Business briefs

Business briefs from across the North Okanagan region.

Edward Jones earns employer accolade

For the 11th consecutive year, financial services firm Edward Jones was named by Aon Hewitt to the 50 Best Employers in Canada list, published in Maclean’s magazine.

The firm ranked 14th overall.

A total of 280 Canadian employers took part in the 2013 Best Employers survey, with more than 190,000 Canadian workers responding to questions that focused on employee engagement.

Edward Jones was recognized for the training it provides new financial advisors and flexible work arrangements it offers employees so they can balance their work with their private lives.

Okanagan College focussing on tourism

Okanagan College is tapping into the tourism industry.

The college, which has campuses spread across six communities in the Thompson-Okanagan region, is focusing a new department on food and tourism. Jonathan Rouse will officially start his new job as Director of Wine, Food & Tourism at the college this month.

Rouse, already a faculty member in the Okanagan School of Business, brings experience from past work as a board member for Tourism Vancouver, and holds current positions with the Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council Board, the B.C. Hospitality Foundation and is co-chair of the Association of Canadian Community Colleges Tourism Affinity Group.

Said Okanagan College president Jim Hamilton: “His (Rouse) appointment marks a turning point for the college in its investment in these programming areas and in the commitment to further serving the region and economy.”

Buszard keynotes chamber breakfast

UBC Okanagan is already going on eight years, and according to Deborah Buszard, there are still plenty of opportunities on the horizon.

Buszard, the university’s principal and deputy vice-chancellor, will speak about those opportunities at a breakfast seminar hosted by the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce Thursday at the Prestige Hotel (4411 32nd Street).

Buszard will discuss the university’s impact on the region; potential partnership opportunities with North Okanagan businesses; and what’s next for the UBC Okanagan campus.

Purpose-built for the 21st century, the UBC campus has tripled its building space since it opened in 2005, and student enrolment has grown from 3,500 to more than 8,300.

The breakfast begins at 7:30 a.m., with the seminar following at 8:00. Early-bird tickets are $25 for chamber members before Jan. 21. Non-members pay $35. Contact the chamber office at 250-545-0771 for more information.

Meanwhile, the deadline for the chamber’s annual Business Excellence Awards is Friday.

For more information on the gala event, which goes Saturday, March 16, or to make a nomination, visit