Tanya Woods

Tanya Woods is working to create a more sustainable, connected world through kindness. As Chief Impact Officer for Kind Village, Tanya helps make positive social change more accessible to everyone by putting consumers, business owners and professionals in touch with the causes that most need their help,

Kind Village is a social enterprise, and Tanya inspires people to lend their expertise, their awareness-raising abilities or their funds to make things better for all, and she helps influence consumers to support companies and businesses that are dedicated to building better communities. For this, Tanya Woods is one of #150GreatPeople in Ottawa, and here she answers the questionnaire:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

Ottawa is special to me because it is home. I grew up in this city and have nostalgic memories embedded at every corner, it seems. It is the place I like to think of as my village, because at every outing the odds are high that I will run into people I know and have known for years, and that is pretty cool.

I remember growing up here and thinking Ottawa was a pretty city, a great place to raise a family, very cold (weather) and kind of boring. Over the years, the city has evolved and become reinvigorated with the vibrant energy of its incredible citizens and visitors! Having lived abroad and had the chance to visit world-class cities around the globe many times over, I can say that there is still no place that replicates the comforting feeling I get landing at MacDonald-Cartier airport – it’s that feeling you get when you know you are home.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

I love interacting with the people who share this community with me. Ottawa is a very diverse, caring and kind community. Those who have lived here for some time, I hope know this to be true. I also hope that those who are newer to the city are discovering how much heart resides here. I want newcomers to feel welcome. As a local that really matters to me. I also love that I never cease to be amazed by the talented creators, entrepreneurs, business owners and community builders who are constantly finding new ways to make our communities stronger, more sustainable and kinder.

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

Thank you! My values guide the work I do in the community, and values-based work is without a doubt the most fulfilling work one can do in their lifetime, which is why it is important to me.

I remember when I started my first non-profit (Artists Legal Services Ottawa). I worked closely with friends I knew who shared my love for the arts and who also wanted to empower creators by sharing essential knowledge to help them succeed at their craft. That was seven years ago and the organization is still going strong and has supported many creators in our community. The same values led me to join other friends to start Girl Force – a group of awesome individuals in Ottawa’s videogame industry who are voluntarily teaching girls and non-binary folks, ages 14+, the skills they need to make videogames and have careers in a field that they love. Again, the focus of this work is on empowerment through community and skills building.

The work that I have been able to do with these organizations, and many others, has provided me with lessons and gifts along the way that inform my most ambitious project, Kind Village. Kind Village has been a special project that I have been working on for five years, alongside so many of Ottawa’s kindest and brightest individuals, many of whom are on this list! 

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

I am most proud of what our Kind Village team and community has been able to achieve since our humble start in 2013.

For those who don’t know what Kind Village is, it is a social enterprise that two people started as an “audacious experiment” to see how much impact could be created using only in-kind resources. Today, the team has grown to 12 very talented individuals that focus efforts on harnessing the time, talents and things available from generous donors (in local communities) to help address big community issues like hunger, poverty, gaps in health and education, equality, human rights, and environmental challenges.

We have been able to help over 60 charities, while high-fiving thousands of incredible donors and supporters who care about their causes and the organizations – like charities and community non-profit groups – working to address the issues.
Since our start we have:

– Raised awareness and facilitated in-kind donations to many charities in Ottawa and beyond;
– Collected 400+ pyjamas for kids in need (Family Pyjama Party in the Capital, 2015);
– Inspired global youth attending the One Young World Summit by sharing the stories of incredible local change makers and Kind Village members (One Young City, 2016);
– Launched an initiative to tackle hunger in Canadian communities with top Canadian chefs and food industry trailblazers (Feed The City, 2017);
– Co-created one of Canada’s largest social impact, interactive art installations at Canada’s Science and Technology Museum with local artist eepmon (Yours To Discover, 2017); and,
– Launched our community giving platform (2017), which has been a core project (and big time labour of love) since our start.

2017 was a big year for us. A lot of our effort really started to materialize and we were fortunate to get recognized by great groups who are values aligned.
The local support we have had this year has been overwhelming and encouraging.

