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About Us

Our Vision

Creating Inspired Communities Where People Love to Live

13 Ways Inc. was founded as a company to facilitate success in building communities people want to live in and can prosper within. Doug Griffiths, the founder and chief community builder for 13 Ways Inc. started the company with a passion and commitment to improving the lives of people in small rural communities. Since then our team has expanded to include experts in facilitation, branding and marketing, retail and downtown redesign opportunities, and building intentional healthy communities.


Chief Community Builder

Growing up on a ranch outside a small community was a great practical education for Doug Griffiths, giving him a strong work ethic and critical thinking skills. He went on to also acquire an Honours BA Philosophy, followed by a B.Ed, and in 2016 completed the Executive MBA program at the University of Alberta. Education, whether he is learning or teaching, has always been an important aspect of his life. After teaching and ranching for several years, Doug successfully served as an elected Member of the Legislative Assembly in the Province of Alberta for four consecutive terms. In that time, he served in two senior Cabinet portfolios as Minister of Municipal Affairs and Minister of Service Alberta, as well as three junior positions in Agriculture, Finance, and Solicitor General. Doug retired from politics in January 2015 to actively pursue his passion of helping communities, organizations and businesses grow stronger. In his best-selling book, 13 Ways to Kill Your Community, Doug identifies challenges and opportunities that all our communities face.
The lessons that come from those stories are applicable to all types of communities, whether they are towns, organizations, or businesses. His talents include seeing through the lies we tell ourselves, overcoming bad attitudes, targeted and focused tactical planning, communicating with those who are afraid to change, and building enduring prosperity for communities. His passion lies in building strong communities, because within strong communities leadership can succeed, businesses can prosper, and families can find a great quality of life.

Heather Thomson

Consumer Behaviour Expert

Heather Thomson is the Executive Director of the Alberta School of Business – Centre for Cities and Communities. As one of the founders of the centre, Heather is mentoring the next generation of business innovators while working with leaders in the business community with an emphasis on education, consulting, academic & applied research and industry outreach. Heather also works as a consultant with 13 Ways Inc. a Community Development Firm. Heather delivers business and community assessments, builds community plans that specialize in economic development, local businesses prosperity and beautification. Heather has worked with hundreds of communities and has delivered dozens of keynote presentations across North America.

Prior to her work with the University of Alberta and 13 Ways, Heather has worked at lululemon athletica, ATB Financial and started her career with McDonalds Restaurants. She is passionate about business success and growing the pool of talent to work in this fascinating industry.

Heather is a business advocate and strategist. A few highlights include:

  • Employed hundreds of business students who have worked with more than 2500 organizations in the Edmonton region
  • Has secured 1.3 million dollars in funding to support the local business community recover from the effects of the pandemic
  • Helped create the new Centre for Cities and Communities Works with national media networks to deliver consumer behaviour research to the country
  • Serves on the Edmonton Business Association and past member of Old Strathcona
    Business Association Economic Recovery Task Force
  • Working on her masters in behavioural economics

A forward-thinker in every sense, Heather is of the belief that even the most challenging of situations can be resolved from an angle of compassion, understanding and collaboration. Heather is a proud mom of two boys, an avid snowboarder, and an advocate for gender parity and equity in the workforce… especially for working parents.