News Talk 770 believes in the power of ideas and the leaders that bring them to life. Don’t miss conversations with some of Alberta’s most interesting leaders as they discuss their path to success, insights into the latest business trends and share advice for budding entrepreneurs. News Talk 770 and Get Assist invite you to meet these influential Albertans. Join Angela Kokott as she talks to the Alberta business leaders who are helping shape our province, Thursday afternoons at 3. Today’s Leaders Series—presented by Get Assist and News Talk 770.
Erynn Nicole Lyster, a designer and entrepreneur, knows all-too-well the joys, but also the pitfalls, of being your own boss. Namely, she is very familiar with working alone, at home, sometimes not getting out of her pajamas until noon, and occasionally going for days without actually interacting face-to-face with others. She was “living the dream” of being an entrepreneur but, to be honest, her home office felt isolating and she began to have a persistent nagging, fear inducing thought – was she becoming a hermit? Can one lose one’s ability to function socially?
At the recommendation of a friend she checked out a coworking space – at the time a new concept in Calgary – and immediately traded her home office for a membership. In 2013 when the opportunity materialized to become the owner of the business, she seized it. She had plenty of ideas for making the space unique, inviting and relevant to the contemporary entrepreneur and she quickly roped her brother, Zach, into helping. The brother-sister duo continue to dedicate themselves to bringing an enjoyable lifestyle to work within a space that’s centered on community, productivity and the passion of our city’s freelancers & entrepreneurs.
*Note: Truthfully, sometimes Erynn still stays at home to “work” and doesn’t get out of her pajamas until noon, but now it is a choice. And she never has to refer to WikiHow’s ‘How to Avoid Being Socially Awkward’ …
Zach Lyster has spent the last nine years wheelin’ and dealin’ in the real estate world. It became all too apparent in 2012 that his life was quickly becoming all work and no play, so he decided to take a year off and travel to Asia on his own “Eat, Pray, Love” journey – picture Buddhist monks, beaches in Bali, and Chinese markets (however, all of this sans Julia Roberts, sadly).
During his travels Zach discovered a new appreciation for “work/life balance” so when the opportunity arose to build a business dedicated to bringing an enjoyable lifestyle to work, he didn’t think twice about becoming involved.
He enjoys collaborating with his sister, Erynn, to create a workspace that attracts entrepreneurs from all walks of business. And, yes, perhaps a family drama or two rears its head every now and then, but that just makes life spicier at The Commons – and possibly has Zach looking nostalgically back at his days of living with the monks in a small Thai village.
Jennifer Martin, President and CEO of TELUS Spark, guided completion of the first new purpose-built science centre in Canada in over 25 years. This vision of a next-generation science centre – its new role of active engagement in and with the community – was honed over more than 25 years of experience.
Prior to joining TELUS Spark, Jennifer had a distinguished career at the Ontario Science Centre in Toronto and at Science North in Sudbury. She is a recognized leader in the international science centre community and a frequent presenter at international conferences. Jennifer graduated from Laurentian University with a B.Sc. in Biology and from the Schulich School of Business at York University with an MBA.
John Stanton is a member of the Order of Canada and author of ten books on running and walking. He is recipient of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society Dr. Harold N. Segall Award of Merit and a Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Alberta, the Canadian Medical Association Award for Excellence in Health Promotion. Inducted into the Canadian Retail Hall of Fame, he is also member Alberta Business Hall of Fame and the Hon. Lt. Col. of the Loyal Edmonton Regiment (4 PPCLI) and a recipient of the Alberta Centennial Medal and the Queens Diamond Jubilee Medal and board member of the Commonwealth Games Foundation.
Stanton is regularly featured in the National Post, the Globe and Mail, Vancouver Province, and media outlets across Canada. He has run over 60 marathons, hundreds of road races, and numerous triathlons, including the Hawaiian World Championship Ironman competition. John Stanton is the Founder and CEO of the Running Room a family company owned and operated Canadian company with over 120 stores in Canada and the US.
Dr. Miller has been President and CEO of United Way of Calgary and Area since March 2012. She is known for her relational style and her commitment to shared responsibility for the success of the city of Calgary. Lucy’s background is in education serving most recently as the Chief Superintendent for the Calgary Catholic School District.
She is very active in the broader community serving on the Boards of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, the Safe Communities Opportunity and Resource Centre (SORCe), the Haskayne School of Business Advisory Committee and is a member of the Premier’s Council on Alberta’s Promise. She has been recognized with the Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence, the Women of Distinction Award, the Lieutenant Governor’s Leadership Award, the Papal Benemerenti Medal of Excellence, and was named one of Alberta’s 50 Most Influential People and one of Canada’s 100 Most Powerful Women.
Ken King is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation; the company that encompasses the NHL Calgary Flames, the AHL Stockton Thunder, the WHL Calgary Hitmen, the CFL Calgary Stampeders and the NLL Calgary Roughnecks. Born and raised in Hanley, Saskatchewan, King is a strong believer in support for the community; he is involved with several organizations including the TELUS Community Board, the Calgary Sport Tourism Authority, Director of the Calgary Airport Authority and is a former Chairman of the Calgary Chamber of Commerce. In 2005, King received an Alberta Centennial Medal for outstanding contributions to the province of Alberta. He also received an honourary doctorate degree from the University of Calgary in 2012 and an honourary degree from Mount Royal University in 2014.Prior to joining CSEC in 2001, King enjoyed a 30-year career in the newspaper business that included senior executive positions in Canada’s leading newspapers including President and Publisher of the Calgary Sun and Calgary Herald.
Bruce Fikowski is the founder and CEO of GetAssist. Bruce started the company after seeing a need to connect Calgarians with the services they need over social media. GetAssist connects people with micro businesses and small services providers – everything from painters and plumbers to sharing hobbies like photography. Bruce grew up in Ottawa and received a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Calgary and a Masters of Project Management at the University of Victoria. Bruce got into the social networking business on his own after experiencing a need that was not addressed in the industry.
Bill joined the Calgary Public Library as its CEO in early 2014. Previously, Bill was the Director of the King County Library System in western Washington state, where he led King County to become the Library Journal’s “Library of the Year” in 2011.
In his two years at the Calgary Public Library, Bill has been busy. He is working hard on developing relationships for the Library with government and community groups and partnerships with the school boards. On other fronts, new initiatives include a full rebranding, a new catalogue and website, a focus on safety at the Central Library, free library cards for all, the growth of the Library’s Foundation, and a refresh in the design and collections at all libraries in the system. Work on Calgary’s New Central Library, headed by the Calgary Municipal Land Corporation, continues on time and on budget. In the meantime, the Library is getting ready for it by piloting new projects and materials throughout the city’s 18 community libraries.