Zita Cobb

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Zita Cobb, CM, is a Canadian businesswoman and social entrepreneur.[1][2] She launched Shorefast, a Canadian charity, with her brothers Tony and Alan Cobb on Fogo Island.[2][3][4]

Early life[edit]

Born into the Cobb family, Mary Zita's father was an inshore fisherman. She has six brothers with a fifteen year age gap between herself and the eldest. Zita battled and survived tuberculosis at the age of six which she credits for her confidence which she has carried with her later into her career.[5]


Zita studied Business at Carleton University, Ottawa.[6]


Starting with various oil companies in Alberta, Cobb worked her way to the top of her field. After ten years working for JDS Fitel and becoming the CFO, the company merged with Uniphase in 1999 becoming JDS Uniphase, one of the leaders in high-tech innovation.[7]

Fogo Island Inn[edit]

Opened in 2013, the Fogo Island Inn is a modern hotel perched on the edge of Fogo Island, Newfoundland and Labrador.[8]

Honours and awards[edit]

On June 30, 2016, Cobb was made a Member of the Order of Canada by Governor General David Johnston for "her contributions as a social entrepreneur who has helped revive the unique rural communities of Fogo Island and Change Islands through innovative social engagement and geotourism."[9]

Zita was inducted into Junior Achievement Business Hall of Fame in May 2018.[10]


  1. ^ Paterson, Lisa (25 October 2015). "Fogo Island economic success 'absolutely transferable,' Zita Cobb says". CBC News. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  2. ^ a b "Zita Cobb's 'social entrepreneurship' recognized with honorary degree". CBC News. 28 May 2015. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  3. ^ "Shorefast Foundation". Shorefast Foundation. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  4. ^ Mohamed, Farah (3 September 2012). "Millionaire returns home to Fogo Island to help". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  5. ^ Bartlett, Steve (2008). The Grit and the Courage: Stories of Success in an Unforgiving Land. St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada: Creative Publishers. pp. 99–118. ISBN 978-1-897174-29-6.
  6. ^ "Zita Cobb Delivers Lessons from Fogo Island - Carleton Stories". Carleton Stories. Retrieved 2018-03-23.
  7. ^ "2015 Festival of Architecture > Speakers". www.raic.org. Retrieved 2018-03-23.
  8. ^ "Meet Social Entrepreneur Zita Cobb | National Geographic". National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World. Retrieved 2018-03-23.
  9. ^ Globe and Mail Staff (June 30, 2016). "Canada's Honour Roll". Globe and Mail.
  10. ^ "JANL Business Hall of Fame". janlbusinesshalloffame.org. Retrieved 2018-03-23.