CF Saskatchewan Blog

Celebrating Success: Saskatchewan’s Anne Calladine wins National Entrepreneurship Award!

  • August 2, 2016
  • Written by Community Futures Saskatchewan
(L - R): NACCA Chair, Lucy Pelletier, Jeff Ward and Anne Calladine (L - R): NACCA Chair, Lucy Pelletier, Jeff Ward and Anne Calladine

Community Futures is very pleased to congratulate Anne Calladine of Northwinds Bus Lines in La Ronge! Anne was recently selected as the National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association’s (NACCA) inaugural Indigenous Female Entrepreneur of the Year. She beat out nine other finalists from across Canada and was presented with the award at a banquet held in Halifax, Nova Scotia on June 22, 2016.

This recognition is a true testimonial to Anne’s significant business acumen, unwavering commitment to her community, and the company’s contributions to Aboriginal economic development. Alongside her husband Jason, in the eight years as owner and operator of Northwinds, Anne has doubled the company’s staff and equipment, while giving back to the community through supporting of number of local causes, including the local food bank and Girl Guides of Canada. Importantly, she has also increased the Aboriginal employees from zero to now accounting for half of the organization’s 25 staff members.

Anne’s entrepreneurial spirit is motivated by a deep commitment to family. She credits her two daughters, loving husband, and extended family as the driving factors behind the company’s ongoing success. Anne says that her mother and grandparents have been important sources of support and inspiration in her life, instilling a strong work ethic, along with a profound respect for the land, her people, and herself. At all times, Anne strives to be a person her family and community can be proud of.

Prior to purchasing Northwinds in 2008, Anne served in the roles of bookkeeper and assistant manager in the company. Her knowledge of accounting and business functions, along with her familiarity of the organization, well prepared her to step into an ownership role. Anne says that she viewed the business purchase as a wonderful opportunity to provide for her immediate and extended family.

Of all the hats that she wears in the operations, Anne says “Bus Driver” is her favourite. She says, “I love to drive bus and interact with the school students! They are all such great kids and never fail to make me smile...even when it is -40 outside!”

According to Anne, Community Futures played an important role in the purchase of Northwinds by assisting with financing. She is thankful to the organization and says that Bill Hogan and Jean Powell of Visions North have been invaluable supporters, providing important advice and endless encouragement all along the way.

When asked what was the best business advice she has ever received, Anne said, “Don't be afraid to make money, that's why you are in business!” In terms of future endeavours, she is looking forward to expanding the company and also has her sights passionately set on another start up in a different industry. Here at Community Futures, we can’t wait to see what Anne gets up to next!