Nov. 1, 2015

History Alumni Spotlight: Jennifer (Muza) Stone, BA

History and International Relations (2003), Business Strategist, Municipal Government

Jennifer Stone (née Muza) is a Business Strategist with Law, Corporate Security, at the City of Calgary. She was born into the hospitality industry in Waterton Park, Alberta where she helped her family operate their two inns before completing her BAs in History and International Relations at the University of Calgary in 2003. She subsequently completed an M.Litt with first class honours in the History of Art and Connoisseurship from the University of Glasgow. While living in the UK with her husband, Jennifer became a bank manager at National Westminster Bank in Oxford and gained significant anti-fraud, international banking and human resource management experience. She  later joined Christie’s Auction House, London, as the Anti-Money Laundering New Client Registration Coordinator for the UK and Europe where she successfully designed and implemented the anti-money laundering program and procedures throughout Christie’s global and, from the UK, led the successful roll-out of the program to Christie’s salerooms in the US, France and Dubai. This role depended upon her ability to formulate and execute large-scale strategies and procedures which demanded consistent consideration of the international art market, and the prevention of the use of art in criminal or fraudulent activity. 

“My career thus far has been exciting and diverse with many opportunities to meet interesting people and work internationally. I was naturally drawn to history from a very young age and knew early on that I would focus my education on the study of European history. Not only did the University of Calgary History Department foster and progress my knowledge of the field, it also instilled in me a desire for life-long learning and continuous development. It was during my time as an undergraduate that I developed critical reasoning and analytical skills as well as the capacity for solving problems and thinking creatively. My history degree also challenged me to advance my interpersonal communication skills and foster an appreciation of the different factors that influence our society.

Much of a career in the private and public sectors requires formulating a strategy and securing the support of various teams who may not see company priorities as their priorities. My undergraduate degree in history has prepared me for these types of challenges. I am able to recognize the need to build a case for change or adaptation on a firm footing of available evidence; to articulate the value of corporate change based on that evidence; and to be ready to discuss and defend a position on why an activity should be undertaken and how it could be best implemented. A key attribute is also maintaining intellectual flexibility to consider new ideas as they arise. These are some of the primary skills a history undergraduate is required to establish and they are what I took from my undergraduate history degree with the University of Calgary.

My history undergrad also inspired me to become part of a bigger story; to serve the public and contribute to the success of a great Western Canadian city at the City of Calgary. The development of public institutions and metropolitan centers, and those who committed themselves to building and advancing them fascinated me as a history undergrad and that interest has become a driving force in my career ever since.”