|Canadian Achiever: A. J. Casson|
Title: Dean of Canadian Painters
At 92 years of age, (born May 17, 1898) it would be quite justifiable if our Toronto born "Dean of Canadian Painters" -A. J. Casson just sat back and revelled in his past accomplishments. A master of oils and water colours, his paintings hang in galleries and private collections the world over. Canada has honoured him with every . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Al Howie
Title: He Set a World Running Record
In 1971, Al Howie decided to quit smoking and improve his health. He was 30 years old and really out of shape. Al started jogging. Never one to do things half way he was soon entering and winning marathon races, including setting the North American record for the 24 hour race in July 1981 at Ottawa. But it . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Albert Cohen
Title: You're Bound To Succeed
While interviewing Albert Cohen, founder of General Distributing, Winnipeg, the company that introduced ball point pens and Sony to Canada, I asked him the usual... "what advice do you have for other Canadians wishing to achieve in business?" "It's simple," he said and pulled out a ball point pen (what else). Then he drew a triangle on the . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Alex Baumann
Title: The Flag is Tatooed Over His Heart
By the time he retired from world-class swimming, Alex Baumann had won two Olympic gold medals, set many world records, had taken home numerous trophies and honours, including Athlete of the Year and the Order of Canada.... And Alex Baumann was only 23 years old!
Before becoming a fulltime coach, Alex took time out to collaborate . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Alex Trebek
Title: King of the Quiz Shows
Every evening over 15 million North Americans tune in to watch Alex Trebek lead them through another round of "Jeopardy”.
Born in Sudbury, July 22, 1940, Alex's father was a hotel chef, his mother a homemaker. He was packed off to a devoutly Catholic prep school where he admits he engaged in more pranks than study. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Allan Laakkonen
Title: Third Time Successful
Allan Laakkonen is the tenacious school teacher/alderman in Thunder Bay who headed up the civic committee that wanted to bring the Nordic World Ski Championships to Thunder Bay. In 1985 they made their first bid in Vancouver, and lost. In 1988 they travelled to Istanbul to bid again, and lost. In May, 1990 they travelled to Montreaux, Switzerland-bid again, and . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Anne Murray
Title: Canada's Best
What can possibly be said that hasn't already been said about this wonderful person?
Today she's one of the top entertainers in the world, and a woman who represents the very best in popular music. However, life for Anne Murray wasn't always so good.
Her family sent her to a Catholic College, where she . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Art McNeil
Title: He'll Help You Achieve
This Canadian Achiever believes there is a five-year-old child in all of us who is crying to be let out. The trouble is, five-year-olds can be a pain sometimes if they aren't given their own way. And do you give your direction to a five-year-old child?
R. A. "Art" McNeil is founder and president of The . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Art Wallman
Title: No Such Thing as Handicapped
Art Wallman of radio station CKSW in Swift Current, Saskatchewan admits he is pretty blunt when asked what young people today should do to get ahead in a career or business endeavour:
"Getoffyour butt andget itdone! I dontfeel the worldowesmealiving andIdon'tfeel itowesanyoneelseoneeither. Ifyou have goals, you should go after them. You can reach them regardless of the circumstances."
Art Wallman . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Arthur Hailey
Title: Hotels & Airports Spell Success
Arthur Hailey is now one of the world's best selling authors. His eleven novels have sold more than 150 million copies in 35 countries and 30 languages. Eleven movies, including "Hotel", "Black-Out", "Wheels", and the "Airport" series, were made from his books. His latest novel "The Evening News" (1990) was an immediate blockbuster.
Hailey emigrated from . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Audrey MacLean
Title: She Worked Her Way to the Top
The TORONTO STAR is Canada's largest newspaper with a daily delivery of about 550,000 and a Saturday edition of 850,000 copies. It employs 2,600 not including delivery people.
TORSTAR'S gross revenue for 1989 was just under $1 billion. It's a big company and quite intimidating to a shy, 17-year-old girl from Yarmouth, Nova Scotia who started there as . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Barry Gunn
Title: He's Digging Up Gold
Spying on your competition is as old as the hills. You spy on them, they spy on you. A restauranteur in Lloydminster, Alberta has added a new twist on spying that is simple as suds. Yet works like a charm. 34 year old Barry Gunn owns 'Diggers Family Restaurant'. He employs 40 people. To find out what the competition is . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Bill Blakey
Title: An Underwater Entrepreneur
An intrapreneur is an employee working for a company. An entrepreneur is an employee risking personal capital. It's rare to meet someone who is accomplished at both at the same time. That was the case of 42 year old Toronto advertising executive and Northern Ontario resort owner/operator Bill Blakey.
As an advertising entrepreneur he worked at . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Bill Caldwell
Title: He Got Rid of the Splinters
Back in the 1950's, when Bill Caldwell was a 26 year old sales engineer for Monsanto in Montreal, the average Canadian bathroom had a wooden toilet seat. The careful user always watched out for splinters.
But Bill had plans to change all that. He watched the introduction of the plastic toilet seat in the United States, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Bill Pardy
Title: He Thinks Big!
If you've never heard of Pasadena, Newfoundland, well you have now. It was a farming community then a dormitory for Cornerbrook where Bill Pardy was born 42 years ago.
Thirteen years ago Bill was elected Mayor of Pasadena and was determined to put the town on the map. He discovered the concept of an "industrial incubator”, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Bill Smith & Gerry Smith
Title: They Produce a Lot of Jack
In the mid 1970's Bill Smith of Toronto and Gerry Smith of Brantford, started working at Seeburn Metal Products in Orillia, Ontario. They aren't related. At the time they didn't even know each other but, that's all changed.
By 1985 they owned the company. What do they produce? They produce new car jacks. In fact, they . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Bill Stanley
Title: He's Bringing Another New Industry to New Brunswick
There is a lovely area about an hour's drive from Saint John, New Brunswick that is called Interlake. This beautiful low-lying region is home to many creatures of the wild, particularly deer. Deer are everywhere. A lot of them in Bill Stanley's backyard. He's a deer farmer.
"Yes, there are a lot of deer out here." . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Bob Krueger
Title: Canada's Mobile Mechanic
People who work with 34 year old Bob Krueger will tell you he is the finest mechanic around. He can fix anything and everything.
