LAURA BEST (Write By Me): Laura is a writer from East Dalhousie, Nova Scotia. Her first young adult novel, Bitter, Sweet was published in 2009, and was shortlisted for the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People. For more information, check out her WebsiteTwitter or Facebook.

CARRIE ELLEN BRUMMER (Wishing Well; Why Teachers Matter)Carrie is an artist, a teacher, and a dreamer. She has taught Visual Arts for 8 years and is now an administrator at a school in Dubai. Carrie is also a practicing artist who has had art exhibits in both the United States and Dubai. For more information about Carrie’s work visit her Blog, follow her on Twitter orcontact her at opalartist (at) yahoo (dot) com

COLLEEN CANNEY (Living with Passion & Purpose): Colleen is a Career and Spiritual Leadership Coach from Seattle with clients around the world. Colleen brings a well-rounded background that includes an MBA and over ten years’ experience working as a Human Resources professional in both the private and non-private sectors. For more information, visit or contact Colleen via email at: colleencanney (at) live (dot) com

RICK COGBILL (Green Cheese): Rick is a Canadian author and humor columnist living in the beautiful Okanagan Valley in southern British Columbia. His popular column, The Car Side has been running monthly in automotive trade magazines for over 13 years. His hilarious book, A Fine Day for a Drive is available online at Rick is also the Director of Mercy Tech Mission, a non-profit group dedicated to bringing skills training to Africa. You can also follow Rick on Facebook.

KAARINA DILLABOUGH (Choice Not Chance): Kaarina is a business/life coach living in Ontario, Canada. For over 25 years her high-voltage energy, expertise and experience has inspired those she has worked with to reach beyond their grasp, to attain great things in business and in life. A former Olympic sports colour commentator and coach, Kaarina parlayed her coaching skills from the gym floor to the boardroom, working with business owners to improve their profitability and prosperity. In doing so, she has seen people grow both personally and professionally. Kaarina is known as an inspiring motivational speaker in areas such as branding, marketing, business growth strategies, and personal growth and prosperity. She is a passionate, seasoned coach and accountability partner with a proven track record, who loves nothing more than helping people achieve their goals in business and in life. Check out her Blog or follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

GARY DOI (Choose Hope; AHS Reports)Gary recently retired after serving 18 years as School Superintendent in three British Columbia school districts. Previous to that, he had been a teacher, consultant, school administrator and university lecturer. He created the magazine blog “A Hopeful Sign” to foster the spread of hopefulness by encouraging people to live-learn-lead. Follow Gary on Twitter or Facebook.

VALLI FRASER-CELIN (Valli in South Africa; Valli in South Africa 2): Valli grew up in Montreal, Canada and currently lives and volunteers as a librarian at the Southern African Wildlife College in Hoedspruit, South Africa. In 2010, Valli helped to co-organize a service learning trip for student members of Librarians Without Border to do fieldwork with the Asturias Academy Library in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala. An avid traveler, Valli is passionate about global literacy and environmental conservation issues. Check out Valli’s Blog; SAWC websiteFacebook.

ZEE GORMAN (Taking Flight; Taking Flight 2): Born in South China duringthe Cultural Revolution (both her parents were exiled to the countryside for being ‘intellectuals’), Zee Gorman was raised within layers of political and cultural confines. Yet her love for literature gave wings to a life that would be completely different from that of her parents. She has written short stories, poems, and essays, and is mildly published in China. Her quest and thirst for more understanding of the Western cultures eventually led to her migration to the United States where she completed two Master’s Degrees at Northern Arizona University. Today, Zee Gorman lives in Northern California with her husband and her daughter. By night she is a writer, an artist, a crafter… whatever she imagines herself to be and by day she has a career in IT management. Check out Zee Gorman’s blog, follow her on Twitter. Zee Gorman is working on a fantasy trilogy called “The Altethlon Chronicles”. Find out more on

ANN HARRISON (Retirement Wishes): Ann is a Retirement Options™ trained retirement coach and Too Young To Retire™ facilitator. She is also a writer, blogger and creator of information products; she retired from her job in education management at the ripe old age of forty-three. She is the author of ebooks, “The Retirement Detox Programme: 40 days to get your retirement back on track” and ‘Thought Provokers: Questions you need to ask yourself BEFORE you retire”. For more information, check out her retirement Website or Blog or follow her on Twitter.

LEIGH MCADAM (HikeBikeTravel): Leigh thrives on change and travel provides that. She has explored the world, a grand total of 53 countries (all continents except Antarctica). She is a photographer and travel writer in search of compelling images and stories that capture the essence of her adventures.  Currently, she is working on a book featuring the Canadian outdoors. Check out her blog HikeBikeTravel or contact her on Facebook or Twitter.

