Urban Stream Innovation Inc. (USI) is an invention of necessity. Led by UBC graduate Nick Hermes with the support of an advisory board of local entrepreneurs and a dedicated group of partners, gardeners and volunteers, Urban Stream develops sustainable composting systems with the goal of bringing easy composting to businesses, stratas, restaurants and schools..
Urban Steam’s mission is to change the nature of food scrap composting for urban consumers. Our vision is to reduce our community’s carbon footprint by composting food scraps right at your doorstep.
Nick Hermes graduated from UBC’s Biochemical Engineering program in 2008, where he wrote his honours’ thesis about a boat that contained a self-sufficent food growing system and composting solution. He has had a long-standing passion for composting and food growing.
Before founding Urban Stream in 2010, he worked at Angstrom Power as a Facilities Engineer. He grew up in Edmonton, Alberta and has lived in Vancouver since 2002.
Wes Regan has worked in sustainable community economic development, communications, and community engagement since 2009, primarily in Vancouver’s inner-city where he is currently the Executive Director of the Hastings Crossing Business Improvement Association.
Passionate about environmental and urban sustainability he is a founding Director of the Vancouver Urban Farming Society and a founding partner at Urban Stream Innovation, a food systems technology startup with operations in BC and Alberta. Wes currently serves on the advisory board for Conversations for Responsible Economic Development (CRED BC), is a member of the Board of Directors of LOCO BC and is a member of the BC Partners for Social Impact, a Provincial policy think tank examining ways to support and enable social innovation in communities and regions in British Columbia.
Rick is co-founder and President of Neutron Factory Works based out of Delta, BC. Neutron was launched in 1999 with three owner/operators as an electrical contracting company. Today, Neutron provides Refrigeration, Mechanical, Electrical, Programming, Welding and Fabricating services and equipment to over 300 customers in BC, Alberta, Alaska, California, Japan, Shanghai and beyond.
Rick and Neutron have received industry recognition over the years including;
Profit Magazine’s Hot 50 award (2002)
Business in Vancouver’s 40 under 40 award (2004)
City of Delta’s business of the year award (2005)
The BC Food Processors Association’s Innovation Award (2012)
The BCFPA’s Leadership Award (2013)
Small Business BC’s top 5 employers award (2014)
Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year finalist in the B2B category (2014)
Rick is also actively involved in both his community and the industries he serves;
Vice Chair, BC Safety Charter CEO steering committee
Director, FIOSA/MIOSA Safety Alliance of BC
Events Coordinator/Volunteer. Quest Food Exchange
Chair, Food Pro West, 2012, 2013 & 2014
Chair, Food Pro West Advisory Board, 2015
Director, ITA Manufacturing Board
Brad Brooks has a background which spans Sales, Operations, Marketing, Finance, Technology, and Broadcasting. He has worked on projects with large organization including Sodexo, Delaware North, GE, UCLA, Cedars Sinai Hospital in LA, as well as small companies and start-ups. As a result of his broad experience, Brad is regularly asked to consult on projects ranging from sales training, human resources, big data and operations.
A strong communicator, Brad hosted a business-based radio show featuring some of the top business authors in North America. Brad speaks publicly frequently and contributes to several blogs. His research and analysis of industry trends has been featured in the Vancouver Sun, Toronto Star, Montreal Gazette, Calgary Herald and the Wall Street Journal.
Brad has been passionate about mentoring and coaching for over 20 years. He was honored with the SFU MBA Mentors In Business Outstanding Mentor Award in 2013.
Scott is a proven leader in the financial industry with extensive results-oriented experience in both complex commercial banking transactions and small business financing including operating, term, real estate and mezzanine financing. A highly effective communicator and team builder, Scott’s experience includes successfully leading teams and building collaborative internal and external partnerships to achieve strong results.
With 25 years of banking and finance experience, Scott has continually focused on assisting business owners with financial and business planning support. Scott has provided a range of financial services and tools to companies, small business owners, emerging entrepreneurs as well as not-for-profits, social enterprises and cooperatives. Scott’s current focus is providing support to organizations and business owners in their strategic planning process to create credible, thorough business plans ensuring managed growth and access to financing.
Donovan’s work focuses on translating great sustainable business ideas into great sustainable businesses.
In 2013, Donovan became the director of RADIUS Ventures, an impact business incubator at SFU’s Beedie School of Business. Through RADIUS’ six-month Slingshot and seven week Trampoline programs, Donovan helps impact businesses become market and investor ready.
Since 2010, Donovan has also run Transom Enterprises to launch and grow sustainability oriented businesses. These include Persephone Brewing Company, Victoria Car Share Coop (now part of MODO), and Local Garden, a large-scale vertical farm in downtown Vancouver.
Prior to Transom, Donovan spent four years as COO of Offsetters, Canada’s leading carbon offset and carbon management firm. He has also worked for Vancity, BC Hydro, and Ecotrust and worked the graveyard shift at a half-way house.
Donovan has an MBA from UBC’s Sauder School of Business, a Post-Baccalaureate Diploma in Community Economic Development from SFU, and an undergraduate degree (Hon.) in philosophy.
Mark is the owner of Luke’s Corner Bar & Kitchen and has decades of experience running restaurants in Vancouver as VP of Spectra Group, including Milestones, Bread Garden, The Boathouse and Red Door. Mark brings a wealth of experience to Urban Stream’s knowledge of the restaurant and food service industry.