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bilateral mentorship

"shared learning is impactful learning"

                                    the lolas' collective

Everyone can agree that having a mentor can make a world of difference in individual development and growth. Taking a community-based approach, our bilateral mentorship program is the 1st and only program that takes a guided, reciprocal approach where both the mentor and mentee have wisdom to share. 

 

Each cohort is limited in size.

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how does bilateral mentorship work?

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Participants attend 4 workshops with topics focused on building trust, understanding stylistic differences, curiosity mindset, and business skills.  We actively screen both mentor and mentee to ensure shared values and a commitment to learning and support.  

spring session gallery

meet the mentors

meet the mentors

rockstars, superstars, bff's, confidants, salt of the earth

April Dawn
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Apryl Dawn

RE/MAX Real Estate

Apryl Dawn had a humble start to her jewelry line with what she intended to be a simple hobby, creating pieces for herself to fulfill her own desire to wear jewelry that was edgy, fashion-forward, and also a meaningful representation of her spirituality.

 

Her eye-catching and unique designs were included in The Emmy’s 2015 Style Lounge, where numerous celebs were featured wearing her pieces in OK! Magazine.

 

Apryl Dawn caught our attention when she posted an unforeseen situation where a national retailer cancelled their order of 1,500 bracelets. Most of us would have been devastated, angry and frustrated but not Apryl Dawn. Instead, she went to her audience and sold every bracelet at a very accessible price and donated the proceeds to a charity. Her spirit of authenticity and resilience is unmatched and this is why we wanted Apryl Dawn to join the bilateral mentorship program.

 

But wait . . . her story doesn’t just end there . . . in 2022 Apryl Dawn switched gears and leaped into Real Estate, quickly becoming successful and helping people find their homes, not just a house. And she is just getting started . . . this Legacy Lululemon Ambassador is an active advocate for Gems for Gems: an Alberta operated charity with the intention of eradicating domestic violence by educating and empowering survivors.

Carly K.

Carly Kubinec

Crème Cream Puffs

Carly charged into the food scene in Calgary in 2019 with her amazing Crème brand specializing in modern cream puffs, mile-high cakes, and the most delicious cookies! Her journey into the food scene was circuitous having graduated with a BBA in leadership and management but soon learned that her heart and passion was in food! An adventurous entrepreneur she moved to Hong Kong to teach English, but became enthralled with the thriving food culture. From there she made her way to London, UK to attend Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute. Carly went on to work in a Michelin star restaurant where she honed her skills in making the daily cream puffs for the restaurant’s dessert menu.

She truly lives the entrepreneur journey . . . building her business through trials and tribulation. Always committed to her following, she started a blog sharing her tips and things she discovered. Always up to the challenge, Carly sees opportunities in almost everything! It is this “can do” attitude and focus that led to partnerships with local businesses who feature her Crème offerings to customers. From Monogram Coffee and Lululemon to Bro’kin Yolk and Aritzia’s A-Ok cafe, Carly has grown her business both online and in person through pop-ups, markets and an amazing clientele who just keeps spreading the word. Carly is personable, exudes positivity and is well respected in the culinary scene!

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Chantale D
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Chantale Desilets

CD Branding Co.

Chantale Desilets’ energy is palpable from a mile away. Her enthusiasm for life, all things creative, fashion and marketing leaps off the page long before you meet her in person! Chantale recently founded her own agency CD Branding Co. and has not looked back. She loves meeting people, curious about what motivates them and if you happen to be her client . . . you are in good hands. She thrives on agility and seizes opportunities in this ever-evolving field. Her background in business equips her with a unique blend of analytical thinking and creative vision, ensuring a well-rounded approach to each project.

 

When you meet Chantale, you will never forget her. In fact, we suspect that she leaves an indelible impression with everyone!  Oh and did we mention that she speaks fluent French having moved from Montreal to Calgary and is a spectacular mom to her adorable daughter!

Jamie AV

Jamie Anne Vaughan

Westwood Strategies

Jamie Anne Vaughan stormed into the Public Relations world with a mission to shake things up. The passionate founder of Westwood Strategies, declared with conviction “Clients deserved killer communications strategies that not only made a real difference in their bottom line but tell a stronger and enticing story”.  When we got stuck on writing the lolas’ collective boiler plate, we reached out to Jamie Anne and she provided excellent council.

