Press Releases

Guelph Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Wins Provincial Award

May 1, 2023

Guelph, May 01, 2023:

Guelph Chamber of Commerce President & CEO, Shakiba Shayani, was awarded the Burnie Gillespie Memorial Award at the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) Annual General Meeting this past weekend in Niagara Falls, Ontario. 

The Burnie Gillespie Memorial Award is the highest honour for a chamber executive in the province. Burnie Gillespie was a long serving board member of the OCC.  He devoted his life to volunteering and was an inspiring leader to chamber professionals for over 25 years. The award is presented to a chamber of commerce or board of trade manager who brings exceptional leadership to their organization and lives and breathes community service. 

“Since joining as President & CEO of her local chamber in September 2019, Shakiba has made tremendous contributions to the community – ensuring a diverse set of businesses and business perspectives have a voice in the chamber network” said Daniel Safayeni, Vice President Policy with the Ontario Chamber of Commerce.  “Shakiba’s proactive and trusting relationships with all levels of government is helping raise Guelph’s profile and create impact for local businesses. 

In addition to that she somehow finds the time to participate meaningfully on Chamber Network committees, including the OCC’s Policy & Advocacy and Nominating & Governance Committees, co-chairing the Ontario Caucus Advisory Council, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s DEI Council, and is a past member of the OCC’s Board of Directors.”  

“On behalf of the Board of Directors, we are delighted to see Shakiba recognized by her peers in the chamber network”, said Brandy Douglas, chair of the board of directors. “She is an exceptional leader of the organization and has shown an extraordinary commitment to strengthening the economic prosperity of the community”. 

For more information please contact