Alumni Spotlight

Ryan SahotaName: Ryan Sahota, CPA, CA

Program: BBA in Accounting and Finance

Grad Year: 2007

Employed as: Chartered Professional Accountant and Managing Founding Partner, Pacific Chartered Advisors LLP

Employer website:

What are your primary responsibilities at your job? I mostly work with tax problems involving corporate and personal clients. My responsibilities outside of my tax role involve growing and steering the firm into the necessary areas where I think we will succeed, and ensuring that we are being as socially responsible as possible.

What is your favourite part of your work? The favourite part of my job is interacting with entrepreneurs, work leaders and business owners from all walks of life who bring different and fresh perspectives to how business is done, and life in general. It is a real blessing to work with so many diverse people and problem solve with them.

How do you like to unwind/handle stress? I’m usually at the gym or playing basketball. Riding my motorcycle is the best stress reliever as you have to focus on the road and put out everything else in your mind.

Who is the most famous person you've ever met? When I was playing basketball in 2000 at the BC Summer Games I got to meet Steve Nash who was sitting in the bleachers behind me watching the games being played. It was amazing as he hadn’t quite become a household name just yet but it was cool to see him still repping the local high school basketball scene.

If you had a time machine and could have lunch with anyone living or dead, who would it be? This one is tough. I would like to travel back in time to meet Muhammad Ali in the 1960s for lunch. He changed the culture of North America, had a global impact and was one of the fiercest competitors of our time.

Where does your inspiration come from? From always being the underdog and being told that I would never succeed with business. It places a large chip on my shoulder and gives me the drive to fuel my motivation and inspiration to do better each day.

Where do you see yourself in one, five or 10 years? I see myself, and more specifically Pacific Chartered Advisors as being one of the top local advisory firms in the Lower Mainland and establishing itself as a force in certain industry sectors for the way we think as a team. More significantly, I would like to see the firm be a strong proponent in giving back to the community and addressing needs where prevalent.

What are you most proud of? Being the first person in my family to graduate with a post-secondary degree and to achieve my CA designation.

Greatest advice for life? Don’t be scared to achieve what you dream of – if you put your mind to it, you will accomplish anything. You don’t want to look back and have regrets and say “I wish I had done that…”.

Favourite KPU moment? Establishing the connections with other successful Kwantlen individuals who have helped me through my professional career.

What's the last book you read? The Gambler – Fyodor Dostoyevsky.

What's currently on your iPod? Toss up between Foo Fighters and Eminem – either one gets me pumped in the gym.