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WFP: Front and Centre for Manitoba’s success

October 2, 2015 — 

Paul Soubry, president and CEO of New Flyer Industries, is the chair of the University of Manitoba’s Front and Centre philanthropic campaign. Soubry wrote an op-ed that appeared in today’s Winnipeg Free Press where he shared his passion for the U of M.

It is Manitoba’s time for a transformational investment.

My father was an immigrant to Manitoba, who believed you must give back to your community more than you take. As a result, I am always looking for that opportunity to help out — to contribute to the place I call home.

When I was asked to volunteer as chairman of the Front and Centre campaign for the University of Manitoba, it became clear this was more than a give-back, it’s a transformational campaign that sets the stage for Manitobans, and for generations to come. It ticks every box.

To be honest, ensuring Front and Centre is a success is also selfish. I’ve had the benefit of working for two market-leading, Winnipeg-based companies (StandardAero and now New Flyer Industries). Like so many other Manitoba companies, we need a continuous supply of young, talented, educated and well-rounded people to continue to fuel the growth of our business.

Since graduating from the U of M in 1984, I’ve worked and travelled across Canada, the United States and in several countries around the world. I’ve seen first-hand that the most powerful engine of transformative change in a community is the presence of a robust research-intensive university.

That’s what the U of M is; an investment in the university is an investment in education, but also in the cultural well-being and economic vibrancy of our city and our province. It is an investment in life-changing research, in the medical infrastructure of Manitoba, in human rights and in sports and recreation and so much more. It is an investment in community initiatives that change lives, in future entrepreneurs who create jobs and in the professionals that my business and so many others need to design, manufacture, deliver and support products and services. No other initiative has such a wide range of implications for the future prosperity of our province and our young people.



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