In just 3 short years, Westwood Strategies has established themselves as a powerhouse PR Agency focused on growth and innovative approaches. But let’s not stop there, Jamie Anne is a sessional instructor at Mount Royal University and the University of Calgary Public Relations Program. Her famous line . . . “In PR, we may not have a crystal ball, but we sure know how to make the future look bright!"

 

Mentorship is in her soul and she has been involved with Big Brothers, Big Sisters Mentorship Programs and now with the lolas’ collective bilateral mentorship program.
 

With 2 jobs and volunteer work, Jamie Anne still finds time to burrow into a good book with a goal to 100 books in 2024! We say, Jamie Anne is someone we all should know!

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Joanna F.
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Joanna Faddoul

Rayn Design & Marketing Studio

Joanna Faddoul is the creative genius behind Rayn Design and Marketing Studio.

 

Joanna studied finance and like many people, initially started her career in corporate finance but yearned to fill her entrepreneurial soul. In 2021, Joanna took a big leap to open up her own creative agency. She now works with other entrepreneurs, helping them fulfill their dreams as well through website development, marketing materials and social media management. Her portfolio of work elevates every brand she has touched and she is able to simultaneously insert bold designs and colours at the right time and place! 
 

Soft spoken, Joanna is a powerhouse of strategic thinking, and she inspires “others to create a fulfilling career and live their life on their own terms”.

We were so impressed that we’ve hired Joanna to build the lolas’ collective website and we are grateful for her insights and guidance!

 

In her spare time Joanna believes that exercise should be a daily habit and not just a hobby!

K. Macdonld

Kaleigh Macdonald

Shell

Meet Kaleigh, she is a multi-dimensional and passionate leader, creator, and connector who finds her greatest purpose in empowering herself and others into authentic and whole self-expression.

 

She is a project manager, engineer, and Performance and Transformation Lead at one of the largest energy companies in the world, who also loves to write poetry, meditate, drink tea, do yoga, travel, cook and is a huge fiction fan!

 

Don’t let the big title fool you, Kaleigh is as personable as they come! She is brimming with ideas, thoughtful questions, wisdom and intuition, and a strong focus on the why. She has been mentored and mentoring for many years. She believes in making deep connections with everyone she meets. Her secret sauce . . . seamlessly put ideas and processes into inspired action through manageable and aligned bite size steps.

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Lynn Rennie
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Lynne Rennie

Cocoa Community Confections & Alberta University of the Arts

Meeting Lynne is like getting sunshine injected into your veins! Her energy, inquisitive nature and desire to make connection is her brand vibe. A graphic designer and design instructor at the Alberta University of the Arts, Lynne fosters innovation by nurturing the next generation of creative talent.

 

Lynne has traveled the world but her favorite was living in New York City as a designer for Harper Collins Publishers. We suspect that her energy matched the vibrancy of NYC.

Lynne is a people magnet – you are instantly drawn and want to engage immediately! With degrees in English literature, Fine Art, and Communications Design, Lynne is a lifelong learner, always interested in how things work and asking our favorite question . . . why.

 

She is the Design Director for several Calgary-based manufacturing companies including a world famous chocolatier! We wonder if she gets to bring her work home with her . . .

Meg Baxter

Meaghan Baxter 

Meaghan Baxter Photography 

Small town prairie girl who loves the outdoors, travel and telling stories through every medium. Meaghan Baxter is one fiery redhead! Not only is she a tattoo aficionado, writer, editor, communications expert, photographer, mother, wife . . . entrepreneur and do we dare say . . . a reality TV junkie!! The cheesier, the better! Amen!

 

Meaghan’s work has also been published in the Globe & Mail, Avenue Magazine, Beatroute, Confetti, Daily Hive, Exclaim!, the Edmonton Journal, Fast Forward Weekly and numerous other magazines.

 

In 2022, Meaghan took a leap of faith and launched her photography business full time. Her website is filled with client testimonials and accolades. The common thread . . . her creative eye and ability to bring out the essence of the individual through her photos. Everyone wants to be seen.

