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Formerly Sarnia-Lambton Business Development Corporation, we’ve got a new name and look!

Who We Are

Community Futures Lambton, formerly the Sarnia-Lambton Business Development Corporation, is a non-profit entity guided by a volunteer Board of Directors and a staff team of experienced business professionals.

Supporting local since 1988

Funded by the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), we have provided funding and complimentary business coaching services to local businesses in Lambton County since 1988.

We are part of a network of over 260 Community Futures organizations across Canada. Each office is situated in a community with a population of under 100,000 and is dedicated to empowering entrepreneurs and small—to medium-sized businesses in rural areas.

We helped Nicole and John start a gluten-free bakery

By The Numbers

900

Total loans since 1988

50,000,000

Total loan value since 1988

10,000

Jobs created since 1988

4500

People coached in the last five years

8,800,000

In active loans

3,400,000

Available to lend

Our Team

CEO

Sarah Reaume

Sarah is an experienced CEO with over 35 years of career experience, dedicated to driving innovation, excellence, and capacity growth across various industries. She is recognized for her people-centric approach, creativity, and critical thinking skills, making her both a problem-solver and a community connector. With a solid reputation as a mission-driven team leader and strategic thinker, Sarah has successfully implemented award-winning business solutions, resulting in increased revenue and achievement of organizational goals.
Business Loans Officer

Jennifer Vandenberg

Jennifer joins our team having had 10+ years working as a Small Business, and then a Senior Banking Advisor for Scotiabank where she was well-known for the breadth of her knowledge, her dedication to her clients and her award-winning customer service. Jenn also brings years of experience as a small business entrepreneur to the position as a former owner/operator of a year ‘round, farm-to-table, 50-acre orchard near Arkona. Jennifer is excited to bring her solid grounding in banking, loan development and service, and her knowledge of small business operations to bear for our clients.
Marketing & Administration Officer

Ashley Rusticus

Ashley joined SLBDC in 2018 and has played a key role in improving operations, strengthening our mission, promoting team cohesion, and connecting with our community through digital channels. With a Digital Marketing Management certification from the University of Toronto and 12 years in finance, Ashley manages our loan portfolio, oversees administration, and handles digital marketing platforms.
Marketing Assistant

Ryan Davies

Ryan recently completed his first year at McMaster University, where he studies Integrated Business and Humanities whilst also competing on the University’s cross country and track teams. Ryan was the recipient of the YMCA’s 2023 ‘Celebration of Youth” scholarship award presented by us and recognizing his entrepreneurial accomplishments whilst still a secondary school student. We are so pleased to welcome him to our team this summer. Ryan is criss-crossing Lambton's municipalities and running the streets of Sarnia this summer to collect content from local businesses that will be featured in Community Futures Lambton’s upcoming "Celebrate Lambton" social media campaign. Along the way Ryan is communicating information about our organization and the services we offer.
Business Development Officer

Natalie Palko

Natalie is an alum of Community Futures Lambton where she worked as our Business Development Officer providing both business planning and support services to clients as well as loan underwriting support. We are celebrating her return to our team. Natalie holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Management & Organizational Studies. She has held various positions with the Workplace Group, HRDownloads, the St. Clair Conservation Authority and, most recently, was the Operations Manager for Collide Lounge & Events in Sarnia. Natalie is excited to return to the frontlines of business support services and to put her years of experience at CF and elsewhere to work for our clients.

Natalie is currently on maternity leave and will join the team on Sept 3rd.

Our team focuses on three primary services

Funding

We offer repayable loan funding of up to $300,000 to eligible local businesses, with a greater risk tolerance than traditional lenders.

Coaching

We provide FREE business coaching and advisory services to businesses at all stages of the business lifecycle.

Development

We collaborate closely with economic development partners to promote and support initiatives that drive community economic growth.

Our Communities

We support local entrepreneurs by investing in businesses and community economic development projects in the following cities, towns and townships across Lambton County.

  • Municipality of Brooke-Alvinston
  • Township of Dawn-Euphemia
  • Township of Enniskillen
  • Municipality of Lambton Shores
  • Village of Oil Springs
  • Town of Petrolia
  • Town of Plympton-Wyoming
  • Village of Point Edward
  • City of Sarnia
  • Township of St. Clair
  • Township of Warwick

Lambton County is home to three First Nations Communities: Aamjiwnaang, Kettle & Stoney Point, and Walpole Island. The Community Futures Program serves these communities through the Tecumseh Community Development Corporation.

Our Board

Representing various Lambton County communities and business sectors, our nine-member Board of Directors provides governance oversight for Community Futures Lambton.

Kristin MacFarlane

Board Chair

Owner of MacFarlane Chev Buick GMC and M&M Meats in Petrolia. Joined 2023.

Adam Brandon

Board Vice-Chair

Owner of KNK Mechanical Group in Sarnia. Joined 2023.

Grace Dekker

Board Secretary

Owner of the Ipperwash Beach Club. Joined 2018.

Chelsea Cooper

Lawyer and partner at Great Lakes Law. Joined 2019.

Todd Mcneil

A Chartered Accountant and senior partner at Mello LLP in Sarnia. Joined 2019.

Kelly Provost

Director of Economic Development for the City of Sarnia. Joined 2022.

Brooke Giresi

Co-owner of Sweet Lemons boutique in Sarnia. Joined 2023.

Laura Howitt

Founder and President of SGD Compliance Consulting Inc. Joined 2024.

Jerica Giresi

Alternate

Co-owner of Sweet Lemons boutique in Sarnia. Joined 2023.

Our Partners

We're proud to work with our economic development partners in Lambton County.

Let's get to work.