Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

U of M grad to get international business award

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THE selection committee for one of the province's most prestigious business awards didn't have to look far to find this year's recipient.

Stu Clark, an entrepreneur in Alberta's oil and gas sector, will receive the International Distinguished Entrepreneur Award from the Associates of the I.H. Asper School of Business this fall.

"I'm very honoured to have been chosen," said Clark.

The 58-year-old is well-known at the University of Manitoba. The business school's entrepreneurship centre bears Clark's name and he has donated millions of dollars to the school.

Arni Thorsteinson, chairman of the Associates' IDEA committee, said there's no question Clark is one of the most successful entrepreneurs to hail from Manitoba.

"He started a company (Pinnacle Resources in 1986) from scraping together a couple of million dollars and later sold it for $1 billion. That's superb entrepreneurship," he said.

Clark is only the fourth Manitoba-born winner of the IDEA, following Izzy Asper, Gerry Schwartz and Albert Cohen. He's a major player, even if he isn't based in New York or London.

"We didn't lower the bar for someone from Winnipeg," Thorsteinson said.

Clark, who earned a bachelor of commerce degree from the U of M in 1976, is chairman of Storm Resources Ltd. and Rock Energy Inc.

His involvement in Winnipeg isn't restricted to business-related matters. He became a director of The Friends of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights earlier this year. He said he believes the museum is just one project among many -- the new Winnipeg Blue Bombers stadium, the new airport and the return of the NHL are a few others he mentioned -- that has Winnipeg at a very positive point in its history.

The IDEA will be presented to Clark at a black-tie dinner at the Winnipeg Convention Centre on Sept. 27. He will also receive a custom-made pure gold medal produced by the Royal Canadian Mint specifically for the IDEA.

Past IDEA recipients include Sir Richard Branson (Virgin Group), Murray Edwards (Canadian Natural Resources), Dame Anita Roddick (The Body Shop), Howard Schultz (Starbucks), Jim Balsillie (Research In Motion) and the husband-and-wife team of Gerry Schwartz and Heather Reisman (Onex Corp. and Chapters).

geoff.kirbyson@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 10, 2012 B5

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