Media Releases

February 11, 2016

Mayor Don Iveson has officially proclaimed Feb 29, 2016 as “LEAP Day” for the City of Edmonton - a day dedicated to personal and professional growth where citizens can recharge, reset and refocus in order to achieve their goals!

Edmonton – In recognition of Project Shine Inc.’s transformative event Experience: LEAP, taking place at Northlands Expo Centre on Feb 29, 2016, Mayor Iveson has officially declared Feb 29th as “LEAP Day” in Alberta’s capital city. The city of Edmonton has also expressed support by committing to lighting up the high level bridge in orange the night before the event.

In an environment currently overwhelmed with economic uncertainty, downsizing and insecurity, Experience: LEAP offers Albertans the chance to expand their horizons and recalibrate for success. Mayor Iveson states that opportunities like Experience: LEAP “provide a catalyst for making our communities brighter, more collaborative, and hopeful places to live”.

To spark that sense of collaboration and hope, Project Shine Inc., the organization curating Experience: LEAP is rallying the city to participate in “LEAP Day”. On Friday February 11, 2016 from 9am to 5pm in Winston Churchill Square, Project Shine Inc. will be encouraging the citizens of Edmonton to share their stories, “take a LEAP” and pledge to move beyond limitations and fears so they can embrace change and open up to growth. In addition, to launch a much needed shift in perspective and open up new conversations about the future, all upper bowls seats to Experience: LEAP are being offered to students and those who find themselves recently unemployed for only $99. This is a fraction of what the seats are valued at, and represent Project Shine Inc.’s unwavering commitment to the potential that exists within the province.

“I believe that we have the right people, the right community, and the right innovation accelerators to put our province at the forefront of the world! It’s time for the rubber to meet the road, it’s time to take action!” says Monica Lewicki co- creator of Project Shine Inc. She adds “I am by no means suggesting we drastically change the way we live and do business. However, now is the time for us to seek out new perspectives and encourage new and brave thinking.”

About Experience: LEAP

Experience: LEAP (Leadership, Engagement, Authenticity, Passion) is a one-of-a-kind, one day event aimed to help participants recalibrate for success. Five international thought leaders will share the stage as part of a uniquely curated and choreographed experience featuring light, sound and jaw dropping technical effects.

Date: February 29, 2016 Location: Edmonton EXPO Centre (Northlands)
Speakers: Drew Dudley, Jeremy Gutsche, Dr. John Izzo, Amanda Lindhout, Gizmo Williams

To encourage a shift in perspective, solidarity and unwavering hope in Alberta’s future, all upper bowls seats are being offered to students and those who find themselves recently unemployed for only $99.

Tickets and additional information –

About Project Shine Inc.

Project Shine curates experiences to facilitate transformational change, both personally and professionally, with the ultimate goal of changing peoples’ lives. Co-creators Barbara Reppert and Monica Lewicki have a combined 40 years of business and leadership experience, and their own personal stories of overcoming adversity and finding their authentic path.

For more information about Experience: LEAP, speaker interview requests or to connect with Project Shine Inc. please call Monica Lewicki at (780) 868 9451

November 23, 2015

Project Shine presents: “EXPERIENCE: LEAP” - a one day, transformational, personal and professional growth event on Leap Day, February 29, 2016

Edmonton - Once every 4 years the calendar resets itself by adding an extra day, February 29th. We are using this “bonus” day to provide an experience never before seen in Edmonton. Experience: LEAP (Leadership, Engagement, Authenticity, Passion) is a one-of-a-kind event that aims to help attendees recalibrate for success. Meticulously planned details are aimed to surprise and delight attendees - taking the audience away from the expected, out of their comfort zones, and into that often ignored place where they can recalibrate.

LEAP is a “jumping off” point for a more purposeful, deliberate and meaningful life. Inspirational, and international thought leaders will engage everyone in a uniquely curated and choreographed experience, similar to a theatrical show or concert. Experience: LEAP is produced by Project Shine; an organization that aims to curate experiences for facilitating transformational change both personally and professionally.

We are in a new and complex world with uncertainty surrounding our economy and safety. The anxiety and frustration surrounding this uncertainty forces all of us to search for new solutions that will provide hope and inspiration. Experience: LEAP is a perfect opportunity to refocus and be inspired to rise to new challenges.