We were also fortunate to have some international recognition, including an invitation from the folks at the Obama Foundation, who selected us to attend the inaugural Obama Foundation Summit in Chicago at the end of 2017 and meet President Obama and his team. The Kind Village journey never ceases to amaze and humble me. I am so eternally grateful for everyone who has been part of this story. Thanks to all of you!

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

I would love Ottawa to become known as the world’s kindest (and as a result most vibrant and sustainable) city in the world. With such wonderful people, like those on this list, but also those quiet and mighty champions out in our local communities who often go unnoticed, I know this is possible and I am committed to seeing it happen! In fact, I would love to see a global competition for this… I think we will start that in 2018… consider this the launch!

I believe that the most successful cities in the future will shine because they can successfully articulate and embed the values of their citizens in all corners of the city and through all points of citizen engagement – whether with government, businesses, schools and other organizations, or just at the ice rink.

Ottawa, like many cities, is growing quickly, and it is important to ensure we have some creative and values-based and collaborative discussions and activities, championed by local leaders and citizens from all walks of life, on an ongoing basis.

Everyone has a voice, every voice is important, and every voice deserves to be valued and heard – that happens in #MyOttawa in the future.

Raymond Murray

Raymond Murray began playing music at the age of three, and hasn’t stopped since. Now a successful lawyer with Nelligan O’Brien Payne LLP, Raymond is also a performer – his band Souljazz Orchestra has released 8 albums, three of which have been nominated for Junos  – and a musical mentor through Orkidstra, a program which provides kids from low-income families in Ottawa with free music lessons.

Raymond believes that music can help to build better, stronger communities – creating environments in which young people work together with respect, discipline and creativity to achieve their goals, building their self confidence as they learn new musical skills. For his commitment to supporting kids who might never otherwise have had the chance to make music a meaningful part of their lives, Raymond Murray is one of #150GreatPeople in Ottawa, and he answers the questionnaire here:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

My children were born in Ottawa and I have had the pleasure of watching them and the City grow together over the last 15 years. My children are bilingual in French and English. They go to school with other children who came here from all over the world. Their classmates come from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds and includes refugees from places such as Somalia.

Beyond my children, I am excited by the growth in the music scene in Ottawa. I started playing souljazz, reggae, afro and funk in Ottawa in 2001. At that time, there were few other artists embracing alternative, underground and modern styles of music and even fewer venues willing to support us. Flash forward to today and there are excellent acts, artists, community programs, and centres supporting the Ottawa music scene.

I have watched as this City embraced multiculturalism and as it became more cosmopolitan while maintaining its small-city and community feel. I think this is one of Ottawa’s biggest strengths. I cannot wait to see how our music scene continues to grow and evolve as we welcome people here from all over the world.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

Ottawa feels like a real living and breathing community. Many of us work hard, but lifestyle is also important to us. For myself, I want to show my kids that it is important to work hard at your job, but it is also important to be there for your family and the people you love as well. Ottawa is also a place that prides itself on being outside and enjoying nature. It is great to be so close to incredible parks and have sports programs for people of all ages and levels. I am also pleasantly surprised all the time to see the level of philanthropy in the community, even with the kids.

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

As a lawyer and musician, it is important to me that I provide legal education to the community in my areas of experience, namely in estate and entertainment law. In both areas, it is important that I am approachable to people. Most people do not need a lawyer when they are in a good spot in life; they need a lawyer when something has gone wrong – sometimes very wrong. I try to accessible. It can be intimidating and confusing to speak with a lawyer, and we are not always the best communicators. I try to spend time in the community breaking down common legal issues. I want to help Ottawans feel confidence in the legal system again. I want the people in my community to know they can come to me if something has gone wrong in their life. I want them to feel I will do everything I can to maintain and protect their rights.

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

In terms of my volunteer work, my great love is for OrKidstra, which is a social development music program for children aged 5 to 18 living in under-serviced areas of Ottawa. OrKidstra combined two of my greatest passions, social development and music. I am a board member and am very proud of all that the OrKidstra organization has done to promote and provide music to children. I love that Ottawa has given me the opportunity to be part of an organization like this.

