A Heart that Bleeds Blue
PROVO, Utah – Sep 18, 2020 – If you ever see a white car with a Utah license plate that reads BRIGM, you are likely driving behind Lee Bowen, a BYU Marriott School of Accountancy (SOA) alumni and die-hard BYU Cougar fan from Herriman, UT. Bowen’s time at BYU not only strengthened a love of Cougar sports; his experiences in the SOA also sparked a lifelong desire to strive for excellence.
As the current chief financial officer of Young Living Essential Oils in Lehi, Utah, a company that pioneered the modern essential oils movement, Bowen appreciates that his job is fast paced and brings new challenges. “Young Living is moving so fast and furious that it gets me excited. I jump up out of bed knowing that I have a hundred things to get done, and I'll probably only get to five or six of them,” he says. "I love working for an organization that is never satisfied with the status quo.”
Bowen attributes his desire to go the extra mile to the standard of excellence at the BYU Marriott School of Business. “My classes and professors at BYU Marriott and the SOA encouraged me to leave my comfort zone. The junior core was competitive and challenging, and I learned how to work hard and keep up with everyone. That type of work ethic still motivates me today,” he says. “One of the things BYU Marriott instilled in me was having a standard of excellence.”
Bowen’s accounting professors reinforced this standard of excellence and emphasized the value of hard work. “I'm not the smartest or sharpest tool in the shed, but I won't be outworked,” Bowen says. “The accounting program ingrained that in me, and that determination stayed with me. Learning to work hard is one of the most valuable skills I developed from BYU Marriott.”
Prior to his current job, Bowen was the regional director of finance for the Latin American region of Hilti Inc., a multinational company based in Liechtenstein, a German-speaking microstate between Austria and Switzerland. His family was asked to move to Panama in 2010, where they fell in love with the Hispanic culture. “The people in Central America are personally invested in you and do everything they can to improve your life. They are an example to me of service and unconditional love,” he says.
In Panama, Bowen learned not only how to serve others but also how he could be blessed by service from others. “At BYU we are told that we ‘enter to learn and go forth to serve’, but I believe that, in addition, as we go forth, we are served,” he says. “At least that is what happened to me—the Latin American culture influenced me for the better, and I will forever be grateful.”
Although Bowen and his family loved Panama, they felt a pull to come home to Utah. “Trying to watch all the ‘Jimmermania’ over the internet in Central America was maddening at times,” he says. “BYU sports is a big part of our family, so attending Cougar sporting events in person again was one of the best parts of moving back to Utah.”
BYU continues to greatly influence Bowen’s life. “My family and I bleed blue,” he says. “My wife and I intentionally put a ‘y’ in the names of our four kids, as well as the name of our dog. My experiences at BYU helped shape who I am as a person and made me who I am today, and that’s why my love for BYU will always stay strong.”
Media Contact: Chad Little: (801) 422-1512
Writer: Sarah Calvert