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Chris Gheysens

'93 VSB

Chief Executive Officer and President, Wawa

Favorite class at VSB and why?

Cost Accounting! I still refer to VSB’s Cost Accounting class as the most challenging and rewarding of my entire college experience. It showed me that accounting was more than debits and credits, and that it could be applied to understand, analyze and make better business decisions. This experience had much to do with my desire to be involved with retail industry clients at Deloitte and with starting my career at Wawa in retail (and cost) accounting.

Most important thing you learned?

VSB taught me that I was my own person with my own perspective. It provided me the tools that allowed me to shape original thoughts and to be creative in doing so by understanding a complex system, set of facts or story. Analysis, accounting and psychology all came together to help provide me the ability to be creative.

Favorite Villanova memory?

So many great memories and lasting friendships were made at Villanova; it is hard to choose just one. From interacting with caring, talented professors, to making life-long friends, to all the experiences of living away from home and off-campus for the first time, Villanova will always have a special place in my heart, and hopefully one day my children’s too.

What are you currently reading?

The story of Chick-fil-A’s corporate culture and leadership in a book called Remarkable! by Dr. Randy Ross and David Salyers. I’ve had the opportunity to meet David a couple times and hear firsthand how such a large organization puts people first and has a culture that truly guides decision making. Culture is the secret sauce to business, and certainly Wawa’s, so I am always eager to learn about iconic corporate cultures.

Where to find Chris

Wawa