James ‘Jim’ Balsillie is a Canadian entrepreneur and philanthropist. He is the former co-CEO of Research in Motion (BlackBerry), and resigned from the Board as a result of strategic differences with Thorsten Heins. Balsillie is also the founder of the Balsillie School of International Affairs, the Canadian International Council and the Centre for International Governance Innovation. Today, Balsillie has an estimated net worth of $731 million, and is considered to be one of the wealthiest people in Canada.
Until 2012, Balsillie was a member of the United Nations Panel on Global Sustainability. In 2013, he was appointed as Chair of Sustainable Development Technologies Canada by the Government of Canada. This self-made millionaire has in the past shown interest in buying the Pittsburgh Penguins of the NHL, as well as the Phoenix Coyotes. However, his respective bids to buy the franchises were denied.
Balsillie is also a renowned philanthropist who has contributed handsomely to various national and local initiatives. He has contributed both his time and resources to organizations such as The Canadian Olympic Foundation, Grand River Hospital and Waterloo Children’s Museum among others. He has also made many donations across Canada and abroad anonymously. He currently resides in Guelph, Ontario, Canada.
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