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2020 Special Recognition Award

(From Left, Clockwise) Jennifer Menard, Founder & CEO, Director, Client Happiness of Staff Shop Inc.; Kim Thiara, President and CEO, AceTronic Industrial Controls Inc.; Isaac Olowolafe, Co-President, Dream Supplies; Kathy Cheng, President, Redwood Classics Apparel and team; Kacee Vasudeva, CEO, SIM (Maxtech);  Andy Kahlon, Director, Daytona Freight Systems Inc.

AceTronic  3 years ago, AceTronic introduced a food/medical approved sanitizer to AceTronic’s portfolio. Choosing to market our sanitizer as a means of reducing absenteeism by decreasing the number of sick days, we approached select customers, however, received minimal interest.  Fast forward to mid-March of this year, where having enough product on the floor became an issue.  By way of our AceInsights, newsletter, a large Tier 1, became aware that AceTronic was offering a sanitizer.  Unbeknownst to AceTronic, we were able to allow some vital work to begin with one of our largest Tier 1 accounts. Traditionally an automotive TIER 1 supplier, for well over 60 years, pivoted immediately. Within 3 weeks they were able to provide GM with ventilator components. Thereby, enabling General Motors to build much-needed ventilators. Being a resource during such a crucial period reinforced AceTronics’ vision of ensuring we meet and exceed our customers’ expectations and provide them with real-time solutions.

Since 1983 AceTronic has grown to become a trusted and respected resource for the plastic moulding industry in North America. Manufacturing hot runner and water temperature controls as well mould cable assemblies has provided our customers with the satisfaction of knowing that AceTronic will keep their production flowing. Plastics are in every facet of our lives, so are the breadth of AceTronics’ customers, from automotive and construction thru to the pharmaceutical and food packaging sectors.

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Daytona Freight Systems Inc.Being an essential service provider, Daytona Freight Systems Inc. had to make quick and effective changes to the company operations at the start of the pandemic. With the pandemic fully in effect in North America, senior management of Daytona held emergency virtual meetings to outline the response of the company. Daytona Freight Systems was able to pivot within a 2-day span and not only make the business operate virtually as much as possible but also procure and distribute PPE’s to the frontline employees of the organization to ensure safety. In the middle of these activities, the organization also realized the importance of supporting the local community. As such the company made sure to instruct staff to prioritize essential deliveries. These included all deliveries related to groceries, healthcare and PPE that were required across North America. Daytona worked closely to procure and deliver the supplies needed by frontline workers.

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Dream Supplies Inc.Dream Supplies recognized the need for there to be a reliable source for Personal Protection Equipment within the space we are already currently serving. We were able to partner with one of the best global suppliers of hand sanitizer (74% alcohol and made from food-grade alcohol vs industrial grade) at exceptionally good price counts. We are now also offering nitrile gloves, respirators, test kits, disinfectant wipes as well. We are excited to be able to be a reliable source of these products for our client base and continue to be flexible as the market develops. Dream Supplies is a reliable source for our clients for commercial supplies such as building materials (flooring, cabinets, appliances), personal protection equipment (Sanitizer, nitrile gloves) and continues to adapt to emerging market trends.

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Redwood Classics Apparel WS & Co. is one of Canada’s leading full-service apparel manufacturers, producing for fashion retailers and designers around the globe. The company has experienced a 300% growth by way of sales, employee headcount, and physical operational space from 2009 to the present. But the journey has not always been easy – especially in 2020.

In just a 3-month period since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, Redwood Classics has supplied masks to four Fortune 500 companies – RBC, Coca-Cola Canada, Accenture, and Ricoh Canada. Their generous purchases have helped fuel our donation of 10,000+ masks – a total valuation of $120,000+, impacting almost 20 healthcare networks, First Nation communities, and charitable organizations across Canada. One of our donation partners, Michael Garron Hospital, has now collected over 120,000 reusable masks, and President Mitze Mourinho credits Redwood Classics for jump-starting their campaign.

In June 2020, Redwood Classics launched a limited edition set of 3 masks using our Sustainable-All-Over-Print (SAOP) innovation – the first sustainable fabric printing process available in Canada. The Unity Collection masks were made to support Pride Month and celebrate inclusivity, with a portion of the proceeds going to Canada’s LGBT+ Canadian Chamber of Commerce.

As of July 2020, Redwood Classics supplied level-1 medical gowns to a women-owned contract holder to the Province of Ontario and is currently in negotiations to secure another PPE project as a Tier 2 to the Government of Canada.

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SIM(Maxtech) Started as a 1-man operation in 1977 when Kacee Vasudeva started Maxi-Flow in his garage. Today, with 3 facilities in North America and over 200 machines, SIM (Maxtech) is a pioneer in the custom machining of metal parts for over 43 years. From Automotive to Industrial Mining, Consumer products & Agriculture Equipment, it has been the #1 choice for most complex machining jobs. 

Since February 2020, SIM has been working tirelessly to help Canada flatten the COVID Curve and support our front-line health care workers with the much-needed Personal Protective Equipment they desperately need. Kacee Vasudeva and his team at Specialty Innovations & Mfg. (SIM) Ltd soldiered on and worked through the pandemic 24×7 to develop innovative products that were aimed to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. As a result of these efforts, several products were launched- face masks, face shields, hand sanitizers, NoVi Key, NoVi Badge, NoVi Band, and even advanced medical devices. Most of these products are “Made in Canada” and are designed not just for individuals but also for businesses as they gradually get back to work.

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Staff Shop Inc. As a staffing firm operating in Hospitality & Events, Staff Shop’s niche business came to a halt in March 2020 when all events in Canada and most hospitality operations were forced to shut down. Founder & CEO Jennifer Menard quickly pivoted to staffing in the Essential Services space, and Staff Shop’s employees were re-oriented to perform duties in one of the nation’s hardest-hit areas – Long Term Care Homes. In May, Staff Shop made the decision to support a socially distanced concert series at Drive-In Theaters across the continent. Despite the costs of registering in five additional provinces, Staff Shop jumped at the chance to provide much-needed employment opportunities on a nationwide scale.

Despite the storm of COVID-19, Staff Shop, under Jennifer’s leadership, found a way to turn a bad situation into an opportunity to give back and expand its reach on a wider scale than ever before.

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