Growing up in Saskatoon, his school chums were always asking him to fix their bicycles, which he did. As he and his friends grew older, they asked Bob to fix their cars. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Brian Costello
Title: Your Money and How to Keep It
As a young man growing up in Hamilton, Brian Costello had a choice of two career paths he could follow. He could have become a radio announcer which he wanted, or he could become a stock broker/money manager which he also wanted. He chose the path that led to the bank vault ... money management. That was 25 years ago. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Brian Tracy
Title: A High School Drop Out Who Achieved
Brian Tracy is known world-wide as a leading authority on the development of human potential and personal effectiveness. His peak performance seminars have been attended by over 600,000 people. His motivational tapes and video tapes are produced in five languages, sold around the world, and followed religiously by millions.
Brian Tracy's gross income in 1990 exceeded . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Bryan Adams
Title: He Sings Up a Storm
This is a story of a young songwriter who decided he'd like to be a rock star as well. Vancouver's Bryan Adams wasn't always a rock superstar.
He and his partner Jim Vallance wrote more than forty songs in a three year period ... most of them for Canadian rock groups. But Adams got tired of the anonymity . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Burney MacDougal
Title: He's the Center of Centreville
This is the story of a New Brunswick conglomerate that started and stayed in a small community.
In 1960 when Burney MacDougal opened his machine shop in Centreville, New Brunswick little did he ever imagine that his small shop with one employee would grow over the next 28 years into a conglomerate group of companies employing 75 people, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Candace Wilson
Title: You Can Do What Ever You Set Your Mind To
Candace Wilson is ooe of the 010st positive people you will ever meet. She believes you can achieve whatever goal you set for yourself. She's proved she's right.
Years ago, Candace was a wine taster in Europe. A career that gave her the opportunity to travel in style throughout Europe, while earning big money to boot. She had always been . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Charles Sirois
Title: Paging Mr. Success
Charles Sirois, born in the small Quebec town of Chicoutimi, always had a gift for mathematics. He studied economics and finance at Laval University in Quebec City. When he graduated, he had no money but a lot of ambition and he looked around for what he thought would be a promising business. Of all things, he landed on the idea . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Christina Gold
Title: The Avon Lady Who Became President
Christina Gold is president and chief executive officer of Avon Canada in Montreal. She heads a company with sales this year of 260 million dollars and a sales staff of 45 thousand representatives. When you consider that less than 3% of highest management positions in large Canadian corporations are held by women, Christina's appointment says a lot about . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Claudette Mackay-Lassonde
Title: She Shocked Male Chauvinists
In 1986 the engineering profession and male chauvinism in general, received a severe shock. A woman became President of the 50 thousand member Professional Engineers of Ontario.
For Claudette MacKay-Lassonde it completed a process that started more than 20 years earlier when she decided to become an engineer. In those days engineering was a "man's profession". . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Cliff Freisen, Harvey Freisen
Title: Flying High Again
Bearskin Airlines serves northern Ontario from their base in Thunder Bay. It's owned and operated by two brothers, Cliff and Harvey Freisen. They bought the Airline in 1978. It had 5 small planes and a staff of 40. By 1985 they had 20 planes and a staff of 130 and were virtually bankrupt. They had expanded too fast. Rather than . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Clifford Chadderton
Title: A Leader in Community Service
Every year the Royal Bank selects one Canadian whose outstanding achievements make an important contribution to human welfare and the common good. The recipient receives one hundred thousand dollars, and a gold medal. The 1988 recipient was a man who has dedicated his entire life to just these values. Clifford Chadderton, chief executive officer of the War Amputations . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Dan Wilton
Title: Canada's Future is Bright
When I first met 17 year old Dan Wilton of Winnipeg, it was hard to believe he's was only 17. Dan exudes confidence and maturity. The kind of person you want leading Canada into the next century, I met Dan through Junior Achievement, the excellent organization which gives young people the opportunity to expand their horizons. In 1989 Dan was . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: David Ainsworth
Title: Hire Good People
When you first meet David Ainsworth of 100 Mile House in British Columbia's cariboo country, it's difficult picturing him as head of a corporate conglomerate. Nevertheless, sales in 1990 of Ainsworth Lumber Co. Ltd. reached $100 million.
"When we started up our portable sawmill outside 100 Mile House in the 1950's, we had six people working . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: David Lauzon
Title: Quebec's Young Entrepreneur
Twenty-seven year old David Lauzon of Papineauville, Quebec near Ottawa, is truly a remarkable Achiever: the youngest of eight children, David lost a leg in a motorcycle accident when he was 17 years old. But he didn't let that deter him from becoming successful.
"My parents were very encouraging and that was a very important factor . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: David Young
Title: An Inspiration to Everyone
In doing research for the series, I'm always being charged up by the enthusiasm and positive attitude of the people I meet. But nothing moves me more than so called handicapped people who have overcome so very much. People like Karl Hilzinger, the legless skier in the silver suit. And this amazing man, David Young. A quadriplegic, felled . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Deborah Goodwin
Title: Beauty and Brains Means Business
The cosmetic industry in Canada is an enormous industry. It's in the billions of dollars and employs thousands of people. A large portion of the industry is cornered by beauty consultants who arrange private parties in friend's homes. There are over 5,000 such beauty consultants in Canada ... each can earn up to 200.00 per week working part . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Diane Dupuy
Title: Famous People Players
When Diane Dupuy was 6 years old her mom gave her a hand puppet for a birthday present. That was over 30 years ago. Today, Diane is probably the world's most acclaimed and imaginative puppeteer. She's even had a movie
made of her life ... by an American film company at that. Diane's troop knocks 'em dead everywhere . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Don Harron, Charlie Farqueson
Title: Canada's Top Comedy Duo
Don Harron has had many successful careers. As an actor, performing Shakespeare on Broadway and England for 12 years. As a writer, he's written among many other things, the "Libberet" for Anne of Green Gables Canada’s longest running stage musical. He's written books as Don Harron and as his fictitious character "Charlie Farqueson". Like most people in the creative field, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Don Stafford, Rita Stafford
Title: Couple Had the Beans for Success!
In 1977, Don Stafford reached a crisis in his life. He was 46 years old and had been an advertising salesman for 20 years in his hometown of Montreal. He wanted to do something different, something for himself. He looked around for an idea.
"I sat down with my wife Rita and we discussed what . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Dr. John Hopps
Title: His Invention Will Save Millions of Lives
I was sitting next to man on a plane when the subject of the pacemaker came up. I happened to mention that the heart pacemaker was invented by a Canadian. The man turned to me and said, quite brusquely: "the hell it was!" Seems he had had one installed in New York and he was sure an American . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Dr. Ken Williams
Title: Medical Director of 800 Hospitals
At age 18, Ken Williams was working as a logger and then a high rigger in the B.C. forests. It's a dangerous job now. Back then it was treacherous. He was a bright young guy. There was something different about him. Four of the other loggers in the camp noticed it, pooled their money and made a commitment . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Dr. Lois Wilson
Title: A Religious Feminist?
