An Eclectic Leader Thriving On Resilience

Johanne McInnis’ years of leadership and impact in her community bring inspiration to the next generation on the water, in the tasting and in the mentorship of young mothers.

In This Episode

It’s easy for us to see how Johanne McInnis has been a leading force for change and improvement in multiple communities over the years. During our chat, she shared with Emily and Dave her life story and her views on helping young mothers and women achieve more than being a statistic. We hear what motivated her to make a difference and the welcomed cultural shift happening in younger generations.

In This Episode

First 10 Minutes
We meet our guest, Johanne McInnis, featured recently in a Huddle article and which Greg Hemmings tracked down on a sailboat to connect us. Johanne shares her background in sailing, whiskey, leadership, and her family. Johanne shares how her life changed when she chose to be a mom at 17. She didn’t want to be a statistic and wanted to achieve more. Johanne shares how at 35, when she was stable in her life, she started to work more and give back through the First Steps and Second Steps Housing programs. Johanne talks about the careers and passions she’s always found herself in, has always been male-dominated and how she’s had to be stubborn to succeed.

10 Minutes – 20 Minutes
Emily asks what made Johanne feel very strongly about being stable at 35. Johanne shares what she feels made her reach that realization and how her childhood helped shape her path. Johanne shares how their program was affected during COVID and its impact on the women they help. Johanne shares how they mentor young women and help them see what is possible while being realistic about the challenges they will face. Emily asks how all this ties into her sailing and the race around the world. Johanne shares how sailing has been part of her life and how losing a bet put her on a race boat.

20 Minutes – 30 Minutes
Dave asks what it is about sailing and why Johanne feels it’s such a great sport for women. Johanne shares what she feels sailing does by giving some people zen, and some love the adrenaline. For women who work together in the sport, it’s about working together without judgement. Johanne explains how racing on a boat works.

30 Minutes – 40 Minutes
Emily asks if or when Johanne needs to catch herself and keep herself in check of being too resilient or too independent. Johanne explains that it came with age and shares a story of how she had to ask for help just before COVID, and it was about recognizing that you can’t do it all on your own. Dave asks as a man with two daughters, and he loves how independent and strong they are, but it’s surprising to him that some of the opinions of men not believing women are capable of sailing in a race. He asks what advice Johanne can give men about how to show up for the women in their lives. Johanne talks about the cultural shift she has seen over the last ten years and her life. She explains her experiences in her life and how men in different generations are shifting in culture. Emily echoes the experiences that Johanne has had.

40 Minutes – 50 Minutes
We hear about the race around the world that is raising funds for education for girls and women worldwide in STEAM. The group shares their takeaways from the conversation.

Johanne McInnis

Johanne McInnis

Freelance writer, presenter, panelist and all around whisky enthusiast

Over 20 years experience in the writing / public speaking field. I have extensive experience in project management which lends beautifully to organising and presenting whisky tastings, classes and/or food & whisky pairings.

My educational background in Chemistry has given me a very strong understanding of the whisky making process and when combined with my public speaking skills makes for an excellent presenter for any occasion.

I am a pasionate and enthusiastic whisky persona who loves to share her knowledge base and help others on their own whisky journey.