ALISON LAWTON - PRESIDENT
Alison founded Mindset Venture Group in 1997 (formerly known as Winfield Venture Group Ltd.) and has a track record of identifying successful scalable businesses. Alison began her career in private equity sales in the areas of syndicated software, film, television, and real estate. She was one of three founding partners of ideaPARK, a leading technology business incubator that was listed on the TSX in 2000. Alison continues to focus on growing early-stage companies and she has diverse investment portfolio that includes technology, consumer businesses start-ups, and real estate.
As a social venture philanthropist, Alison founded Mindset Social Innovation Foundation in 2006 and has focused her work around global health challenges and scaling social enterprises. She has been involved with a wide range of organizations including Virgin Unite, The Clinton Foundation, Dispensary of Hope, and UNICEF Canada. Alison is the producer of the award-winning documentary Uganda Rising, and established the International Reporting Program at the University of British Columbia, giving journalism graduate students the opportunity to report on under-covered global issues.
Alison was an early investor in the Acumen Fund, one of the first impact investment funds in the US, and she partnered with Virgin Unite to launch the MaRS Catalyst Fund, managed by the MaRS Centre for Impact Investing (MCII). She is also on the board, as well as an investor, of the Community Hypertension Prevention Initiative, Canada's first health-related social impact bond created by Heart & Stroke, in collaboration with the Public Health Agency of Canada and MCII.
LAURA SCHOENMAKERS, CFA - DIRECTOR OF FINANCE
Laura joined Mindset Venture Group Ltd in 2013. She manages Mindset’s private equity investment portfolio and leads the due diligence process, as well as the quantitative investment analysis on potential investee companies. She specializes in building financial models and has worked on a broad range of projects, including many SaaS and consumer businesses analyses, distribution waterfall structures, real estate investment proforma, and has created several financial models to support the development of self-sustaining organizations.
Laura graduated from Maastricht University in The Netherlands with a Bachelor of Business Economics and recently passed the CFA Level III exam in June 2018. In her spare time she loves to go camping and snowboarding, cook up a meal for family and friends, and the highlight of all her travels is the local food!
NICOLE ROUTBARD - EXECUTIVE COORDINATOR
Nicole recently joined the Mindset family in May 2018 as Alison's assistant and team coordinator and is the friendly face and voice that greets everyone in our organization. Nicole previously worked at Beedie Group and brings with her over 20 years experience working in the customer service industry. With her wonderful personality and welcoming smile, Nicole provides a great first impression on behalf of the organization. She is most passionate about helping people and finding the perfect solutions for everyone!
KELLY WOLFE - CONTROLLER
Kelly has been Mindset's bookkeeper and controller since 2008 and we could not imagine running our operations without her. She is the CEO of her own professional bookkeeping and business management firm, K.J Wolfe & Associates Inc. that she founded in 2000. Kelly has extensive experience working with a diverse range of clients in the industries of investment, charity, construction and more, and specializes in all aspects of financial accounting, operational & government reporting, and payroll. She loves and spends much time training and mentoring new talent in the Accounting field. Kelly is also a board member of Mindset Social Innovation Foundation.
Born in Saskatchewan, Kelly moved to Vancouver to pursue a career in business. The beauty and landscape of BC spoke to her, but she finds much joy and beauty in all parts of Canada and hopes to travel to all corners of it coast to coast. When Kelly is not busy working, you can find her gardening at home, walking in the woods, or enjoying a glass of wine with family and friends!
LAUREN CASEY - IMPACT INVESTMENT CONSULTANT
Lauren is an independent investment and governance consultant, with significant experience in the field of impact investing. She currently advises and works with Angel investors, entrepreneurs, and financial institutions, drawing on a diverse background to assist clients with investment decision making and corporate/business growth. Most recently Lauren worked as the first Investment Manager (and founder member of the Transition to Scale team) at Grand Challenges Canada, a $400MM plus Federal government-funded, non-profit organization that funds innovation in global healthcare.
Lauren has an Arts degree from Simon Fraser University, another in Justice Studies from Royal Roads University, and a Law degree (LLB) from the University of London. She has a prior background in law and finance, having worked in the natural resource, corporate governance, bio tech, and venture capital sectors in British Columbia since 2003. In addition to her consulting work, she is a director of a thriving health tech company based in Montreal and also volunteers with the entrepreneurship@UBC program, thereby aiding early start-up entrepreneurs to find their feet.