the Influencer Index

From tech incubators feeding homegrown innovation to visionary CEOs building bridges across the Pacific, BCBusiness reveals the people behind the people—those pulling the strings for others’ success and holding sway over industries and sectors. Some of these women and men may be household names, most of them are not, but one thing is certain: you need to know them to get the job done right on the West Coast in 2013

Media Debbie Landa CEO and Founder, Dealmaker Media and GROW VancouverLike many people who can—and frequently do—move mountains with a cheery phone call or texted request, Debbie Landa can’t think of any particular mountain off the top of her head. The laid-back Saskatchewan native is on the line from her minimalist SoMa office in San Francisco, trying to come up with something tangible and specific that she’s done for Vancouver’s rocket-fuelled startup sector—and why dozens of its entrepreneurs sing her praises for towing them onto the launch pad over the past 18 months. Her events company, Dealmaker Media, hosts business tech events all over the U.S. and is behind the much buzzed-about GROW Vancouver, a conference launched in 2011 as a way to connect promising B.C. entrepreneurs with Silicon Valley ingenuity, mentorship and seed cash.

“Wait, I got it!” Landa says. “Are you in front of a computer? Good. So Google ‘Startup Ecosystem Report’ and ‘Startup Genome,’” she instructs. The results bring up an excerpt from a first-of-its-kind report released late last year called Startup Genome, a website that ranks the world’s top 20 startup ecosystems. Vancouver is a very respectable ninth—middle of the pack globally just behind New York, London and Toronto and ahead of Chicago, Paris and Waterloo.

“You see Vancouver? Not bad, ninth. Now check out its ranking in the Mindset Index category,” she says. The category measures “how well the population of founders in a given ecosystem think like great entrepreneurs, where great entrepreneurs are visionary, resilient, have a high appetite for risk, a strong work ethic and an ability to overcome the typical challenges startups face.”

Vancouver entrepreneurs rank second—second—in the world, just behind the masters of industry in Silicon Valley in what is the single core catalyst of requisite business DNA: to see opportunity and grab it, no matter what’s in the way.

“That’s something I like to think I helped foster in B.C.,” Landa admits finally.

Despite her impact on the Lower Mainland’s startup landscape, Landa only arrived on the scene as a favour to Danny Robinson, founder of tech incubator Bootup Labs Inc., and his wife Maura Rodgers, founder of social media marketing company Media Inc. The three of them had met at Landa’s Under the Radar Conference in 2006.

“They made me do this! I pitched the idea to a group of super angel investors during a dinner in March 2011 and most of them agreed to present at my little conference based on the fact that they love Vancouver. They didn’t know much about the opportunities there, but they just wanted an excuse to visit B.C.”

Within days she had confirmation from Zappos IP Inc. CEO Tony Hsieh and Pandora Media Inc. co-founder Tom Conrad. “This blew up bigger than most conferences in Silicon Valley,” she recalls. She got on the phone to Robinson and Rodgers “and they promoted the hell out of this.” Last August the event was even bigger. The impact of GROW hit Landa when a local coder told her, “You don’t understand how amazing this is. My entire Twitter feed is standing next to me.”

The wild success of the inaugural event and its bridge between Silicon Valley and B.C. has resulted in the GrowLab accelerator, to keep the resources and goodwill of GROW Vancouver for local startups available year-round.

This year, Landa says the GROW conference, running August 14–16 (, has expanded to two days with one dedicated to specific tracks like games, music and e-commerce and the other more focused on thought leadership. She’s also expecting, um, 1,700 people.

The event has also launched a travelling roadshow of sorts, by way of GROWtalks, a “one-day conference focused on how to create simple, actionable metrics and use them to make better product and marketing decisions for startup success.” It hit Toronto and Montreal last month and is in Seattle, Portland and L.A. this month.

Landa’s ability to broker meetings and deals between B.C. entrepreneurs and Silicon Valley royalty comes down to trust, and so does her definition of influence. “I’ve been doing these business events for 12 years,” she says. “The CEOs who are agreeing to hang in Vancouver in 2013 for a few days are the same people who came to my events a few years back looking for a break.”


