David Lertzman was a valued senior instructor who had worked with Haskayne since 2000, but truly he was so much more. He was our spiritual leader, our Indigenous connection and our sustainability hero.
His energy made a lasting impact at the school.
Since 2004, David led the wilderness retreat, a week-long leadership immersive experience in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains that has been transformational for many Haskayne School of Business students. He lovingly invested over 100 hours to convert this retreat to Zoom to provide a rich experience for students to learn how to overcome challenges, build resilience and how to embody ethical leadership.
At the wilderness retreat, Lertzman focused on leadership topics in the larger context of sustainability, helping students clarify their core values, sense of purpose and call to service as leader.
He was deeply committed to ii’ taa’poh’to'p, UCalgary’s Indigenous Strategy. He brought to the forefront the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s recommendations, particularly resolution 92 — the role that business has to play in healing the past. Haskayne students learned in his classroom from the survivors of the residential school system and UCalgary benefited from his close relationships with local Elders. Future Indigenous business leaders were nurtured under his watch as the UCalgary liaison for the Ch’nook Scholars program.
He took his call to leadership seriously, but met the challenge with unbridled energy and positivity.
His contributions to scholarship over his academic career have helped influence best practices for the ecological, social and cross-cultural performance of both industries and communities.