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Meghan V.
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Meghan Vallance-Morin

Mark's

Ever wonder who are the masterminds behind an instore experience? How do they tap into your impulse gene, instantly changing your “wants” into “needs”? Let me introduce you to Meghan Vallance-Morin. Associate Vice President with Mark’s, responsible for the customer and instore experience in 385 locations across Canada. Meghan drives the strategy behind the “vibe”, ensuring consistency in how the brand is executed at numerous touch points including physical space, digital and communication channels. She has done it all from visual merchandising and displays, in-store marketing, internal communication and direct customer service. But wait there’s more . . . Meghan developed and launched an innovative digital ecommerce prototype: Scrub Club, tapping into the evolving health care market. The website invites healthcare workers to participate in a subscription model and their scrubs are delivered to their door!
 

Her creativity transcends her corporate persona, as Meghan also sits on the Board for Decidedly Jazz Danceworks.
 

While her background is corporate, her heart lies in women led businesses and she is passionate about start up and innovation. She recently completed Financial Feminist Investing Lab through The51 and Movement51. Despite her background in fashion retailing, Meghan and her 13 year old daughter are fans of the relove market, spending weekends exploring vintage and thrift stores all over the city, discovering forgotten treasures and giving them a 2nd life.

Sarah H.

Sarah Hutchings

Subtle Beauty

Sarah Hutchings is the force of nature behind Subtle Beauty Inc., a specialized medical aesthetics and injectables practice. When you meet Sarah, you are immediately drawn to her authenticity, she listens with her whole being, interested in getting to know the person in front of her. It is no wonder that she has been “white hatted” by the City of Calgary, recognized for her achievements in hospitality.

 

Her background is impressive, she is a nurse practitioner, working in acute care, family medicine and with vulnerable populations. It wasn’t long before Sarah found her passion for bringing out the “beauty” in every individual and she thus began her entrepreneurial journey.

 

Sarah lives the saying, “less is more” and her mission is to help others see their beauty from within by helping them maintain their natural beauty.
 

A runner, who competes at an elite level, her favorite food groups are wine and cheese and she even spent 5 years in prison . . . you will have to ask her about this juicy tidbit! Sarah loves to meet new people and we suspect that she is the “life and soul” of any party.

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Sydney J.
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Sydney Johnson 

J5 Design

You only have to meet Sydney for 10 minutes and you know she is a big picture thinker.
 

In her role at Head of Design at J5, an experience and service design consultancy, she is a role model for her team and others. Service design is about making change in the world through understanding the people in it and Sydney’s career is specialized in helping organizations to be more human centred, in part through making work something that is designed to be more equitable for all.
 

Before joining J5, Sydney ran her own company through which she also worked as a service design consultant. Prior to that she was involved in healthcare innovation.

 

Sydney holds a BA in Graphic Design from Central St Martins in London, UK and an MA in Digital Experience Design from Hyper Island. A world traveler, chocolate chip cookie connoisseur, dog mom, and soon to be wedded in Las Vegas in May by Lady Elvis . . . how much more interesting can one be?

Taylor N.

Taylor Nickolson

Elevated Eleven Studios

It’s hard not to notice Taylor, the visionary behind Elevated Eleven Studios, a successful custom designed jewelry boutique that turned this competitive business on its head. With zero experience in international buying or jewelry design, she has set up sourcing partners in India, Dubai and the UK. Her business prowess has accelerated her expertise in importing and exporting.

 

In just one short year, Taylor has become a maven in this industry, bringing to life

one-of-a-kind designs that celebrate and tell stories of life and love. This modest trailblazer’s face lights up when she recounts the stories of her customer’s love stories. You know that she designs with incredible passion, reflecting the depth of their love. With clients from every corner of the world, Taylor has established Elevated Eleven Studios as a game changer on her terms . . . fusing creativity with craftsmanship.

 

Taylor’s personal mantra “Embrace your intuition, chase opportunities, and show up, even if it means doing it scared”. . . Oh and she did all this while giving birth and raising the most darling little boy named Ari, who has his own claim to fame with a reel that went viral when he was only 8 months old . . . but that story we will leave for another time.

