DUniv. 2014

Honorary Doctorate Recipient

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Louise Wendling is a native of Montreal who graduated from the University of Montreal with a BA in English literature. She began her career in the public service before making the leap to the private sector in 1976 at The Hudson’s Bay Company.

In 1986, she and two other Hudson’s Bay colleagues founded Price Club, where she developed and implemented the wholesale sales concept and culture. Louise Wendling began as the VP Merchandizing; less than six years later, she was promoted to Senior VP for Eastern Canada. In 2001, she was named to the executive board of Costco Wholesale International, and was appointed Costco Wholesale Country Manager for Canada, encompassing a wide range of operational and strategic responsibilities.

Her activities within Costco also include membership in the Diversity Committee, which works to achieve a diverse workforce throughout the company. She also founded, and has presided over, Journeys Network, a 7000-member organization within Costco that aims to help women further their careers, form intra-women networks, develop women-based business solutions, and ensure that women who leave the company for family reasons feel welcome to return.

Louise Wendling is also involved in many philanthropic causes, both corporately and personally. Costco donates 1% of profits to local and national non-profit programs, including the Children’s Miracle Network, the United Way, the Breakfast Club of Canada and the Backpack Program. On a personal note, Louise has contributed to the Jewish General Hospital, CDLS Foundation, Myriam Foundation and CHEO. She is a board member of the Retail Council of Canada and in 2012, she was named CEO of the Year by the Ottawa Business Journal.

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