Skip to Main Content

Indigenous Women in Business

Monday, June 12, 2023

Watch Now
Listen Now

The Empire Club of Canada Presents:
Indigenous Women in Business

Panellists aim to explore the best ways to invite First Nations women to become part of Canada’s professional community. Attendees will hear from Indigenous women in business who have successfully navigated the landscape to build and advance their careers. The speakers will share their career journeys and highlight the networking, mentorship, and sponsorship opportunities they utilized. They will also discuss the barriers and challenges they faced and how they found fulfillment in their careers. Speakers will also examine solutions for hiring, developing, and promoting Indigenous women by simulating cultural change and establishing access through partnerships. Join us to learn from Indigenous women who have achieved success in their careers and explore ways to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

The content presented is free of charge but please note that the Empire Club of Canada retains copyright. Neither the speeches themselves nor any part of their content may be used for any purpose other than personal interest or research without the explicit permission of the Empire Club of Canada.

Views and Opinions Expressed Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the speakers or panelists are those of the speakers or panelists and do not necessarily reflect or represent the official views and opinions, policy or position held by The Empire Club of Canada.

News Articles

Toronto Star | June 12, 2023
More work to be done on Indigenous representation in corporate world: panel

Northern Ontario Business | June 13, 2023
Indigenous Leaders: Elevating Indigenous women in business a collective effort, says panel


headshot of Tammy  Brown

Tammy Brown

National Industrial Markets Leader, KPMG

Tammy is the National Industry Leader for Industrial Markets and the Deputy Chair of the Board of Directors at KPMG in Canada. The Industrial Markets industry group is comprised of the Automotive and Industrial Manufacturing sectors. As a National Industry Leader, she regularly meets with our markets and growth leadership teams to develop and share solutions to the challenges and opportunities facing manufacturers and other industrial companies. Tammy has been working with clients in the industrial markets for over 20 years. As an audit Partner, she has worked extensively with public companies, including those that are US registrants, very large

private companies, and international organizations. Her client base has been extremely active in both private and public offerings as well as acquisitions. She is also experienced in Financial Statement Auditing, US GAAP, Private Enterprise GAAP, International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and Internal Control Audit and Advisory Service

headshot of Tabatha Bull

Tabatha Bull

President & CEO, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business

Tabatha is Anishinaabe, a proud member of Nipissing First Nation. Awarded CEO of the Year for 2022 by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, Tabatha as CCAB’s president and CEO is committed to help rebuild and strengthen the path towards reconciliation and a prosperous Indigenous economy to benefit all Canadians. As an electrical engineer, Tabatha is committed to supporting Indigenous inclusion and diversity in Canada’s energy sector.

Serving the Indigenous community through CCAB’s commitment to support the Indigenous economy, Tabatha is an appointee to many boards, including the Dexterra Group, Wigwamen Inc., CN’s inaugural Indigenous Advisory Council, and Catalyst CEO advisory board in Canada to name a few. Tabatha is dedicated to diversity and removing systematic barriers to improve opportunities for Indigenous business and women across all industry sectors.

headshot of Jenn  Harper

Jenn Harper

Founder & CEO, Cheekbone Beauty Cosmetics Inc

An award-winning social entrepreneur, Jenn Harper is the founder and CEO of Cheekbone Beauty Cosmetics INC. Cheekbone Beauty aims to help every Indigenous person see and feel their value in the world while developing sustainable colour cosmetics that won’t end up in a landfill.

Jenn Harper is an Anishinaabe woman and is a member of the Northwest Angle #33 First Nation in Kenora, ON. Throughout her life, Jenn has struggled with accepting her Indigenous roots. She was estranged from her Indigenous family for much of her childhood and adult life. After learning about her grandmother’s experience in residential school, she understood how her family was affected by generational trauma. Harper has been making a name for herself in the beauty industry for a number of years but gained popularity quickly after appearing on CBC’s hit show, Dragon’s Den in 2019. Since her appearance on the show, Jenn has been featured as Chatelaine’s “Woman of the Year in 2019”, Canadian Business’s “2022 New Innovator’s List”, and Entrepreneur Magazine’s “100 Women of Influence in 2022” list.

She continues to be deeply involved in all aspects of Cheekbone Beauty operations, including product innovation with the Cheekbone Beauty chemist and sustainability experts to reimagine beauty products, starting with raw ingredients all the way to how all products are packaged. As part of its sustainability mission, Cheekbone Beauty is associated with organizations such as Pact Collective, 1% for the Planet, and B.Corp. These partnerships show the brand’s commitment to both people and the planet.

By early 2023, Cheekbone Beauty will be available in 50 Sephora stores across Canada as a Sephora Clean and Planet Positive brand. It will also be available in 600 JCPenney stores across the United States.

Giving back to the Indigenous community is critical to Cheekbone Beauty’s mission. To date, Cheekbone Beauty has contributed upwards of $200,000 in product, monetary, and project-focused donations to organizations across North America and will continue to do so.

headshot of Caitlin Tolley

Caitlin Tolley

Board Director, Empire Club of Canada

Born and raised in Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg, Quebec, an Algonquin First Nation, located 130 kilometers North of Ottawa, Caitlin left her First Nation at 17 years old to pursue CEGEP. Today, as the legal counsel with the Indigenous Justice Division in Toronto as part of the Ministry of the Attorney General, Ontario, Caitlin is determined to amplify the voices and lived experiences of Indigenous women, ensuring that they are not only represented but heard and respected at every decision-making table. Prior to this, Caitlin was recognized by the Public Policy Forum as the “Emerging Leader of the Year” in 2018 and spoke before the Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples. Caitlin remains connected to her community and culture as a jingle dress dancer.