In 1980 Dr. Lois Wilson made history in Canada when she became the first woman to be elected as Moderator of the United Church of Canada.
"It was a wonderful feeling of accomplishment and something I really enjoyed doing."
Dr. Wilson had already earned her stripes after graduating from the University of Winnipeg and . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Dr. Roberta Bondar
Title: The Sky's Not Her Limit
Roberta Bondar's high school guidance counsellor in Sault Ste. Marie, told her to forget about science; she just didn't have what it takes. Many graduations later, Dr. Roberta Bondar is in intense training as Canada's first female astronaut. She is not only a distinguished and superlative scientist, but also a neurologist, pathologist and accomplished pilot.
Dr. Bondar was . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Dr. Ron Taylor
Title: He Has the Best of Both Worlds
Ron Taylor was headed for a career as an electrical engineer. He got short circuited in 1962 when he was drafted right out of the University of Toronto into baseball's major leagues as a pitcher. For the next ten years Ron had an enviable career including a World Series championship in 1969 with the New York Mets. In 1972 he . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Dr. Virginia Gudas
Title: The Lady with a Heart
Virginia Gudas knew from an early age growing up in Montreal that she was going to be a doctor. She didn't visualize that one day she would be the chief heart transplant surgeon at Vancouver General Hospital.
"The moment I knew I wanted to go into the field of transplantation began when Christian Barnard made medical . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Duane Young, Linda Young
Title: The Lac La Biche Conglomerate
Seventeen years ago Duane Young arrived in Lac La Biche, Alberta as a 26 year old linesman for the Alberta Telephone Company. He'd been with them for a few years and was earning good money but, Duane had an inner desire to someday own his own hotel.
The town's seedy York Hotel was for sale. So . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Ed Preston
Title: Music is His Life
In 1962, when I arrived at CHML, Hamilton, the station music director was a quiet, bright red-headed guy with the biggest most brilliant smile the world had ever seen. Twenty-nine years later, some of the red hair has lost its lustre, but the smile remains the same. And his career reflects the opportunity that one can develop in . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Edward Ratcliffe
Title: The Man of Stone
It takes nature half a billion years to make sandstone. Edward Ratcliffe does it in 14 hours through a process he invented.
His artificial sandstone is sand from the ground at Cambridge, Ontario put under enormous pressure and baked at tremendous heat, just the way nature does it. But, much much faster. It is stronger than . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Eileen Cole
Title: Kids Mean Business
Studies indicate that more women than men are setting up their own small businesses in Canada today. Lending institutions will tell you that women applying for start up loans come to them better prepared. Their pro forrnas are more realistic. Their business profit expectations are usually more realistic than men's. Women stand a better chance to succeed.
. . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Elizabeth Manley
Title: She Turned Silver Into Gold
When Ottawa's Elizabeth Manley gave her dazzling performance at the Calgary '88 Olympics the crowd stood and cheered for what seemed like hours.
Since winning the silver medal that night she's gone on to a career that has included. .. "all kinds of things. I'm now with Ice Capades travelling allover the country, I've had television . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Eric Davidson
Title: Blind Auto Mechanic
On December 6, 1917 a terrible explosion occurred in Halifax Harbour levelling many parts of the city. Two-year-old Eric Davidson was one of its casualties. He was blinded by flying glass.
As Eric grew up he attended the Halifax School For The Blind and developed a fascination for cars. He loved cars and he learned everything he could . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Family Businesses
Title: Help or Hindrance?
Broadcast August 28, 1990
There's an old saying about family businesses: "It's three generations from shirt sleeves to shirt sleeves." Meaning the first generation starts the company by rolling up their shirt sleeves to get the business off the ground. The second generation comes in wearing a suit and expands the company into a well-run, successful corporation. The . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Frank Ney
Title: The Bathtub Admiral of the World
You don't have to come from a big city to think big. Frank Ney, a successful real estate developer and former longtime Mayor of Nanaimo, B.C., proved just that in 1967. That's the year he came up with the wild idea of holding a bathtub race from Vancouver Island, across 35 miles of choppy Georgia Strait to Vancouver. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Fred Davis
Title: Mr. Nice
In 1985, I landed a contract with the Royal Bank to produce a daily network radio show called "Expo '86 update". I phoned Fred Davis and asked if he would like to host it. We had never met. But everything I had ever heard about him was good. His reputation in the industry is so clean it's embarrassing. Fred agreed . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Gary Bardon, Vicki Lynn Bardon
Title: From Cottage Industry to Franchise Chain
Gary & Vicki Lynn Bardon of Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia, created the very successful 'Suttles and Seawinds' retail and wholesale chain from a cottage industry that concentrated mainly on handmade quilts. When they expanded their line to include clothing, business really boomed. But they decided to sell even more; franchising was the answer.
Gary, a lawyer, realized that . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Genevieve Bujold
Title: A Canadian Gift To Hollywood
Several years ago Aline and I were vacationing in Acapulco, Mexico. Our travel agent had booked us into "Los Brisas", a lovely resort high in the hills offering a spectacular view of the harbour. Unknown to us was the fact that the annual Mexico Film Festival was on. Many International stars were staying at our resort.
. . . read more
Canadian Achiever: George Cohon
Title: Big Mac .. . Big Sales
When George Cohon came to Canada from Chicago in 1968 to run the fledgling Canadian operations of McDonald's, he immediately fell in love with the country. He became a Canadian citizen. He later was awarded The Order of Canada for his outstanding contributions to his newly adopted country.
Never one to do things in half measures, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Gerry Mahoney
Title: His Hillsides are Beautiful
Gerry Mahoney is a very interesting Canadian entrepreneur. It's hard to believe he's only 44 years of age. For 14 years he worked as a salesman for Bell Telephone. He lived in Burlington, Ontario and commuted daily to his Toronto office. One day he said, "Enough of this commuting and working for someone else. I'm going to develop . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Gordie Tapp
Title: His Corn Sells
When Gordie Tapp worked at radio station CHML in Hamilton, Ontario, the station manager Tommy Darling, gave him an important piece of advice: "Com Sells".
At that time, Gordie was doing a jazz show called "What's on Tapp?” He loved jazz.
