Our ‘Keep it Local Vaughan’ flyer is mailed out through Canada Post and reaches 12,000 business in Vaughan. Thank you to these local businesses for advertising in our April edition!

More direct mail opportunities are coming soon. Join our Business Voice E-Newsletter to be the first to know of upcoming mailouts.

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Introducing the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 Board of Directors. We are looking forward to an outstanding year ahead.

Executive Committee

Joyce Usher-Mesiano


Joyce Usher-Mesiano
National Brokers Insurance Services Inc.
Phone: 905 597 3500 x 4225

Luigi Ciciretto

First Vice Chair & Treasurer

Luigi Ciciretto
Partner, Assurance & Accounting
BDO Canada LLP
Phone: 905-946-2521

Luisa Tersigni

Second Vice Chair

Luisa Tersigni
Director, Internal Audit
Phone: 905-532-4644

Rakan Aown


Rakan Aown
Vice President, Business Development
KPMG Enterprise
Phone: 416-549-7803



Enzo Di Iorio


Enzo Di Iorio
Managing Partner, Vaughan
Miller Thomson LLP
Phone: 905-415-6700

Luisa Tersigni


Kenneth Dunkley
Phone: 416-678-9516


Luisa Tersigni


Pina Falbo
Mircom Group of Companies
Phone: 905-660-4655


Luisa Tersigni


Nicolas Heifa
Sr. Manager and Team Lead GTA North
Phone: 905-761-2621

Luisa Tersigni


Howard Klerer
Harkel Office Furniture Ltd.
Phone: 905-417-5335

Luisa Tersigni


Jeremy Neil
Executive Vice President
Macrodyne Technologies Inc.
Phone: 905-669-2253

Joe Pampena


Joe Pampena
C4C Coaching-4-Change
Phone: 416-801-2476

Peter Sandica


Peter Sandica
Rainbow International Restoration of Markham/Richmond Hill and Mississauga
Phone: 905-604-4646

The Vaughan Chamber of Commerce is excited to officially announce the 2018 Business Achievement Award Finalists. This year, we had a record-breaking number of nominations, proving the vibrancy of our business community.

Congratulations to our 2018 Finalists:
(listed in alphabetical order)

  • Anatolia Tile & Stone
  • Arcadia Academy of Music
  • Arista Homes Limited
  • Aurum
  • Avron Distribution
  • Bailey Metal Products Limited
  • Brain Power Enrichment Programs Ltd. – Dr. Karine Rashkovsky
  • Centric Investigation Services Inc.
  • Clearway Group of Companies
  • Copper Creek Golf Club
  • Creating Alternatives
  • Dependable Mechanical Systems
  • Element by Westin Vaughan Southwest
  • Essential Chiropractic Massage Therapy
  • Forest Contractors Limited
  • Generation Homes Inc. / Design Generation
  • H2Flow Equipment Inc.
  • Hank Daddy’s Barbecue
  • Hats On For Awareness
  • KPMG
  • Mike and Mike’s Organics
  • Mister Safety Shoes
  • Montessori School of Kleinburg
  • Pfaff Automotive Partners
  • Picco Engineering
  • Pitstop
  • Ratech Electronics
  • Roma Moulding
  • Royal Stone Landscaping & Design
  • Shining Through Centre
  • Skinprovement Medi Spa & Laser Clinic – Ashley Perri
  • Sorbara Group of Companies
  • Succulent Chocolates & Sweets – Sandra Abballe
  • TACC Construction
  • The Centre for Health & Rehabilitation
  • The Hub Vaughan
  • Unique Store Fixtures Ltd.
  • Universal Care Canada
  • Vaughan Mills, Ivanhoe Cambridge Inc.
  • Villa Colombo Vaughan


Over 400 nominations within 13 different award categories were narrowed down to the top 5 in each category before the top 3 finalists were determined, by vote, by our Business Achievement Awards judging committee. We wanted to take a moment to mention those who made the top 5, and thank them for their participation.

