Job Title: Chief Operating Officer, Startup Edmonton
Why She’s Top 40: She helps foster a community where local entrepreneurs can develop their ideas; she also strives to make Edmonton a safer, more comfortable place for people suffering from various forms of abuse, addiction and poverty.
Guilty Pleasure: “Cheese. The stronger the taste, the better. Give me Gorgonzola, blue Stilton, extra-old cheddar, Manchego, and I’m a happy person.”
After years of volunteering for the local tech enterprising company, Startup Edmonton, Tiffany Linke-Boyko was hired on as Chief Operating Officer. The organization expanded in 2011 and she was invited to the team because her logical, organized skillset was the perfect foil to the team’s creative, compulsive culture.
Startup Edmonton was founded in 2009 – Cam Linke, Tiffany’s brother, was one of the co-founders – as a community hub for local entrepreneurs to network and have a place to work on their creative ventures. It was originally focused on tech startups (apps, websites and the like) but has since branched out to include organizations from across the spectrum.
Since she assumed her current position, Linke-Boyko has produced all of Startup’s events, from various casual one-off events to the far more structured TEDxEdmonton presentations. She also sits on the Board of Directors of the Edmonton Dream Centre, a Christian-based live-in recovery centre for women who suffer from addiction, poverty and other serious crises.
“Women live in the centre for six to 18 months, giving them the opportunity to really create patterns of change,” explains Linke-Boyko. “It’s a mixture of governance and hands-on … One day I’m planning fundraising events and volunteering on site, and the next I’m working on [the organization’s] policies.”
In March 2014, she was, along with 17 other community leaders and visionaries, invited by Mayor Don Iveson to be a part of the Poverty Elimination Task Force. The group was conceived to develop a realistic plan to end poverty in Edmonton within a generation.
“It’s a pretty daunting task, because there are so many different elements of poverty,” says Linke-Boyko, “but there are so many different perspectives within the group … I think we’re going to be able to make a real difference.”