We are pleased to present our judging panel for LiON’S LAIR 2017. Some of Hamilton’s top business experts bring diverse expertise that is truly reflective of Hamilton’s unique economy.

Dilys D’Cruz

Dilys D'Cruz headshotDilys is a passionate and inspirational executive leader with 25 + years progressive and diverse success in financial services including Retail/Business Banking, Wealth Management and Human Resources. As Vice President Community Banking at Meridian Credit Union, Dilys is responsible for Retail, Wealth & Small Business Banking in Ontario South West region which includes 50 branches and 500+ employees. Dilys is actively involved in increasing Meridian’s presence in Hamilton and is proud of the recent partnership with the Farmer’s Market, The City of Hamilton and Innovation Factory in addition to the many local community organizations her branches support. Dilys is a Certified Executive Coach and is known for her commitment to developing future talent and is involved with various activities and organizations to support the advancement of women. Dilys also sits on the Innovation Steering Committee at Meridian.

Julie Ellis

Julie EllisAs a co-founder of award-winning Mabel’s Labels, one of Canada’s greatest small business success stories, and with 15 years in the financial services sector, Julie Ellis now shares her experience and expertise with other entrepreneurs helping them gain clarity to accelerated success. Julie’s area of specialization is working with product-based e-commerce businesses, and for them, she has created “Ignite and Scale”, a process that ignites companies by creating operating leverage to scale higher profits. Bringing new business ideas to life is also part of Julie’s commitment to advising start-ups, and small and medium sized businesses, as the current Board Chair of the Hamilton-based Innovation Factory. She is also a member of the Angel One Investment Network, a not-for- profit organization, which is one of the most active angel investors’ groups in Canada.

Michael Macaluso

Michael Macaluso headshotMichael Macaluso is the President of CARSTAR North America. The CARSTAR network has grown to 500+ collision and glass centres with over 5,000 employees under Michael’s leadership. He is very active in the collision industry as well as committed to the Hamilton community, sitting on the board of directors for St. Joseph’s Healthcare Foundation, Festitalia, TigerTown Council and Hamilton Chamber of Commerce.

Ruth Todd

Ruth Todd headshotRuth leads the Hamilton and St. Catharines offices of KPMG and is a KPMG Enterprise advisor with over 20 years’ experience in audit and advisory services. Her focus is in privately held companies and not-for-profit organizations within manufacturing, real estate development and construction, higher education, healthcare and charities. In addition to serving as Office Managing Partner, Ruth sits on the National Diversity Council of KPMG in Canada and is actively involved in initiatives to mentor and develop future leaders within the firm and in her community.

Stuart Wheldon

Stuart Wheldon headshotStuart recently returned to Canada and his new home of Hamilton after spending 12 years in London, UK. Over the last 20 years, Stuart has worked in the technology, fashion and music industries. Most notably he was Vice President, Int’l Account Services at Toronto based firm Eloqua – the world’s first Marketing Automation company and responsible for operations across Europe and Asia. After a successful IPO and subsequent acquisition, he continued his passion for technology and the arts holding board positions with Kanary Inc., Jean-Pierre Braganza and Rover Inc. Stuart is currently a member of London UK based band THE PRE NEW, signed with 3 Loop Music and distributed via Cherry Red Records. He is also co-founder of a seed capital fund focused on supporting early stage marketing technology start-ups and recently joined the board of the Hamilton Arts Council.

Learn about the 2017 finalists!