Hometown: Grey County, ON
Occupation: Marketing and Communications
Ashley Warrington is a confident and compassionate woman who is inspired by the quote, “Though she be but little, she is fierce.” – Shakespeare. She strives to inspire others to know that no matter your size, age, gender or race; anyone can make a difference as long as they believe in themselves and their goal. Raised in the small town of Singhampton located in Grey County, Ontario, Ashley’s family has always been big supporters of Ashley’s ever-growing ambition and commitment to being a leader in her community.
While studying Image Arts & Media Studies at Ryerson University, Ashley started her own property management company in Toronto. Through this company she made it a goal to create job opportunities for many members of the LGBTQ community. Her entrepreneurial and creative spirit has also resulted in her being the co-founder of two other companies; HoloInvites, an Augmented Reality Greeting Card Company, and AshleyMegan, a personal styling and fashion accessory business.
Ashley is employed as a member of the marketing and communications team for the company, Sea & Ski Realty, a local boutique real estate company in Grey County. This career has allowed her to be a part of the community and support local business and initiatives. She is the co-producer for a local series called “What’s Happening – In Our Community” with monthly episodes focusing on supporting the current events, businesses, and the future of Grey County. Ashley also co-creates a monthly blog/video that focuses on local businesses and promotes the local tourism & lifestyle industry. Previously Ashley has worked in radio broadcasting as a live-on-location reporter, she has travelled with NASCAR Canada, as a member of the promotions and marketing team, taught preschool, and has worked in the fashion industry as a buyer and personal stylist.
Ashley was very fortunate to grow up with the opportunity to be involved in many extracurricular activities. At a young age she developed a passion for dancing, primarily tap, clogging and step, which led to her being a competitive dancer for 13 years. Aside from dancing, Ashley has participated in many musical theatre productions, figure skating, 4-H, softball, soccer. Ashley still maintains an active lifestyle by practicing yoga daily and regularly going for hikes.
To exercise her creativity muscles, she designs and makes jewellery, is an avid drawer focusing on pointillism, enjoys graphic design and is a passionate photographer and videographer. Using her creative abilities, Ashley is able to contribute to her community and her businesses by being a creative problem solver.
One of Ashley’s greatest passions is pageantry. At the age of 18, she won her first crown by competing in her hometown fall fair pageant/ambassador competition. This experience and opportunity opened a new chapter in her life, intriguing her to explore the industry even more. Her entry into the Queen of the Fair/Toronto CNE Ambassador competition; where she placed 3rd runner-up also led her to compete in the Miss Mid-West beauty pageant and place in the top 10. In 2016 she continued to compete and win the title of Miss Toronto Tourism.
In Ashley’s eyes, pageantry is her opportunity to follow her dream of being a leader in her community. These experiences have sculpted her into a strong, confident, broad-minded woman and have given her a platform to promote self-confidence and be a symbol for anyone who thinks they are too small to make a big difference. All they need to do is truly believe in themselves and their goal and success will be achieved.
What are your interests and what do you enjoy doing the most?
Growing up in this beautiful country has allowed me to easily participate in my favourite activity: camping. Camping is like a second home for me where I can appreciate nature and explore everything it has to offer. It reminds me to be grateful for all the beauty in this world. My interests and hobbies have evolved over the years. When I was 3 years old, I fell in love with dancing, and still love it to this day. I have always been involved in many extracurricular activities; like musical theatre productions, student council, yearbook editor, 4-H member, local agricultural society board member, team member of multiple sports teams and was a mentor for the link crew leadership program. I also enjoy exploring my creative side by making jewelry, drawing, taking beautiful photos, creating art of all kinds, interior design, and being a personal stylish. I love to immerse myself in new experiences and new cultures, I believe that in order to grow one must to step out of their comfort zone and experience new things, meet new people, welcome new perspectives and to try new yummy food.
List any special training you have had (music, art, drama, dance, etc.)
My love of dancing came with 13 years of training which included spending extra hours working on my own routine. I have also received musical theatre training, which opened doors to productions like Oliver Twist, The King & I, and Shout the Musical. I recently participated in a pilot training course, where I gained the knowledge to pass my Basic Ontario Drone Pilots exam. I was a member of my high school band where I was trained to play 2 instruments, percussion, and trombone. I have also received training in many creative areas like photography, graphic design, clothing design, interior design, and radio broadcasting.
In what sports, if any, have you participated?
I have always lived a very active lifestyle, from the age of 3 I have been dancing both competitively and for personal fitness. The practice of daily yoga not only keeps me physically strong but also mentally strong. Growing up I was a member of a local all-boys softball team, where we took home the first place trophy two years in a row. My involvement in sports has not been limited to these activities, as I participated in figure skating, taekwondo, soccer, volleyball, mountain biking, swimming, and golf. Sports have always been an important part of my life, teaching me valuable lessons and skills.
Name one person, other than your parents, who has had the most influence on your life. Why?
