Heather Reisman is the founder and CEO of Indigo Books & Music Inc., Canada’s largest book retailer.
Ms. Reisman was born in Montreal and educated at McGill University. For the first 16 years of her career she was Managing Director of Paradigm Consulting, the strategy and change management firm she co-founded in 1979. Paradigm was the world’s first strategic change consultancy and pioneered many organizational change strategies still in use today.
In 1992, Ms. Reisman left Paradigm to become President of Cott Corporation. During her tenure as President, Cott grew from a Canadian-based regional bottler to the world’s largest retailer-branded beverage supplier. Harvard wrote two case studies focusing on the company’s growth and development under her leadership.
In 1996, Ms. Reisman launched Indigo Books & Music Inc. Conceived as the booklovers’ cultural department store, bringing Indigo to life was the culmination and integration of a life long passion for books and music, and an entire career focused on understanding and building advanced organizations.
Ms. Reisman is a former Governor of McGill University and of the Toronto Stock Exchange. She has served on many North American boards including Magna International, Suncor, and Rogers Communications Inc., and currently serves on the board of Onex Corporation and Right to Play. She is also a Director and Officer of Mount Sinai Hospital, and a member of the Bilderberg Steering Committee, a geo-political think group.
She is the recipient of several awards including Waterloo Entrepreneur Hall of Fame, University of Waterloo; International Distinguished Entrepreneur Award, University of Manitoba; and the John Molson School of Business Award of Distinction, Concordia University. In June 2006 she was the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of Commerce Degree from Ryerson University. Ms. Reisman is the author of numerous articles, and is a frequent public speaker and television guest. Her goal is to build the Indigo/Chapters organization into the most valued retailer in the world for booklovers and their friends. Ms. Reisman is married to Gerald Schwartz, Chair and CEO of Onex Corporation. She has four children and seven grandchildren.