Equestrian Canada (EC) is pleased to announce John Wightman has been appointed Director of Finance and Administration, effective Oct. 29, 2018.
Wightman brings extensive knowledge to the position, developed over 10 years of management experience covering all facets of finance and corporate services. He is intimately familiar with the mechanics of not-for-profit national sport organizations, having previously held the same role of Director of Finance and Administration with Speed Skating Canada. Wightman also offers insight gained from working in the private sector, as well as public Crown companies, and holds two professional accounting designations (CPA, CGA) through the Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario. His comprehensive skill set includes leading full-cycle accounting teams, audit management, risk management, compliance reporting, and corporate budget management.
Wightman’s appointment to Director of Finance and Administration will replace outgoing Finance Controller, Robert Westgarth.
“When I started in the Financial Controller position in June 2017, I knew mostly what I was getting into, having worked closely with Finance prior to taking over,” said Westgarth, who had originally joined EC as Senior Officer of Executive Services in the fall of 2016. “The months that followed drastically changed the operating environment at EC, and provided unforeseen challenges. I looked forward to taking on this responsibility, and knew what needed to be done to restore trust and faith in the work done at EC. The finance team has given their heart and soul to the many tasks they have been given, and I could not be more proud of the volume and quality of work that has been done in the last 16 months. We have come through a period of uncertainty to receive two clean audit opinions from KPMG, improved controls in Finance, updated coding and tracking, and more reliable reporting.”
Westgarth continued, “I am passing the reins to John Wightman, who is inheriting an improved and more stable financial system, an incredible and supportive Board of Directors, and a team at EC who are prepared under CEO Richard Mongeau’s steady guidance, drive and vision. I have no doubt that the skills and experience John brings will continue to improve processes, systems, and efficiency in Finance, and provide the renewed energy needed to cross the finish line. With that, I would like to express my gratitude for the opportunity to learn and grow in this place, and my hope that the current path will lead EC to its best days yet.”
As Director of Finance and Administration, Wightman will provide strategic support by ensuring the provision of timely and effective financial information and analysis. He will also be responsible for developing internal controls, risk management, human resources and operational processes and policies.
“My goals are to always create a positive work environment, to provide excellent customer service utilizing critical strategic thinking and high work energy, and to collaboratively engage stakeholders to help drive results,” explained Wightman. “I look forward to working with the EC team to achieve strategic corporate goals, and to build capacity to capitalize on future opportunities for EC membership.”