Skip to main content
Science › Biomedical Physiology + Kinesiology
College and Association of Respiratory Therapists of Alberta
Executive Director
SFU BPK Alumni
Position Title

Bryan Buell has practised for 37 years as a registered respiratory therapist and is currently the Executive Director for the College and Association of Respiratory Therapists of Alberta where he executes the duties of Registrar, Complaints Director and Privacy Officer. The college and association is a regulatory body executing delegated provincial government authority to regulate the profession of Respiratory Therapy in the Province of Alberta.

Bryan is a life-long learner and has completed a certificate in health and fitness studies, a bachelor degree in general studies at Simon Fraser University, a diploma in acute healthcare administration from the University of Saskatchewan and recently completed the governance as leadership, strategic frameworks, leadership and organizing action and not for profit financial management courses from Harvard College in Cambridge Massachusetts.

He is proud to have been recipient of the following awards:

  • 2002 Premier’s Award from the Alberta Government for designing a Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Medical Diagnostic Sonography Education programs for Alberta;
  • 1996 International Teaching Award from the National Institute of Staff and Organizational Development at the University of Texas Austin;
  • 1993 Outstanding Service Award from the Alberta Society of Respiratory Therapists;
  • In his practice of respiratory therapy he has worked in a wide variety of clinical practice settings in hospitals, homecare, as well as the classroom, laboratory and simulation learning environments at Foothills Hospital, Southern Alberta Institute of Technology and University of Calgary Medical School.

He is passionate about providing service to people and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms as they relate to respiratory therapy regulatory affairs in Alberta.


Why did you choose to go to SFU?

I chose SFU because of its quality educational programming

Where did you spend the most amount of time on campus? 

I spent the most of my time in the WAC Bennett Library studying between classes. The work ethic and studying continued throughout my entire career to date

What is your favourite memory from your time at SFU?

My favourite memory of attending Simon Fraser University was watching the performances of Pied Pumpkin String Ensemble at the UCB (that was what the pub was called then)

Who was your favourite SFU professor and why?

English professor Stanley Cooperman inspired this science student. He motivated me to be the best I could be in whatever I selected to do as he considered being mediocre a tragedy

How has your SFU degree impacted your career?

I acquired a Health and Fitness Certificate from the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies and then a Bachelor Degree in General Studies. The degree impacted my career as a registered respiratory therapist in a variety of ways such as learning the significance of acid base balance to make life-saving decisions on mechanically ventilated patients in critical care practice settings as well as high risk patient transport. My microbiology education helped me create online education and learning tools to help health care professionals respond to sudden acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and the H1N1 pandemic response planning and surge surveillance. Some of my degree involved distance education learning and I was able to better understand this approach as a teaching and learning strategy. This helped me create an online education platform for Respiratory Therapists who are planning on re-entering professional practice and integrate the information for students who were unsuccessful in passing their registration examination.

What is your favourite SFU snow story? 

My favourite snow story involves safely making it up the hill just to discover many classes were cancelled. It was an adventure that taught me the important skills of adapting and responding based on commitment.

If you could give advice to students today, what would you tell them?

Lifelong learning is critical to career success. Adapt and respond to all situations you are confronted with while refraining from reacting. Thoughtless reaction often makes the issue larger or worse and you are less likely to achieve a desirable outcome.

What is the one thing about SFU that must not change? 

Faculty and student commitment to social justice! It is the DNA of the school that made me successful throughout my entire career and I am glad I went to school at SFU rather than some other universities.

This post was originally posted to the SFU BPK Alumni Page.