Our Speakers – November 16th, 2017

Jen Nicholson

Jen Nicholson is a mom of four teenage girls, a Chartered Professional Accountant and a partner with Executive Finance.  Jen has climbed up – and then down the corporate ladder and now helps finance professionals become executives and move from the cubicle to the corner office.  She has over 20 years of experience – some good and some bad in public and private energy, mining and shipping companies as well as academia.   She is now building a successful business and life on her terms.

Hon. Joanne Bernard E.C.N.S

Joanne Bernard has been building communities for over 15 years in Nova Scotia.  She is currently CEO and President of  Easter Seals Nova Scotia and sits on the Board of Directors of MSVU Alumni Association.

In 2002, Joanne established the Marguerite Centre, the only residential facility for women recovering from addictions and abuse in Nova Scotia. Her leadership in the women’s community continued in 2005 as she was tasked to lead Alice Housing, which offers second stage housing for women and children leaving abusive relationships. In 2008, she developed Healing the Bruises, the only interventionist therapy program in Atlantic Canada for child witnesses of domestic violence.

Ms. Bernard has been recognized for her work in the non-profit field, having led Alice Housing to multiple Donner Awards. Professionally she has received the Peter F. Drucker award for Non Profit Management in Canada in 2011, the Holly House Award for her work on the issue of homelessness and in 2015 the Inspire Award for her Public Service

Elected to the Nova Scotia House of Assembly in 2013, Ms. Bernard was immediately appointed to the Executive Council of Nova Scotia where she served as Minister of Community Services, Housing Nova Scotia, Disabled Persons Commission and Advisory Council for the Status of Women.

Ms. Bernard holds of Bachelor of Arts (Political Science with Distinction) from Mount Saint Vincent University, Masters of Arts (Political Science) from Acadia University and a Certificate of Leadership from Saint Mary’s University.

Joanne is married to Annette, mother to grown son Taylor and proud owner of 5 rescued cats.

Lori Anne Jones

Lori Anne is the founder and CEO of SHIFT Strategies – a Change Consulting firm where she and her team help organizations and individuals activate their transformation potential and evolved to their next level of brilliance.  LoriAnne is a dynamic entrepreneur with a over 20 years of experience supporting transformation and creating positive space for personal and organizational evolution.  She believes that everyone has, at a core level, the courage and capacity to overcome and emerge from challenges and adversity stronger and more resilient. Lori Anne is also an artist with a prismatic world view able to see the possibility of many views, perspectives and possibilities which serves her well in her business as she works with individuals and organizations to realize their full potential and maximize their impact. She has a passion for and a commitment to assisting young women realize their potential and has created an empowerment program called SPARK where she creates the opportunity for young women to harness their gifts and activate their brilliance.

C.C. Dorrie

C.C. Dorrie spent the first eight years of her life in Hnusta, Slovakia living in a world of fear and violence, until she was abducted by her father. Eventually settling in Canada, she did not see her mother again until she was a teenager. After their emotional reunion, she spent many years running from her past in search of something just out of reach.  Along the way, she met both angels and devils in disguise, before finding the courage to open her Pandora Box.

She has enjoyed living peacefully on the coast of Nova Scotia with her husband and two children since 2005. Every day, she wakes up and looks out at the Atlantic Ocean and its glittering blue waters—much like the waters of the majestic Mediterranean, into which she poured her heart all those years ago.  This is her first book.

Become a Speaker

We’re always looking for our next great speakers! Do you have an interesting story to tell? Have a look at our Speaker Expression of Interest. You could be part of our fundraiser!

Speakers from our QueenPins Spring Fundraiser:

Rachel Sovka

Rachel is a bold believer in love and resilience. Across 20 countries, through journalism and international development, she has helped people embrace lives of meaning, tap danced, and consumed unhealthy amounts of hot sauce – in that order.

Rachel studied anthropology and philosophy in British Columbia and Quebec before falling in love and spontaneously hitchhiking across the country to Halifax where she was hired at CTV News. When she’s not in the newsroom, Rachel leads community engagement projects from flashmob music videos to teaching classes of refugees, and volunteers with influential organizations from Global Shapers to Symphony Nova Scotia. Rachel is an advocate for women’s rights and literacy in prisons; she currently serves on the board of directors for Halifax’s roller derby league and Youth Art Connection. Lately, she can be found running marathons, becoming a certified hot air balloon pilot, and working to launch a company that makes spreading love more central, creative, and accessible – because she believes in love, and so do you.

Natalie Frederick-Wilson

Natalie launched House of Auto Details and Krown Rust Control with her husband David in 2013. This Bedford, Nova Scotia business has built an innovative and holistic approach to automotive detailing, vehicle reconditioning, and rust protection, helping clients protect their vehicles and preserve antique and exotic cars. Clients include Luckett Vineyards, Tim Hortons, Ford Canada, and BMW Halifax. House of Auto Details has won two Silver Awards from the Halifax Chamber of Commerce: New Business of the Year in 2015 and Small Business of the Year in 2017.

An American immigrant of Afro-Caribbean descent, Natalie believes that helping others succeed is the greatest form of service. She encourages other small business to take calculated risks, mentors international students and newcomers, and enjoys speaking on panels and at networking events. She also sits on the marketing board for Sandy Lake Academy, represents the Halifax Chamber as an ambassador, and volunteers for various community health initiatives.

Denika Coakley

Denika is a woodworker and artist with a lifelong love for design and carpentry. She has loved to paint for as long as she can remember and as a child built boats with her grandfather and older brother. She incorporates her love of painting and building into her one-of-a-kind custom furniture and design.

Today, Denika runs her own company, DC Woodworks, from her home in Dartmouth while raising two young daughters. Her vision is to inspire women of all ages, especially her daughters, to go after their dreams and have the confidence to venture into male-dominated careers. 

Lianne Perry

Lianne is an award-winning freelance writer and performer with extensive experience in theatre. In 2015, she received funding to tour her original one-woman comedy show in Nova Scotia. She’s Got Mono chronicles Lianne’s personal experiences of living with bipolar disorder. In addition to her creative pursuits, Lianne has worked with the Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary’s University since 2010, where she administers employability programs for youth and provides consulting services in online marketing and technology efficiency for businesses in Atlantic Canada. Lianne is a Faculty Advisor for the Enactus team at Saint Mary’s University, a founding member of the Nova Scotia Women in Technology task force, and member of the Techsploration Advisory Board.

A keen and driven entrepreneur, Lianne is also co-founder of two technology companies. PinPoint Virtual Solutions creates mobile apps and online solutions for the event market, and Karmabuy is a start-up focusing on community purchasing power, connecting companies that care with social enterprises  creating unique handmade gifts. Lianne loves being in business, and always has more ideas than time to implement them.