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Chamber welcomes architect, ‘urbanist provocateur’ as Chair

Alum Johanna Hurme inherits gavel as she begins her term as The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce Chair on Oct. 5

October 4, 2017 — 

An award-winning architect and outspoken advocate for modern urban policy will become the 121st Chair of The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce.

Johanna Hurme, 1999 B.Env.D., 2002 M.Arch., who co-founded 5468796 Architecture in 2007 and has designed some of Winnipeg’s most recognizable, recent buildings, will be sworn in as Chair by Mayor Brian Bowman on October 5 at The Winnipeg Chamber’s annual general meeting.

“The Chamber to me is the modern Agora or the Forum where important conversations happen and new connections are made,” says Helsinki-born Hurme. “It’s an incubator for new ideas.”

Those ideas include provocative suggestions for the city to achieve its full potential, Hurme says. In public speaking opportunities and through her work launching Design Quarter Winnipeg, the small business owner has pushed for a more walkable, bike-friendly downtown with greater emphasis on design in civic projects. Her vision for Winnipeg and championing the city’s rising profile in her profession made her an obvious choice for the year-long position as Chair of The Winnipeg Chamber.

“There’s a conversation running parallel to Winnipeg’s growing momentum,” says Loren Remillard, President and CEO of The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce, who will discuss how The Chamber set a new record for membership at the upcoming AGM. “I see citizens more engaged than ever asking ‘What kind of city are we becoming?’ We’re looking forward to Johanna pushing us on that question.”

Hurme’s term follows Wadood Ibrahim (Protegra Community of Companies) and Priti Mehta-Shah (49-97 Capital Partners) and precedes Kate Fenske (CN), who will serve this year as Incoming Chair.

About Johanna Hurme
Hurme holds a degree from the Helsinki University of Technology, with Bachelor of Environmental Design and Master of Architecture degrees from the University of Manitoba Faculty of Architecture (FAUM). She serves on the Council of the Manitoba Association of Architects, is the Founder and CEO of Design Quarter Winnipeg, and is an active member of the International Van Alen Institute. She has taught design at FAUM as well as the University Toronto Daniels Faculty of Architecture and lectures at universities across North America. In 2010 she received a Manitoba Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Emerging Business and most recently was shortlisted for the 2017 Moira Gemmill prize for Emerging Architecture.

About The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce
The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce, founded in 1873, is the largest organization representing the voice of business in Winnipeg. Our mission is to foster an environment in which Winnipeg business can prosper.

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