Peter Smailes

Vice-President, Finance & Operations

Peter Smailes is the Vice-President, Finance & Operations at the University of British Columbia. He is responsible for leading Comptroller, Financial Operations, Treasury, and Security & Risk Services and well as Building Operations, Energy & Water Services, and Infrastructure Development across our Vancouver and Okanagan campuses.

As part of his portfolio, Peter serves as a board member and oversees the university’s relationship with UBC Investment Management Trust which manages the university’s endowment and staff pension plan, and UBC Properties Trust which develops and manages real estate assets for the benefit of the university.

Peter was promoted to the position of Vice-President, Finance and Operations at UBC in July 2018. Prior to that he served as the UBC Treasurer for 10 years and Associate Treasurer for 7 years. In addition to his work with UBC, Peter has worked as a Treasury Consultant with a variety of universities, hospitals and not-for-profit clients.

Peter has a degree in Economics from Carleton University and is a CPA, CMA.

Updates from Peter

April 29, 2021

Update on our strategic plan

In November, I sent an update that highlighted our plan to begin a process of transformational change within the VPFO, following our strategic plan’s focus on renewal and optimization. As we start our new fiscal year, I want to share a brief update on our progress.

February 4, 2021

UBC Completes Initial Transitioning of Funds Through the Responsible Investing Strategy

As part of UBC’s commitment to a low-carbon, sustainable future and divesting the endowment, the university is pleased to share that $34M of endowment funds have been transitioned to fossil-fuel-free investments.

November 20, 2020

Our first step towards transformational change in the VPFO

We're working to build a holistic view of our portfolio to better understand how our individual team strengths can be used across the portfolio, while finding efficiencies and savings.

October 28, 2020

Building Equity, Diversity and Inclusion within the VPFO

A lot has happened in the world and our university to bring unconscious bias, systemic racism, and other related equity and inclusion conversations to the forefront. Our journey together into EDI is one I am looking forward to and ask you to embrace it with me. This will be one of the first opportunities we have to go forward as a one team, as we outlined in our strategic plan.

October 7, 2020

It’s one month to go-live for Workday, Planon and the Integrated Service Centre

Over the past two years, we have been accelerating towards a renewal of our key business systems. This week, we are only one month away from our November 2 go-live date and our continued collective engagement in training and other start-up preparations are critical for a smooth and successful implementation.