Tommy Darling was putting together a program called "Main Street Jamboree" with a . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Gordon Bell
Title: Come Hell or High Water
"It's very important that you really stick with it because, there are lots of ups and downs. So you have to decide that you're going to stick with it come hell or high water."
That's the advice of Gordon Bell the man, who with his family, has built "The 3 Valley Gap Resort" near Revelstoke, B.C. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Gordon Lightfoot
Title: Internationally Famous Singer/Songwriter
Gordon Lightfoot's story is the story of a Toronto guitar player who became an international singing songwriting star.
Born in Orillia, Ontario, October 17, 1939, music has been part of Gordon Lightfoot's life almost from the start. At age 11 he was a singer in the church choir, at 13 he was winning music festivals that . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Greg Clark
Title: From Seat of His Pants to Company Head
It can be truly said that Greg Clark learned the farm implement business from the bottom up. He grew up on a farm near Bounty, Saskatchewan and as a youngster spent many hours sitting on the hard steel seats of tractors, hay rakes and other farm equipment. Little did he think as he rode them, that some day . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Hal Rogers
Title: The Founder of Kin
If the Rotary Club hadn't turned down Hal Roger's membership application back in 1919 because his father was a member and the club forbids two from the same profession, the Kinsmen Club might never have been started.
Hal had just come back from the First World War to his hometown of Hamilton, Ontario and he missed . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Harrison McCain, Wallace McCain
Title: Canada's Frozen Food Kings
Brothers Harrison and Wallace McCain of Florenceville, New Brunswick, are known as "Canada's Frozen Food Kings". But it was a difficult battle for the title.
When they started McCain Foods in 1956, offering their frozen french fries to Canadian food stores, many outlets weren't set up to handle much in the way of frozen products other . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Harry Steele
Title: He Got Started When He Quit
When Harry Steele grew up in the tiny Newfoundland outport of Musgrave Harbour, there were no roads, no electricity and the nearest rail connection 60 miles away was cut off six months of the year.
"If you went outside you had to do it by horse, dogteam or on foot. You weren't really part of the . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Harry Tamarin
Title: It's Not What You're Born With …
A good friend of mine in St. Catherines, Bill Watson, told me about a local St. Catherine's Achiever whose story deserved to be told on my program. Bill said this person was an inspiration and example to every Canadian. The more Bill told me about him the more I agreed. If anyone is a "Canadian Achiever" Harry Tamarin . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Harvey Webber
Title: He's 'Atlantic Canada Plus'
Harvey Webber is a Nova Scotia retailer whose plan to create jobs in Atlantic Canada (ACP) is working. The 76 year old native of Sydney, Nova Scotia, won't let age or economic downturn dampen his enthusiasm. He studied law at Dalhousie and upon graduation in 1936 he took over the family owned ladies wear store.
Harvey Webber is . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Howard Dill
Title: The Pumpkin King of the World
When Linus of the cartoon strip sneaks out into the garden each Hallowe'en to await the arrival of "The Great Pumpkin", Peanuts and Lucy are more than skeptical that such a creature exists. They jeer. Meanwhile, in Windsor, Nova Scotia, Howard Dill is up to his neck in the largest pumpkins in the world.
They don't . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Inge Clausen
Title: She Turned Tragedy Into a Crusade
On August 21, 1981, a devastating tragedy struck the Clausen family of Duncan, British Columbia. While jogging near her home on a sunny Sunday afternoon, their beautiful fifteen year old daughter Lise was attacked and murdered by a known sex offender released on mandatory supervision.
Lise's mother, Inge Clausen is a very strong willed determined person of Danish . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Issy Steen
Title: The Sunflower King
You never know when or where opportunity will strike next. Just ask Issy Steen, owner of "Sid's Sunflower Seeds" in Regina. His big break came when two strangers approached his display of sunflower seeds at a food show in New York. They said their kids enjoyed sunflower seeds and asked for a few sample packages. Issy gave them . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Jack Donald, Joan Donald
Title: They Work Together
Jack and Joan Donald, through Parkland Industries own 141 gas stations in three Provinces, and an oil refinery near Red Deer, Alberta. They are millionaires living on a ranch outside of Red Deer, where they could live the lives of the rich and famous. But, in fact there is nothing pretentious about them. They're as down-to-earth as you . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Jean Pare
Title: Her Cookbooks Cook Up Huge Sales
Anyone who looks in the cookbook section of a bookstore will wonder how so many cookbooks can sell. They may well say: what this country doesn't need is another cookbook! Nevertheless, Jean Pare of Vermilion, Alberta expects to sell a million or more in Canada every year.
"And that's a fairly conservative estimate. We now have . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Jim Deacove
Title: He Believed in Co-operative Family Games
A quiet country setting 12 miles from Perth, Ontario, is not exactly where you would expect to find the hub of a burgeoning toy and game empire, but by the same token, Jim Deacove never expected, or really wanted it to happen ... it just happened.
Back 20 years ago, Jim and Ruth's two young daughters, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Jim Lane
Title: The Sailor Who Now Owns the Fleet
In 1949 Jim Lane was 12 years old growing up in Vancouver. Jim was a big kid for his age and because of his size he got a summer job as a deck hand on a tug boat and quickly fell in love with the sea. At age 14 he quit school and went to sea full time. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Jim Scharf
Title: Thinking Positive Paid Off
I enjoy reminding my audience that in Canada you don't have to come from a big city to think big. The Jim Scharf story really drives that point home.
Jim and wife Bruna farm near Perdue, Saskatchewan. Jim's grandfather and father farmed the area, making Jim a third generation farmer.
Jim's mind is always . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Jimmy Pattison
Title: Believe It Or Not
Born in Luceland, Saskatchewan, raised in Vancouver, Jimmy Pattison is a legend in the financial world. A certified self-made billionaire. Everything he has now, he's earned.
In 1952 he started selling used cars. People who were in the business then say he was the best. In 1961 at age 32, he mortgaged his home to buy a General Motors dealership . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Jocelyne Doyle-Rodrigue
Title: Achieving in Both Official Languages
For the people of Montreal, bilingualism is not a goal, it's a fact of daily life. And that fact was not lost on Jocelyne Doyle-Rodrigue. At the University of Montreal she specialized in translation. After graduating she joined the Federal Translation Bureau in Ottawa and soon rose to a managerial position in the bureau. At the age of . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: John Brown
Title: Fine Furniture-Wooden You Know It?
