David Alston

David Alston, the chief marketing officer at Introhive, is being recognized for his work and his efforts to improve entrepreneurship. (Submitted by Dan Culberson)

Startup Canada has named David Alston, a technology entrepreneur from Saint John, its entrepreneur of the year.

Alston, from Grand Bay-Westfield, is the chief marketing officer for the data analytics company, Introhive, and a proponent for entrepreneurship in the region.

He is also co-winner in Startup Canada's enterprise promotion category, along with Peter Moreira, co-founder of Nova Scotia-based Entrevestor.

Introhive is one of five New Brunswick companies to win regional awards. 

"I loved being creative and I think, as an entrepreneur, whenever you see something, whenever you're doing anything and it's repetitive and you think, gosh, there's got to be a better way of doing something like this … that's the idea, you want to always solve problems," Alston said Tuesday on Information Morning Saint John.

Alston was part of a group of New Brunswickers who visited countries, such as Finland and Estonia, in 2013 to study their education systems. 

"New Brunswick can be the leader in digital government." - David Alston, Introhive

His foreign travels allowed him to see how other countries have incorporated coding into their education systems.

Now, Alston is involved in the digital transformation the New Brunswick government is attempting.

The initiative involves a digital lab that will help engage civil servants in making the transition.

"New Brunswick can be the leader in digital government, there's no reason why we can't," he said.

"We know government can be improved in terms of storing information. Instead of having your name and address stored 15 times in 15 departments, it should be stored once and everything should be accessed off that one record.

"So if you change your address, bam, everything is changed. That would make sense," Alston said. 

Alston was among the five companies, and six New Brunswick wins, at the Startup Canada regional awards.

  • Andrea Feunekes, co-founder and CEO of Fredericton's Remsoft received the Adam Chowaniec Lifetime Achievement Award.
  • Fredericton-based clothing line Wear Your Label received the Sustainable Development Award.
  • Ignite Fredericton received the award for Entrepreneurship Support.
  • Moncton's RtTech Software Inc. took the award for Innovation.

The awards will be handed out on Oct. 14 in Halifax.