Science Dr. Julio Montaner Director, B.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDSThis Argentinian transplant arrived in B.C. for a post-doctoral fellowship at UBC just as the HIV/AIDS epidemic detonated in the early 1980s. In his three decades in the province, Dr. Julio Montaner has helped remove the disease’s stigma and saved millions of lives. During clinical trials in 1996, Montaner co-discovered one of the biggest single contributions to stopping the spread of HIV/AIDS: A triple-drug therapy that is still the gold standard for treatment today. the highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has taken the automatic death sentence off HIV diagnoses. In addition to his research and clinical practice, these days Montaner acts as an advocate for prevention through treatment. He is the director of the B.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS at St. Paul’s Hospital and served as a past president of the International AIDS Society. He is also the chair in AIDS research and head of the division of AIDS in the UBC Faculty of Medicine. In March 2012, Montaner was awarded the Grand Decoration of Honour for Services to the Republic of Austria for his pioneering research, a prestigious international award from the president of Austria. Montaner says his work won’t be done, however, until there is an HIV- and AIDS-free generation. “This is a huge revolutionary approach—within a generation—to trying to control what was once a totally out-of-control pandemic,” he says. “For the most part, it could really become a thing of the past if we applied what we have shown is the best treatment, but at the same time the best prevention.” —L.P. Real Estate Robert Fung President, The Salient GroupFor a city as young as Vancouver, it’s fitting that the man behind much of its most exciting development is a young gun himself. Robert Fung, the 46-year-old president of real estate development firm The Salient Group, was one of the biggest forces in turning Gastown into Vancouver’s hippest neighbourhood, full of clothing boutiques, restaurants and bars and tech companies. Besides rejuvenating Vancouver’s oldest postal code (with projects like the Paris Block and the Taylor Building), Fung also set the bar for green development when he trialed the city’s first gold LEED-standard building in the Flack Block on Water Street.

Named three times to Vancouver magazine’s annual Power 50 list, Fung’s influence was once again heralded last year when he was bestowed the inaugural Emerging Visionary award through the Museum of Vancouver’s City Shapers Awards. “We felt that Robert Fung’s influence across a number of different areas would indicate that he was an emerging city visionary. He brought an old part of the city back to life and he also enabled the creative industries to flourish,” says Kate Follington, director of development and marketing for the museum.

For his next venture, Fung is looking east to the historic city of New Westminster where plans for revamping the Trapp Block building are in the works. One of the only affordable areas left in Greater Vancouver, New Westminster is poised to become the next Mecca of the city’s creative elite. As Gastown’s success has demonstrated, in the high-stakes real estate gambling game that Vancouverites love to play, following Fung’s lead is as close to a safe bet as you’ll find.


Retail Clint Mahlman COO and Senior Vice- President, London Drugs Ltd. The catalyst behind London Drugs’ green initiatives, COO Clint Mahlman makes sustainability a priority for his own company, as well as on a national level. Speaking to the significant impact that London Drugs’ “What’s the Green Deal?” recycling program and waste-management stewardship is making in the retail industry, Mahlman humbly says he’s happy to use his background and title to get things done, “but there’s large teams and lots of great partners that are equally as important to making this happen.” A board member for the Recycling Council of B.C. and the Electronic Products Recycling Association, he adds that “business needs to stand up and take a lead in how we approach our philosophy around waste and how it gets introduced into the waste stream.” Retail expert David Ian Gray of DIG360 Consulting Ltd. points to Mahlman’s ability to balance a business with an environmental agenda: “He’s embraced change in a sector that I don’t think is really known for change, particularly on the issue of trying to get harmonization across Canada on environmental regulations. You’d normally see that on a well-capitalized national chain, possibly even a global chain, and you’re seeing that impact from a regional chain, London Drugs, which is pretty impressive.” — Steve Nash Founder, Steve Nash EnterprisesWhen it comes to his athletic accolades, Vancouver Island’s star hoopster needs little introduction. South African-born, B.C.-bred Steve Nash was picked up by the Phoenix Suns in the 1996 NBA draft, twice named league MVP and is one of five players ever to top 10,000 career assists. But when Nash isn’t setting up his teammates, he’s setting up a stadium full of entrepreneurial ventures under Steve Nash Enterprises.