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Courtney Rogers

Everyday Skin Studio

After years of floating around in different industries from retail, serving, fitness, marketing at a start-up, lifestyle blogging, Courtney found herself questioning if she was just one of those people who didn’t have that “thing” they were meant to do. Fast forward to 2019, she took a deep breath, went to school to become a medical aesthetician, and there it was . . . that thing. Her career in aesthetics took off, she set the standard for all things skin. Courtney was priceless, sharing her skills & expertise with everyone & helping clients feel like a million bucks! Inspirational people always inspire others . . . we always say good people find a way to work together and it is so true. We both knew Courtney from two different circles. In 2024, Courtney leaped again . . . and launched Everyday Skin Studio. Her mission was simple, help as many people as possible on their journey to their best skin ever, creating a space where people can find balance and harmony. We love Courtney’s modest confident approach. You only have to meet her once to know that she is a super smart and there is always something brewing in the background. The one thing we really love is her willingness to be vulnerable . . . her honesty about how she is feeling along the way. Courtney brings the perspective that the journey to success is not always linear and it’s never too late in life to pursue your passion.

Lindsay Nawash

Lost in Layers

It is not often you meet an entrepreneur like Lindsay Nawash and her inclusive brand, Lost in Layers.

 

Immediately after meeting her, you know that she has lived entrepreneurship in its’ fullest form. She truly embodies the concept of “grinding everyday”.

Her energy and vision are unwavering. When she talks about inclusivity, her commitment to delivering premium quality clothing for every body type comes through in spades . . . not in a stand on a soapbox way, but from conviction. She chose to manufacture ethically in Canada, an incredible feat in itself. It all started with a shawl . . . it then grew into dresses, shirts and in the blink of an eye, she had an entire clothing line. The details, the fabric - all with one intention in mind . . . women of any age, stage, shape, and style feel comfortable and beautiful. She is an entrepreneur everyone should know.

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Christina Bullock

Hot Rod Communications

Christina Bullock is the founder and CEO of Hot Rod Communications and she is one of the most multi-faceted leaders we have ever met. Her illustrious career started with a marketing agency, but she found herself drawn to the world of hockey, where she spent 10 years leading Public Relations for all levels of hockey, including working with Team Canada on the international stage. From there, she joined Canadian Tire Corporation overseeing the internal and external communications for both Mark’s and Sport Chek across Canada. Today, she is inspired by her donkey Hot Rod, her epic team of 3 talented ladies and working with small to mid-sized businesses to reach their goals . . . without breaking the bank. How appropriate that she would name her company after her donkey . . . Hot Rod is defined as giving a vehicle extra power and speed – which is exactly what marketing and PR does for a company! In a nutshell, we think Christina could seamlessly enjoy having tea with the queen and beers with the boys!

Christy Caswell

Urban Planner

Christy is the type of urban planner that every city dreams of. She sees the beauty in our parks, river valleys and vibrant inner-city neighbourhoods! Not only does she appreciate the world around her, she is also a serious music enthusiast. You will often find her at the Folk Festival or seeking out an up-and-coming artist. After a fulfilling career with the City of Calgary as an urban planner and a strategist, Christy has taken the brave leap to step out of corporate life and create space for herself to explore her passions and what excites her. As a leader, she is anchored on building healthy team cultures, psychological safety and leading with empathy all while having fun along the way.

 

Christy brings a genuine and authentic whole self to every relationship and she is excited to meet all the wonderful women involved with the lolas’ collective.

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Amber Pavey

Present Possibilities

Amber is the founder of Present Possibilities offering mindfulness, yoga & reiki training to kids, teens, and adults. Her mission is to help individuals thrive, and not just survive in our ultra-busy, fast paced world. When you meet Amber, you are immediately drawn to her calm, attentive approach. It is grounding.

Trained as a teacher, Amber champions mindfulness and she is the educational consultant and author for Mindful Living, a global lifestyle brand of puzzles and games for children and adults. Her secret sauce we suspect is her curiosity mindset, always thinking about possibilities and how we can deepen our experience.

Morgan Kelly

Morgan Kelly Interiors

Morgan Kelly is a NYC transplant currently living and working in Calgary, AB. After graduating from Parsons School of Design in New York City, Morgan joined the design team at Victoria Hagan Interiors, a top NYC design firm specializing in high-end residential interiors and frequently featured in the pages of Architectural Digest and Elle Decor. Morgan’s background includes high-end residential interior design work, custom furniture and textile design as well as product design and development.

 

After a decade refining her skills in NYC, Morgan relocated to Calgary, her husband's hometown. Morgan has established her own design firm, focusing on creating bespoke interiors for residential design clients. Morgan is also a wife and mother to two young daughters. Morgan's other loves include strong coffee, a good workout, Bauhaus architecture and an early 80's post-punk playlist.

