11 Women Leaders in New Brunswick

New Brunswick is home to some amazing female entrepreneurs leading their companies to success. Read about women making an impact in New Brunswick.

“There are barriers that prevent women from entering their entrepreneurial journey, such as the years spent raising children and the lack of additional support during school years. Often, women feel that by the time their children are in high school, it is too late to enter a new field or leave the comfort of their current career. Unfortunately, many women with fantastic ideas may never see them come to fruition due to these barriers.” ~ Kryspn from Life Start Training

As we celebrate International Women's Day, it's essential to spotlight the remarkable female entrepreneurs shaping the landscape of business in New Brunswick. From innovative startups to thriving enterprises, these trailblazing women exemplify resilience, creativity, and determination.

“Besides the great quality of life that the Maritimes offer, we feel that momentum is growing in this place, with more people coming into the Atlantic provinces and new opportunities developing here every day.” ~ Saltwinds Coffee

Inge, Germaine, Nikki and Sophie

Gallery 78

Fredericton, NB

I am Nikki, and I manage Gallery 78 as the third generation of women leading our family business. My grandmother, Inge, pursued her passion for the arts by opening Gallery 78 when there was no private or commercial space in New Brunswick for artists to sell their work. My mother, Germaine, and I have both worked at the gallery when it came time and now my sister Sophie has stepped into my spot while I am on maternity leave. What motivates us is the desire to promote the artists right here in Atlantic Canada with people worldwide and to help beautify people’s spaces with art. There is so much talent, passion, and dedication in this corner of the world, and it’s truly an honour to share them with our clientele and tourists who visit the gallery.

“It is a beautiful thing to see that many galleries we know and work with are run by women. I think, especially at Gallery 78, where we are family but also all women, there is something very special about that.”

We are close and get along well, so working together produces a magical synergy. Artists enjoy collaborating with us, and clients report great satisfaction and ease when dealing with us. We believe creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere in our physical and online spaces is very important.

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Nadine Godin

Nadine V Godin Artiste

Neguac, NB

My Name is Nadine Godin, and I have been in business for 25 years now as the owner of Boutique ́sû’ Nadine fabrics shop and a visual artist painter. Since 2017, my work as an artist has made a jump after exposing my art at “la F.A.V.A” in Caraquet. Since then, I have been selling paintings. My dream would be to be successful enough to make a living as an artist; it is just at the tip of my paintbrush.

I am best known for my distinctive and rustic style, rich in vibrant colours and sophistication. Inspiration for my work comes from my native province’s folklore and culture, bordered by the Atlantic Ocean and scattered with fishing villages.

“When people see my paintings, I hope they recognize in their way the warm feeling of a sweet memory, of belonging, of a peaceful moment.”

I paint to touch the soul through the eyes. I want my art to touch the hearts of more people around the world. My new website and showcase endeavours at events such as the FAVA, the Quai des artistes, and Turner’s Christmas at the Coliseum have allowed great exposure of my art to enthusiasts around the world and facilitated sales of prints and original canvases on a larger scale.


Kate Zazzara

Rooted Woven Art

Saint Martins, NB

Born in South Africa but raised in Canada. Living in a pink Victoria house on the Bay of Fundy with my three daughters, life was already busy before I started my business. When I began weaving five years ago, I fell in love with the fibre arts and wanted to push myself to see how much I could do. After a year of weaving, I explored spinning and making the yarn myself. Now, with complete control of the colours, thickness and texture, I can make any creation I desire while recycling my yarn for future projects.

“I reuse and respin all my own and other scraps of Fibre and fabric into new yarn which I then weave with, truly making one-of-a-kind Woven tapestries.”

I have now expanded to have a floor loom that allows me to make anything my imagination can produce. My online store has expanded so much in these past few years that I am not only selling my wall hangings and art but also all kinds of yarn, cord, fibre, and string that any crafter would ever need. When I first started, I never thought I could grow to be able to support all these kinds of products, and I cannot wait to see how we will keep expanding.


