January 16th, 2021

From Fort McMurray ashes to Toronto’s red carpet

By Submitted Article on February 13, 2020.

Cardston entrepreneur recognized among best in Canada

By Brit Stanford

Nearly four years ago, Cinda Spirig returned to southern Alberta as an evacuee, her family’s home lost in the 2016 Fort McMurray fire. In November 2019, Spirig walked the red carpet at the RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards Gala in Toronto, where she was recognized as one of the top female entrepreneurs in Canada.

“The judges liked that the salon is a business with heart,” says Spirig, who operates TouchŽ Salon & Spa in Cardston.

In 2019, nearly 9,000 women were nominated for the RBC Women’s Entrepreneurship Awards. Spirig made it to the top 400 finalists in all of Canada.

“The feedback was that I had a strong business model and was doing important work to position my company for future growth,” says Spirig. “In an industry where it can be very competitive and snobby, they loved our focus on pure friendliness and kindness within our team.”

After an elegant red-carpet reception with dignitaries and celebrity guests, finalists moved to the Royal York Ballroom for the official Awards Show.

“At the Gala, I was able to sit around tables with these incredible ladies and came away with so many business ideas,” Spirig says.

Spirig describes one entrepreneur who pushed her way into the male-dominated world of commercial investment to provide affordable housing for families on the brink of homelessness. “She had companies renovate for free marketing. It’s a profitable, smart business, but again, a business with heart. That’s remarkable,” says Spirig.

“Women entrepreneurs are a powerful force [who] generate more than $148 billion a year É their trailblazing efforts serve as an inspiration for the next generation of Canadian entrepreneurs to rise to their potential,” said Greg Grice, Executive Vice-President, Business Financial Services, RBC.

“I’m so grateful to those who support and recognize the value of our local businesses,” says Spirig. “I also really appreciate clients who take me aside when they see a cut or service that is not up to their standard. Feedback is so vital to our commitment to excellence.”

Drawing on experience working in salons in Switzerland, Hawaii and Utah, Spirig feels the quality of service could match any luxury salon in the world.

“The goal was to create a place to provide services a person could find anywhere in the world, but with an even better feeling: brotherly love for all and excellent quality work.”

“It’s a miracle, to be able to have a business like this in such a small town,” says Spirig. “And if you don’t identify miracles, it’s like they never happened.”

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