With equity in more than a dozen businesses—from his film production company Meathawk and the Vancouver Whitecaps soccer franchise to a skincare startup—the 39-year-old is proving his talents, work ethic and reach extend well beyond the court. He founded an eponymous chain of health clubs. He partnered with advertising executive Michael Duda from award-winning Deutsch Inc. on Madison Avenue—where he also interned for three months in 2008—and formed venture capital company Consigliere Brand Capital LLC to invest in sports and tech startups. He exhibits unexpected marketing savvy in his use of social media—particularly in advertisements for brands like Nike and Vitaminwater, as well as his involvement in Apoko Group, which he launched with L.A. Clippers’ Baron Davis in 2009 to specialize in online content management for athletes. In 2011 he signed a three-year deal with Liquid Nutrition Group Inc. as an equity partner and spokesperson of the Montreal-based smoothie, food, vitamin and supplement store that plans to roll out 20 franchises in B.C. alone.

Nash’s knack for finding order and adapting on the fast-paced, ever-changing basketball court translates to the world of business—principles he also applies to the Steve Nash Foundation, his philanthropy project benefiting underprivileged children. He also received the Order of Canada in 2007 and an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from UVic in 2008.

Retirement from basketball is just around the corner, but the world has only seen the start of Steve Nash. “I hate to say it, because the clichés can get nauseating, but I try to keep the ball moving,” he told Fast Company in 2010. “If you let things slow down, they lose momentum.”


tech don safnuk President and CEO, Corporate Recruiters Ltd. After 33 years of recruiting the world’s top tech talent, it’s safe to say Don Safnuk is the godfather of B.C.’s tech industry. “He started Corporate Recruiters in the ‘70s to build a tech industry before there even was a tech industry,” says Brent Holliday, partner at Garibaldi Capital Advisors Ltd. “He’s been involved with many, many companies in hiring the top people who perform for them.” Safnuk founded Corporate Recruiters in 1980s when the concept of deepening B.C.’s tech talent pool was unique. Over three decades later he’s worked with almost everyone in the sector and is known for being an excellent judge of character, Holliday says. In addition to operating behind the scenes, Safnuk was crucial in the founding of the non-profit B.C. Technology Industry Association, an advocate for the province’s 8,900 tech companies. He served six years on its board. Safnuk also helped grow the Victoria Advanced Technology Council, and is the current chair of the Talent Task Force on the Premier’s Technology Council. “Helping the community is helping the technology companies be successful, helping the associations by creating a good infrastructure for them to be successful and supporting the community they live in,” Safnuk says. “Those are the three legs of the stool and I’m very interested in all three.” —L.P.Tech Boris Wertz Founder and General Partner, Version One Ventures; Principal and Founder, GrowLab

Boris Wertz has followed what some may call the typical path of a tech entrepreneur: Start a successful website, sell it, become an investor. It’s his desire to share the wealth among tech startups in B.C. that really makes him influential. His finger-on-the-pulse knowledge has helped this serial entrepreneur become a successful full-time tech investor with startups all over North America.

The former COO of—purchased by Amazon in 2008—began financially backing other Internet startups even before the ink was dry on the AbeBooks deal. Once that sale was in the bag, Wertz became a full-time angel, founding his own venture capital firm Version One Ventures and investing in 35 early-stage companies to date.

Noteworthy B.C. startups in Wertz’s portfolio thus far include Summify, Indochino Apparel Inc., Media Inc. and Clio. He’s also a co-founder of GrowLab, a Vancouver-based startup accelerator (see p. 50).

“I definitely considered moving to a larger tech ecosystem,” he says, but the expansion of the Vancouver startup scene in the past few years has inspired him to stay local. “It’s now one of the best in Canada—companies like Indochino, Clio or HootSuite are proof of a more mature ecosystem. And it’s always more fun to root for the underdog.”


transportation DAVid curtis President and CEO, Viking Air Ltd. David Curtis heads the only Canadian airplane manufacturer west of Ontario, a company that is anchoring B.C.’s burgeoning aerospace sector with a manufacturing capacity that he says quadrupled in size last year. Operations have been bolstered by new business like the $30-million contract with China’s Meiya Air and the 2006 purchase of type certificates from Bombardier, giving Viking license to build its de Havilland Twin Otter. “Dave is a real leader, both provincially and nationally, in aerospace,” says David Schellenberg, former chair of the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada and president and CEO of Cascade Aerospace Inc. “He’s both visionary and really practical at the same time.” In an industry that exports 80 per cent of its products, Curtis has the accolades to prove he’s leading Viking in the right direction for growth. Last November, the Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters association gave Viking the Premier’s Award for Job Creation and named them the B.C. Exporter of the Year, the result of selling aircraft to more than 10 countries and an order book that exceeds $400 million. “B.C. has been growing its aerospace capabilities and Dave is a big leader in that,” adds Schellenberg. “He’s growing our share of the pie by selling internationally and exporting the product.” Curtis calls Viking’s break into the Asian market a “$2.5-billion opportunity” with huge implications for B.C.’s aerospace sector. If Viking’s first Chinese order is any indication, Curtis’s leadership and vision will pay off even more. —K.H. resources donald mcinnes Chair, Clean Energy B.C.; Executive Vice-Chair, Alterra Power Corp.