Congratulations to these honourable mentions:
(listed in alphabetical order)

  • 9Senses
  • Angus Inc. o/a Hero Burger
  • Bianchi Presta LLP
  • BizON – Nunzio Presta
  • Corma Inc.
  • Create Healthy Food Inc. (Umanii)
  • DECO Homes – Corey Brown
  • First Avenue Properties
  • Fruit of The Land Inc.
  • Gertex Solutions Inc.
  • Korhani Home
  • Litemode Limited
  • Live Patrol Inc.
  • Nu-Trend Construction
  • Perri’s Leathers Ltd.
  • Shining Through The Rain Foundation
  • SKYGRID Construction Inc.
  • Sunwell Technologies Inc.
  • The Spark Institute
  • Training Folks
  • TruBliss Wellness & Beauty Spa
  • Weston Flooring Inc.
  • Woof-A-Palooza
  • YMCA of GTA
  • Zoe’s Tender Years Childcare

Tickets for the 2018 Business Achievement Awards are on sale now!

Join us Thursday, May 3rd at Universal EventSpace


Members – $250+hst
Non-Members – $375+hst
Corporate tables available.

Find Out More

Introducing our 2018 Community Champions!
We’re proud to show off our dedicated Vaughan Chamber members throughout the year at EVERY chamber event.
We thank all of our “Community Champions” for their participation!
When the business community stands together, great things happen.


To find out more on how you can become a Vaughan Chamber Community Champion CLICK HERE

Say hello to our FEBRUARY NEW MEMBERS! Welcome to our network!

For over four decades, the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce has been dedicated to serving the businesses within our world-class city. Be part of the positive momentum that’s driving unprecedented economic growth within Vaughan and the Chamber.

Support our vibrant and thriving business community – join today.









The Emerging Leaders/Next-Gen Peer Group will offer you honest, open and constructive feedback on common challenges such as how to make yourself invaluable to your company, grow your profile and areas of responsibility, or prioritize your work-life balance.

Take advantage of valuable input from other emerging leaders who are facing the same challenges as you.

  • 5 morning meetings
  • Max. 12 participants per group
  • Experienced moderator & customized agendas for the needs of each group
  • Exclusive to Vaughan Chamber members only
  • Light snacks and refreshments provided


Upcoming Peer Groups:

  • April to June 2018 (5 morning sessions)
    $425+HST for 5 sessions.
    Participation is strictly limited to Vaughan Chamber members.
    First-come, first-serve!
  • September to December 2018 (5 morning sessions)
    $425+HST for 5 sessions.
    Participation is strictly limited to Vaughan Chamber members.
    First-come, first-serve!


To sign up or to get more information, please contact us at:
Please use the Subject Line “Emerging Leaders Peer Group”

For the sake of consistency and constructive on-going dialogue, members are expected to attend all sessions.
Welcome to the world of Group Mentoring!

Minister Del Duca
Minister of Transportation
3rd Floor, Ferguson Block
77 Wellesley Street West
Toronto, Ontario M7A 1Z8

Tuesday, January 16, 2018


RE: Relief Line and Yonge Subway Extension

Dear Minister Del Duca,

We are pleased to share with you this year’s Ontario Chamber Network’s Pre-Budget submission which includes a call for dedicating specific revenue towards Metrolinx Big Move and ‘Next Wave’ priority projects. The Ontario Chamber Network represents 135 communities across Ontario and acts as the voice of 60,000 businesses. This particular pre-budget submission is based on a motion that was brought forward at the 2017 Ontario Chamber AGM by the Newmarket Chamber of Commerce, Vaughan Chamber of Commerce and Richmond Hill Board of Trade with full support from the Markham Board of Trade. As a chamber network, we are urging the the Government of Ontario, the Regional Municipality of York and the City of Toronto to expedite the conversation on dedicating revenue streams for Metrolinx Big Move and ‘Next Wave’ priority projects, including the Yonge North Subway Extension and the Yonge Relief Line, given the benefits to the GTHA and wider-region for current and future generations.

