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John Burnside

Chairman of the Board & CEO

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John Burnside is Chairman & CEO of the Burnside group of companies which includes: R.J. Burnside & Associates Limited, R.J. Burnside International Limited and is a Director of Neegan Burnside Ltd.  Each of these firms share the same corporate values and practices, espoused and personified for the last 50 years by our founder and John’s father, Bob Burnside.  These values articulate the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of what makes our culture unique and the manner in which we treat our clients, our communities, and indeed, each other.  The passion for these values and for creating a sustainable employee-owned organization where people relationships matter, both internally and externally, has been John’s vision for the firm since he re-joined the firm in a leadership capacity in 2005.

Prior to taking on his current role, John served for 12 years as President of R.J. Burnside & Associates Limited.  Farther back, during the 80’s and 90’s, John served in a multitude of roles at R.J. Burnside both in the office and in the field.  Earlier in his career starting prior to going to University, John spent years in surveying and construction support field roles and could often be found working on community infrastructure servicing projects in remote northern communities within Canada.  Later on, his field of discipline centered around water quality and supply projects, both in surface water and groundwater applications in First Nation and rural Ontario communities.  In the mid-90’s, John was one of two founding members of our Winnipeg office.  Interspersed over these years, he advanced his engineering career by obtaining a Bachelor of Applied Science, Civil Engineering from the University of Waterloo, Master of Science (Environmental Engineering) from the University of Guelph and then graduating from Harvard Business School (Master of Business Administration).

His experience as an engineer, his years of working with diverse clients, combined with his leadership skills and post-MBA experience in business consulting at Satov Consultants Inc. and Bain & Company, provide him with the tools and expertise to lead our organization in an increasingly collaborative industry and complex business environment.  John’s leadership is best exhibited by his passion for creating and sustaining a meaningful and aligned culture of caring and committed colleagues.

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