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Girls Inc. of Halton Celebration Luncheon

  • Spencer's at the Waterfront 1340 Lakeshore Road Burlington, ON, L7S 1Y2 Canada (map)

Join Girls Inc. of Halton for our Celebration Luncheon on August 31, 2017 from 11 AM – 2 PM at the gorgeous Spencer’s at the Waterfront in Downtown Burlington. We will be celebrating our 15th anniversary of inspiring all girls to be Strong, Smart, and Bold in the Halton community, as well as celebrating Canada’s 150th anniversary. Our celebration will include a discussion of the history of girls and women in Canada and how we came to be the strong, smart, and bold leaders that we are today.

The luncheon will begin with a one-hour networking session for guests to learn more about Girls Inc. experiences and each other. Following this will be a lunch and keynote speech from Dr. Maral Ouzounian, Cardiac and Aortic surgeon at Peter Munk Cardiac Centre and Assistant Professor of Surgery at the University of Toronto. A panel discussion will then take place, featuring leaders from the area, including: Theresa Firestone, Senior Vice President, Healthcare Businesses, Shoppers Drug Mart; Karine Morin, Justice of the Peace, Ontario Court of Justice; Maria Locker, Founder and CEO of Mompreneur Showcase Group; Fareen Samji 5-time ILDC Canadian Women’s Long Drive Champion and Entrepreneur; and more to follow. There will also be a Q+A period following the panel discussion for those who have questions for these inspiring women.

This event will allow us to come together to celebrate our accomplishments in Halton over the past 15 years, as well as Canadian women’s accomplishments over the past 150+ years, while also looking forward to where we will be in the next 150 years.

The cost of the event is $150/person, which is eligible for a $100 tax donation credit, and also includes the cost of lunch and a swag bag full of goodies. Corporate sponsorships are available.

Please wear red and/or white!

Tickets: or email for ticket details.


Celebration Luncheon Participants

Dr. Maral Ouzounian, Keynote Speaker

Dr. Maral Ouzounian is a heart surgeon at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, Toronto General Hospital, and Assistant Professor of Surgery at the University of Toronto. She received her medical degree from the McGill University and her PhD from the University of Toronto. Dr. Ouzounian is married to Michael Torbay and is mom to 2-year old Oliver Torbay and their bouncing baby boy, who was born in June 2017.

Robyn Tremblay, Moderator

As a founding partner of relate social capital, Robyn Tremblay brings ten years of experience working in paediatric healthcare foundations to her firm. A graduate of the University of Toronto, and the Humber College Fundraising Management program, Robyn combines her passion for building programs and raising funds to help organizations establish sustainable funding models. Relate is proud to have helped clients initiate successful fund development programs, and donor relations programs that engage their communities in a meaningful and authentic way.

When she isn’t working, Robyn spends time with her husband chasing after their two little boys and a big dog.

Maria Locker, Panelist

Maria Locker is the Founder & CEO of Mompreneurs®, a Canada-wide ‘movement’ which has developed into multiple team members and chapter locations across the country, a non-profit arm in partnership with the Federal Government of Canada and Coca-Cola Canada, a national Award Series and Conference, and a quarterly print magazine. Over the past 6 years, the organization has grown its membership and online community to over 17,000 members and subscribers within Canada and the U.S, and has a dedicated social media community over 80,000 strong. 

Maria grew up in the world of retail business, as one of four children to her entrepreneurial parents; her family has owned and operated La Rose Bakery in her hometown of Milton, Ontario since she was 2 years old. She believes that business and personal lives aren’t necessarily interchangeable, and that it is possible to have a successful business and a thriving family life without sacrificing one for the other.

Karine Morine, Panelist

Karine Morin was appointed by counsel, as a Bilingual Justice of the Peace of the Ontario Court of Justice, on December 5th, 2012. She is the first black woman Justice of the peace assigned to Brampton in the Central West Region.

Karine Morin, a Canadian born from Haitian parents, graduated from York University in 1990. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Women’s Studies. At York University, she was very committed to the cause of Francophones minorities and had taken the lead to organize the International Women’s Week at the campus, the International Cultural Annual Gala Event, and the very first conference on violence against women for francophone immigrants families, creating a safe environment for women to exchange on their issues.

Fareen Samji, Panelist

Fareen “Far” Samji is the current ILDC International Women’s Long Drive Champion and 5-time ILDC Canadian Women’s Long Drive Champion(2012-2016).  With a personal best Long Drive of 334 yards, at 5’5” tall, she is considered small for the sport, proving that bigger isn’t always better… better is better. And, at only 42 years old, she has achieved success as an entrepreneur, an internationally acclaimed athlete, and a community leader.

Theresa Firestone, Panelist

Theresa Firestone is Senior Vice President, Healthcare Businesses with Shoppers Drug Mart where she oversees Shoppers Specialty Health Network, Medisystems Pharmacies and Shoppers Home Healthcare, including 49 corporate retail outlets and Sanis, an SDM wholly owned Generic company.

Theresa was inducted into the Canadian Healthcare Marketing Hall of Fame in 2010 and was also honored as one of 12 outstanding Canadian Women by the Weizmann Institute that same year. She was awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002 and was honored by the Montreal Board of Trade as an Exceptional Woman for business achievements in 2001. The University of Guelph recognized Theresa’s long standing commitment to volunteering by introducing an annual Student Volunteer Award in 1999.  The award was inspired by Theresa who as a University student, invested up to 30 hours a week in volunteer activities. 

Angela Hickman, Co-Chair

I have been on the Board for Girls Inc of Halton for almost 3 years now. When I heard about Girls Inc and what it does for young girls, I knew I needed to be a part of such a wonderful group. Teaching young girls to be Strong, Smart and Bold is very important to me because I have daughter.

I remember overhearing my daughter (who was only 6 at the time) ask my even younger son if she had a big belly. It broke my heart to hear those words knowing that she was already thinking about her looks. What's worse is I knew she probably got that from me, as I know I have asked my husband that question when trying on outfits. I decided in that moment, I would do my best to not concentrate on my outer features and to let my daughter know that we are beautiful inside and out. I also want her to know that she can succeed at anything she works hard for. I have told her that the words "I can't" are no longer to be used in her vocabulary. It isn't always easy but now that she has been enrolled in the Girls Inc program in her school and attended our first annual camp this summer, I have noticed a big change in her attitude and she is more confident in the things that she does. I am grateful for Girls Inc of Halton and look forward to watching our programming grow.

Lori Anne Oja, Co-chair

My current role is as Board member and Board secretary.  I will have been with the Board 3 years in September.

It is evident that despite progress, there are continuing challenges for gender equality in the workplace and in life.  While changing bias is an important part of addressing the gaps, I also believe that we need to foster skills and self-esteem in girls as early as we can, so we build a larger pipeline of strong, confident women to leadership positions in the world.  Girls Inc. Halton has role to do just that and why they have my support.

This event promise to be great opportunity to celebrate women and girls with a great local line up of impressive women networking in a wonderful setting. 

Earlier Event: July 23
Girls Inc. of Halton Family Picnic