Christine Sommers, ePACT, North Vancouver
Christine Sommers co-founded ePACT in 2012, creating a network that securely shares data and communications between families and organizations before, during or after a crisis. Christine was CEO for 8 years, expanding ePACT to millions of families and hundreds of paying organizations across North America, before leaving the company in early 2020.
Prior to ePACT, Christine had 20 years experience developing and executing business growth strategies in internal management roles and as a strategic consultant. Her expertise and passion spans web innovation and program management, internal and external communications, and driving growth via brand, marketing, and key partnerships.
Christine also has a long history of building and supporting teams, having held leadership roles with such brands as TELUS, HSBC, Mercedes Benz, Best Buy, and the BC Government’s 2010 Winter Olympics Secretariat. Acting as a consultant, she was hired to support clients that include Rogers Communications, Shaw, TI Corp, TransLink and VANOC, and many others.
Christine has been recognized by Canadian press, including Business in Vancouver’s “Women to Watch in Tech”, has won awards in technology and entrepreneurial programs, and along with her co-founder, was proud to accept “Business of the Year” from North Vancouver’s Chamber of Commerce.
Mentor Q & A
Q: A little about YOU…!
My greatest strength is that I have a very high EQ that I value and utilize in personal and professional life. The ability to listen, empathize and connect with others not only helps me in business, but I believe has been key to building relationships that endure.
The biggest lesson that I have learned while an entrepreneur… May sound trite, but the importance of self-care and work/life balance were lessons I never truly learned/adopted while building my company. It was not until the passing of my father and stepping down from role as CEO – taking time to focus on my health and wellbeing – that I realized just how critical prioritizing yourself is, and that it is a disserve to yourself and others when you ignore it.
Q: Advice for other women who are following your path?
One piece of advice: Listen to your gut. Everyone will have an opinion. Listening to and sorting through advice is great, and of course, you can learn and growth through discussions with others, but at the end of the day, you have to trust and listen to your inner voice. I wasted too much time diving into advice from others that I knew deep down was the wrong path.
Q: Can you think of an example of when you had a mentor who provided guidance in your life and the impact or influence they had on your life or business
I was lucky to have a manager early on who was a true mentor. She was empathetic, strong, driven and created vision for herself, for her team and helped me create my own personal vision. My work with her provided a foundation of practices that helped me successfully build my career, and effectively manage and support others.
Q: Why do you want to volunteer your time as a mentor to help less experienced women business owners?
I am a huge believer in women supporting women, and that the world will greatly improve from increased success for women in business. I would be thrilled if I can help one woman avoid any mistakes I’ve made in past, or help provide the same foundational practices for success that my mentor provided me.
Christine is a mentor in the Discovery Foundation’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Program being offered in Spring 2021! Learn more or apply >>