For women over 40, dedicating themselves to the pursuit of excellence in their chosen career.
Award Presented by:
Jessica Kuepfer, Communications Director, Home Hardware
Clarice Ward is a multi-career construction professional and 17-year industry veteran. Currently an independent contractor, Clarice is an advocate for the extensive opportunities within the Canadian Construction industry. Prior to emerging into construction/account management, Clarice worked on construction sites for a decade completing the carpentry apprenticeship and in high-rise site health & safety. Clarice was the first woman to receive the prestigious Premier’s Award in 2019 for the Apprenticeship category; Colleges Ontario’s highest honour and was recently named Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Skills Ontario.
Diane (Dee) Fortier
Becoming a mom of an adopted daughter from Haiti at 44 and, with over 40 years in the industry as a sought-after hairstylist, Dee spent much of her career sharing knowledge, mentoring and teaching. Never one for standing still, Dee explored every aspect and avenue this industry has to offer. She quickly moved from being behind the chair to becoming a salon owner, working on photoshoots, and participating in both photograph and live competitions. Dee has won several awards, including Hair Worlds in Korea, where she took home silver. For 16yrs , as the Artistic Director for Eufora International ,she also styled for New York Fashion Week and celebrities at TIFF.
Doris has been with Walmart Canada for over 50 years. She started at Woolco as a teenager, then transitioned to Sam’s Club & Walmart as an HR Manager. She has a wealth of knowledge of the company and has helped open several stores. Doris is dedicated to her job, her team members and her family. She is an asset to the company and has helped create an amazing culture for the employees of any store she has worked in. She is always welcoming, encouraging and supportive to all those she hires and works with.
Jacqueline LeBeau is a psychotherapist working to help the community and provides therapeutic services to individuals, families, and groups in a community setting. Jacqueline helps to create a safe and supportive environment where clients can explore their thoughts and feelings, develop coping skills, and make positive changes in their lives. Jacqueline is an extraordinary woman who leads by example, lives on purpose and inspires others to be more and do more. She is a modern-day hero, game-changer, mover and shaker, and role model who leads by example. With courage, confidence, commitment, and integrity, she inspires others to go further, making a ripple impact across her community and around the Kitchener/Waterloo Region
Jennifer Hutton is the CEO of Women's Crisis Services of Waterloo Region. She has passionately led the organization as CEO since 2018 but has been with Women’s Crisis Services for more than ten years in total. Jen holds a Master's degree in Social Work and a Master's in Business Administration, both from Wilfrid Laurier University. Prior to working in the violence against women sector, Jen worked in children's mental health. Jen is fuelled by the strength and resiliency she sees in women and children as they overcome significant barriers to lead happier, healthier lives.
Lori Prospero is the CEO at RisingOaks Early Learning Ontario. She has a deep commitment to improving the lives of children and families through evidence-based programming, advocacy, and community. As a collaborative leader, Lori is skilled at motivating and inspiring teams to achieve ambitious goals while cultivating an inclusive culture. She is also a strategic partner with the board of directors, working to influence government planning for child care, enable sustainable growth, and supporting employees through this time of transformation and staffing constraints. Lori is a Waterloo Region resident and a graduate of the University of Waterloo.
Maple Anne Cameron
Maple is a proud Kitchener Waterloo resident who recently has taken her success as a lawyer and her business sense to acquire ownership of Fife Cameron Trial Lawyers, now Maple Cameron Law. She is a third generation alumnus of WLU. Maple’s legal written work has been picked up by publishers, Thomson Reuters and Lexis Nexus as examples on proper form and successful court arguments that the legal community can purchase access to review. She loves law and this community. She tries to instill and inspire others to feel as she does having spoken to students in the Pre-Law Society at WLU, local high schools and Boy Scouts about the law and being a lawyer.
Marie started her career in early 2002 as a probationary Firefighter and has worked her way up the ranks to a full time Captain in 2017 and Acting Platoon Chief in 2022. She has helped blaze the trail for many women considering a career in the Fire Services. She completed early in her career Public Educator Courses and has always been an advocate for teaching children Fire Safety. She was featured in a small film production entitled Smart Risk Heroes filmed by the Office of the Fire Marshall viewed by schools throughout the province.
Stephanie Machado has been a realtor in the area for many years and was born and raised in Waterloo Region. With her passion for helping out the Autistic Youth in our community she is an advocate for so many other notable charities. Stephanie has helped many people achieve the dream of home ownership, is a leader in the entrepreneur space having spoken on panels about the topic. She has helped shape many careers and is a big supporter to several young realtors who want to emulate her success one day.
Tina Roberts dedicated her 40-year career to the University of Waterloo and its community. As the university’s director of marketing and undergraduate recruitment, Tina championed a collaborative and unified approach, turning Waterloo into a powerhouse in how it recruits undergraduate students from around the world. She was an early advocate in recognizing the importance of research in developing recruitment strategies. Her focus on evidence-based strategies led to many successful and award-winning projects and to significantly increased enrollment. Tina's strengths were always about creating connections. She was involved in many cross-campus initiatives, such as helping to pilot a campus mentorship program for staff and leading the marketing committee for the university’s 50th anniversary.
Tracelyn Cornelius devotes her professional and academic career to tackling systemic racism. She applies an EDI (equity, diversity, and inclusion) lens to engage communities by challenging oppressive narratives to ensure that communications are inclusive. A former educator and journalist, Tracelyn has navigated diverse stakeholder networks to build professional relationships with diverse teams. She is a wife and mother of three children. Tracelyn lives by this credo by poet and author Maya Angelo: “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humour and some style.”
With over 25 years working in the region, Tracy is known for being a pillar of service to the community and industry. After decades of being a top-performing mortgage agent, Tracy decided to open her own brokerage in 2018, winning “Top New Mortgage Brokerage” shortly after. Tracy has co-authored two books and is a sought-after speaker on the topics of finance, economy, and resilience as a female entrepreneur. She is a proud Accredited Mortgage Professional (AMP) and has served as Executive Secretary on the MPC Board. She's a passionate advocate for mental wellness and suicide prevention.