Experience Details:
  • Date: February 29, 2016
  • Experience Bubble open: 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Theatre open: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Location: Edmonton EXPO Centre (Northlands)
  • Cost: Tickets are available now for $399-$499 and include: storytellers, surprises, interactive components, parking, lunch and cash bar cocktail reception. To purchase tickets, visit:
Speakers/Storytellers Include:
  • Jeremy Gutsche
  • Drew Dudley
  • Amanda Lindhout (unavailable for media)
  • Henry “Gizmo” Williams
  • Dr. John Izzo

About Project: Shine Inc.

Project Shine is the organization curating and producing Experience: LEAP. Barbara Reppert and Monica Lewicki, who have a combined 40 years business experience in leadership, quit their corporate leadership roles to start something that matters to them. Project Shine curates experiences to facilitate transformational change, both personally and professionally, with the ultimate goal to change peoples’ lives.

Barbara and Monica founded Project Shine in early 2015. Both women have their own personal stories of overcoming adversity, and for years they have travelled the path “expected of them”. They have now chosen to break the mold of business and innovate in an environment of uncertainty to help others find their authentic path too.

Barbara Reppert Quotes

“We’re not calling it a conference because we don’t like the images that word conjures up; registration lines, lanyards and swag bags with success being 1-2 good takeaways that don’t get implemented. Experience: LEAP is an experience - a catalyst for transformational change, which will keep you on your toes and make you truly feel. It will help you find focus and purpose in your professional and personal lives. Experience: LEAP will be the first day of the rest of your life.”

“Alberta is a cyclical place - our economy goes up and down. We never know exactly what it will do either, but history has taught us that at some point, the highs turn into lows and vice versa. Lows aren’t bad though, just different. They give us a chance to think and plan, and ensure that we’re ready for the next updraft. Experience: LEAP will help people to reset and refocus, getting ready for what’s next.”

For more information about Experience: LEAP, or to book an interview with an Experience: LEAP representative or one of the speakers, contact:

Justin Archer

Jeremy Gutsche

Jeremy Gutsche is a New York Times best-selling author and award-winning innovation expert. He is one of the most requested keynote speakers on the planet, and the founder of, the world’s #1 most popular trend website. Prior to Trend Hunter, Jeremy grew a $1 billion portfolio for a bank and today; over 300 brands, billionaires and CEOs rely on his unique expertise to find better ideas faster.

Before his dot-com success, Jeremy studied innovation at Stanford, completed an MBA from Queen’s University, became a Chartered Financial Analyst, and graduated as a Chancellor Scholar from The University of Calgary, where he was later awarded Graduate of the Decade. He is routinely sourced by the media, from The Economist to CNN, and Entertainment Tonight to The New York Times.

Drew Dudley

A born storyteller with infectious energy, Drew revels in “lollipop moments” - when something you’ve done has made someone else’s life fundamentally better. “Leadership”, he explains, “should be about how many lollipop moments you can acknowledge and share every day.”

Drew helps us understand leadership in a more nuanced, practical, and entirely hopeful way. “We’ve made leadership into something bigger than us,” Drew says, “something beyond us. We’ve shrouded it in arrogance - turned it into something few of us will publicly admit to possessing. Leadership is now about changing the world and nothing less.” But Drew, who has spoken at TEDx Toronto and other high profile venues, has other ideas. As the founder and director of one of the largest leadership development programs in North America, he embraces the idea that leadership can’t really be taught, only learned - an idea that has resonated with thousands of people over the years.

Drew has helped raise millions of dollars as the Founder or Chair of several organizations dedicated to supporting scholarship funds, social entrepreneurship, and charitable initiatives. During his tenure as the National Chair of Canada’s largest fundraiser for post-secondary students, Shinerama: Students Fighting Cystic Fibrosis, Drew and his team broke numerous fundraising records. Now the Founder and Chief Catalyst of Nuance Leadership Inc., he works with dozens of corporations, charities, non-profits, universities, colleges, and other organizations around the world to empower people to increase their leadership capacity.

Amanda Lindhout

As Founder and Executive Director of The Global Enrichment Foundation (GEF), Amanda Lindhout has gained international acclaim for her work supporting development and aid in Somalia – the country where she once spent 460 days as a hostage. Her award-winning humanitarian work has provided aid and education to over 300,000

people living in the war-torn country. Amanda’s story of survival in the face of lost hope illustrates the remarkable strength of the human spirit. In 2008, Amanda Lindhout traveled to Somalia as a freelance journalist to research a story on the millions of people affected by two decades of war, drought, and famine. Kidnapped by teenage criminals outside of the capital city, Mogadishu, Amanda spent 460 days enduring unimaginable hardships as a hostage in one of the world’s poorest countries.