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

I hope that Ottawa keeps its small town feel as it grows. It is important that Ottawa continues to be a community that supports its peoples and identity. We have great talent, diversity, community and business here. With all the positives, I cannot wait to see what we accomplish.

Jim & Shana Perkins

 

Our 14th Anniversary!

Jim & Shana Perkins make Ottawa a better, more inclusive place every single day. As the founders of the Capital City Condors, they offer over one hundred Ottawa area kids with developmental disabilities the opportunity to play hockey in a safe, supportive environment tailored to their needs.

Jim and Shana started the Capital City Condors from scratch, and have steadily grown it over the past ten years, providing a sense of joy and belonging not just to the children who might never otherwise have had the opportunity to be part of a team, but to their proud families as well. Jim and Shana are not just kind and generous human beings, they are the type of people who form the building blocks of a great community, and for that they are truly two of #150GreatPeople in Ottawa. Here, they answer the questionnaire:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

Ottawa is a place of new beginnings for us. We were married here, started our family here, and have called it home for over 20 years now. But the thing that always makes a place most special is the people! We’ve been blessed to meet the most incredible people here in Ottawa, people who have become like family to us, and have literally shaped and deepened our lives.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

Again, we’d have to say it comes down to people and relationships. We love the little street we live on, and are thankful for great and friendly neighbours. We love living in Canada’s Capital City, a place that has much to offer, but isn’t so huge that you lose the closeness of tight-knit community. We love that many here have tremendously generous natures, and really do care about making this an even better place to live. The opportunities to meet with heart and soul genuine people, to consider all that we have to be grateful for, and then to see that gratitude turned into generosity, we love those moments.

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

We’re beyond thankful that so many families in the Special Needs Community have welcomed us into their incredible lives, and enabled us to learn and grow with them, sharing in their triumphs and struggles. They’ve blessed us with their amazing kids! We can’t begin to describe the perspective they have each brought to our lives and to our own family. We get to work each day with perhaps the greatest group of heroes in this city, people who brighten up every day, and bring out something good in all the rest of us. We love seeing these kids who face significant challenges, be over-comers, defying the odds, and experiencing things they were told would never be a part of their lives. We love seeing the smiles on their faces, not to mention the smiles they bring to all the rest of us!

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

Wow, that’s a hard one. We were thrilled to host the Special Hockey International Tournament here in Ottawa in 2015, which saw over 1600 special athletes from across Canada, from New Jersey to California, and even from London, England, spend 5 fun-filled days together playing hockey and making new friends. That was amazing for sure. But maybe more meaningful are those moments we get to share with a player as he or she sees their first hockey jersey with their name on the back, and their favourite number, and then to hear how proud they were to wear it to school on jersey day, just like all the other kids. Maybe it’s that moment standing beside a Mom who chokes up a bit as she watches her child out on the ice, and says, “I never thought I’d get to be a hockey Mom.” Maybe it’s those moments when a young person on the ice moves their legs and begins to propel themselves forward, something the doctors said they’d never do. Or maybe it’s the hug you get from a player who just a few months earlier couldn’t make eye contact with you, but now wraps you up in a squeeze. Maybe it’s seeing student volunteers giving their time every week, smiling as they leave the rink, talking about how these kids are changing their lives. Maybe it’s seeing an NHL player and his young family embrace these amazing kids and their families, and thank them for shaping his life. Or maybe it’s the size of the smiles, or the frequent “I love you’s”. These don’t really have anything to do with us accomplishing anything, it’s about being blessed enough, to be close enough to those we’re really most proud of.

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

We hope and believe that Ottawa will continue to be a city that prioritizes the well-being of those with special needs. The support we have witnessed here has been remarkable, and has become a benchmark we proudly reference when speaking with those in other cities who are considering starting up programs similar to the Condors. We deeply appreciate the support from the city, and how they understand that what happens in a special community like this is so much #biggerthanhockey – it’s about people’s lives being encouraged and enriched.
Ottawa is a great city – a fun city – and a fantastic place to call home!

