Innovation leaders bring a wealth of experience to judge 2023 Mitacs Entrepreneur Awards

Independent judging panel selects five emerging entrepreneurs to be announced in a ceremony on May 18

Waterloo, ON — Mitacs is proud to announce the judges for the 2023 Mitacs Entrepreneur Awards, which will be broadcast live from the Waterloo region on May 18. Eight innovation and entrepreneurship leaders from across Canada share their expertise to determine the awards’ five winners.

The judges come from diverse industries and backgrounds, bringing a wealth of experience in start-ups, investment, research and development, and innovation. In addition to assessing the influence of the applicant’s Mitacs experience on their business, they evaluate all applications based on the soundness of business planning and the values of each award category, including sustainability, potential for global impact, social innovation, and more.

The esteemed judges for the 2023 Mitacs Entrepreneur Awards are:

  • Alwar Pillai, CEO and Co-Founder, Fable
  • Daryl Genge, President and CEO, Springboard Atlantic
  • Jean Saint-Vil, Special Advisor to the Vice-Principal, Research and Innovation, McGill University
  • Jesse Vincent-Herscovici, CEO, Axelys
  • Kayla Isabelle, Executive Director, Startup Canada
  • Mary Elizabeth Luka, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto, Scarborough
  • Negin Ashouri, Co-Founder and CEO, FemTherapeutics
  • Sabine Soumare, Executive Director, Women Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub

Now in their ninth year, the Mitacs Entrepreneur Awards showcase Canada’s most promising minds. The event recognizes past and present Mitacs program participants who apply their groundbreaking research to fuel innovation and create meaningful change in the country as leading entrepreneurs.

In addition to a $5,000 prize towards their start-up, winners will have a chance to win $2,500 as part of the awards ceremony’s Audience Favourite Pitch Competition.


Dr. John Hepburn, CEO, Mitacs

“We are grateful to the eight outstanding innovation and entrepreneurship leaders who have generously shared their time and knowledge with us in support of the 2023 Mitacs Entrepreneur Awards. We are proud to celebrate the ideas of past and present Mitacs program participants. To receive the recognition of such a prestigious panel of judges creates opportunities for some of Canada’s up-and-coming entrepreneurs.”

About Mitacs

Mitacs empowers Canadian innovation through effective partnerships that deliver solutions to the world’s most pressing problems. Mitacs assists organizations in reaching their goals, funds cutting-edge innovation, and creates job opportunities for students and postdocs.

A not-for-profit organization, Mitacs is funded by the Government of Canada, the Government of Alberta, the Government of British Columbia, Research Manitoba, the Government of New Brunswick, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, the Government of Nova Scotia, the Government of Ontario, Innovation PEI, the Government of Quebec, the Government of Saskatchewan, and the Government of Yukon.

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