As a province, we are significantly behind on our transportation infrastructure and it’s extremely critical that we close the increasing transportation gap in the Greater Toronto Hamilton Area. The past 20 years have seen the population size rapidly increase throughout the GTHA but unfortunately, infrastructure investments have not kept pace with this growth.

We applaud your government for recently made investments towards public transit. Further investment into the Yonge subway extension and Relief line will complement investments made in our existing transit network and help connect the GTHA by integrating with neighbouring transit options. They will also help maximize the recent investments in GO Transit, VIVA-YRT, Eglinton Crosstown LRT, UP Express connectivity to Pearson Airport, and the Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension culminating in Vaughan. This will allow municipalities’ far greater connectivity with surrounding communities.

Already included in the Metrolinx Big Move and identified as ‘Next Wave’ priority projects, developments of this magnitude will lead to new business and job creation, intensification, and the attraction of more affordable housing as well as significant environmental benefits. In fact, by eliminating the need for 2,500 bus trips that currently service a stretch of Yonge Street each weekday, the Yonge North Subway Extension has significant potential to reduce carbon emissions and eliminate up to 28 tonnes of GHG each workday. Notably, the Yonge North Subway Extension has already received $55 million from the Province for preliminary engineering and design, an investment that should be maximized. We also want to acknowledge the $36 million from the federal government that has made it clear to the York Region business community of the commitment to the project.

As populations continue to grow and densities rise throughout the GTHA and beyond, we need to create connected infrastructure for future generations that ensures the greatest range of mobility options. Projects of this size and scope require the financial support of all levels of government over an extended duration of time. The longer we wait, the more expensive projects of this magnitude become.

Minister Del Duca, we recognize that you are a strong advocate for transportation investment in the Province. We would be pleased to work with you, your government and other levels of government to advance these projects. It would also be our pleasure to meet with you to further the conversation on this file.

Thank you,

Debra Scott
President and CEO of the Newmarket Chamber of Commerce

Brian Shifman
President and CEO of the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce

Richard Cunningham
President and CEO of the Markham Board of Trade

Karen Mortfield
Executive Director of the Richmond Hill Board of Trade

cc: MPP Chris Ballard, MPP Reza Moridi, Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua, MPP Michael Chan, MPP Gila Martow, Mayor Van Bynen, MPP Julia Munrow, Mayor David Barrow, Chairman Wayne Emmerson, MPP Helena Jaczek, Mayor Frank Scarpitti

Download PDF Version Here

Vaughan, ON, December 18, 2017 – On behalf of the local business community, the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce congratulates the Government of Canada, the Ontario Provincial Government, Regional Municipality of York, City of Toronto, York Region Transit, Toronto Transit Commission and the City of Vaughan on the completion of the Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension (TYSSE).

The Vaughan Chamber recognizes the historic milestone – this marks the first ever extension of the subway system outside of the City of Toronto’s borders. The fact it serves York University’s 65,000+ population, and culminates in Vaughan demonstrates the positive results that can be achieved through inter-governmental cooperation and the upward trajectory of the City of Vaughan’s status as a hub of commercial and residential activity.

“The City of Vaughan is consistently cited as one of Canada’s most lucrative places to do business, and recognized for its highly educated population and access to transportation networks. The subway extension will accelerate this incredible transformation that’s happening in Vaughan and within York Region,” said Brian Shifman, President & CEO of the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce. “Eleven-thousand businesses in Vaughan can take advantage of this economic opportunity.”

The 8.6-kilometre Line 1 extension officially opened yesterday (Sunday, December 17) with six new stations, three of which are in Vaughan (Pioneer Village, Highway 407, and Vaughan Metropolitan Centre). Although the subway line stretches over two cities, customers only need to purchase one fare to ride its entire length. When switching to a York Region Transit bus, however, customers will need to purchase an additional fare.

TTC reports it will take approximately 14 minutes to travel the length of the extension from Sheppard West Station (formerly Downsview Station) to Vaughan Metropolitan Centre (VMC). It’s also reported that the ride time for the full line, from Finch Station to VMC is approximately 79 minutes.

