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President / Software Development
Tell us about what you do (e.g. work, community involvement, volunteer work, projects)
I have a development background and a passion for finding ways in which technology can make our lives better. I have over 10 years of experience delivering enterprise level software to some of the largest manufacturing companies in the world in a number of roles ranging from data analyst, developer, team lead, pre-sales engineer and product manager. I believe my greatest strength lies in the ability to connect real world requirements with applications that solve everyday challenges.
I have been working on an open social platform to connect skilled people offering services with those that need help. Having just launched recently, anyone in Hamilton can use it now to start offering their services for hire or as a volunteer.
Why did you choose Hamilton?
I grew up in the small town of Cobourg, ON and moved to Hamilton to attend McMaster University for computer science. I joined an amazing group of people when I landed my first job at a Hamilton tech company, at the time named Popware.
Hamilton has been home to me for the past 20 years and feels as much a part of my life as my home town. It also has a great community that wants to help each other out, which I really admire.
In your opinion, what is Hamilton’s biggest opportunity?
I feel Hamilton is on the verge of a bounce back and is full of vibrant, young entrepreneurs. With McMaster being ranked 3rd in Canada and among some of the best Universities in the world, I think the Hamilton community has a lot to offer and we are just beginning the journey. I think the biggest opportunity for Hamilton right now is to hold on to that momentum and take the opportunity to grow on a successful start to a reviving economy.
How does Hamilton HIVE help move Hamilton forward?
I think just by doing what they are now. Continue to connect young, like minded professionals and fuel the passion for creating a better local economy.
How is your work helping to move Hamilton forward?
Gigit hopes to grow fast and with that will come the opportunity to provide more local opportunities to work at a great software company. Adding more tech jobs in Hamilton will hopefully give local talent a place to look and hopefully stay and continue the growth of the Hamilton economy. At the same time, the gigit platform is built with a passion for connecting our communities to make them more efficient and to generate a community that works together. We hope gigit will be a positive boost to the local volunteer community as well as the small and freelance business markets.
What is your advice for YPs looking at Hamilton?
I think especially for those who have a tie to Hamilton, I would say Hamilton is worth it. After growing a software company from 3 to 80 people over the past 10 years in the Hamilton area, I can say it is possible to find your career here. In the past attracting and more importantly, keeping the best talent was difficult. As Toronto spreads and becomes less affordable, we are seeing more and more top talent coming out of our own schools such as McMaster and Waterloo and staying in the area.
What is your favourite place in Hamilton? (e.g. coffee shop, restaurant, shop, natural spot, etc.)
For me I love being around the University. It was an amazing part of my life that will always be close to my heart. Spending time in the coffee shops and around the campus brings back great memories and it’s always fun seeing the changes over the years.
Liz is an adventurer, researcher and social media maven. When she isn’t researching Hamilton’s labour market, she’s fixing up her Victorian home, blogging about personal finance and being a millennial, exploring the world or hiking on the beautiful trails the city has to offer. Liz loves Hamilton and recognizes the businesses and citizens of the city on social media under Shoutouts Hamilton.