Lindsay Gordon

One-on-One with
Lindsay Gordon

One-on-One is an ongoing series aimed at getting ‘behind the scenes’ with senior leadership at UBC.

On July 1, 2014, Lindsay Gordon became the 18th Chancellor of UBC.

A double alumnus of UBC, Gordon is the recently retired President and CEO of HSBC Bank Canada. He had a 25-year career with the bank, following 10 years in senior roles with Export Development Canada. He has served on the boards of numerous Canadian business and volunteer organizations.


If you weren’t in the field you are now, what role might have interested you?

LG: Transportation Executive.


What do you think of when you hear the word holiday?

LG: Quality time with the family.


In what instance would you say, I won’t?

LG: Compromise my values.


What quality do you most admire in a leader?

LG: Perseverance, humility, and the ability to deal with failure.


What is the song you sang out loud as a teenager?

LG: Dancing in the Street by Martha Reeves.


Who is your favourite historical figure?

LG: Winston Churchill.


What inspires you about living on the West coast?

LG: The natural beauty.


What makes you laugh?

LG: My children.


One thing on your desk you brought from home?

LG: Family picture.


What is the best advice you were ever given?

LG: As a leader, surround yourself with people from diverse backgrounds and with diverse opinions.


What do you think is the most important invention?

LG: The wheel.


If you could live anywhere, where would it be?

LG: Vancouver.


Who are your favourite writers?

LG: I don't have a single favourite; I like biographies and historical novels.


What do you value in your colleagues?

LG: Dependability, honesty and work ethic.


What advice would you give a young student just starting out?

LG: Follow your passion but be flexible; and find a good balance between hard work and having fun.


What is your greatest extravagance?

LG: My boat.


What would you like to be remembered for?

LG: Good husband and father.


What is your motto?

LG: Treat others as you would like to be treated yourself.


What is the one question that you wished we asked but didn’t?

LG: "Why are you so happy to be the new Chancellor of UBC?"


For you what makes UBC different?

LG: A great reputation and two beautiful campuses.

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