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Creative Mornings Vancouver with speaker Sandy Garossino

“The essence of creativity is originality….[creativity] plays a role in civilization, history and the creation of culture. [it is] primal and elemental to how humans operate.” -- Sandy Garossino

On July 6, 2012, a group of several hundred assembled at the W2 Media Café to hear speaker Sandy Garossino discuss the role of creativity in the corporate community as well as address and define Vancouver’s spirit of creativity. Garossino’s discussion is part of Creative Mornings, a free monthly breakfast lecture series for creative types.

Garossino is the founder and CEO of Intellex Legal Project Management Inc., a provider of contract legal services to corporate counsel and law firms. A lawyer by training and owner of various businesses in the transportation and publishing industries, Garossino is also a talent discoverer, arts advocate and 2011 City Council candidate.

The twenty-minute lecture began with Garossino’s comments on how society views creativity as a side thought. In response, Garossino believes that creativity and artistic endeavors are “sustenance to the human spirit and critical to how we conduct ourselves…it is art and creativity that can telescope time and take us to another world."

Showing various images and examples from the past, Garossino emphasizes how Vancouver is a young city. Comparing it to places like New York, Mumbai, and Florence, Garossino believes that Vancouver has yet to find a defined sense of identity and clear legacy. Encouraging the audience and deeming them as creative workers, Garossino believes that is their role “to be channels and vessels of the human spirit. [Fostering creativity] is what we must do to have [a]civilization that survives.” 

One of the ways in which Garossino believes is a solution to Vancouver’s lost sense of identity is the recognition of the other. She says, “I think a lot of Vancouver is that the dominant theme of our culture has left a lot of people out. [Asians and women] have been the other…if there’s anything that I can hope for [is that as] Vancouver develops, as we go forward, as we build a city…we get all our voices [heard].”

Indeed, creativity is at the heart of Garossino’s lecture, but it is also a prominent theme throughout the Creative Mornings lecture series. Mark Busse, organizer for the Vancouver chapter of Creative Mornings has set a mandate to highlight and promote Vancouver as a world class creative city. Referencing Richard Florida and his urban theories, Busse states “Future economies require creativity and innovation. Certain cities have emerged as “creative class” cities [and] we want to demonstrate that [Vancouver is] a multicultural hub. We can use Creative Mornings as a platform to show the world the creative power and community that makes up this city”.

And while speakers like Garossino share about creativity in the corporate community, Creative Mornings is host to many other speakers addressing various topics. Past speakers include Jessica Hische, a letterer, illustrator and graphic designer as well as Bob Kronbauer, founder of

A different sponsor hosts each series and while appearing in front of an engaged and captivated audience is appealing to many companies, picking a sponsor is almost just as hard as picking a speaker. Busse and the Creative Mornings team is constantly seeking to partner the event with companies that are making an impact in the city by fostering a culture of creativity and identifies creativity and innovation at the core of what they do. Companies such as Hootsuite, Capic, Langara College and Arc’teryx are previous event sponsors. 

What makes Creative Mornings a popular event in Vancouver and around the globe is the type of discourse and what Busses described as “an intimate feeling of community”. Unlike other speaker / lecture series, Creative Mornings procures speakers to speak more about the way in which creativity needs to be broader, taking in diverse opinions from a variety of disciplines and less about individual work and self-promotion. And even more unlike other events, Creative Mornings is completely free. The challenge, as Creative Mornings grows increasingly popular is maintaining its integrity.

“There’s a lot of passionate people in Vancouver [but there] needs to be more of a pragmatic and practical approach to creativity... It’s [less] about passion and more about getting to work. Stop whining about what we don’t have and celebrate what we do have," said Busse.

Watch Previous Creative Mornings Vancouver talks

The next Creative Mornings takes place on August 3, with speaker Omer Arbel, medal designer for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Visit for more information.


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