Sherry Shannon-Vanstone, President and CEO, Profound Impact

woman with blond hair smiling

Sherry Shannon-Vanstone didn’t grow up in the world of possible; at least not what was deemed possible for a little girl in the late 60s/early 70s. But, possible is the realm she chose to create for her adult life and business pursuits thanks to her love of and proficiency in mathematics.  Yes, life is a set of algorithms when you are an accomplished elliptic curve cryptographer among other algebraic structure and mathematical science constructs. 

Mathematician, entrepreneur, inventor, philanthropist, mentor and corporate board member are a few of the words used to describe the accomplishments of this trailblazer. Sherry has been involved in three very successful start-up ventures — Cylink, Certicom, and TrustPoint Innovation— and recently launched a new company called Profound Impact. Plus, she was a partner in the development of the information security system that still serves as the market distinction for Blackberry Rim; Certicom was purchased by Blackberry in 2009.  Profound Impact is more than the name of Vanstone’s new enterprise, launched in 2018, it’s also her brand promise. The other words integral to how Sherry Vanstone lives her life are compassionate, authentic and trustworthy.


Doctor of Laws (Honorary) Western University, London, Ontario 2019

M. Sc., Mathematics; University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, 1982

B. Sc., Mathematics and B. Sc., Spanish; Lee University, Cleveland, Tennessee, 1980


WCT-Entrepreneur of the Year 2020

100 Women/100 Years Milton Ontario 2019

WOW – the World Waterloo Region’s Female Innovator of the Year, 2015

Graduate Teaching Assistant Teacher of the Year, University of Tennessee, 1981