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Rotman Family Entrepreneurship Awards

“I didn’t have any self-esteem or any goals; I was just drifting. I was in a very dark place in. So, coming from the bottom of the barrel to now – a life where I want to try, I want to fight, I want to compete – it’s pretty crazy.” 

~ Sylvain Rollin, Bell Let’s Talk Start-Up Award Recipient


On November 15, 2023, we gathered the Rise community to celebrate the outstanding achievements and resilience of Rise clients and volunteers to remarkably inspiring ends.

We would like to thank Anne-Marie Mediwake for hosting the event and leading such a personal and thought-provoking panel discussion. And to the award recipients: thank you for sharing your stories and experiences so candidly.  

Rise supports people who might otherwise find themselves excluded or underserved by the traditional employment and financial systems. We help them access the tools, capital and other resources they need to develop their skills and build a business.

What we see from our award recipients is that those businesses help our clients create suitable work for themselves that can not only improve their quality of life, but also enable them to make important community contributions.

We would like to recognize our award sponsors, Bell Let’s Talk and Scotiabank. Thank you for your ongoing support of this important celebration.

Finally, we’d like to thank all of you—our clients, volunteers, partners and staff. Our collective impact is made possible by your individual contributions, and we couldn’t be more grateful.

James Summers-Gill — Rotman Family Entrepreneur of the Year

Kendra L. d’Eon — Dr. Paul Garfinkel Resilience Award

Sylvain Rollin — Bell Let’s Talk Start-Up Award

Glorie Averbach  Scotiabank Volunteer of the Year Award

Tia Upshaw — Dave Richardson Champion Award

To learn more about our award recipients, visit our Impact Stories page.


Missed the event? Watch it here:

Award Sponsors