In a sector renowned for its byzantine regulatory hurdles, Donald McInnes gets things done. When he set out to found a utility-scale energy provider in the early 2000s, he was looking at a blank slate; six years later he had navigated the environmental and regulatory permits and secured financing, negotiated a contract to supply the BC Hydro grid and built B.C.’s biggest run-of-river Hydro project, as well as other renewable-energy projects. The company he founded, Plutonic Power Corp., then merged with Magma Energy Corp. to become $600-million powerhouse Alterra Power Corp.

By his own count, McInnes has had a hand in creating or building a dozen companies—most in mineral exploration, and one tech company. “What I bring is the bigger picture, a tremendous network and a good track record of leadership in terms of building a team that get projects through the Canadian and B.C. environmental process,” he says.

He advises many mining juniors and if he’s on the board there’s a good chance a deal is imminent; he sat on the board of Fronteer Gold Inc. (bought by Newmont Mining Corp. for $2.3 billion in 2011), and Blue Gold Mining Inc. (acquired by Riverstone Resources Inc. in October 2012).

McInnes is currently chair of the Clean Energy Association of B.C., a governor of the B.C. Business Council and a director of Prostate Cancer Canada. He’s also the former president of the Association for Mineral Exploration B.C.


Transportation Bob Wilds Managing Director, Greater Vancouver Gateway Council In his role with the Greater Vancouver Gateway Council (GVGC), Bob Wilds is shaping the course of Vancouver’s future as a major Asia Pacific gateway. Tasked with managing the disparate needs of local transit operators—from shipping and trucking companies to airports and seaports—the GVGC acts as liaison between public and private sector transportation companies, as well as the provincial and federal governments. Each year, millions of dollars pour into B.C. through the Lower Mainland’s ports and borders and the GVGC is the mechanism that allows this process to chug along with minimal interruption. From securing government investment for improved roadways to monitoring the effects of increased shipping traffic to B.C.’s economy, Wilds’s GVGC has “really been able to direct where major infrastructure has been built. Their priorities are shaping the region in a way that’s not being fully discussed, or even being realized,” says Gordon Price, director of the City Program at SFU. Wilds’s fellow GVGC council member David Gillen says Wilds plays a key role in making the organization as powerful as it is. In addition to his work on the GVGC, Wilds has acted as the vice-chair of the board of Port Metro Vancouver and is past chair of the B.C. Institute of Technology and the Lions Gate Hospital Foundation. —S.F.agriculture HAROLD STEVES Richmond City CouncillorWith roots that trace to the pioneering days of Richmond, Harold Steves has made his mark close to home. A lifelong farmer and cattle breeder, he comes from a long line of influential agriculturalists—the town of Steveston is so named for his family.

A Richmond city councillor since 1977, the former MLA left an indelible impression on B.C.’s agriculture industry as an advocate. In the early 1970s, Steves helped to found the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR), a controversial collection of 47,000 square kilometres of land across the province designated purely for farming and agricultural uses. Today he’s an active member of the Farmland Defense League, which monitors usage of the ALR and has a mandate to protect B.C. farmlands, and he serves on a number of boards including chairing the Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Committee for the Richmond City Council and representative for the Agricultural Advisory Committee. Formerly, he was chair of agriculture for Metro Vancouver and he’s been working on a regional food system strategy with an aim to maintain a secure, quality food supply for the region’s growing population. And the 75-year-old has no plans to slow down anytime soon.

“It’s an exciting time for B.C. agriculture. More consumers recognize the high quality of food produced locally here in B.C.,” he says. “People want to know what is in their food and how it is produced. We are witnessing a return to direct marketing and farmers’ markets, urban agriculture, community gardens, home gardening and organic farming methods.”


