On Wednesday, October 24, 2018, Tandempark was presented with two of the inaugural Mayor’s Innovation Awards at Xcelerate Summit in Barrie, Ontario. Founder and CEO, Liam Squires was called forward by Barrie’s Mayor Jeff Lehman, to receive the Startup Innovation Award and the Innovative Social Enterprise Award. These awards were among five commissioned by Mayor Lehman in recognition of the forward thinking businesses that start, grow, and continue to thrive in Barrie.

In total, 93 nominations were submitted for the five award categories, giving the judges the impossible task of selecting one for each category.

Innovative Automation was selected as Innovative Business, while Georgian College was chosen as Innovative Institution. Robert Tigwell (Tandempark COO, LinkGreen CTO, and Owner/Operator of Gateway Software Solutions) was presented with the Shift Disturber Award, in recognition for the work he has done to enable companies like Tandempark to be innovative change makers in the community.

Honourable mentions for each category were:

We’re changing the way people change the world.

Since the idea first came together, Tandempark has come a long way. From a talk across a kitchen table to a team of five, Tandempark has grown into an infrastructure solution for communities. “This has gone well beyond connecting volunteers and organizations. Our platform is changing the way we change the world because we are looking at the challenges that surround volunteerism through a different lens. We see them as interconnected and dependent on each other. Respecting that crucial aspect of the volunteer landscape is what makes all the difference.”

So what do these awards mean to Tandempark?

Being recognized as an innovator in our community is a tremendous honour but it’s also a warning. The road less travelled is avoided for valid reasons and those are typically the embarrassing, uncomfortable, or downright painful times an innovator has to endure. Our journey so far has been full of our share of bumps and detours along the way and we consider that a side effect of doing something truly new.

For us, these awards validate the obstacles we’ve faced to date, but also serve as fair notice that, if we continue to do things right (and not just how everybody does it), we’re in for a lot more bumps and bruises along the way. But as Canadian Juno nominee musician/songwriter and professional speaker Peter Katz will say, it’s also a reminder that we need to “stay in it”.

So thank you. Thanks to everyone who nominated us, to the judging panels who selected us and to everyone who helped make this awesome event possible:

Live generously,

Liam

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