financing, mentorship and resources to aspiring business owners aged 18-39. More than 13,000 young Canadian entrepreneurs, spanning every province and territory, have successfully launched their business with Futurpreneur’s support. Their main street businesses help drive Canada’s inclusive economic prosperity in communities from coast to coast to coast.

Futurpreneur is a founding member of the G20 Young Entrepreneurs’ Alliance, the Canadian member of Youth Business International, and the Canadian host of Global Entrepreneurship Week.

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