Peter H. Thomas - Citation

Peter Thomas recognizes the power of aligning priorities with values.  With considerable business acumen and a vibrant entrepreneurial spirit, Thomas transformed a successful development career into a fulfilling mission to educate and connect people to the power of values-based leadership.

Born in England, Thomas was raised in Canada by his mother who instilled in him an unshakable foundation of ethics and values. He went on to spend seven years with the Royal Canadian army, including a tour of duty in the Middle East and Gaza Strip in 1961. After leaving the army he founded Century 21 Real Estate Canada Ltd., the largest real estate network in the country. Under his leadership, the company was earning $9 billion in annual sales through 450 franchises when he sold it in 1987. Thomas carried on to found Samoth Capital Corporation, a North American real estate investment and management service company, in 1984 and served as chairman and CEO until 2001. Among his other ventures, he developed the Four Seasons Resort and Hotel in Scottsdale, Ariz. in 2000, through his U.S. real estate company Thomas Pride International.

It was that same year Thomas lost his only son, Todd Thomas. He shifted gears professionally, and focused his energy on projects that would celebrate his son’s life and helping others live a values-based life. In 2000, he founded the Todd Thomas Foundation to raise awareness around mental health issues and support the search for effective treatments.

In 2002, he founded LifePilot, a not-for-profit organization that provides workshops to empower and teach people to live their lives in alignment with their values. To date LifePilot has more than 5,000 graduates all over the world ranging from senior business executives and students, to families and prison inmates.

The vision kept growing, and in 2006 Thomas worked with Royal Roads University to create the Todd Thomas Institute for Values-Based Leadership on campus. The centre was established to provide research in the field of values-based leadership and has evolved to become the Institute for Values-Based Leadership in 2011.

For his outstanding commitment to values, ethics, entrepreneurship and quality of life, Royal Roads University is pleased to present Peter Thomas for the honorary degree, Doctor of Laws.