The Bearded Cop

The Bearded Cop is an actual human being – his name is Jon Hall, and he’s an 11 year veteran of the Ottawa Police Service – but the moniker serves a purpose. It’s what he calls his blog and his twitter feed, and It’s allowed The Bearded Cop to have a voice he might not otherwise have had, one that lets him talk about the effects of his PTSD, to discuss mental health issues and stigma in the community, and to do so in an independent and authentic way.

The Bearded cop is hoping to provoke a conversation and to get people to think about the words they use, and the effects those words have on the world and workplaces around them. He feels we all have a role to play in bringing the issue of mental health into the light, that if anything is going to change, it has to be a community effort. The Bearded Cop is 1 of #150GreatPeople in Ottawa, and here he answers the questionnaire:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

Ottawa is special to me because it is my home. It is where my childhood memories were created. It is where my friendships were made. It is where I’ve experienced life, love, failures, successes; it is part of who I am.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

I love being part of Ottawa’s past, present and future. I am not only part of what Ottawa used to be but have the opportunity to be part of what Ottawa can become.

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

In life, style is more important than status. In other words, it doesn’t matter WHAT you do in life, what matters is HOW you do it. Our “job” as humans, should be the welfare of humankind. It’s important to take ownership of our communities and effect positive change where possible.

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

Truly, I feel grateful if I can end the day leaving the world 10% better than what it was yesterday. My pride doesn’t come from any big singular achievement. It comes from the little accomplishments inside and outside of policing; such as putting a smile on someone’s face, changing a perspective, breaking down barriers & stereotypes, invoking critical thinking or creating meaningful dialogue.

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

I hope for Ottawa to never stop growing. When I speak of growth, I mean growth within our communities. Growth doesn’t happen without obstacles and hardships but we become stronger and more resilient as a society when we achieve positive growth.

John Bradley

John Bradley and his family have been part of the lives of Ottawa-area residents since 1898. The owners of J.T. Bradley’s Country Convenience Store in Navan, they are both a store and a local hub – a place where generations of people have shopped, talked and gotten caught up on the comings and goings of their growing community.

John and his store support numerous local causes, but his long-term commitment is to the growing need for access to palliative care, currently serving as Director and former Chair of the OutCare Foundation – an organization that raises awareness and funds for palliative care services in the Ottawa region. For his dedication to the health of his community – particularly those at a vulnerable time in their lives -John Bradley is one of #150GreatPeople. Here, he answers the questionnaire:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

I was born and raised in Ottawa, Navan to be more specific. Ottawa, being the capital, is special as it has a significance Nationally but at the same time still has a small town feel.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

Living and working in rural Ottawa ie. Navan has afforded me the best of both worlds; growing up in a small town but just 20 minutes from downtown Ottawa. The people of Ottawa are what I love most as we are a dynamic, bilingual, cultural, progressive Community. Owning a store that has been around since 1898 has allowed me to meet and get to know so many interesting people.

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

Owning and operating J.T Bradley’s Store comes with much responsibility as the Community looks to us as a hub, as the go to for anything and everything important to the town and in turn the people who live here support the Store consistently throughout the years.

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

My Community and more specifically my Charitable work has been with OutCare Foundation; supporting Palliative Care Service providers in Eastern Ontario. With the support of Ottawa and the surrounding area the Foundation has become an important fundraiser for the various Palliative Stakeholders raising hundreds of thousands hosting Golf Tournaments, Gala Black Tie Bingos, etc. I am most proud of OutCare’s profile in the Community; it has grown to the point where people look to the Foundation for leadership when it comes to the issue of Palliative Care access in Ottawa.

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

I do hope that Ottawa continues to grow into a world class Capital, and while doing this, the people of this Community remain compassionate, generous and thoughtful.

Gay Cook

Gay Cook has the perfect name for the profession she chose, because she has helped generations of Ottawa residents learn how to… cook. A food writer for the Ottawa Sun and Ottawa Citizen for almost 25 years, and author of Mrs. Cook’s Kitchen, Gay is committed to ensuring that people understand the value of good, wholesome food and its place in a healthy community.

