Skip to main content

Family Enterprise Legacy Institute Receives $5 Million Donation from Patricia Saputo

Patricia Saputo in front of the Telfer sign at the Desmarais building

Ottawa – Telfer School of Management at the University of Ottawa is proud to announce it has received a $5 million donation from Patricia Saputo, a multi-generational family enterprise leader and advocate, to provide thought leadership and training through the Family Enterprise Legacy Institute (FELI). 

The gift has created the endowed Patricia Saputo Distinguished Chair in Family Enterprise, which will support academic leadership for the institute and nurture long-term research projects aimed at developing best practices on critical topics for family enterprises. 

“This generous gift makes Ms. Saputo one of the University of Ottawa’s greatest benefactors,” says President and Vice-Chancellor Jacques Frémont. “She is among a growing number of successful Canadian women who are working to strengthen our communities through philanthropy. This new endowed chair will build much-needed research capacity in the field and help to empower the next generation of enterprising families by developing and sharing knowledge.” 

The chair will lead research efforts to explore which practices help family businesses thrive over generations and develop training programs to help family firms navigate their generational transitions and the constantly evolving marketplace. 

According to the Family Enterprise Foundation, ownership of more than 60% of family enterprises will be changing hands within the next decade and within seven years, close to 40% of next generation members will take control of their family enterprises. 

“Being in Canada’s capital, we are well-positioned to bring together the most promising minds in the field of family enterprise and create new knowledge and best practices for national and international dissemination,” says Telfer Dean Stéphane Brutus. “Thanks to Patricia’s transformational gift, the chairholder will have support for a sustained research program in this critical field.”  

As part of an enterprising family, Saputo values research-based best practices to help individuals involved in family businesses navigate their multiple, overlapping roles in both the family and the enterprise. For her, this donation is a chance to pay it forward to the family enterprise community. 

“I feel it’s my time to give back for all that I’ve learned and gained,” says Saputo. “The Family Enterprise Legacy Institute gives family members what they need so they can embark on their own personal journey to become responsible citizens, find their purpose and make decisions about what they really want in life.” 

About Patricia Saputo 

Patricia SaputoPatricia Saputo, co-founder and executive chairperson of Crysalia, started the Single Family Office for her immediate family in 1998, after Saputo Inc. went public and several years before the term “family office” was commonplace. Today, as a sought-after leader and advisor who serves on several boards and committees, Saputo speaks regularly on the topics of family wealth, women and wealth, governance, education, philanthropy and financial literacy.  

About the Family Enterprise Legacy Institute 

Family Enterprise Legacy Institute (FELI) logoThe Family Enterprise Legacy Institute (FELI) at the Telfer School of Management is creating an entirely new category of understanding and knowledge in the field of family business. At the core of the institute is a fundamental belief in the need to elevate and engage the next generation of enterprising families through thought leadership, training and mentoring to enable their true potential. 


About the Telfer School of Management 

Telfer Sign at the Desmarais BuildingThe Telfer School of Management at the University of Ottawa, located in the heart of Canada’s capital, brings together over 4,300 students, 200 professors and over 32,000 alumni. Our teaching, research and policy advice firmly align with our vision for a greener, healthier, happier, wealthier and more prosperous future for all. We empower our purpose-driven students through an experience that turns them into influential leaders and responsible managers. In the heart of Ottawa, we know that better business practice means a better Canada, and a better Canada means a better world.