Dear Calgary: Letters to the Next Generation of Leaders book

To celebrate our 125th anniversary, in June the Calgary Chamber released Dear Calgary: Letters to the Next Generation of Leaders.   

Leaders in the book represent a diverse cross-section of Calgary’s leadership treasure trove – from the past and present, from diverse areas of business, art, science, sport, politics, community and everything in between. All have accomplished so much in their lives, and all have helped make Calgary a great city. 

This book is filled with amazing insight on hard work, innovation, treating people well, handling adversity, being humble, collaborating and getting stuff done. 

Included in Dear Calgary are letters from: 

Hayley Wickenheiser, four-time Olympic gold medalist
Lois Mitchell, Lieutenant Governor of Alberta
Paul Brandt, nine-time Juno Award winning country music artist
Naheed Nenshi, Mayor of Calgary
W. Brett Wilson, entrepreneur and philanthropist

Over 4,000 copies of the book were distributed last year, with over 1500 copies of the book given to the 2016 graduating students at every major post-secondary business school in the city.  

The book can be purchased at Indigospirit TD Square, Chapters Chinook or online at


The world has changed, and will continue to change at a breathtaking pace. The Chamber believes that for companies to capitalize on the changes of the new economy, Calgary businesses need to focus on three areas, innovation, productivity and entering new marketing. To provide companies with the tools and resources to do this, and to support Calgary businesses during and after the downturn, in 2015 the Calgary Chamber embarked on a new multi-year initiative which includes programming, ideas, events and advocacy called Onward. The Onward initiative was developed to challenge and inspire Calgary’s business community to think differently, and empower businesses to come together to build the next chapter in Calgary’s history. 

There are three main components to the Onward initiative: 
There are valuable lessons from those who have been through challenging times before

The Onward speaker series that includes the Onward conference, brings in some of the world’s top business minds to inspire and challenge the way entrepreneurs view the world. 

Helping entrepreneurs chart a new course

To help business owners connect with the tools, resources and knowledge needed to thrive these challenging economic times, the Chamber developed new programming such as our Innovation and Trade Accelerator programs. 

Shaping a new future for Calgary
Through public policy, research and mentorship, the Chamber is dedicated to working with members and all levels of government to bring about the changes and conditions needed to enable businesses to thrive. 

In an era of disruptive and global changes, companies need to be creative and adaptable to succeed in order to not be left behind. Nowhere is this truer than in Calgary, where the market has fundamentally changes in recent years, companies are now working hard to retrofit themselves to be successful in this new reality. 

As part of the Onward initiative, the Chamber developed its new program, Ignite. The program is designed to help growth-focused businesses accelerate their growth and outpace their completion through rapid innovation. 

A two-pronged approach, Ignite provides Chamber members with both practical outcomes and learning opportunities that support their growth and innovation initiatives. Ignite has two streams, the Innovation Primer Workshop Series to help companies develop new and innovative ideas for products and services, and the Innovation Accelerator Program to help companies that already have an innovative product or service idea, and want to sprint it to be market-ready in 90 days.

programming to help grow your business

The Chamber is for businesses that want to grow, and Chamber members grow faster. Whether it is our CEO Peer Mentoring program, our inspiring Fast-Growth Champion series, our full day entrepreneurial conference and the only one of its kind in the city, Rev, or Small Business Week – a weeklong event celebrating our city’s greatest entrepreneCurs – these programs are meant to help grow your leadership skills, build business relationships and connect you to the resources you need to grow your business. 
You will come away from these events thinking differently , and with the tools your company needs to be more innovative and productive. Most importantly, they will inspire you and leave you with fresh ideas for making your business the very best it can be. 

Are you ready to start growing your business fast?  

CEO Peer Mentoring

In a confidential environment, draw into the expertise that only other entrepreneurs would have. Tap into a group of of 8-12 leading entrepreneurs who can offer you direction based on experience, allowing you to form your own conclusions on how to solve problems and leverage opportunities. 

Fast-Growth Champions 

Dedicated to supporting growing entrepreneurial businesses in our city, and often held over a burger and a drink, these fun, laid- back events feature a wealth of knowledge, candid stories and an honest look at what it takes to run a hyper-growth business. Frequently displaying the human side of business, this series seeks to inspire, inform and ignite all facets of the entrepreneurial spirit. 

Rev is Calgary’s only conference totally dedicated to helping entrepreneurs grow. This one-day power conference is attended by 300 of Calgary’s fastest-growing companies, and will help you take your business to the next level. A jam-packed day of innovation and inspiration, Rev is filled with the fresh ideas, hands-on tools and real business connections to help you grow. Fast. 

Rev will sure to be the best day you spend on your business. Join us for this year’s conference on May 11th at the Calgary Zoo. 


Our flagship event – the Small Business Week Calgary is not a couple of hours, nit a day, but an entire week dedicated to recognizing the many contributions small businesses make to our local economy. Small Business Week Calgary includes workshops, panels, networking events and awards show and Canada’s largest Small Business Conference. The 2016 Small Business Week Conference was the largest event across the country with 1,593 attendees.