We are delighted to announce that Mr. Ken Richards has joined MAPLE Business Council as our Ambassador to Atlantic Canada. In this capacity, Ken will have a leadership role in connecting Southern California and Atlantic Canada for investment, trade and entrepreneurship opportunities. The appointment follows the recent launch of the Ambassador Program, an initiative to deepen MAPLE business community ties across Canada.
"It is an honour to have Ken join our team", said Robert Kelle, chairman and co-founder of MAPLE. "Ken brings a wealth of leadership experience in Canada and across borders and is a strong advocate for opportunities in Canada's Atlantic provinces. We look forward to his contributions to our mission to support business growth between this dynamic region and Southern California."
Ken Richards is CEO and co-founder & partner of York Bridge Capital, a private equity firm with offices in Toronto, Los Angeles and Seoul, as well as co-founder of Elevation Bridge Realty, Inc. a boutique real estate brokerage, advisory and investment firm. Ken has over 30 years' experience in corporate and investment banking including serving as Managing Director with CIBC World Markets in Los Angeles and Toronto, and CFO of both public and private companies. At CIBC, he was Managing Director of a $5 billion debt portfolio. Throughout his career, he has completed large debt, high yield and equity financings in both North America and across the globe. He was a NASD Supervising Principal for CIBC in the United States.
Ken has served as an Advisor to innumerable companies and he is co-founder of the Westlake/Santa Barbara Chapter of Tech Coast Angels (TCA) and previously served on TCA's Board of Governors. TCA is the largest angel-funding network in the United States. Ken has also served on the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) Finance Committee. Bio is the biotechnology industry's principal trade organization. Ken holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Biology and Finance and a MBA from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
In the Ambassador role, Ken will lead networking opportunities on behalf of MAPLE Business Council with executives, entrepreneurs, investors and institutions in the provinces of New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Specific areas of focus will include increasing awareness for the cross-border mission of MAPLE to promote investment, trade and entrepreneurship opportunities, developing a membership base for MAPLE in Atlantic Canada and representing MAPLE to visiting business and government delegations to Southern California. In addition, Ken will more closely connect the MAPLE community with business trends and networking opportunities with Atlantic Canada as well as lead future trade missions to the region.