Management

Corporate Head Office

Mr. Toby Chu is the founder, President, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Global Education Communities Corp. (“GEC Corp.”), formerly known as “CIBT,” headquartered in Vancouver, Canada. Mr. Chu founded GEC Corp. in 1994 and has since developed the company into an international corporation with 41 business locations in Canada and abroad.

In 1994, Mr. Chu implemented GEC’s expansion plan by establishing the CIBT School of Business & Technology Corp in 1994, and changed its name to GEC Corp in 2023. GEC Corp. operates a chain of campuses, teaching centres, joint program locations and recruitment offices globally, offering business management, e-commerce, cyber-security, information technology, health care, vocational trade, English as a second language, and travel tourism programs.

To realize his vision of global education, Mr. Chu acquired Sprott Shaw College in 2007, one of Canada’s largest private career colleges, established in 1903. Sprott Shaw operates 16 campuses in British Columbia. Sprott Shaw became the core infrastructure, academic resource and content provider for GEC Corp.’s future expansions. By 2020, Sprott Shaw College transformed from a predominantly domestic college into a diversified student mix.

In 2010, Mr. Chu structured the acquisition of King George International College (“KGIC”) for 4.3 million dollars. KGIC is one of the largest English language training schools in Canada. KGIC became the Group’s rudimentary English training provider, global recruitment channel and international pipeline for GEC Corp’s network of career and language colleges. After three years of reorganization, Mr. Chu sold KGIC for 13.5 million dollars. In 2017, Mr. Chu re-acquired all the assets of KGIC for the second time in 5 years for 3.1 million dollars and transformed its brand into Sprott Shaw Language College. By 2021, GEC Corp’s education platform services over 10,000 students from over 71 countries annually.

In 2014, Mr. Chu initiated the student-housing division of the company called Global Education City (“GEC”) by acquiring a hotel, several serviced apartments and development properties to construct North America’s first Education Super Center and Education Mega Center. Utilizing the pipeline of domestic and international students owned by GEC Corp’s education platform and a network of seventy-two school partners in Metro Vancouver, GEC’s student housing business grew exponentially in a few short years. Total real estate portfolio, including development budget, grew to $1.3 billion with 9 projects, 14 properties in Metro Vancouver.

Mr. Chu is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards. In 1993, Mr. Chu was named one of the “Top 40 Business People under the Age of 40.” In 1994, Mr. Chu became one of the top 30 finalists among 300 nominees across Canada for the Entrepreneur of the Year Award. In 2015, Mr. Chu earned the Entrepreneur of the Year Award from the Association of Chinese Canadian Entrepreneurs.

Under Mr. Chu’s management, GEC Corp. earned the following recognitions during the past twenty-nine years:

  • Top 400 Fastest-Growing Companies in Canada in 2020, by Globe and Mail’s Report on Business Magazine
  • Top 500 America’s Fastest-Growing Companies 2020, ranked by the Financial Times, London
  • Top 100 Fastest-Growing Companies in Canada in 1993, 2003, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, ranked by the Profit Magazine
  • Top 100 Fastest-Growing Companies in BC from 2015 to 2020, by Business in Vancouver newspaper
  • Top 100 Public Companies in British Columbia from 2008 to 2020, by Business in Vancouver newspaper
  • Succeeding Profiles of Chinese Canadian Entrepreneurs by the Asia Pacific Foundation
  • Top 2 Best International Prep Colleges in China by sohu.com in 2009
  • Top 5 Sino-Foreign Colleges in China by edu.qq.com in 2009
  • Top 10 Most Influential Sino-Foreign MBA Programs in China by China’s Executive Weekly Magazine in 2004 and 2007
  • Top 5 TSX-Venture Listed Companies by the TSX-Venture Exchange in 2008
  • Top 500 Largest Publicly Traded Companies across Canada by Report on Business magazine
  • Ranked in 8th position on the OCTQX 2018 Best 50 Top Performing companies

Mr. Dennis Huang graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Zhongshan University, Guangzhou, China, in 1982. He furthered his study at Jinan University, Guangzhou, China and received his Master of Economics degree (Management Direction) in 1988, and ultimately a Doctorate in Economics in 1998. Mr. Huang also obtained the designation of Financial Management Advisor (FMA) in Canada, completed the Canadian Securities Courses, qualified as Officer and Director (OD), Compliance Officer (CO), Alternate Designated Person (ADP), Alternate Registered Options Principal (AROP) and Investment Adviser (IA) in the securities broker-dealer industry.