To that end, she and her family have raised thousands of dollars for various charities through events hosted at their iconic historical residence, Fuller House, near the Civic Campus of the Ottawa Hospital, and Gay turned her 85th birthday party into a fundraiser to build the Gay Cook Bakery at Algonquin College. For her dedication to building a better Ottawa, one good meal at a time, Gay Cook is one of #150GreatPeople. Here, she answers the questionnaire:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

Ottawa is a small big city which offers exciting physical and intellectual choices but hasn’t taken away the feel of an intimate and historic city from the river that flows thru the heart of our city and government, the breath-taking Gatineau Hills, the canal bringing us healthy choices from skating to canoeing right in the heart of the national business of Parliament.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

The door is always open at our city hall and to the national laws made in Parliament. The canal and the 3 rivers (The Ottawa, The Rideau and the Gatineau Rivers) that merge here with boating and the Gatineau Hills that gives us a beauty in the autumn, skiiing in the winter and a peacefulness that no other city offers across Canada.

The work that you do helps to make a better place – why is this important to you?

Having written about food in the Ottawa Sun and The Citizen and above all it gave me the opportunity to write real people’s stories behind those who produced the food and food products in Ottawa and area.

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

My proudest volunteer job has been to serve on the board for at least 10 years of Debra Dynes Community House.

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

That we never forget our heritage and appreciate the physical beauty of Ottawa and area.

Marsha Wilson

Marsha Wilson has been helping vulnerable women in Ottawa for over twenty five years. As Director of St. Joe’s Women’s Centre, Marsha has played a key role in welcoming countless homeless women into a community environment that provides them with a sense of safety and care.

On the practical side, Marsha helps advocate for the needs of these women, requests donations of toiletries or other basic items, and ensures that they have access to proper food. On the personal side, Marsha provides moral support, mentoring and advice that can help the women of St. Joe’s positively change the paths of their lives. For her commitment to women at a difficult – and even desperate – time in their lives, and for her belief in their abilities and potential, Marsha Wilson is one of #150GreatPeople in Ottawa. Here, she answers the questionnaire:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

We moved from the Maritimes forty-nine years ago, and even though I call Ottawa my home, I’ll always be a Maritimer. At a ball-game I met my former husband who’s been my best friend and mentor. #Canada150 created a sense of how proud I am to say I live in our National Capital, and awed at the celebrations that were inclusive for all. Our community believes in the importance of social responsibility, and for this I’m grateful.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

I love the landscape of our Capital City, our diverse culture, and all that Ottawa has to offer; from skating or boating on the Canal, culture programs and foremost a city that promotes diversity and inclusion, one which I am proud to call home.

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

For the past twenty-six years, I’ve been blessed to hold the position as Director of St. Joe’s Women’s Centre. St. Joe’s is one of many non-governmental social service agencies which work with some of the most vulnerable people within our city. I truly believe our mission has enriched the lives of women who are homeless and/or at risk of being homeless, women from all faiths, cultures, ethnicities and sexual orientation. Women who refer to St. Joe’s as a “Home Way from Home.

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

My parents taught us at an early age the importance of being involved within your community. Mom was always volunteering in our small community of Hartland NB, sending off boxes of clothing to those in need, or offering a meal and bed for the night. Giving back to my community has been rewarding in more ways then one. I’ve volunteered in different capacities, from helping the disabled with swimming classes, to working on fund-raising events, and being a member of agency Boards of Directors. Each undertaking enriched my life more then I could imagine.

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

That our city will continue to grow in cultural diversity and acceptance, and for our community to be more conscious of the challenges faced by those who walk the streets of Ottawa.

Adrian Harewood

Adrian Harewood is best known as the respected co-host of CBC Ottawa News at 6 and host of weekend current affairs show Our Ottawa.  Through his TV career, Adrian keeps city residents up to date on what’s happening in their region and around the world. But his passion for Ottawa does not end when the cameras turn off.

Adrian consistently lends his personal time and energy to multiple charitable organizations throughout the city – helping them to spread their message and increase the impact of their events through his presence.  Adrian Harewood he is one of #150GreatPeople in Ottawa, and he answers the questionnaire here:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

Ottawa is special because it is where my West Indian immigrant parents settled in the 60s. It’s where my sisters and I were born in the 70s and 80s. Ottawa is where I attended elementary and secondary school and forged lifelong friendships. It’s where I had my first kiss ( I was 6). Ottawa is where my kids were born and are being raised. Ottawa is special because it is where I have roots. Ottawa is where I call home.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

What I love most about living and working in Ottawa is that while it still has the feel and sensibility of a small town it has big city amenities, attractions and ambitions.

