Kathy Cheng, founder and president of Toronto-based Redwood Classics Apparel, (PPAI 696010, IS) has been named the 2022 Woman of Distinction by Ascend Canada.

The Award

• Ascend Canada is an organization with the goal of enhancing the “presence, visibility, and influence” of current and future Pan-Asian business leaders.
• The organization’s annual Leadership Awards gala, held May 19, presented honors to individuals who “exemplify personal and professional dedication and who have contributed value to the community.”
• The Woman of Distinction Award celebrates Cheng as a “woman who has helped advance the careers of other Pan-Asian women, through leadership, sponsorship, and by making a significant contribution to the community.” Ascend Canada referred to Cheng as a “visionary entrepreneur and a champion for women in business.”


Cheng founded Redwood Classics Apparel in 2009 as an in-stock premium apparel line that is “steadfastly committed to combating offshoring, putting Canada on the map as a leading destination for premium apparel manufacturing.”
• The founder has also received other distinctions including Advertising Specialty Institute (ASI) Power 50 List, Bay Street Bull Magazine’s inaugural Women of the Year List and Inc. magazine’s 100 Female Founders List for 2020.
• Cheng volunteers on the PPAI Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Task Force.

What They’re Saying

• “I am humbled and honored by this recognition from Ascend Canada, particularly as this award is presented during Asian Heritage Month,” Cheng says. “Receiving this acknowledgment from my peers deepens my commitment to support and mentor others and use my seat at the table to give them a platform to raise their own voices.”
• “In the face of the global pandemic, this year’s recipients of the Ascend Canada Leadership Awards have demonstrated resilience and empathy as mentors, entrepreneurs, and community champions,” says Manjit Singh, president of Ascend Canada. “Ascend Canada is proud to recognize six individuals at different career levels for their leadership and meaningful impact in their workplace and communities.”