Guest Speakers

Thank you to all our guest speakers who took time out of their day on March 8, 2023 for our Women in Business Expo event on International Women’s Day to share their knowledge, skills and experience with our attendees. All of our speaker sessions had very positive feedback!

Samantha Gernhart
Clarity Marketing & Design


Hello! I am Samantha Gernhart, owner of Clarity Marketing & Design, a full-service and award-winning marketing and web design agency based in Brantford. 

I have helped businesses and non-profits of all sizes all over Canada with their marketing and web design needs since 2005. This coming summer will be my 18th year in business.

I’ll be sharing marketing do’s and don’ts for 2023. These days us entrepreneurs wear many hats and being your own marketing department is one of them. Website, social media, email marketing, seo… where do you start?! What should you focus on? When to ask for help?

Be sure to come with your burning marketing questions!

Topic: Marketing Your Business In 2023
Time: 10:00am – 10:45am

Did you miss the live guest speaking session? Watch the presentation recording!

Andrea Stanbridge
Andrea Stanbridge Real Estate


My all is having my family life with my beautiful kids and hubby while achieving success in my real estate career.

I love my family and being able to spend time with them is my number one priority. I believe there is always a next step in life to strive for! I am active in real estate and recently took my business to the next level by breaking off from a team-based real estate group and venturing out as a solo agent to create my own brand. 

I have many goals in real estate. Helping the community find their dream home or their next investment is a strong passion of mine and I look forward to growing within the industry. Making the decision to go into business for myself humbled me with new challenges and struggles. It also has shown me a whole new side of business and confidence that I love. It allows me to continue learning and growing in all new ways.

Having discovered this new world of modern women in business, this new passion sparked within and a desire to help women achieve their own goals in life was alive. If I can have it all, you can too.

For the Women In Business Expo on March 8th, 2023 I look forward to sharing my journey into my business while balancing life, family and career. I will also be going into detail on the current market as well we’ll talk about team-based real estate services vs. individual. I will share important steps to take in getting started on your own as an agent, and the tips and tricks I picked up along the way. My talk will be honest and truthful as I discuss the struggles and challenges I faced, and how I overcame them and did it with a busy family.

If a little voice in your head has been telling you to make a change, don’t ignore it. Embrace it, this new direction could be the guide to your purpose.

Topic: You Can Have It All – My Journey 
Time: 11:00am – 11:45am

Elaine Kapogines
Pitch Class


Hello, I’m Elaine!

I am a public relations strategist, media educator and the founder of Wiltshire Media PR. Join me at 12 pm in the Speaker Hall as I share with you how to prepare yourself for successful press coverage.

After a 15-year career as a journalist in print and digital media, I made the switch to public relations and content marketing where I now serve a diverse clientele with a heaping dose of humour, passion and authenticity. 

Creator and host of Pitch Class and PR for Publishing, where I teach entrepreneurs and independent authors how to create and execute their own PR strategies.

Getting coverage in the press has been proven to be one of the most effective ways to grow your business. However, for many entrepreneurs — especially those in an underrepresented segment of our society — the biggest struggle is that they don’t know where to start! Diving into a media strategy really does begin with how you think about yourself and your place in the media landscape. 

With this speaker session, I will show you how to boost your confidence and create a meaningful foundation for an effective media relations strategy. Join me!

Topic: The Media Mindset: Preparing Yourself for Successful Press Coverage
Time: 12:00pm – 12:45pm

Jessica Parr
Springen Equestrian


Having professionally coached competitive equestrians for over a decade, I’ve come to realize that success in the saddle is directly correlated to what we believe is possible. 

From landing myself in the hospital to rebuilding a six-figure business, one could argue burnout and I have quite a personal relationship. From this experience, it has become my mission to empower women with the confidence to accomplish what they truly desire in life.

The Jessica Parr Podcast, now with 50,000 downloads on Spotify,  allows me to share the stories of many accomplished CEOs and shed light on the challenges specific to women in business. This podcast has something for everyone.

I’m looking forward to sharing the tools I’ve compiled in my time in business and in life, for the woman who wants to reach her highest potential without sacrificing everything on the journey to get there. We will have a truthful conversation about burnout and ways to overcome it. 

Topic: Burnout in Business
Time: 1:00pm – 1:45pm

Sharlene Mohlman
World Financial Group


I’ve been there. And I can tell you how I eliminated $55k worth of debt in as little as five years. It is possible.

My successful path in business has brought me to a beautiful place where I help educate and empower women to create the financial life they deserve.

Working closely with professional women, I educate and assist clients in eliminating debt and building successful financial portfolios, so they can achieve comfort in their lifestyle while creating generational wealth.

In our speaker session, we will discuss relevant and manageable plans to demolish debt, how to effectively use savings/investment accounts, we’ll discuss compound interest and how to utilize your Financial Independence Number. 

If you’re thinking about getting into business for yourself, start here, on the right foot, with a financial plan that is curated for you, by a trusted professional. 

Looking forward to connecting with you.

Topic: When You’re Down to Your Last Dollar
Time: 2:00pm – 2:45pm

Jodi Laking
Work Smart Canada


Jodi Laking, CEO and owner of Work Smart Canada, has worked with and supported over 5,000 start-ups and small business owners over the last 15 years through her own business ventures, as well as mentoring connections and roles through municipal small business centres.

Her focus is on providing consulting, coaching and specialized courses for entrepreneurs and small business owners who are in the start-up or post-startup (18 months to 3 years) phase with the goal to work with each person to find the right fit and balance between the professional growth that drives them to lead in their industry, the financial freedom they are seeking and the needs they want to fulfill in their personal life.

During this session, we will discuss 5 key trends that showcase why 2023 is the perfect year to start a new business or relaunch an existing business. Plus, we’ll break down how to leverage resources to maximize your time, capacity, cash flow and marketing to have a lasting impact on your business and your lifestyle.

Topic: Why 2023 is the perfect year to start or re-launch your business
Time: 3:00pm – 3: 45pm