Team

Based in Western Canada, our seasoned management team has a long and successful track record of building, acquiring, growing and financing profitable businesses.

Our goal is to create long-term wealth for shareholders by building and maintaining a portfolio of strong, stable and profitable Western-based companies, and helping them to grow.

Scott Tannas – Chief Executive Officer, President, Secretary and Director

Scott Tannas is the Founder of Western Financial Group (“Western”), having served as its CEO from 1996 to 2014. Western was founded as a Junior Capital Pool in 1996. From its headquarters in High River, Alberta, Mr. Tannas oversaw the building of Western through more than one hundred acquisitions, and a number of strategic initiatives. Today, Western is a diversified financial services organization with more than $1 Billion in annual sales. 1800+ employees provide nearly 1 million customers with insurance and investment products and services. The company’s network of more than 160 offices stretches across the West from Winnipeg to the Pacific coast.

On April 15, 2011, after 15 years as a publicly traded company, Western was acquired by Quebec based Desjardins Group, in a $440 million transaction. In the time between the IPO in 1996, and Western’s exit from the public market in 2011, the company’s stock price rose 1038%.

Scott is a director of Western and its federally regulated subsidiary Western Life Assurance Company. He is also the Lead Director of Rocky Mountain Dealerships Inc. (RME:TSX).

In addition to his business activities, Scott is active in public service. In a Province-wide election on April 23, 2012, Albertans elected Scott as a “Senator in Waiting”, and on March 25, 2013 Prime Minister Harper appointed him to the Senate of Canada.

Richard Moore – Chief Financial Officer and Director

Richard Moore is a 35 year veteran of the Canadian Investment Industry, having held Officer positions at Raymond James Ltd, Canaccord Wealth Management and previously Vice President at Richardson GMP. Mr. Moore’s area of expertise has been in the raising of capital for start-up and micro-cap companies. He has been involved in the Capital Pool Program since its inception, having been the lead advisor on over 50 Capital Pool companies and their subsequent financings post qualifying transactions. He has financed companies across multiple sectors, including financial services, financial technology, bio technology, health care, retail, food services, aerospace, and global security

Mr. Moore played a lead role in educating participants in other jurisdictions about the Capital Pool Program in advance of its expansion from Alberta to all Canadian provinces. Mr. Moore formerly sat on the Local Advisory Committee of the TSX Venture Exchange.

Mr Moore is a graduate of the Executive Development Program of the McGill Executive Institute.

He is an endurance athlete, and through these endeavours he raised money for many charitable organizations.

Shafeen Mawani – Chief Operating Officer

Shafeen served as a strategic advisor to Western‘s Board of Directors since July 2016. He subsequently was appointed Chief Operating Officer in April 2017.

He has over ten years of experience advising clients in a variety of sectors including energy, infrastructure, power and utilities and P3 projects. Shafeen started his investment banking career in Toronto as an associate at CIBC World Markets and in Calgary at UBS Securities Canada as Director. In total, Shafeen has advised on over $3.5 billion in acquisitions and executed over $4 billion in debt and equity offerings in the Canadian and U.S. marketplace.

Shafeen completed his MBA from the Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario and a Bachelors in Actuarial Science from Simon Fraser University. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst Charterholder and an Associate from the Society of Actuaries.

Stacey Cross – Controller

Stacey is a Chartered Professional Accountant with extensive experience in financial accounting and reporting, tax, auditing and management reporting. Prior to joining Western, Stacey worked in a number of financial accounting lead roles, including most recently with Western’s first equity investment, GlassMasters Autoglass, guiding them through the acquisition phase of the business.

Stacey obtained her CA designation at a national CA firm working in wide range of industries performing both financial and tax advisory work. Since that time, she has worked in various controller roles and at an business advisory firm where she prided herself in working with business owners helping them achieve their business goals.

James F. Dinning – Chairman of the Board

Jim Dinning is a corporate director. In addition to chairing the board of Western Investment Company he chairs Russel Metals Inc as well as serving on various other boards of private companies, foundations and trusts. He was chair of Western Financial Group Inc. from 2005 to 2017 when the company was acquired by Wawanesa. He is the past chair of Liquor Stores North America Ltd and Export Development Canada and a former director of Parkland Fuel Corp, Finning International Inc and Shaw Communications Inc. From 1997 to 2004 Mr. Dinning was a senior executive of TransAlta Corporation.

