Past Annual Raj Manek Banquets
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Each year, the Raj Manek Mentorship Program features a large-scale, city-wide banquet of 250 to 350 guests to recognize the contributions of our mentors, celebrate the many accomplishments of our protégés, and to honour the “Above and Beyond Award recipient.

Open to the entire business community and featuring a keynote speaker prominent in the business world, it is one of the city’s premiere events for appreciation and networking. Past keynote speakers include Arlene Dickinson (CEO of Venture Communications), Sean O'Dea (Founder of Second Cup), John Stanton (CEO of Running Room), and Vikram Vij (Canadian chef, cookbook author, and owner of Indian cuisine restaurants).

Also announced at this event is the recipient of the Raj Manek Memorial Prize in Entrepreneurship Award.

The evening, held at one of Saskatoon's prestigious venues, is emceed by our Board Member Paul Martin of Martin Charlton Communications. It is the Program’s only fundraising event of the year.

The 2018 Banquet



Danial Jameel


Danial is the CEO/Founder of OOHLALA Mobile. Prior to OOHLALA he has founded two companies, won numerous national business competition and entrepreneur awards (e.g. BMO Apex, Quebec entrepreneur, Queen's entrepreneur award, Rotman adVenture business competition, NBTC national award). He also had the honor of being selected as Forbes 30 under 30 2015, and an alumni of Ycombinator (Silicon Valley's premier tech start-up program). Danial is also very active in the community and mentors upcoming startups at the Founder's Institute, McGill's X-1 accelerator, and Founderfuel.


OOHLALA Mobile is the leading mobile platform for universities and colleges across North America. Used by over 300 universities in 8 countries, the platform helps campuses better engage students and assess improved outcomes such as retention and persistence. With over 35% of college freshmen dropping out in the US every year, OOHLALA provides a real time intervention tool for colleges to measure student behavior and provide timely support. 




The 2017 Banquet





Steven Woods joined Google in 2008 and has since served as Google Canada’s Senior Engineering Director and site lead for Google’s primary Canadian engineering site in Kitchener-Waterloo. Steven is responsible for building and leading teams in consumer products & services and advertising while fostering a creative culture of innovation, engineering, and aggressive product delivery.

Steven is highly involved in advocacy, mentoring and support as part of the Canadian tech community and serves on the board of Communitech and several Canadian companies.

Earlier, Steven founded several startups in Silicon Valley including NeoEdge Networks - an in-game advertising company; Kinitos - a company dedicated to enabling creation of radically inexpensive and powerful consumer services; and - an interactive voice portal service acquired by American Online/Time Warner in 2000. Steven was a Vice President, Technology at AOL/Netscape from 2000-2002.

Steven holds Ph.D and Masters degrees in Mathematics (Computer Science) from the University of Waterloo - and an undergraduate degree from the University of Saskatchewan. In 2010 Steven was honoured to receive the University of Waterloo’s prestigious J.W. Graham Medal in Computing and Innovation.

The 2016 Banquet



Christine Magee



In 1982, Ms. Magee graduated from the Richard Ivey School of Business in London, Ontario with a BA in Honours Business Administration (HBA). Her first job after university was with Continental Bank as a Commercial Accounts Manager. In 1985 she joined the National Bank of Canada as Senior Manager of Corporate and Commercial Lending.
In October 1994, Ms. Magee co-founded the company with Stephen K. Gunn and Gordon Lownds. By 2004, the company had expanded to 89 stores, with over 600 employees and operations in three provinces. She is on the Board of directors for McDonald’s and Cott Corporation.



The 2015 Banquet



Vikram Vij

Restaurant tycoon, celebrity chef and entrepreneur Vikram Vij was the keynote speaker at the 19th Annual Raj Manek Dinner.

Born in India, Vikram immigrated to Canada in 1989 and started work at the Banff Springs Hotel.

A certified sommelier, Vikram opened his first 14-seat restaurant Vij’s in Vancouver in September 1994, and since then has opened two other restaurants - Rangoli and My Shanti.

Vikram also has a gourmet food truck, and his pre-packaged curries are now available in national grocery chains. Vikram and his wife Meeru have published two cookbooks Vij’s: Elegant & Inspired Indian Cuisine and Vij’s at Home: Relax, Honey.


    15th Annual Raj Manek Banquet Welcome 



  16th Annual Raj Manek Banquet Welcome