Blair Turnquist, CPA, CA
Accelerating your Career with a Growing Local Businesses
April 21, 2021
You do not necessarily need to own your own business to be entrepreneurial. Many CPAs work in start-ups and rapidly growing, entrepreneurial companies, helping to guide strategy, manage growth, and ensure long-term success. Blair Turnquist, CPA, CA landed a job with Crossmount Group of Companies and has helped sustain its growth.
“I always viewed the CPA designation as a way to get my foot in the door and separate myself from the crowd. I knew I wanted to be involved in the management of a growing business, and the CPA designation felt like the best way to achieve that goal.”
Blair Turnquist, CPA, CA is the Chief Financial Officer of the Crossmount Group of Companies (Crossmount), which owns a diverse set of businesses in the senior living, health care, hospitality, events, tourism, and food and beverage sectors. You may have tried Flatlander cider, a product of Crossmount Cider Co., or attended a wedding at Saskatoon's premier event venue, The Glen at Crossmount.
Good with numbers, Blair jokes that he had no choice but to become a CPA since it runs in his family. However, he always had an entrepreneurial mindset, even starting a landscaping business with his brother in high school. It became his goal to work for a growing, entrepreneurial company like Crossmount. Blair earned his designation in 2015.
When Blair was hired to manage the accounting department at Crossmount, he needed to know how to run the department, set up systems, and design procedures for new businesses. However, his previous accounting experience was primarily focused on taxation, so he engaged in continuing professional development to build up his accounting systems and technologies knowledge. This commitment to learning allowed him to provide value-added advice and led to a promotion to CFO in less than two years.
“Every single day is different; some days I’m crunching numbers, some days I'm onsite directing activities, and other days I am offsite working with our external team. The fact that every day has a new set of challenges is very exciting as it gives the opportunity to learn, grow, and strive to get 1% better every day.”
When not working, Blair spends his time competing in and coaching martial arts, a passion of his since a young age. Blair has a lifelong student mentality and loves sharing his martial arts knowledge and learning from others.
“CPAs are more than just auditors and tax experts as they are trained to be business advisors. Rather than looking at a problem or opportunity through a single lens, CPAs can tackle issues and opportunities by thoroughly analyzing them using a multi-faceted approach and integrating disciplines to reach a calculated result. It is this approach that has helped me succeed both in martial arts and business. Whether I am preparing for an upcoming match or planning a Cidery expansion, the CPA designation has given me the tools to succeed.”