Hi! I'm Lauren.
I am loving my role as Department Head of the Innovation & Entrepreneurship team. We have an incredible team of dreamers and drivers all working to unleash the entrepreneur and innovator in Yukoners.
I came to YukonU with experience in high level customer service, community building and program development. My early career was dedicated to developing and managing high-level customer service experiences all over the world with Backroads International. Then I transitioned into nonprofit management via operations and fundraising in the USA. Best of all, this international experience and passion for adventure brought me and my husband, Patrick, to Yukon in 2015 where I helped expand the only coworking ("Cospace"), makerspace ("Makespace") for Yukonstruct, and community innovation hub, NorthLight Innovation, north of 60.
Today, with I&E, we run a multimillion-dollar budget and are responsible for supporting Yukon’s early- to mid-stage innovations and entrepreneurs to explore and develop risky and uncertain ideas from concept to prototype to commercialization, growth and scaling through funding, networking, and educational programming. Our team started IncubateNorth, Yukon's first business incubation program, helping promising enterprises scale with the help of outside venture investments and grants. During the earliest days of COVID we worked with local and national advisors and partners to design PIVOT which won Top 100 Canadian Recovery Projects (Future of Good) and subsequently Elevate, programs responding to businesses in need of support to revisit, reboot, and revive their businesses during the COVID-19 crisis. In addition, we've developed partnerships with institutions across the nation including Ryerson University where I&E now serves as the Women Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub for the North. My most favorite parts of each of of professional and personal roles has been designing systems change as well as understanding individuals and helping them carve a path between where they are and where they want to be.
Coaching and mentoring individuals has been a long time passion for me. I am fortunate to have international experience working/volunteering/living in 27 countries around the world. I have a beautiful daughter and we love being outside. I enjoy watercoloring, exercise and food!
Come hang out with us at NorthLight anytime - we want to hear your ideas and be part of your dream!