Vaughan Chamber member, Bausch + Lomb Canada, applauds all levels of government and local partners for accomplishing a historic transit development milestone with the expansion of the Toronto Transit system’s subway to Vaughan.

“We are pleased that our employees have a convenient public transit option to commute to and from the Bausch + Lomb offices,” said Lorenzo Santini, Vice President of Bausch + Lomb Canada. “As a major distribution centre for Bausch + Lomb vision health products, we also anticipate increased ease of moving products from our facility to customers on local roads that will benefit from more efficient traffic.”

On Friday, December 15, the official ribbon-cutting took place at Vaughan Metropolitan Centre. All levels of government participated in the ceremony, represented by: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Premier Kathleen Wynne, York Region Chairman Wayne Emmerson, City of Vaughan Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua and City of Toronto Mayor John Tory.

Earlier this year, the Vaughan Chamber coordinated with neighbouring chambers to pass two transportation related resolutions at the 2017 Ontario Chamber of Commerce AGM and Policy Session, including: Support for Metrolinx Big Move and ‘Next Wave’ Priority Projects, and the need for Regional Transportation Fare Integration.

The Vaughan Chamber continues to call on all levels of government to advance efforts towards a seamless transportation network that includes regional fare integration, and for the expansion of the regional transit network with extensions of the Yonge subway to Richmond Hill and the creation of the Relief Line downtown.

“With the opening of the Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension and all the good will it has fostered, the opportunity to continue to expand the network and to facilitate more seamless use of transit through integrated fares should be seized upon,” said Shifman.

The Vaughan Chamber of Commerce is the premier membership and networking association in Vaughan.  The Vaughan Chamber proudly represents business from all sectors of the economy including large corporations and small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs).  The organization is a strong voice on public policy issues of importance to the local business community, such as infrastructure, transportation, corporate taxes, and opportunities for business growth.



Media Contact:

Kelly McGuire
Communications and Public Policy Officer
Vaughan Chamber of Commerce
905 761 1366 ext 229

Monday, September 11, 2017

Kathleen Wynne, Premier
Legislative Building
Queen’s Park
Toronto ON M7A 1A1

RE: Bill 148, the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act

Dear Premier Wynne,
We, leaders of the York Region Business community, speaking on behalf of our 5000 members across York Region are calling on your government to slow down the pace of implementation and make the necessary amendments to Bill 148, the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act.

In response to the concerns raised by our members following the release of the Economic Impact Analysis by the Keep Ontario Working (KOW) coalition, we convened two Town Halls which gathered the York Region Business community for a discussion on Bill 148. These Town Halls were organized specifically for business owners and operators to provide insight into the potential implications of the announced changes to Ontario’s labour laws with a focus on clarifying provisions of the act as well as collecting feedback to help frame the conversation around this legislation.

Certain comments made by business owners were alarming and should underscore the severity of the situation for our business economy. A significant number of business owners suggested they would have to decrease their number of employees because of the rapid increase in operating costs resulting from this legislation.

The proposed changes would mean that employers would be required to increase the minimum wage by 23 per cent in six months, followed by another 11 per cent a year later. This represents a total increase of 32 per cent over just 18 months. Our members are alarmed at what certain provisions of this legislation will mean for their long term survival.

Another concern mentioned multiple times is the scheduling portion of Bill 148. A “one size fits all” provision for scheduling fails to take into account the different operational requirements of businesses in each sector. We strongly recommend that the Government adhere to the recommendations made in the Changing Workplaces Review that “the government should adopt a sector-specific approach to the regulation of scheduling”.

Ultimately, this fear is reflected in the Economic Impact Analysis by CANSEA which shows that York Region alone will have 15, 920 jobs at risk if this legislation is to pass in its current form. These numbers are highly concerning and show that the long term economic growth of the region will be significantly impacted if the legislation isn’t amended. Businesses must be provided a combination of offsets and amendments to adjust to the increased operating costs resulting from the new rules.

