The Regional Municipality of Durham

News Release

Building Business Forum inspires entrepreneurship in north Durham

WHITBY, ON October 12, 2017

Yesterday, The Regional Municipality of Durham, in partnership with the townships of Brock, Scugog and Uxbridge, hosted the sixth-annual North Durham Building Business Forum (BBF). This annual event brought business leaders together to inspire new ideas, make strategic connections, and strengthen the local economy. The half-day conference was held at Blackstock Recreation Complex in Scugog, and featured business representatives from north Durham.

“North Durham presents unique opportunities when it comes to attracting and retaining businesses,” said Kathy Weiss, Director of Economic Development and Tourism for Durham Region. “In addition to business opportunities, these municipalities also strive to inspire and support entrepreneurship, and build a stronger rural and small-town identity.”

Members of the Durham Region business community were invited to attend the forum to share success stories, build connections and learn about entrepreneurship. The event featured local business owners from north Durham who took the stage to share tips about how they have achieved success. The theme this year was “Making it on Main Street.” Business owners shared their experiences about how they have grown to be successful in their small towns; collaboration that illustrates business attraction, retention and expansion need to remain as one the area’s highest priorities.

Key speakers—including Mike Gibbs from Branching Out Florists and Jingles Gift Shop and Women’s Clothing Store; Arthur Field from Nexus Coffee Company; Lianne Megarry from Dark Horse Studio; and Mila Haynos from Lavender Blu—inspired the audience with their stories about how to build a successful business in north Durham.

“Now in its sixth year, the Building Business Forum continues to engage individuals, creating a more integrated and innovative community,” said Nancy Rutherford, Manager of Agriculture and Rural Affairs for Durham Region. “North Durham has so much to offer, and this can help attract and retain individuals, both locally and from outside the area, to work and live in rural Durham Region.”

As always, the We CARE for Business trade show was there to help:

·         Create new business ideas.

·         Attract new investment to our region.

·         Retain our existing business base through funding opportunities, and employment support.

·         Expand business initiatives.

The North Durham Building Business Forum was organized by the Economic Development Advisory Committees of the townships of Brock, Scugog and Uxbridge. These committees work with township and Regional staff on economic development activities for north Durham.

For more information on rural economic development initiatives in Durham Region, visit, or sign up for the Agriculture and Rural Affairs e-newsletter by emailing

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For more information, please contact Corporate Communications.