Back in 2008, when Jill Doucette was studying at the University of Victoria, she couldn’t find her dream job: So she made it up.
A champion of sustainability, Doucette wanted to help businesses catalyze the green economy by reducing energy consumption and measuring their success.
Five years later, she’s overseeing a thriving business, Synergy Enterprises, from her office in downtown Victoria.
“We work with restaurants, hair salons, local tech companies and others, and what they all have in common is they want to be leading their sector in sustainability, and we help them do that,” she said.
In 2011, Doucette’s efforts caught the attention of Leadership Victoria, a collaborative volunteer-based organization that includes leaders from the University of Victoria, local Rotary clubs and the Victoria Foundation.
Doucette, 26, was given the Vancity Youth Award for her success as well as her ambitions to create a global green economy. Reflecting on the honour, the young entrepreneur said there’s still a lot to do.
“One of the benefits of Leadership Victoria is the personal growth it facilitates with potential leaders in the region,” she said. “It really connected me with others who are looking to make those same connections.”
The Victoria Leadership Awards nominations are once again open for 2014, culminating in a gala event at the Crystal Gardens on Feb. 26. Organizers are looking for Greater Victoria’s mentors, community builders and humble leaders who make the region a better place.
“I’d say a good candidate is anybody who’s pushing the envelope,” Doucette said. “Leadership, as I define it for myself, is the ability to inspire others. So I would look at the community and think about who in the community is inspiring others to make change, or leading a team towards making our community better.”
To nominate a colleague or friend, visit leadershipvictoria.ca.