Laura Richard

Saltwinds Coffee

Douglas, NB

Coffee used to come to the Maritimes on wooden sailing ships and the salty ocean air would transform the coffee beans by infusing the coffee to be smoother, richer, and less bitter. We recreated this coffee and brought it to the Garrison Night Market in Fredericton for the first time in 2022, and it sold out every week. People went crazy for it. In 2023, we entered an international championship in El Salvador and took 3rd place. So, based on all that excitement, we decided to leave our jobs and launch Saltwinds Coffee into the waves, and we have been on a journey of rapid growth and learning ever since.

“When I sell a bag of coffee to a consumer, I see their face llight up with excitement. For some people, it’s as simple as a daily cup of coffee that reminds them of the summer holidays at the beach. It’s an honour to be able to bring such simple moments of joy into people's lives every day.”

I was recently honoured with a nomination to Atlantic Business Magazine’s Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Business list for 2024. I’m trying to build something impactful, and I hope that along the way, I can create good jobs, nurture meaningful business relationships, and spread the story of the Maritimes and the magic of this place (and its wonderful ocean air) far and wide.


Sophie Nadeau Becker & Mélanie Nadeau

Ohlala... de Sophie Pet Market Inc.

Edmundston, NB

Ohlala de Sophie Pet Market Inc. is our thriving family business that began with Sophie, an ambitious 11-year-old whose heartfelt gesture of baking dog treats during the pandemic took place. Our business quickly gained popularity among pet owners in the region and beyond. What started as a simple act of kindness swiftly evolved into a family venture supported by mother, Melanie, and brother, Felix. Based in northwestern New Brunswick, Ohlala de Sophie is renowned for our premium healthy pet treats and stylish accessories, crafted with love and care, using locally sourced, eco-friendly ingredients and packaging.

“As a women-owned enterprise, exemplifying the strength and resilience of female entrepreneurship, we champion sustainability and prioritize eco-conscious practices.”

Our commitment extends to youth empowerment, offering hands-on experiences and coaching in all aspects of the manufacturing business. Through innovation and compassion, Ohlala de Sophie stands as a testament to the power of family, community, and dedication to quality, leaving a positive impact on all pet families.


Marcia Poirier

Wildabout Wampum

Moncton, NB

This path as an artist has been in my heart since I was a child. It’s the hardest but most fulfilling work I’ve ever done. I design pieces to give people strength and courage in everyday life.

“After 20 years of pursuing my passion, I’m learning that confidence is the key to a successful business.”

Creative since my youth, I began creating quahog shell jewelry by chance. While beachcombing, I spotted the shape of a heart in the colouring of a shell I plucked from a beach in New Brunswick. I carved it out with only the crude tools and wore it as a pendant. Requests from others for pieces of their own led to a four-year search for better processes and better tools to sculpt the rock-hard shell. ​Only later did I learn that I was making “Wampum,” and that it was an all-but-lost art dating back hundreds of years. Today, I share my love of shells with others through sales of my Wampum jewelry while continuously designing new and ever-more-stunning pieces.


Marsha Vicaire

Be Heard Beadwork

Dieppe, NB

Be Heard Beadwork first gained an online presence during the summer of 2020 from growing interest from family and friends in my beaded creations. Through my business, I am fortunate to share my creativity with the world and to connect with others through my beaded creations. I have always loved creating through beading, and it is one way that helps me remain grounded and connected with community, culture and family.

“As an Indigenous business owner, I hope that the space I hold will broaden the representation of female Indigenous entrepreneurs, especially for future generations. I hope that Be Heard Beadwork helps to empower and motivate others to pursue the work they love and potentially venture into starting their own business.”

