Board of Directors
Chris has many qualifications and experiences that relate to being on the Airdrie Chamber board:
• Bachelor of Commerce Degree with a Major in Marketing
• Member of the Woodside Golf Course team for over 20 years and have served as the General Manager since 2009
• Vice President of the National Golf Course Owners Association - Alberta Chapter
• KidSport Alberta Fund Development Board Member
• Brewster’s Kananaskis Ranch Golf Course Management Company
All the above experiences have helped Chris gain an understanding of what entrepreneurs and business owners need in terms of support in order to be successful in today’s extremely competitive environment. He believes that his business and board experiences have taught him several important lessons about how to ensure that outcomes are delivered to achieve or exceed goals. Chris is a continued asset to the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce and its membership. Chris was drawn to the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce as he believes there is a real opportunity to make some impactful changes that can create added member value and elevate the Chamber’s ability to deliver services to its members. He is excited to help reposition the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce in the minds of its membership and its potential members. Paying your annual Chamber membership fees should be the easiest decision you make all year. That is the kind of value that Chris knows the Chamber is capable of offering.
First Vice President
Ami Ballman is co-founder of RARE Cannabis Co. and an advocate for the cannabis industry. She has 8 years’ experience as a retail marketing specialist helping small businesses connect the dots between lead generation, customer experience and their bottom lines.
It is an absolute honour to be involved with the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce. It allows Ami a unique opportunity to connect and support other local business, and to help advocate on the issues and challenges that matter to them the most. She is excited to be a part of the Chamber’s growth and focusing on delivering long term benefits for the Airdrie business community as whole.
Second Vice President
Shane is a local lawyer and has been practicing family law since 2015. More recently he opened his own boutique law firm – GP Law – in Airdrie in 2019. His experiences as a family law practitioner and business owner have strengthened his ability to problem solve, negotiate, and empathize with people. He has also developed strong oral advocacy and writing skills through these experiences.
Shane grew up in Airdrie and is happy to be reconnected with his hometown. He is committed to giving back to the community by working with the ACC in support of their efforts to improve local business through advocacy, connectedness, and self-governance.
Carmen has worked as an accountant in the public practice sector for 15 years, where she has absorbed an array of knowledge and experience from different types of businesses in various industries. Accounting is so much more than just crunching numbers, it’s an opportunity to help businesses grow, succeed and guide them in the right direction to do so.
Carmen previously volunteered on the executive for the Rotary Club of Airdrie as treasurer for 3.5 years and is currently a member of the Airdrie Agricultural Society. These experiences and her involvement with clients will bring various perspectives to her position as Treasurer of the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce. Prior to her career in accounting, Carmen co-owned a restaurant where she learned a lot about starting a business without any direction and she believes that groups like the Chamber of Commerce are key support networks for business owners. She looks forward to working with the Chamber, and she will embrace the opportunity to learn from other business owners in this community.
Nikki previously worked in HR in oil and gas; she owns Airdrie Puppy Pals Inc. a dog Daycare, Boarding and Training facility in Airdrie.
Nikki continues to be a part of the board and works to help implement positive change in our community. She strives to help others learn from what she has learned in her small business journey – giving back and helping others to know what resources are available to them.
Allison has owned her business in Airdrie for four years and prior to her dream endeavor in retail, she worked with the Calgary Stampede where she contributed to large committee executive roles. Her experience there was largely focused in organizing and hosting meetings, planning, and executing events, maintaining budgets, and providing input toward the overall success of the organization. She brings this experience in her role with the Airdrie Chamber Board of Directors and enjoys providing her insight and knowledge to fellow businesses.
Allison has lived in Airdrie for over 10 years and during this time she has discovered that Airdrie is a great place to live and successfully run a business. Participating on the board for the Chamber allows her to grow as a business owner as well as mentor and to collaborate with other local businesses to foster growth in the community.
Anne has enjoyed the last 15 years of her 30+ years in Technology Sales as Director of Sales for Western Canada with Canon Canada. Working with and supporting 7 wonderfully diverse Sales Teams in Alberta and BC, who are primarily focused on delivering world class solutions for Canons Business Solutions in the B2B sector, is a role she describes as both challenging and rewarding. She welcomes the opportunity to help drive positive results wherever her experience and her professional and personal networks could positively impact programs or projects for our city.
Anne chose Airdrie as home just a little over 3 years ago and has so enjoyed everything Airdrie has to offer. While this decision to move to Airdrie was very much fueled by her travel requirements and the positive impact of being so close to the airport, the amenities Airdrie has to offer as a community made it a great decision overall. Anne feels this opportunity to continue to work closely with the Chamber as a member with Canon and extend that on a personal level will afford her the opportunity to help in some small way the place she chose to call home and give a little back to our community, which has great appeal.
She is excited to help the Chamber in any way to achieve their objectives and support the Chamber’s initiatives that lead to improvements in Airdrie’s business communities’ success and continued growth.
Asif has been associated with the banking sector for a little over 20 years at various senior level positions internationally (Dutch, UK, GCC and Asian Markets) and has also worked as a hard-core hands-on entrepreneur. He has been part of various boards in various capacities such as a general member, President and General Secretary. Currently, he is associated with RBC Bank as a Business Account Manager and by virtue of the nature of his work, he is required to meet with people from all aspects of life on an on-going basis. This includes but is not limited to Business community (Entrepreneurs), Salaried professionals, Retired individuals, stay at home people etc. giving me a greater perspective to build rapport and simultaneously getting first-hand information about the happenings / issues in their dayto-day life.
