Douglas Weekly – October 30th

Douglas Weekly - Oct 30th
17th annual State of the Island Economic Summit, organized by The Vancouver Island Economic Alliance, in Nanaimo. Photo By: Will Gillis.


17th Annual State Of The Island Economic Summit
VIEA’s latest conference — a fast-paced two days focused on collaboration and sustainability.

Last week, the Vancouver Island Conference Centre in Nanaimo buzzed with excitement as politicians, entrepreneurs, investors and business owners gathered for VIEA’s annual economic summit. 

The event’s main draw was a slate of seminars ranging from circular economics to Indigenous partnerships to the future of Island farming. Niche discussions included emergency management, artificial intelligence and the business of psilocybin production.

An event highlight, VIEA’s Senior Economist Susan Mowbray presented the latest “State of the Island Report,” which includes key sector analysis, macroeconomic indicators and labour and housing statistics.

Throughout the conference, two themes emerged: collaboration — particularly with Indigenous groups — and sustainability. Keynote speakers Ken Kotes — Chair of the Indigenous Governance program at Yukon University — and premier David Eby reflected on these themes, noting that governments, businesses and Indigenous groups need to work together to address climate change and sky-high housing prices, and pounce on opportunities for growth.

Above all, the VIEA conference highlighted the passion Islanders have for making their home a better, more prosperous place to live.

Read the latest State of the Island report here, and keep an eye on VIEA’s website for updates about next year’s summit.


DEYA Honours Bobbie Racette
Victoria’s business community gathered at VCC for an evening of celebration and inspiration.

On October 17, just as it has every year for the past two decades, Victoria’s business community arrived for the 2023 Distinguished Entrepreneur of the Year Award dressed in its formal best. But, as more than one guest pointed out, there was a significant difference this year: The crowd comprised more women, more people of colour, more young people and more LGTQ+ people than it had in the past, a welcome sign of representation in this dynamic city.

Douglas magazine was on hand as well, joining in the celebration of the 2023 Distinguished Entrepreneur of the Year, Bobbie Racette, founder and CEO of Virtual Gurus. She is herself Indigenous, queer and inspiringly young for someone so successful. The first Indigenous recipient of the award and one of only a handful of women, she joins an illustrious lineup of previous winners including music producer David Foster, Lululemon founder Chip Wilson and Encana CEO Gwyn Morgan.

Read the full article here.


October 31: Navigating Volatility

November 1-2: Zero Waste Conference    
November 1-4: International Garden Tourism Conference
November 4: Colourful Business
November 7-10: Canadian Association of Graduate Studies Conference
November 9: Ecostar Awards
November 9: Emerge Connector
November 9-10:  BCalm Mindfulness Conference
November 14-15: UPLIFT Women’s Business Summit
November 16: Navigating Business Volatility Roundtable Discussion
November 21: Prosperity Roundtable Lunch
November 23: Saanich Chamber Mixer
November 28: Hope in the City Luncheon
November 29: Wisdom for Family Enterprises
November 30: VIATEC Community Awards
November 30: Greater Victoria Business Banquet

January 21-24: Impact Sustainability Travel and Tourism Summit 

March 6-8: South Island Prosperity Partnership Rising Economy Conference