Women+ in (Creative) Business Mentoring Program
Assistance (virtual or in-person) is being offered by the City of Hamilton for Hamilton-based entrepreneurs who have been in business for approximately six (6) months to five (5) years and identify as women as well as transgender, gender fluid, non-binary, and gender non-conforming individuals who are comfortable in a space that centres on the experiences of women+ in business.
The purpose of the Women+ in (Creative) Business Mentoring Program is to provide new businesses in either film, music, or fashion with a total of three (3) hours of free one-to-one assistance and guidance from a mentor. Mentors will be matched with businesses in the same field industry (i.e. film mentors with film businesses etc.) Mentors will have substantial business and industry-specific experience and offer advice and insight in the areas of:
- Career and business development and growth within film, fashion, or music industries;
- Feedback and guidance around key skills and competencies; and
- Business planning and client/customer development.
Women+ in Business Mentors
Kiana "rookz" Eastmond, CEO/Director at Sandbox Studios and Executive Director at Toronto Musicians' Association
Kiana ‘rookz’ Eastmond is the CEO of the Toronto Musicians’ Association and has spent her entire career working in the music business. Starting off as a music manager to founding one of Toronto’s most popular creative spaces Sandbox Studios, Kiana has worked in almost every facet of the industry. From negotiating her first major placement with Drake, producing concerts, setting up joint ventures, to sitting on the Toronto Music Advisory Council, Kiana cares about all things Canadian Music Business. These past several years Kiana has been busy touring the world consulting for cities aspiring to develop their music industry’s economic development strategy, while also keynoting on stages for PayPal, Google, Twitter, Facebook and many more about the importance of sustainability of the creative sector for economic and cultural development.
Jo Lukis, owner of Just Really Good
Jo Lukis has been a music marketing specialist for over a decade, working at major and independent record labels and artist management companies. Jo launched her music marketing agency Just Really Good in 2019 which has grown to work with artists around the world, and has a strong a focus on elevating women, queer and BIPOC artists.
Angela DeMontigny is an internationally-renowned, Indigenous Canadian designer. Her custom made and ready-to-wear, all leather clothing collections, bold accessories and statement jewellery collections have been sold in specialty boutiques and galleries throughout North America and Europe since 1995. Angela has not only been a trailblazer for Aboriginal fashion for two decades, she has also produced some of Canada's most important showcases for Indigenous designers such as FashioNation - L'Oreal Fashion Week, Toronto; Fire & Fashion - Planet IndigenUs, Toronto; From Culture to Couture - Toronto and the first ever, Aboriginal Fashion Week during the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, B.C. She has been an avid advocate and supporter of Aboriginal designers, artisans, women and youth entrepreneurs throughout her career. Angela is currently a mentor for the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Ryerson University’s Fashion Zone.
Sumit is fashion entrepreneur who runs GOAT Vintage, a vintage and upcycling studio based out of the Cotton Factory in Hamilton. GOAT works with large retailers in the US and Canada by curating sustainably made upcycled collections for in-store and digital. Sumit started GOAT in 2016 after a career in management consulting in retail in Western Europe.
Kat has produced dozens of shorts and series that have aired on PBS Kids, CBC Kids, Universal Kids, Sesame Street, Sensical, Kidoodle TV, Knowledge, and Peacock Junior. Kat’s business - Turtlebox Productions - was recognized for their work on Design Squad for PBS with a Daytime Emmy nomination in 2018. Turtlebox currently has an animated series in development with CBC Kids and a live-action unscripted series in development with YouTube Originals.
Cher is a Mohawk / Ojibwe filmmaker, speaker, writer and entrepreneur. She has experience in theatre, television and film, working as a reporter before leaving to expand her skills in a production house. She is a founding member of Ladies of Film & Television and owner of Ceeit Productions. Cher has a passion for projects relating to Indigenous issues, reconciliation, cultural reconnection, youth initiatives, inequality and injustice. Her work has taken her across Canada into the United States and overseas, but her favorite place is within her creative community in Hamilton Ontario.
How to Apply
The initial application deadline is October 28, 2022 or when spaces are filled.
Three key eligibility criteria for this program; your business must:
- Operate in Hamilton (i.e. includes Ancaster, Dundas, Stoney Creek, Waterdown etc.) and be in the area of film, music, or fashion. Includes online businesses.
- Have been operating for ~ six (6) months to five (5) years.
- Be led/owned by a woman, transgender, gender fluid, non-binary, or gender non-conforming individual.
The program will remain open until all spots are filled or by October 28, 2022.