In 1974 a young university student named John Brown decided to drop out of advanced education and look for something entirely different. He took a course in woodworking and there met a friend who shared his growing interest in making furniture.
The two refurbished some antiques, made some copies of classic Nova Scotia furniture and attracted . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: John Ferguson
Title: There'll Be No Tag Days For Him
His name is engraved on five Stanley Cups. He spearheaded a hockey dynasty in Montreal that lasted from 1963 to 1971. How did John Ferguson do it I asked?
"When you get right down to it, I made it my business to be an absolutely miserable S.O.B. on the ice all of the time."
. . . read more
Canadian Achiever: John Kim Bell
Title: Native Musical Genius
John Kim Bell, a Mohawk Indian, was born on the Kahnawake Reserve near Montreal 37 years ago but left with his mother when he was three years old. If he had stayed on the reserve, his great musical talent might never have been discovered.
"After the trouble on the reserve in 1990, I'm glad I left . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: John Volken
Title: He Didn't Know Times Were Tough
Somebody forgot to tell German immigrant John Volken that Canada was in recession in 1981 so he went right ahead and became a success. From his first small used furniture store in Vancouver, he turned "United Buy and Sell" into a huge financial success with thirty-eight stores in Canada and four in the United States. And he's still . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Judith Forst
Title: World Class Mezzo Soprano
Judith Forst's mother Euna always knew her daughter would be a success. She told me that from the time Judith was a little tot she was always singing and practicing piano. Euna is a very proud mother and she has every right to be because now her daughter, Judith Forst, is a world renowned mezzo soprano.
. . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Jules Dumouch, Liette Dumouchel
Title: They Made Their Dreams Come True
I enjoy telling stories of successful restauranteurs. Maybe it's because I travel a lot and spend so much time in restaurants. But also, it's because there is not another business that attracts so many small investors with big dreams. A perfect example is Jules Dumouchel. 27 years ago he quit his job as a meat salesman with Canada Packers to . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: K. C. Irving
Title: A Legend In His Lifetime
In 1989, I was invited by the Miramichi Regional Development people to help present their First Annual Miramichi Achievers Award to K. C. Irving. I travelled to Newcastle, New Brunswick wondering what it would be like to meet the man who had achieved so much in his lifetime. A man who had become almost larger than life. According . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Kaaydah Schatten
Title: She Does the Un-Do-Able!
The story of Kaaydah Schatten begins as an all too common Canadian tragedy. Born on an Indian Reserve at Campbell River, British Columbia, one of six children, parents alcoholic.
She moved to Nanaimo and became an honours high school graduate. At 18, just as things were going well, Kaaydah was badly injured in a car accident, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Karl Schutz
Title: The Little Town That Did
I mentioned in the foreword of this book that in 1979 I bought radio station CKAY in Duncan on Vancouver Island. We sold our home in Burlington, Ontario and moved West to enjoy life in this most beautiful part of Lotus Land. Duncan is adjacent to the town of Chemainus.
At that time Chemainus boasted a . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Ken Church
Title: He Can Do Anything
They say you can take the boy from the farm but you can't take the farm from the boy. As a person who was raised on a Prairie farm I know that statement is true. As further proof, I offer this story of Ken Church.
Ken was raised on a small farm near Ryerson, Saskatchewan. Like . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Ketty Alzetta, Mariano Alzetta
Title: Their Key to Success is Their People
"You must like people. We love our people. They are everything to us. Without them we are nothing."
That's what Ketty Alzetta said when I asked her what was the secret to their success and their excellent Montreal restaurant, "La Capannina". The people she refers to are their customers and staff.
Ketty emigrated . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Kevin Zubek
Title: It's in the Cards
I first told the Kevin Zubek's story on my radio program two years ago, (1989). At that time Kevin was a 16-year-old high school student from Mississauga, Ontario who was well on his way to becoming a successful entrepreneur in the Sports Card Collectible business.
He began as most collectors do, first he was a fan. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Kingsley Ward
Title: Letters of a Businessman
Kingsley Ward is a very successful independent business person, owner of eight companies primarily in the field of health care. His son and daughter have both followed his example and chosen careers in the family business.
Kingsley, a native son of Bathurst, New Brunswick, wanted to share his business knowledge with his children. Like most parents . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Len Cullen
Title: He Made His Business Grow
As a young teenager growing up in Toronto, Len Cullen cut the lawn and shovelled snow for a Mr. Weall who owned a small nursery. By age 17, Len was working full time there. At 22, he bought the business.
That was 44 years ago and there are now eight "Weall & Cullen Garden Centres" in . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Leon Malinowski
Title: A Farmer's Best Friend
Leon Malinowski never minded getting his hands dirty, or working twelve hours a day. Maybe that's why he's now Owner/President of "Leon-Ram Enterprises", a 15 million dollar a year operation that employs up to 150 people.
Thirty-eight years ago Leon was a journeyman welder repairing farm equipment in Bankend, Saskatchewan. In slow seasons he designed and . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Lorraine Johnson
Title: She Wants Future Generations to Live Here
Canada has a disgraceful record when it comes to damaging the environment: we use more energy per capita than any other country in the world. We produce more garbage than any other country studied. Canadians have the lowest recycling rate of any country studied. We consume the second highest amount of water, our output of sulphur dioxide (major . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Lynn Johnston
Title: For Better or For Worse
Every day comic strip readers around the world enjoy following the trials and tribulations of the Patterson family who live in Lynn Johnston's studio near North Bay, Ontario. You see, Lynn is the woman who created the immensely popular "For Better or For Worse" which appears in more than 700 newspapers worldwide. Selected the number three choice of . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Marc Garneau
Title: Canada's First Man in Space
Marc Garneau did not spend his childhood dreaming of travelling in space. In fact, as a boy growing up in Quebec City, the son of a distinguished general, Marc thought space flight would be out of the question for Canadians for a long time.
If Marc and his family had decided to take their vacation in July, 1983, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Margret Osbaldeston
Title: Proud of Our New Citizens
Where would Canada be without new citizens? Every year we welcome thousands to Canada. People who arrive and enrich our country. Most born Canadians take citizenship for granted. We shouldn't. Canadian citizenship is the most prized possession a person can have. Just ask citizenship court judge Margret Osbaldeston of Edmonton, "We can't really blame us born Canadians, we . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Marlene Buck
Title: She Bucked A Trend In The Automobile Industry
Marlene Buck is one of Canada's very few female car dealers. When her husband Dave died in 1986, Marlene stepped in as president of the dealership, Dave Buck Ford in Vancouver.
