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Women Founders

Empowering women founders
with enhanced startup support

Pitch your business to up to 50 angel investors

Are you a woman-identifying founder disrupting the Canadian tech space? Apply now to pitch your business at the DMZ’s inaugural Women Founders Summit in partnership with Firehood on March 1. Pitch your business to up to 50 angels for the opportunity to secure investment! Apply by February 3.


Official media sponsor:

Recognizing extraordinary women in tech

The DMZ's Women of the Year Award is back for its second year, spotlighting inspirational Canadian women trailblazers in tech. Know a friend, colleague, manager, leader, or mentor making their mark in the tech world? Nominations are open until January 29, and recipients will be notified in February and announced publicly at our Women Founders Summit on March 1, 2023.

Nominations closed

Women tech founders drive innovation, the tech ecosystem and the global economy. However, they also encounter disproportionate barriers to business growth compared to their male counterparts.

That’s why women-identifying founders that come to the DMZ receive additional opportunities and specialized support to support their growth – on top of the standard programming that all founders get.

Added benefits that women founders in DMZ programs can tap into include:

  • A strong peer support group of other women tech founders, mentors, and industry leaders and additional hands-on support from DMZ staff
  • Introductions to funders dedicated to women founders and partnership opportunities
  • Amplified company exposure and heightened visibility through marketing and PR opportunities
  • Access to exclusive cutting-edge content, workshops, resources, discounts, events and more

The above benefits vary by program.

Our programs

Women founders receive special support across DMZ programs


Establish my business idea


An exclusive online platform and community built to support emerging women entrepreneurs.



Build and refine my prototype


A 16-week program helping founders build an MVP and launch their business. Women founders receive an additional layer of programming.



Launch and scale my product

rocket ship

An 18-month program helping high-potential startups gain market traction. Women founders receive an additional layer of programming.



Experts-in-Residence (EiRs) are the DMZ’s in-house subject-matter experts that advise founders on sales process, revenue growth, product design, pitch coaching and more. These EiRs work with startups in our Women Founders program:

Alex Thibault

Business Strategy

Ali Kiassat

Sales and Business Development

Andrea Matheson


Andreas Souvaliotis

Business Strategy

Andrew Ricchetti

AI, Analytics, Data Science

Anthony Lau

Product, Sales

Berjesty Kozanoglu

User Experience Design

Christian Grunt


Cyrus Cooper

Hospitality, Customer Service

Eugene Bomba

Capital raising

Frank Erschen


Gina Bowen


Hackim Farrell

Cybersecurity, Product

Jodi Echakowitz

Public Relations

Kareem Arafat

Senior tech executive

Karen Hogg

Customer Success

Liane Coulahan


Martin Croteau


Michael McCarthy

Business Strategy

Monica Abramov

Product, Retail Strategy and Marketing

Myron Parks

Principal Agile Coach

Naveed Ahmad

CEO Coaching

Nihad Kamal


Phillip Gales


Rick Hill


Ryan Nahas

Sales and Growth

Seham Abukhater

Product Marketing

Sultan Mehrabi


Trailblazer Partners

Changemaker Partners


Emily Smiley

Director, Programs & Corporate Collaborations

Juliesa Adolphus

Program Execution Lead

Justine Clark

Programs Lead

Sherif El Tawil

Senior Director, Programs & Partnerships

Vanessa Shiu

Strategic Projects & Administration Manager


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