2023 Spike award winners

Members of Port Moody Council congratulate 2023 Spike Business Awards winners: (pictured from left to right) Councillor Kyla Knowles, Councillor Callan Morrison, Anita Spiller, Gaetan Royer, Kate Huibers, Aidan Shirley, Carola Thompson, Cezar Salaveria, Mayor Meghan Lahti, Councillor Diana Dilworth, Lisa Beecroft, Deep Sidhu, Brittany Lichty, MP Bonita Zarrillo, Heather Rhodes , Geoff Morrison, Tyler Schuster,  Morgan Benitez.

On November 30, 2023, during B.C. Buy Local Week (November 27 through December 3), the City of Port Moody’s Economic Development and Tourism Committee presented the 2023 Spike Business Awards at a special ceremony in the Inlet Theatre. 

The Spike Business Awards celebrate and recognize the significant contributions of Port Moody’s business community in one of six categories: Arts in Business, Environmental Leadership, Inclusive Excellence, New Business, Business of the Year, and Young Entrepreneur. The awards highlight local organizations that stand out from the crowd.  

“On behalf of Council, I’d like to congratulate the winners of the 2023 Spike Business Awards,” said Mayor Meghan Lahti. “They are all excellent representatives of Port Moody’s business community. We recognize and celebrate their commitment to excellence, innovation, and inclusivity, and their consideration of the arts and the environment in the work they do. We are lucky in Port Moody to have businesses – not just today’s award winners but many more – that provide more than just goods and services. They create jobs, give back to the community, and help to make Port Moody a vibrant and liveable place where everyone is welcome.” 

Here are the winners for 2023: 

Arts in Business – GRIT 

Established in 2020, GRIT is an atypical café that blends coffee, art, and design into one unique, inclusive space. It strives to be a community hub that promotes creativity and diversity, and provides opportunities for established and emerging artists to showcase their art. GRIT’s Cezar Salaveria has been involved in organizing art fairs and markets to promote local artists and artisans in the city and participated in events like the Shuffle (Port Moody Art Walk). These events have helped to raise the profile of art and increase cultural awareness in the community. Salaveria is continuously mentoring and supporting young artists from local schools to nurture the students’ passion to create their own art and make their own contribution to the growth of the arts in Port Moody.

Environmental Leadership – CityState Consulting 

CityState, a boutique community planning and development design firm, is known for its commitment to incorporating innovative and sustainable construction methods into their developments. This includes the use of mass timber, light-coloured roof shingles, rain harvesting barrels, low-flow toilets, solar panels, and community gardens. The people behind CityState actively engage in the preservation of heritage buildings and take a creative approach to tree retention and intensive tree replanting plans. Their efforts have led to the successful relocations of streams, resulting in the establishment of large, revegetated areas, significant increases in wetted areas, and improvements to fish habitats. Managing Partner Carola Thompson is an advocate for the creation of walkable and inclusive urban landscapes that prioritize sustainability and the well-being of those who live and work there. 

Inclusive Excellence – Gabi & Jules Handmade Pies 

Gabi & Jules is a proudly inclusive employer with 35 per cent of the bakery’s team members self-identifying as having a disability. In 2016, when co-owner Lisa Beecroft and her partner and husband Patrick opened their bakery, they made a commitment to create job opportunities for people with autism. Because of their inclusive culture, individuals with other disabilities started to seek out Gabi & Jules as a desirable workplace. The bakery is actively involved in promoting the importance of creating accessible workplaces and is a member of the President's Group, a network of 25 change-driven B.C. business leaders who work with the provincial government to promote inclusivity in the workplace. Beecroft is currently the co-chair of the President's Group and a vocal advocate for creating inclusive employment. 

New Business – Hard Bean Brunch Co. 

The Hard Bean Brunch Co. first opened its doors in April 2022 with Port Moody as their first location. The owners recently opened a new location in Langley and Waterfront is coming in mid-2024. They strive to ensure each guest receives the highest level of customer service and enjoys the highest quality food, drinks, and experience. Heather Rhodes has worked in the hospitality and restaurant industry for more than 20 years and says the inspiration behind The Hard Bean came from her kids always wanting breakfast for dinner. She and her husband didn’t mind these requests, but they didn’t want to go to traditional breakfast restaurants, and many weren’t open for dinner. Rhodes’ vision was to offer a brunch-inspired food and drink menu, in a fun and lively atmosphere.

Business of the Year – Tru Earth Environmental Products Inc. 

Tru Earth Environmental Products is an award-winning, global household cleaning product organization, led by a group of passionate and dedicated changemakers whose mission is to help restore our planet at a climatic and social level. The two key performance indicators that Tru Earth tracks are the number of eco-strips donated and the number of plastic jugs eliminated from landfills and oceans. As of October 3, 2023, Tru Earth and their customer base have eliminated 160,000,000 plastic household containers (and other single use plastics) that otherwise would have been dumped into landfills or oceans, and donated 30,265,147 eco-strips to 1,000+ organizations across the globe. In the past year, Tru Earth has achieved B Corp Certification, a designation indicating high standards of accountability and transparency in measuring social and environmental impact.          

Young Entrepreneur – Brittany Lichty (Moody Brows) and Deep Sidhu (Brow Mastrz Beauty) 

Moody Brows is the embodiment of Brittany Lichty’s passion for helping people feel confident and comfortable in their skin. Inclusivity is paramount for Lichty, both personally and professionally. She wanted to create a space that welcomed all ages, races, and genders, where she could help people look and feel their best. Lichty’s clients, from teenagers to seniors, come from all walks of life. As a first-time entrepreneur, Lichty built her business from the ground up, relying on the community to help spread the word. She has offered numerous contests in collaboration with local businesses; the partners were able to increase awareness of each other’s brands and encourage clients to support their businesses. Moody Brows proudly gives back to the community by supporting non-profit organizations.

Deep Sidhu of Brow Mastrz started her career at the age of 18 and is now a renowned brow artist with 15 years of experience as an esthetician. She believes in giving everyone a chance, encourages young estheticians to develop and upgrade their skills, and offers ongoing training. Sidhu prides her herself on being honest and upfront with her clients, and she truly wants each person to feel comfortable and beautiful with every service. She is committed to diversity in her hiring practices and believes that in order to lead, you must be collaborative and willing to listen to other voices. Sidhu believes it is her responsibility to build connections within the community and help make it feel like a safe welcoming space for everyone.  

The City’s Economic Development Committee selects the winners based on nominations received from the public. Visit portmoody.ca/spikeawards to learn more.