Carissa Reiniger is a proud Canadian and New Yorker.   Born and raised in the prairies of Canada and found her second home when relocating toNew York in 2010.  Carissa lived in Toronto for 6 years in between and has been granted numerous opportunities to spend time in other countries and build some roots in other places in the world- most recently, Melbourne, Australia!

While building and running Silver Lining and advocating for small business is a huge part Carissa’s life (which you will read all about in just a second) there is much more to her story.

Knowledge of the small business sector comes natural to Ms. Reiniger - but she is also well versed in making big choices, trying and failing, fighting anxiety, believing in something bigger and people.  Carissa was home-schooled from grades one to nine after struggling in kindergarten with reading and a lot of anxiety.  She finally went back to school in grade 10 and experienced a radical shift from anxiety to accomplishment.

A graduate of the University of Alberta and was almost a theatre major, Carissa finally realizes why her gut pushed her to pursue Psychology instead.  Realizing quickly that being in school for 9 years in order to get my PhD was not going to work, Carissa  spent less time worried about grades and more time fixating about the rest of life.  During  her 4 years at the University she volunteered, had 4 jobs (at the same time!), ran summer camps, took big groups to Mexico to build houses, traveled and lived a lot of life.

Shortly after her last days at Alberta University Carissa moved to Toronto literally within 24 hours of her last exam and landed a job at a big advertising agency in Business Development.  With that being said, she quickly realized that working in a big company wasn’t her niche, so she quit – and started Silver Lining…..


Carissa Reiniger was 22 when she started Silver Lining.  Her motivation to start Silver Lining  was because of the big conundrum in her surrounding world.  With ties to various corporate people that have sacrificed their passion to make money and small business owners who have sacrificed money to pursue their passion, Carissa decided it was time to make money AND do what she loved (whiles helping others do so).   Silver Lining  developed with that mission at hand; Carissa Reiniger began with interviewing 400 small business owners to figure out why it is so hard to grow a small business, built the SLAP (Silver Lining Action Plan) methodology in response, and has spent the last decade building a company that helps small business owners grow.

Silver Lining has worked with over 10,000 small businesses in 9 countries around the world and continues to provide them with tactful ingredients in order to help them succeed.  This was achieved by completely changing their business model three times in those ten years to find a way that would allow them to help others fully while being sustainable.  While enduring big wins and big failures, Silver Lining continues to fip the funnel with continuos learning.

In addition to Silver Lining Carissa serves as an advisor, investor and board member of numerous other businesses. She wrote her first book in 2008 called Stories From Our Black Books and ended up turning it into a company that included a play version of the book. These plays were also produces by Carrisa Reiniger herself and will be in production across Canada (more coming on that project soon!).

Small Biz Expert

Carissa actively writes, speaks and advises on how to grow a small businesses and on issues related to small business. She is an extremely strong advocate of getting corporations and governments to think differently about how they work with small businesses. In addition to all of the Partnerships and Projects that Carissa Reinger continues to work on, she has put together two major movements, The Coalition Committed to Growing Small Business and Thank You Small Business.



Carissa has spoken at hundreds of events throughout her career.  Whether she is training small business owners on how to grow their businesses, speaking at events about the opportunity, responsibility and privilege of being a small business owner or speaking on a larger scale about the importance of small business to the economy, Carissa has spoken to tens of thousands of people and is always looking for new places to spread the message that small business is BIG and you can create the reality you want.

Sustainable Health Sustainable Wealth 

Inc’s GrowCo Conference

Thank You Small Business 10 City Tour


Released in 2008, this book captures lessons from Reiniger’s own growth journey as well the interviews she did with 100 additional business owners who built their businesses past 1M in revenue.

Released in 2010, this book teaches business owners how to build simple systems to get their head in the game and manage their overwhelming to do lists so that they always do what they say they will- including growing their businesses!

Released in 2013, this book tells us that we CAN change the economy one small business at a time and inspired the global movement that is on a mission to do exactly that.



Carissa started Thank You Small Business – a global movement in support of small businesses.  In partnership with companies like Citrix, American Airlines, Nespresso, OnDeck (and more) TYSB has given free support – and thanks – to over 25,000 small business owners around the world.  TYSB is far from done and this movement will continue to tell the message that small business is BIG.

Carissa’s passion for small business is just a piece of her larger determination to let people know that they CAN create the realities they want.  Life doesn’t have to be as it is – if you have a dream and are willing to work hard, you can create the life you want.   Her Creating Reality Project is a source of lessons and actual help for any person who is brave enough to have a big dream.


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