Speaker Bios

CAAA Ethics Workshop Speaker Bios

Speaker Bios

Blake Phillips

Blake Phillips is the Deputy Director of Programs and Student Experience at the School of Accounting and Finance at the University of Waterloo. Dr. Phillips oversees program development for the 5 accounting and finance offered by the School, including the recent addition of the Sustainability and Financial Management Program jointly offered with the Faculty of Environment.  Blake received a Bachelor of Science from the University of British Columbia in 1996, a Master of Forestry and Master of Business Administration from the University of Alberta in 2004 and a Ph.D. in Finance also from the University of Alberta in 2009.  Prior to commencing his doctoral studies, Blake was a Registered Professional Forester and Registered Professional Biologist in British Columbia where he was a managing partner with an ecosystem restoration consulting firm.


Vern Albush

Vern Albush is Director of Sustainability for Federated Co-operatives Limited (FCL), a manufacturer and wholesaler of fuel, food, home building supplies, and agricultural products.  His early professional life began in Archaeology, but after completing his master’s degree in Environmental Science and Public Policy, it shifted to environmental management and later to social responsibility and environmental sustainability.   He’s worked for environmental and government relations consulting firms (large and small), the Alberta government, privately-owned corporations, and co-operatives (i.e., Servus Credit Union and now FCL).  In that time, he’s observed how civil society, governments, and corporations have dealt with the environmental and social impacts of economic prosperity. Today, he’s witnessing a growing interdependency and integration of finance and accounting with sustainability in governments and business.