Are you looking for more information on Shelby Ch’ng? You have come to the right place!
*Born in Thunder Bay
*Grew up over the bridge in the East End (across from the railroad tracks)
*Attended Ogden Street School and Fort William Collegiate Institute
*Received an honours degree from Lakehead University in Political Science
*Lived in Northwood since Nov 2005
*Invested in a second property in Northwood in 2012
H.B.A. Politics – Lakehead University
June 2006 – Sept 2012, Northern Ontario School of Medicine – Medical Education Coordinator
Sept 2012 – Present, Unveiled Bridal Boutique – Owner and Operator
Committee, Volunteer Work, Awards and Memberships
*Current Advisory Member of the S.O.S. – Shelter House Outreach Service Team
*Current Board of Director for Thunder Bay’s SHIFT Network
*Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce Member
*Thunder Bay Paro Member
*Winner of the Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 from Paro (click HERE for the video)
*Awarded the NOHFC Young Entrepreneur Grant 2012
*Recipient of the Influential Woman of Northern Ontario – Young Entrepreneur 2014 http://www.influentialwomen.ca/winners2014/shelby-chng.aspx
Ok… now the long version.
I was born in McKellar hospital. Dr. Norman Krupa was the first person to ever see me. He is still my family doctor to this day. When I was 4 years old, my family settled into the East End. My dad worked at the local mill and my mother was a homemaker. Life was simple but tough growing up with 4 brothers but my parents managed to make ends meet. I attended Ogden Street School from JK all the way through grade 6. It was in Mrs. Boo’s grade 5 class that I had my first real encounter with politics. Mrs. Boo was such a great teacher. I really liked her. She had us cut out different articles about issues from the 1993 federal campaign.
Jean Chretien vs. Kim Campbell made headlines everywhere. I remember watching some videos and being taught what left and right wing meant. Politics fascinated me. There were a lot of articles around feminism and politics. Kim Campbell was the first female Prime Minister. I remember thinking that, “When I grow up, there will be a lot of women in politics.” Fast forward 20 something odd years later… we haven’t had a female Prime Minister since.
My father was a union man at the mill so there was always some sort of grievance, collective bargaining or strike talk at the dinner table. Talking about politics was just a way of life. So it was no mistake that I ended up with honours in Political Science from Lakehead University. My first day of classes was Sept 11, 2001. The events of this day changed the world and shaped the new generation. This was an exciting time to be in politics.
After university, I did not want to leave Thunder Bay. This was my home. So many of my friends left Thunder Bay for the big oil jobs out west or government jobs in Southern Ontario. The ones that remained seemed to complain a lot about no opportunity and some are still waiting for that job that completes them and pays them a hefty salary. I knew I had to get my foot in the door somewhere. I applied for a job at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. They took me in with a degree and some office related experience. I started off in the Assessment and Evaluation department and learnt so much on the job. This is a great place for new graduates to get a start in the work force. I was also able to put my husband through school and now he is working in the community as a Civil Engineer. I was there for about a year when I was promoted to Medical Education Coordinator. During this time we became unionized and after a three month strike, had a first collective agreement. I wouldn’t recommend being on strike to anyone but it was such a learning experience for me professionally and as a person. I became a union representative and worked with the various union committees and assisted with resolving a number of issues.
I really loved the opportunities that I had at the medical school but I had a burning desire to start my own business. With help from Paro and a few other organizations, I put together my business plan, saved my money and I quit my job. A few thought I was crazy for quitting a desk job that paid what it did and had the job security but I wanted more out of my life. A friend of mine once said to me, “life is short, death is long”. I took the plunge and opened up my bridal boutique.
Starting a business from scratch isn’t easy and it takes a lot of dedication. I am an extremely resourceful person, hard worker and a smart worker. I have never felt so complete and successful. I didn’t have to leave Thunder Bay after all!! I am so happy to be working in my home community that I love.
My business offers me the flexibility to volunteer and commit to projects close to my heart. I have been a member of SHIFT since it began years ago and I now sit on the Board of Directors. SHIFT helps people realize that there are opportunities for the younger generation in Thunder Bay.
In short, I left home with the shirt on my back and a metal pot in hand and was able to put myself through school, find employment, purchase a property and start a business. I am proud to live in Northwood with my family and now I want to give back. I am in a position in my life where I want to give back to the community that gave so much to me. I want to help move Northwood forward, together. There is so much unrealized potential for the neighbourhood and I am excited for the opportunity to run in the city I love. I am really looking forward to the campaign trail and knocking on doors and getting to know everyone in the area.