2006 Winner: ASTech Special Award
Community Leader Supports Medical Research In Alberta
Ask Alvin Libin to provide his formula for success and he will reply: “Hard work, honesty and teamwork; putting the right people in the right place to do the job; and luck.” But ask those who have worked with him and they will add “a remarkable business acumen, discipline, and strong leadership and mentoring skills” to that list.
Mr. Libin is a Calgary native with a long record of service to the province, particularly in the areas of health care research and education. Born in 1931 to Russian immigrant parents, Mr. Libin inherited a strong work ethic and built a successful business portfolio with interests in real estate, oil and gas and financial services.
Supporting the Medical Community
He also developed a solid reputation as a community leader. From 1980 to 1990 Mr. Libin was Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Calgary’s Foothills Hospital, and from 1990 to 2000 he served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research.
A long-time supporter of the University of Calgary, he was involved with two fundraising campaigns to support health research activities and made investments of his own. The University’s facilities now include the Libin Gene Therapy Unit, which funds research to explore new therapies for heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and cancer, and the Libin Cardiovascular Institute, which works to integrate and strengthen cardiac, research, education, treatment and patient care in Calgary and southern Alberta.
The Gene Therapy Unit and the Cardiovascular Institute were made possible through the auspices of the Alvin and Mona Libin Foundation. The fact that these two important contributions bear the name of both Mr. Libin and his wife of more than 50 years reflects the important role Mona played in his life, and their commitment to the community.
For six years, Mr. Libin was Chairman of the Alberta Ingenuity Fund, an organization created to nurture science and engineering research and discoveries in Alberta, a position which he fulfilled until May 2006.
Mr. Libin has received numerous honours for his community service. He was named a Paul Harris Fellow by the Rotary Club International and holds an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree from the University of Calgary. In 2002, he became an Officer of the Order of Canada. That same year, the Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research created the Libin Prize in Cardiovascular Research. In 2004, Mr. Libin received the Alberta Order of Excellence Award.
Today, Mr. Libin is President and CEO of Balmon Investments Ltd., a management services and investment company, and also serves on several corporate and community boards. He is also a Director and Co-owner of the Calgary Flames hockey club.