There are many people who have influenced and mentored me through the years but there is one person who has been an outstanding example of how women can be inspiring leaders and a dominating force in their fields. This wonderful, inspiring woman’s name is Karen Cox, Owner and Broker of Record for Sea & Ski Realty, the past president of the Ontario Real Estate Association, and my boss. Though I have not known Karen for as long as I would like, every day when I go to work, I get to be a part of her ambitious ideas and business goals. There has never been a day where she doesn’t inspire me to go after my goals. She has accomplished so much in her life already and continues to make an impact in the community every day. From the moment I told Karen about my dream to be Miss Universe Canada, she has been so supportive and has been like my own personal coach. Karen’s list of accomplishments is endless, but to me what is the most inspiring about Karen is her passion to be involved in the community and to always motivate others to go after their dreams.
What is your proudest personal accomplishment (other than participating in this pageant)?
My proudest personal accomplishment would be when I was given the honor of being crowned the 2011-2012 Feversham Fall Fair Ambassador. This was an opportunity to represent my home and promote our fair and what we represent all over the province. Throughout my reign many doors where opened. I received the opportunity to be a member of the Agricultural society, organize fundraising events, be involved with local politics, and most importantly, to be a role model for young women in our community. Being the Ambassador was a turning point in my life. It is where I learned to advanced my public speaking skills, build my self-confidence, and it sparked the flame to my passion of wanting to be a community leader.
What is the most interesting or unique thing that has ever happened to you and/or what is the most interesting thing about you?
One of my most memorable experiences was when I competed in my first 4-H showmanship competition. 4-H is a not-for-profit organization that is focused on strong leadership for world-class positive youth development experiences in Canada. On the day of the competition it was 30 degrees Celsius and Alley, my black angus calf, was exhausted from a long day of being at the fall fair. I had made it to the final 5 showmen, and I was the only female left. During the competition, Alley decided to take off and drag me out of the show ring by my arm. Though it looked as though I was out of the competition, I told myself this is my opportunity to show how strong females really are. With a sprained wrist I walked Alley back out into the show ring and continued the competition. Not only did I win, I also discovered how tough I really was, and that believing in yourself is a truly powerful tool.
What is your career ambition and what are you doing or plan to do to accomplish that goal?
My career ambition is to obtain employment that allows me to be a leader in the community. I believe with that as my focus for my career it will lead me down a path of endless possibilities. The steps I am taking and opportunities I am seizing have already put me on the right track. Currently, I am a member of the marketing and communications team for a local real estate company. My focus at this company is community engagement and the promotion of local events and businesses. I jump at every opportunity to be involved in the community. I am determined to build a career that I do not have to call “work” but rather my passion.
What would be your “dream job” in life?
The first thing that comes to mind when I think of my dream job is to be Miss Universe Canada. My ultimate goal is to be a leader in the community and this role gives me the platform to be just that. This job would give me the opportunity to encourage others to know that no matter your size, age, gender or race; anyone can make a difference as long as they believe in themselves and their goal.
Describe where you were raised and what your childhood was like.
I am grateful to have been born and raised in Grey County, Ontario. This is an area where everyone knows everyone, where we all come together to support one another and is a true representation of a community. Whether it is the simple friendly waves that are given to every passing car, or the comfort of knowing someone will always have you back, this area of great people really makes me proud to call this my home. I have been blessed with 2 loving parents, an older brother, and 2 beautiful nieces. My family has always been a great support system when it comes to me following my dreams of being a leader in the community. As a child, growing up on in Grey County offered endless possibilities, and with my creative mind I had the most amazing adventures. I would spend most of my days either at the barn with the animals, being a young entrepreneur by setting up lemonade stands or go exploring thought nature.
List any interesting or unusual jobs you may have had.
The most interesting/unusual job that comes to mind would be when I was a live-on-location radio reporter. Radio broadcasting was a great experience which enhanced my public speaking abilities. This experience also was a great way to be involved in all the local events and engage with member of the community. A couple of other interesting jobs that I performed were a promotional model for NASCAR Canada, as well as a preschool teacher for a private daycare.
List any volunteering you have done.
- Link Crew Leadership – Grade 9 Mentor
- 30 Hour Famine – World Vision
- Georgian Bay Humane Society Volunteer
- Ontario Foodbank
- Feversham Ambassador Program Coaching
- Sick Kids Foundation
- Free the Children
- Youth Soccer Coach
- Canadian Mental Health Association
What is your most unusual talent?
My most unusual talent is that I fly drones professionally and have my basic pilots license.
Where is the most interesting place you have been to?
When I was 18 I travelled to the UK. This was a life-changing experience for many reasons. I was travelling alone and it was my very first time on an airplane. While traveling throughout the UK I was inspired by the beautiful architecture and culture. The most interesting part of my adventure was when I explored the roman baths in Somerset, England. The atmosphere was filled with history and every stone told a story.
What do you hope to be doing in ten years?
In 10 years, I hope to have advanced my role as a leader in the community, a have created a youth mentor program that promotes goal setting and success planning for children 10 – 13. As well I want to have travelled to at least 15 different countries, and to have a beautiful home with a plentiful garden and continue to surround myself with the ones I love. I want to be able to look back at the last 10 years and have no regrets; knowing that I followed my goals and made a difference.
Is there anything you would like to add that we haven’t asked?
I am proud to be Canadian, and nothing would be a greater honor than to represent Canada at the Miss Universe Competition and experience all the opportunity’s and responsibilities that come with the title.