Von Heyking recognized with merit award

Sonya von Heyking (CA, CIA, BMgt '03 Great Distinction) is one of 22 Alberta-based chartered accountants being honoured with a 2012 Merit Award from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Alberta (ICAA) for making significant contributions to charitable and community causes, as well as to the CA profession.

An internal auditor with the University of Lethbridge since May 2006, von Heyking is being awarded an Early Achievement Award, presented to CAs who, within the first 10 years since qualifying, have demonstrated excellence in professional, civic, charitable, community or other services. Von Heyking received her CA designation in 2006, and prior to joining the U of L, worked at KPMG in Lethbridge.

Reporting to the Audit Committee of the Board of Governors, von Heyking has worked on numerous projects that have helped to streamline processes or affect savings or efficiencies for the U of L, including H1N1 preparedness, supplier selection processes and analysis of various activities related to strategic priorities.

Sonya von Heyking
Internal auditor Sonya von Heyking is a 2012 Merit Award winner.

"We are extremely proud of Sonya's achievement," says Bob Turner, the U of L Board of Governors Chair. "Sonya is a valuable member of our administrative team, and has an excellent working relationship with the University community. In her position, she looks at many different aspects of our business and financial environment, and has a varied skill set that enables her to advise the Board and our senior administrative group with a high level of confidence. This recognition by the ICAA affirms what we already know, and appreciate, about her service to the U of L."

Von Heyking has also earned her CIA (Certified Internal Auditor) designation, making her one of the few CAs in the province with that distinction. As well, she presents at numerous conferences, recently earning a trip to the Institute of Internal Auditors 'All Stars' international conference – an opportunity based on positive feedback from colleagues, audiences and conference organizers.

Among other projects, von Heyking designed assurance engagements that allowed U of L students to conduct actual audit work under her guidance, and present their reports to the University's Audit Committee. This project was extremely successful and benefitted both the students and Internal Audit.

As an Institute of Chartered Accountants of Alberta Centennial Ambassador, von Heyking also volunteered extensively in 2010 to establish a long-term fund supporting academic awards in local high schools. Through contributions by Lethbridge and area chartered accountants, the project ultimately raised sufficient funds to provide 60 annual awards to local high school students.

"The ICAA is, once again, honouring a tremendous class of Merit Award recipients," says Blair Nixon (Q.C. FCA), president of the ICAA. "Each of this year's recipients, including Ms. von Heyking, have left a positive impression on those around them. Throughout the profession's history, CAs have been known for making a difference in Alberta's communities – and within the profession. As always, this year's recipients live up to that reputation."

In total, 22 Alberta recipients will be officially recognized at the 2012 Merit Awards Gala, which takes place June 22 at the Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton.

This story first appeared in the March 2012 issue of the Legend. For a look at the full issue in a flipbook format, follow this link.