In addition to his extensive education in the financial services sector, Mr. Huang established an impressive track record in his professional career. Before immigrating to Canada, Mr. Huang served as the CEO of Shenzhen Newsnet Co. in Shenzhen, China, which he developed into one of the largest and most profitable internet service providers in Southern China.

In 1997, Mr. Huang followed his success with Shenzhen Newsnet by co-founding and serving as Senior Vice President of Prosperity Network, an online financial services provider that developed the first online stock trading and fund transferring system in China. Prosperity Network also designed and developed stock2000.com.cn, one of the top ten Chinese financial web sites with over one million registered users.

Following Prosperity Network, Mr. Huang joined Guangdong Securities Co., Guangzhou, China, in 2000 as its general manager of E-Business, where he helped to double the customer base of online trading from 25,000 to over 50,000.

In 2003, Mr. Huang served as Chief Information Officer at ChinaEagle Network Co. Ltd, a subsidiary of ChinaEagle Securities, one of the top securities and investment firms headquartered in Shenzhen, China. Mr. Huang was responsible for developing the management information system, financial reporting structure, business analysis and corporate strategy. After he immigrated to Canada, Mr. Huang obtained the training of investment and financial service at Edward Jones Canada. Also, he served as President of Stoxtrade Investments Inc., in Canada before joining GEC Corp. as Chief Financial Officer.

In 2020, Mr. Huang was appointed Chief Accounting Officer overseeing the accounting functions of the entire group.

Mr. Paul Harman has over 7 years experience across the areas of financial reporting, internal audit and risk consulting.

He received his Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) and Diploma of Language from the University of Adelaide before starting his career working in public practice accounting. Before his position with GEC Corp., he spent 6 years in Australia and Canada working with clients operating across a broad range of industries including; mining, viticulture, retail, manufacturing, financial institutions, investment funds and investment managers.

During this time he narrowed his focus to financial institutions, private equity, and other illiquid investment asset classes including real estate, after developing an interest in their associated financial reporting complexities and operations.

Adam earned his Master of Arts from SFU Segal School of Business, majoring in financial risk management.  Adam has over ten years of commercial real estate experience at a major Real Estate Brokerage Firm as their Financial Analyst, Sales Associate and Associate Vice President.

During his career, Adam completed and advised on over $450 million in real estate asset transactions in Vancouver, and in several of those projects he played a key role from construction to completion.

Education Services

Mr. Tesan is an operational and strategic leader with over 25 years of experience in private education.  Mr. Tesan worked with Sprott Shaw College from 1994-2007 before returning in 2017 as President for the College.

Mr. Tesan was President of Campus Support, which operated colleges across Canada before rejoining Sprott Shaw College.  In addition, he has held leadership roles in numerous other groups and associations.  He was President of Sprott Shaw International Language College, a Board member of the National Association of Career Colleges and two-time President of the British Columbia Career College Association. Mr. Tesan is also actively involved in his community, having served on many local Boards in addition to his volunteer work.

A graduate of both the public and private educational system in British Columbia, Mr. Tesan has a proven history of building successful and sustainable organizations where corporate culture and values are at the forefront.

Dr. James has worked in both publicly and privately funded postsecondary Institutions in the UK, Australasia, and North America. Dr. James, a published author, was the founding partner of an award-winning consultancy with clients as diverse as the Olympic Games and the United Nations.

In addition to guest lecturing in Australia, New York and San Francisco,  Dr. James also worked in London, UK, for several years for the faculty of Health, Wellbeing and Social Care, and then as part of the leadership team tasked with a restructure for the Open University- a school with over 4,000 staff and 250,000 students. Dr. James’ postgraduate credentials include a Masters of Business Degree from Macquarie University, and a Doctorate in Education from the University of Western Ontario. With a strong interest in healthcare education, Dr. James is currently completing a Masters in Bioethics at Oxford.

Mr. Sohn has been an education management executive for the past 20 years, with an extensive track record in the international education sector.

Mr. Sohn joined GEC Corp. in 2010, upon acquisition of KGIC ESL school by GEC Corp., and was instrumental in driving the growth of ESL division to reach $24M annual revenue with over 8,000 student enrollment by 2013.  Mr. Sohn also spearheaded the acquisitions and restructuring of Vancouver International College ESL school in 2016 and 4 brands of ESL schools in 2017, which were rebranded to Sprott Shaw Language College.

From 2003 to 2010, Mr. Sohn was one of the core management which accomplished the expansion of King George International College from 2 to 6 campuses with an annual enrollment of over 6,000 students, reaching $18M annual revenue, by recruiting international students from over 25 countries through the broad network of over 800 agencies and education partners worldwide.