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

I have always wanted to make a positive contribution to my community, because this community has given so much to me. There is nothing better, nothing more rewarding or affirming than feeling useful and being of service to others.

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

I am proud of how generous and caring our community is. Those characteristics are always on display whenever we are trying to raise money for good causes.

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

I hope that Ottawa can become a place where everyone has a seat at the table, and where people will take the risk of going beyond the invisible lines that too often divide us.

Noémie Pound

Noémie Pound is living proof that, no matter what your age, you can make a difference in your community. Noémie is 11 years old, in grade 6, and has already raised over $30,000 for CHEO through Happy Hearts – a charity fashion show and silent auction that she created at the age of eight.

From finding sponsors and an event venue, to recruiting her friends and other youth to volunteer their time, Noémie took charge and got things done, because she doesn’t like to stand around and wait when there are people in her city who need help. For her sense of purpose and generosity, and for the fact that she sees a way to make a difference and goes after it with all her heart, Noémie Pound is one of #150GreatPeople in Ottawa. Here, she answers the questionnaire:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

Overall, I think I would go for spirit. There are constantly so many great festivals going on and you never run out of things to go do.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

I still think that all the festivals here are awesome, but what is also cool is that in summer, it’s like if you were in the south with the ice cream and the sunburns, and in the winter you feel… Well… Right at home with the snow forts, the sledding, and the tip of your nose frosting! Also, everyone is always so friendly and kind!

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

This is so important to me because I know that some people are just not as lucky as we are and we cannot just stand here, waiting till later to help. It is just so important to me to make a difference, change people’s lives for the better and to give back to this amazing community.

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

Honestly, I am really proud of Happy Hearts, a fashion show and silent auction which raised, in total, over $30,000, all of which went directly to the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, that I put together with the help of family, friends, so many volunteers, and even patients from CHEO who, just like me, wanted to give back and help make a difference!

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

I hope that everyone will trust that no matter your age, size, or origin, you are never too out of place to take action in your community, and to create a better world for each and every one of us!

Tracey Clark

Tracey Clark is committed to helping build a strong, diverse Ottawa community – and to making sure that everyone in the city can get a truly great cup of fair-trade coffee. Tracey, the Founder and CEO of Bridgehead Coffee, has created a business that employs hundreds of Ottawa residents and is a go-to place for caffeine lovers across the city.

Tracey supports Ottawa-region farmers too, because Bridgehead is committed to providing healthy, nutritious and local food in all of its locations, and now celebrates its Ottawa roots with a series of locally branded coffees reflecting the city’s vibrant past. But her business goes further than that, also supporting the international farmers from whom Bridgehead buys its coffee beans – helping to improve the way of life for people around the world. For her belief in fairness and equity both here at home and across the globe, Tracey Clark is one of #150GreatPeople, and here she answers the questionnaire:

What makes Ottawa special to you?

I love that Ottawa is at the confluence of three rivers, and all of the great outdoor space we have around those waterways. I also love the unique feel of all of our neighbourhoods.

What do you love most about living and working in Ottawa?

Being able to get around by bicycle or even on foot. I also love that the city still feels like a village. It’s often said ‘it’s a small town’ – it’s not—but it has a vibrant community where people help each other out.

The work that you do helps to make Ottawa a better place – why is this important to you?

I think it is a role of every business to be a part of the community, and to make ‘community’ better.

You give back to the Ottawa community in various ways – is there one Ottawa-related achievement of which you are most proud?

Being able to place a Bridgehead in nearly all of the old City of Ottawa neighbourhoods and having them become valued community assets.

What do you hope for Ottawa in the future?

Continued growth and densification, growth of diverse private-sector businesses based in Ottawa — this enriches the diversity and dynamism of the City. I also often wonder if Ottawa and the Outaouias could ever be combined into a National Capital District.