Winnipeg-born Marlene had never worked in the automotive business, and hadn't worked at all for ten years when she took over. But she was determined . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Max Meyer
Title: He Makes Christmas Live
Because he was born and raised in China, Max Meyer had never experienced the excitement of Santa Claus as a child.
His family returned to Germany where, as a young man, he joined the Merchant Navy. When his ship visited Vancouver he fell in love with Canada and wanted to live here. He applied to immigrate . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: May Marx
Title: Her Art Makes Big Marks
Today May Marx bronzes, prints, and paintings are collected all over the world. She's recognized as a talented Canadian with a master's touch for popular art. But it wasn't always like that ...
Like most struggling artists, she had to take in part time teaching jobs to pay for studio rentals and supplies. She chuckles that . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Mel Dancy
Title: He Enjoys Every Minute
I've known Mel Dancy as a friend for over fifteen years. He's a remarkable guy. Mel grew up in Hamilton, Ontario. He got his first construction job at age eleven when he bid on a sewer line project at a new home being built near his home. He worked all day with a pick and shovel like a . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Mel Hurtig
Title: He Makes Us Proud to be Canadian
Five years ago Edmonton publisher Mel Hurtig made Canadians sit up and take notice when he published the 3 volume set "The Canadian Encyclopedia". Mel established a record by selling 155,000 sets in 3 months.
Canadians snapped up the sets because finally we had an encyclopedia of our own. Well he's done it again. Only this time bigger and better. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Mel Steinke
Title: They Bought the Company
"There is tremendous opportunity in Canada. The kind of opportunity that presented itself to us is out there in business today. The first thing that a person must do is identify the opportunity. Keep your eyes open. Look for opportunity. When you see it, decide whether or not you as an individual can believe in it and can . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Mellanie Stephens
Title: Sewing Canvas at Kettle Creek
It took Mellanie Stephens a while to find herself. She dropped out of high school in St. Thomas, Ontario, before finishing grade 11 and drifted around for seven years. She finally returned home to Port Stanley, Ontario, and got a job sewing women's clothing for a local factory, but kept telling herself there must be a better way . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Michael J. Fox
Title: His 'Family Ties' are Canadian
In the final scene of the movie 'Back to the Future III', Dr. Brown, played by Christopher Lloyd, tells Marty McFly, played by Michael J. Fox,
"your future hasn't been written yet, no one's has. Your future is whatever you make it. So make it a good one." That scene may have been pure fiction, but the advice . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Mike Grenby
Title: He Earns You Money
Today Mike Grenby is one of Canada's most respected and successful financial planners. Back in the late 60's Mike was writing a regular financial column in the Vancouver Sun. He worked there for 25 years. Then he did what most people would like to do. He quit his job and struck out on his own.
Mike . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Mimi Kuzyk
Title: From Winnipeg to Hollywood
The people of Winnipeg think of her as one of the local kids who grew up dancing in a Ukrainian folk group. People who have watched the television show "Hill Street Blues" think of her as Detective Patsy Mayo. Mimi Kuzyk is both of these things, and more.
Mimi's fourteen years of dancing with the Winnipeg . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Morinville Rendezvous Seniors Club
Title: "You Seniors Have Sure Got It!"
The standard practice for building a community recreation hall or Senior Citizen's Centre is to call upon all the provincial government agencies possible to hand over the money, then hire a contractor to do the work. Not so with the seniors of Morinville, Alberta.
The seniors in this farming community near Edmonton wanted a recreation centre. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Nancy Green-Raine
Title: She Beat the Best
It would have been somewhat of a miracle if Nancy Greene had not been a skier. Her mother had been a ski racer and her father helped build one of the country's first chairlifts, near the family home in Rossland, B.C.
She got her first break in 1958 placing second in the Canadian Junior Championships, her . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Nathan Gold
Title: Retire? Me? Never!
I spoke to Nathan Gold over the phone and we agreed to meet the next morning in person.
"I’ll send my car around at 7 a.m." he said. "It's a silver four-door Mercedes, Dick. Do you think you will recognize it?"
I told him I didn't think there would be many cars fitting that . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Nick Genovese
Title: Blind Golf Champion
The baritone singing voice of Nick Genovese of Dundas, Ontario, became a familiar one to CBC radio listeners of the 1960's. He is still in demand as an entertainer on the club and banquet circuit. What the radio listeners didn't know, but what was obvious to live audiences, was that Nick is blind.
On Friday, March . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Norm Rolston
Title: Able Walker
Experts will tell you that in order to bring a product to market successfully you must plan, evaluate, research and strategize before you even begin. None of those principles can be applied to Norm Rolston, yet two years after launching his"Able Walker" invention from the back of his van, he has run up sales of over $5 million. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Norma Beer, Norm Beer
Title: Her Buttertarts are the Best
Norma and Norm Beer of Chilliwack, B.C., are a real Canadian success story. Norm owned his own company delivering to local food stores. Eight years ago Norm suggested to Norma that it would be a good idea to add buttertarts to his line of products. Norma was a wonderful cook but she had never baked buttertarts before. She . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Pat Corbett, Juanita Corbett
Title: Their Hill is a Healthy Success
Pat Corbett grew up in Swan River, Manitoba. After graduating from university he began to paint houses for a living. But it wasn't really what he wanted to do. When he married Juanita they decided to combine their two goals: Pat wanted to run a ski & dude ranch and Juanita wanted to operate a health resort. The . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Pat Thody
Title: They Wanted a Piece of the Action
"Well I guess the feeling was . .. we finally did it. We knew what we were getting into. We knew that we were going to have to scrape all of our money together and that it would be tough for us all. "
That's how Pat Thody described the feeling he and eleven other managers of Simmons, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Pat Wiley
Title: He's Revolutionizing Highway Resurfacing
Canada is truly a land of creative entrepreneurs. I guess it's because we are only 124 years young that we still have the explorer's sense about us, frontier mentality. Unlike most of the older countries our best and most inventive ideas are still coming from average Canadians in average sized towns and cities. Fortunately our creative curiosity hasn't yet been . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Paul Beeston
Title: Blue Jays Head Honcho
As far as Paul Beeston is concerned, every day is Saturday for him, meaning "take me out to the ball game." Paul is president and chief operating officer of the Toronto Blue Jays of the American Baseball League. Although he says he was extremely lucky to get the position, more than luck played a part in his rise . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Paul Burdette
Title: King of the Carvers
When he was a very successful construction superintendent for the Otis Elevator Company eleven years ago (1980), Paul Burdette suddenly chucked it all and went to work as a full-time carver of wildlife. Today he is rated one of the ten world Masters of the International Wildlife Carvers Guild. His works sell for up to $45,000 each and are displayed . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Paul Durish
Title: My First Achiever
Paul Durish is the first person featured in this book because Paul is the first Canadian Achiever I recall ever working with. Although at the time you would hardly call him an achiever. We first met in 1951 when we worked together on the S.S. Imperial Fredericton, an oil tanker hauling crude oil from Venezuela to Brazil, Argentina, and other . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Pauline Hill
Title: She Makes Everyone Feel Welcome
I first met this feisty lady while attending a Rotary meeting in Toronto as a guest of my good friend and fellow-broadcaster John Spragge. In place of the usual tired old 'welcoming committee' one meets at most service club meetings, I was surprised to be 'welcomed' by this dynamic little bit of a woman with a firm handshake, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Peter Legge
Title: Soar Like An Eagle
"I think you have to first of all come to grips with how gifted you mayor may not be. And are able to work within that framework.
