Emterra CEO Emmie Leung Recognized for Entrepreneurial Excellence
Winnipeg, MB (April 8, 2013) - Emmie Leung, CEO and founder of Emterra Group received the highest honour, the 2013 Entrepreneur of the Year Award, from her peers at the Association of Chinese Canadian Entrepreneurs (ACCE) during a gala presentation event held in Markham, Ontario on March 23.
The award recognizes corporate leaders in the Chinese Canadian community who have achieved success through business acumen and innovation, making a contribution to the Canadian economy as well as to the social infrastructure of community life.
The ACCE, now in its 17th year, is a Canada-wide organization that promotes entrepreneurship in the Chinese Canadian community to strengthen their competitiveness in the global market.
Michael McGhee, vice-president of TD Commercial Banking presented the award on behalf of the ACCE. He said Leung had been selected from among hundreds of nominations for her “clear focus on the key principles of the entrepreneurial spirit” as well as for “innovation, operating success, service quality, strong corporate citizenship and management excellence.”
In accepting the award, Leung said she was both “touched and overwhelmed to receive this prestigious award. I know it is not bestowed lightly, and that it is held in great esteem by those who receive it.”
She described how, as a child growing up in a traditional family in southern China, she dreamed of being free to pursue her dreams and that when she stepped off a plane in Winnipeg on a chilly morning in 1972 she wondered if she’d stepped into a “big freezer.”
She added that “Weatherwise, Canada is a cold country but it is a warm country at heart. As a Canadian, I am grateful to Canada for giving me the freedom to act upon my dreams.”
Leung described the development of her recycling company as a “great life adventure”, noting that despite all of the peaks and valleys of business life, it has been an “endeavour worth committing my life to because I profoundly believe that we, as a society, must not be wasteful, that we must be frugal and that we must strive to live zero waste lives.”
Crediting her success to her employees, customers and her family, Leung said that it is because of their ongoing support that she has been able to work hard to build her business.
“Because of my commitment to working hard, and the sheer joy I derive out of being involved in this business, I’ve been bestowed a much loved nickname…the dragon lady! I love it. I’m proud of it. In the Chinese culture, the dragon is a symbol of strength, of good fortune and of longevity. The nickname reminds me that with such attributes, I can always find the way forward.”
Emterra Group operates three Canadian divisions: Emterra Environmental, which collects, processes and markets waste resources in more than 80 Canadian communities, serving 10% of the Canadian population; Emterra Tire Recycling, which collects and recycles scrap tires; and Canadian Liquids Processors Limited, which converts waste liquids and consumer beverages into highly sought after industrial grade ethanol.
Emterra also operates Emterra Environmental USA which provides waste disposal and recycling services to 50 municipalities and counties in mid-Michigan.
Each year, Emterra markets more than 500,000 tonnes of recyclables selling approximately 70% to North American markets.