Before joining KGIC, Mr. Sohn was a Director of Business Development at Canadian Education Bridge Inc., for four years.  He was responsible for the development and coordination of ESL and IT program delivery designed for overseas university student groups studying at University of Washington in Seattle and UBC Continuing Studies in Vancouver.

In 1985, Mr. Sohn received a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Alberta, Canada and an MBA degree from the Graduate School of International Studies at Yonsei University, Korea, in 1991.

Real Estate Services

Brendan Lee is a driven and well-qualified business development, corporate entrepreneurship and sales executive with broad experience in Post Secondary Education. Brendan has been with Global Education Communities Corp. for over 16 years of direct experience planning, leading and executing growth strategies and leading diverse sales teams.

His role at GEC is responsible for setting revenue targets and marketing goals. His duties include developing B2B, forecasting sales strategies and overseeing student, market and commercial leasing.

Luffy Ding has nearly a decade of diverse experience in student recruitment, consulting, and housing services in the education sector. He graduated from the Dublin Business School with a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and later earned a Post-Graduate Certificate in Financial Planning from Centennial College.

Before joining GEC, Luffy gained extensive knowledge and experience in the Canadian education industry. He was a recruiting and marketing manager for an emerging private school, successfully recruited hundreds of students through innovative marketing and social media strategies. Luffy also played a crucial role in establishing the international market for a language school in Toronto.

Luffy’s expertise lies in strategic marketing, understanding Canadian educational environments, and delivering services tailored to students’ needs.

Mr. Paul Williams has significant experience in complex real estate. He has specialized in gaining development approvals for complicated development entitlements.

Mr. Williams has more than 25 years of commercial real estate experience and served as the Vice President of a premier Canadian real estate development company involved in dozens of high-rise developments.  He was a former board member of the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre, where he oversaw their $100M expansion. Mr. Williams is currently an advisor to the City of Vancouver’s Advisory Committee on Green Building Strategy.  He is past Chair of BC Children’s Hospital Foundation.

Mr. Donald Yen Architect AIBC, is the Principal of Urban Solutions Architecture Ltd. (USAL), located in Vancouver, BC. Mr. Yen founded USAL in 1997 and has since focused the firm’s practice in the areas of; land-use planning & municipal approval processes, architectural & urban design, and in building & facility planning, all with the focus of delivering the technical design and construction quality standards expected on significant projects.

His firm, USAL, works with both private sector clients and public sector clients and has developed unique expertise with student-focused projects in urban settings. Donald is highly-skilled and experienced with complex municipal and community stakeholder approvals processes, and is experienced in balancing the user group needs, with the client’s perspectives, along with technical and budgetary considerations, while advancing the project forward in an expeditious professional manner.

Mr. Yen is fully experienced with codes, construction contracts, technical standards, material specifications, and best practices in construction and is well known in the industry. His professional experience is augmented by his former faculty and leadership roles at the BC Institute of Technology, where he led Programs in Sustainable Urban Development (SUD), Building Technology (ABET), and Architectural CAD & Graphics (ASCT).  Mr. Yen also developed and taught courses such as Construction Contracts, Construction Management, BC Building Codes, and Construction Materials & Assembly, amongst others. On behalf of BCIT, Mr. Yen was responsible for establishing joint research in sustainable building technologies and graduate-level programs with UBC, SFU, and ECUAD. He was BCIT’s Campus-planning representative for the Great Northern Way Campus.

With his unique blend of experience and as a Principal Architect of Urban Solutions Architecture Ltd., Donald Yen Architect AIBC, has developed extensive “hands-on” experience in management and design.  These unique experiences allow Mr. Yen and his firm to excel with particular proficiency at identifying mandates, critical evaluation/analysis of criteria, utilization of creative problem solving, management of resources/skills, and management/utilization of human resources, resulting in achieving the overall objectives, with timely & professional results.

Specifically, for GEC, Donald and his firm has developed an intimate understanding of the functional programming, spatial requirements, and overall requirements of the metrics required for GEC’s Projects, and has developed and applied them in creative applications with each unique GEC site and development project in the range of municipalities. USAL has been involved with all GEC Projects in either leadership roles, such as Architect/Prime Consultant, or in strategic advisory/support roles to communicate and articulate GEC’s needs; spatially, technically, and programmatically. Donald’s in-house USAL team consists of; Architectural (both design and technical), Landscape Architectural, and Interiors staff, where Donald and his team can focus and direct efforts on each GEC assignment.

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