"Secondly, my strongest advice would be, don't bite off more than you can chew. Try very hard not to go into debt. .. don't run too fast. Be more . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Peter Matiowsky
Title: Stopping Thieves the World Over
Peter Matiowsky was born and raised in the Seech District of Manitoba. He moved to Calgary and for the next 20 years did a variety of things including selling insurance, working in the oil fields and for 16 years worked as a glass man for "Custom Glass", a company specializing in home window renovations. That's where he soon picked up . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Pierre Ducros
Title: Knowledge is Power
51-year-old Pierre Ducros had an unusually disciplined education while growing up in Montreal. His French-born father sent young Pierre to the Military College in nearby Saint Jean and then he was off to Ontario's Royal Military College in Kingston. After a degree in engineering from Montreal's McGill University and a stint in the Canadian Navy, Ducros joined IBM in 1964 . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Rachel Zimmerman
Title: An Amazing Young Canadian Inventor
There is, in London, Ontario, an inventor named R. Zimmerman, who has won a silver medal at the Canada Wide Science Fair, money from I.B.M., a Canadian Citizenship Award, and plaudits from the Minister of State for Science and Technology. Are you picturing a silver haired old gentleman working with test tubes? Surprise!! The 'R' in .front of Zimmerman stands . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Ralph Robinson
Title: Persistence Paid Off
The broadcasting industry seems to attract the kind of person that falls into the risk taker-achiever category. High profile broadcasters such as Ted Rogers, Alan Waters, Harry Steele, Philippe de Gaspe Beaubien and a number of others come quickly to mind. There are many-called in the industry, mid-market broadcasters-who are among the country's top achievers. One in particular is Ralph . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Raymond Aaron
Title: Real Estate . It's The Real Thing
Buying a home can be the best investment you will ever make. Do it when you are young and it could become the cornerstone to your financial independence.
Thanks to a $3000 real estate investment Aline and I made in 1962 we were able to buy a radio station in 1979. Here's how it happened ... . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Raymond Cyr
Title: From an Orphanage to Canada's Largest Company
Can a young man or woman still work the long way to the top in a large corporation? It was fairly common years ago. What are the chances of an unknown taking a spot on the lowest rung and ending up running the whole show?
J. V. Raymond Cyr of Montreal did it. He was raised . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Raymond Waechter
Title: Sometimes It Pays to Quit
During the 1950's Raymond Waechter was working in Montreal as a salesman for a building supply dealer. He was being paid a good salary but he wanted a commission on his sales. His boss refused, so Raymond decided, after a lot of thought and deliberation, to start his own business.
Today, 'Boiseries Raymond' employs 150 people and has . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Red Robinson
Title: He's Bursting with Talent, Energy and Enthusiasm
As a teenager growing up in Vancouver during the 50's, Red Robinson had only one desire. He wanted to become a radio announcer, nothing else. He hung around radio stations begging station managers to give him a try. It worked... he finally convinced one to ... "Give the Kid a Break." He was
16. Listeners like his fresh . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Reveen
Title: His Performances are Hypnotizing
Since moving from Australia to Canada in 1962, the man they call Reveen has played in just about every city, town and hamlet in Canada, and around the world.
He astounded the entertainment world by first going to Calgary and selling out 28 consecutive performances at the Palace Theatre. Word quickly spread and Reveen was established. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Rita MacNeil
Title: Big Success From Big Pond
Canada is having a conspicuous love affair with 43-year-old singer composer Rita MacNeil from Big Pond, Cape Breton Island. This big, beautiful lady, who loves to belt out songs in her stocking feet, can't read a note of music, nor play an instrument, What she can do is compose songs from her life experiences and sing them with . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Ron Foxcroft
Title: Blowing The Lid Off
Mid way through my speaking engagements I surreptitiously place my hand over my mouth and jar the audience awake with a shrill ear piercing blast on my FOX40 whistle. What's a FOX40 whistle? I'll explain in a moment.
They say if you build a better mousetrap the world will beat a path to your door. Ron . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Ron Ridley, Fran Ridley
Title: They Believe in Themselves
When the business community of Williams Lake, B.C. honoured Ron Ridley as "Entrepreneur of the Year" they made an excellent choice. Ron and wife Fran, originally from Windsor, Ontario, moved to Williams Lake in 1976 to buy a car dealership which they have built into a wonderful story of achievement. By industry standards the dealership they bought was quite small. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Ross Cruickshank, Keith Barnwell
Title: Two Guys with a Red Hot Idea
Many great ideas have come from casual conversation. Here is a classic example...
It all came about when Ross Cruickshank, 36, and Keith Barnwell, 27, were sitting outside having a cold beer on a hot Ontario summer afternoon. The hot sun was too much for the styrofoam bottle holders they were using to keep their beer . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Russ Jackson
Title: He Won 3 Grey Cups
Whenever you think you're too busy, stop for a moment and think about Russ Jackson. For 12 years, in the 50's and 60's, Russ became famous as one of Canada's most outstanding professional athletes. Winning 3 Grey Cups, seven Schenley Awards (3 most outstanding, 4 top Canadian), and named twice as Canada's Male Athlete of the Year.
In . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Sam Sniderman
Title: Sam Sets Records Selling Records
In 1937 Sam Sniderman was working in his brother's radio store on Yonge St. in Toronto. (Back then they didn't have TV) He was 17, he suggested they open a record department and he should run it. That was the beginning of 'Sam the Record Man' ... a In 1937 Sam Sniderman was working in his brother's radio store on . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Sherry Rutech
Title: Like Hell We'll Sell!
