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Hollywood Mogul


Verna Lane has traced her French Canadian ancestry (via father J.P. Côté) back to 1578 Canadian Settlers from Montpellier, France. She is directly related to Madonna as 7th cousins, Hillary Clinton as 9th cousins and Céline Dion as 10th cousins. Through this same lineage (bloodline) she is also related to these other powerful women; Angelina Jolie, Alanis Morrisette, Camilla - Duchess of Cornwall (and wife of England’s Prince Charles), Beyoncé Knowles, Shania Twain, and Avril Lavigne. All of these dynamic women are descendants of Zacharie Cloutier and Xainte Dupont.

This might explain why Verna is such a trailblazer... she comes from a hardy stock of pioneering women who thrive on innovation and re-writing the rules!!

Book in progress: Pioneer Bloodline



   IT   A L L   A D D S   U P

Verna is a strong believer in time and money management. She batches her work to save on “prep time” which is why you might hear her say “I only do that on Tuesdays” (or some variation).

When it comes to time and money,
she is often known to say things like “that’s five dollars too much” or
that’s five minutes too long”.

It might seem petty to the casual observer... until they realize what’s happening in Verna’s mind. She is calculating how many minutes it adds up to on a weekly, monthly, or annual scale. Five minutes wasted each day is 35 minutes a week. She thinks about all the things she could do with 35 minutes a week.

Then her trained mind automatically calculates 2½ hours a month... or 30 hours a year. That’s almost an entire work-week! Imagine if people waste 5 minutes a day on multiple activities?! It boggles her mind to think of what can be done in those stolen moments. In fact, she beat out her competitors by working while they slept. For nearly a decade, Verna lived on 2-3 hours a night of sleep, so that she could be the best in her industry. That’s not something that she recommends doing, but it paints a picture of her devotion to the concept.

Oh, and that $5 a day?! adds up to $1,825 a year! Imagine what you could do with $1,825.. that’s actually the price of a nice little holiday or a big screen tv.

It all adds up. If we don’t control our time and our money, then they will control us.

That’s why minutes and dollars matter.




Verna is a veteran of the business world. She started her first business at 23, has 27 years of business experience and was awarded “Woman of the Year” by the age of 30.

Her time is divided between storytelling, entrepreneurial endeavors, and managing talent.

She has an extensive background in the studies of psychology, addiction, optimizing performance, interpersonal relationships and career management.

Her deep understanding of ‘human nature’ (psyche/spirit/tendencies) is an asset in managing artists ~ whether their needs are business related or sensitive in nature.

The role as producer gives her a front-row experience to understand innately what other producers are seeking from her performers.

She considers her role in the entertainment industry to be more pleasure than work. Her passion stems from a love of creativity, technology, multimedia and managing people. Verna loves to laugh and can often be heard saying:

comedy is important for the soul”

Her productions are largely comedic in nature and she is always on the look-out for new talent who need to perform... natural-born entertainers who do it for the love of the art.

Her motto:

Life is nothing if you don’t
love what you’re doing”





Verna lives and works in a “safe zone” that is free of harmful chemicals. In 1999, she developed an extreme sensitivity to everyday chemicals... things like newsprint, perfume, air fresheners, printed flyers and a long list of other common items. As long as she stays in her “safe zone” Verna is quite healthy.



“Verna is everything you’d expect a manager to be, and more. When she strikes a deal, there’s no fine print.”

Dave Jarritone
Actor, Comedian

2009 Jul


The Early Years

M U T A T E  F O R  S U R V I V A L

Self-employed people, whether they are entrepreneurs or independant entertainers, must mutate to survive. Verna learned this powerful lesson very early in her career...

Her first business plan called for a specific piece of equipment. It was the core asset that she required in order to make money. She worked tirelessly to find someone willing to sign for the 36-month lease, in order to secure this equipment.

For the first two months things went smoothly with her new equipment - until the sky fell in! Verna’s most essential ingredient was stolen - and it was NOT insured. Suddenly she was left without a tool to earn her revenue, but still making payments for the next 2 years on that stolen asset.

At that moment, she faced the loss of her dream and there was no job to return to (by this time the economy was in full recession).

What did she do?
What would YOU do?

She changed the game plan. Within days she restructured the entire business plan and broke into an even MORE unconventional strategy. She literally created the business plan around her LACK of assets. And it worked! Actually, she found it improved her ability to serve clients, increased revenue potential and cut down on time wastage.

That’s when she learned.. if you want to survive, you’ve got to be willing to mutate... without delay.






The Early Years

Verrna was a rebel from day one! She left home at 16 and built her first company at 23. She was a single mom with limited resources and a 2-year-old who shadowed every move she made!

Back in 1990 it was the pre-internet-era. It would be another 5 years before email would be taken seriously... and 9 years before “Google” officially came into existence! The concept of “dot-com millionaires” was a long way off and back then, anyone under 30 was considered to be too junior to be taken seriously. The business world was largely ruled by middle-aged men... not young men... not women... and certainly not YOUNG WOMEN! Verna was playing cards with a losing hand - or so it seemed - as she was up against blatant discrimination for her age, her gender and even her status as a single mother (which was still the kind of thing that caused people to “whisper”).

Right from the start of her first business, she faced unexpected challenges that set her back. What seemed like a great business idea to her (personal matchmaking with video profiles to pre-screen your suggested match) was perceived as unconventional and very controversial... Not just for lenders, but for society in general. Before she could sell to customers, she would first have to change the way they think... it was a tall order!

Under those conditions, start-up money was hard to come by. The application for loans, “easy-to-get” government grants, and even simple bank services were all declined. Lenders offered only discreet apologies that they couldn’t back her idea because of the potential for controversy.

Nonetheless, a pioneering spirit drove her forward. She believed there was a real need for her service. Besides, there was a recession looming that had shrunk her earning potential in the workforce. As the sole provider for her daughter, Verna was feeling the pinch. She had to be bold in order to survive and decided it was “business or bust”.

The first ten days of business presented shocking obstacles: the start of the Gulf War (Nov ‘90), which filled people with fear and a hoarding mentality. This in turn caused the immediate onset of a recession ... plus there was the government’s new 7% tax on all goods and services.. it began at the same time as the war and this put consumers in a foul mood.. buyers refused to buy unless merchants found creative ways to hide the maligned new tax (oops, that twist wasn’t in the business plan!)

It could not have been a tougher market to enter into. But there she was with a furnished office (financed by 3 months worth of tips from her job at Don Cherry’s Grapevine). At this point however, Verna had already left her job and had only $70 left to her name. She took a gamble and used the last of her money to place a tiny classified ad in a major newspaper.


H U S T L E  F O R  S U R V I V A L

The immediate agenda was to ‘hustle for survival” and 90-hour-work-weeks would be constant for the next decade. All the while she maintained a “daycare for one” at her office (turning storage rooms into playrooms and the curious daughter gleefully chatting up clients in the lounge!)... Verna kept a duplicate office at home in order to continue working through the night, while the little one slept. The process eventually took its toll on the young mother, but within 7 years she had turned the tables around and was honorably recognized with a
Woman of the Year” award. Sometimes ‘unconvential’ pays off in unexpected ways!


H O W  I T  T U R N E D  O U T

That first business lasted eight years and grew to 3 locations before it sold to a competitor in 1998.

Verna’s next business venture was an aquarium company she inspired in 1994 (co-founded by
Dave Jarritone). When it ran out of steam in 1998, she gave it an overhaul and took the helm as General Manager. It is still thriving and growing under her active management as it enters its 22nd year.

The company, known as, has unwittingly become the source of material for her developing sitcom Fish Spies.


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