NSB Logo Arlene Dickinson Arlene Dickinson

Arlene Dickinson


Calgary, Alberta, Canada

On Leadership, Marketing & Business Success: "Dragon" on CBC's Dragons’ Den & General Partner of District Ventures Capital

Arlene Dickinson is the General Partner of District Ventures Capital, a venture capital fund focused on helping market, fund and grow entrepreneurs and their companies, in the food and health space. She is a three-time best-selling author, leader, and accomplished public speaker. Dickinson is widely recognized for her role as a Dragon/Venture Capitalist for over 12 seasons on the multi-award-winning television series, Dragons Den.

Keynote Speeches

Virtual Keynotes & Webinars
Contact us for more information about this speaker & their virtual presentations. Click here for some of the most popular formats for virtual events.

Every one of us will feel stuck at some point in our lives. One day, you recognize that you have followed a path—personal or professional—that suddenly seems closed off or unfulfilling. Whether it’s a relationship that doesn’t connect in the way it used to, or a job that started out being exciting but now feels unrewarding, suddenly you look up from your life and realize there is something else you want to do or to be. You’re ready for a reinvention.

Applying business principles to her personal life helped Dickinson  figure out very quickly where she wanted to go and how to get there. Having a clear set of practical steps to follow kept her on track when emotions threatened to derail her progress.

In Reinvention, Dickinson shares her blueprint for:

  • locating your sense of purpose
  • realistically evaluating your strengths
  • assessing opportunities outside your comfort zone
  • charting a bold new path

Whether you have a big career dream to achieve, or you need to rebuild after a personal setback, this step-by-step plan for reinvention will help you change your own life—for the better.

Lessons from the Den: Succeeding at Business and Being an Entrepreneur

Can anyone be an entrepreneur? Arlene’s emphatic answer is “Yes.” In this talk, one of Canada’s most high profile business women distills a lifetime of experience to reveal everything you need to know—and do—to start, to run, and to grow a great business. On stage, she displays a palpable and infectious belief in the entrepreneurial spirit; she reminds us of the major contributions Canadians have made to international business and the entrepreneurial tradition.


Marketing Yourself

Success is often taken for granted; few stop to think about where it came from, what shaped it, what trials were involved. In this talk, Arlene tells her story, providing a rare look into the making of one of Canada’s most powerful business women. Filled with the key lessons Arlene has learned throughout her journey, this talk is underscored by modesty, grit, and enormous heart.

Leadership and Strategic Marketing

Marketing plays a fundamental role in all businesses—yet it is seldom held accountable the way other departments are. A superstar marketer driven by corporate objectives, Arlene shows us why marketing must be a top concern of leadership, and why creativity and accountability must go hand in hand. Otherwise, why bother with marketing at all? She will help decision-makers grasp the essential strategic function of marketing in an insightful, accessible and frank talk, anchored squarely to the bottom line..

Audience reviews:

  • Arlene Dickinson's personal story was a wonderful way to start the day and her emphasis on dimensions of character that are not often discussed, such as humanity and humility was particularly powerful… In a business school it is important to have great female role models with our speakers and she delivered that in spades.

    - Ivey Business School
  • It was amazing!!!!! Arlene was amazing, people were crying. - Industry Workforce Development Manager, Manitoba Environmental Industries Association (MEIA)

Speaker Biography

Arlene Dickinson is a visionary entrepreneur and leader with a remarkable track record of success. She is the Founder and General Partner of District Ventures Capital, a venture capital fund that invests in innovative companies in the food & beverage and health & wellness sectors. Under her leadership, District Ventures Capital has become a leading force in the industry, with a portfolio of ground-breaking companies that are transforming the way we live and eat.

Dickinson is also the Co-Managing Partner of Believeco:Partners, an independent Canadian-based owner, operator, and builder of the foremost marketing, communications, and engagement agencies in North America. It was Dickinson’s vision that brought this platform to life resulting in the creation of a powerhouse marketing consolidator.

Beyond her business ventures, Dickinson is a sought-after speaker, three-time best-selling author, and philanthropist. She is widely recognized for her role as a Venture Capitalist on the hit television series, Dragons’ Den, where she currently has starred for over 15 seasons.

Dickinson’s leadership and entrepreneurial prowess have earned her numerous accolades over the years, including induction into the Southern Alberta Business Hall of Fame, the Marketing Hall of Legends, recognition as one of Canada’s Most Powerful Women Top 100 Hall of Fame, and the prestigious Queen Elizabeth Diamond and Platinum Jubilee Awards. Dickinson served as an honorary captain of the royal canadian navy for over 10 years visiting our troops overseas numerous times.

With her unwavering commitment to excellence, her passion for innovation, and her deep dedication to her community and country, Arlene Dickinson is a true Canadian icon and a shining example of what can be achieved through hard work, determination, and vision.

On her pride in being Canadian, Arlene Dickinson shares:

“My family immigrated to this land 63 years ago, from South Africa, with nothing but our hopes and 3 small suitcases of belongings. We didn’t understand the cold weather but we did understand the enormous chance we had been given. I was raised to not squander the opportunity, to give back in thanks and to respect the chance to work and be self sufficient. I can’t express how grateful I am to live here and how emotionally connected I feel to this country. I am grateful to the Indigenous Peoples. I am grateful to be taken in. Grateful for the opportunity to live in freedom and peace.”