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Emily Bruce

KORITE

Emily Bruce, fashionista, style maven, leader, weight lifter, mom and a woman on a mission! Emily has had a career working with stellar brands like Club Monaco, Sporting Life, Holt Renfrew and now KORITE International.  From product development to buying, sales, leadership and now gemstones and jewelry. A senior executive, Emily exudes energy and warmth . . . always focused on building a high-performance team. Her soul is fueled by positivity, and she can’t wait to add new friends and team mates into her circles.  As a young child, Emily loved making jewelry and collecting gemstones . . . a way to express her personal and unique style.  Despite her incredibly busy schedule, Emily makes time to sit on the Board at Dress for Success and supports various other Calgary based organizations. 

Amanda Cottrell

Art Mindfulness & Creativity

Believe! Create! Inspire! Amanda is a woman who is passionate about education, personal development and living a life of creativity and confidence. She has earned a B.A in Political Science, B.Ed in Elementary Education, M.Ed Specializing in Creativity and Technology. Her alternative studies include Reiki Master Certification, and Children's Yoga Instructor Certification. She is also an artist, author, and illustrator with over nine books published. She runs mindfulness and art workshops and works with people to get their books written!

 

With over 15 years experience as an educator, her mission is to empower people through their own creative gifts. Amanda guides you with creative exercises, and utilizes her experience in mindfulness to empower connection, lifelong learning and peace.

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Kimberley McAdams

Deloitte

Have you ever met someone who can see your soul . . . and you immediately feel safe, respected and your heart expands? That’s the magic of Kimberley. She is a much sought after ICF Certified leadership coach, facilitator and culture guru. Kimberley is the co-founder of The Ally Co, a leadership development company. In her current role, she leads Greenhouse Initiatives for Deloitte co-creating innovative solutions to big challenges. Kimberley is a BIG thinker, she listens with every cell in her body. In addition to her own company, Kimberley has worked all over the US with purpose driven businesses and locally with Level 52, Habanero Consulting and Momentum.

 

Kimberley loves the outdoors, skiing, hiking . . . any form of exercise, especially with her Cocker Spaniel Mazy! She loves to travel, cook and meet new people!

Anna Ho

Article Apparels

Meet Anna, the proud owner of Article Apparels, a thriving women’s consignment store nestled in the heart of Calgary. With a background in residential and commercial architecture, Anna brings a unique blend of creativity and an eye for design to her entrepreneurial pursuits. Anna was inspired to start her business to offer a curated selection of pre-loved clothing while reducing environmental impact and also supporting other women in business. Article Apparels is a boutique by day, and a workshop networking hub by night that allows for meaningful networking and new friendships.

 

Beyond the bustling storefront, Anna finds solace in exploring Calgary’s hidden gems and surrounding natural landscapes. Whether it’s hiking through scenic trails or simply enjoying a quiet moment by the river, Anna treasures the opportunity to recharge amidst the bustle and busyness of life. Accompanying her on these adventures is Bao, her loyal rescue dog and beloved shop companion, adding an extra dose of joy to every outing. Bao is a customer relations specialist, greeting every customer as they enter the store.

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Heather Jansen

Change is Good

Heather Jansen is a dedicated social entrepreneur with a profound commitment to community development and empowerment. With a career rooted in social impact, Heather’s social enterprise journey began in Yangon, Myanmar, and has spanned several projects focusing on the rehabilitation and reintegration of individuals facing barriers to employment. With a keen focus on commercial operations, marketing, and employment, Heather has effectively demonstrated the power of entrepreneurship in addressing social challenges. During the COVID-19 pandemic, while others found themselves binging on Netflix, Heather brought forth an idea that had been percolating in the back of her mind. The concept was a social enterprise second-hand store that would serve as a well-curated co-retail space with other socially minded entrepreneurs/brands. Change is Good, owned and operated by The Calgary Dream Centre, opened its doors in the vibrant community of Inglewood in December of 2021. The store was quickly embraced by the community, and its marketing and social channels communicated their offerings in a dramatically different way, resonating deeply with their audience. Through Change is Good, Heather has effectively bridged the broader community with the social cause of The Calgary Dream Centre, leveraging business as a force for good.

apply to become a mentor

interested in learning more about yourself and others?  bilateral mentorship will expose you to diverse perspectives within a shared learning environment.

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