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David C. Bentall
  • Vancouver, BC
  • Canada
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Professional Services
Occupation relative to family business
Family Business Advisor
Area of Expertise
With what family business organizations are you affiliated (e.g., FFI, FBN, IFERA, FERC, CAFE, IFB)?
Please share a little about yourself and your business.
David C. Bentall was born and raised in Vancouver and is a graduate of UBC and Harvard Business School.  He was instrumental in the successful domestic bid for the 2010 Olympics. He has been teaching an undergraduate course at UBC s Sauder School of Business on the dynamics of family run businesses since 2007 and also teaches a similar course to MBA students.  In 2010, he was honoured to receive the Teaching Excellence Award from UBC.

David worked for 20 years in his family’s businesses, focusing on real estate development at The Bentall Group. He also served for seven years as President and CEO of Dominion Construction. During that time, the company’s sales grew from $150 million per year to just under $300 million.

David is now President of his own firm, Next Step Advisors. Through this company, he provides succession consulting and executive/life coaching.  In 2006, David was formally recognized by the International Coaches Federation as a “Certified Professional Coach” and by the Family Firm Institute as a Professional Family Business Advisor.  In the fall of 2012,  as an acknowledgement of his expertise and experience, he was formally recognized as a Fellow of the Family Firm Institute, during their Global Conference in Brussels.

 David was Founding Chair of the Business Families Centre at UBC for five years from 2001 – 2006. He is the former Chair of Keats Camps and St. George’s School.

As a competitive water skier, David has won many awards and set numerous slalom skiing records. In 2009 and 2011, he earned the gold medal at the Canadian National Water Ski Championships, and repeated as champion again last summer. In January, 2012, David was ranked #1 male slalom skier in the world in his age group.

David is also an author and his first book, “The Company You Keep”, was awarded book of the year in two categories, at the Canadian Word Guild Awards in 2005.   David’s second book entitled “Leaving a Legacy – Navigating Family Business Succession” was released in the fall of 2012.

David has extensive experience in public speaking and teaching and he is very versed in a myriad of topics including: Family Business and Succession,  Balance, Aging parents, Raising children, Choosing to be an athlete.

David and his wife Alison have been married for over 30 years, have four fabulous children, and three wonderful grandchildren.

David C. Bentall's Blog



Family philanthropy is a wonderful arena though which families in business can develop many skills. Governance and financial literacy are two good examples. In addition, families can learn about group decision-making and how to constructively deal with disagreements. It is hard to imagine a safer or more productive way for a family to learn how to collaborate than having them wrestle with whether or not to donate funds to cancer research or to a…


Posted on June 7, 2013 at 4:30pm

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