Barb Stegemann

Top Game Changer CBC's Dragons' Den| CEO and Founder, The 7 Virtues

Barb Stegemann’s entrepreneurial vision was formed after her best friend—a soldier—was severely wounded in Afghanistan. Understanding that supporting Afghanistan’s economy was key to building stability for its people, Stegemann created The 7 Virtues, a company that sources organic, fair trade essential oils from countries experiencing turmoil (such as Afghanistan, Haiti the Middle East and Rwanda). Despite addressing complex global matters in her talks, Stegemann uses humour to explain how individuals can use business for good and effect change, both at home and worlds away.

Barb is made first Female Honorary Colonel at 14 Wing Greenwood

Stegemann became known to millions of Canadians when she became the first woman from Atlantic Canada to land a venture-capital deal on the CBC TV show Dragons’ Den for The 7 Virtues Beauty. She went on to become the "Top Game Changer" in the history of the show for creating her social enterprise.

Since then, Stegemann has been named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada; won the Ernst & Young “Entrepreneur of the Year Award in the emerging Entrepreneur category for Atlantic Canada”; was ranked as one of Profit Guide magazine's "Top 30 Cool and Fabulous Canadian Entrepreneurs"; and was also made the first female Honorary Colonel in the history of 14 Wing Greenwood base, Royal Canadian Air Force.

Barb Stegemann and Mike Velemirovich Barb Stegemann appears on Dragons Den

Barb is photographed with partner Mike Velemirovich after being sworn in as Honorary Colonel for the Royal Canadian Air Force

Barb pitches to the Dragons on
CBC’s Dragons’ Den

As a keynote speaker, Stegemann has opened for Erin Brockovich, and is often invited to moderate panels and attend events as a delegate with world leaders such as Bill Clinton.

She is the author of the bestselling book, The 7 Virtues of a Philosopher Queen, and the subject of the feature-length documentary Perfume War, directed by Michael Melski. The film tells Barb's entrepreneurial story, and has garnered many awards to date, including being named Best Feature Documentary, Atlantic Film Festival; Cineplex Audience Choice, Victoria Film Festival; and Best Humanitarian Film, Sedona Film Festival, Arizona.

A newsmaker, Stegemann has been featured in major media around the world including in the The Wall Street Journal Magazine, The London Sunday Times, The Globe and Mail, The National Post, Tattler, and on CBC, CNN, Bloomberg, and more.

The 7 Virtues fragrances are phthalate free and vegan and are available at the Hudson’s Bay stores across Canada. A new contemporary perfume collection launches in Sephora Stores in Canada in February 2018.

 I am an incredibly grateful Canadian. Though I have humble roots, this country of opportunity has allowed me to grow into a university-educated woman with two successful companies. Now many countries in this world offer all their citizens the chance to experiment with learning and personal pursuits without judgement or punishment for expressing themselves. In the same way Canada has unlocked opportunities for me, I feel it is our responsibility to swing open the doors to the banquet and allow others to rise to their potential through economic empowerment.  

Excerpt from That’ll Never Work – Business lessons from Successful Canadian Entreprenurs

Penguin Canada
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Barb’s pitch to the Dragons on CBC’s Dragons’ Den

 People sometimes ask how they can tap
into their own vision and follow it. I tell them to merge what they most want to change in the world with what they most want to do. Their burning desire to see change will drive them, while their newfound career control will bring them enormous satisfaction. Trust that if it hasn’t been done before, you’re probably on your way to doing something unique and significant. Don’t worry, there is no book, there is no guideline; you’re going to
create it. 

Barb’s thoughts on taking risk -
passion plus mission