FIND A LOCATION

  • EXCHANGE OFFICE

    WINNIPEG

    President: Jeff Ryzner

    100 – 321 McDermot Avenue
    Winnipeg, Manitoba R3A 0A3 • P: 204-942-1493

    LEARN MORE CONTACT MAP
  • North Forge | South

    MORDEN

    Executive Director: Alison Lea

    500 Stephen Street
    Morden, Manitoba R6M 1T7 • P: 204-330-0292

    LEARN MORE CONTACT MAP
  • North Forge | East

    PINAWA

    President: Shane Li

    24 Aberdeen Avenue
    Pinawa, Manitoba R0E 1L0 • P: 204-262-6400

    LEARN MORE CONTACT MAP
  • Fabrication Lab

    WINNIPEG

    Vice-President: Marney Stapley

    3rd Floor, 125 Adelaide Street
    Winnipeg, Manitoba R3A 0A3 • P: 204-799-2033

    LEARN MORE CONTACT MAP
  • SMARTPARK OFFICE

    WINNIPEG

    President: Jeff Ryzner

    200 – 135 Innovation Drive
    Winnipeg, Manitoba R3T 6A8 • P: 204-262-6400

    LEARN MORE CONTACT MAP
SEE ALL

North Forge Pioneer to Spearhead U of C Entrepreneurial Centre

“No one is irreplaceable” — that’s how the saying goes. I’m pretty sure there are a lot of people in Manitoba finding it hard to agree with that right about now.

Joelle Foster, founding board member of North Forge Technology Exchange, and Manitoba’s premier champion of entrepreneurship, is being pulled westward by a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Currently serving as Futurpreneur Canada’s Director for Manitoba, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Nunavut and Northwest Territories, she’ll be taking the reins as Executive Director for the newly formed Hunter Hub for Entrepreneurial Thinking at the University of Calgary.

To say she will be missed is tragically understated.

“Joelle has helped to completely transform Manitoba’s startup scene,” said Jeff Ryzner, President of North Forge Technology Exchange. “She has always known and promoted that, as support organizations, we can do more together. And she’s right.”

Joelle’s commitment to cultivating entrepreneurial talent is legendary, and the excitement she feels in helping others realize their dreams pours through her voice.

“When I meet someone who wants to start a business, I immediately share that passion with them,” said Foster. “My job is incredible – I get to listen to other people’s dreams and then help them make them come true.”

Luckily for all Manitobans, Joelle’s upcoming move to Calgary for what she describes as the “job of a lifetime” won’t take her away completely. She’ll continue to serve on the North Forge board. And even though her physical location may be changing, her footprint on the Manitoba business community won’t fade anytime soon.

Obby Khan, Founder and CEO of Shawarma Khan and Green Carrot Juice Company, attributes a great deal of his entrepreneurial journey to the help he received from Joelle early on. 

“I’m honestly not sure my businesses would have gotten off the ground without her,” said Khan. “From our first meeting five years ago when I had no idea what I was doing, to today when I still don’t know what I’m doing, she has always been there for me with her support, wisdom and love. I guess this means I need to open my first Shawarma Khan in Calgary, so Joelle can get her pita chips and garlic fix.”

Lennard Taylor, owner of Lennard Taylor Design Studio, is another of the many business people who express gratitude for Foster and the investment she’s willing to make to help others succeed.

“Joelle has been such an integral part of the entrepreneurship community,” said Taylor. “She’s like a mother to all of us… she’s nurturing, loving and so devoted to seeing us shine.”

Not surprisingly, Joelle affectionately refers to all the entrepreneurs she’s helped guide, like Khan and Taylor, as her kids. And she takes her role as a community leader very much to heart.

“I’ve always believed that giving back is what makes you a leader,” said Foster. “By giving back to my community I’ve gained so much insight into how different groups can work together to achieve great things.”

Given the connections she’s made and her role in seeing so many successful businesses flourish in the city she’s called home for the past 27 years, Joelle knows how hard it’s going to be to move away from the community she holds so dear to her heart.

“There are amazing things happening in the Prairies and this community is definitely what I’ll miss the most,” said Foster. “I’ve been so fortunate to have helped other people plant some very successful entrepreneurial seeds here and I’ll be looking forward to watching them grow.”

On behalf of North Forge and the entire Manitoba business community, we would like to wish Joelle Foster the greatest success in her new role and thank her for the immeasurable impact she’s made.

Share

Supporters

North Forge Technology Exchange

Share
LEARN MORE

SEED - Altona

Share
LEARN MORE

Relish

Share
LEARN MORE

Portage Regional Economic Development

Share
LEARN MORE

Morden & District Chamber of Commerce

Share
LEARN MORE

Morden Community Development Corp

Share
LEARN MORE

Community Futures Heartland

Share
LEARN MORE

Carman

Share
LEARN MORE

Access Credit Union

Share
LEARN MORE

North Forge East

Share
LEARN MORE

Community Futures Winnipeg Rivers

Share
LEARN MORE

Business Development Bank of Canada

Share
LEARN MORE

Barkman Concrete Ltd.

Share
LEARN MORE

Pitblado Law

Share
LEARN MORE

Bit Space Development

Share
LEARN MORE

Pinawa Community Development Corporation

Share
LEARN MORE

Canadian Nuclear Laboratories

Share
LEARN MORE

Canadian National Energy Alliance

Share
LEARN MORE

Pegboard Hosting

Share
LEARN MORE

Western Economic Diversification Canada

Share
LEARN MORE

Government of Canada

Share
LEARN MORE

City of Winnipeg

Share
LEARN MORE

University of Manitoba

Share
LEARN MORE

MNP LLP

Share
LEARN MORE

Fabbaloo

Share
LEARN MORE

High Speed Crow

Share
LEARN MORE

GO Software

Share
LEARN MORE

Deloitte

Share
LEARN MORE

Red River College

Share
LEARN MORE

Princess Auto

Share
LEARN MORE

Bell MTS

Share
LEARN MORE

Thompson Dorfman Sweatman

Share
LEARN MORE

Relish New Brand Experience Inc.

Share
LEARN MORE

Stu Clark Centre for Entreprenuership

Share
LEARN MORE

Manitoba Government

Share
LEARN MORE

les.net

Share
LEARN MORE