Asif volunteered in the office with the Airdrie Chamber a few years ago. He believes that members, rather all stake holders need to play a pivotal role to take AC to the next level given it has tremendous opportunity and is poised towards growth. Looking at the bigger picture, he chose to be part of AC due to his diversified back-ground while representing a growing (minority) in Airdrie community and having a multi-lingual back-ground, he is also working with various organizations/institutions (profit and non-profit) and individuals not only in Airdrie but Calgary and Cochrane as well, which enables him to represent Airdrie Chamber of Commerce as an ambassador – specifically due to his primary residence in Airdrie.
In addition, his passion for volunteering enables him to contribute to an organization from strategic planning to sharing success stories, transfer learning and the best practices by virtue of greater understanding and expertise of value-chain and process management, which he has acquired through his professional career spread over a number of years.
Having volunteered on boards in the past, Charlene brings experience in compliance from working with CRA, AGLC, and corporate registries. Her qualifications include professionalism, ethics & integrity. She is an active listener and is very open minded. Her occupation sometimes requires objectivity and to be respectfully obdurate which can be an asset if used correctly.
Commitment and loyalty are two things Charlene values and in turn, she is determined to provide. The Airdrie Chamber is an organization that she values and enjoys continuing to be a part of a diverse representation of the business community.
As Charlene’s kids are much more independent, she finds herself with time to give! She also feels like there is a major shift that the Airdrie Chamber is embarking on and she is excited to be a part of it!
Jay graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons.) degree from the Asper School of Business in Winnipeg, Manitoba with a double major in Small Business Management/Entrepreneurship and Marketing. He worked in retail sales as well as retail banking, financial planning and held both an insurance license and Canadian Securities. He managed a small book of Small Business Banking clients. He created, owned, and operated Mabuhay Calgary (Calgary's first Filipino Community Newspaper. Jay is currently a part owner in the F45 Training Franchise here in Airdrie and has owned and operated NRG Fitness Inc. since 2006.
Joining the chamber board not only fueled Jay’s passion to serve, but to has also enabled him to make a difference in the Airdrie community while networking and building relationships with our local small businesses here in Airdrie. Through those relationships, Jay has and will continue to embrace all the personal learning and development that he can transfer to strengthen his business.
Entrepreneur for 2+ decades, Suze built a community of trained coaches across Canada and the US. In addition, she actively coaches and mentors business owners, organizations and individuals, she is a bestselling author, radio show host, experienced speaker and facilitator. Suze holds a MEd specializing in Curriculum Development and Learning Strategies, has taught for 20 years, was a Learning Process Consultant for 3 years and the Consultant responsible for acquisition of all resources, community outreach and building positive school culture for the building of a new school.
In addition, she is currently the Artistic Director of The Calgary Folk Club (+30 years), an active Board member for 40 years, one of the Founders of The Calgary Folk Festival, Showcase Coordinator for the International Folk Alliance for 11 years, and was a Board Member of the Canadian Folk Music Awards for 5 years. She brings a positive, realistic, and pragmatic approach to all situations with wide experience across business, education, not for profit, and arts communities.
Suze moved to Airdrie in 2018 to contribute to a community and make a positive difference. She welcomes the connections she has made and will continue to make through her involvement in Chamber activities. Suze knows there is an enormous need for organizations, business owners, managers, and teams to refocus and recharge, and she has a unique skill set to support the positive growth moving out of Covid. She understands homebased business and looks forward to actively encouraging membership involvement. She has a great deal of respect and admiration for the Chamber Team. The staff and Board are responsive, personable, knowledgeable and a real asset to Airdrie businesses. She is excited to contribute to the vibrancy and vision the Chamber brings to our community.
Tim has over 19 years in sales and business development. His strong commitment to detail and exceptional customer growth has been the key to his success in business. He is extremely passionate about community and business development. His experience and expertise in business range from retail to travel and hotel management where he now sits in technology and communication sector as a Manager - Community and Service Excellence with Telus Communications. Tim has also over the years worked with local farms, food banks, care facilities and other municipalities, building gardens and playgrounds as he truly has a passion for contributing to his community.
Tim believes firmly in the interests of Airdrie’s business and community. It is an honor to help represent Airdrie and its business and he wants to help be a positive and influential member that helps shape policy and programs that can be a driver in creating meaningful differences in our local business, community, and government. He believes in being an advocate for our city is important to all of us. Tim feels lucky to be a part of this team and family.
Tara has been with the Economic Development department at the City of Airdrie since April 2011. She holds a Diploma in Administrative Information Management from SAIT and has earned her Economic Development Certificate from the University of Waterloo. She is passionate about working with the Airdrie business community and helping entrepreneurs achieve their dreams. Her responsibilities mainly fall within the Business Development core service helping with business retention and expansion along with entrepreneurial support services.
Tara is a born and raised Airdronian with no plans to leave. She enjoys her liaison role with the board, it’s a monthly chance to interact directly with the business leaders in the community and hear directly from them. Open communication between the City and Chamber members is a top priority for Tara.