About Karen

The fun stuff:

Karen grew up in a family that often found themselves in interesting places and spaces. When she was five, Karen’s parents packed their children up, moved to Europe, bought a cherry red VW van with a pop-up top, and started to explore. On those adventures, Karen learned how to camp anywhere, eat anything, read signs in any language, and the ever important skill of peeing on the side of a road. Most of all, she learned that the world is a very big, interesting, and waiting-to-be-explored place.

Her taste for adventure continued as a teenager, when she temporarily abandoned her University education and set off with a backpack and $500 … for four months of trains and hostels and hitchhiking in Europe. She came home with 50 cents in her pocket and a lifetime of memories.

Like almost everyone must, she did grow up and become a responsible adult …

Karen is a faculty member at Conestoga College’s Business School, teaching leadership and social innovation courses to tomorrow’s leaders. She is also the co-founder and principal of The Talent Business Solutions, a Waterloo start-up focused on delivering strategic management support to help businesses grow, compete, and embrace change. Her focus is always on developing the capacity of others – her students, a non-profit community organization, or an emerging high tech company.

A former Waterloo City Councillor, Karen has served as a board member for several local organizations including Waterloo North Hydro, St. Mary’s General Hospital, The Clay and Glass Gallery, and the Button Factory. She is currently the chair of the board for two local organizations: The Waterloo Public Library and Community Justice Initiatives, a local not for profit focused on restorative justice practices.

Now, back to the fun.

Karen loves to travel. She loves to travel with friends and family. Most of all, she is a solo wanderer, forever on the look out for interesting places and spaces in which to think about life, people watch, drink wine, eat cheese, and take beautiful photos.

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