The region’s biggest technology festival, YQG Tech Week, will reunite some of the Windsor-born tech stars in their former hometowns along with the future for the second straight year in virtual form on Monday.
Featured speakers this year include Deloitte’s Duncan Stewart on future trends, Spellbound founder and former Windsor resident Christina York on Women in Tech, and one of Canada’s most successful founders, Anthony Di Iorio (Ethereum, Decentral) , which are increasing your business.
In addition, other speakers with field connections, Joel Paglione (Founder of Pix, Oakbottle), Jenny Do Forno (OMERS Ventures), Matt Lucid (Rap Book), and Jason Sams (Rocket Innovation Studio) will headline Homecoming Day.
To participate or register for more information: https://www.wetech-alliance.com/techweekyqg.
“Tech Week is a celebration of technology, innovation and entrepreneurship,” said Yvonne Pilon, President and CEO of WEtech Alliance, who was named one of Canada’s Emerging Tech Leaders in 2022 by trade publication The Peak.
“It has become an on-ramp in technology for the community. We need an opportunity for individuals to collide with established talent and companies. This is what this week offers.”
In addition to the days focused on the future, the Women in Tech, Founders and Windsor Natives who have succeeded, Thursday is dedicated to Tech Mobility, while Fridays and Saturdays feature Tech Talent in the Mobility Hackathon.
This year’s 22 technical awards will be announced throughout the week.
Pilon said Homecoming Day is particularly important to the community, given the influx of students and the talent being produced at Windsor’s two post-secondary institutions.
“This is an opportunity for us to shine and show off,” said Pilon, adding that Windsor’s new chief administrative officer, Jason Reynar, also received an introduction to the area as part of a Tech Week before the city was hired.
“We want our alumni to see what’s happening in their hometowns, maybe come back – but be here to help grow our tech community. We want to make those connections, but also to sell our story and Want to tell too.”
This year’s alumni have a diverse background.
Paglione is the founder of OakBottle, a miniature oak-aged form for the drink, and the pickup app. The Pix App is one of America’s top online spirits and wine retailers and crowd review communities.
Do Forno is the head of talent recruitment for the giant pension fund company OMERS.
Sams is a newcomer to Windsor and has overseen the company’s rapid growth as Vice President of Rocket Innovation Studios, while Senior Product Manager at Wrap Book, a fintech (financial technology) startup in Ridgetown’s Lucid entertainment area.
“Rocket Innovation is one of the most important companies to come into this community,” Pilon said.
“They are a fast growing fintech company with such a strong culture. We need companies like this so that our graduates have a reason to live in the city.”
For many local firms now engaged in mobility, Thursday’s Mobility Day will offer a glimpse into the future of Detroit’s growing Michigan Central Mobility District, anchored by the iconic Michigan Central Station.
Victoria Prouse, transportation planning chief for the district, will outline plans for Michigan Central that includes founding members Ford Motor Company and Google.