When the head of the family business suddenly dies and you find yourself with a multi-million dollar business to run, what do you do? Run it yourself-or take everybody's advice and sell it?
Sherry Rutech, a 21-year-old University of Calgary student at the time, faced a dilemma. Her mother and sister wanted to sell. Sherry had . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Shirley Letto
Title: She Got Into Tourism By Mistake
Shirley Letto got into tourism by mistake and is now one of Newfoundland's hottest travel promoters. She wants to see how far she can go promoting tourism in Newfoundland and Labrador.
24 years ago she quietly rented out a few rooms in her Labrador home to fellow teachers. Tourists heard about the rooms and the next . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Stephen Hurst
Title: From Banker to Entrepreneur
Stephen Hurst is a young man in a hurry. He was a 'Bankers Brat' who travelled with his father and family from place to place, branch to branch. And the bank life influenced him.
"It gave me a sense of mobility and practicality that I don't think I would have gotten elsewhere."
At the . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Steve Bauer
Title: Fame On The World's Cycling Circuits
In 1964 Steve Bauer of Fenwick near St. Catharines, climbed on his first 2-wheel bicycle. He was 5. Twenty years later at the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984 Steve won for Canada the first silver medal in cycling in 76 years.
Steve turned pro after that and in his first race, the World Championship in Barcelona, . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Suzanne Hillier
Title: It's Never Too Late To Start Over
Suzanne Hillier, now of Brampton, Ontario but originally from St. John's, Newfoundland is one of the busiest family law specialists. And well might she be, tempered as she was by many a trial and tribulation.
Her original career was teaching. Then came the personal traumas that changed everything. First there was the death of a five . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Suzanne LeClair
Title: She Builds Truck Bodies
When Suzanne LeClair was a little girl growing up in Montreal she decided she would do something different one day. Something Quebec women didn't do. But that had to wait. She married Jacque, an accountant and spent ten years at home raising two sons, Mark and Louis.
Then she chose a new career as a manufacturer. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Ted Grant
Title: He Made His Dream Happen
When you hear what 40 year old Ted Grant is doing now, and you hear what his background was, you'll wonder how Ted's achieved what he has.
Ted grew up on a farm near Portage La Prairie, Manitoba, joined the RCMP and settled in for what should have been a long secure career. But Ted risked . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: The Hon . Joey Smallwood
Title: A Father of Confederation
Joseph Robert (Joey) Smallwood didn't start out to be a Father of Confederation, in fact the thought probably never occurred to young Joey Smallwood. He had dropped out of school at age 15, but picked up an education working as a reporter for newspapers in St. John's, Halifax, Boston and New York. He may be the only Canadian Premier ever . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: The Hon. Lincoln Alexander
Title: He Overcame Oppression to Achieve His Goals
Lincoln Alexander had every reason to become a bitter person. Because he was black, he had to work twice as hard to achieve half as much as the average young man his age.
Lincoln's parents came from the Caribbean around 1918, to Toronto, where blacks were banned from many places. His dad became a railway porter, his mother . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: The Rodd Family
Title: They Make You Feel At Home
The Rodd family of Prince Edward Island can offer you a bed if you're ever in the Maritimes. And if you have more than five hundred friends, they'll put all of them up too. For more than fifty years the Rodds have been Maritime motel owners.
In 1936, Wally and Sally Rodd started the tradition with . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Tim Phillips, Gerry Watier, Tom Yu
Title: Winning Against the Odds
It's still quite difficult to sell Canadian manufactured products to companies in the Pacific Rim countries. They have certain advantages over us: closeness to market, lower interest rates and lower wages, to name just a few. So you can imagine how Tim Phillips, Gerry Watier and Tom Yu felt three years ago when the company they work for . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Tina VanderHeyden
Title: She Brought Cats & Phantom to Canada
Hard work, some luck and knowing from an early age that she wanted to be in show business is the secret behind Tina VanderHeyden's success.
For over 18 years Tina VanderHeyden has been promoting and marketing live entertainment in Canada. It's a very competitive world and promoters come and go in rapid order. It takes a special kind . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Tony Robins
Title: Building a Chain in Japan
An old saying in the radio business is ... 'always do your best on the air because you never know who is listening and might offer you a better job. ‘Well, actually that old saying really applies to every profession.
Just ask Vancouver architect Tony Robins. Three years ago Tony designed a Japanese restaurant located on . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Tracy Hoskins
Title: Her Unshakable Will to Live
Many of the stories of Canadian Achievers in my series deal with people who have made success of their lives in a monetary sense. This story contains no monetary value. This is a story of one person's triumph over unbelievable odds. A young woman's unshakable will to live. Her story is one of the most powerful and touching . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Vera Bates
Title: She Follows Her Own Path
"Go for it. If you really want to do something in life, do it. I don't care if you're a man or a woman. I'm not a feminist by any means. I just feel you should go and do what you want to do in life. If you're scared to because of what people might think, well, to heck with . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Wally Pieczonka
Title: Beating the Japanese to the Chip
In 1972, Waldemar ("Wally") Pieczonka came to a crossroads in his life: The company he had been working for had lost faith in the future of the silicon chip industry as it related to their present development. Wally had not lost faith, went to work on his own, and made a name for himself.
Born in . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Walt Grealis
Title: The Godfather of Cancon
Cancon is an abbreviation of the two words ... Canadian Content. There's a lot of cancon on radio and television today thanks largely in part to Walt Grealis ... founder of R.P.M. Magazine.
Twenty-five years ago, Walt recognized the need for a Canadian music industry magazine. Until then there wasn't one ... everything came in from the States. . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Wayne Gretzky
Title: He's the Greatest
What hasn't already been said or written about Wayne Gretzky. He's recognized as the greatest hockey player the world has ever seen. My interview with Wayne had been arranged by the Kings' management to take place the morning following a Vancouver Canucks/Los Angeles Kings game in Vancouver. During the game I sat with hockey legend and member of . . . read more
Canadian Achiever: Weber,Dexter,Buxton,Holloway
Title: They Walked from Russia to Canada
On a personal note, one of my other careers as a young man was working on a construction site 200 miles inside the Arctic Circle. It was 1955, Canada was building the Dew Line and as a Prairie farm boy I thought it would be fun and adventurous to work in the Arctic. Plus, the money was great. . . . read more