We urge you to consider the risks outlined, implement broad amendments to Bill 148, and slow down implementation in order to provide appropriate offsets that will protect Ontario’s jobs, communities and our most vulnerable.

To demonstrate true fairness and compassion for workers, we must ensure Ontario has a strong economy to help create jobs and increase economic growth.


Aurora Chamber of Commerce
East Gwillimbury Chamber of Commerce
Georgina Chamber of Commerce
King Chamber of Commerce
Markham Board of Trade
Newmarket Chamber of Commerce
Richmond Hill Board of Trade
Vaughan Chamber of Commerce
Whitchurch-Stouffville Chamber of Commerce

About the York Region Chambers of Commerce and Boards of Trade:
The York Region Group of Chambers of Commerce and Boards of Trade collectively represent the interests of over 5000 York Region business members, and advocates on their behalf.

What you need to know

Vaughan, ON, September 13, 2017

Finance Canada is proposing the most significant tax changes in 50 years. If your business is incorporated, then you could be facing a larger tax bill and more compliance costs from the government’s new proposals to change the way corporations are taxed.

The proposal overhauls taxation of private companies and affects income sprinkling, passive investment income and capital gains. All incorporated businesses, large or small, regardless of sector will be impacted.

“The Vaughan Chamber is proud of the hard work invested each day by its private sector members and family-run businesses who are concerned about the proposed taxation changes,” said Brian Shifman, President and CEO of the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce. “We think it’s imperative that government extend the consultation period for these proposed changes, and does everything it can to protect and empower private business.”

Here are three things you need to know about the tax changes proposed by the federal government:

1) Do you employ family members? The government wants to review their compensation to apply a much higher tax rate on income they consider “unreasonable”.

2) Do you invest the profits from your business? The federal government is proposing to tax income at an effective rate of 70%.

3) Do you want to pass your business on to your children? Stringent new rules make it difficult for younger kids to get the capital gains exemption. They could be double-taxed.

“Family owned and operated businesses struggle to pass on their enterprises to their offspring. The government needs to be focused on ways to help succession planning rather than setting up roadblocks like they’re currently proposing with the draft legislation,” said Marco Bellisario, President of Concord Steel Centre Ltd., and a Vaughan Chamber member. “In trying to achieve ‘fairness’, we’re actually harming the entrepreneurial spirit that drives the Canadian economy.”

Another proud Vaughan Chamber member had this to say: “Small business owners and their families expose their personal assets to build businesses and employ Canadians,” said Dario Battista, President & CEO of isure.ca insurance. “These proposed changes will likely force expanding businesses to rethink their strategy and consider hiring less or slow expansion investment.”

Next steps:

  • Consult your accountant or tax specialist to see how you might be affected.
  • Email us at the Vaughan Chamber to let us know your thoughts and how you may be impacted. You can reach us at info@vaughanchamber.ca
  • Write your MP to ask questions, and express your comments and/or concerns. MPs will be attending caucus meetings shortly so we recommend you not delay. (Don’t forget to copy us on your letter.)
    • Vaughan MPs include:
      • Francesco Sorbara, Vaughan-Woodbridge (LIB)
      • Deb Schulte, King-Vaughan (LIB)
      • Peter Kent, Thornhill (CONS)


“The federal government wants responses to this proposed legislation by October 2, which we believe is not enough time to identify its complex and sweeping changes to the tax system,” said Paul Woolford, Enterprise Tax Leader, Tax Partner, at KPMG Enterprise, which is a member of the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce. “Together with members of the business community, we’re asking for an extension to the consultation, and encourage those impacted to write to their local member of parliament.”

The Vaughan Chamber of Commerce is the premier membership and networking association in Vaughan.  The VCC proudly represents business from all sectors of the economy including large corporations and small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs).  The VCC is a strong voice on public policy issues of importance to the local business community such as infrastructure, transportation, taxation, and opportunities for business growth.


Media Contact:

Kelly McGuire
Communications and Public Policy Officer
Vaughan Chamber of Commerce
905 761 1366 ext 229