Breaking through barriers; gaining success.
Let’s talk business, leadership, wellness and relationship building.

Establishing a Dialogue with Black Women is a BBPA’s International Women’s Month event. The dialogue aims to discuss and raise awareness of many issues that are both local and global, and which affect Black women daily.

Despite many advances in Women’s Empowerment this century, there are many unresolved issues that interfere with progress women seek in order to reach their full potential. Let’s address the following:  Bridging the Gender Gap: Sexism, gender bias, and equal pay. Achieving Gender Parity:  Invest in and improvement of educational opportunities for women: Gaining access to jobs in all fields.  Women’s Empowerment: Fostering women’s sense of worth by accessing resources, providing information on career pathways, and leadership opportunities.

Program Schedule

8:00 am – 9:00 am

Registration and Networking Breakfast

Nadine Spencer

9:00 am – 9:15 am

Welcome Remarks – Nadine Spencer
Your Host | Black Business and Professional Association (BBPA)

A Dialogue with Black Women: Why Our Voice Matters

9:15 am – 9:30

Opening Remarks – Mitzie Hunter
MPP | Scarborough Guildwood

Breaking through the Barriers to success. The Future for Black Women and our Voice

Shai-Ann James

9:30 am – 9:50 am

Core Mental Health: The Foundation to Well Being Success

Speaker – Shai-Ann James
Child and Youth Worker

Uncovering the importance of taking care of your mental health to ensure you achieve your goals.

9:55 am – 10:15 am

Wellness at Home
Speaker – Devonia Debeck
The Debeck Group | Principal Interior Decorator

Peace of mind at home. Free to relax, be inspired and dream.

Colleen Ward

10:15 am – 10:45 am

Technology, Don’t Get Left Behind

Speaker – Colleen Ward
Vice President Technology Solutions | TD Bank

10:45 am – 11:00 am

BREAK – Sponsored by:

Ettie Rutherford

11:00 am – 11:30 am

NO is a sentence – Saying NO without guilt

Speaker – Ettie Rutherford
Author, Educator | Women Are Worthy

Danielle Spencer

11:30 am – 11:45 pm

Building the Business of “You”- The Millennial Entrepreneur
Danielle Spencer | CEO, LaidLashes

A discussion of building a relationship with yourself, and how it will affect your business and your brand.


Health and wellness benefits associated with an active lifestyle.

12:00 pm – 12:30 pm

Networking Lunch – Sponsored by:

Sandra Whiting

12:30 pm – 12:45 pm

How the Obama method of engagement works with effective storytelling

Sharing My Story – Sandra Whiting
Storyteller | How I got involved in community affairs and volunteering

Thando Hyman

12:45 pm – 1:45 pm

A Dialogue with……Moderated by Thando Hyman

Thando Hyman’s dynamic leadership and innovative school practices has been recognized by community, national and international media.

Ms. Hyman’s extensive community work includes host of “AWAF Roundtable” on 89.5 CIUT FM radio, founding board member of the African-Canadian Legal Clinic and past chair of African Heritage Educators Network and Black Coalition for AIDS Prevention. She is a Board member of TVOntario.

Thando leads a panel discussion on various issues and barriers to success Black women face.


  • TKA Pinnock
    TKA Pinnock
    Faculty of Education, York University
  • Sharon Fletcher
    Sharon Fletcher
    Co-Founder, Blacks Inspire
  • Adoma Patterson
    Adoma Patterson
    President, Jamaica Canadian Assocition

Elizabeth Dori Tunstall

1:45 pm – 2:00 pm

Elizabeth Dori Tunstall

Dean of Design at Ontario College of Art and Design University

Elayna Paulk

2:00 pm – 2:15 pm

What’s Next? Getting Our Voices Heard – Elayna Paulk

CEO of Melanin Queen’s Organics | Host/Executive Producer of The Queen Series Podcast

Podcasting with Purpose: The importance of creating platforms for marginalized voices to encourage sisterhood and build community support.

Jill Andrew

2:15 pm – 2:30 pm

Jills Last Word
Jill Andrew | MPP, St. Paul’s


LOCATION: BBPA – 180 Elm Street
DATE: Saturday March 30, 2019
TIME: 9:00 am -2:30 pm

Thank you to our Partners

Swag & Door Prizes

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