Inclusive Business Forum 2019: Engaging and supporting a diverse workforce

Friday, July 5, 2019
7:30 AM
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Schedule:Registration & Buffet Breakfast:  7:30 - 8:00 a.m.
Program: 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

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It is widely accepted that workplaces that foster a culture for inclusion perform better. However, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to inclusiveness.

Inclusive Business Forum 2019 will explore how employers can effectively engage and support a diverse workforce and will highlight both large and small businesses in our region that are proactively creating a workplace culture of inclusion.

The forum will explore key themes such as:

  • Meaningfully engaging and training employees with developmental disabilities
  • Securing buy-in from the top management for diversity and inclusion strategies
  • Implications of changing legislation on diversity and inclusion

Event Co-Chairs

Craig Richmond Kirsten Sutton

Craig Richmond, President and CEO, Vancouver Airport Authority
Kirsten Sutton, Vice-President and Managing Director, SAP Labs Canada


Hon. Shane Simpson

The Honourable Shane Simpson
Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction
Province of British Columbia


Mary Anne Davidson

Mary Anne Davidson
2018-19 Vice-Chair, Greater Vancouver Board of Trade



Inclusive Leadership: Leading the charge on diversity and inclusivity

Buy in from the senior level is important in ensuring the success of a diversity and inclusion strategy. In this session industry leaders will discuss what it takes to achieve leadership support for diversity and inclusion strategies, what these strategies entail, and how to overcome setbacks and roadblocks.

 Jenny Blome  Kirsten Sutton Kim Toews Ricardo Wagner Mark Patterson

Jenny Blome, Manager, Accessibility Services, Rick Hansen Foundation
Kirsten Sutton, Vice-President and Managing Director, SAP Labs Canada
Kim Toews, Executive Vice President and Head of Human Resources, HSBC Bank Canada
Ricardo Wagner, Microsoft Accessibility Lead, Microsoft
Moderator: Mark Patterson, Executive Director, Magnet, Ryerson University


Inclusive training and skills development for meaningful engagement

Inclusion goes beyond inclusive employment practices. It involves a commitment to providing skills training and career advancement opportunities for those who face limited employment prospects. This session will explore how employers can provide the right training, tailored to young adults living with developmental disabilities, to grow our talent while preparing them for meaningful careers.

Dan BreggSean EastonRobin SymeSeema TripathiHayley Woodin

Dan Bregg, President, Buy Low Foods
Sean Easton, Co-Executive Director, Zero Ceiling Society of Canada
Robin Syme, Executive Director, CanAssist at the University of Victoria
Seema Tripathi, Associate Director of Community Services, UNITI
Moderator: Hayley Woodin, Multimedia reporter, Business in Vancouver


Creating a Workplace Culture of Inclusion: How small businesses are making it work

While the benefits of diversity at the workplace are well established, tapping into these advantages in practice is not always an easy undertaking, especially for small businesses that face  resource constraints. This session will explore how small and medium businesses are making it work and will uncover the tools and strategies they use to effectively engage and support a diverse workforce to foster a workplace culture of inclusion.

Lisa BeecroftTess HuntlyAsh MacLeodSarah WhitePeter Raptis

Lisa Beecroft, Owner, Gabi and Jules
Tess Huntly, Director of Adult Services, Kinsight
Ash MacLeod, Managing Director, Save on Meats
Sarah White, Co-Founder, Fairware
Moderator: Peter Raptis, Vancouver Restaurant Entrepreneur & Board Member, Pacific Autism Family Network

Presented in Partnership with:

Supporting Sponsor:

Community Sponsors:

Preferred Media Partner:

Marketing Partner: