Weekend Warrior: Security expert Mike Weston sets sail

Mike Weston has been running Cube Global Storage for a long time. He's been sailing for much longer

Credit: Nik West

The B.C. coast has been the Cube Global Storage founder’s playground for more than 65 years 

Mike Weston found his sea legs not long after he started school. The 73-year-old owner of Victoria-based Cube Global Storage first navigated the water at age six, on his parents’ yacht.

Soon he was building rafts and rowing out to Discovery Island from his childhood home in Victoria’s Uplands neighbourhood. In those days, Weston recalls, the difference between a house on waterfront Beach Drive (where his mom and dad eventually settled) and one inland was about $1,000.

Since then, he’s gone through about 10 yachts, he estimates. His current vessel? A 65-foot Monk McQueen named Virginia Marie that was built in 1972 and is reportedly in “perfect condition.” That last fact is notable, given that Weston’s boats don’t sit in the harbour gathering rust and seagull droppings. He regularly finds time to take Virginia Marie, along with four or five family members, on long voyages, sometimes sailing as far as Alaska.

“It’s a beautiful trip, and if you do the Inside Passage there’s so much protection,” says Weston, referring to the winding route through the coastal islands often traversed by ferries and cruise ships.

He believes yachting helped his three adult children develop an appreciation for nature and for the province where they were raised: “They grew up on yachting and boating, which is great because you get the family out into the wilderness, which is really important. Having a couple fresh crabs and oysters, and digging for clams, those are all really good experiences for young people.”

His love of the sea has extended outside the bonds of blood: Weston’s son-in-law, former Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Steve Sinclair, is director of operations at the Victoria International Marina, which Virginia Marie and others will call home after its grand opening next spring.

“I think the marina is going to be a winner,” Weston says. “It’s definitely going to bring a lot of larger boats to the area, and I would think each one would stay for periods of two to three years.”

Although it might seem like Weston breezes through B.C.’s many islands without a care in the world, Strongbow in hand—his drink of choice because “you don’t get too tired”—he sees some things that bother him.

“I’m not overly excited about the fish farms because they’re very close to the rivers, and the fish coming down are having some problems with lice and all that sort of stuff, so that isn’t working as it should be,” he says.

Weston brings that environmental awareness to his work as a supporting member of the South Island Prosperity Project (SIPP), an economic development agency that helps businesses expand in or move to Victoria and its surrounding region. SIPP’s goal is “longer-term planning than what politics is doing these days,” he says. “We’ve got to be smart here in how we look after our cities and make sure they are vibrant and clean. This plastic in the ocean is bad for us, too. We used the ocean as a dumping ground at one point, and we’ve learned that you don’t do that.”

He encourages B.C. residents to spend time in their natural surroundings. “You’ve got the San Juans, you’ve got the Gulf Islands, you’ve got Vancouver Island, and then you can go into the west coast: Tofino, Ucluelet and all of those,” Weston notes.

“The beauty is that on our coast, whether you’ve got a 10-footer with a pair of oars or a small three-horsepower kicker or something bigger, you can just get out and enjoy it,” he adds. And, you know, a raft works, too.

Warrior Spotlight

Mike Weston is founder and owner of Cube Global Storage, which incorporated in 1987. Today, the company employs more than 200 people at offices in Victoria and Vancouver. Cube Global securely stores items, documents and data, both physical and digital. It also acts as a disaster recovery site by providing space for clients to run their business after a catastrophic event such as an earthquake or a fire.