I am always striving to perfect my beading skills and, subsequently, every beaded creation I make. I consider each of my beaded pieces to be infused with traditional knowledge, cultural resurgence, and strength. So, there is a humbling sense of joy when a customer finds one of my beaded pieces that speaks to them. There is a personal fulfillment from starting your own business. Since Be Heard Beadwork developed unexpectedly, entrepreneurship has been a new endeavour for me. There is so much to learn from starting a business, but I have found the learning process rewarding and empowering. My goal is for Be Heard Beadwork to be recognized as a brand that empowers others and evokes positive change.


Geneviève Nolet


Moncton, NB

I ventured into entrepreneurship driven by the desire to bring something new, innovative and aligned with my values. I felt New Brunswick was fertile ground, and it solidified my decision to establish a Nordic spa in Moncton. The drive to make a positive impact in the community by providing a space to disconnect, relax, and recharge remains my inspiration on this entrepreneurial journey. I view challenges as opportunities for learning and personal growth.

“I believe female entrepreneurs enrich the business landscape by bringing different perspectives, skills and approaches. I find incredible support within our community and countless opportunities for collaboration.”


Khryspn Jensen

Life Start Training

Saint John, NB

I found a passion in teaching and wanted to change the perception of first aid training. By keeping first aid topics relatable and more light-hearted, it helped to ease people's fears about first aid. Adding a bit of humour and fun into each training session changes how people perceive first aid and their willingness to help. I feel that I am making an impact when I receive review after review, saying that we are fun and interactive. We strive to have the best instructors teaching our methods because that's how people learn—by doing and making mistakes. We want you to make mistakes in the classroom; this is where learning and retention begin.

“A recent study we did with Mitacs highlighted how our retention rates are higher than the industry average. I believe it's how we teach and make each class as interactive as possible. All of that fuels my passion and keeps me motivated.”

There is fairly strong support for women in New Brunswick from other women. I have met many women who are passionate about supporting other women-led businesses and are willing to offer support wherever they can. However, New Brunswick still has a long way to go to increase inclusivity for women, encourage more women-led businesses, and help build their confidence to take the risk of owning their own businesses.


Dawn Frowley

Baked Candle Co

Beaubassin East, NB

A quote from Sheryl Sandberg has inspired me as a woman entrepreneur.

“I want every little girl who’s been told she’s bossy to be told again she has leadership skills.”

I feel this because this was me! It wasn’t until I was in a leadership role that I realized being “bossy” isn’t a negative thing at all. A man would’ve been told he’s determined, ambitious, and a strong leader, but a woman is “bossy.” Together, we CAN change the narrative and free the world of bias, stereotypes, and discrimination.

It’s inspiring to see just how many female entrepreneurs are changing the landscape of the small business world. The majority of the retailers that carry our products are female-owned, and even a decade ago, I’m not sure that would’ve been the case. It’s encouraging to see the diversity and equality that the future promises.

I am a mom to 3 active little kiddos and have an amazingly supportive family rooting me on from the sidelines. I want my daughter to grow up believing that she can do anything she puts her mind to.

Profile Photo credits: Alexandria from Radiant Photography


Karen Collins-Larter

Lavender Moon Farm

Malden, NB

At Lavender Moon Farm, we are passionate about growing a variety of high-quality lavender and providing our customers with unique lavender-based products. Our family-run farm is located in the beautiful and quaint countryside of Malden, New Brunswick. Our dreams of becoming lavender farmers grew from our love of the plant itself and a desire to build something from the ground up. Spending time outside, in the dirt, at our favourite place is what we consider to be the perfect way to spend a day! Our goal is to continue to provide our customers with the highest quality of lavender and its products so they can enjoy the same benefits of lavender that we do.

We actually started the farm in 2020 as a female-owned and operated farm. I operate year-round via the website and am active all across the Maritimes at various artisan craft shows. Weekends are in Pugwash and Shediac. Open seven days a week in July and August. This year's activities will include cut-your-own bouquets, a lavender felted workshop in the field, field rentals for photography sessions, and field yoga sessions.