I have many great memories as an employee, then as a Partner of the firm for over 33 years. A lot of those memories are at Partners meetings. One of those memories actually occurred prior to my admission into the Partnership.
I joined the firm in September 1986. The tax Partner at that time was Ted Kozub. Ted was based in the Penticton office and also operated from Vancouver. As the northern offices did not have a full-time tax person, I had to visit the offices twice a year to provide tax support. We had no Citrix at that time.
Ted joined me on one of my visits to the Yellowknife office as the Partners meeting was being hosted there. I am guessing the year was 1988. The meeting was to be held in a fishing resort on the shore of Great Bear Lake. When Barry Cope hurt himself in Vancouver, a spot opened up on the trip. Since I was already in Yellowknife, Ted suggested that I joined them for the meeting. Without hesitation, I accepted the invitation as I thought it would be a great career move to meet the Partners. As I was not prepared to go further north, I had to borrow a parka and warmer clothes from a staff member.
The topography there was amazing. We were well above the tree line so all I saw was barren land with shrubbery. I recall the ground was soft as I was walking on moss and other ground growth. It was also rather rocky. I do remember seeing an inuksuk for the first time. Too bad I did not have a camera with me.
To my surprise, I was permitted to sit in on the meeting. I obviously had nothing to contribute but it was definitely a great experience to hear the discussions. This showed me how open the Partnership was and that I wanted to be part of it.
As I mentioned, it was a fishing resort so each day we were paired up with a guide. My partner was Hank Ambrose of the Whitehorse office. To illustrate how small the world is, Hank and I were paired up again in a subsequent meeting at MacKay Lake, we ended up with the same guide and he remembered us.
David George and Roman Adler of Vancouver were paired up. I guess the plug on the boat was not inserted properly and it popped out on the way back to the lodge. This was not a problem when the boat was going fast as the water drained, however, when it slowed down, water would fill the boat. When they got close to shore, they had to slow down and water started seeping in. For some reason, Roman decided to go fishing in business attire including a pair of expensive leather shoes. As he did not want to get shoes wet, he started climbing up the boat. The vision of him on the high end of the boat trying to keep dry will forever be burned in my memory. He eventually had to step off the boat and got all wet.
There were other memories on that trip such as poker games and home-cooked meals. Every meal was scheduled, so if you slept in you would not get breakfast.
I have many memories of my time at Crowe MacKay, but the Great Bear Lake is one of my favourites.