How Cape Breton’s Annette Verschuren conquered the international c-suite

Posted on May 05, 2021 | By Stephen Kimber | 0 Comments

In just a few minutes, I’m supposed to “meet” Annette Verschuren for a Zoom interview. While I wait, I squeeze in some last-minute cram-scanning through my collection of random but related digital research clippings.

Here’s one: a recent CBC News story about the re-launch of the named-for-her Verschuren Centre for Sustainability and the Environment in Sydney, Nova Scotia. The 11-year-old centre had been celebrating its psychic metamorphosis from academic-bureaucratic beginnings inside Cape Breton University to newly nimble status as a “not-for-profit, stand-alone research and technology centre for commercialization of cutting-edge technologies and businesses.”

Verschuren, who is both the executive advisor to the institute and also the chancellor of the university, had explained that the change had been made to give the centre “the flexibility to move fast.”

Wait a minute… I look back at the date: October 28, 2020? In the midst of the pandemic lockdown? The story includes an appropriately physically distanced photo of masked attendees at the event, as well as another image—clearly taken in the same auditorium at the same event—of Verschuren with Beth Mason, the centre’s CEO.

So, Annette Verschuren was there! But how could that be?

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