Mandy Rennehan (a.k.a. Bear) is called the Blue-Collar CEO™ for her ability to seamlessly navigate between the white- and blue-collar worlds, and to respectfully ‘tell it like it is’. Mandy is a sought-after speaker, multiple award-winning entrepreneur, philanthropist, and trade industry ambassador.
She left her hometown of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, at 18 with a dirty hockey bag and an audacious dream. By 19, she founded Freshco, Canada’s #1, full-service, reconstruction and retail maintenance provider operating across Canada and the eastern United States serving clients like Anthropologie, Apple, Banana Republic, Home Depot, Lululemon, Nike, Restoration Hardware, Sephora, The Gap, Tiffany & Co., plus many more.
Freshco and Mandy have received countless business awards including, Toronto Region Board of Trade Business Leader of the Year, Top 25 Women of Influence, the RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur “Momentum” Award, Growth 500 Excellence in Innovation, (WXN’s) Top 100 Most Powerful Women – Hall of Fame, CGLCC LGBT Business of the Year and Atlantic Business Magazine’s Top 50 CEOs.
Mandy’s vision goes well beyond building successful businesses. She is redefining the collar, blue™ to help solve the massive skilled trade shortage in North America. It is a profound economic and social issue that affects everyone. Consumers are paying more and waiting longer for services, companies aren’t able to scale, and important infrastructure projects, like roads, transit and hospitals are being delayed. Mandy is challenging the misconception that white-collar jobs are “better” or “more desirable” than blue-collar ones. Society needs both collars, and if we do not change this, the crippling effects of the skilled labour shortage will only get worse.
Mandy defies labels. The description she often gets is “refreshing.” Her (respectfully) uncensored honesty is matched by her quick wit, East Coast humour, and big heart. It is impossible to remain unchanged after coming into contact with this authentic, self-taught and self-made powerhouse.