MEDIA DAVID SUZUKI Scientist and Journalist He dragged environmental preservation into the Canadian public consciousness 30 years ago with The Nature of Things With David Suzuki and has used Canada’s longest-running documentary series to keep it there. His columns for the Globe and Mail often sit on the paper’s most-commented slot for days. He’s written 40 books, had a dual career as a professor and geneticist with 24 honorary degrees and was voted in as the fifth-greatest Canadian by his countrymen in 2004. Over the years, Suzuki’s stepped up the defence of his home province’s natural bounty—the same bounty that provincial and federal leaders have all but tagged and put on the rack for voracious Asian markets to browse. How influential is the 76-year-old? He resigned from the David Suzuki Foundation last year, worried that his opinions and criticism of industrial development in Canada’s natural areas could antagonize the Conservative government, which stated that non-profits must disclose all political activity and committed millions towards increased supervision of charities. But his storytelling and PR mastery continue at his foundation with a river of visual, impossible-to- ignore studies, like one which found that the Lower Mainland’s Natural Capital is worth up to $60 billion in benefits annually. That has to be more than what China will pay for our LNG, right?  —T.G.culture heather deal Vancouver City CouncillorFirst elected to City Hall in 2005, Councillor Heather Deal has made it her mission to liven Vancouver’s streets through cultural attractions and festivals like the Cultural Olympiad and the city’s 125th-anniversary Summer Live concerts. But to see real proof of Deal’s mark on the city, look no further than the Portland-style food carts, which now pepper the streets of downtown Vancouver.

Since Deal first brought her expanded food-cart program proposal to City Council five years ago, Vancouver has gone from a verifiable street-food wasteland (with only the occasional hot-dog stand) to the home of an impressive 103 carts.

Vancouver’s food-cart revolution has done more than provide exciting lunches to locals. Vancouver councillor Andrea Reimer says “food carts have played a huge part of animating the public realm. It’s an essential frontline piece that helps people imagine what’s possible in terms of local food, what’s possible in terms of economic development and what’s possible in terms of better utilizing public space.”

With proposals approved to license up to 130 carts by 2014, Deal’s plan to continue feeding the foodies on the street is pressing on—and inspiring some of Vancouver’s most influential restaurateurs, including Vikrim Vij, who opened his first mobile food cart last year.


MINING MARK O’DEA Founder and Chair, Oxygen Capital Corp. O’Dea is the geologist/financier who led Fronteer Gold Inc. through $370 million in financing before the company was sold to Newmont Mining Corp. for $2.3 billion in 2011. When he took the helm as president and CEO of Fronteer in 2001, O’Dea considered mentoring tomorrow’s leaders as much a part of his mission as developing mineral properties. He points to Matt Lennox-King, a geologist fresh out of university who was one of O’Dea’s first hires at Fronteer. Today Lennox-King is CEO of Pilot Gold Inc., a spin-out from Fronteer. O’Dea also points to Will Lepore, a recent university graduate when he joined Fronteer in 2006. Fronteer funded Lepore’s master’s degree and today Lepore is a project geologist working at Pilot Gold’s exploration site in Turkey. “After Fronteer was sold we had this pool of talent we’d amassed,” O’Dea explains. “Talented individuals in the executive team need strong mentors and we wanted to create a culture where these individuals could grow, could advance in their careers.” So O’Dea formed Oxygen Capital Corp., a kind of incubator for mining companies. At its inception, Oxygen took three juniors under its wing: Pilot Gold, True North Nickel Inc. and Blue Gold Mining Inc. Within a year it had scored its first success when Blue Gold merged with the much bigger Riverstone Resources Inc. —D.J. CULTURE Chad Kroeger Co-Founder, 604 Records Inc.; Lead Singer, Nickelback

For a band whose music few admit to liking, Nickelback sure has done well (more than 50 million records sold), and by most counts credit goes to frontman Chad Kroeger. A workaholic control freak, Kroeger’s known for taking on formulaic ventures, which in 2011 reportedly earned him $9.7 million.

Recognizing that record deals make millionaires of record-company executives—not musicians—the 38-year-old increased the band’s take-home through clever licensing and merchandising agreements and shrewd product-placement negotiations. In 2008, Nickelback also signed a global recording, touring and merchandising deal with concert and ticket sales company Live Nation said to be worth as much as $70 million.