Until 1997, Mr. Dinning held several key positions during his 11 years as a Member of the Legislative Assembly in Alberta, including Provincial Treasurer from 1992 to 1997.

Mr. Dinning is a Member of the Order of Canada and a Fellow of the Institute of Corporate Directors. He is Chancellor Emeritus of the University of Calgary following his tenure as Chancellor from 2010 to 2014.

 

Willard Yuill – Director

Bill Yuill is Chairman and CEO of The Monarch Corporation, a private company with corporate offices in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada. The Company has four active divisions related to transportation, real estate, sports properties and public and private investment portfolios.

He was previously Chairman and CEO of Monarch Communications Inc., the parent Company of Monarch Broadcasting Ltd. and Monarch Cablesystems Ltd.

Mr. Yuill is currently a Director of Shaw Communications Inc. (1999) and is Chairman of their Human Resources and Compensation Committee. He is a Director of the Western Investment Company of Canada Ltd. (2016). He serves as a Director of McKenzie Meadows Golf Club (1994), a Trustee of the St. Andrew’s College Foundation (2001) and a Governor of the Western Hockey League (1989). He served as a Director of the Western Financial Group from 2004 to 2011.

Mr. Yuill received the Milner Fenerty Pinnacle Award in 1995, the Queen Elizabeth Golden Jubilee Medal in 2003 and the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2013. In 2006 he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Lethbridge, in 2016 was inducted into The Alberta Order of Excellence, in 2017 was awarded an Honorary Applied Degree from the Medicine Hat College and will be inducted into the Calgary Business Hall of Fame in October 2017.

The Yuill Family Foundation was established to support certain local regional and national charitable projects.

He is a graduate of the Young President’s Organization, Alberta Chapter and is a member and past chairman of the World President’s Organization, Alberta Chapter.

Bill has been involved in community organizations including the Medicine Hat College Foundation, the Medicine Hat and District United Way and the Medicine Hat Family YMCA.  He also served on the Alberta Economic Development Authority.

Bill and his wife, Elizabeth, reside in Medicine Hat, Alberta.

Robert Espey – Director

Robert Espey is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Parkland Fuel Corporation (“Parkland”), joined Parkland in November, 2008 as Vice President Retail Markets. Throughout his career, Mr. Espey has held a variety of senior management roles across a diverse group of industry sectors including manufacturing, international consulting, and the Canadian military.

Prior to joining Parkland, Mr. Espey spent three years with FisherCast Global Corporation where he was the Executive Vice President in charge of worldwide sales and marketing and operations, and was ultimately promoted to President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Espey was also Vice President of Algonquin Automotive, spent a total of six years in London, England primarily with Computer Sciences Corporation, was a partner with What If Impact, a London based innovation consultancy, and spent four years in the Canadian Navy as a commissioned officer.

Mr. Espey holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Mechanical) from Royal Military College and his Masters in Business Administration from the University of Western Ontario.

Dr. Kabir Jivraj – Director

Dr. Kabir Jivraj serves as the Managing Director at AgeCare Ltd. and is instrumental in its success. Dr. Jivraj has acute understanding of health care and the seniors market and extensive business acumen and experience. He served as Senior Vice-President and Chief Medical Officer at Alberta Health Services – Calgary Health Region from 1999 to 2002. He also served as the Vice Dean of the University of Calgary, Faculty of Medicine from 2000 to 2002.

Dr. Jivraj has been a Clinical Professor at the University of Calgary, Faculty of Medicine since 2001. He has taught undergraduate and graduate students since 1988. He received the Associations Medal of Distinguished Service in May 2000. He was honoured in 2005 as one of the 100 Alberta Physicians of the Century by the Alberta Medical Association and the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada from the Royal Course of Physicians & Surgeons of Canada completed in 1985 and Institute of Corporate Directors with the ICD.D Corporate Governance College completed in 2006. Dr. Jivraj obtained his Bachelor of Medical and Surgery degree from the London University, UK, in 1981.