Seven SBE alumni to be honoured at inaugural awards event

On Friday, September 27, 2013, Wilfrid Laurier University’s School of Business & Economics (SBE) will present its inaugural SBE Alumni Awards to seven outstanding graduates in recognition of a consistent demonstration of outstanding achievements.

The School of Business & Economics prides itself on the successes of its students and alumni, said Dean Micheál J. Kelly. The seven exceptional alumni recipients of our awards are leaders, entrepreneurs, innovators, philanthropists, and outstanding citizens. It is truly an honour to celebrate and recognize their tremendous successes and contributions.

The 2013 SBE Alumni Award recipients are:

Awarded to two SBE alumni as the highest honour given by the School of Business & Economics, this award recognizes leadership, initiative and contributions to the business world, the community, and their alma mater.

Jim Gabel, BBA ’85
President, adidas Group Canada
Jim Gabel is President of adidas Group Canada, which includes adidas, Reebok, TaylorMade and Rockport, and is one of Canada’s largest sports and style companies with 1,700 employees across Canada. Prior to this role, he was President of Reebok North America in Boston, Massachusetts. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Terry Fox Foundation as its Secretary. Gabel often returns to campus to share his knowledge with marketing students.

Lynn Oldfield, BBA ’84
President and CEO, AIG Insurance Company of Canada
Lynn Oldfield is President and CEO of AIG Insurance Company of Canada and also serves on its Board of Directors. She is a member of Laurier’s Campaign Cabinet to Build Canada’s Best Business School and the President’s Council of Advisors at Laurier. She is also past Chair of the Academic Council of the Insurance Institute of Canada. In 2011, she was named to the university’s 100 Alumni of Achievement.

Awarded to a Lazaridis MBA graduate who has achieved career success and has demonstrated a pattern of exceptional leadership and service.

David Yach, MBA ’88
Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer, Auvik Networks Inc.
David Yach has held senior leadership positions in technology companies for more than 20 years. He is currently Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Auvik Networks Inc. Yach has held numerous positions on Boards, including Kitchener Waterloo Community Foundation Board of Directors, NexJ Systems Inc, among others. He is co-inventor on 13 patents, has dozens of patent applications in process, and was co-inventor on BlackBerry’s second-ever Distinguished Patent. In 2011, he was named one of Laurier’s 100 Alumni of Achievement.

This award recognizes the exceptional career and community accomplishments of an SBE alumnus/a under the age of 35.

Greg Overholt, BBA ’08
Founder and Executive Director, Students Offering Support
Greg Overholt founded the group Business and Computer Students, which led to the creation of Students Offering Support (SOS) & a national, student-led charitable association that supports and develops student volunteers who tutor their peers and raise money to raise roofs for children in Latin America. Thanks to Overholt’s inspiring vision, SOS has tutored more than 25,000 students and has raised more than $1.4 million for sustainable development projects around the globe.

This award was established to recognize a Lazaridis MBA graduate who embodies an entrepreneurial spirit and business acumen and has demonstrated innovative business achievement.

Rick Endrulat, MBA ’01
Co-Founder, President and Chief Operating Officer, Virtual Causeway
Under Rick Endrulat’s leadership, Virtual Causeway has become a leading outsource provider of integrated sales and marketing services, and has been recognized as one of the country’s fastest growing and hottest emerging companies. He is a mentor to business students, coaching them to launch their own companies through the Schlegel Centre for Entrepreneurship. He is a member of the Canadian Youth Business Foundation’s Loan Committee, helping to provide financing to young entrepreneurs. He is also Treasurer of the Board of Directors for Sustainable Waterloo Region.

Awarded to a Lazaridis MBA graduate who has demonstrated exceptional generosity and outstanding charitable responsibility, and whose goodwill encourages others to take philanthropic leadership roles in the community.

Wendi Campbell, MBA ’08
Executive Director, The Food Bank of Waterloo Region
Wendi Campbell has worked for 25 years in the not-for-profit sector. In her current role as Executive Director of The Food Bank of Waterloo Region, she has distribution 2.9 million pounds of food to 26,800 people. Her work in building partnerships has resulted in significant change, outcomes, and community impact in Waterloo Region and across Canada. She also volunteers as a mentor with the Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation, among other organizations.

This award was established to recognize an alumnus/a who has furthered the interests of the School of Business & Economics through significant support, commitment and service.

Sourov De BBA ’05
Founding Partner, Stryve Group
Sourov De co-founded the Kitchener-based marketing firm, Stryve Group, in 2008. In a short time, he has managed the social media marketing for international companies, such as Intel and Xerox, and Laurier SBE graduate and Dragons’ Den star, David Chilton. In 2012, he was recognized as one of Kitchener-Waterloo’s Top 40 Under 40 for his community- and business-building efforts. He has donated countless hours to Laurier as a judge for ICE Week and the Launchpad Entrepreneurship Competition and Alumni Association board member, to name a few.