Skip to content
Telfer alumnus Bernie Ashe can soon add the University of Ottawa's Alumni Association Award of Excellence to his lengthy list of accolades that he's amassed during his successful career as a business leader. On Saturday May 9, Bernie will be presented with the Alumnus of the Year Award because of his continued involvement with the Telfer School and for his outstanding leadership skills in the business community.
Bernie first came to uOttawa to study science to be a doctor. After his first year, he found the program too challenging. A lot of his friends at the time were enrolled in the Telfer School and for Bernie who was yearning for more balance between working hard and having fun, felt that Telfer was a better fit for him. By his second year at uOttawa he was enrolled in the Business Administration program and didn't look back.
Bernie was very active socially during his time at uOttawa. Since Telfer didn't have any clubs established when he studied here, or at least to his recollection, Bernie stayed active by playing intramural sport, and even played one varsity season of Gee-Gees hockey. "I probably had more fun than I should have", laughed Bernie. "Today there are so many choices of clubs and associations for Telfer students that I wish would have been available back then. It's great to see what has become of the School."
After graduation, Bernie became a Chartered Accountant and then occupied a number of jobs in the high tech industry until he landed the Chief Operating Officer of Business Affairs position with the Ottawa Senators from 1990-1997. Afterwards, he ran a publicly traded high tech company, spent several years leading a company in the Lumber industry and for the past two years has been the CEO of the Ottawa Sports and Entertain Group.
"The adjustment from high school through University in anyone's life is about building character and gaining confidence and Telfer did that for me. My time there allowed me to establish my own character and self-confidence and made me develop my competitive instinct. Ultimately, Telfer gave me the opportunity to build my leadership skills that helped position me to lead companies that I have been fortunate to do in my career", proudly exclaims Ashe.
When asked what advice he would give to students about life after graduation, Bernie says that patience is a virtue and that one must look at their career as a series of steps. "Take one step at a time. Get some experience and gain experience. Look for opportunities within that step and then take another step. Each step will take you to the next opportunity that will help develop your career. And I encourage students everywhere to just think about the next step in their career as an important one."
Bernie strongly feels that it's important to give back because "we are all in this together; business, community, universities. We have to help each other. Executives and businesses everywhere have to connect with universities and students and professors to help give feedback on curriculum, on graduating students, etc. Connecting with Telfer allows me to have some exposure, feedback and input on what the School is working on, their focus. Over the years with my involvement with the mentorship program and the CEO in Residence series, I've always come away being very impressed and feeling the University is on the right track. The quality of the students at the Telfer School never ceases to astound me.
The Bachelor of Commerce (BCom) provides students a complete business education: academic excellence, a rewarding student life, and distinctive personal and career development opportunities.
Stats: 17478 Alumni
The Telfer MBA gives students the power to outperform: lead people, take charge of organizations, allocate resources effectively and articulate a strategic vision—all fundamental skills of high-performing business leaders.
Stats: 4860 Alumni
Our Executive MBA Program provides a uniquely stimulating and rigorous professional development experience that will enhance your general management capabilities. The program opens up global, practical and relevant business experiences for ambitious professionals—experiences these students use to explore international business, experience management through hands-on consulting projects and gain the leadership skills necessary for success in today’s global economy.
Stats: 1017 Alumni
Our Master of Health Administration (MHA) provides students with the expert knowledge, practical skills and hands-on training they need to translate their passion for health into genuine results for Canadians.
Stats: 961 Alumni
Our Master of Science in Management (MSc) equips students with the knowledge and skills to examine management challenges from a variety of viewpoints, conduct informed research, and uncover findings that can be used by managers to solve pressing problems.
Our Master of Science in Health Systems (MSc) prepares students to help healthcare practitioners and managers achieve the most vital outcomes of modern healthcare: lower costs, better patient outcomes and improved healthcare services. This program trains them to “think differently” and become an agent of change.
The Telfer PhD in Management is unique and focused, designed to create the depth and breadth that makes an impact in business – and the world. Our unique approach surrounds our students with unusual and exceptional opportunities for learning and development – just one of the many reasons we are so proud of our PhD in Management program.