Best Philanthropist: W. Brett Wilson

Captured by  Neil Zeller

Captured by Neil Zeller

Brett Wilson is perhaps most well-known for his appearances on CBC’s Dragon’s Den however, he is also one of Calgary’s greatest philanthropists. Due to his tremendous success as an investment banker and investor, he routinely invests in companies within the energy and agriculture sectors. Now, Brett regularly spends time speaking to students and business audiences on marketing, entrepreneurship and philanthropy.

Speaking on philanthropy, Brett views it as a social responsibility and opportunity to help create social and economic change through generosity and selflessness. He has shaved his head to support Kids’ Cancer Care, climbed Mount Kilimanjaro to support Alzheimer’s research, continues to make regular trips to Mexico with Youth with a Mission to build homes for low-income families and chronicles a lot of his philanthropic work in Alberta Venture magazine. Brett also supports military members and their families, advocates for mental health services and the treatment of eating disorders as well as funds the Wilson Centre for Domestic Abuse Studies at the Calgary Counselling Centre. As if that wasn’t enough, Brett regularly appears as a host for events supporting a wide array of charitable causes. For more insight into Brett’s philosophies surrounding philanthropy and entrepreneurship, we recommend picking up his 2012 book titled Redefining Success: Still Making Mistakes.

FIRST RUNNER UP: ARLENE DICKINSON

SECOND RUNNER UP: JIM & SUSAN HILL, ESKER FOUNDATION