Following her release in November 2009, she became an unlikely and passionate advocate for the people of Somalia. Four months after returning home, Amanda founded the Global Enrichment Foundation (GEF) to ignite leadership in Somalia through education and economic initiatives, which the GEF creates, funds and implements. Since the GEF’s inception, Amanda has raised millions of dollars to support development and aid in the war-torn country reaching over 300,000 people. She captured international headlines again when she returned to Somalia to lead famine relief efforts in 2011.

Amanda advises international governments, global leaders, non-profit organizations, and policy makers on the importance of using education to counter the radicalization of youth and provide insight into the interrelated issues of poverty and violence against women. Her work has attracted the likes of President Bill Clinton who invited her to speak in Washington about her organization’s work.

Amanda has been featured in publications including Vogue, O Magazine, ELLE, The New York Time Magazine and The Globe and Mail and appeared on Dateline NBC, The Today Show, Anderson Cooper 360, CNN, Sanjay Gupta MD, NBC Nightly News, BBC, MSNBC, CBC’s The National, Radio Canada International, and a variety of other TV and radio programs both domestic and international.

Amanda’s memoir, A House In The Sky, is a New York Times best seller and is slated for development as a major motion picture with Annapurna Pictures. Oscar nominated actress Rooney Mara is set to produce and star in the film.

Dr. John Izzo

What are the secrets to highly engaged teams and highly engaged companies? Why do some leaders consistently create highly engaged associates?

Dr. John Izzo has spent a lifetime researching what separates truly passionate, high engagement teams and leaders from the rest of the pack. In this keynote, John shares the four keys to creating high engagement teams and shows why some leaders are consistently able to get high levels of commitment from people. John gives the audience day-to-day practices for how leaders can immediately drive engagement for better results.

Organizations with high levels of employee engagement are significantly more profitable, have much higher customer loyalty, stronger productivity and a better reputation with customers than those with moderate engagement. In fact, the average highly engaged team member can be up to 40% more productive than a disengaged performer.

Based on his work with many of the best workplaces in the world, John shows leaders how to implement simple disciplines and routines guaranteed to create highly engaged teams.Your leaders will not only see their role in driving engagement but will leave with ideas they can implement right away that will lead to significantly higher engagement.

John has a great track record of getting leaders to become engagement champions. He’ll empower the audience with a leadership checklist to show leaders the most important things to do everyday to drive engagement and ultimately profits.

Henry “Gizmo” Williams

The greatest kick returner in pro football, Henry “Gizmo” Williams played his final game October 28, 2000. Born May 5, 1963 in Memphis, Tennessee, Henry thrilled Eskimo fans for 14 seasons and leaves behind a legacy of records that will likely never be broken. Henry worked tirelessly in the community throughout his career and in 1999 was honoured with the Eskimo Community Services Award. He was inducted into the CFL Hall of Fame in 2006.

Henry Williams attended East Carolina University and played briefly with the USFL’s Memphis Showboats before joining the Edmonton Eskimos in 1986. His skills caused the CFL to create a ‘Designated Import’ spot on each team’s roster to allow for a game-breaking specialist. No one else broke open games like Williams through 14 seasons with the Edmonton Eskimos.

In 149 regular season games Henry, affectionately know as “Gizmo”, returned 26 punts for touchdowns, including 5 in one season, to set CFL records. He also returned 3 kickoffs and 2 missed field goals for touchdowns, added 21 touchdown passes as a receiver and another on a running play. Undersized but speedy, he often punctuated his touchdowns with end zone back flips.

Henry spent the 1989 season with the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles and rejoined the Eskimos in 1990. At the time of his retirement in 2000, Williams was the CFL’s All-Time leader in punt returns (1,003), Punt return yardage (11,177 yards), Kickoff returns (335) And Kickoff-return yardage (7,354). He amassed 23,927 All-purpose yards in his career.

Henry made 14 post-season appearances, playing in 22 playoff games and 5 Grey Cup games. In the 1987 Grey Cup he set a record by returning a missed field goal 115 yards for a touchdown. In 2002, he was inducted into the North West Mississippi Junior College Hall of fame and became a member of the Eskimo Wall of Honour that same year.

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