A prolific songwriter and producer, Kroeger also works with the biggest names in music, from Carlos Santana and Timbaland to Travis Tritt. And yep, Kroeger gets royalties from all the songs he helps to pen and produce—even if he doesn’t accompany the artist. In 2002 he founded 604 Records in Vancouver. Pop princess Carly Rae Jepsen is on the label and every time “Call Me Maybe” gets played, as the record-label owner Kroeger sees a share of the profits.

His touch is a catalyst for success, whether with instruments or in business. Though for Kroeger—pronounced “Crew-ger,” for the record—they’re clearly one and the same.

— K.M.

forestry KEN baker CEO, Forestry Innovation Investment Ltd. Within the past decade, lumber exports to China have gone from near zero to more than $1 billion. Forestry-sector experts point to one man behind the success story: Ken Baker, head of Forestry Innovation Investment Ltd. The Crown corporation was founded in 2003 and in that year established an office in Shanghai with the goal of building a demand for B.C. wood. Prior to taking top position at the Crown corporation in 2004, Baker had been the province’s deputy chief forester for four years, and since 1985 held key positions in the forest ministry, like running the province’s timber-pricing system and negotiating settlements in the softwood lumber dispute with the U.S. As Baker recounts, his first couple of years in Shanghai involved many networking dinners and drinking a lot of a potent spirit called baijiu. “All we were doing over there was getting to know who are the decision-makers in the system, how do they interrelate, who do you really have to get to?” The breakthrough came around 2006, when government officials agreed to give B.C. lumber the opportunity to replace traditional steel-supported flat roofs in Shanghai with wood truss-supported sloped roofs. Then, following the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, China allowed B.C. to showcase wood-frame structures in reconstruction efforts. Wood-frame construction has still made only minuscule inroads in China, Baker explains, with 80 per cent of B.C.’s lumber exports to the country still being used for concrete forms. However, with relationships now well established, he believes the market is primed for the private sector to step in and capitalize on the momentum. “We’re not donating anything anymore,” he says proudly. “We don’t need to; commercial interests are picking it up.” —D.J. aboriginal business Shawn Atleo National Chief, Assembly of First Nations In a fractious community with grievances too numerous to list and a diffuse leadership spread among more than 200 B.C. First Nations, one clear voice stands out. Shawn A-in-chut Atleo played a unifying role as chief of the B.C. Assembly of First Nations (AFN) from 2003 to 2009, before becoming national chief of the AFN, where he is currently serving a second three-year term following a hotly disputed election last July.

Atleo forged the historic Leadership Accord among B.C. First Nations leaders in 2005. Last December, the 45-year-old hereditary chief of the Ahousaht First Nation reappeared in headlines alongisde Mayor Gregor Robertson at a ceremonial signing of the Save the Fraser Declaration, calling for a ban on new pipelines and oil tankers in B.C.

“The debate over the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline has vaulted First Nations people and their rights to the forefront of the national discussion on energy, the environment and resource development,” Atleo wrote in an August 2012 editorial in the Globe and Mail. “We must be partners, not an afterthought.”


tourism dave butler Director of Sustainability, Canadian Mountain Holidays

The controversial decision by the Campbell Liberals to dissolve the Crown corporation Tourism BC in 2009 was a call to action for Dave Butler, a guy who soft-pedals himself as “passionate about tourism” but is rightfully lauded as an industry heavyweight for fusing that passion with bureaucratic prowess. After graduating from UBC with a Bachelor of Science in forestry, Penticton-born Butler began his career working in government agencies. In the mid-1980s he ran into the father of B.C. heli-skiing, Hans Gmoser, and by the mid-‘90s had talked his way into a job with Gmoser’s Canadian Mountain Holidays where today Butler holds the role of director of sustainability, through which he leads the company’s government, community relations and sustainability efforts. His unfettered belief in good governance has also led him to his current role as vice-president of Cranbrook District Chamber of Commerce in his hometown and on to the advisory planning committee for the city. Most notably, however, Butler has sat on the Tourism Industry Association of B.C. board since 2007, the organization that put his name forward to be chair of the Provincial Destination Marketing Organization task force. Working with eight colleagues and government, Butler has been a key force in the negotiation and development