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It is with heavy hearts that MNP announces Don Penny, founding partner and former CEO of MNP, passed away on November 28, 2019 in Brandon General Hospital, at the age of 80. Penny’s legacy as a friend, mentor, pioneer and true visionary will endure for years to come.
“As we reflect on Don’s legacy, we are filled with admiration and gratitude for his vision, courage, leadership and passion. He will forever be remembered for his entrepreneurial drive to take risks and pursue a vision of a different type of accounting firm — one that saw a future in a holistic offering of professional services and that served clients in diverse markets across Canada,” said Jason Tuffs, MNP’s Chief Executive Officer.
“Don put in place the elements that allowed the firm to grow rapidly, but gracefully — from its beginnings as a regional accounting firm based in Brandon, Manitoba, to the National firm we have become today. MNP is the firm that was born out of Don Penny’s vision.”
Penny was born and raised in Virden, Manitoba. His small-town roots played a role in enticing him to join the Brandon firm Laird Sprague, the predecessor to MNP (Meyers Norris Penny), as an articling student in 1962. He joined the partnership in 1965, and in 1977 took over the leadership of Meyers Norris Penny as CEO. Don retired from the partnership in 1998 and from the MNP board in 2005.
“Don’s warmth and charisma also made him the consummate people person who was known to lead with both his head and his heart. He brought energy and laughter to every room he walked into and wherever he went,” said Tuffs.
Throughout his career, Penny steadfastly committed to serving his community and profession. As he was building MNP, Penny was also a force in the development of his profession — being heavily influential in shaping the accounting industry in Canada.
Penny sat on various committees and in multiple board positions for the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Manitoba (ICAM), becoming the first president from outside Winnipeg in the organization’s hundred-year history. He was made an FCA by the ICAM, who also awarded him a lifetime achievement award in 2006. Nationally, Don served on the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA) board of governors and became the chair of the CICA in 1997 – 1998.
Penny served on dozens of community organizations and corporate boards and was a mentor to many entrepreneurs across the country. His service earned him many accolades — including an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Brandon University and the inaugural Courage Award from Assiniboine College. He also received Canada’s highest civilian honour when he was appointed Member of the Order of Canada for his outstanding lifetime contributions to business, commerce and industry in 2005.
MNP’S FOUNDING PARTNER LEAVES A LASTING LEGACY
“MNP sends its sincerest condolences to the Penny family. We honour Don’s contributions to the firm, his profession and his community through an uncompromising commitment to the values and passions he held dear,” said Tuffs. “His legacy will always be a guiding light for MNP, and we are forever grateful for his wisdom, vision and — most importantly — his friendship.”
Penny is remembered by his loving wife Sandra, their four children and five grandchildren.
Cards of condolences are appreciated by the family, and can be mailed to MNP Winnipeg at True North Square, 242 Hargrave Street, Suite 1200, Winnipeg, MB, R3C 0T8, c/o Leanne Penny.
For more information, please contact:
Randy Mowat, Senior Vice President, Marketing & Communications, at 403.608.1424 or
Jason Tuffs CPA, CA, Chairman of the Board & Chief Executive Officer, at 403.444.0150 or
Suite 2000, 330 5th Ave. S.W.
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