Millennials are generally painted in a very negative light. From the media, to the people around us, Generation Y is seen as ignorant and lazy. While at times that may be true, some of the most powerful people in the world are Millennials. They are out to change the world, and contrary to popular belief, care about the world and it's people more than you'd think.
Canadian millennials are amongst some of those powerful people. From entrepreneurs, to musicians, we are not short of having our own list of influential people that will one day change the world in the various topics they chose to target.
Who are they: The face of the student movement in Quebec, Gabriel led the battle against many powerful Quebec politicians that pushed back on tuition hikes. He is said to be one of the major figures that show how involved in politics Millennials really are, and in turn changing our country.
Who are they: Spoiler alert! You're about to feel really bad about yourself. At such a young age, Liat has not one, not two, but FIVE startups under her belt! One of her most notable achievements has been starting a non-profit organization that helps Syrian refugees integrate into Canada. Currently, she is pursing a dual degree in Commerce and Computer Science at Queen's university. Talk about superwoman!
Occupation: Founder of SPINCO
From: Okanagan Valley
Who are they: This young entrepreneur has four locations for her SPINCO studio, which is an indoor cycling studio. Having a passion and drive for youth health and wellness, she moved out of her hometown in BC to expand her business into Ontario, after having opened two locations out west. Additionally, after the passing of her uncle, Michelle and her brother co-founded the August Family Foundation, which helps local charities in the Okanagan Valley.
Occupation: Entrepreneur, social activist
Who are they: Other than having a growing blow-dry salons, Blo Blow Dry Bar, in an effort to normalize the conversation about the trauma women fight, face and survive in their lives, Brooks opening raises awareness and advocates for this cause by sharing her story of being raped at 18 and terrorized by her ex-boyfriend.
Who are they: Singer-songwriter, Ball is making it big in the neo-Soul music genre. Having released his EP earlier this year, Ball has also performed everywhere from Dubai to Shanghai. The Toronto native is ready to light a major fire in the music business and further put Toronto on the map in the music world!
Who are they: Speaking of musicians who have put Toronto on the map, hello Drake! Actor-turned musician, Drake is hailed as the 6ix God for a reason. From being one of the biggest rappers in the world to his frequent charity work, Drake is nothing short of influential in this era. Try listening to a Drake song without some sort of Toronto hint in it-very rare.
Occupation: Professional athlete
From: Cole Harbour
Who are they: The youngest-NHL captain to ever win the Stanley Cup, Crosby is hailed as the greatest hockey player in the world of this generation. Other than his work on the ice which has led the Pittsburgh Penguins to winning three Stanley Cups in the last eight years, he led Team Canada to a Gold Medal in the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. He is also the founder of the Sidney Crosby Foundation that supports many local charities in his hometown and funds the Learn to Play program in Pittsburgh.
Occupation: Founder of LightSail Energy
Who are they: If you could use the simplest words to describe this incredible millennial it would be-kid genius. She dropped out of middle school at 12, and went to Dalhousie University, then went on to get a PHD from Princeton...at 17. Her company recently secured $37.5M in funding to further their efforts in storing energy efficiently in compressed air. Talk about Girl Boss!
Occupation: Founder of Polar Mobile
Who are they: What do millennials love more than constantly being on their cellphones? Probably not a lot of things, and Gupta took that and turned it into gold. Working with major brands such as GQ, Vogue and CBS Sports, the company provides media firms with a platform to launch branded mobile apps across smartphone and tablet devices. He has over 400 clients in over 12 countries...and counting!
Occupation: Filmmaker, actor, director
Who are they: Many people in their early 20s are young adults in either university or fresh in the adulting world. However, Dolan was racking in awards at the Cannes Film Festival, for his powerful movie about coming out. Having done films in the French language, Dolan is in production for his first English film, which is said to have a very controversial storyline about a Hollywood director (Kit Harrington) having a private encounter with an 11 year old fan.
Occupation: Professional athletes
Who are they: This professional Canadian soccer player put on the performance of a lifetime against the USA at the 2012 London Olympics when she scored 3 goals that almost landed Canada the Gold medal. Her countless efforts and achievements make her influential role model to young, especially soccer players, everywhere.
Who are they: This Toronto model has been seen on spreads for GQ Japan to a campaign for H&M to the runways of New York. Graduating from the Ryerson University journalism program, Bell recently signed on to and kicked off the Holt Renfrew campaign. So he's smart and pretty!
Who are they: This serial entrepreneur has many business under him that make him a force to be reckoned with! Named to the 2017 Forbes 30 Under 30, this York University graduate is currently the founder of Kidogo, a social enterprise that improves access to high-quality, affordable Early Childhood Care & Education in East Africa’s low-income communities. He has also been a consultant for many Fortune 500 companies!
Who are they: At first a self-published author, Kaur writes poetry from her feminist soul that has inspired women around the world. Her book, "Milk & Honey", put her on the map as a young writer in 2014 and was later picked up by a publishing firm in 2015. Recently, she published her second book "The Sun and Her Flowers" and sits atop the listings as New York Times Best Selling author.