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Northerners named among Indigenous entrepreneur award winners

Third annual Indigenous Entrepreneur Awards announced on Nov. 9
FIRE 1, founded by Lori Anne Stanger of North Bay, provides training in fire suppression, mitigation and prevention.

Three business owners with Northern Ontario ties have been recognized during the third annual Indigenous Entrepreneur Awards.

Sarain Fox from Batchawana First Nation, Vanessa Génier from Missanabie Cree First Nation, and Lori Anne Stanger from Timiskaming First Nation were among eight recipients selected from across Canada by Pow Wow Pitch, the event host.

The Indigenous Entrepreneur Awards celebrate excellence and outstanding impact in Indigenous entrepreneurship by recognizing eight entrepreneurial leaders for their perseverance, growth, impact and example.

“It is an honour to be celebrating the paths and triumphs of Indigenous entrepreneurs,” Sunshine Tenasco, founder of Pow Wow Pitch, said in a news release.

“Congratulations to this year’s Indigenous Entrepreneur Award recipients. Your entrepreneurial spirit is a testament to resilience and strength to reach new heights. You are lighting the path for future generations to tread with confidence and purpose.”

Sarain Fox, who resides in Barrie, received the Shopify Entrepreneurial Spirit Award.

An activist, entrepreneur and broadcaster, Fox is the founder of Land Back Studios, which produces documentaries and series focused on Indigenous rights and representation.

Vanessa Génier, who is based in Timmins, was presented with the Mastercard Game Changer Award Winner.

Génier non-profit initiative, Quilts for Survivors, has crafted more than 3,000 hand-crafted quilts for survivors of Residential Schools and the Sixties Scoop, serving as a solace to survivors and a platform for Indigenous cultural education.

Lori Anne Stanger, who resides in North Bay, received the Mastercard Game Changer Award Winner.

Stanger's business, FIRE 1, provides education and training in wildfire suppression, mitigation and prevention, in an effort to help communities fight wildfires.

Launched in 2016, Pow Wow Pitch recognizes, promotes, and advocates for Indigenous entrepreneurs across Canada.