Tell us about your company?
I am the Operations Manager of Ignite Labs. Ignite is Nova Scotia’s rural innovation hub where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and small businesses work together. By providing structure, mentorship, and opportunities for start-ups to operate, grow, and create, Ignite is encouraging everyone to explore entrepreneurship as a career path without restrictions. Ignite encourages the growth of entrepreneurship in Nova Scotia across industries, including technology sectors, oceans sectors, and tourism sectors. By engaging youth, communities, and businesses to find solutions for challenges being faced in the region, Ignite is creating a culture of entrepreneurship in rural Nova Scotia.
Why did you work at your company?
While working as the CEO of Acadia First Nation I worked regularly with Ignite Labs. I saw the need to assist Ignite in its growth and chose to make the move.
Tell us about your family!
My family is amazing. Truly. I have been fortunate to have three amazing kids. My Son Mitchell is in his first year as a resident Doctor in Edmonton. He is engaged to an amazing lady who is a Homeopathic Doctor. My daughter Allison graduated from Acadia University with a double major in Geology and Environmental Science. After flying around the country in Helicopters for a while she has settled for now in Fort MC Murray. Samantha is cut from her dad's cloth for sure. She is a joker. Full of life and always goofing around. All my kids love adventure and travel. They have been farther at 25 than their dad has in his past 57 years. I am remarried to an amazing women. She has two more amazing kids. All five are 25-28 years of age. Michele is my love, my best friend and my partner in crime.
What was the hardest thing about becoming a dad?
Being honest. I live by this motto. I was like this with my kids. Sometimes the hard cold facts are not what a child wants to hear. I am honest and supporting always. In their later years they come to me for advice, for the truth, for direction because the know I have their best interests at heart. Be Honest. Sometimes be tough but be consistent
Has being a dad impacted your career? How?
It makes me see the whole picture. I have empathy. I have been a dedicated dad throughout my life. I carry that forward with my job. I treat people with honesty and integrity. I feel the traits I work hard at passing onto my kids are the same traits I need to mimic in my entire life which includes work.
What's one thing you've learned from your children?
To remain true to my beliefs. Our family has been through a few challenges in the past ten years. My kids were there for me. They picked me up. They dusted me off and allowed me to heal. They were patient and honest with me. So the gave back to me what I worked so hard to instill in them.
How has being a dad made you a better or different leader?
If you are honest with yourself and work hard at being a dad, the work becomes easy. Stand Tall as a father. Make the right choices. Be honest and always take the high road. Again hone your skills as a father and your leadership will shine through every day.