Brian Hesje: Visionary and CPA leader
Brian Hesje FCPA, FCA, MBA is an accomplished Alberta business leader, writer, and community builder. Over the course of his distinguished career, Brian has brought intellect, grace, and a sense of humour to all he has done. In doing so, he has inspired an untold number of Albertans to appreciate their strengths and challenged them to think of new and more-meaningful ways to define success and achievement.
Born into a Saskatchewan farming family, Brian’s first career was as a history teacher. From there, Brian moved into the world of business, earning his MBA and an accounting designation. After spending eight years at an accounting firm, he spent over 30 years in various roles with Fountain Tire, where he rose to the positions of Chair and CEO. Under his leadership, Fountain Tire experienced substantial growth and expansion in Canada.
He has an extensive record of board service in Alberta in both the private and public sectors, including serving as Chair of the Board of ATB Financial and sitting on the Board of NAIT. He has also sat on the boards of several non-profit organizations, including STARS Air Ambulance and the Rick Hansen Foundation, among many others.
For his accomplishments, Brian has earned several awards, including the Alberta Centennial Medal, the University of Alberta Alumni Honour Award, and the Augustana College Distinguished Alumni Award. He was also recognized with the Chartered Professional Accountants of Alberta’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2017, having previously received the profession’s Fellowship honour in 2000 and the Distinguished Service Award in 1996.
Brian is the author of two books (and counting) that focus on his perspectives on leadership, defining success, and the value and importance of inquisitiveness. With humour and wisdom, Brian has imbued his books with deft storytelling ability to convey his persuasive insights on how to live life to its fullest.
It was an unprecedented gift from Brian Hesje in 2018 that led to the establishment of the Hesje CPA Knowledge Centre by the CPA Education Foundation. In alignment with Brian’s personal vision, the Centre is dedicated to sharing the skills, experience, and knowledge of the CPA profession with all Albertans, and particularly with younger Albertans from all walks of life.
“For me, the essential trait to be successful is a sense of humour. I can’t remember a successful day that had no laughter,” Brian has written. Through his gift, Brian has made it possible for many, many Albertans to benefit from his sense of humour and his commitment to helping others succeed.
Dedicated leader Brian Hesje (centre) discusses leadership and business with CPA Alberta CEO Rachel Miller (left of centre) and a group of engaged professionals.
Brian Hesje (centre) laughs and listens as a group of young professionals discusses careers, leadership, and other topics.