Principal – Nilson & Company, AFT TRIVEST Management Inc.
After completing a B. Comm. with an accounting major at UBC in 1976, Don articled with a large international accounting firm before starting Nilson & Company in 1979. During his articling period, he gained experience auditing large, sophisticated accounting systems as well as smaller private businesses. Don returned to UBC in 1980 to complete a Master’s degree in business, including his thesis entitled “Income Taxation of the Small Business Sector in Canada”.
Don attained his professional accounting qualification in 1981 and his financial planning designation in 1998. He has been registered since 1994 as a Portfolio Manager with the BC Securities Commission. In 2006, Don was admitted into the International Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners.
Since 1980, Don has lectured in accounting and tax topics for the University of BC, the Society of Management Accountants of BC, the BC Real Estate Association and the Certified General Accountants Association of BC. He presently teaches Taxation 1 on the Internet across Canada and internationally for the Certified General Accountants of Canada. He has been involved in developing national exams and curricula for the professional accounting bodies. Don delivers seminars on practice management, taxation and financial and estate planning issues across various financial services professions within Canada and internationally.
Don presently serves as National Treasurer of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers. He has served on the National Boards of the Financial Planning Standards Council and the Canadian Institute of Financial Planners, and over the years, as treasurer of various other charitable organizations. He has also served on the Provincial Board of his accounting body and chaired a provincial committee which oversees the adherence to professional standards in public accounting.
Don is a member of the International Brain Education Association, the Institute of Family Enterprise Advisors, the Global Speakers Network, the Financial Planning Association, the Canadian Federation of Progressive Accountants and a former advisor to 2020 Canada.
Don writes extensively on various topics for the internet and national and international publications. He presently serves on the Editorial Board of a professional publication, in which he also has a regular column.
Don has received career achievement recognition awards from the University of British Columbia, the Sauder School of Business, the Certified Management Accountants of Canada, the Certified General Accountants of BC and the Certified Management Accountants of Britsh Columbia. These awards have recognized his contributions to leadership, teaching, volunteerism, the university community and the financial services industry.
Don has participated in the Press lock-ups of the federal and provincial budgets.
Don oversees the day-to-day management of both firms. His primary focuses are business advisory services, corporate and personal tax, investment management and business year-ends.
Don grew up on the North Shore and never strayed very far. He and his family therapist wife, Alison, find retreat from the busy city at their little cottage on Gambier Island