MOLLY MCCLELLAND (Mom Spelled Backwards): Molly is a writer, humorist and working mother from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. As a first-time, new mom to Jeffrey John II, Molly created a new blog called momsaidwhat and uses the power of words and laughter to help find a balance between her family and her ambition. Fingers crossed. Twitter: @mommamcclelland

JOHN MCLAUGHLIN (Making Sense): John is School Superintendent of School District 15 in Northeastern New Brunswick. His goal is to nurture a sense of goodness in his students, so they graduate from high school equipped not just with strong academic skills, but also with a desire to contribute positively to their world. He is the creator and author of SuperPals, an educational blog that profiles interesting people who make a difference for children and youth around the world. Twitter: @SD15_JohnM

BRUCE MASTERMAN (Heading Out): Bruce is an award-winning Alberta writer, book author, photographer, magazine assignment editor and college journalism instructor with a passion for conservation and almost anything outdoorsy. He contributes to various magazines, including Outdoor Canada, The Conservator, West, Reader’s Digest and several others. Bruce is the author of two nonfiction books – Heading Out: A Celebration of the Great Outdoors in Calgary and Southern Alberta, and Paradise Preserved: The Ann and Sandy Cross Conservation Area – and has contributed to five others. Website:

NINA MUNTEANU (The Passionate Writer): Nina is an author who lives in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. She has written several novels, short stories, and essays published worldwide and translated into several languages. Nina teaches and coaches writing through her website Her acclaimed “The Fiction Writer: Get Published, Write Now!” is currently the textbook for creative writing classes at several universities and schools in North America. Nina’s blog is the Alien Next Door. Follow Nina on Facebook and Twitter.

MARILYN PRICE-MITCHELL (Impassion Youth): Marilyn is a developmental psychologist, educator, researcher, and writer from Bainbridge Island, WA. She is founder of Roots of Action where she brings evidence-based research on youth development to popular audiences. She is also president of the National ParentNet Association, a U.S. nonprofit organization devoted to building parent-school-community partnerships that help kids succeed in school and life. She believes all of us share responsibility for leading today’s youth toward lives of fulfillment, well-being, and active citizenship – a hopeful future. Connect with Marilyn on Facebook, Twitter or at

ALISON SANDILANDS (Hopeful Traveller): Alison is a journalist and travel blogger from England who is preparing for solo travel in Canada/USA. Read about her adventures on her blog (See My Travels) or follow her on Twitter.

CAROLYN SOLARES (Breathing Room): Carolyn is a writer and creative business consultant from Minneapolis, Minnesota who loves living a happy life and writing about the journey. Carolyn’s diverse professional background includes experience in Fortune 500 companies, consulting with a variety of small businesses—and four years in the U.S. Army in Military Intelligence. She holds an MBA from Xavier University and a BA from Fordham University in Russian Studies. Carolyn is a contributing author in the book Happiness Awaits You! (2010) and her first book will be published in 2011. She also writes regularly on her blog Signs & Serendipity.  Follow her on Twitter.

CATHERINE SUNDHER (Desert Sun): Catherine is an Ex-pat living in Abu Dhabi, United Arabl Emirates. She is a West Coast girl who feels fortunate to call Victoria, British Columbia as her “home-base”. She’s happily married to an educator and has two grown and independent sons. Curious by nature and with a perpetual desire for new challenges, Catherine has moved from the “Travel Industry to Design” with numerous stops along the way. As Gilbert Chesterson wrote, “Why Not” is a slogan for an interesting life. Email: catherinesundher (at) gmail (dot) com

AIMEE LEDEWITZ WEINSTEIN (Bloom Where You Are Planted): Aimee is a writer and writing professor who has lived six out of the last eight years in Tokyo, Japan. She received her doctorate from the Department of Higher Education at George Mason University and has held positions at Temple University Japan, The George Washington University, and George Mason University. She has taught a variety of writing courses, from freshman composition to advanced expository writing. Her work has been published in Kaleidescope, Tokyo Weekender, inTouch, and Asian Jewish Life. She also maintains a regular blog at TokyoWriter, where she fondly observes Tokyo life through the eyes of an American expat and writes about writing. Aimee currently resides in Tokyo with her supportive husband and two beautiful children, where she continues to write and help others in their writing. Follow her on Twitter.

CATHRYN WELLNER (Hope is All Around): Along Cathryn’s meandering career path have been stints as a French teacher, a school librarian, an itinerant storyteller, a university instructor, a community developer, a communications consultant, and a project manager. Then there were the years as a farmer, rancher, and arts organizer. She’s a citizen of two countries and has lived in five. The upside of all that change is stories. Now she’s settling down (in Kelowna, BC) to write them: Catching Courage Cathryn Wellner Story Route This Gives Me Hope