Lianne Hannaway is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CA, CPA), working in Toronto, Ontario. She was born Winnipeg; raised in Mississauga, lived in Paris, France but her roots go back to the Caribbean. Lianne has built an expertise in Finance Transformation & Operations at KPMG, TMX Group and now as COO & CFO of Talent X.
Talent X is an organization founded to increase access to the tech sector for historically underrepresented talent communities by providing industry-relevant training, critical research, and networking opportunities.
Lianne is also in the process of building her accounting, tax and wealth management firm for passionate freelancers, entrepreneurs and professionals.
Lianne is a trusted strategic advisor and volunteer board member to a variety of local organizations. Having grown up in a strong single-parent household and in community-assisted housing, volunteering is one way she shows a sense of gratitude for her upbringing and the need to return the favour. She currently volunteers her time with on the Board of Governors of Humber College and as Treasurer to the Black Professionals in Tech Network.
ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS
I provide accounting and tax services to passionate freelancers, entrepreneurs and professionals. I use cloud-based technology to build accounting processes and create an efficient & effective service experience. This streamlined process allows me to focus on the strategic side of the business: to provide my customers the right advice, at the right time, so that they can make the right decisions to grow the business and their wealth.
WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO START YOUR BUSINESS?
“When you learn, teach, when you get, give.” – Maya Angelou.
I have learned a few things in my journey through this life from the unique perspective of being a first-generation Black Canadian professional woman raised by parents who immigrated from the Caribbean. I’m motivated to educate badass women on how to build WEALTH, master DEBT and invest SAVINGS to live the life they LOVE. I’m also motivated (and slightly terrified) by the opportunities presented by being an entrepreneur and working on my passions.
WHAT IS THE VISION FOR YOUR BUSINESS IN THE NEXT 5 YEARS?
In the next 5 years, I would like to build a Venture Capital firm focused on investing in businesses led by underrepresented entrepreneurs, particularly women of colour. Today, less than 17%, 1% and 0.2% of venture capital go to Women, People of Colour, and Black Women, respectively. In my experience, these underrepresented groups are underestimated and undervalued; however, exemplify grit by doing more with less. Even studies have shown that diverse teams have stronger business outcomes and more innovative ideas. Targeting capital, knowledge, and access to these underrepresented groups is a big opportunity for investment.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR FIRST EXPERIENCE AT A MANYATTA EVENT
I don’t remember which was my very first event as I have been going to Manyatta events since 2016 but I do remember feeling welcomed. I met a lot of new people and got an opportunity to practice my French language skills that were atrophying. My biggest memory was the Manyatta Cares event of that year. The event was done so wonderfully – both the speakers and the after-party were powerful 😊.
WHAT SHOULD WE KNOW ABOUT YOU PERSONALLY
I play volleyball at least once a week. It’s my needed competitive outlet. I play middle but prefer right side.
I speak French fluently. My mom put both my brother and I in French immersion as pre-schoolers in Winnipeg. The city boasts the largest French-speaking population outside of Quebec.
I love to travel with some notable visits being New Zealand, Japan, France, Jamaica and Barbados.
WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT?
After completing more professional experience requirements to obtain my CPA designation, I decided to more to Paris, France on an international secondment. Except for some visits in Trinidad, a had never been off the North American continent and hadn’t travelled much in general – let alone lived this far away from anyone I knew. The experience of moving, learning and integrating into another culture with another language was humbling, eye-opening and life-changing. It taught me a lot about my ability to change, about my parents’ immigration journey and what it means to be Canadian.
HOW CAN INDIVIDUALS SUPPORT YOUR INITIATIVES?
I am always looking to connect with entrepreneurs from the African diaspora that are doing great things for their customers and communities. I can be reached on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram; however, I do prefer a good old-fashioned email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WHERE CAN PEOPLE FIND YOU ONLINE?
BFuTR National Summit - October 25, 2019 (Launching May 2, 2019)
For the first time in Canadian history, over 1000+ Black professionals will come together to learn, build the future and facilitate opportunities in the tech sector in Downtown Toronto. The inaugural summit will bring together high profiled keynotes, sessions covering trending topics sourced directly from industry, and intentional networking, fashioned to AfroTech in the US.